Now that’s the team we thought we were getting this offseason. Can we move to the Central?
For the first three innings, the Braves were hitting the ball hard with nothing to show for it, while Derek Lowe was shutting down the Brewers. Since we knew the latter couldn’t last, it was a little worrisome. Hinske, playing left field again, broke through with an RBI double to score Glaus and make it 1-0. Heyward, in the third spot again, walked with one out in the sixth, then stole second, coming home on a two-out single by Glaus. The Braves couldn’t score another run that inning, winding up leaving the bases loaded.
I could just feel what was about to happen, as Lowe gave up three straight singles to start the bottom of the sixth, then Fielder just missed a three-run homer and Jody Gerut stupidly tried to steal third, getting thrown out. Lowe still couldn’t get out of the inning with the lead, allowing a two-out double to tie the game at 2, but it could have been much worse.
Diaz led off the seventh with a pinch double, and McLouth — who just looks awful right now and obviously has some sort of problem — bunted him to third. Prado couldn’t get Diaz home, but of course Heyward had his back and doubled past first base to make it 3-2. McCann followed with a single to make it 4-2.
In the eighth, Conrad hit a two-run homer to give the bullpen some breathing room, 6-2. The ninth was a pathetic sight, the once-great Trevor Hoffman completely unable to do anything right. He walked Heyward and McCann, then after a popup by Glaus allowed a pinch double by Chipper. He got a flyout from Infante, but Conrad followed with a two-run double to make it 9-2, and finally Melky had to put the inning out of its misery by striking out looking.
Moylan, Saito, and Wagner finished up the game; you don’t normally want that, but Wagner in particular needed to get some work in; he wasn’t sharp and allowed a hit and a walk and needed 30 pitches (only half of them strikes) to get through the ninth.