NL East Wrap: McCann rallies Braves past Mariners

NL East Wrap: McCann rallies Braves past Mariners
June 29, 2011, 4:43 am
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Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Posted: 12:43 a.m. Updated: 2:21 a.m.

The Associated Press
Braves 5, Mariners 4


SEATTLE -- Tommy Hanson wasn't all that interested in talking about his return from the disabled list.

"You want me to talk about how great Brian McCann is?" Hanson questioned. "He's unbelievable."

McCann is a good place to start, considering the hot streak he's on right now.

McCann tormented Seattle pitching again with a tiebreaking two-run single in the seventh inning, part of a four-hit night by the Atlanta catcher, and the Braves rallied from a three-run deficit to beat the Mariners 5-4 on Tuesday night.

The Braves took advantage of late control problems by starter Michael Pineda (7-5) and the Mariners' inability to come through with a clutch hit early against Hanson. Seattle left the bases loaded in the second inning, and runners on second and third in the fourth. They were limited to one run both times.

That gave Hanson (9-4) time to settle down, his offense time to rally and McCann another stage to shine.

And McCann did it both at the plate and in the field.

His two-run single off Seattle reliever Aaron Laffey in the seventh capped a three-run rally for the Braves. In the bottom of the seventh, McCann kept the Braves in front with a perfect throw on the back end of a double steal.

McCann threw out Adam Kennedy at second with Justin Smoak at the plate. Kennedy took off on a 3-0 pitch, and McCann's perfect throw to second nabbed Kennedy as Ichiro Suzuki slid safely into third.

"I pretty much single-handedly lost that one. That wasn't good," Kennedy said.

Mets 14, Tigers 3


DETROIT -- Jason Bay's drive down the line in left field stayed fair, giving the New York Mets their first grand slam in nearly two years.

Their next drought was a lot shorter.

Carlos Beltran hit a grand slam the following inning, and the rout was very much on.

New York beat the Detroit Tigers 14-3 on Tuesday night to move back above .500 -- and snapped a peculiar streak of 299 games without a bases-loaded homer.

"Sometimes in this game, there's things that take a while to happen," Beltran said. "Today, we were able to hit two. No explanation for it."

There is an explanation for why the Mets (40-39) have a winning record: They're starting to hit.

Jose Reyes went 4 for 4 with a double and a triple -- his second straight four-hit game. He and Angel Pagan both reached base five times.

The Mets scored 14 runs for the second time in three games. They beat Texas 14-5 on Saturday. New York has scored 36 runs in its last three games.

Reyes needed a homer for the cycle but settled for a walk in the seventh inning. He was then lifted for a pinch-runner.

"I tried. I was looking for something in," he said. "Everything away, so I take a walk."

New York had been without a grand slam since Pagan hit one Aug. 1, 2009, then Bay and Beltran cleared the bases in the fourth and fifth innings off reliever Daniel Schlereth.

The Mets are above .500 for the first time since they were 3-2 in early April.

Detroit starter Rick Porcello (6-6) allowed seven runs and 11 hits in 3 2-3 innings.

"He threw some bad pitches that they hit, and he threw some good pitches that they hit," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. "They were aggressive and they beat us up pretty well."

Angels 11, Nationals 5


ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Erick Aybar and Vernon Wells homered during a three-run sixth inning, Mark Trumbo atoned for a two-run error with three RBIs, and the Los Angeles Angels rallied to beat the Washington Nationals 11-5 on Tuesday night.

The Angels' 11th victory in 16 games put them over the .500 mark for the first time since June 3, and kept them 1 games behind first-place Texas in the AL West.

It was their 16th straight win when scoring four or more runs, the longest such streak by any team this season.

Wells, who came in batting .205, tied a career high with four hits -- the most he's had in 54 games with the Angels since coming over in a trade with Toronto.

Washington is 0-2 under new manager Davey Johnson after winning 13 of its previous 15 games. Laynce Nix was 4 for 4 with a home run, but the Nationals committed a season-worst five errors after making just 19 in 53 games since May 1.

Trailing 5-3 after a four-run sixth by Washington, the Angels pulled ahead 6-5 in the bottom half. Aybar chased starter Jason Marquis with his fifth homer, a leadoff drive into the into the lower seats in the right field corner. Torii Hunter greeted Collin Balester (1-1) with a single, and Wells put the Angels ahead to stay with a drive over the fence in left-center for his 10th homer.

Athletics 1, Marlins 0


OAKLAND, Calif. -- Gio Gonzalez allowed one hit over eight innings, pitching the Oakland Athletics to a rain-delayed 1-0 victory over the Florida Marlins on Tuesday night.

Hideki Matsui doubled and scored the only run on Kurt Suzuki's sacrifice fly. Coco Crisp had two hits as the A's won for the eighth time in 12 games.

After the start was delayed 72 minutes by rain, Gonzalez (7-5) won his second consecutive decision despite getting support of two or fewer runs for the 10th time in 17 starts. The left-hander gave up a leadoff single to Emilio Bonifacio, then retired 23 of his next 26 batters. He walked three and struck out nine.

Andrew Bailey struck out the side in the ninth for his sixth save in seven chances.

Marlins starter Javier Vazquez (4-8) fell to 1-4 over his last seven games despite not giving up an earned run for the second straight start. Vazquez allowed an unearned run on three hits and matched his season high with seven innings. He did not walk a batter and struck out five.

Vazquez pitched six innings or more for the first time in five starts. He retired 11 of the final 12 hitters he faced as the Marlins lost their 14th consecutive one-run game. They started the season 14-4 in one-run games. Florida fell to 3-23 in June.

Gonzalez did not allow a runner past first base and never faced more than four batters in an inning.

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