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Braves limit Nats to just two hits in win
VIERA, Fla. | Tommy Hanson is having the type of spring the Atlanta Braves want to see out of him.
Hanson threw three hitless innings on Sunday, his second shutout appearance of the spring, to lead the Braves to a 5-0 victory against the Washington Nationals on Sunday.
“I feel like I’m ahead of what I’ve been the last couple of springs, as far as how my body feels and how my arm feels,” Hanson said. “I felt really good with my fastball. I felt really fast. I think the main thing for me is to find my fastball command and just get comfortable with hitters in there.”
Hanson, Atlanta’s projected No. 4 starter, walked one. He has given up just two hits in five innings this spring.
The rest of Atlanta’s pitching staff was equal to the task, holding the Nationals to two hits.
Cristhian Martinez and Jairo Asencio each threw two innings, while Jonny Venters and Arodys Vizcaino added one each.
“Martinez, every time we run him out there, puts up zeros. He runs zeros and his changeup is good,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “Venters continues to impress. We’ve got kids in the back end that are really impressive the way they throw strikes. Asencio and Vizcaino come in and they pound the strike zone. Only good things can happen when you don’t put anybody on base.”
Chipper Jones had a double and scored for Atlanta. Jason Heyward got a hit, was hit by a pitch and walked. Wilkin Ramirez added a two-run single in the eighth for the Braves.
Nationals starter Ross Detwiler also had an impressive outing, allowing one unearned run in three innings. He struck out five, including the final four he faced.
Heyward walked with one out in the second and tried to score on a double by Alex Gonzalez, but was cut down on the relay from center fielder Nyjer Morgan to second baseman Danny Espinosa to catcher Wilson Ramos.
“If that’s during the season, I’m scoring easily,” Heyward said.
Gonzalez scored when the next batter, Freddie Freeman, hit a grounder to shortstop Ian Desmond, who made a bad throw to first.
Laynce Nix singled for Washington’s first hit in the fifth and Brian Bixler added a single in the ninth.
Bryce Harper, the No. 1 pick in last year’s amateur draft, lined out in his only at-bat for Washington.
NOTES: Nationals 1B Adam LaRoche missed the game with soreness in his left shoulder. He remains day-to-day. … Detwiler celebrated his 25th birthday. … Grammy-winning musician Kenny G played the national anthem.
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