04/22/12 4:00 PM ET
McCann credits McDowell with staff's success
By Jesse Sanchez / MLB.com
Uggla confident home runs will come
PHOENIX -- Braves second baseman Dan Uggla hit his second home run of the season Saturday and is optimistic it's the first of many to come this year.Uggla, who hit a career-high 36 home runs last season and averages 32 per year throughout his career, is hitting .241 with eight RBIs. Both of his home runs have come in his last four games. "It was a matter of time before I got the first one and hopefully, they will just start rolling in after that," Uggla said. "I've been battling, working every day to get my timing and be as comfortable as I can. It's been OK." Heading into Sunday's series finale with the D-backs, Uggla had hit safely in four consecutive games. The Braves, winners in 10 of their last 11 games, had scored 45 runs on 60 hits in their last five games. "Our [individual] numbers aren't astronomical, but it just means that everybody has been pitching in," Uggla said. "[Jason Heyward] has had a great last nine games, and Freddie [Freeman] has been on fire the last four or five. [Martin] Prado is really swinging it well. Michael Bourn has been unbelievable."
Heyward gets a breather
PHOENIX -- One day after his 10-game hitting streak came to an end, Jason Heyward was not in the starting lineup Sunday in the series finale against the D-backs. Heyward remains available to pitch-hit and could see action as a defensive replacement, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said."He has been playing his butt off, he really has," Gonzalez said. "I didn't put the lineup out until I talked to him. I said, 'We are going to give you a little breather and we really appreciate the way you have been playing.' I wanted to give his body a little bit of a rest." Heyward hit .385 with two home runs and six RBIs during the 10-game hitting streak. He already has five stolen bases this season after compiling only nine all of last season. "I've been going hard since Day 1 of Spring Training," Heyward said. "I'm working hard on playing the game and taking care of everything I can, so when it's time to play the games, I will compete and use all of my abilities."
It has not been determined if injured pitcher Tim Hudson will pitch Sunday or Monday against Pittsburgh when he returns from the disabled list, but Gonzalez said Hanson will open the four-game series Friday against the Pirates after Thursday's off-day.
Braves shortstop Tyler Pastornicky, who is hitting .158 with seven strikeouts in his last 10 games, was out of the starting lineup for the second consecutive game Sunday. Jack Wilson made his second consecutive start at the position.