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Monday Curse Snapped, Atlanta Braves Take Series Opener with Miami Marlins

July 31st, 2012 at 8:45 AM
By Cody Fields

It wasn't as epic a curse as the Curse of the Bambino, but the Atlanta Braves finally snapped their 2012 Monday Curse on the 13th try. After going 0-12 on Mondays this year, the Braves – with the exception of Tommy Hanson – went with a traditional high socks look for good luck. The socks apparently worked, the Bravos down the Miami Marlins 8-2 at Turner Field.

Jason Heyward led the way by homering on the second straight day and was a part of a four-run fifth that allowed Hanson to pick up another high-stress win. The win was his 12th of the year, a new career high.

The win was also the Braves' sixth straight and the first time they've won on a Monday since Aug. 22, 2011.

And it just happened that the idea to get their pants up and socks/stirrups visible was that of Chipper Jones.

"I figured if it was brought to everyone's attention, we might play a little harder," Jones said. "It didn't work last Monday. But it's my job to change things up when they're not going good around here."

Hanson's start wasn't as eventful as his ugly line five days ago, but he still managed hold the Marlins to one run over five innings despite allowing six hits and three walks while getting some help from his defense.

Jose Reyes drove in the Marlins' only run off Hanson with a two-out double in the fifth, but Martin Prado killed any chance of an extended rally when he threw out Reyes on a perfect throw to the plate on a Carlos Lee single.

"[Prado] never quit on the play and made a throw right on the money," Jones said. "[Brian McCann] made a great deke at home plate and a great pick before he got the tag down. That was a momentum shifter. [Reyes scoring] ties the game and who knows? It might get Tommy out of the game at that point. But it kept us on top and we were able to chip away and finally put it away."

The offense kept up their torrid pace by roughing up Marlins starter Mark Buehrle, who was stuck to a line of six runs on eight hits and four walks over just 4 1/3 innings.

Heyward gave the Braves the lead in the third by uncorking a solo homer to deep right-center, his second in as many days and the first time he has homered on consecutive days since July 21-22, 2011.

Paul Janish worked a one-out walk in the fourth, which resulted in Michael Bourn driving him in on a single. Buehrle would be chased from the game after walking Brian McCann to load the bases and allowing a two-run double off the left field wall to Dan Uggla. Carlos Zambrano, working out of the bullpen, gave up an opposite-field two-run single to Juan Francisco on a seven-pitch at-bat.

The win puts the Braves within 3.5 games of the idle Washington Nationals, who currently lead the NL East.

Tags: Atlanta, Atlanta Braves, Chipper Jones, Dan Uggla, Jason Heyward, Jose Reyes, Juan Francisco, Mark Buehrle, Martin Prado, Miami Marlins, Michael Bourn, MLB

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