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Braves blast Edwin Jackson, Cubs

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Updated: July 12, 2014 10:56PM

With each day like Saturday, Arismendy Alcantara gets people more excited about his future with the Cubs.

Edwin Jackson also has a future with the Cubs, but what happened to him Saturday will make some less than thrilled about that.

Alcantara, flawless during his first start in center field, also had two hits and scored twice. But that wasn’t enough to undo Jackson’s worst start of the year in the Cubs’ 11-6 loss to the Atlanta Braves. Jackson went 3 2/3 innings and allowed nine earned runs and three homers, with Chris Johnson hitting two and Braves starter Mike Minor getting the other.

It was the fourth straight winless start for Jackson (5-10) and another tough day for a pitcher who’s only a season-and-a-half into his four-year, $52 million contract. He was charged with all six Braves runs in the fourth and saw his ERA rise from 5.05 to 5.64.

‘‘To me, today was just not his day,’’ manager Rick Renteria said.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, that has been the common refrain for Jackson in his time in Chicago. He is 13-28 as a Cub and is on pace to do worse than last year’s 4.98 ERA.

Asked if the Cubs would consider another role for Jackson, Renteria said, ‘‘I would say the answer’s no.’’

Jackson knows he must get better.

‘‘At the end of the day you’ve got two options,’’ Jackson said. ‘‘You can accept it and you can fold, or you can take it as a slap in the face [and] you can turn it around and do something about it.’’

Meanwhile, Alcantara, 22, continued to impress. His two runs gave him five in four games, and he handled a sometimes-stiff wind in center without any issues.

‘‘He looked very smooth,’’ Renteria said.

That may or may not help him stay after the All-Star break. Either way, he has given the Cubs plenty to think about when they decide what to do with the first of the top prospects to arrive at Wrigley Field.

‘‘I just try to do my job every time [I] come to the field,’’ Alcantara said.

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