Nothing like a visit with the Inspirational Keith Lockhart to spark a Braves’ sweep. The Braves handled the Padres pretty handily for a four-game sweep. Giles drove in three and Vinny hit another homer, and Russ Ortiz threw a whole lot of pitches. Pretty typical, except for the suddenly red-hot Vinny.
Take that, Bobby: Giles’ first two RBI came on “single” that was actually a misplayed popup. The misplayer? Lockhart, of course, who Bobby just had to have in the lineup for defense last year. Ha. Rasputin did hit a late homer for the Padres which only served to make it a save situation for Smoltz.
A good Ortiz line: 7 innings, 2 runs, 7 hits, 7 Ks, and no walks. And 118 pitches. This is the same sort of thing that Dusty Baker did to Russ in San Fran; I hope he doesn’t break. I think there’s just a little missing there and that he’s just a minor adjustment from greatness, but people have thought that before.
The Braves are now 31-13, a .705 winning percentage. With an Expos loss, their lead in the division is now four, and six and a half over the Phillies. It has to be frustrating for any Expos fans that still exist; in a division where analysts were saying before the season that .550 baseball would win it, they’re playing .614 baseball and falling further behind.
Tomorrow is an off day, then the Braves start a three-gamer with Cincinnati. The Reds score a lot of runs and give up a lot of runs. No team in the majors has hit more homers than the Reds (the Rangers have as many in one fewer game) and only the Blue Jays have allowed more.