Beachy injured, Braves manage one hit in loss

BY foxsports • June 16, 2012

ATLANTA (AP) -- Jason Hammel just wanted go deep into the game and give Baltimore's bullpen some rest.

He nearly got his first no-hitter in the process.

Hammel
pitched a one-hitter for his first career shutout, allowing only Jason
Heyward's two-out single in the seventh inning, and the Orioles beat the
Atlanta Braves 5-0 on Saturday night.

"A no-hitter would've been
nice, but it gave the bullpen the night off," Hammel said. "I heard
from them. Not one bullpen pitch thrown. That's huge because we've been
taxing them pretty good."

There have already been five no-hitters
in the majors this season, including three this month, and Hammel made a
strong bid to add to the list. He struck out eight and walked two,
throwing 65 of 102 pitches for strikes.

Brian Roberts drove in three runs for the Orioles, who have won six of seven.

Atlanta
pitcher Brandon Beachy (5-5) left in the fourth inning with right elbow
soreness. The major leagues' ERA leader allowed no hits and one run,
struck out five and walked one.

The Braves have lost five of six.

Hammel
(7-2) had been struggling on the road, entering with a 1-1 record and a
4.76 ERA in his previous three starts away from Camden Yards. But he
settled down after walking Dan Uggla on four pitches to begin the
second.

Hammel retired the next 17 batters he faced before
walking Uggla again with two out in the seventh. Heyward followed with a
clean single to left field, but Eric Hinske flied out to end the
inning.

Hammel got through the ninth in six pitches, retiring
Michael Bourn on a flyout and Martin Prado and Brian McCann on
groundouts before receiving congratulations from his teammates.

The Baltimore dugout started buzzing as Hammel ended the fifth with a no-hitter intact.

"A
lot of guys get in a different mental frame, but you could tell that he
didn't," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "I think everybody kind
of knew what was going on. Guys were starting to scatter in the dugout,
and I noticed guys standing in the same place, including me."

Acquired
in the February trade that sent Jeremy Guthrie to Colorado, Hammel had
pitched poorly against Atlanta before Saturday, going 0-3 with 9.00 ERA
in five career starts overall and 0-2 with a 11.74 ERA in two starts at
Turner Field.

"I had a terrible track record against the Braves,"
Hammel said. "These guys have given me nightmares, especially here at
Turner Field. I'm very excited to get out of here with a win. They put a
good team on the field every year."

After walking Chris Davis on
six pitches with two outs in the fourth, Beachy stopped in front of the
mound and signaled to catcher Brian McCann that he was injured. He
walked off the field during a mound visit from manager Fredi Gonzalez.

Beachy, who made 40 of his 57 pitches for strikes, retired his first 11 batters. He now has a 2.00 ERA.

"We're
going to get the MRI and hope for the best on the results," Beachy
said. "It's really frustrating. I've had a lot of success when I've felt
good this year. I feel like I'm in a position where I know more. I know
what I'm trying to do and I'm doing it, when I physically can."

Anthony
Varvaro came in and walked Adam Jones and Matt Wieters to load the
bases. Mark Reynolds then hit a two-run single to give the Orioles a 2-0
lead.

Baltimore went ahead 3-0 in the fifth when Roberts' single off Varvaro scored Steve Pearce from second.

Cristhian Martinez, the third Atlanta pitcher, worked a scoreless sixth before Roberts lined a two-run single to right.

Hammel,
who took a no-hitter into the eighth inning April 8 before beating the
Minnesota Twins 3-1, said his bullpen session gave him no idea he would
one-hit the Braves.

"I actually had a terrible bullpen, believe
it or not," he said. "I was kind of feeling my way through the first two
innings and then obviously just carried it on and found a pretty good
groove."

NOTES: It was Hammel's second career complete
game and first since he pitched eight innings in the Rockies' 1-0 loss
at the Los Angeles Dodgers on July 1, 2009. ... Bourn went 0 for 4 to
snap a career-high 14-game hitting streak. ... Gonzalez said before the
game that Chipper Jones, who was held out with a swollen left knee, will
be in the lineup at 3B on Sunday. ... Gonzalez likely will use Jones as
a designated hitter when Atlanta visits the New York Yankees and Boston
Red Sox next week. ... Atlanta 1B Freddie Freeman was out of the lineup
with a swollen knuckle on his left index finger. ... Showalter said RF
Nick Markakis, who underwent right wrist surgery on June 1, will visit a
doctor on Friday for a standard checkup. Markakis was initially
expected to miss three to four weeks. ... Roberts is expected to get a
standard day off Sunday with 2B Robert Andino starting in his place.


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