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Adam Morgan, Philadelphia Phillies drop Atlanta Braves to 1-16 at home

By Stan Awtrey, The Sports Xchange
Adam Morgan, Philadelphia Phillies drop Atlanta Braves to 1-16 at home
Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Jeanmar Gomez is congratulated by catcher Cameron Rupp. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

ATLANTA -- It took Adam Morgan four tries, but he finally beat his hometown team.

Morgan, who grew up in the northwest Atlanta suburb of Marietta, pitched seven strong innings to help the Philadelphia Phillies to a 3-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday at Turner Field.

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The left-hander allowed four hits, walked one and struck out four. Morgan (1-0) lost all three of his three previous starts against the Braves and admitted it was nice to have a decision go his way.

"It was great," Morgan said. "Too bad my mom couldn't be here, but I had some people here and was able to throw in front of them."

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While his mom watched the broadcast on her computer from Florida, Morgan threw only 90 pitches and could have started the eighth inning, but manager Pete Mackanin wanted the second-year player to leave on a positive note after back-to-back lackluster starts.

"He was good, obviously," Mackanin said. "He pitched inside to right-handers, good cutters and sliders."

Morgan agreed and said, "When I can do that, it opens up the other side of the plate."

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Phillies closer Jeanmar Gomez allowed a solo home run to Freddie Freeman -- his fifth -- to lead off the ninth inning and a two-out pinch hit to Kelly Johnson before retiring pinch-hitter Reid Brignac on a fly ball to end the game and secure his league-leading 12th save.

Philadelphia's last seven wins have been by one run, the first time that's happened since 1942.

"To do that you need luck and you need to be good," Mackanin said. "I think we're good and lucky. I'm not saying were the best, but we're doing things right."

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It was the fifth straight loss for Atlanta, which dropped to 1-16 at home after its 11th consecutive setback at Turner Field. Atlanta is only the second team in history to lose 16 of their first 17 games at home. Atlanta's 7-24 start in the worst in franchise history.

"You want to win games at home for your fans, because they're wearing it just like we are," Gonzalez said. "You'd like to win anywhere you can and we'd like to win at home more than we have."

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The Phillies' offense was led by third baseman Maikel Franco, who arrived at the park early for extra batting practice. He was 3-for-4 including his seventh homer, a long solo shot in the eighth inning, and scored two runs.

Atlanta starter Matt Wisler (1-3) pitched eight innings for the second consecutive start. He allowed three runs on eight hits and two walks, with two strikeouts.

"The kid pitched eight innings and gives up three and most of the time that gives you a chance," Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "But the way we're swinging it, it doesn't give you anything but a loss."

Philadelphia took a 2-1 lead in the fifth when Cesar Hernandez singled with two outs to score Peter Bourjos, who led off the inning with a double.

The Phillies scored a run in the fourth inning. Franco singled and went to third on a hit-and-run single by Carlos Ruiz. Freddy Galvis got the run home with a sacrifice fly to right field that didn't draw a throw from Nick Markakis.

The Braves got the run back in the bottom half. Ender Inciarte and Freeman were on the corners with no outs with consecutive singles, and Inciarte scored when Tyler Flowers hit into a double play.

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NOTES: Atlanta recalled LHP Ian Krol from Triple-A Gwinnett and activated INF Gordon Beckham (hamstring) from the disabled list. Beckham was in the starting lineup. The Braves designated OF Matt Tuiasosopo for assignment and placed RHP Jim Johnson (right groin strain) on the 15-day DL. The Braves made two acquisitions, getting C Anthony Recker from the Indians and OF Mel Rojas Jr. from the Pirates for cash. Recker was assigned to Gwinnett and Rojas to Double-A Mississippi. ... The Phillies announced that RHP Michael Mariot (right ankle strain) will start a rehab assignment with Double-A Reading, while LHP Mario Hollands (Tommy John surgery in April 2015) will join Class A Clearwater. ... Starting pitchers for Wednesday are Atlanta RHP Jhoulys Chacin (1-2, 5.40 ERA) vs. Philadelphia RHP Jerad Eickhoff (1-4, 4.21).

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