Shelby Miller channeled his inner Harry Houdini in the first two innings when he got himself into and then promptly out of some sticky jams. In the first the Rockies got runners on the corners with one out, and then loaded the bases in the second with no outs. They Barved both situations up by getting exactly zero runs. In the midst of a season full of great futility, it is quite refreshing at times to see other teams squander golden opportunities.
To reward him for his efforts, the Braves offense gifted Miller with one run in the bottom of the second. Their generosity is to be applauded. If Shelby knew how to win, that lead would have been all he needed.
That run seemed to give Shelby the spark he needed, and he got on a roll, retiring Rockie after Rockie. Then the Braves sixth inning happened. Jonny Gomes and Adonis Garcia led off the inning with back-to-back jacks to give Shelby a three-run lead. Jace Peterson followed with a ground-rule double on his way to a three-hit, two-sacrifice night. He’s been scuffling so much, that offensive production was a sight for sore eyes. The Braves couldn’t scratch across that fourth run, though, and left Jace stranded at third with the bases loaded. You can’t really blame them, though; getting three whole runs for Shelby Miller was already quite the undertaking.
The last time Shelby was the beneficiary of that kind of offense was around the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and he was overwhelmed by it all. He immediately gave up the first Rockie hit since the second inning, then gave up another, and another, and another, and another, and before the dust had settled and the Braves had the chance to grab their bats again, Shelby was out of the game and the Rockies had the lead. His winless streak now ranks #1 in Atlanta history.
Edwin Jackson put the icing on the cake with a two-run eighth, ensuring that any crazy thoughts the Braves might have entertained about coming back to win the game were promptly squashed.
The positive that came out of this series is that it took place at Turner Field, so the Braves only lost the series and did not get swept. Dare we hope for a similarly good result for this weekend’s series against the Yankees?