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Atlanta Braves top Texas Rangers in Saturday game – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Charlie Morton combined with three relievers on a five-hitter, and the Atlanta Braves defeated Nathan Eovaldi and the Texas Rangers 5-2 on Saturday night for their sixth straight victory.

The NL East-leading Braves have won the first two games of the weekend series against the Rangers, who lead the AL West.

Travis d’Arnaud, who drove in six runs with three home runs, including a grand slam, in the Braves’ 8-3 victory on Friday night, hit a two-run home run off right-hander Austin Pruitt in the eighth.

Morton (2-0) gave up two runs and four hits with two walks in six innings. Joe Jiménez, AJ Minter and Raisel Iglesias each pitched a scoreless inning. Iglesias earned his sixth save in as many chances with a perfect ninth inning.

Luis Guillorme hit a run-scoring double, and Matt Olson’s sacrifice fly broke a 2-2 tie in Atlanta’s three-run second inning.

Eovaldi (1-2) gave up three runs, five hits and six walks in 5 1/3 innings.

Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said before the game that he had a surprise planned out of the bullpen. The surprise was that right-hander Jon Gray, who started four games this season, relieved Eovaldi in the sixth inning.

Gray, who had appeared as a reliever in just one of 209 regular-season appearances with Colorado and Texas, recorded two strikeouts, stranding two runners in the sixth, before adding two more strikeouts in a perfect seventh.

Ronald Acuña Jr. opened the first with an infield single. After a bunt-single by Michael Harris II, a double steal gave Acuña 189 career steals, tying him with Rafael Furcal for the Atlanta record.

The Braves moved to Atlanta in 1966. Including the team’s years in Boston and Milwaukee, Acuña ranks 11th in franchise history. Herman Long had a franchise record 434 steals for the Boston Braves from 1890-1902.

Harris had three hits.

Rangers first baseman Nathaniel Lowe was held without a hit in his return from the injured list after missing the first 20 games of the season due to a right oblique strain.

Travis Jankowski made a leaping catch on Austin Riley’s drive at the top of the center field wall in the eighth.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rangers: RHP Max Scherzer (back surgery) had no trouble on the day after pitching a simulated two-inning game on Friday. Bochy said Scherzer will have one more bullpen session before possibly beginning minor league rehab Wednesday. … C Sam Huff was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock. 1B Jared Walsh was designated for assignment and C Jonah Heim was placed on the bereavement list.

NEXT ONE

Braves rookie RHP Darius Vines (0-0, 1.93) will make his second start of the season and fourth of his career in the final game of the series on Sunday night. Rangers RHP Michael Lorenzen (1-0, 0.00) is 1-1 with a 7.52 ERA in 12 games, including two starts, against Atlanta.