51-43
11 - 6
40-53

Johnson hits 2 HRs, Minor homers, Braves beat Cubs

The Associated Press
Johnson hits 2 HRs, Minor homers, Braves beat Cubs
.

View gallery

CHICAGO (AP) -- Chris Johnson and the Atlanta Braves capitalized on a day when the ball was flying at Wrigley Field.

And Mike Minor toughed it out on a day when it was tough to pitch.

Johnson homered twice and Minor hit his second career home run, leading the Atlanta Braves over the Chicago Cubs 11-6 on Saturday.

Johnson and Justin Upton each drove in four runs for the Braves.

Johnson and Minor homered and Upton hit a three-run double as Atlanta scored six times in the fourth inning for a 9-3 lead.

''It's one of those days at Wrigley when you get the ball up in the air and the ball keeps traveling,'' Johnson said. ''Mike battled though. It's a tough place to pitch on days like this. He battled and kept us in the game. We were able to get enough.

Minor (3-5) allowed six runs and 11 hits in six innings, improving to 6-0 in his career against the Cubs.

The Braves won for the second time in seven games. They hit no home runs in their previous six games and one in their last 12 games.

Upton and Justin Heyward had RBI singles in the ninth for Atlanta.

David Carpenter pitched two innings for his third save.

''Today is one of those days we need all the offense we can get because the wind was blowing out, typical Wrigley Field wind blowing out,'' Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. ''We never felt comfortable.''

Chris Coghlan hit two doubles and drove in three runs for the Cubs, who have lost seven of nine.

Edwin Jackson (5-10) lasted just 3 2-3 innings after giving nine runs, seven hits and three home runs.

''It's just one of those embarrassing, horrendous games,'' Jackson said. ''Flat out, there's no other way to put it. Your team does a great job and battles back, and you continually give up the lead. It's pretty much unacceptable.''

The Cubs scored three runs in the fifth to cut the lead to 9-6. One run scored on a passed ball before Coghlan hit a two-run double.

Johnson's second homer of the day and fifth of the season was a two-run shot and made it 5-3 in the fourth. Johnson's third career multihomer game was his first since 2012.

''I'm not trying to hit home runs,'' Johnson said. ''I got the first one pretty good. The second one I think it was just a line drive.''

Minor padded the lead with a solo shot. His other home run came in 2013 against the New York Mets.

''I remember both (home runs),'' Minor said. ''The other one surprised me a little bit because I didn't think I could hit the ball like that. Today, I tried to stay back a little bit more. He threw me, I felt like, the same pitch the first at-bat and I was coming around it. It was one of those days I felt like I was seeing the ball good, got lucky and hit it.''

NOTES: Gonzalez said he was undecided about the order of his rotation after the All-Star break. He said Minor and Alex Wood would be staggered. ''It depends on what happens in the next two days, who's healthy and if somebody needs a few extra days,'' Gonzalez said. ... Braves C Evan Gattis (bulging disk) was scheduled to take part in light drills and batting practice at the Single-A facility in Rome, Georgia, for the second straight day. While encouraged, Gonzalez said no timetable had been set for his return from the disabled list.

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Hockey
Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.
    • Ausmus tabs Verlander for opening day

      Ausmus tabs Verlander for opening day

      Justin Verlander is set to start another opening day for the Detroit Tigers. The rest of the rotation is a little less clear, but manager Brad Ausmus is hoping he'll have plenty of options. Ausmus saw no reason to hold back on announcing that … More »

      AP - Sports - 18 hours ago
    • Bautista: I took less money to stay

      Bautista: I took less money to stay

      Jose Bautista said Saturday he took less money to re-sign with the Toronto Blue Jays but is happy even though he didn't get a long-term contract. The 36-year-old Bautista said he wanted to stay because he's been in Toronto a long time and enjoyed … More »

      AP - Sports - 18 hours ago
    • Bautista says he's happy to be back with Blue Jays despite offers from others

      Bautista says he's happy to be back with Blue Jays despite offers from others

      As Bautista fielded questions from reporters, the young right-handed pitcher sat, mostly quietly, in the back row. Afterwards, he scurried up to the front of the room to give Bautista a bear hug. Toronto's clubhouse leader has returned. … More »

      The Canadian Press - 18 hours ago
    • The 2016 Ultimate MLB Free-Agent Tracker

      The 2016 Ultimate MLB Free-Agent Tracker

      1. Yoenis Cespedes, OF: SIGNED A very good player, no doubt, Cespedes is primed to get paid like a great one because teams are Jean-Ralphio-level flush with cash and need a power-hitting corner outfielder. 2. Edwin Encarnacion, DH/1B: SIGNED Over … More »

      Yahoo Sports US - Sat, 21 Jan, 2017 9:56 AM EST
    • Darvish motivated to prove himself

      Darvish motivated to prove himself

      Yu Darvish marked his five-year anniversary as a Texas Ranger this week. ''It's not much about my contract, but coming back from Tommy John surgery,'' Darvish said through his interpreter at the Rangers' winter banquet Friday night. Darvish is … More »

      AP - Sports - Fri, 20 Jan, 2017 11:43 PM EST