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Haren, Span lead Nationals over Braves

Washington, which had a nine-game losing streak before traveling to Atlanta, has won two straight.

DAN HAREN pitched eight sharp innings, Denard Span hit a two-run double and the visiting Washington Nationals beat the Atlanta Braves, 3-1, last night.

The Nationals, who snapped a nine-game losing streak to Atlanta on Wednesday, allowed their NL East rivals to get only three runners in scoring position over 2 nights.

Haren (3-3) won his second consecutive start, giving up four hits and one run with one walk and four strikeouts.

Rafael Soriano earned his ninth save in 10 chances by pitching the ninth. He retired Justin Upton and Freddie Freeman on groundouts before Evan Gattis singled and Dan Uggla popped up.

Washington got off to a good start in the first off Kris Medlen, breaking its 15-game streak without a first-inning run when Span led off with a double, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Steve Lombardozzi's RBI single.

Adam LaRoche doubled and rookie Anthony Rendon singled to start the second. With two outs, Span doubled past third baseman Chris Johnson on a play that was originally scored an error and later changed to a hit.

Medlen (1-4) lost his third straight start, allowing seven hits, three runs and three walks in seven innings. He struck out eight.

In another NL game * 

At Chicago, Yadier Alonso's two-out fly to rightfield dropped in front of Julio Borbon for an RBI single that led to a four-run eighth inning and boosted the San Diego Padres over the Cubs, 4-2, for a four-game series split.

In AL games * 

At Toronto, Ryan Dempster (2-2) won his second straight start and the Boston Red Sox took advantage of a season-high 10 walks to beat the Blue Jays, 3-1.

Stephen Drew knocked in the go-ahead run as the Red Sox notched their seventh win in eight games.

Before the game, Red Sox manager John Farrell said he was upset by accusations that pitcher Clay Buchholz was putting a foreign substance on the ball during Wednesday's win over the Blue Jays.

Former major league pitchers Jack Morris and Dirk Hayhurst, now broadcasters for the Blue Jays, told Sportsnet 590 The Fan in Toronto that Buchholz was loading up the ball with a substance from his left forearm.

"He's got rosin on his arm," Farrell said. "He's not loading up. As soon as someone pitches well or does well, they're cheating."

Buchholz (6-0) brushed aside the allegations, saying he puts rosin on his arm and occasionally wets his fingers to get a better grip.

* At Arlington, Texas, Tyler Flowers hit a three-run homer in the sixth to lead the Chicago White Sox to a 3-1 win over the Rangers on a frigid night that forced many fans to wear ski caps and jackets.

Game-time temperature at Rangers Ballpark was 44 degrees, 37 degrees cooler than the previous night.

* At Kansas City, the Royals' game against Tampa Bay was postponed after heavy rain turned to sleet and snow during the middle of the fourth inning.

Kansas City led 1-0 when the game was called as the loudspeakers blared "Let It Snow." No makeup date was set and the game will be replayed in its entirety. The Rays don't return to Kansas City again this season.

Noteworthy * 

Colorado agreed to a minor league deal with three-time All-Star pitcher Roy Oswalt, the team announced on its Twitter account.

The 35-year-old Oswalt has a career record of 163-96 in 12 seasons, including 2 years with the Phillies. He hasn't pitched in the majors since Oct. 2, when he was with Texas.

* Major League Baseball fined umpire Tom Hallion and Tampa Bay pitchers David Price, Jeremy Hellickson and Matt Moore for their dustup last weekend. The pitchers were fined $1,000 each. It was unknown how much Hallion was docked.

Hallion was the plate umpire during a Rays-White Sox game Sunday at Chicago, and Price thought he missed a pitch. They exchanged words and Price, Hellickson and Moore later made comments about Hallion on Twitter.

* Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez has no restrictions on running and is ready to begin baseball activities next week as he tries to come back from offseason hip surgery.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said he expects Rodriguez to report to Tampa, Fla., on Monday. Cashman also said the earliest Rodriguez could play for the Yankees would be after the All-Star break.

* Major League Baseball and the players association are donating a combined $100,000 to victims of the Texas fertilizer plant explosion that killed at least 14 people and injured about 200.