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Hudson strong again

Renteria goes yard twice

WASHINGTON — Edgar Renteria hit two home runs, Tim Hudson allowed three hits over seven innings, and the Atlanta Braves ended the Washington Nationals’ four-game winning streak with a 6-2 victory Tuesday night. Renteria went 3-for-5, homering in the first and seventh innings as the Braves snapped a two-game losing streak. Atlanta has won six of its last eight. After flirting with no-hit bids twice in their previous three games, the Nationals were on the other end of a fine pitching performance Tuesday. Hudson (5-1), inducing ground ball after ground ball, had a perfect game through 4 2-3 innings and lowered his ERA to 1.77. Hudson walked one and struck out four before leaving for a pinch hitter in the top of the eighth. He has pitched at least six innings in every start this season and has yet to allow more than three runs. The Braves punished Nationals starter Jerome Williams (0-5), who failed again to get his first win since 2005. Renteria’s home runs were his fifth and sixth of the season — he also had a two-homer game on opening day — and the Braves had more consecutive hits in the third inning (4) than they did in the entire game against Washington on Monday (3). Williams had to be activated from the disabled list before the game so he could make the start, a move that looked like a bad idea within minutes. His 1-2 pitch over fat part of the plate to Renteria was deposited for a two-run homer in the first, and he failed to retire any of the four batters he faced in the third. Williams was removed from the game, and the team announced he had been diagnosed with a strained rotator cuff. Williams had been put on the 15-day disabled list after spraining his left ankle while swinging during an at-bat in his last start on April 28. Andruw Jones, Brian McCann and Scott Thorman drove in runs for the Braves in their three-run third that made it 5-0. Hudson retired 11 of the first 14 batters on ground balls and didn’t allowed a base runner until walking Brian Schneider with two outs in the fifth. Robert Fick then broke up the no-hitter with a single to right, and Ryan Langerhans — who entered the game hitting .115 — got his second RBI of the season with a single that scored Schneider. The threat ended when pinch-hitter Dmitri Young swung at the first pitch and hit a comebacker to Hudson to retire the side. Renteria’s home run off reliever Ray King made it 6-1 in the seventh. Braves activate closer Wickman WASHINGTON — The Atlanta Braves activated closer Bob Wickman from the 15-day disabled list Tuesday and optioned reliever Kevin Barry to Triple-A Richmond. Wickman blew back-to-back save opportunities before being placed on the DL on April 30 with tendinitis in his upper back. He had allowed six runs and five hits in 1 2-3 innings in his last three appearances before he was sidelined. Wickman was available for Tuesday night’s game against the Washington Nationals. Right-hander Barry allowed five earned runs in two innings in his only appearance this season. Baseball expected to approve Braves sale Wednesday NEW YORK — The proposed sale of the Atlanta Braves from Time Warner Inc. to Liberty Media Corp. is likely to be approved Wednesday by baseball owners. Baseball officials said Tuesday they anticipated a vote on the first of two days of owners’ meetings. Officials from the companies hope to close the sale Wednesday for tax purposes. The sale was agreed to by the corporations in February, and baseball officials have said the transaction values the team at $461 million. During the meetings, owners also are to vote on the sport’s new out-of-market television contracts with DirecTV and iN Demand and to hear a presentation on the sport’s MLB Network, which is scheduled to launch in 2009.

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