Braves 5, Marlins 0

Punchless Marlins fall to the red-hot Braves

 

Jacob Turner gave up four runs in the first inning, and Miami lost its sixth in a row as Atlanta extended its winning streak to 14.

 
Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jacob Turner, rear center, reacts after he was warned by umpires for hitting Atlanta Braves batter Dan Uggla after giving up two home runs in the first inning of a baseball game at Turner Field in Atlanta on Aug. 9, 2013.
Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jacob Turner, rear center, reacts after he was warned by umpires for hitting Atlanta Braves batter Dan Uggla after giving up two home runs in the first inning of a baseball game at Turner Field in Atlanta on Aug. 9, 2013.
Dave Tulis / AP

cspencer@MiamiHerald.com

Take a red-hot team that is laying waste to the rest of the division, stick it on the same field with a cellar-dweller that is sinking lower by the day, and the result is not unlike a bug standing in the path of a steamroller.

It was as predictable as it was swift Friday as the overmatched Marlins were splattered by the Braves, who ran their winning streak to 14 in a row with a 5-0 victory that was decided early.

Justin Upton and Chris Johnson each walloped first-inning home runs, Brian McCann tagged one in the third, and the Braves made easy work of Jacob Turner in the Atlanta victory.

“They’re going good and, right now, we’re not,” said Marlins manager Mike Redmond.

The defeat was the sixth in a row for the Marlins, their longest skid since a nine-game losing streak at the end of May. The Braves, meanwhile, maintained a 15 1/2-game cushion in the NL East as their four division rivals drift downward with losing records.

The evening was especially rough for Turner, who gave up as many home runs in the first three innings as he had in his previous 77 1/3 innings this season combined. He also became the first starting pitcher for the Marlins since June 15 to give up more than three runs in an inning when he surrendered four in the first.

“Two guys that are obviously good hitters, and two bad pitches,” Turner said of the two first-inning shots.

That ended a stretch of 288 2/3 innings — the second-longest streak in the majors this season — in which the starters didn’t cough up a big inning.

Turner also got under Dan Uggla’s collar.

Immediately after Johnson cranked a three-run homer to center — the second Braves homer of the inning — Turner came in high and tight to Uggla, drilling him in his left elbow. Uggla had words with Turner as he was walked to first by home-plate umpire Mike Estabrook. Warnings were issued to both teams, but there were no further incidents.

Uggla even gave Turner a playful tap on the rump when they passed one another at the end of the inning. By that point, what Turner really needed was a pat on the shoulder, letting him know everything would be OK. The Braves beat him up that badly.

Turner blamed the plunking on his poor early command.

“I would never try to throw at somebody’s head like that, and that’s what I told him,” Turner said.

Turner, who had not given up five or more runs since September of last season, managed to hang on for five innings. But the result was his third losing decision in a row.

Once again, the Marlins did little at the plate.

Christian Yelich singled to start the game but was doubled up on Jake Marisnick’s sharp line drive caught by Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons. The Marlins didn’t collect another hit off Brandon Beachy until Logan Morrison’s single in the fifth.

Beachy made the Marlins looked especially helpless in the fourth when he struck out the top of the order — Yelich, Marisnick and Giancarlo Stanton — all on called three strikes.

Beachy, who went eight innings, gave up just three hits and remained unbeaten against Miami. He is 3-0 with a 2.38 ERA in six career starts.

• Koyie Hill, who was called up Friday from Triple A New Orleans, singled in his first at bat, a ninth-inning base hit off Braves reliever Scott Downs.

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