Herrera (3 hits) backs Eflin's gem in Phils' win

Herrera (3 hits) backs Eflin's gem in Phils' win

ATLANTA -- Odubel Herrera's 12th homer sparked a three-run fifth inning and provided more than enough insurance to help the Phillies cruise to a 5-2 victory over the Braves on Tuesday at SunTrust Park.

Herrera extended his hitting streak to 11 games as the Phillies won their fifth consecutive game against the Braves. Herrera went 3-for-4 and paced an offensive attack that scored five times in two innings against Braves starter Julio Teheran.

Herrera reached down to hit a 0-2 curveball for the homer in the fifth. It looked a bit like a golf swing.

"I just got my two-strike approach, I just saw it, stayed short and hit it ... I don't how to play golf, but I liked it," Herrera said, smiling.

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Herrera has now hit safely in 15 consecutive games against the Braves and is batting .429 against them this season. His fifth-inning blast was his ninth home run against the Braves in his career.

Nick Williams drove in the Phillies' first run with a ringing RBI double, and starting pitcher Zach Eflin helped himself with an RBI single to shallow center to give the Phillies a 2-1 lead. From there, Herrera took over, belting a two-run homer into the right-field bleachers.

Williams' RBI double to center

The Braves responded with a Matt Adams' RBI single in the seventh, their first run since Freddie Freeman hit his 21st homer in the first inning. However, it wasn't enough, as Atlanta couldn't recover from the five runs given up by Teheran.

"We had a lot of chances to come back but [Eflin] was real efficient with everything he was throwing," Braves manager Brian Snitker said. "We had a hard time getting a hold of him and late in the game when we came back, we couldn't get a big hit."

Adams' RBI single

Teheran dropped to 7-10 on the season and surrendered his career-high 28th home run allowed in the loss. He has now allowed at least five earned runs in seven of 23 starts. In contrast, Teheran entered this year having done so in 20 of 126 starts from 2013-16.

"I felt that I was focused in the game and I went into deep counts a couple of times," Teheran said. "But I really wasn't losing the control or anything. I was making pitches, but they are really good."

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Eflin fared much better as he won his first decision on the season. He allowed two runs in seven innings of work as the Phillies improved to 10-2 against the Braves this season.

Eflin's first win of the year

"I was excited about the way I finished," Eflin said. "Obviously you want to go the whole game like you do every game but to be able to hunker down and get the guys out that I needed to get out was really big for me."

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MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Zach attack: Eflin supported his own cause with a fourth-inning RBI single, driving home Williams and giving the Phillies a 2-1 lead. It was Eflin's second RBI on the season.

Eflin's RBI single

Nifty double play: Up 1-0 in the second inning, the Braves had runners in scoring position with one out, looking to add to their lead with Ozzie Albies at the plate. With the count at 2-2, Albies hit a ground ball up the middle. Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis ranged to his left, snared the ball and flipped it to second baseman Cesar Hernandez, who completed the double play to get Eflin out of the inning. The play loomed large as the Braves didn't get another runner into scoring position until the seventh inning, when the game was already out of reach.

Phillies' slick double play

QUOTABLE
I don't know how the guy hit that ball. It almost bounced and he hit it out. That is the way it has been going. If he had taken it, the catcher probably wouldn't have caught it more than likely. -- Snitker, on Herrera's home run

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Herrera became the first Phillies player to have a hit and a run scored in 10 straight games against a single opponent since Jimmy Rollins accomplished the feat with 12 straight games against the Marlins in 2005.

ANOTHER GEM
Braves center fielder Ender Inciarte added to his highlight portfolio when he raced into shallow center to make a sliding catch of Tommy Joseph's sinking liner, which had a 21 percent catch probability, according to Statcast™. This was Inciarte's MLB-leading sixth 5-star catch of the season.

Statcast: Inciarte's diving grab

WHAT'S NEXT
Phillies: Phillies right-hander Jerad Eickhoff (2-7, 4.56 ERA) starts Wednesday night against the Braves at SunTrust Park. Eickhoff has not recorded an out past the sixth inning since his second start of the season. Overall, just 1.6 percent of his outs have come in the seventh or later, the lowest rate among more than 100 pitchers with at least 250 outs in 2017.

Braves: Sean Newcomb will take the mound when this two-game series resumes Wednesday at 7:35 p.m. ET. Newcomb's recent control problems were extended Thursday, when he issued seven walks (one intentional) while allowing three runs over 4 2/3 innings against the Dodgers.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Jaylon Thompson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Atlanta who covered the Braves on Tuesday.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.