Senzatela pitches 7 strong innings, Rockies beat Braves 4-3

MLB

DENVER (AP)Antonio Senzatela overcame a leadoff home run by Ozzie Albies, pitching seven strong innings as the Colorado Rockies beat the Atlanta Braves 4-3 Friday night.

The Braves maintained a two-game lead in the NL East over Philadelphia, which lost at Miami.

Charlie Blackmon homered for the second time in as many nights and C.J. Cron hit a go-ahead single in the sixth inning.

Senzatela (4-9) allowed six hits and three runs. Carlos Estevez pitched a hitless ninth for his fourth save in eight chances. ”He was very efficient, and this is an aggressive, early-count swinging team, and you’ve got to locate some pitches or they’re going to ambush you,” Rockies manager Bud Black said of Senzatela.

”I thought from my vantage point, it looked like he was moving the ball in and out, kept the ball down, got his groundballs, and had no walks. It was a very solid pitched game,” he said. Though jolted by the leadoff homer, the first homer he had given up since St. Louis’ Paul Goldschmidt connected against him on July 1, Senzatela said he quickly refocused on the task at hand.

”I’ve grown,” Senzatela said. ”I feel like no matter what happens, I just need to keep going, to try to win, throw the ball down in the strike zone and get grounders. I think I did a good job tonight, and the guys played really good defense behind me.”

Trevor Story hit a two-out double in the sixth and Cron followed with a sharp single to left, chasing Huascar Ynoa (4-5).

Down 3-2 going into the sixth, the Braves got a two-out double from Freddie Freeman and an RBI single by Riley. Trying to advance on the plate, Riley was thrown out at second by left fielder Raimel Tapia after a replay reversal.

Eddie Rosario doubled to start the Atlanta eighth. He tried to steal third, but Ryan McMahon got the throw from catcher Dom Nunez and made a no-look, between-the-legs tag on the sliding Rosario for the out. ”It was a great play from them,” Rosario said through an interpreter. ”In my mind I just read the situation. I just wanted to give Ozzie (Albies) an opportunity to be able to drive in a run with one out.”

Albies hit the second pitch of the game into the stand of evergreens beyond the center field wall. Blackmon, who hit a grand slam in Thursday’s 6-5 loss to the Braves, hit his 12th homer in the bottom half.

Rosario’s sacrifice fly in the second put the Braves back on top. The Rockies regained the advantage with a two-run second on Brendan Rodgers’ RBI single and Blackmon’s sacrifice fly.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rockies: LF Connor Joe was removed from the game in the bottom of the third after apparently injuring his right upper leg. Joe, aboard on a walk, advanced to third on Rodgers’ single. He grabbed the back of his right leg as he pulled into third, bringing out team trainers, who pulled him from the game for further examination. He was replaced by pinch-runner Garrett Hampson. … The Rockies recalled RHP Ashton Goudeau from Triple-A Albuquerque and optioned RHP Justin Lawrence to Albuquerque.

UP NEXT

Braves: RHP Ian Anderson (6-5, 3.36 ERA) will look to build off one of his best outings of the season. He pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings in getting the win in a 9-0 decision over San Francisco last time out.

Rockies: RHP German Marquez (11-10) has been at his best pitching at Coors Field. He has gone 8-2 with a 3.13 ERA in 13 starts at home.

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

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