Dan Uggla continued his trend of hitting well at Dodger Stadium with a two-home run outburst in the series finale Sunday. He and Freddie Freeman provided Mike Minor with plenty of support in the 8-1 win, securing a split of the four-game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Uggla has maintained an attitude of ignoring his ugly stats so far this season and focusing on turning around his year, and he responded with a perfect day at the plate, drawing two walks to go with his two homers.
The first came in the top of the third when Matt Magill loaded the bases with a walk to Jason Heyward, Justin Upton reaching on an error and a single by Freeman. Evan Gattis tied the game 1-1 with a sacrifice fly, setting up Uggla's bomb to left field.
Walks haunted Magill again in the fourth inning, particularly when he issued a one-out walk to Minor. Heyward followed two batters later with his first of two hits before Upton drew another walk. Freeman took that opportunity to drive a bases-clearing double to center past a diving Skip Schumaker to chase Magill from the game.
Magill's replacement, Ronald Belisario, didn't fare any better with Uggla. Belisario planted a 96 mile-per-hour fastball over the heart of the plate on a 2-2 count, which Uggla blasted over the left field wall.
That was all the offensive support Minor needed over his six innings of work, though it appeared at first that he wouldn't make it close to that deep into the game. Minor needed 31 pitches to get out of the first inning when Yasiel Puig and Nick Punto singled and Adrian Gonzalez walked to load the bases with no outs. After getting Scott Van Slyke to ground into a force at home and striking out Luis Cruz, Schumaker drove in the Dodgers' only run on a dribbled infield hit up the third base line.
That prompted Roger McDowell to pay Minor a visit, resulting in a pop out from Tim Federowicz to end the inning with the Dodgers managing only one run.
Minor coasted for the rest of his outing, finishing with six innings and one run on six hits, walking three and striking out six. It was his eighth win of the year, putting him behind only Patrick Corbin, Adam Wainwright and Jordan Zimmerman for most in the National League.
The Braves now visit the San Diego Padres for a three-game series before having their first day off all month.
Adrian Gonzalez, Atlanta, Atlanta Braves, Baseball, Dan Uggla, Freddie Freeman, Jason Heyward, Los Angeles Dodgers, Mike Minor, MLB, Yasiel Puig
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