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Braves silence Houston's hitters as Wood throws 7 sharp innings in 4-0 win over Astros

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HOUSTON - In the opener against Atlanta, the Houston Astros had trouble getting timely hits.

When the series continued on Wednesday night they had trouble getting any hits at all.

Justin Upton homered for the second straight game and had three RBIs and Alex Wood pitched seven scoreless innings to help the Braves to a 4-0 win over the Astros.

Shae Simmons and Juan Jaime finished the three-hitter as the Astros were shut out for the 10th time this season.

"We struggled just to even mount some offence," manager Bo Porter said. "(Wood) did a great job, he was efficient with his pitch count, he attacked the strike zone and we had some hittable pitches and did not put quality swings on them."

The Braves had just two hits when Upton launched his 16th homer, a two-run shot into the bullpen in right-centre, to make it 3-0 in the seventh inning. Collin McHugh (4-6) had plunked Jason Heyward to set up things for Upton.

Upton drove in Atlanta's first run on a sacrifice fly in the second inning.

Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman left in the eighth after being hit by a pitch on what appeared to be his right elbow. He said he hoped to be OK to play in the wrapup Thursday.

Wood (6-6) was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to make his first start since May 4 after appearing in 11 games out of the bullpen in his last stint with the Braves. He allowed three hits and struck out four with one walk.

Simmons and Jaime struck out two apiece in a hitless inning apiece.

Houston was 0 for 5 with runners in scoring position.

"He mixed pitches," rookie Jon Singleton said of Wood. "For the most part, when we got runners on base, he made good pitches and made it hard on us."

McHugh struck out nine in his third straight loss.

"He made a mistake to a really good hitter, and he didn't miss it," Porter said of Upton's homer. "But outside of that one pitch, I feel like he was in complete control of the game the entire time."

B.J. Upton doubled and took third on a balk before scoring on a groundout by Tommy La Stella to push Atlanta's lead to 4-0 in the eighth.

Evan Gattis doubled to start the second and scored on the one-out sacrifice fly by Justin Upton.

McHugh walked a pair in the fourth inning, but the Braves didn't get another hit until Freeman singled with two outs in the sixth. Freeman was tagged out trying to stretch it into a double to end the inning.

Dexter Fowler hit a leadoff double in the first, and was thrown out at third trying to advance on Jose Altuve's grounder. Houston didn't get another runner until Singleton snapped an 0-for-17 skid with a ground-rule double to right-centre field with two outs in the fourth.

The ball got lodged under the wall and Singleton was already heading toward home when he was called back to second base.

Wood got right back on track after Singleton's hit and set down the next five Astros before walking Fowler with one out in the sixth. George Springer singled with two outs to put runners at the corners, but Wood struck out Singleton to escape the jam.

NOTES: The Astros recalled OF L.J. Hoes from Triple-A Oklahoma City and optioned OF Robbie Grossman there before the game. ... SS Carlos Correa, Houston's top prospect and the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 draft, had season-ending surgery on Wednesday after breaking his right fibula. Correa was injured while sliding into third base Saturday night in a game for Single-A Lancaster. Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said Correa is expected to return for the 2015 season. Correa was chosen for the All-Star Futures game this week after hitting .325 with six homers and 57 RBIs in 62 games for Lancaster this season.

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