Upton’s 10th homer lifts Braves

Associated Press photo by Barry Gutierrez -- Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Jeff Francis throws during the first game of a doubleheader against the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday in Denver, with a snow-coverred tree in the background. Game-time temperature for the first game was 23 degrees, the coldest in Coors Field history. Show caption
Associated Press photo by Barry Gutierrez -- Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Jeff Francis throws during the first game of a doubleheader against the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday in Denver, with a snow-coverred tree in the background. Game-time temperature for the first game was 23 degrees, the coldest in Coors Field history.

DENVER — On the coldest day at Coors Field, the Atlanta Braves won a game between the hottest teams in the major leagues.

Starting a day-night doubleheader that opened with a 23-degree temperature, Justin Upton hit his major league-leading 10th home run, Dan Uggla and rookie Evan Gattis also connected and the Braves beat the Colorado Rockies 4-3 Tuesday.

Reed Johnson, playing right field for Atlanta because Jason Heyward underwent an appendectomy Monday night, went 4-for-4 with three doubles. Heyward was put on the 15-day disabled list.

Colorado and Atlanta each began the day at 13-5, tied for the best record in the major leagues.

This was the coldest game-time temperature in the majors since it began collecting data in 1991, according to STATS. The Rockies said the previous low at Coors Field was 28.

Pitching in short sleeves while many of the other players were bundled up, Mike Minor (3-1) allowed three runs and five hits in six innings.

Gattis hit a tiebreaking home run in the fourth and ended the game by throwing out Wilin Rosario trying to steal second.

Jeff Francis (1-2) gave up four runs and six hits in four innings, leaving him with an 8.44 ERA.

Ground crews began working around 6 a.m. to clear several inches of snow from the playing surface at Coors Field, which opened in 1995. While there was no sign of snow on the field when the game started, some parts of the ballpark remained closed, including the snow-filled Rockpile section in center. Workers hosed off the snow on the stand of evergreen trees beyond the center field wall. It was important that the trees be cleared of the snow because they’re part of the green “batters’ eye” background.

Upton hit a solo drive in the first, and Upton’s two-run homer in the second made it 3-0. Colorado closed in the second on Rosario’s run-scoring groundout and Jordan Pacheco’s RBI single, then tied the score in the third when Dexter Fowler tripled to the right-field wall and Josh Rutledge singled.

Gattis homered leading off the fourth.

Cardinals 2, Nationals 0: In Washington, Adam Wainwright extended his sterling start to the season — and Washington’s mediocre one — by coming within two outs of his second shutout.

The right-hander (4-1) lowered his ERA to 1.93 by going 8.1 scoreless innings, allowing only five hits.

Allen Craig and Carlos Beltran drove in runs in the fourth off Nationals lefty Ross Detwiler (1-1), who gave up eight hits across six innings.

Pirates 2, Phillies 0: In Philadelphia, Jeff Locke pitched six smooth innings of two-hit ball, and Gaby Sanchez homered off Cole Hamels to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Locke (2-1) struck out six and walked two. After wriggling out of a jam in the fourth, he retired his last eight batters — striking out three of the final four.

Sanchez also doubled, and Brandon Inge had an RBI double.

Dodgers 7, Mets 2: In New York, Mark Ellis lined two home runs and hit a hard grounder that sent Mets starter Jonathon Niese limping off for X-rays.

Ellis got four hits and drove in four runs. He hit his 100th career homer in the fifth inning, then connected for a tiebreaking, three-run shot with two outs in the seventh.

Cubs 4, Reds 2, 10 innings: In Cincinnati, Carlos Marmol blew a lead in the ninth inning before Darwin Barney hit his first homer in the 10th inning for the Cubs.

Barney connected off left-hander Manny Parra (0-1), and Dave Sappelt added an RBI single.