ATLANTA (AP) — The Milwaukee Brewers are mired in their worst slump of the season.
Going against Julio Teheran didn't help matters.
The Atlanta right-hander blanked the Brewers on six hits, leading the Braves to a 5-0 victory Tuesday night.
It was the season-high fourth straight loss for Milwaukee, which has been shut out twice and scored only five runs during the skid.
"We're not grinding out the at-bats that we need to," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "We either need to have somebody go out and throw a shutout like they did, or we need to swing the bats better."
Making matters worse, Milwaukee starter Yovani Gallardo had to leave the game in the fourth after spraining his left ankle trying to field a high chopper over the mound.
X-rays were negative, but he is questionable for his next start.
"It's stiffening up now a little bit, but it should be all right," Gallardo said. "It's not the first time it's happened. For some reason, it's always my left ankle."
Gallardo (2-3) hasn't had a win since April 6 at Boston, his second start of the season. Since then, he is 0-3 with five no-decisions, despite allowing no more than four earned runs in any of those appearances.
For the second night in a row, this matchup between first-place teams was a laugher. The Braves jumped ahead with three runs in the third and cruised to victory after opening the four-game series with a 9-3 rout.
"When you're in first place, it's always good news no matter what," Gallardo said. "But we all know that things haven't gone our way to where we wanted to the last week, week and a half. We've got to figure out a way to turn it around and get back on a winning streak.
Justin Upton homered and had three RBIs for Atlanta, but Teheran (3-3) was the star of the night. He turned in his second shutout of the season, just six days after lasting only 3 1-3 innings in a 10-4 loss at San Francisco, the shortest outing of his career.
"He's proving himself to be the ace of the team," said Andrelton Simmons, who also homered for the Braves. "He had a bad outing. That's the best way to bounce back — a shutout."
Teheran pitched his first career shutout last month, beating Philadelphia 1-0 with a three-hitter. This time, he was on the verge of getting pulled when he gave up a pair of singles in the ninth inning, putting runners at first and third and one out. But he struck out pinch-hitter Rickie Weeks and Carlos Gomez, the latter with a 92 mph fastball on Teheran's 128th pitch.
Simmons had a heads-up play in the fourth, taking advantage of some lackluster defense.
After B.J. Upton walked, Simmons hit a grounder off the second base bag, the ball rolling into short left field. Second baseman Scooter Gennett chased it down, then lazily threw it in toward third base. Simmons took off for second and appeared to get a hand in ahead of the tag with a tumbling slide.
The umpire initially called Simmons out, but the call was overturned after Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez challenged.
Teheran followed with a bouncer over the mound, the ball skipping away when Gennett and shortstop Jean Segura got tangled up trying to make the play. Upton came in to score, Gennett was charged with an error, and Gallardo came up limping after leaping for the ball and coming down awkwardly on his left foot.
Notes: A child sitting behind the Braves dugout was struck when Gomez fouled off a line drive in the seventh inning. Teheran crouched down in anguish when he saw what happened, and Gomez also looked toward the stands with concern. The Braves said the boy was "conscious and talkative" before he was taken to a hospital. No other details were immediately released. ... The Braves scratched C Evan Gattis, who had been scheduled to hit cleanup, just before the first pitch because of "viral symptoms." ... Brewers RHP Jim Henderson (shoulder) is scheduled to make a rehab appearance Friday for Double-A Huntsville (AL). The tentative plan is for Henderson to make three outing in the minors so he can go multiple innings as a long reliever for Milwaukee. ... Atlanta's Ervin Santana (4-1) will go against Milwaukee's Kyle Lohse (5-1) on Wednesday.