Braves send Garcia to the hill in Miami

Freddy Garcia makes his first start with the Atlanta Braves on Thursday afternoon when they visit Marlins Park for the finale of a four- game series with the Miami Marlins.

A veteran of 373 big-league outings since 1999, Garcia began 2013 by making 11 appearances with the Baltimore Orioles and posting a 3-5 record with a 5.77 earned run average.

His contract was purchased by the Braves on Aug. 23 and he's subsequently made three appearances in relief in Atlanta uniform while allowing just one run on five hits 7 2/3 innings.

Garcia is 0-1 in four career meetings with the Marlins.

For Miami, 23-year-old righty Nathan Eovaldi aims for a second win in three starts after struggling mightily in his last 10 starts.

The former Los Angeles Dodgers draft pick is just 1-6 in his last 10 starts, with the lone victory coming Sept. 1 in Atlanta, where he pitched eight scoreless innings in a 7-0 win.

That triumph ended an eight-start stretch in which Eovaldi was 0-5 and the Marlins won just two of the games in which he pitched.

His most recent start ended in a 9-2 loss to Washington after he was nicked for five runs on nine hits in three innings.

On Wednesday, Jose Fernandez allowed one run on five hits over seven innings and also cleared the benches after stroking his first-career homer in the Marlins' 5-2 win.

Fernandez (12-6) struck out five and walked three to pick up his seventh win over his last eighth decisions. Giancarlo Stanton went 2-for-3 with two-run homer and three RBI and Logan Morrison drove in a run for the Marlins.

Mike Minor (13-7) was tagged for five runs -- four earned -- on 11 hits over six innings to absorb the loss.

Evan Gattis smacked a solo homer and Elliot Johnson drove in a run for the Braves, who saw their magic number for clinching the NL East remain at seven games.

Atlanta won 10 of the first 15 games with the Marlins this season, including two of three in a series from Aug. 30 to Sept. 1.