Justin and B.J. Upton Homer in 9th Inning to Lead Braves Past Cubs

Brian Mazique@@UniqueMaziqueCorrespondent IIIApril 7, 2013

It's pretty clear the Chicago Cubs have bullpen issues. For the third straight outing, closer Carlos Marmol struggled in relief, and the Cubbies lost a heartbreaker, 6-5, to the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field.

Despite leading 5-1 heading into the last two innings, the Cubs bullpen imploded to give this one away. The collapse culminated in home runs off the bats of B.J. and Justin Upton in the bottom of the ninth.

Facing Marmol to lead off the inning, B.J. launched a solo shot to tie the game before Justin's long ball gave the Braves the walk-off victory two batters later. The game-winner was Justin's second home run of the night and capped a three-hit, three-RBI performance for the younger Upton brother. 

It was the first time this season the brothers have gone deep in the same game. Considering both of their power strokes, it's likely this will happen more than a few times as the season progresses.

For the Cubs, Marmol was not the only reliever at fault in this one. Japanese import Kyuji Fujikawa was just as bad in his one inning of work out of the bullpen, allowing three runs on four hits in the eighth inning.

Marmol and Fujikawa helped waste a strong outing from starter Carlos Villanueva, who lasted 6.2 innings and allowed only one run in his first start of the season.

Braves starter Julio Tehran was spared the loss despite allowing five runs and eight hits in five innings of work.

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