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.

MY TAKEAWAYS:

  • IMPROVEMENT IN THE ROTATION AND BULLPEN

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.

  • CONSISTENCY IN THE LINEUP

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.

GO BRAVES!

The Atlanta Braves Clinch the NL East For the FOURTH Year in a Row!!

Wow! What a series this was, and what a season this has been for our Atlanta Braves. So many things led up to this fourth annual Division Title. And I feel this was the most rewarding of them all.

When the Braves lost Ronald Acuña Jr. on July 11 with a torn ACL, so many people gave up hope on Atlanta saying, “How can we win without Acuña?”. Let me tell you…my faith in what these Atlanta Braves can do did not waver one bit. If anything, I felt that since so many people gave up on the Braves, that they would be even better and knock everyone’s socks off with how good they could be. Atlanta definitely proved every single one of those doubters wrong! 🙂

When you think about how the Braves got to this clinch there are so many things that come to mind. But I firmly believe the most significant of those is all the trade deadline deals made by Alex Anthpoulos, the Atlanta Braves general manager. He went out and got Joc Pederson, Adam Duvall, Jorge Soler, Richard Rodriguez, Stephen Vogt, and Eddie Rosario. Joc Pederson came earlier in the season, but he has still played a big part in this comeback season for Atlanta.

After the deadline and the new players started playing for the Braves, it was like things just started to click. In August, Atlanta won nine games in a row and didn’t look back. In those nine games, the Braves went from being in fourth place in the NL East standings, to being in first place. That is HUGE!

Once the Braves got to first place, it still wasn’t easy. The Mets had gone on a losing streak, but the Philadelphia Phillies had gotten hot fast and were in second place in the division and kept the race interesting. I think it made their clinch even better for it to be against the Phillies – their biggest rivals. For the Atlanta Braves to have gone through everything that they went through, to fight their way back into the division race and maintain first place, this was a very memorable game and season for the Braves.

I can’t wait to see what the Postseason has in store for them!!

Braves vs. Nationals Series Wrap

Woohoo another sweep! The Atlanta Braves are on a roll. It has been so great to see the Braves finally get into a consistent wining groove…and get rewarded for it.

Game One: Charlie Morton vs. Josiah Gray, Braves won 4-2

After a three plus hour rain delay, this game was finally underway.

Charlie Morton pitched for Atlanta. His first inning got off to a very shaky start, but he was able to get himself under control and pitch a great game. He pitched six innings, allowed six hits, two runs, two walks, and he had seven strikeouts. After his first two pitches in the bottom of the first inning, it didn’t look like Charlie Morton was going to have a strong outing. However, he turned things around and was able to limit the damage to only two runs.

Washington scored their only two runs of the game in the bottom of the first inning. On the first pitch of the inning, Victor Robles, the Nats’ center fielder, led off with a double. Juan Soto scored him with a single, and then Josh Bell had a sac fly that scored another run to make it a 2-0 game, Nationals on top.

All of the Braves runs came on solo home runs. ALL of them! In the top of the fifth inning, Travis d’Arnaud hit the first solo shot. It was a line-drive laser, and his first home run since his return from the injured list. His homer made it a 2-1 game.

The second solo home run came in the top of the sixth inning. It was an absolute BOMB hit off the bat of my man, Ozzie Albies. His homer went a long way, and it tied the game up at two apiece.

In the top of the seventh inning, Austin Riley hit yet another solo home run for Atlanta. It went a long way too, and it broke the 2-2 tie, making it a 3-2 game Braves on top.

And, then, to score the fourth and final run for the Braves, Dansby Swanson hit a solo home run in the top of the ninth inning. That made a final score of 4-2, and the Braves took game one.

Game Two: Max Fried vs. Patrick Corbin, Braves won 12-2

Max Fried pitched a great game for Atlanta. Not to mention he contributed at the plate too! He went six innings, allowed five hits, two runs, ZERO walks, and he had seven strikeouts. He gave up one run in the fourth, and one in the sixth, but other than those two runs, he was lights out.

The top of the third inning is where the Braves started their scoring. Guillermo Heredia led off the inning with a strikeout, and then Max Fried reached base on a single. Ozzie Albies hit a booming triple to center field. His triple scored Max Fried from first base! Jorge Soler struck out to make the second out, and then Freeman scored Ozzie with an RBI single, making it 2-0 Braves.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, Josh Bell had an RBI single that scored Victor Robles who singled to lead off that inning.

Atlanta added onto their lead in the top of the fifth inning. Guillermo Heredia led off with a single, and Max Fried advanced him to second on a sac bunt. With one out, my man Ozzie Albies hit a gigantic two-run home run! His two-run shot made it a 4-1 game, Braves on top. Soler followed Ozzie’s homer with a walk and Freddie followed him with a single. Dansby Swanson hit a two-RBI single to score Freeman and Soler, making it a 6-1 game.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Washington scored their second and final run, making the sore 6-2 Atlanta still on top.

The Braves, once again, added onto their lead. They scored three in the top of the seventh. Dansby Swanson hit a three-run homer…it went way out there! And they also scored another run in the top of the eighth inning when Soler grounded into a double play, but scored Joc Pederson while doing it. That made it a 10-2 game.

To score the final two runs of the game for the Atlanta Braves, Dansby Swanson and Adam Duvall both hit solo home runs in the top of the ninth inning. They were back-to-back bombs, and it was Dansby’s second home run of the night!

Game Three: Drew Smyly vs. Paolo Espino, Braves won 6-5

Woah. This was a suspenseful game! The Braves had a lead from the get-go, but the Nationals were relentless until the end. (I *love* these kinds of games…my mom does not!)

Drew Smyly didn’t have his strongest outing for the Braves. He only went four innings. And in those four inning, he allowed six hits, three runs, only one walk, and four strikeouts. Smyly threw 74 pitches across those four innings, and a lot of those were high-stress pitches.

Luckily, Atlanta started the scoring first. In the top of the second inning Stephen Vogt had an RBI groundout that scored Adam Duvall and made it a 1-0 game. In the top of the third inning, Dansby Swanson extended the Braves lead with a two-run home run. His homer made it a 3-0 game.

The Nats got on the board in the bottom of the third inning. Victor Robles had an RBI single that scored Luis Garcia, another runner scored on a wild pitch, and Juan Soto had a sac fly to make it a 3-3 tie game.

To break the 3-3 tie, Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley hit back-to-back solo home runs. Those two solo shots made it a 5-3 game. They also scored another run on a wild pitch, making it a 6-3 game, Atlanta on top.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Carter Kieboom for the Nationals hit a two-RBI single that scored Soto and Bell making it a 6-5 game.

Even though it was a close game, the Braves bullpen was able to preserve the lead and allow the Braves to sweep the Washington Nationals. Finally, our bullpen is doing its job. Keep it up, guys!

This series was huge for Atlanta. Not only did they keep their winning streak alive and keep the above 50/50, they also gained solo possession of first place in the National League East. Woohoo! I knew they could do it!!!

Braves vs. Reds Series Wrap

Another series win for the Atlanta Braves! It seems like things are finally -FINALLY – starting to click for the Braves. Not only do they have a wining record, but they are playing better baseball and are winning multiple games in a row.

Game One: Drew Smyly vs. Sonny Gray, Braves won 3-2

Drew Smyly pitched very well for the Braves. He went six innings, allowed only two hits, two runs, two walks, and he had seven strikeouts. Smyly never really got into any trouble. After he gave up a two-run home run in the top of the second inning, he was lights out. He had good command of the strike zone, didn’t have many full counts, and had control over his pitches.

To get the Cincinnati Reds on the board, Aristides Aquino, the Reds young outfielder, hit a two run home run in the second inning.

In the bottom of the fourth inning after two quick outs from Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley, Dansby Swanson reared base on a walk. With two out and one on, Adam Duvall was up to bat. On the very first pitch he saw…Duvall hit it out of the ballpark for a two-run homer and made it a tied game 2-2.

Atlanta scored their third and final run in the bottom of the sixth inning. Austin Riley led off that inning with a first-pitch single, Dansby Swanson followed Riley with a walk. To make the first out of the inning, Adam Duvall had a strikeout. So with one out, Joc Pederson walked to load the bases. Stephen Vogt drew a bases loaded walk to make it a 3-2 game.

The Braves’ bullpen was able to hold onto a tight lead late, and that led Atlanta to a game one victory.

Game Two: Touki Toussaint vs. Wade Miley, Braves won 8-6

Whew. What a game! It was an especially great game for Ozzie Albies. 🙂 and it was GREAT to see Braves catcher, Travis d’Arnaud back on the field. He was certainly missed!

Touki Toussaint pitched five innings. He allowed four hits, two runs, three walks, and he had five strikeouts. Toussaint didn’t have a bad outing. He just ran into some trouble a couple times. Luckily, he didn’t surrender more than two runs. Touki could’ve possibly pitched later into the game, but his high pitch-count of 97 is what ultimately drove him out of the game.

Bottom of the first inning. Ozzie Albies led off the inning with a single. Jorge Soler walked-in the next at-bat. After Freeman flew out on the first pitch he saw, Austin Riley was up to bat. Austin hit a booming RBI double into center field. Ozzie easily scored from second base. Soler tried to score, but he was thrown out to make the second out of the inning. But the Braves still got on the board making it a 1-0 game.

Bottom of the second inning. Adam Duvall leads of the inning with a walk. Travis d’Arnaud lined out to make the first out of the inning. It was SO good to see Travis back on the field! He missed 86 games with a torn ligament in his left thumb. With one out, Guillermo Heredia was up to bat. He hit a two-run dinger into the seats in left center field. His home run extended Atlanta’s lead, 3-0.

Bottom of the third inning. Freddie Freeman led off the inning with a single. Austin Riley hit another double that scored Freeman. Freddie was originally called out at home plate, but after review, it was overturned and Freeman was safe! That made it 4-0 Braves. Austin scored on a sac fly by Swanson to make it a 5-0 Atlanta lead.

In the top of the sixth inning, Cincinnati got on the board. Joey Votto hit a two-run shot making it a 5-2 game. In the top of the eighth inning, Eugenio Suarez hit an RBI double making it a 5-3 game.

Top of the ninth inning: Atlanta needs three outs to win the game. Will Smith is on the mound and things don’t look good. He got the first out of the inning, but then hit Nick Castellanos with a pitch. On the very next pitch he threw, Will Smith surrendered a two-run home run to Joey Votto – his second of the game. That tied the game at 5-5. Smith got out of the inning without surrendering anymore runs, but not before blowing the game.

The Braves didn’t score in the bottom of the ninth inning, and neither team scored in the tenth inning.

Top of the eleventh inning: **remember the new extra-innings rule automatically places a runner on second base for each team** Edgar Santana is pitching for Atlanta. The first batter he faced was Kyle Farmer. He gave up an RBI single that scored the runner from second base and made it a 6-5 game, Cincinnati on top. Santana was able to get out of the inning without giving up any more runs.

Bottom of the eleventh inning: Adam Duvall is the runner placed on second for the Braves. d’Arnaud and Heredia made the first two outs of the inning, and then Joc Pederson walked to keep the game alive. It was all up to Ozzie Albies. With two outs, Ozzie worked a 2-1 count. On the fourth pitch of his AB, he crushed an absolute BOMB into the Chop House seats for a WALK-OFF three-run home run!!!

It was amazing. Not only did Ozzie walk it off for Atlanta…but my man started and ended the game with a hit.

Game Three: Kyle Muller vs. Vladimir Gutierrez, Braves lost 12-3

I think it’s safe to say that this game didn’t go how anyone in Braves country thought it would. Kyle Muller had been producing such solid starts for Atlanta. But this was not one of those.

Over just 2.1 innings, Muller allowed five hits, six runs, three walks, and he only had one strikeout. It’s clear to say he did not have his best stuff. His pitches were all over the place, and he didn’t have good command. He kept getting himself into trouble and couldn’t get out of it.

Despite their blow-out loss, Atlanta scored the first run of the game. It came in the bottom of the first on a Dansby Swanson RBI-single that scored Jorge Soler who reached base on a walk earlier in the inning. Swanson’s RBI single made it a 1-0 game Braves on top.

That lead did not last long. In the top of the second inning, Reds left fielder, Jesse Winker hit a grand slam to make it a 4-1 game. They scored FIVE more runs in the top of the third inning making it a 9-1 game. Cincinnati made it an 11-1 game in the top of the sixth when Kyle Farmer hit a two run homer.

In the bottom of the seventh inning; my man- Ozzie Albies hit a solo home run. It went a long way, and even though the Braves were still down nine, it gave the fans and the team something to celebrate. His homer made it an 11-2 game.

The Reds scored their twelfth and final run in the top of the ninth inning. It came from Tyler Stephenson against Edgar Santana, and it was the first pitch thrown that inning. That made it a 12-2 game.

In the bottom of the ninth inning Joc Pederson scored on a wild pitch to make it a 12-3 game.

This was a good series for Atlanta- they have started rolling and winning consecutive games in a row. This is leading them in the right direction, and if they can keep this up they will have a great chance of making the postseason!

Braves vs. Nationals Sereis Wrap

This was another good series for our Atlanta Braves. They won two out of three games against the Washington Nationals. They should have won all three games and swept the Nats, but a blown save by Will Smith in game two of the series didn’t allow that to happen. Other than Smith’s slip-up, the Braves played great baseball throughout this entire series.

Game One: Kyle Muller vs. Erick Fedde, Braves won 8-4

Kyle Muller didn’t have his strongest outing for Atlanta. He only pitched 4.2 innings, and over that stretch of innings he allowed two hits, three runs, two walks, and he had three strikeouts.

Even though Atlanta didn’t get a strong outing from Muller, they still produced a lot of offense and ultimately won the ballgame.

In bottom of the first inning, the Braves started the scoring. Adam Duvall had a two-RBI single that scored Jorge Soler and Freddie Freeman, who both reached base via a single. That gave them a 2-0 lead early.

The Nationals scored one run in the top of the third inning on a wild pitch to make it a 2-1 game, and then they tied the game at two on an RBI-single by their third baseman Carter Kieboom. And then, to give Washington a 3-2 lead, the pitcher Erick Fedde had a sac fly that scored Gerardo Para from third base.

Atlanta regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth inning. To make the first two outs of the inning, Abraham Almonte grounded out and Ozzie Albies had a lineout. To keep the inning alive, Soler reached base on catcher’s interference. Freeman followed him with a first pitch single. With two on and two out, Austin Riley was up to bat. He hit an RBI-single that scored Soler and made it a 3-3 game. Dansby Swanson broke the 3-3 tie with another RBI single that scored Freddie and made the score 4-3 Atlanta. Adam Duvall added the final knock of the inning with an RBI-double that scored Riley, making it 5-3.

In the bottom of the eighth inning Stephen Vogt led off with a walk. Ehire Adrianza followed him with a single, and then my man, Ozzie Albies, walked to load the bases. Jorge Soler struck out to make out number one. And then Freddie Freeman hit a two-RBI single that extended Atlanta’s lead to 7-3. Austin Riley made it an 8-3 game when he hit a sac fly that scored Ozzie From third.

Washington got one run closer in the top of the ninth inning on an RBI double by Luis Garcia to make it 8-4. But they couldn’t make anymore offense, and the Braves held on to take game one!

Game Two: Charlie Morton vs. Josiah Gray, Braves lost 3-2

It’s games like these that are the most frustrating. Your team has a lead the entire game until the top of the ninth inning. And then your “closer” comes on, and instead of preserving a shutout…he blows the game and your team loses. That is exactly what happened to Atlanta.

Charlie Morton produced another great outing for Atlanta. He went six innings, allowed three hits, ZERO runs, two walks, and he had seven strikeouts. Everything seemed to go right for Morton. He had good command over his pitches, the strike zone, and his pitch count. He did not throw many full-counts to batters.

Jorge Soler started the scoring in the bottom of the first inning. He hit a no-doubt, solo home run to make it a 1-0 game. Soler has some serious power…and he just keeps hitting!

The Braves extended their lead in the bottom of the third inning when Ozzie Albies hit an RBI-single that scored Stephen Vogt, who reached base on a wild-pitch strikeout. Ozzie’s run-scoring single made it a 2-0 game, all Atlanta.

Coming into the top of the ninth inning, the Atlanta Braves were still up 2-0. Will Smith came onto pitch the ninth inning and preserve a two-run shutout. He failed at that. Smith started the inning with a walk to Josh Bell. Then he gave up a first pitch double to Ryan Zimmerman. He got Kieboom to flyout to make the first out of the inning. But then Luis Garcia had an RBI-groundout to make it a 2-1 game. There were now two outs- but that didn’t really matter. On the very next pitch Will Smith threw, Riley Adams hit out of the ballpark for a two-run homer making it 3-2 Washington on top. Not only did that give the Nationals the lead, but it had to be embarrassing for Smith. After all, Adams only had an average of .086.

Atlanta couldn’t come up with any offense in the bottom of the ninth inning to try and come back from a blown save by Will Smith.

Game Three: Max Fried vs. Patrick Corbin, Braves won 5-4

Max Fried pitched well for Atlanta. He went six innings, allowed seven hits, only one run, one walk, and he had five strikeouts. Despite how many hits he allowed, Fried was able to stay calm in those high-stress innings and limit the damage to only one run.

The one run that Max Fried surrendered came in the top of the third inning. Alcides Escobar, the Nats’ shortstop, hit an RBI-single that scored Luis Garcia and made it a 1-0 game.

However, the Braves came right back and took the lead in the bottom of the third. After two quick outs, one by Joc Pederson and the other by Kevan Smith, Max Fried had a single. And then, my man Ozzie Albies hit a two-run bomb making it a 2-1 game, Atlanta on top!

The Braves added onto their lead again in the bottom of the sixth inning. Austin Riley had an RBI-double that scored Dansby Swanson making it 3-1. And then Adam Duvall came up clutch once again with a two-run homer that scored Austin and made it a 5-1 game. Duvey is such a welcomed-back addition to our lineup!

The Nationals made it a 5-3 game in the top of the seventh inning on two RBI-singles. One was by Victor Robles and the other by Ryan Zimmerman. They also scored another run in the top of the ninth inning. It came on an RBI-double by Ryan Zimmerman. That made it a 5-4 game.

Luckily, Atlanta was able to hold onto that 5-4 lead and win the series.

Atlanta is finally starting to get into a winning groove. Our team looks great, and they are finally working together. Yes, it took them a LONG time…but it was SO worth the wait!

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!!

Braves vs. Phillies Series Wrap

This series for the Atlanta Braves – against their division rivals, the Philadelphia Phillies – was the start of the most crucial road trip of the season. At the end of the road trip, Atlanta will have played nine games in eight days: four against the Phillies and five against the New York Mets. So all of those games are within the Braves’ division, and I believe this series will make or break the Braves. If they don’t win at least one of the series, they will continue to get further and further back in the standing and have a much harder time at trying win the NL East, let alone trying to make it into the postseason.

Game One: Charlie Morton vs. Matt Moore, Braves won 7-2

This game was a great way for the Atlanta Braves to start this crucial series! Everything seemed to fire right on all cylinders.

Charlie Morton pitched very well. He went six innings, allowed four hits, two runs, four walks, and he had eight strikeouts. His command was good, he never really got into any trouble, and, for the most part, he was able to have control of the strike zone. His solid start from the mound was a key part of Atlanta’s win.

To start off the scoring for the Braves, Freddie Freeman had an RBI single that scored my man, Ozzie Albies, who reached base on a double in the previous at-bat.

Atlanta added onto their lead in the third inning. To start the inning, Charlie Morton struck out, and Joc Pederson grounded out to first. So with two outs, Ozzie and Freddie both had first pitch singles to keep the inning alive. Austin Riley then walked to load the bases. With two outs and the bases loaded, Dansby Swanson was up to bat. On the second pitch he saw, Swanson hit a GRAND SLAM to make it a 4-0 game – all Atlanta! That grand slam was the FIRST of Dansby Swanson’s career, and it was a good one!

The Braves scored yet another run in the top of the fourth when Orlando Arcia hit a solo home run. He knew it was gone right off the bat, and it went a long way!

Philadelphia scored two in the bottom of the seventh but couldn’t add on anymore runs. And, to score their final run, Austin Riley had a bases loaded walk in the top of the ninth to score Pablo Sandoval who reached base on a walk to start the ninth inning.

Game Two: Max Fried vs. Zack Wheeler, Braves lost 5-1

Lack of offense pretty much wraps up why the Braves didn’t win this game. Their pitching was good, but they gave up too many runs that Atlanta’s offense couldn’t make up for. We’ve seen it so much this season: they win one game and lose the next one (or two), over and over again.

Max Fried gave the Braves a pretty solid outing. He went five innings, allowed six hits, four runs, four walks, and he had six strikeouts. Fried hung a couple pitches and made a few mistakes, which the Phillis’ bats were all over.

The Braves scored their one and only run in the top of the third inning when Freddie Freeman had an RBI single to score Ozzie Albies, who had reached base on a double in the previous at-bat. That made it a 1-1 game. (The Phillies scored in the bottom of the first on a solo home run by J.T. Realmuto.

The Philadelphia Phillies scored four more times throughout the rest of the game, to make the final score 5-1, Philadelphia.

The Braves had a hard time producing offense in this game, but it was nice to see their bullpen only allow one run over four innings of relief. Atlanta’s bullpen seems to be getting better slowly but surely, and it’s nice to see them not blow a game every outing.

Game Three: Drew Smyly vs. Vince Velasquez, Braves won 15-3

Well, if you can’t tell by the score, this was an all-around good win for the Atlanta Braves. Their starting and relief pitching was very good, offense was through the roof, and defensively they did well!

Drew Smyly only went four innings, he left the game due to pain in his left knee. In those four innings he allowed three hits, zero runs, three walks, and he had three strikeouts. It would’ve been nice to have seen Smyly get the win, but obviously his health comes first, which is ultimately why he was taken out.

The Braves started off their scoring in the top of the first inning, when Freddie Freeman hit a two run home run to give them an early 2-0 lead. Abraham Almonte added onto their lead in the top of the second when he hit a solo home run, making it 3-0 Atlanta.

In the top of the third inning, Atlanta once again added onto their lead. Ozzie Albies started the inning with a ground out, and then Freeman followed him with a single. His single was followed by a walk to red-hot Austin Riley. Dansby Swanson had an RBI double that allowed Freddie to score, and advanced Riley to third, making it 4-0. Almonte had another hit – this time it was a two-RBI single that scored both Riley and Swanson, extending Atlanta’s lead to 6-0.

The Braves once again added onto their lead in the top of the sixth inning, on an RBI single by Joc Pederson that scored Guillermo Heredia, making it 7-0.

Philadelphia scored one run in the bottom of the sixth inning on an RBI double by Rhys Hoskins to make it a 7-1 game, Braves still on top.

As if they hadn’t scored enough runs already, the Atlanta Braves decided to add on some more! To start off the eighth inning, Guillermo Heredia reached base on a fielding error. Pablo Sandoval struck out to make the first out. Joc Pederson followed his strikeout with a single, and then my man Ozzie Albies, hit a gigantic three-run bomb making it 10-1 Atlanta. After Ozzie’s monstrous homer, Freeman walked and then Austin Riley hit a two-run shot, making it 12-1 Braves. WOW!

Philly got two more in the bottom of the eighth inning on an RBI fielder’s choice and a sac fly, to make it 12-3.

And then, to add the final blow for Atlanta, Joc Pederson ended his fantastic night at the plate with a three-run home run, making the final score 15-3 Atlanta. Way to go, Braves!

Game Four: Touki Toussaint vs. Aaron Nola, Braves lost 2-1

Touki Toussaint pitched extremely well for the Braves. He went seven innings, allowed five hits, one run, ZERO walks, and he had ten strikeouts… TEN! Not to mention he pitched a career high in innings-pitched. One slip-up cost Touki the game… but even though he got the loss, he pitched very well and should be proud. It is so nice to have Touki back in the lineup!

That one run Toussaint allowed came in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jean Segura hit a solo home run to make it 1-0 Phillies. They added onto that lead four innings later. In the bottom of the eighth inning, their second baseman Ronald Torreyes hit a solo home run to make it 2-0 Philadelphia.

The Braves scored their one and only run in the top of the ninth inning. It came on a two out, two-strike home run from Austin Riley to get Atlanta on the board, making it 2-1.

Atlanta didn’t have much luck against Aaron Nola, but at least they were able to score one off of him. But, again, here is where we see the struggles of Atlanta. They go from winning a game 15-3, and the next game they can’t produce any offense. This is yet another area where the Braves need to step it up if they have any hopes of making it to the playoffs.

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. Marlins Series Wrap

For whatever reason the Braves always have a tendency to have a hard time when facing the Miami Marlins. The Marlins won the series, and the Braves barely avoided being swept.

Game One: Charlie Morton vs. Sandy Alcantara, Braves lost 4-3

The Braves started this game aggressively. In the top of the first inning, Ronald Acuña Jr. led off with a walk and then, following a review, he stole second base which got him into scoring position. Freeman advanced Acuña to third base on a ground out, and then my man Ozzie Albies had an RBI single to give the Braves a 1-0 lead.

Miami came right back in the bottom of the first and tied the game at one apiece on a sac fly by former Brave, Adam Duvall, which scored Starling Marte.

Ozzie and Acuña got it done for the Braves again in the top of the third. Acuña got on base with a double and then after Freeman flew out, Ozzie doubled Ronald home making it 2-1 Braves on top.

The fourth inning is where Charlie Morton got into some trouble. He started the inning with a one-pitch groundout of Duvall. After Morton got the first out, he walked Isan Diaz on four straight pitches and then hit the next batter. Free baserunners will more than likely always come back to haunt a pitcher, and sure enough, John Berti had an RBI single which tied the game at 2. After Morton got a strikeout of Alcantara for the second out, Marlins young stud, Jazz Chisholm Jr. had a two-RBI single that gave Miami the lead at 4-2.

The Braves came one run closer in the top of the seventh on an RBI double by Acuña Jr. that scored Ehire Adrianza to make it a 4-3 game, but the Braves couldn’t get anymore offense throughout the remainder of the game to tie or win.

Game Two: Max Fried vs. Zach Thompson, Braves lost 4-2

Out of all Max Fried’s stats, the one that surprises me the most is this: he has never won a game against the Miami Marlins. This season alone he has a 0-2 record against the Fish. In this game he went six innings, allowed five hits, three runs, two walks and he had four strikeouts. Overall Fried didn’t pitch terrible, he just didn’t have good execution of his pitches and left some over the plate which the Marlins took advantage of.

The Braves were scoreless until the top of the eighth inning. Adrianza struck out swinging to start the inning, Acuña followed him with a single, and then Freddie Freeman hit a two-run home run getting the Braves on the board and making it a 3-2 game.

However, the Marlins came right back and scored another run in the bottom of the eighth inning on an RBI single by Jesus Aguilar which scored Marte, extending Miami’s lead to 4-2, the final score of the game.

Game Three: Drew Smyly vs. Pablo López, Braves won 6-4

The Braves needed this win… and they got it!

Drew Smyly got the win for Atlanta. He went five innings, allowed six hits, two runs, one walk and he had six strikeouts. He got into a little but of trouble in the bottom of the fifth inning which accounts for the two runs he allowed, but other than that he pitched well.

The Braves started their scoring early. In the top of the first, Ronald Acuña Jr. started a game with a single, which was followed by a Freddie Freeman double. The Braves had runners on second and third with nobody out. Ozzie popped out, and then Abraham Almonte walked to load the bases with Braves. Austin Riley got the job done for Atlanta with a two-RBI double that gave the Braves an early lead of 2-0. The Braves scored another run in the first inning when Guillermo Heredia got hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. After he got hit, Almonte scored extending Atlanta’s lead to 3-0 after one.

Austin Riley scored another run for the Braves when he hit a solo home run in the top of the third inning to extend Atlanta’s lead to 4-0. In the top of the fifth inning, Kevan Smith had an RBI single that scored Riley and once again extended the Braves lead to 5-0.

The Marlins scored two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to make it a 5-2 game. However, the Braves came back and scored one more run in the top of the sixth inning on a solo home run by Ender Inciarte to right field. Making it a 6-2 game with Atlanta in the lead.

Miami scored two more runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to make it 6-4, but it ultimately wasn’t enough. That led to a Braves win!