PHOENIX (AP) — The momentum of Arizona’s three-game sweep in Colorado didn’t carry over at home against Atlanta for the Diamondbacks.
A solid outing by starter Brandon McCarthy didn’t help, either.
“He gave us a chance to win,” Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said. “We just couldn’t get enough runs.”
Julio Teheran pitched seven solid innings and Craig Kimbrel got the final four outs to become the Braves’ career saves leader in a 5-2 victory over the Diamondbacks on Friday night.
Kimbrel earned his 16th save of the season (in 18 tries) and 155th of his career. That’s one more than John Smoltz.
“I’ve been a part of a lot of good teams and had a lot of opportunities,” Kimbrel said. “Having the chance my first full season to be a closer, that doesn’t happen very often and that’s why we’re sitting here talking today, because I had that opportunity a lot of guys don’t have.”
Jason Heyward drove in three runs, two with a home run, and Andrelton Simmons doubled in a run for the Braves.
Teheran (6-3) gave up two runs and five hits to win his fourth straight decision.
Didi Gregorius became the first Diamondback to hit leadoff home runs in consecutive starts. He did it Wednesday in Colorado, sat out Thursday’s game, then did it again Friday.
“He is a really good pitcher. You have to give him that,” Gregorius said of Teheran. “I had two strikes so I had to choke up and tried to get a good pitch. He threw me a fastball inside and luckily I hit it out. I was just trying to out a good swing on it and it went out.”
McCarthy (1-8) allowed three runs and nine hits in 6 1-3 innings, striking out nine and walking one.
McCarthy singled in the tying run in the fifth, his first career RBI.
The Braves broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh when, with one out, Heyward drew the only walk McCarthy allowed. Simmons lashed a double to the corner in left, scoring Heyward from first.
The Atlanta leadoff hitter used his long arms to connect with a ball that was high and outside and drove it to the opposite field.
McCarthy said the pitch was 6 or 7 inches off the plate.
“It was a pitch I don’t expect to get hit at all,” he said. “It was right where I wanted it. It was a hard four-seamer up and away and I wanted to use it to establish something else. He took a good swing at it and hit a home run. I was pretty surprised.”
They added another run in the ninth on Heyward’s RBI single.
Right fielder Gerardo Parra robbed Simmons of an extra-base hit and probably saved a run with a diving grab in the ninth.
Atlanta took the lead in the fifth when Jordan Schafer doubled over third base to start the inning. He scored on Heyward’s home run to left that made it 2-1.
Gregorius, called up from Triple-A Reno on Tuesday, opened the game with a shot just over the fence in right.
Teheran didn’t allow another hit until Peralta, another recent arrival from the minors, led off the fifth with a ground-rule double. Teheran retired the next two batters, but McCarthy – 2 for 23 for the season to that point – slapped a single between shortstop and third to bring Peralta home and tie it 2-2.
Ex-Diamondback Justin Upton, greeted with a mix of boos and cheers, struck out three times against McCarthy, then flied out to the fence in right and drove in a run with a bloop single in the ninth.
NOTES: In the second day of the amateur draft, Arizona chose OF Matt Railey of North Florida Christian Academy. He’s committed to Florida State. … Braves RHP Jordan Walden, recovering from a strained left hamstring, began a rehab assignment Thursday night for Triple-A Gwinnett against Columbus, facing four batters in two-thirds inning, giving up a run and two hits. He struck out the first three batters, but the third reached on a wild pitch. The next batter homered. … On Saturday night, the Braves have RHP Ervin Santana (5-2, 4.10 ERA) facing LHP Wade Miley (3-6, 4.85).