Nats beat Braves 13-12 on Uggla’s HR in 9th

Atlanta, GA ( – Dan Uggla delivered a blast to beat his old

This was some slump-buster.

Uggla hit a three-run homer in the top of the ninth inning and the Washington
Nationals snapped a six-game losing streak with an improbable 13-12 win over
the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday in a game they trailed 9-1 after two innings.

Uggla’s go-ahead blast off Braves closer Jason Grilli was his first homer as a
National and one of 32 combined hits in the game between the NL East rivals.
He knocked in five runs.

The Nationals won despite trailing by eight runs entering the third inning
after right-hander A.J. Cole was knocked around in his major league debut.

Denard Span had a career high-tying five hits, including a solo home run that
knocked Braves starter Julio Teheran out of the game in the sixth inning.

Span, who scored four times, led off three different innings with hits. Jose
Lobaton added a three-run blast in the victory.

Washington lost the opener of the three-game series 8-4 on Monday night for
its longest losing streak in almost two years. Tuesday’s win marked the Nats’
biggest comeback since moving from Montreal to Washington in 2005.

Freddie Freeman and A.J. Pierzynski fueled Atlanta’s offense with four hits
apiece. Freeman scored three times and Pierzynski drove in four runs.

Cole filled in for injured ace Max Scherzer and lasted two innings, giving up
nine runs — only four of them earned — on nine hits. The 23-year-old was
called up from Triple-A Syracuse to replace Scherzer, who suffered a sprained
thumb during an at-bat last week.

The Nationals pulled within 11-10 after a three-run seventh inning highlighted
by Uggla’s two-run triple. Freeman singled in the bottom of the seventh for
his first four-hit game since July 2013 and Pierzynski added an RBI single to
make it 12-10, his first four-hit game since August 2013.

Grilli (0-1) struck out Ryan Zimmerman to start the ninth, but Lobaton singled
and Danny Espinosa walked to set the stage for Uggla, who played for Atlanta
from 2011 until he was released last July.

He homered into the left-field seats on a 93 mph fastball that Grilli left
over the plate on an 0-2 count.

Span stroked a two-out double over Jonny Gomes’ head in left field for his
fourth career five-hit game and Drew Storen stranded a runner in the bottom of
the ninth for his fifth save of the season.

Andrelton Simmons delivered a two-run single in Atlanta’s seven-run second
inning after Cole intentionally walked Nick Markakis to load the bases.

Two runs scored on Cole’s error in the inning — he didn’t catch Zimmerman’s
toss while covering first base — and Kelly Johnson followed with a two-run
double. Jace Peterson’s RBI single gave the Braves a 9-2 lead.

Lobaton belted a three-run homer to left-center field to cap a four-run fifth
inning that drew the Nationals within 10-6.

Span stroked his first homer of the season with two outs in the sixth.

Pierzynski knocked in Freeman for the second time in the game in the bottom of
the sixth with a double to make it 11-7.

Game Notes

Teheran gave up seven runs — three earned — on 10 hits in 5 2/3 innings …
Blake Treinen (1-2) threw two innings to earn the win for Washington … To
make room for Cole, the Nationals optioned right-hander Rafael Martin to
Syracuse … Tanner Roark pitched three innings, more than anyone else for the
Nationals. He gave up two runs, six hits and a walk.