Ozuna, Prado help Marlins top Braves 7-3 in 3-game sweep
ATLANTA (AP) — The Miami Marlins rarely play well in Atlanta.
Against this Braves club, Miami could do no wrong.
“To come in and sweep a team that’s always played the Marlins tough and to sweep them here in their ballpark is big,” manager Dan Jennings said.
Marcell Ozuna hit a two-run homer, Martin Prado and Jeff Mathis each had two RBIs and the Marlins beat the reeling Braves 7-3 to finish a three-game sweep on Wednesday.
Moving past the Braves and into third place in the NL East for the first time since May 14, the Marlins earned just their second three-game sweep in Atlanta to improve to 64-101 at Turner Field.
“They’ve beat us up here over the last couple of years,” left fielder Christian Yelich said. “It was good for us, good for the team. We’re just trying to finish up this last month strong.”
The Braves have lost eight straight at home for the first time since opening the 1988 season 0-9 at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium.
Atlanta has dropped 19 of 22 overall and is 12-37 since July 8, worst in the majors. The Braves are 25 games under .500 for first time in 25 years.
“We’re in some kind of a perfect storm right now not scoring very many runs and allowing the other team to score a lot,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “It’s a tough combination.”
Hector Olivera, the Braves’ lone bright spot Wednesday, drove in two runs on his first career hit. The Cuban third baseman, acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers in a three-team trade, gave Atlanta its only lead at 3-2 in the third.
Adam Conley (3-1) won his second straight start, allowing four hits, three runs and three walks with four strikeouts in five innings.
Conley had a 5.18 ERA in his previous five starts, but the left-hander overmatched an Atlanta lineup that’s been outscored 67-19 in its last eight. The Braves hit into seven double plays in the series.
Yelich had four of Miami’s 14 hits and is hitting .324 since May 23.
“It was one of those days where some balls found some holes,” Yelich said. “I put some good some good swings.”
Braves starter Williams Perez (4-6) gave up nine hits, one walk and six runs — four earned — in five innings. He dropped to 0-6 with a 9.50 ERA in his last seven starts.
The Marlins went up 2-0 in the second on Mathis’ RBI double and Conley’s RBI single.
Atlanta took a 3-1 lead in the third. Perez walked and moved to second on Cameron Maybin’s single. On Andrelton Simmons’ groundout, Perez made it to third and Maybin was ruled safe after Gonzalez successfully challenged that second baseman Dee Gordon didn’t tag him.
Olivera followed with a two-run single.
Mathis’ sacrifice fly in the fourth made it 3-all. Miami took a 6-3 lead in the fifth on Prado’s sacrifice fly and Ozuna’s eighth homer.
Prado’s RBI single in the seventh off Edwin Jackson pushed the lead to 7-3 as the Marlins won six of 10 on the road trip.
“I know that moves us into third place, which is a consolation,” Jennings said. “It shows the fight these guys have.”
Miami right fielder Ichiro Suzuki went 2 for 4 to tie Al Simmons for 38th place on the career list with 2,927 hits.
Marlins: SS Adeiny Hechavarria left the game in the second after suffering a tight left hamstring as he ran out a bunt single. Miguel Rojas took his spot.
Braves: RHP Mike Foltynewicz has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation in his ribs. Perez was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to take his place. ... SS Andrelton Simmons went 0 for 4 after missing the last two games with a sore right ankle.
Marlins: Tom Koehler (8-13) is 0-2 with a 14.73 ERA in three career starts against Friday’s opponent, the NL East-leading New York Mets.
Braves: Matt Wisler (5-5) is 1-1 with a 3.86 ERA in two starts against Washington. He has a 5.43 ERA in his other 11 career starts.