published Thursday, April 14th, 2011

Chipper homers, but Braves fall

  • photo
    Atlanta Braves' Chipper Jones (10) swings for a solo home run in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Florida Marlins on Wednesday, April 13, 2011, in Atlanta. The RBI was the 1,500th of his career. Only two other switch-hitters have reached the 1,500 milestone. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

ATLANTA — Josh Johnson took a no-hit bid into the eighth inning before rookie Freddie Freeman doubled with one out, and the Florida Marlins beat the Atlanta Braves 5-1 Wednesday night.

Johnson (2-0), who held the New York Mets hitless for six innings on opening day, dominated the Braves for 71⁄3 innings, striking out nine and walking three.

Freeman doubled down the line past third baseman Greg Dobbs. Marlins manager Edwin Rodriguez immediately went out to pull his ace after 109 pitches.

Chipper Jones homered in the ninth off Randy Choate for the Braves’ only other hit. The home run gave Jones 1,500 RBIs for his career.

Chris Coghlan had three hits, including a two-run single in a three-run second. Johnson contributed an RBI single and Logan Morrison hit his third homer.

Tim Hudson (2-1) gave up seven hits and five runs in six innings.

Attendance was 14,351, one day after the series opener drew only 13,856, the smallest in Turner Field history.

Johnson came close to a no-hitter in the Marlins’ opener, blanking the Mets until Willie Harris led off the seventh inning with a double.

The two-time All-Star who led the NL in ERA last year came even closer this time. With his pitch count rising, Johnson needed only eight pitches to retire the Braves in order in the seventh.

Martin Prado grounded back to Johnson to open the eighth before Freeman’s double.

Johnson was trying for Florida’s first no-hitter since Anibal Sanchez threw one against Arizona on Sept. 6, 2006. Al Leiter, Kevin Brown and A.J. Burnett also have pitched no-hitters for Florida.

The Braves avoided being no-hit only a few days away from the one-year anniversary of Ubaldo Jimenez throwing a no-hitter at Turner Field on April 17, 2010, in a 4-0 Colorado win.

Coghlan led off the night with his team-leading sixth double but the Marlins didn’t have another two-base hit, ending their streak of at least two doubles in 10 straight games.

Hanley Ramirez drove in Coghlan with a single up the middle. Coghlan added a two-run single in the second after Johnson drove in a run with a single, a hit that came after John Buck was intentionally walked to load the bases.

Morrison’s homer in the third pushed the lead to 5-0.

The Braves’ only baserunners through seven innings were walks by Jones in the first, Brian McCann in the fourth and Nate McLouth in the sixth.

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