Buck gets best of Buck in Braves' first spring win

Buck gets best of Buck in Braves' first spring win

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Zoilo Almonte scored a go-ahead run on a Dixon Machado throwing error, and Eury Perez stole home in a two-run ninth inning, which led the Braves to a 6-4 win over the Tigers on Thursday afternoon at Joker Marchant Stadium.

The late rally broke a tie that the Tigers had forced on RBI singles from Xavier Avery in the seventh inning and Austin Green in the eighth. The two ninth-inning runs came off Alex Wilson, who was part of the trade that brought Yoenis Cespedes to Detroit for Rick Porcello.

John Buck, making a rare start at first base, doubled in two runs in the sixth inning off former Georgia Tech pitcher Buck Farmer. Joey Terdoslavich doubled, walked twice and scored two runs.

Cespedes was scratched from the starting lineup with lower back tightness, but Alfredo Simon -- acquired to fill Porcello's spot in the Tigers' rotation -- delivered two hitless innings in his Tigers debut, retiring six of the seven batters he faced. His lone baserunner was a hit-by-pitch on a 77-mph breaking ball.

"I just tried to loosen my arm and throw the ball well," said Simon, who threw 27 pitches after throwing more than twice as many in his live batting-practice sessions last week. "The last two BPs, I threw like 60 pitches. I didn't throw a lot of pitches today. I just feel real comfortable with my cutter and my two-seamer, and that's what I just throw a lot."

J.D. Martinez went 3-for-3, including a two-out single to score Steven Moya in the opening inning. That was the lone run off Braves starter Julio Teheran, who made his first start in Lakeland since giving up six home runs in an outing here three years ago.

Up next: The Braves will host the Nationals on Friday at 1:05 p.m. ET. Alex Wood is scheduled to complete two innings in his Grapefruit League season debut. Freddie Freeman and some of Atlanta's other regulars will have a chance to get reacquainted with Washington right-hander Jordan Zimmermann, who will also be making his first start of the year.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.