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Atlanta Braves Claim First Spring Training Victory As Dan Uggla Homers

The Atlanta Braves got pounded over the weekend by the Detroit Tigers to begin the 2012 Spring Training season, but the club got back on track on Monday afternoon against the Houston Astros. The club only had a few of their projected starters in the lineup, but a solid offensive effort and decent work from the pitching staff led Atlanta to a 10-5 victory.

Jair Jurrjens made the start and all eyes were on the righty as he attempted to come back from a knee injury. The 25-year old worked two innings and allowed two runs on three hits and a walk. He did not strike out anyone, and his fastball was clocked in the upper-80's. Robert Fish, a rare Rule 5 selection for the team, worked a scoreless inning in relief and appears to be in the running for one of the final bullpen jobs.

Todd Redmond pitched two innings and gave up two runs, allowing Houston to take a brief lead in the sixth, but was credited with a win because of an offensive outburst in the seventh. Cory Gearrin worked a perfect eighth inning, and pitching prospect Zeke Spruill allowed two hits and a walk as he closed out the game in the ninth.

Dan Uggla hit a big home run to left field to add to an early Braves lead in the third, and also doubled and drew a walk. Michael Bourn and shortstop prospect Andrelton Simmons both tripled, while third base prospect Joey Terdoslavich roped out two doubles and drew a walk. Jason Heyward came through in the first inning with a two-out, bases loaded single.

With their first exhibition win in the books, the club will host the Washington Nationals on Tuesday afternoon. Top-prospect Bryce Harper is expected to play the final few innings of the game.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.