After sweeping the Cincinnati Reds, the Atlanta Braves were themselves swept by the Miami Marlins in a 3-game series that lasted Tuesday-Thursday. In the first 2 games of the series Atlanta was crushed: They were shut-out 9-0 Tuesday and lost 9-3 on Wednesday. Last night’s game was much closer, though they still took the loss by a final score of 5-4.
Ervin Santana, who has been really good for Atlanta through the first month of the season, was okay last night in his start. In 6 innings pitched, he allowed only 5 hits but 3 runs; Santana walked 3 while picking up 5 strikeouts. He gets a no-decision.
Henderson Alvarez gave up 4 earned runs on 8 hits in the 6 innings he worked in his start for Miami. He walked 2, struck out 4, and also gets a no-decision.
The Marlins scored a run in both of the first 2 innings; Casey McGehee hit an RBI double in the 1st inning before Garrett Jones hit his 5th home run in the 2nd inning. Down 2-0 in the 3rd inning, B.J. Upton hit a 3-run home run to give Atlanta a 1-run lead; it was Upton’s 2nd homer of the year. The other run the Braves scored came off Evan Gattis’ 7th home run of the season. Atlanta held a 4-3 lead after 6 innings.
The Braves bullpen has been a problem all season, a trend that continued last night. Ian Thomas came in to relieve Santana in the 7th inning and promptly gave up the tying and go-ahead runs along with reliever Dan Carpenter; both pitcher’s gave up hits in the inning, 2 from Thomas and 1 from Carpenter. Thomas is charged with the 2 earned runs and the games loss. Carpenter is charged with his 1st blown save of the season. Miami’s Casey McGehee and Adeiny Hechavarria drove in the 7th inning runs. Steve Cishek saved the game, earning his 6th save of the year.
Tonight (Friday) at 7:35 EST the Braves begin a 3-game home series with the San Francisco Giants. Atlanta gets one of their starting pitcher’s, Mike Minor, back from injury tonight as he gets the start for the Braves. The Giants will send Tim Lincecum (1-1, 5.96 ERA) to the mound to make the start.
By Chris Castle