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Teherán dazzles, Freeman walks off to sweep Reds 1-0 in extras

Julio Teherán and the Braves bullpen combined to shut out the Reds for 10 innings, and Freddie Freeman delivered a walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th.

Scott Cunningham

Today's matchup between Julio Teherán and Johnny Cueto in the series finale between the Braves and Reds was billed as a duel of two aces, and the two righties did not disappoint.

Teherán and Cueto combined for 16 scoreless innings, with each departing after eight innings of work and no runs allowed.

Cueto pitched brilliantly for Cincinnati, striking out 11 Braves while walking 3 and allowing 3 hits, lowering his ERA to a stellar 1.15 mark. He had all of his pitches working and was highly deceptive, including juxtaposing a two-seam fastball and a cutter, while working in a filthy changeup, that gave Braves hitters fits all afternoon. The only Brave who appeared to have Cueto's number on the day was Justin Upton, who ripped a single up the middle in the first inning and doubled down the left-field line in the sixth. Andrelton Simmons had the only other hit off of Cueto, a ground rule double.

Teherán didn't miss quite as many bats as Cueto, however, the only hits he allowed on the day were a Billy Hamilton bunt single (Gerald Laird promptly threw out Hamilton attempting to steal second, with the help of a fantastic scoop and tag by Andrelton Simmons), a missed fly ball by B.J. Upton off of the bat of Brayan Peña that was ruled a double, and a leadoff Ryan Ludwick double that appeared to be major trouble in the top of the 5th that appeared to be major trouble, especially after Brayan Peña hit a deep fly ball to right that advanced Ludwick to third. However, Teherán bore down and struck out Zack Cozart and Cueto to end the inning, and finally departed after 8 innings, 5 strikeouts, and 94 pitches.

After Jordan Walden pitched a 3 up, 3 down ninth and Sam LeCure pitched a drama-free ninth for the Reds, David Carpenter entered for Atlanta in the top of the 10th, when things began to get interesting. Although he got Todd Frazier to strike out and Brayan Peña to fly out, he allowed singles to Ryan Ludwick and Zack Cozart, prompting Fredi González to turn to Ian Thomas to face Roger Bernadina in a high-pressure situation. Thomas induced a weak pop-up in foul territory that settled into Freddie Freeman's glove to escape the jam.

Former Braves farmhand J.J. Hoover took over in the bottom of the tenth inning, and looked to be in control, inducing a Gerald Laird lineout and an Evan Gattis strikeout. However, a sharp single up the middle by Jason Heyward and an infield single from the glasses-clad B.J. Upton put the Braves in business. Reds bench coach Jay Bell, managing in Bryan Price's stead after Price and Homer Bailey were ejected for arguing a blown replay call in the bottom of the 1st inning, opted to bring in lefty Manny Parra to face Freddie Freeman. Freeman made him pay, delivering a walk-off single that dropped beyond the range of Billy Hamilton in deep center field to bring in Heyward for a Braves win.

Ian Thomas picked up the win for the Braves, the first of his Major League career. After sweeping Cincinnati, the Braves are now 17-7 (.708) and lead the NL East by 3.5 games over the second-place New York Mets. They'll have an off-day tomorrow in Miami, and then begin a three-game set against the Marlins on Tuesday night, as Alex Wood and José Fernandez do battle once again.

Source: FanGraphs

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