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McCann, Jones homer as Braves top Nats

Sep 2, 2011 - 3:51 AM Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Brian McCann and Chipper Jones both hit solo home runs to back six solid innings from Tim Hudson, as the Atlanta Braves earned a 5-2 victory over the Washington Nationals in the rubber match of a three-game series.

Hudson (14-8) allowed one run on five hits to record the win. He walked two and struck out five.

"Very good outing," said Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez. "We swung the bats and did just enough to get him some runs and some support early."

Alex Gonzalez had a pair of RBI for the Braves, who have won nine of 12 and lead the NL Wild Card race by a comfortable 8 1/2 games.

A night after setting the major league rookie saves record, Craig Kimbrel struck out the side in the ninth to record his 42nd rescue of the season.

Chien-Ming Wang (2-3) lasted 5 2/3 innings, surrendering four runs on seven hits to suffer the loss.

Jayson Werth hit a home run for the Nationals, who have dropped eight of their last nine games.

With two down in the home first, McCann gave the Braves a 1-0 lead with his 23rd homer of the season.

Jones' homer -- a leadoff shot in the second -- marked his 15th of the season and the 451st of his career. He is now just one home run shy of tying Carl Yastrzemski for 33rd on the all-time list.

Dan Uggla drew a one-out walk in the fourth, advanced to second on a Jones groundout and scored on Eric Hinske's single, giving the Braves a 3-0 lead.

The Nationals, who left runners at the corners in the second and wasted one- out doubles by Ian Desmond and Wilson Ramos in the third and fifth innings, respectively, finally got on the board with Werth's leadoff shot in the sixth.

A half-inning later, Uggla doubled, moved to third on Jason Heyward's force out and scored on Gonzalez's base hit to left.

Eric O'Flaherty tossed a 1-2-3 seventh for the Braves before Jonny Venters allowed the Nationals to load the bases with one down in the eighth. Jones' error on a Michael Morse grounder made it a 4-2 game, but Venters struck out Jesus Flores and Danny Espinosa to limit the damage.

Gonzalez followed a Heyward triple with a sac fly in the bottom half to cap the scoring.

"I think we need to finish strong this last month," said Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman. "If we could get up to .500, finish a little bit above .500, I think that would be a great goal."

Game Notes

Hudson is 13-3 with in 22 career outings against the Nationals... Washington outfielder Laynce Nix left the game in the third inning after straining his right groin...Prior to the game, the Braves recalled pitcher Anthony Varvaro and catcher J.C. Boscan from Triple-A Gwinnett and outrighted pitcher Dustin Richardson to Gwinnett...The Nationals activated pitcher Doug Slaten from the 15-day disabled list on Thursday.

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    Nationals 2, Braves 5  FinalSep 2 12:00 PM

    ATLANTA: 5

    Sep 1 10:00 PM

  • Alex Gonzalez sacrifice fly to center scored Jason Heyward with two out. None on and Jonny Venters due up.

    Nationals 2, Braves 5  Bot 8, 2 OutsSep 1 9:50 PM

  • Michael Morse reached first on Chipper Jones's fielding error scoring Jonny Gomes with one out. On the play, Ryan Zimmerman advances to second and Jayson Werth advances to third. Bases loaded and Todd Coffey due up.

    Nationals 2, Braves 4  Top 8, 1 OutSep 1 9:39 PM
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    Nationals 2, Braves 4  Top 8, 1 OutSep 1 9:39 PM

  • Alex Gonzalez single to left scored Dan Uggla with two out. On the play, Jason Heyward advances to second. Runners on first and second and Tim Hudson due up.

    Nationals 1, Braves 4  Bot 6, 2 OutsSep 1 8:56 PM

  • Jayson Werth lead-off Home Run (17) to left. Ryan Zimmerman due up.

    Nationals 1, Braves 3  Top 6, 0 OutsSep 1 8:40 PM

  • Eric Hinske single to right scored Dan Uggla with two out. Runner on first and Jason Heyward due up.

    Nationals 0, Braves 3  Bot 4, 2 OutsSep 1 8:17 PM

  • Chipper Jones lead-off Home Run (15) to left center. Eric Hinske due up.

    Nationals 0, Braves 2  Bot 2, 0 OutsSep 1 7:43 PM

  • Brian McCann two-out, solo Home Run (23) to right. Dan Uggla due up.

    Nationals 0, Braves 1  Bot 1, 2 OutsSep 1 7:28 PM

    ATLANTA: 0
    Top 1, 0 Outs

    Sep 1 7:11 PM
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    Nationals vs. BravesSep 1 4:23 PM
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    Nationals vs. BravesMar 31 2:29 PM