Eleven in a Row! And Three Sweeps!!

Wow! This has been an amazing run for the Atlanta Braves. Yes, they got off to a slow start this season, and it seemed like they couldn’t get things going on a consistent basis, but now, they are untouchable. Everything is clicking on all cylinders where and when it needs too! With these eleven wins in a row, they have moved from 10 games out of first to now only 5.5 games out of first, behind the New York Mets.

Some may scoff and say that they have swept three teams who aren’t considered the best, but sometimes it has been hard for Atlanta to win against the “easier” teams. They proved in this series that they are still the World Series-caliber team that they were last year.

There were SO MANY positives that came from these eleven games, here are some that stood out to me:


In order to win ballgames, your starting pitchers need to go deep into them. Some of the Braves starters have struggled with pitching deep into games earlier in the season. However, over the past week and a half, they were looking very sharp. Even Charlie Morton, who still has not gotten back to the Charlie Morton we saw last season, pitched 6 innings on Saturday. He did not get the win, but it was nice to see him pitch deeper than four or five innings; plus he had 12 strikeouts over those 6 innings.

The three starting performances that stood out were:

  • Max Fried’s 8 scoreless innings pitched on June 3 against the Colorado Rockies. Everything was going for Fried that night. He was untouchable! In those eight scoreless innings, he only allowed two hits, one walk, and he only had four strikeouts. He was dominant on the mound and got those ground ball outs that he’s known for getting. It was a shame he didn’t get the win. (In this game the Braves and Rockies went into extras with a scoreless tie.)
  • Kyle Wright’s 8 innings against the Oakland Athletics on June seventh. In those eight innings, Wright only allowed five hits, two runs, zero walks, and had seven strikeouts. He showed a lot of dominance on the mound and proved that he can pitch late into ballgames and have the same amount of sharpness (if not more) than he started the game with. Kyle Wright is a good young pitcher, and the Braves are lucky to have him.
  • Spencer Striders scoreless performance on June tenth against the Pittsburg Pirates. For Spencer Strider to have started the season in the bullpen, he is a great starter. He can throw 101 MPH and make it look easy as can be. He has a great slider and a really good fastball. He has come through huge for the Braves and has made a good impact in the starting rotation. In this start against the Pirates, he pitched 5.2 innings, allowed four hits, zero runs, one walk, and he had eight strikeouts. Overall it was a very good performance.


Alongside the Braves starting pitching, the relief core has been lights-out as well. They have kept us in close ball games and preserved late inning leads when they mattered most. Kenley Jansen, who at first made us all nervous every time he came out to pitch, has finally found his groove and is closing games like we saw him close for the Dodgers. No drama, he just comes in and gets the job done.

Will Smith is the same way. He started off the season very similarly to how he did last year where he got into a lot of high-stress situations. But Today (June 12th), he came into the game against the Pirates in the seventh inning and shut down the side while only throwing nine pitches. Hopefully he, along with everyone else in the bullpen, can keep up the good work.


Getting hits, timely ones at that, was often time hard to come by for the Braves’ hitters early on in the season. But in these past eleven games, it’s been hard to get them out!! Lately, Atlanta has found all kinds of ways to get on base — hit, walk, hit-by-pitch, error, etc. But all that matters is they are getting on base and scoring!

In these eleven games, the Atlanta offense hit 22 home runs. Two of which were grand slams…one was by Braves’ catcher Travis d’Arnaud and the other by second baseman Ozzie Albies. d’Arnaud’s came on Thursday, June 2nd in Colorado when the Braves won 13-6, and Ozzie’s came against the Pirates on Saturday when they won 10-4. In the final game of the series against the Pittsburg Pirates, Adam Duvall, who had been struggling a little at the plate, hit two home runs. One he pulled, and the other he smoked to opposite field in the Chop House. Both were huge, and it was so good to see him hit the ball out of the ballpark again…he definitely needed it!

This Atlanta Braves hitting core has been SO fun to watch! They have been so active on the base-pads, and you can see it in how they play. Their faces show that they are enjoying playing ball just as much- if not more- than us fans who are watching them!


This kid!!! He has impressed me and the Braves organization on so many levels. For him to have skipped Triple-A and come straight from Double-A to the Majors is remarkable. But, you can see why the Braves brought him up when they did. He is HOT right now. Not to mention Harris Jr. is a very good outfielder! He has made multiple plays in center field that have left me in awe of how he even got to the baseball, let alone make the catch. Harris has definitely bolstered the outfield and the bottom of the lineup. All in all, he has been a great addition to this red-hot Atlanta Braves team.

It has been so enjoyable to finally see all of the Braves’ handwork pay off and for them to start playing like we know they are very capable of doing. Hopefully they can keep it up as they head to Washington D.C. to play the Nationals tomorrow!

Always and forever, GO BRAVES!

My Takeaways From Braves vs Rockies Series:

A sweep! This was Atlanta’s first sweep of the season, and boy did the Braves need it! Not only did this series give them their first sweep, it allowed them to have a five game win streak (the Braves won their last game in Arizona before heading to Colorado), and the Atlanta Braves now have an over .500 record of 28-27. This series has proven that the Braves are capable of being the good, strong team we know them to be. Hopefully, it will prove to be a good turnaround to get them going in the right direction.



All of the Atlanta starters in this series pitched very well. Max Fried especially had an outstanding performance. He pitched eight scoreless innings, allowed only two hits, one walk, he had four strikeouts, and ended his night with 102 pitches. Fried never seemed like he was uncomfortable on the mound and he showed much dominance throughout his performance.

The Braves bullpen has been questionable, to say the least, throughout the start of the season. However, in this series they were quite good. The Atlanta Braves won two games in extra innings… TWO! One of those games was scoreless until they scored in the 10th inning. And in another one of the games, the Braves didn’t capture the lead until the 11th inning. With Matzek on the IL, it was a known fact that people were going to have to start stepping up in the bullpen…and they have finally started to come through! Although he still has a flare for the dramatic, Will Smith has pitched pretty well, and Kenley Jansen is showing he can be that super-star closer that he was with the Dodgers.


At the start of the season, the Braves had a hard time getting runners on base. And when they got runners on base, they had an even harder time scoring them. It also seemed that they relied on a couple guys in the lineup to get on base, score, etc. However, all that has started to change. 1-9 in the Braves lineup came through in this series. Every player contributed in one way or another. They took their walks when they needed to, moved runners over, scored multiple times throughout an inning, and scored in multiple innings.

It was also nice to see Travis d’Arnaud and Adam Duvall get some good hits. Travis hit two home runs in the first game of the series, one of which was a Grand Slam!! He also continued to get hits of any kind. Duvall hit a home run in this series but he also had some doubles, singles, and a triple! It was nice to see Adam Duvall reduce his amount of strikeouts over these four games. Yes, everyone is bound to strike out, but he seemed to do it an awful lot. But in this series he showed much improvement in his pitch selection and how deep he allowed his counts.

The Atlanta Braves are currently 8.5 games behind the first place Mets, but with how the Braves have been playing lately, hopefully they will move closer in the standings and continue to win ball games at their full capacity.


Braves vs. Brewers Series Wrap

Welcome back Duvy! The Braves acquired three new players at the trade deadline: Jorge Soler from the Kansas City Royals, Richard Rodríguez from the Pittsburg Pirates, and former Brave Adam Duvall from the Miami Marlins.

Game One: Touki Toussaint vs. Corbin Burnes, Braves lost 9-5

This game started off great for the Braves. But after the third inning, things went downhill fast.

Touki Toussaint only went 3.1 innings. In his very brief outing, he allowed six hits, seven runs, two walks, and he had five strikeouts. His stuff was no where near as sharp as it was in his previous two outings. Not to mention he could not command the strike zone, and the his pitch count was crazy. It seemed like all the pitches he threw, Milwaukee almost always found a way to him them!

Although the Braves lost… they still scored some runs. Actually, all of their runs except one came in the bottom of the first inning! On the very first pitch of the bottom of the first, Joc Pederson had a single. Ozzie Albies had a ground out to advance Pederson to second and make the first out of the inning. Freddie Freeman had an RBI-single that scored Joc Pederson and made it 1-0 Braves. With a 1-0 lead, Austin Riley was up to bat. He added onto Atlanta’s lead with a gigantic two-run homer; making it a 3-0 game. And then, to add another run to their lead, Stephen Vogt had an RBI-single that scored Dansby Swanson, and extended the Braves lead to 4-0.

Despite a 4-0 lead, Toussaint couldn’t keep it for Atlanta. In the top of the third inning, the Brewers came back to tie it up at 4-4. They scored one run on an RBI sac fly and the other three on a home run by Avisail Garcia- the Brewers’ right fielder. Milwaukee broke the tie in the top of the fourth inning, when they scored four more runs, giving them an 8-4 lead.

The Braves scored one more run in the bottom of the fifth inning on an RBI-single by Adam Duvall to make it an 8-5 game.

In the top of the ninth inning, as if a four run lead wasn’t enough, Eduardo Escobar, the Brewers’ second baseman, hit a solo home run. That made the final score of the game 9-5 Milwaukee.

Atlanta had ten hits in this game… TEN. Their offense had plenty of chances to score, they just came up empty handed every time. It seemed like, after the first inning, the Braves’ bats ran out of gas. If their offense can’t score when they need to…they’re going to have an even harder time winning more than one game in a row.

Game Two: Kyle Muller vs Brandon Woodruff, Braves won 8-1

This was Dansby Swanson’s game! He had three hits, including two home runs, and seven RBIs. SEVEN! Oh, and not to mention one of those home runs was a GRAND SLAM. Wow!

The Brewers scored their one and only run in the top of the second inning. It came on an RBI forceout by Manny Pina- Milwaukee’s catcher.

Atlanta tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the fourth inning, on a first-pitch RBI-single.

The Braves did not score again until the bottom of the sixth inning. To start off that inning, Adam Duvall had a single. To follow his single, Jorge Soler had a strikeout. And then, to break the 1-1 tie, Dansby Swanson hit a two-run bomb. His home run made it 3-1 Atlanta.

To start the bottom of the seventh inning, Joc Pederson had a strikeout. My man, Ozzie Albies followed Joc with a single. Freeman had a single that advanced Ozzie to second, and then Austin Riley had a walk to load the bases. Jorge Soler had an RBI-single that scored Ozzie to make it a 4-1 game. Adam Duvall had a strikeout to make the second out of the inning. So with the bases still loaded and two out, Atlanta had a perfect chance to score again… and they did! Dansby Swanson came up to bat with the bases loaded, he homered in his previous at-bat. After working a 2-2 count, Swanson made contact with a slider and it went a long way. It was a grand slam!! Dansby has been hitting well in his last few games at the plate, and it continued in this game. His grand slam made it an 8-1 game. That score was the final score of the game.

Game Three: Charlie Morton vs. Brett Anderson, Braves lost 2-1

This was a rare loss from Charlie Morton. However, he did not pitch a bad game at all. He went six innings, allowed three hits, two runs, ZERO walks, and he had six strikeouts. His stuff wasn’t bad at all…the real reason he lost this game was lack of offense from the rest of the Braves team.

The Brewers scored their first run in the top of the first inning. It came on a first-pitch home run by Willy Adames, Milwaukee’s shortstop. That gave them a 1-0 lead early. They scored their second and final run on an RBI-groundout in the top of the fifth inning. That made it a 2-0 game.

To get the Atlanta Braves on the board, Austin Riley had an RBI-single that scored Ozzie Albies, who singled earlier that inning. Austin’s single made it a 2-1 game in the bottom of the sixth.

The Braves could not come up with any more offense throughout the rest of that game. Leaving us with yet another loss after a win.

Atlanta has had a hard time putting together multiple wins in a row. As a matter of fact, after the end of this series, the Atlanta Braves haven’t won two games in a row since before the All-Star break. Come on, Bravos. Get those bats smoking!

Braves vs. Mets Series Wrap

This was a crucial five game series for the Atlanta Braves. The New York Mets are in first place in the National League East and are the Braves biggest threat. Atlanta did take three out of five games in the series, but after the whole series, they only gained one game on the Mets.

Game One: Kyle Muller vs. Marcus Stroman, Braves won 2-0; game one of doubleheader

This was a well-played game of baseball for the Braves. Their starting pitching was excellent- so was the bullpen, and Atlanta’s hitters provided just enough offense to allowed them to beat the Mets in this game.

Kyle Muller pitched excellent. He went five innings, allowed four hits, ZERO runs, two walks, and three strikeouts. Muller’s outing on the mound was solid. His stuff was good, he had good command of the strike zone and his pitch count. Not to mention he had a single and scored. His impressive start was the foundation of the Braves win.

In the top of the third inning Guillermo Heredia led off with a double, Kyle Muller followed him with a single, and then Joc Pederson had an RBI-double that scored Heredia and got the Braves on the board with a 1-0 lead.

Atlanta scored their second and final run in the top of the fourth inning. Dansby Swanson led off that inning with a double, and was followed with a single by Stephen Vogt that advanced Swanson to third. Orlando Arcia grounded into a force-out that got Vogt out at second. However, Arcia’s out scored Dansby from third and made it a 2-0 Braves lead.

The Braves bullpen came on and was lights out. Combined, Tyler Matzek and Will Smith went two innings, allowed only one hit, zero runs, zero walks, and one strikeout. They backed up a solid start from Kyle Muller with a good bullpen outing, which led to a Braves win.

Game Two: Bryse Wilson vs. Aaron Loup, Braves lost 1-0; game two of doubleheader

This was a low-scoring, suspenseful game for both the Braves and the Mets. Unfortunately, Atlanta’s bullpen had one slip-up that cost them a run, and that run cost them the game.

Bryse Wilson had a decent outing for Atlanta. He only went three innings. But in those three innings he allowed four hits, ZERO runs, one walk, and he had two strikeouts. This outing for Wilson was much better than the previous ones he had made for the Braves.

Atlanta’s bullpen was doing a very good job in relief of Bryse Wilson. However, in the bottom of the fifth inning, with Luke Jackson on the mound, Jeff McNeil had an RBI double that scored Brandon Nimmo from first who reached base via a single earlier that inning. McNiel’s double gave the Mets the lead at 1-0 and that was the ONLY run scored in that ENTIRE game.

Despite Luke Jackson surrendering the only run of the game, Atlanta’s bullpen pitched very well, and it was a very well-played game of baseball. It just would’ve been better if the Braves could have pulled together some offense and won!

Game Three: Charlie Morton vs. Jerad Eickhoff, Braves won 12-5

Atlanta played this game very well from all standpoints. Their offense was fantastic, starting pitching was very good, and the bullpen was great.

Charlie Morton pitched five innings for the Braves, allowed five hits, three runs, two walks, and he had five strikeouts. I was surprised that Brian Snitker took Morton out after only five innings. His pitch count wasn’t high – only 89 pitches, and he hadn’t had many high-stress situations. I don’t know if he was simply tired or if Snitker saw something that Morton did that he didn’t like… I guess we’ll never know.

The Braves started their scoring early and kept scoring throughout the entire game!

In the top of the first inning, Ehire Adrianza was hit by a pitch to start the game. Ozzie Albies and Freddie Freeman followed him with back-to-back walks to load the bases with Braves and no outs. Austin Riley grounded into a force out, which got Adrianza out at home and allowed Austin to stand on first with one out. With one out, Dansby Swanson was up to bat. He hit a booming double into left field that scored Ozzie and Freeman, making it 2-0 Braves.

Atlanta scored again in the top of the second inning when my man, Ozzie Albies hit a first-pitch, two-run bomb into the seats in right field. It was loud and it went far! His home run gave the Braves a 4-0 lead. Abraham Almonte added on to the Braves lead it the top of the third inning with a two-run homer that scored Swanson and make it 6-0 all Atlanta!

In the bottom of the third inning, the Mets got on the board when Pete Alonso hit an RBI single making a 6-1 game.

To start off the top of the fourth inning, Charlie Morton had a single. Adrianza followed Morton with a double that advanced Charlie to third. Albies struck out to make the first out of the inning, and then Freddie Freeman was intentionally walked to load the bases with Braves. With the bases loaded, Austin Riley was up to bat. Austin hit a GRAND SLAM to left field to make it a 10-1 Atlanta lead! He had been red-hot in the previous series with the Phillies, and in the beginning of this series. His bat has come to life for Atlanta when they’ve needed him most, and he came through big in that situation.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, New York made it a 10-3 three game when Jeff McNiel hit a two-run homer, which allowed Brandon Drury to score. Drury reached base earlier in that inning with a single.

The Braves scored their last two runs in the top of the sixth inning. Austin Riley hit another home run – his second of the night, a two-run shot that scored Freeman and made it a 12-3 game- all Atlanta.

The Mets got two runs closer in the bottom of the seventh inning when Brandon Drury hit a two-run home run, making it a 12-5 game. But they couldn’t conjure up any more offense, and the Braves won with a final score of 12-5.

Game Four: Max Fried vs. Tylor Megill, Braves lost 2-1

Well, if you wanted another suspenseful game, this was it.

Max Fried pitched great for Atlanta. He went seven innings, allowed five hits, two runs, two walks, and he had nine strikeouts. Fried never had any real high-stress pitches. He just hung two pitches to two different New York batters, and that cost him a win, and the game for Atlanta.

The Mets got on the board first when their second baseman, Jeff McNiel had an RBI single that scored pitcher Tyler Megill to give them a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third.

Atlanta tied the game in the top of the sixth inning when red-hot Riley hit a gigantic solo home run to straight away center. His home run made it a 1-1 game, and got the Braves back into the game.

However, in the bottom of the seventh inning, the Mets broke the scoreless tie when Brandon Drury hit a solo home run making it a 2-1 game; New York on top. Fried hung a curveball over the plate and Drury did not miss it. A rare mistake from Max Fried was the difference in the game.

Atlanta had a chance to score in the top of the ninth inning, but a good, strong throw from Mets’ right fielder didn’t allowed that to happen, and New York sealed their 2-1 win.

Game Five: Drew Smyly vs. Taijuan Walker, Braves won 6-3

Drew Smyly only pitched four innings. In those four innings he allowed nine hits, three runs, one walk, and he had six strikeouts. He only threw 85 pitches, but he had runners all over the place in all four of those inning and it was a miracle Smyly didn’t surrender more than three runs to the Mets.

New York started the scoring in the bottom of the third inning when Dominic Smith had an RBI-single that scored Brandon Nimmo, to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. Smith was thrown out by Joc Pederson in right field while trying to advance to second base.

In the top of the fourth inning, the Braves got on the board with a two-run bomb from Austin Riley that scored my man Ozzie albies (he walked to start off the fourth inning) and gave Atlanta a 2-1 lead. Following a groundout by Dansby Swanson, Abraham Almonte hit a solo home run extending the Braves lead to 3-1.

Atlanta added onto their lead again in the top of the fifth inning. Guillermo Heredia led off the inning with a single. He was followed by a strikeout of Drew Smyly and then Joc Pederson singled, advancing Heredia to third. So with two on and one out, Ozzie Albies was up to bat. Ozzie had an RBI-single that scored Heredia and made it a 4-1 game. After my man, Ozzie’s single, Freddie Freeman struck out. With two outs, and still two on, Austin Riley was up to bat. He hit another Atlanta RBI-single that scored Pederson and made it 5-1 Braves.

The Mets got new life in the game when Pete Alonso hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth inning. His home run made it a 5-3 game.

However, in the top of the eighth inning, Dansby Swanson hit a solo home run making it 6-3. His home run gave Atlanta some insurance, and the motivation to push through and win.

This was a crucial series win for Atlanta. If they got swept by the Mets, let alone lost four of the five games, the Braves’ shot of making the postseason would have been as good as gone. But no, our beloved Atlanta Braves won the series and still have a shot in the division. However, in order for that to happen, the Braves need to really focus on winning games – and winning more than one game in a row. Atlanta has not won any consecutive games in a row since before the All-Star break. That has to change…and soon!!

A Wrap of the Braves First Half of the Season

To say the least, it was a chaotic, unstable, and disappointing first half for the Atlanta Braves. They did not end the first half of the season with a winning record, let alone a .500 record. They entered the All-Star break with a losing record of 44-45.

Inconsistency was a big factor in that. Their pitching was all over the place – especially the bullpen. In their starting rotation, Charlie Morton was the only reliable one. And that is still somewhat true coming into this second half of the season. Drew Smyly has gotten more consistent, as well as Max Fried and Ian Anderson. But Atlanta’s bullpen was, and is, the main problem. Their bullpen couldn’t keep a Braves’ lead in a tight scoring game or keep the run differential close in a situation where the Braves were losing. Another problem that their pitching staff has is that they walk WAY too many batters. It seems almost every time pitchers walk a guy, they come back and score. Walks will always come back to haunt a pitcher. They’ve also had some closer problems: AJ Minter and Will Smith. They come on to pitch in the ninth inning, and it seems like they try to find a way to blow the game. They walk batters, give up home runs, allow hits and runs galore. This season they have given up almost 30 hits, 30 runs, and over 20 walks. They doesn’t pitch every single day, but those aren’t the numbers you want to see from your closers.

The Braves have also been tortured with injuries. The most significant of those would be the most recent: Ronald Acuña Jr. is out of the rest of the season. And, of course, his season-ending injury came against the Miami Marlins. In game two of the most recent series played with Miami (July 10th), Acuña was trying to field a well-hit ball at the warning track in right field. He ran full speed towards the baseball in mid-air and missed. He then fell and put all of his body weight on his right knee, which buckled under all the pressure. He then collapsed, and after being carted off the field, he was examined and he’d torn his right ACL. He had to have immediate surgery, and he will miss the rest of the 2021 season.

Atlanta will now have to finish their 2021 season without their young superstar. Obviously things will be different offensively and defensively, but I don’t think this takes them out of postseason chances. The Braves will just have to work harder and play a better. And if they do make it to the postseason, it will prove just how good this Atlanta Braves team really is.

Another injury- which turned into a shocking blow, came in the month of May. This came from Marcell Ozuna. On May 26th, against the Boston Red Sox, Ozuna fractured two fingers sliding into third base. He was sent to Atlanta for examination and treatment. Three days later, on May 29th an article was released that he had been arrested for domestic family violence. That was certainly a shocking and unexpected blow for the Braves. Not only is he hurt and won’t be able to play this season… but he was arrested, and got out of jail not too long ago. So he is definitely done for this season, if not for the rest of his career.

The Braves also lost Travis d’Arnaud to a torn left thumb ligament. He tore it on May 1st and has been on the injured list since. Hopefully he can come back in mid-August. He is such a good player, and it’s a shame for him to not be able to play.

The final injury that I’m going to discuss is that of Huascar Ynoa. Ynoa had pitched some with the Braves in relief during the 2019 and 2020 seasons, but his career as a starting pitcher really began this season. And boy, was he impressive! In fact, he was probably the best pitcher Atlanta had AND he could hit. In seventeen at-bats, he had six hits, and two home runs – one of witch was a grand slam. A GRAND SLAM!! He was beyond impressive at the plate and on the mound.

However, after a frustrating start on the mound for Huascar, he went into the Braves dugout and punched the bench. Nothing was said of it during the game in mid-May. But after his hand was evaluated, he had broken it. So disappointing. He was such an impressive young player and had (hopefully still has) such a great career ahead of him. He was, is, and will be missed by the Braves. Ynoa’s return date isn’t clear, but it is not expected until after the middle of August.

Although the Braves had many struggles and hard times in the first half of the season, they had shining moments that gave us hope that the Atlanta Braves we know and love are still with us!

Up to his season-ending injury, Ronald Acuña Jr. had an amazing season. He hit twenty-four home runs… TWENTY-FOUR! That is an insane amount. Multiple players across MLB don’t hit that many home runs in an entire 162-game season. He definitely had some sparks coming off his bat almost every time he was at the plate. Acuña was to make his second All-Star Game appearance as a starter this year, but obviously his injury robbed him of that great opportunity. He also led all of MLB players in All-Star votes. Wow!

Ozzie Albies had a great first half to his 2021 season. No, he hasn’t hit as many home runs as Acuña, nor is he the “face of the franchise,” but he is just as good – if not better than Acuña. He leads the Braves in RBI’s with 63, and he leads them in doubles with 27. Not only is Ozzie impressive at the plate, he is extremely impressive on the field. His defensive skills are through the roof! He may be smaller than everyone else… but he can run fast, field well, and make super hard plays look easy. My Ozzie is a consistent, reliable player that the Braves can count on. He was also voted into the All-Star game – and he got to play! It was his second appearance, and he wasn’t a starter, even though he should have been. Albies is such a fun player to watch, and I can’t wait to see what he continues to bring for Atlanta the rest of the season!

Freddie Freeman got off to a very, very slow first few weeks for Atlanta, but he finally started to heat up and look like the MVP Freddie we are used too. Coming into the break (and even now out of the break) his bat was hot. He was hitting extra base hits galore. Before his bat came to life, all he did was walk…or strikeout. Freeman was also awarded the honor of being in the All-Star game. It was his fifth All-Star appearance, and he was a starter.

There are SO MANY good things that have happened already for the Braves this season – even with them having a losing record and their struggles. However, with their two newly added players: outfielder Joc Pederson and catcher Stephen Vogt, I believe that Atlanta will hit a streak where everything starts to click and they will get to a winning record. They really need to put some major pressure on the first place Mets in the NL East.

Braves vs. Mets Series Wrap

What a series! What should have been a sweep of the New York Mets turned into an exciting, stress-filled series! The Atlanta Braves won the series, winning two out of three. Atlanta’s offense really came to life in these three games… but it was an especially good series for their second baseman- my man Ozzie Albies. He had a total of seven hits in these three games against division rivals, the New York Mets. Most of his hits were HUGE for the Braves, not to mention he had an OUTSTANDING game at the plate in game two of this series.

Game One: Tylor Megill vs. Charlie Morton, Braves lost 4-3

The Braves did not have a “bad game” they just had one pitching slip-up, that ended up costing them game one of this series.

Charlie Morton went six innings for the Braves. He gave up five hits, three runs, one walk and he had seven strikeouts. The seventh inning was where Charlie struggled a little bit. He started the inning with a lead off single, followed by a walk and then he gave up the game tying home run to James McCann. Morton was taken out of the game after he surrendered the home run. He didn’t pitch a bad game at all; he just hung a pitch, and McCann didn’t miss it.

The game was a scoreless tie going into the bottom of the fifth inning. After Contreras and Morton both got out to start the inning, Acuña and Freeman both reached base via a single. My Ozzie was up to bat. On the very FIRST PITCH he saw, he CRUSHED it out of the ballpark into straightaway center. He was pumped, the ballpark was ecstatic…it was a HUGE hit for him AND the Braves!!

After Charlie Morton gave up the home run in the top of the seventh to tie the game at three, A.J. Minter was brought on to pitch. He got an out, gave up a double, got another out, and then gave up an RBI single to Fransisco Lindor to break the tie and give the Mets the lead 4-3. In my personal opinion, Minter needs to be sent down to Triple-A. In almost every single appearance from the bullpen, he gives up at least one run. Not to mention, a lot of those runs he gives up are in close games, or tied games like this one.

That seventh inning blew the game for Atlanta, and they couldn’t get anymore offense together to attempt to win.

Game Tw0: Max Fried vs. David Peterson, Braves won 20-2

What a game for Ozzie Albies! He was 5-for-7 at the plate, with TWO home runs, THREE singles, and SEVEN runs batted in. Not to mention… this was his first career five hit game!!

Things got off to a shaky start for Max Fried and the Braves. Fried gave up a two-run homer to Pete Alonso in the top of the first to start the game…but it was ALL Braves after that.

Bottom of the first: Ronald Acuña Jr. leads off with a home run, making it a 2-1 game. Freeman follows his homer with a one-pitch single. He advanced to second base (which got him into scoring position) on a wild pitch. My man, Ozzie Albies took advantage of New York’s pitchers slip-up, and had an RBI single that tied the game at two a piece. They scored two more runs in the bottom of the third when Austin Riley had a line drive single, scoring Freeman and Ozzie, and making it 4-2 Atlanta.

Bottom of the fourth: Abraham Almonte led off the inning with a one-pitch double. Braves catcher, Kevan Smith had an RBI single that scored Almonte. That made the score 5-2, Braves on top. Max Fried was batting… he hit into a fielders choice. However, Mets pitcher Sean Reid-Foley, who was fresh outta the bullpen, had a throwing error that allowed Smith to advance to third base and for Fried to advance to second. Ronald Acuña Jr. made the first out of the inning with a groundout.

Even though there was one out, the Braves weren’t done yet! Freddie Freeman had an RBI single to score Kevan Smith, and then Ozzie followed him with his second RBI single of the night to score Fried. Austin Riley followed those two singles with yet another RBI single! Those three singles once again extended Atlanta’s lead, it was now an 8-2 game. Dansby Swanson reached base on a walk to load the bases with Braves. Guillermo Heredia had a two-RBI double to extend the Braves lead even more. Almonte had the final offensive blow (of that inning) with an RBI groundout to score Dansby Swanson. Making it 11-2… ALL Atlanta!

After two quick outs of Fried and Acuña to start the fifth inning, Freeman kept it alive with a double. So, with one on and two out, my Ozzie was up to bat. He absolutely SMOKED a ball into the seats in left field for a two-run BOMB!! That was his third hit of the night…he was 3-for-3. Ehire Adrianza, who came into the game to replace Acuña, hit a home run in his first plate-appearance of the night! It was a first-pitch bomb, once again extending the Braves lead, 14-2.

Bottom of the eighth inning: Heredia led off the inning with a ground-rule double. He was followed by two back-to-back walks – one to Kevan Smith and the other to Abraham Almonte. Ender Inciarte, who was pinch-hitting, walked with the bases loaded to score another Atlanta run. Then, with the bases still loaded, Panda was up to bat. He was hit with a pitch (non-intentional, of course), but it scored another Braves run, making it 16-2. Adrianza had an RBI groundout to score the Braves catcher (Kevan Smith), and then my Ozzie CRUSHED and absolute NO DOUBTER into right center field for his SECOND home run of the night, his FIFTH hit, and it made the Braves lead a whopping 20-2. Wooohooo!!

This was an extremely exciting game! Especially for me since I am a die-hard Ozzie Albies fan.

Game Three: Ian Anderson vs. Jacob deGrom, Braves won 4-3

What a great way for the Atlanta Braves to end the series with the Mets. They not only won the series, but also scored three runs off of Jacob deGrom – the most runs he has given up all year!

Ian Anderson did not pitch bad for the Braves. He got off to a shaky start – giving up one run in the top of the first – but after that he was pretty much able to dial it in. He pitched seven innings, gave up a total of two runs, allowed three hits, two walks, and had two strikeouts.

After the Mets got the lead 1-0 in the top of the first inning, the Braves came right back in the bottom of the first. Ehire Adrianza led off the game with a triple. Freddie Freeman struck out, and then my Ozzie had an RBI single that scored Adrianza and tied the game 1-1. Austin Riley followed Ozzie’s RBI single with a line drive, two-run home run to give Atlanta the lead at 3-1. The Braves were able to score three runs off of Jacob deGrom in the first inning…that is highly impressive!

In the top of the seventh inning, Dominic Smith hit a solo homer off of Ian Anderson to make it a 3-2 game. The Braves were still on top. However, in the top of the ninth inning, Brian Snitker brought Braves closer Will Smith on to pitch. He had ONE job…to preserve a Braves win. He did not do that. He gave up another solo home run to Dominic Smith to tie the game at three. He not only blew the save, but took a well-earned win away from Ian Anderson, AND a rare loss from Jacob deGrom. The Braves now had to come up with an offensive spark.

To lead off the bottom of the ninth inning, Heredia had a single for the Braves. He was followed by two quick outs. One was a groundout by Sandoval (his groundout advanced Heredia to third), and the other was a strikeout by Kevin Smith. Ronald Acuña Jr. was intentionally walked by the Mets, and then Ender Inciarte reached base on a walk. The Braves had bases loaded with two out. Freddie Freeman was up to bat. He was 0-for-4 in this game…he struck out in all four at-bats. But that strikeout, hitless streak didn’t continue. On the very first pitch he saw, he had an infield single that scored Heredia and allowed the Braves to win 4-3!!

This was a HUGE series win for Atlanta – they showed that they can take on the best and come out on top!

Braves vs. Red Sox Series Wrap

This is certainly not how anyone expected this series to turn out. The Braves were swept by the Red Sox in a two game series… they lost both games with the same final score. And what’s even crazier is that both of the final runs scored for Atlanta were in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Game One: Tucker Davidson vs. Eduardo Rodriguez, Braves lost 10-8

Tucker Davidson did not have a great start to this game, and in the 2.1 innings he pitched he gave up five hits, five runs and one walk. He did have four strikeouts. Sometime after Davidson was taken out of the game, the Braves staff released information concerning him: Tucker Davidson was headed to the Injured List with a left forearm strain. I’m in no way making excuses for his underwhelming outing, but if I was a left handed pitcher with a hurt throwing arm… I don’t think I’d do very well.

With those five runs allowed in just the first two innings, the Braves had a long way to go to try and come back. The Braves scored one in the bottom of the third on an RBI single by Freddie Freeman to get the Braves on the board. They added onto their scoring in the bottom of the fourth inning: they scored one on an RBI double by Abraham Almonte that scored Dansby Swanson. Then they scored two more on a two-RBI double by Ronald Acuña Jr, which scored Almonte and Ehire Adrianza, making it a 5-4 game.

However, Boston came right back and scored two more in the top of the fifth inning give them an extended lead of 7-4.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Braves had an offense spark that took advantage of miscues by the Red Sox defense. The Sox committed three errors in this game… all three came in the sixth inning. Boston failed to complete a fielders choice which allowed to Braves baserunners to be on the base pads, with no one out. Following that error, Guillermo Heredia had an RBI single to make it a 7-5 game. He advanced to second on another throwing error by the Rex Sox. Once again the Braves scored another unearned run on a passed ball, to make it a 7-6 game. To add on to the Red Sox embarrassing defense of the inning, Freddie Freeman had a sac fly to tie the game at 7 apiece.

After all the work the Braves did, taking advantage of the Red Sox defense to tie the game, Atlanta’s bullpen blew it late. In the top of the eighth inning, Chris Martin gave up a three run home run to Alex Verdugo to give Boston the lead again at 10-7.

The Braved tried to make a comeback in the bottom of the ninth. They scored one in the bottom of the ninth on an RBI single by Austin Riley to make it 10-8, but Atlanta’s offense couldn’t give anything else, which lead to a Red Sox win.

Game Two: Ian Anderson vs. Garrett Richards, Braves lost 10-8… I was at this game!!

This game was a rollercoaster, to say the least. Scoring, for both teams, was all over the place and you never knew what was going to happen at any given moment… no lead felt safe enough.

Ian Anderson pitched okay for the Braves. Despite his early inning struggles, he was able to keep the game under control. He only went four inning, gave up seven hits, four runs, only one walk, and he struck out a total of five Red Sox. Another thing that was promising about this start for him was that he did not give up a single home run. He kept the ball on the ground, not in the air.

The Red Sox scored two in the bottom of the first inning on an RBI double by Hunter Renfroe. In the bottom of the third inning, the Braves got one of those runs back on a sac fly by Abraham Almonte, which scored Freddie Freeman and made it a 2-1 game, with Boston on top.

Immediately after the Braves got one run on the board, Boston came right back and scored two in the top of the fourth going them a 4-1 lead. However, being the rollercoaster game it was, in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Braves came ever closer to the Red Sox.

Atlanta started the bottom of that inning with a triple by Dansby Swanson. (That was very exciting to watch in person!) His triple was followed by a strikeout of Braves catcher Kevan Smith. With one out, Guillermo Heredia was up to bat. After working a 2-2 count, he was plunked by a pitch and took first base. Brian Snitker put Ender Inciarte into the game as a pinch hitter for Anderson. He grounded out, but his groundout allowed Swanson to score and advanced Heredia to second base, making it 4-2. Boston’s pitcher had already hit one Braves batter in this inning, and then he also hit Ronald Acuña Jr. Acuña wasn’t very happy about being hit… understandable. However, he didn’t seek a fight and slowly took first base. Freeman scored the final Braves run of this inning with an RBI single that scored Heredia, and put the Braves right back in this game with a score of 4-3.

The Red Sox scored two more runs in the top of the sixth inning, making it a 6-3 game.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, things started to look real good for the Braves. Abraham Almonte had a double to start the game. Austin Riley followed him, reaching base on a fielding error by Red Sox shortstop. Then, Dansby Swanson was up to bat with two men on and NO ONE out. After working a 2-2 count he crushed the baseball into the left field seats for a game-tying three run dinger. Now that was fun to witness in person! The score is now 6-6. Freddie Freeman wasn’t satisfied with a tied score… so he took matters into his own hands. In the bottom of the sixth inning, he hit an opposite field, solo home run to make it a 7-6 game, Braves on top.

Alright, here is where things got frustrating. Braves now had the lead, a tight lead at that. Shane Greene comes on to pitch the seventh inning for Atlanta. He gives up a lead off double, followed by a walk and a strikeout. There’s one out and two men on, he gives up another walk to load the bases, and then gets another strikeout to make the second out. Boston’s coaching staff decided to bring on a left-handed pinch-hitter on to face righty pitcher Shane Greene with the bases loaded. So, Braves manager, Brian Snitker, decides to go deeper into his unstable bullpen. He brings on lefty A.J. Minter. Since Snitker brought on a left-handed pitcher, Boston decided to change their pinch-hitter to a right-handed one. After all those changes the game resumed. All Minter had to do was get one out. After getting Christian Arroyo (the pinch-hitter) to a 1-2 count, Minter hung a breaking ball down and over the plate. Arroyo was all over that pitch and hit out of the ballpark for a grand slam. Game score was now 10-7.

The Braves got, once again, one run closer in the bottom of the ninth inning. But after some really bad base running by Acuña to make the second out of the inning, Freeman struck out to end the game.

We all know it… the Braves bullpen this year isn’t that good. Luke Jackson is our only reliable pitcher. Will Smith is getting better, Tyler Matzek has his moments, as does Chris Martin, but other than that the bullpen isn’t great — and they definitely aren’t consistent. I don’t mean to sound rude in any way, but I think A.J. Minter is our worst bullpen pitcher so far this season. He has done things like he did in this game all throughout the season. His one job is to come and get one out, but instead he gives up multiple runs to the other team.

While I’m critiquing the bullpen… I have to include Braves manager Brian Snitker into this as well. Yes, I know, he is not a bullpen pitcher, but he is manager over the whole Braves team. That includes the bullpen. I get what he was trying to do, taking Greene out so it could be a lefty on lefty matchup, but he should have known that the Red Sox coaching staff would have enough common sense to swap pinch-hitters… and that’s exactly what they did!

Both Atlanta’s bullpen pitchers and who’s in control over the bullpen have some things to work out. They need to do it soon, otherwise it’s going to be an even harder season for our Atlanta Braves.

Braves vs. Pirates Series Wrap

What a series! The Braves may not have swept the Pirates, but they definitely broke out offensively and were able to score multiple runs an inning, all through the lineup. Starting pitching also continued to go well for the Braves, and in the last three games of the series, the bullpen was much better than we’ve seen.

Game One: Drew Smyly vs. Wil Crowe, Braves lost 6-4

Drew Smyly’s start for the Braves started out looking like it was going to be a rough one, but he turned that around and pitched a good quality six innings for the Braves. He allowed six hits, three runs, only one walk, and he had seven strikeouts. Although the three runs he gave up were all via home run, it was nice to see Smyly be able to hold the score for the Pirates at 3 and give his team a chance to come back.

The Braves tried hard for the comeback! In the bottom of the second inning, William Contreras hit a three run homer to left field, giving the Braves the lead at 3-2. Then, in the bottom of the sixth inning, (after the Pitsburg Pirates scored their third run) Dansby Swanson hit a two run bomb to left field, making it 4-3 Braves.

Sean Newcomb started the seventh inning for the Braves. He got two outs in his appearance, but he also surrendered the lead and made it a tied ballgame. The game remained tied and went into extra innings.

Jacob Webb came on to pitch the top of the tenth inning. This was his first appearance on the mound for the Atlanta Braves since he hit Mets’ player Kevin Pillar in the face on May 17. You could tell that Webb was still uncomfortable on the mound, and he did not pitch inside to the Pirates players at all. He left everything over the plate and the Pirates didn’t miss a pitch. Webb gave up a lead off single and then an RBI single to Kevin Newman to make it 5-4 Pirates on top. He then got a forceout that advanced Newman to third, and then Grant Dayton came on in relief of Webb. He gave up a sac fly to make it 6-4 Pirates.

The Braves had no luck in the bottom of the ninth inning to make a comeback.

Game Two: Ian Anderson vs. Tyler Anderson, Braves won 20-1

Hehe. This was certainly a super fun game to watch. I mean, it’s not every day the Braves score 20 runs in a game, right?! The Braves scored early in this game, and didn’t stop scoring until it was over.

Ian Anderson did a fantastic job pitching for the Braves in this game. He went six innings, allowed six hits, gave up zero runs, and ZERO walks. Not to mention he also had six strikeouts. It was nice to see Anderson be able to have command over his ball-to-strike ratio and not give up any walks. That is a huge component to have from your starting pitcher. Free baserunners pretty much always come around and score, and those hurt your team the worst. But Anderson didn’t not pitch himself into any trouble and had a great outing.

In the bottom of the first inning, Ozzie Albies had an RBI double, his thirteenth of the season, which scored Ronald Acuña Jr. and gave the Braves a 1-0 lead. After my man Ozzie got the scoring started, the Braves they were on fire offensively!

In the bottom of the second inning, Dansby Swanson led off with a double, followed by a walk to Kevan Smith, who was making his Atlanta Braves’ debut as catcher. That walk was followed by a single to Guillermo Heredia to load the bases. After Ian Anderson struck out, Ronald Acuña Jr was in the batter’s box for the Braves. After working a full count, Acuña got a pitch off the plate and drove it into the seats of the Chop House for a grand slam. The Braves extended their lead to 5-0. Acuña once again added onto the scoring in the bottom of the fourth inning with a sac fly that scored Guillermo Heredia making it 6-0, all Braves.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Ozuna led off with a four pitch walk. Ozzie Albies was up to bat, and after working a 2-1 count, Ozzie hit a home run to left center field making it 8-0 Braves. Yay! After Ozzie had gotten his Panda hug in the dugout, Austin Riley sent a bomb out of the ballpark for a solo home run making it 9-0. That was just the second time the Atlanta Braves had gone back-to-back with home runs all season.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Braves hit yet another home run. This one was by Marcell Ozuna. He hit it to left field and extended the lead to 10-0, all Braves. The very next inning, the Braves once again added on. Austin Riley hit another home run and then following his homer, Dansby Swanson hit one out of the park. That made it 12-0 Braves and the third time the Braves had hit back-to-back homers this season… the second of that night!

As if the Braves hadn’t scored enough… they added on big time to their already huge lead in the bottom of the eighth. Freddie Freeman led the inning off with a walk. Ozuna followed his walk with a double, and then Ozzie had a walk. The bases were loaded with no one out. Riley had a sac fly to score Freeman and make it 13-0. Swanson came up to bat and he had a walk. Then the Braves catcher Kevan Smith, had an RBI single that score Ozuna, making it 14-0. The Braves still had the bases loaded. Heredia was up to bat next and he had another RBI single making it 15-0 Braves. The Braves played their other baserunner station to station, so they still had the bases loaded with one out.

Ehire Adrianza came on to pinch-hit for Josh Tomlin, who pitched two scoreless innings for the Braves in relief of Anderson. On the FIRST PITCH he saw Adrianza hit a GRAND SLAM into the Chop House making it 19-0 Braves. Following the grand slam, Acuña struck out then Freeman had a double and Ozuna scored him with another double making it 20-0 Braves. Wow!

It would’ve been amazing for the Braves to have shut out the Pirates 20-0. Jacob Webb pitched the ninth inning for the Braves. He was still looking for a bounce-back start after hitting Kevin Pillar of the Mets in the face on May 17. He got the first guy out with no problem, but then Webb allowed a walk to Erik Gonzalez. It was the only walk a Braves pitcher gave to the Pirates in the entire game. It would’ve been so great to see the Braves pitching staff go an entire game without giving up a walk, but that wasn’t meant to be. After the walk, Webb gave up a single to Ben Gamel. Gonzalez advanced to third base on a throwing error by Webb. He then got a strikeout of Cole Tucker, and then gave up a RBI single to Will Craig making the score 20-1. Webb got the final out of the inning without giving up anymore runs. The one run that the Pirates score was the walk that Jacob Webb gave up… walks always come back to haunt a pitcher.

Following that bullpen appearance, Jacob Webb was sent down to Triple-A Gwinnett. I think that was a smart move for the Braves to make, and I personally thing that the Atlanta Braves coaching staff should have made that move a long time ago.

Game Three: Bryse Wilson vs. Mitch Keller, Braves won 6-1

Most of the time after a team has a blow out game, they don’t always score a lot of runs or win the next game. The Braves however took the momentum of the night before and carried it into this game.

Bryse Wilson pitched very well for the Braves. He went 6.2 innings allowing only five hits, one run, two walks, and he struck out four Pittsburgh batters. Wilson never really struggled in this outing. He had a few baserunners scattered here and there and gave up a solo home run to Michael Perez in the top of the third, but that was it.

The Braves started the scoring early. In the Bottom of the first inning, Ronald Acuña Jr. led the game off with a first pitch solo home run giving the Braves a 1-0 lead. It’s impressive to see Acuña be able to hit a homer on the first pitch, especially with how far he can hit them! The Braves added onto their lead in the bottom of the first on an RBI single by Austin Riley that scored Freddie Freeman and made it 2-0 Braves. In the bottom of the third inning, Freeman had an RBI single that scored Ender Inciarte, making it 3-0 Braves still on top.

Braves were up 3-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning. Freeman led off the inning with a four-pitch walk. Marcell Ozuna followed him with a flyout, and that brought Ozzie Albies up to the plate. (He was hitting from the left side.) On the first pitch he saw, he hit a BOMB into the seats in right center field for a two-run homer making it 5-1 Braves. And then, as if one home run wasn’t enough, Ozzie hit a solo home run in the bottom of the seventh inning from the right side of the plate, making it 6-1 Braves.

Ozzie may be little, but he has gigantic power! He really showed that with those two home runs. He definitely powered the Braves, along with good pitching, into another Braves win against the Pirates.

Game Four: Max Fried vs. JT Brubaker, Braves won 7-1

Max Fried got off to a shaky start for the Braves but settled down and pitched a great game. He went seven innings allowing only four hits, one run, three walks, and had two strikeouts.

The one run that Fried gave up was on an RBI double by Bryan Reynolds. That gave them a 1-0 lead, but Max was able to stop the Pirates there and give his Braves a chance to score.

The Atlanta Braves offense did just that. Acuña grounded out, and Freeman struck out to start off the inning. The Braves now had two outs, Ozuna had a single to keep the Braves alive in the inning. Ozzie followed Ozuna with an in-field single. Austin Riley came up to bat and he turned the game around for Atlanta with a three run home run. Whew! This kid’s got some home run power.

Austin Riley added onto the Braves lead in the bottom of the third with another home run! This one was a two-run shot, making it 5-1 Braves. The Braves scored one more time in the bottom of the sixth inning on a two-run home run by Dansby Swanson, making it 7-1 Braves. That was the final score of the game.

One fun fact about all three home runs in game four of the series was that Ozzie was on base for all of them! He had a single in the first, was hit by a pitch in the third, and had another single in the bottom of the sixth. Albies really started to come to life in this series, and I’m sure it has made him and the coaching staff happy. It’s made me happy for sure!