Tellez sparks Brewers 2-1 win over Braves in Game 1 of NLDS

Mark Hoffman / USA TODAY NETWORK
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MILWAUKEE – Rowdy Tellez spoiled Charlie Morton’s gem with a two-run homer in the seventh inning and threw out a runner at home plate, leading the Milwaukee Brewers over the Atlanta Braves 2-1 Friday in the opener of their NL Division Series.

Corbin Burnes, Adrian Houser and Josh Hader combined on a four-hitter that gave Milwaukee the early lead in this best-of-five series. Game 2 is Saturday in Milwaukee.

Former Brewer Orlando Arcia grounded to second with runners on the corners to end the game. That came after Brewers catcher Omar Narváez — who combined with first baseman Tellez on a key first-inning double play — blocked Hader’s 1-2 pitch in the dirt to keep Freddie Freeman at third base.

Neither team produced much offense until the Brewers finally broke through in the seventh.

After Charlie Morton (0-1) hit Avisaíl García with a 1-2 pitch to start the inning, Tellez ripped another 1-2 offering from Morton over the center-field wall to break a scoreless tie. The hefty, bearded slugger had gone 1 of 13 against the Braves this season until delivering that 411-foot drive.

Tellez was activated from the injured list Saturday after missing about three weeks with a right patella strain.

Atlanta’s Joc Pederson lofted a pinch-hit homer off Houser (1-0) with two outs in the eighth.

Morton’s 85th and final pitch to Tellez was among the few mistakes he made all day. He struck out nine, walked one and hit a batter to continue his recent history of exceptional postseason performances.

Burnes was every bit as good in his first career postseason start.

The NL Cy Young Award contender opened the game with two straight walks and threw 40 pitches in the first two innings but settled down from there. The right-hander struck out six and gave up two hits and three walks in six shutout innings, throwing 91 pitches.

After the Braves put runners on the corners with nobody out but failed to score in the top of the first, nobody got a runner past first base until Tellez homered.

Neither team had a hit until Milwaukee’s Lorenzo Cain’s one-out single to right in the third. The Braves’ first hit off Burnes came when Eddie Rosario led off the fifth with a bloop single to center.

Atlanta’s best scoring chance came at the very start of the game.

Burnes walked the first two batters he faced — Jorge Soler and Freeman — with Soler advancing to third on a passed ball.

Ozzie Albies followed with a sharp grounder down the first-base line that Tellez caught just before stepping on the bag. When he noticed Soler was trying to score from third, Tellez threw to the plate.

Narváez caught the one-hop throw and tagged Soler to complete the double play.

The Braves didn’t get many more opportunities as Milwaukee used its loaded starting rotation to compensate for its lack of bullpen depth.

Milwaukee is playing this series without setup man Devin Williams and left-handed reliever Brent Suter. Williams fractured his throwing hand when he punched a wall the night the Brewers clinched the NL Central, and Suter has a strained right oblique.

Without those two in the bullpen, the Brewers had Houser work two innings to set things up for Hader. Houser spent the regular season in Milwaukee’s rotation.

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Left-hander Max Fried (14-7, 3.04) starts for the Braves and All-Star right-hander Brandon Woodruff (9-10, 2.56) pitches for the Brewers on Saturday. Fried has gone 7-0 with a 1.46 ERA over his last 11 starts.

MLB homer leader Pete Alonso to IL with bone bruise, sprain in wrist

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Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports
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PITTSBURGH — The New York Mets will have to dig out of an early-season hole without star first baseman Pete Alonso.

The leading home run hitter in the majors will miss three-to-four weeks with a bone bruise and a sprain in his left wrist.

The Mets placed Alonso on the 10-day injured list Friday, retroactive to June 8. Alonso was hit in the wrist by a 96 mph fastball from Charlie Morton in the first inning of a 7-5 loss to Atlanta on Wednesday.

Alonso traveled to New York for testing on Thursday. X-rays revealed no broken bones, but the Mets will be missing one of the premier power hitters in the game as they try to work their way back into contention in the NL East.

“We got better news than it could have been,” New York manager Buck Showalter said. “So we take that as a positive. It could have been worse.”

New York had lost six straight heading into a three-game series at Pittsburgh that began Friday. Mark Canha started at first for the Mets in the opener. Mark Vientos could also be an option, though Showalter said the coaching staff may have to use its “imagination” in thinking of ways to get by without Alonso.

“I’m not going to say someone has to step up and all that stuff,” Showalter said. “You’ve just got to be who you are.”

Even with Alonso in the lineup, the Mets have struggled to score consistently. New York is 16th in the majors in runs scored.

The team also said Friday that reliever Edwin Uceta had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. Uceta initially went on the IL in April with what the team called a sprained left ankle. He is expected to be out for at least an additional eight weeks.

New York recalled infielder Luis Guillorme and left-handed reliever Zach Muckenhirn from Triple-A Syracuse. The Mets sent catcher Tomás Nido to Triple-A and designated reliever Stephen Nogosek for assignment.

Nogosek is 0-1 with a 5.63 ERA in 13 games this season.