Evan Gattis extended the power surge that has carried him through the first weeks of his career, and Tim Hudson assumed the appearance of an ace as the red-hot Braves notched their eighth consecutive victory with Saturday afternoon's 3-1 win over the Nationals at Nationals Park. Gattis' two-run homer off Stephen Strasburg in the third inning proved to be enough for Hudson, who limited the Nationals to four hits and one run over seven innings. His only damage came courtesy of Danny Espinosa's two-out home run in the fifth inning. Eric O'Flaherty and Craig Kimbrel preserved Hudson's strong effort by keeping the Nationals scoreless in the final two innings. The Braves have won the first two games of this three-game set against their National League East rivals. They have won 10 of their first 11 games for the first time since their 1994 club began the season with a 13-1 record. Like in Friday night's 10-inning series-opening victory, the Braves took advantage of a throwing error which Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman committed after fielding a grounder hit by his childhood friend Justin Upton. After Upton reached courtesy of Zimmerman's errant throw to first base with two outs in the third inning, Gattis drilled Strasburg's 96-mph fastball over the Braves' bullpen located beyond the left-center-field wall. The 26-year-old rookie catcher has four home runs through the first 30 at-bats of his career. Gattis' home run accounted for the only damage incurred by Strasburg, who surrendered the two unearned runs and five hits over six innings. The Nationals right-hander has gone 3-4 with a 3.59 ERA in eight career starts against the Braves. He has gone 19-8 with a 2.81 ERA in his 40 other career starts. Other than the Gattis home run, Strasburg limited the Braves to four singles, including two recorded by Hudson. The veteran pitcher's third-inning single provided him hits in three consecutive at-bats dating back to his previous start. He now has 10 career multi-hit games.
Tim Hudson outduels Stephen Strasburg as Braves win 8th straight
MLB.com | Apr 13