Jose Fernandez said his breaking ball was “horrible” as he was warming up in the bullpen.

It definitely made a quick recovery.

Facing a Braves lineup he beat in the final start of his Rookie of the Year season last September, Fernandez put on another one of his clinics Tuesday night.

The 21-year-old Cuban right-hander equaled a career high with 14 strikeouts on 109 pitches and tossed eight scoreless innings, putting an end to the Marlins’ franchise-worst 0-7 start on the road with a 1-0 victory at Turner Field.

“In general, I think it’s tough to hit his breaking pitches,” catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia said. “I heard a couple guys, [Dan] Uggla for one, saying ‘Man it starts on the inside corner and keeps going on the outside corner.’

“When your curveball is working that well, it’s tough to get comfortable in there. Then you back it up with 98, 99. At the end of the day, that’s tough to hit.”

The first-place Braves (13-7) produced only three hits off Fernandez — a leadoff single by Jason Heyward in the first, and a pair of singles by Chris Johnson and Andrelton Simmons in the eighth. If not for those last two hits and a pitch count that finally eclipsed 100, Marlins manager Mike Redmond said he would have had an agonizing decision to make in the ninth.

Instead, closer Steve Cishek pitched a 1-2-3 ninth against the top of the Braves order to extend his club record to 33 consecutive saves.

Fernandez, who has never pitched past the eighth inning in his 33 career starts, naturally wanted the ball in the ninth. But he didn’t fuss.

“In the heat of the moment I wanted to go out there,” said Fernandez, who didn’t walk a batter — the third time he has done that this season. “But I think [Redmond] saw something. So why not put our closer in the game? He’s one of the best in the game.”

Tuesday’s performance was the sixth time in Fernandez’s career he has produced double-digit strikeouts, the third time he has pitched eight innings and allowed three or fewer hits, and the ninth time in his career he has thrown at least six innings without giving up a run.