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Braves hand San Francisco first loss of season
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SAN FRANCISCO — Derek Lowe is concerned about all the attention being focused on Braves teammate Jason Heyward. Atlanta's rookie outfielder, though, isn't too worried.

Heyward homered and drove in two runs, Lowe won despite a wild outing and the Braves beat San Francisco 7-2 on Saturday night to hand the Giants their first loss of the season.

Heyward, who also homered in his first major league at-bat during Atlanta's opening day win over the Chicago Cubs on Monday, finished with three hits and two walks. That came on the heels of his 0-for-5 performance a day earlier which led to criticism of the 20-year-old phenom, a point that frustrated Lowe.

"Something's got to stop where people are continually talking about this guy," said Lowe, who scattered four hits over six innings. "I pick up the paper and it's like, 'The Giants figure out Heyward.' Now today, did the Giants not figure him out? It's unfair because people are basing him on a day-to-day, at-bat to at-bat. It's amazing."

Heyward had a solo shot off starter Todd Wellemeyer in the sixth inning and added an RBI single to cap a four-run seventh, helping the Braves end the Giants' four-game winning streak.

The rookie later shrugged off the pressures of being in the spotlight as part of the job.

"To me, I'm just playing baseball," Heyward said. "For me, it's going to take adjustments, it's going to take failures, it's going to
take successes. This is my first time seeing the league. Other than that I'm just playing baseball."

Lowe (2-0) won despite a career-high seven walks. Peter Moylan, Takashi Saito and Jesse Chavez completed the six-hitter for the Braves.

"Lowe was tough tonight," Braves manager Bobby Cox said. "He walked an unusually high amount ... but his ball was sinking good. He pitched out of some jams really good."

Martin Prado added two hits while filling in for injured Atlanta third baseman Chipper Jones.

The Giants were charged with four wild pitches, tying the most in San Francisco history.

"Overall I thought we were off tonight," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It wasn't a clean game for us. We'd been playing so well and we just had an off night."

Aaron Rowand had two hits and an RBI for the Giants, who entered as the only unbeaten team in the majors. San Francisco failed to take advantage of nine walks by Braves pitching and dropped to 4-1.

Atlanta won despite a shaky outing from Lowe, its opening day starter. The right-hander, who allowed only two walks over 22 innings in spring training, struggled with his command all night and repeatedly had to pitch out of trouble as a result.

He finished with four strikeouts and the seven walks, though only one came back to hurt him.

"I don't even know how to describe it," Lowe said. "That game could have easily at any point got completely out of control. I was doing my best not to let the walks affect me ... because the positive thing was when there was contact, there was mostly

After walking Aubrey Huff and Mark DeRosa leading off the fourth, Lowe gave up an RBI single to Jose Uribe but got out of the jam when Uribe was caught stealing and Eli Whiteside struck out.

In the sixth, Lowe issued three walks, one intentional, but got a double play and a groundout to end that threat.
Heyward tied the score at 1 with his second home run in the sixth, an opposite-field shot that just cleared the wall in left before bouncing back onto the field.

The Braves then scored three times in the seventh on a bases-loaded walk to Troy Glaus, Yunel Escobar's RBI groundout and
Heyward's run-scoring single to left. All the runs came against Wellemeyer (0-1), who worked out of a pair of jams early before running into control issues of his own.

Wellemeyer, who gave up seven hits over 6 1-3 innings with four strikeouts, didn't get much help from his teammates. The Giants averaged 5.7 runs through their first four games but hurt themselves on the bases, grounding into two double plays while getting caught stealing twice.

Atlanta added an unearned run in the eighth, then scored twice in the ninth on an RBI double by pinch-hitter Eric Hinske and a run-scoring single by Omar Infante.

NOTES: Jones missed his second straight game because of a strained right oblique muscle and is still day to day. ... Giants RHP Tim Lincecum received his second consecutive NL Cy Young Award trophy during a pregame ceremony. ... OF Fred Lewis is eligible to come off the Giants' 15-day disabled list Sunday. Lewis, who missed the final week of spring training because of a left intercostal strain, has been rehabbing with Triple-A Fresno. ... The Giants will celebrate the 10th anniversary of AT&T Park by reuniting players from the 2000 NL West division championship team, including Barry Bonds, Jeff Kent and Robb Nen.

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