One day we’ll find out what Bobby’s obsession with using Jesse Chavez in close games is. I really don’t understand why this guy is in the major leagues, much less why you’d use him in a tie game if you had any choice in the matter. The only other pitchers left in the eleventh were Kimbrel and the Lisp, plus Wagner (who was being saved for a potential save situation) but I’d use a position player before Chavez. He’s awful. He walked the leadoff man, was given an out on a bunt, then allowed a game-losing single to the .222-hitting backup catcher, because Jesse Chavez sucks. Gregor Blanco made a terrible, terrible throw on the play, and the runner should have been out at the plate, but I don’t think that excuses Chavez.
Tim Hudson, meanwhile, showed that if you keep letting them put the ball in play, you will eventually get burned. After the Braves took a 4-1 lead in the fifth with a pair of homers, one by Prado and one by McCann, he gave it right back in the bottom of the inning. Furcal hit a solo homer, then the next man reached on an Infante error (which easily could have been scored an infield single), Ethier doubled, and Loney singled to tie it.
The Braves had a lot of opportunities to retake the lead, most notably in the ninth, when Conrad led off with a double. Prado struck, out, then Conrad stole third, then Infante and Heyward struck out too. In the tenth, Melky struck out on a 3-2 pitch at his feet. After two innings of insanely good work by Venters (six up, six down, four by strikeout) the Braves had a plane to catch so Bobby brought in Chavez.