Cubs
Braves
5 - 16 Final
  for this game

Heyward's 3-run homer helps Braves beat Cubs 16-5

Apr 6, 2010 - 12:24 AM By CHARLES ODUM AP Sports Writer

ATLANTA(AP) -- His face and head covered in shaving cream and his first home run ball stashed safely away, Jason Heyward stood in front of his locker and beamed.

"I had a blast," he said.

He stole the show on opening day.

Minutes after catching the ceremonial first pitch from Hank Aaron, Heyward hit a three-run homer in his first major league at-bat to spark the Braves to a 16-5 opening win Monday over Carlos Zambrano and the Chicago Cubs.

Heyward, who also had a run-scoring single in the eighth, was 2 for 5 with four RBIs.

"It was the first of many career highlights for him," said Atlanta's Chipper Jones. "That was impressive, that was very impressive."

Braves fans in the sellout crowd eagerly embraced Heyward, from Henry County, about 30 minutes south of Atlanta.

Fans chanted "Let's go, Heyward!" as he confidently took two pitches in his first-inning at-bat, then sent a fastball from Zambrano into the Braves' bullpen behind the right-field wall on his first swing, sending the crowd over the top.

"I don't know that I've ever heard this stadium that loud," Jones said.

Added Heyward when asked how he felt as he ran around the bases: "I felt my legs but I couldn't hear myself think, it was so loud."

After the game, Braves reliever Peter Moylan crept behind a crowd of reporters and hit the rookie with a towel full of shaving cream.

"I guess shaving cream is a good thing," Heyward said with a smile.

Yunel Escobar drove in a career-high five runs as Zambrano gave up eight runs in 1 1-3 innings, matching the shortest of 239 career starts.

Marlon Byrd, playing his first game with the Cubs, hit a three-run homer in the first inning and Aramis Ramirez added a two-run drive in the third.

Derek Lowe (1-0) gave up five runs, five hits and three walks in six innings before a sellout crowd of 53,081, a record for a day game in Atlanta and was the fourth-largest overall in Atlanta history.

Brian McCann hit a homer in the second, when the Braves knocked out Zambrano (0-1), but opening day belonged to Heyward.

"He's good," Zambrano said. "Anybody can be good with two balls and no strikes, but you have to give him credit."

The 20-year-old Heyward became the sixth Braves player to homer in his debut, the fourth to do so in his first plate appearance. Jordan Schafer also did it last season.

Heyward answered cheers from the fans by tipping his cap at the edge of the dugout.

Heyward (6-foot-5, 240) won the starting job in right field despite playing only 50 games above Class A in his quick rise through the minor leagues. He was selected baseball's top prospect by Baseball America after hitting .323 with 17 homers and 63 RBIs at three minor league stops in 2009, and was put on the major league roster by the Braves just last Saturday.

"Jason had a spectacular day, really," said Braves manager Bobby Cox. "He'll have his struggles, probably, like any other 20-year-old in the big leagues, but he's a very talented kid. And when he's not hitting, he's going to help us in the outfield. He's a very gifted athlete."

Atlanta sent 10 batters to the plate in both the first and seventh innings.

"It was something of an embarrassing loss," said Cubs manager Lou Piniella. "Never did I anticipate we'd give up 16 runs on opening day, not in my wildest dreams."

In the first, Chipper Jones drove in Melky Cabrera when his shallow fly ball fell between shortstop Ryan Theriot and Byrd in center for a single. Escobar added a two-run single before Heyward's line-drive homer.

Making his sixth straight opening day start for the Cubs, Zambrano gave up six hits and two walks with one strikeout.

"I left some pitches over the middle," Zambrano said. "When you do that at this level, you're going to get crushed."

Braves center fielder Nate McLouth made running catches of drives hit by Ramirez in the first and Derrek Lee in the fifth. McLouth was credited with a diving catch of a ball hit by Byrd in the left-center gap in the sixth, though a replay showed the ball popped out of McLouth's glove when he hit the ground.

As umpires called out Byrd, McLouth threw the ball back to Escobar, whose throw to first base forced out Ramirez.

Piniella argued the ruling that McLouth made the catch. The umpires huddled but did not overturn the original call.

Escobar had a three-run double, and pinch-hitter Eric Hinske added a run-scoring triple off Jeff Samardzija in the seventh. Samardzija walked three batters in the six-run inning.

Six Chicago pitchers combined for eight walks.

"The thing that was so upsetting was we didn't walk people in spring training," Piniella said. "I complimented our pitchers on that."

Right-hander Takashi Saito and left-handed closer Billy Wagner pitched perfect innings in their Atlanta debuts to end the game.

NOTES: McCann received his 2009 Silver Slugger award before the game. ... New Cubs owner Tom Ricketts and his brother, Todd, attended the game. ... Sean Marshall had five strikeouts in 2 2-3 perfect innings behind Zambrano. ... Zambrano also lasted only 1 1-3 innings against Pittsburgh on Sept. 4, 2006. ... The other Braves to homer in their first plate appearances were Joe Harrington (1895); Johnny Bates (1906) and Jermaine Dye (1996).






  • 45
    roots
    MattDOOM777 Added 5 roots

    Cubs 5, Braves 16  FinalApr 6 4:40 AM
  • 40
    roots
    #1 Cards Fan Added 5 roots

    Cubs 5, Braves 16  FinalApr 5 7:40 PM
  • 35
    roots
    ltcmdrdata Added 5 roots

    Cubs 5, Braves 16  FinalApr 5 7:09 PM


  • Braves 16, Cubs 5 - FINAL
    CHICAGO CUBS ab r h rbi bb so lob avg
    R Theriot ss 4 0 0 0 0 1 1 .000
    K Fukudome rf 3 2 2 0 1 0 0 .667
    D Lee 1b 3 1 0 0 1 1 2 .000
    A Ramirez 3b 4 1 2 2 0 1 2 .500
    M Byrd cf 4 1 1 3 0 1 1 .250
    A Soriano lf 4 0 0 0 0 2 0 .000
    M Fontenot

    Apr 5 6:59 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY OMAR INFANTE SCORED TROY GLAUS
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, N MCLOUTH ON SECOND, J HEYWARD ON THIRD, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 16 BOTTOM,8TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M CABRERA (.000, 0-FOR-4, BB)

    Cubs 5, Braves 16  Bot 8, 0 OutsApr 5 6:50 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON HEYWARD SCORED BROOKS CONRAD
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J HEYWARD ON FIRST, T GLAUS ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 15 BOTTOM,8TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: N MCLOUTH (.333, 1-FOR-3, BB)

    Cubs 5, Braves 15  Bot 8, 0 OutsApr 5 6:44 PM
  • ProfessorPlum THrilled for former Rome Brave Jason Heyward! Hits a 3-run homer his 1st official MLB at bat! good on ya, mate!

    Cubs 5, Braves 14  Bot 8, 0 OutsApr 5 6:40 PM
  • 30
    roots
    ProfessorPlum Added 5 roots

    Cubs 5, Braves 14  Top 8, 0 OutsApr 5 6:35 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MARTIN PRADO SCORED ERIC HINSKE
    SITUATION: 6 RUNS IN, M PRADO ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 14 BOTTOM,7TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: C JONES (.333, 1-FOR-3, BB, RBI)

    Cubs 5, Braves 14  Bot 7, 0 OutsApr 5 6:24 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY ERIC HINSKE SCORED JASON HEYWARD
    SITUATION: 5 RUNS IN, E HINSKE ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 13 BOTTOM,7TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M CABRERA (.000, 0-FOR-3, BB)

    Cubs 5, Braves 13  Bot 7, 0 OutsApr 5 6:20 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY DERREK LEE ALLOWED YUNEL ESCOBAR TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, J HEYWARD ON SECOND, 0 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 12 BOTTOM,7TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: N MCLOUTH (.500, 1-FOR-2, BB)

    Cubs 5, Braves 12  Bot 7, 0 OutsApr 5 6:18 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY YUNEL ESCOBAR SCORED TROY GLAUS, BRIAN MCCANN AND
    CHIPPER JONES
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, Y ESCOBAR ON SECOND, 0 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ATLANTA 11 BOTTOM,7TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: J HEYWARD (.333, 1-FOR-3, HR, 3 RBI)

    Cubs 5, Braves 11  Bot 7, 0 OutsApr 5 6:16 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY ARAMIS RAMIREZ (1) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 3RD OFF DEREK LOWE SCORED KOSUKE FUKUDOME.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5, ATLANTA 8
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: M BYRD (1.000, 1-FOR-1, HR, 3 RBI)

    Cubs 5, Braves 8  Top 3, 0 OutsApr 5 5:05 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY BRIAN MCCANN (1) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN THE
    2ND OFF CARLOS ZAMBRANO.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3, ATLANTA 8
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: T GLAUS (.000, 0-FOR-1)

    Cubs 3, Braves 8  Bot 2, 0 OutsApr 5 4:53 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY CARLOS ZAMBRANO ALLOWED MARTIN PRADO TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3
    ATLANTA 7 BOTTOM,2ND
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: B MCCANN (1.000, 1-FOR-1)

    Cubs 3, Braves 7  Bot 2, 0 OutsApr 5 4:53 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    THREE-RUN HOME RUN BY JASON HEYWARD (1) TO RIGHT CENTER WITH
    1 OUT IN THE 1ST OFF CARLOS ZAMBRANO SCORED YUNEL ESCOBAR
    AND BRIAN MCCANN.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3, ATLANTA 6
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: N MCLOUTH (-, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cubs 3, Braves 6  Bot 1, 0 OutsApr 5 4:34 PM


  • NL
    AT ATLANTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY YUNEL ESCOBAR SCORED CHIPPER JONES AND MARTIN
    PRADO
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, Y ESCOBAR ON FIRST, B MCCANN ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 3
    ATLANTA 3 BOTTOM,1ST
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: J HEYWARD (-, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cubs 3, Braves 3  Bot 1, 0 OutsApr 5 4:32 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHICAGO CUBS 3 3 2 0
    ATLANTA 0 0 0 (BOT 1)


    CURRENT PITCHERS: CHN - CARLOS ZAMBRANO
    ATL - DEREK LOWE

    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M CABRERA (-, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
    M PRADO (-, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
    C JONES (-, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cubs 3, Braves 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsApr 5 4:20 PM
  • 25
    roots
    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    Cubs vs. BravesApr 5 9:55 AM
  • 20
    roots
    Jmlk17 Added 5 roots

    Cubs vs. BravesApr 5 1:35 AM
  • 15
    roots
    geedeebee49 Added 5 roots

    Cubs vs. BravesApr 3 9:15 AM
  • 10
    roots
    LMPtG1 Added 10 roots

    Cubs vs. BravesMar 4 11:21 AM