(Reuters) - Atlanta starter Tim Hudson maintained his red-hot form, while opposing pitcher Tim Lincecum showed no signs of breaking out of his slump, as the Braves beat the San Francisco Giants 7-1 on Sunday.
Hudson (13-4) breezed through seven innings and allowed one run to win his seventh consecutive decision. The right-hander has not lost since July 1.
The Braves' (73-55) win kept them at the top of the National League Wild Card race.
"It was important to at least come out of here with a split," Hudson told reporters after Atlanta won the final two games of the four-game series.
"Anytime you lose the first two games of a four-game series, it's really tough to come out with a split. But we were fortunate to come out and get some runs early."
The Braves scored two runs in the first inning and led 5-0 by the sixth inning.
Jason Heyward hit a home run for the third successive game, while Freddie Freeman and Juan Francisco also homered to support visiting Atlanta.
Lincecum gave up three runs in five innings and fell to 7-14 on the season, a far cry from the form that earned him two Cy Young Awards.
"I was just getting behind 2-0 on everybody and I wasn't really attacking the zone in that first inning," Lincecum said. "You just go back to the chalk board of 'What did I need to do better in that inning to make it better?' "
San Francisco (71-57) leads the NL West by two games but the Los Angeles Dodgers, who have acquired Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and Carl Crawford, are making a push for the playoffs in the final weeks of the regular season.