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Cosart throws 2 hitless innings, Astros top Braves

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 2, 2014 at 7:46 pm •  Published: March 2, 2014
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KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) — Jarred Cosart pitched two shutout innings and Carlos Corporan had a pair of RBIs to lead the Houston Astros past an Atlanta Braves split squad 7-4 on Sunday.

It was the first spring training home game for the Astros, who finished last in the AL West last season. They went 51-111, their third straight year with 100 or more losses.

"I like what I've seen so far," manager Bo Porter said. "We are playing great defensively and I like the way we are running the bases."

Jordan Schafer had two more hits for the Braves to raise his spring average to .455. Schafer, who stole 22 bases in 94 games for Atlanta last season, is competing for one of the final outfield spots.

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Braves: David Hale pitched two innings and allowed two hits and an earned run while striking out three. Hale, who had a 0.82 ERA in two starts last year for the Braves, is fighting for a slot at the end of the Braves rotation. Julio Teheran, Kris Medlen, and Mike Minor should have spots already locked up while Brandon Beachy and Alex Wood have the inside shot at the final two. Hale said he still thinks he can crack the rotation. "All I can do is my best," Hale said. "If I throw my best, I think I have a shot."

Astros: Cosart led the American League in ERA after his debut on July 12 last season. He made a slight change in his delivery during the offseason and said he felt the positive effect in his spring debut.

"It felt a little strange at first, but everything is working out," Cosart said. "Stromie (pitching coach Brent Strom) worked with me and I'm starting lower with my delivery. It was great to get the first start out of the way."

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