Atlanta Braves right fielder Justin Upton (8) hugs first baseman Freddie Freeman (5) after a home run against the Colorado Rockies on Thursday at Turner Field. (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)
ATLANTA — Rookie Julio Teheran matched his career best with 11 strikeouts and added two hits as the Atlanta Braves beat the Colorado Rockies 11-2 Thursday to complete a four-game sweep and extend their winning streak to seven games.
Teheran (8-5) struck out the side three times and escaped from two bases-loaded situations with only one run scoring. The right-hander gave up five hits and one run over five innings and left after throwing 103 pitches.
Colorado rookie Chad Bettis (0-1) allowed five runs and six hits over five innings to lose his major league debut.
Atlanta right fielder Justin Upton had two homers, Nos. 17 and 18, and drove in five runs. It’s the second multi-homer game this season for Upton and the sixth of his career.
Braves third baseman Chris Johnson went 3-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to 10 games and improve his league-leading average to .346.
The Braves jumped on Bettis for two runs in the first inning. Upton hit a 400-foot two-run home run to center field, his first since July 9 at Miami.
The Rockies got a run back in the second inning. On the 10th pitch of his at-bat, Corey Dickerson hit a long fly that Upton caught near the right fielder fence, scoring Charlie Blackmon.
Teheran helped himself with an RBI double in the second inning. Andrelton Simmons led off with a single and Teheran sliced a fly into right that Blackmon could not catch, giving the pitcher his second double and second RBI of the year.
The Braves stretched their lead to 5-1 in the fourth on Jason Heyward’s two-run homer, his 10th.
Colorado scored a run to make it 5-2 on Jonathan Herrera’s single off reliever Luis Avilan in the seventh. The Rockies had the tying run at the plate, but Wilin Rosario grounded into a fielder’s choice to end the threat.
NOTES: Colorado SS Troy Tulowitzki was ejected for contesting a called strikeout in the second inning. … To make room for Bettis on the roster, the Rockies optioned veteran LHP Jeff Francis to Triple-A Colorado Springs and designated RHP Josh Sullivan for assignment. … Colorado was short-handed in the outfield: Carlos Gonzalez (injured finger) did not play but said he did not want to be placed on the 15-day disabled list, and Michael Cuddyer returned home because of an undisclosed family situation. … The start on Thursday’s game was delayed nine minutes by rain. … Clint Fagan was called in to replace injured umpire Marty Foster, who was hit by a pitch on his left forearm Wednesday and had to leave the game. Fagan worked at third base.