PHOENIX (Ticker) --
pitched 7 1/3 strong innings and
made a questionable managerial decision in the eighth as the
posted a 6-2 victory over the
Working into the eighth inning for the first time this season, Byrd (4-3) entered the frame with a 3-1 lead. But he surrendered back-to-back singles to
to start the inning.
Pedrique surprisingly allowed reliever
- the Diamondbacks' best bunting pitcher - to sacrifice, moving the runners into scoring position.
came on and retired
on a long fly ball to center field that went for a sacrifice fly.
relieved Martin and struck out
to end the inning and preserve a 3-2 lead.
Byrd gave up two runs and five hits. The veteran righthander struck out four without a walk and departed after throwing 56 of 79 pitches for strikes.
"I felt good," Byrd said. "McCracken hit a home run, first at-bat. I seemed to settle down after that. They hit some balls to people when they hit it hard. I was fortunate enough to take us into the eighth."
"That's one of the toughest decisions I had all year, to be honest," Cox said about removing Byrd from the game. "McCracken got him for a home run and that kind of did it for me."
delivered a two-run single in the third, giving the Braves a 3-1 lead.
added three hits for surging Atlanta (62-47), which won for the 13th time in 15 games to move a season-high 15 games over .500.
"It's just been great team wins every night," Braves second baseman
said. "I just can't say enough for the whole ballclub. There's a lot of season left and anything can happen. We just need to keep it going."
(0-5) surrendered three runs and six hits in six innings. He walked five and struck out five.
It was the first time in five career starts that the 21-year-old Gonzalez made it past the fifth inning.
"We felt good about what we saw from Edgar today," Pedrique said. "He threw the ball a lot better. Better poise, tempo was a lot better. He stayed aggressive most of the time and we could tell he made some adjustments today."