For Julio Teheran, Nationals Park is the antithesis of SunTrust Park. It is too bad for him, then, that he pitches for the Braves, but it’s nice for Braves fans to have him go into Washington and shut the Nationals out time after time. Another shutout performance from him over seven innings earned him his 11th win, and brought his record to .500 for the season. Would that he could learn to successfully pitch at home!
Julio’s mound opponent was none other than Gio Gonzalez, he of the 2.68 ERA this season. With the Nationals in the fine-tuning for the postseason portion of the year (a postseason that will, hopefully, be over in three games), the Braves offense went out and torched Gonzalez for five runs over five innings, and then tacked on three more against the Washington bullpen, just because they could. Three of the Braves runs came on a Freddie Freeman home run, as Freddie proved once again that he loves hitting on his birthday. He ended the evening 3-for-5 with two runs scored, and looked like he was having fun at the end of a lost season. He’s so easy to root for. And he’s in his 7th season in the major leagues and only 28. I feel old.
Because the Nationals clinched on Sunday, this was the first game of the season the Braves have played that literally meant nothing. Stomping the Nationals and Gio Gonzalez is always nice, though, even when it is completely meaningless.