NEW YORK -- Jonny Venters hopes he hit rock bottom when he allowed Alex Rodriguez's game-tying grand slam in a June 12 loss to the Yankees. The Braves left-handed reliever has since recorded four consecutive scoreless appearances.
But he still does not feel as comfortable as he did last year, when he earned his first All-Star selection.
"When you get out of whack, it takes time to get back to where you need to be," Venters said. "It's not something that happens overnight."
One night after allowing Rodriguez's slam, Venters entered a one-run game to face Robinson Cano with two on and two outs in the eighth inning. He received a much-needed boost when he struck out Cano and saw his confidence further strengthened on Tuesday night, when he did not allow a run after the Yankees put two on with nobody out in the seventh inning.
"I don't remember the last time I got in trouble like that and didn't give it up," Venters said. "I used to be pretty good at it."
When asked whether he has felt different on a day-to-day basis this year, Venters laughed and said, "sometimes it's more like on a pitch-to-pitch basis.
Heyward's power impresses Yankees
NEW YORK -- While producing one of his best all-around performances of the season in Tuesday's 4-3 win over the Yankees, Jason Heyward drew more respect from Mark Teixeira.
"That might have been the hardest ball I've had hit at me," Teixeira said of Heyward's line drive that struck his left heel and then flew toward the second-base bag with two outs in the sixth inning.
The resulting single gave the Braves a lead they would not squander -- and left Teixeira on the bench Wednesday to rest the resulting sore left heel. It also gave Heyward's fifth multihit game of the month, matching the total he combined to record in April and May. He added to that total with two home runs in Wednesday's win over the Yankees.
"It's just good to have a routine and a rhythm so I can go up there and just trust myself and trust my approach at the plate," Heyward said. "All I can do is go up there and try to put up a good at-bat."
Heyward has batted .360 with a .396 on-base percentage and .740 slugging percentage in his past 14 games.
"He's hanging in there against lefties and hitting the ball the other way in the gaps," Braves third baseman Chipper Jones said. "We all know what kind of talent he has. He's a five-tool talent if healthy."
Commemorating Chipper Jones' last regular season visit to Yankee Stadium, Derek Jeter and former Brave Andruw Jones presented the former National League MVP with the third-base bag used during Tuesday night's game.
The June 1 game postponed by rain will be made up as part of a split doubleheader against the Nationals at Nationals Park on July 21. Game times are 1:05 p.m. ET and 7:05 p.m. ET
Instead of using Jones as his designated hitter on Wednesday, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez opted to give his 40-year-old third baseman a chance to get two days of rest leading up to Friday's series opener in Boston.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.