ATLANTA -- Freddie Freeman soured Michael Pineda's final tuneup with a three-run homer and the Braves manufactured a five-run sixth that proved decisive in Atlanta's 8-5 win over the Yankees on Friday night at SunTrust Park.In addition to being a mutual exhibition season finale, this was the first game played
ATLANTA -- Freddie Freeman soured Michael Pineda's final tuneup with a three-run homer and the Braves manufactured a five-run sixth that proved decisive in Atlanta's 8-5 win over the Yankees on Friday night at SunTrust Park.
In addition to being a mutual exhibition season finale, this was the first game played in Atlanta's new stadium. New York's Greg Bird drew the honor of clearing the outfield first, hitting a two-run homer off Braves starter Bartolo Colon in the third inning. But Freeman in the bottom of that inning gave the home crowd a good memory when he erased an early deficit with the three-run shot that snuck over the wall in right-center.
Making the final preparations for what will be his 20th Major League season, Colon scattered four hits and two earned runs over three innings. The 43-year-old right-hander surrendered consecutive singles to Gary Sanchez and Bird in the first inning, then retired eight straight before Sanchez doubled ahead of Bird's homer.
He will make his regular-season debut on Wednesday, when he toes the Citi Field rubber to face his former Mets teammates.
"Apart from that home run I gave up, which I left over the middle, I really felt I was hitting my spots," Colon said through an interpreter. "The most important thing is I feel healthy, and I'm ready for the season."
Pineda allowed three runs and six hits over five innings before the Braves constructed their decisive sixth against Dellin Betances and Jonathan Holder, who combined to allow five unearned runs.
"Besides the home run he gave up, he was pretty good tonight," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said of Pineda. "I thought he got his work in, he's ready to go, and that's the most important part."
Betances allowed two-out singles to the only batters he faced -- Brandon Phillips and Adonis Garcia -- and Holder issued a pair of walks before surrendering Jace Peterson's three-run double, a hit that eluded Dustin Fowler in shallow center field.
Braves knuckleballer R.A. Dickey followed Colon with two scoreless innings before the Braves gave many of their relievers a chance to get used to the new mound. Chris Carter brought the Yankees within three runs with a solo homer off Ian Krol in the seventh inning.
Yankees Up Next: The Yankees will start their regular season on Sunday vs. Tampa Bay, kicking off a six-game, eight-day road trip. Masahiro Tanaka will get the ball in his third Opening Day start. First pitch is set for 1:10 p.m. ET.
Braves Up Next:Julio Teheran will make his fourth consecutive Opening Day start when Atlanta opens the regular season with Monday afternoon's game against the Mets at Citi Field. New York ace Noah Syndergaard will throw the first pitch at 1:10 ET.
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Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.
Aimee Sachs is a contributor to MLB.com.