Not as much of a slog as last night’s overtime loss, and the result was far more enjoyable.
At first, it looked quite similar to last night. Julio Teheran did not look as sharp as he did in his previous start against the Nats. He put on the first two men he saw in each of the first three innings of the game. Not pretty. But he was able to get out of all of these jams (and others…) in part with some unlikely defensive help. The Braves had theirBobby Cox Sunday Special lineup in, and give the marathon last night, it made sense. The only full-time guys who started were Freddie Freeman and Chris Johnson. This means that in the outfield corners, you had Oso Blanco in left and Joey Terds in right. This is not the group that has given Atlanta one of the best outfield defenses in the majors. What you might expect from this is miscues like the dropped popup in the 3rd that, with runners on first and second, should obviously have been an infield fly. It didn’t hurt the Braves because after he and Gattis couldn’t decide who was supposed catch it, Paul Janish (getting the start at SS) managed to get the force at 3rd. What you would not expect was that both Gattis and Joey Terds would have great running catches to keep Teheran’s sheet clean. Good job, boys!
The offense seemed to have some rhythm against Nats starter Geo Gonzalez. Things looked good in the first after BJ Upton walked and stole second in front of Phil Gosselin, getting the start at 2B, who recorded his first major league hit by beating out what looked at first like a sacrifice bunt. Two runs would eventually come across and, despite threatening a couple other times, that would be all the Braves would get against Gonzalez.
But that would be enough. Scott Downs and David Carpenter combined to give up a run in the 7th, but Jordan Walden was great in the 8th and Craig Kimbrel struck out the side, giving up only an infield single. Best part was, the last out was a check-swing punch-out of Bryce Harper. It was a close thing, which meant we got to watch him whine to the 3rd base umpire as the Braves congratulated each other on the field.
So not quite a sweep, but 2 out of 3 ain’t bad. And the Dodgers lost, which is also nice.