On Monday night the Braves lost 4-1 as Jo-Jo Reyes was out-performed by the Brewers starter Ben Sheets. Reyes went 2 1/3 innings giving up four runs on six hits, whereas Sheets held the Braves to one earned run on four hits in a complete game performance in which he struck out seven. The Braves lone run came in the Fourth when Brian McCann followed singles by Kelly Johnson and Mark Teixeira with a single of his own to score Johnson. Then on Tuesday night, the Braves lost 4-3 as the Braves were unable to get the job done with four errors on the night. Charlie Morton was on the mound and went six innings giving up four runs (2 earned) while striking out four and walking one. The two unearned runs came in a three-error First inning. Even Teixeira’s 2-run homer in the Ninth with two outs could not bring the Braves back and they are now 4-20 in one-run games. In the Fourth inning Yunel Escobar was caught too far off the bag and was called out by the first base umpire, and in reaction Escobar threw his helmet resulting in his ejection by the umpire. Cox decided not to argue the call on a day when his team had tested his boiling point and sent Escobar from the dugout to the clubhouse. Escobar missed last night’s game due to a strained shoulder but is expected back for the Bluejays series in Toronto starting Friday. Last night without Escobar, Chipper Jones, or Omar Infante the Braves managed to take one win from the Brewers with a 4-2 win. Starter Jorge Campillo went seven innings only allowing two runs on four with six strike outs and no walks. After allowing two doubles in the Second that both scored a run, Campillo retired twelve-straight batters. Kelly Johnson stepped up for the offense going 2 for 4 with three RBIs on the day. Johnson had a two-run double in the Third h then scored one more in the Fifth with a single. The Braves have tonight off before taking beginning the series against the Bluejays in Toronto on Friday with Jair Jurrjens (7-3) on the mound against Dustin McGowan (6-5).
After losing to the Mariners 10-2 on Friday night the Braves came back on Saturday to win 5-4 and on Sunday 8-3. In six innings on Saturday, Jair Jurrjens allowed three runs and gave up three hits while striking out four and walking two. Going into the Eighth inning Seattle still carried their 3-1 lead from the First, but they tacked on one more run and the Braves rallied for two to make the score 4-3 going into the Ninth. Reuben Gotay hit a homer in the Eighth and Chipper Jones hit a two-out, pinch-hit RBI single to give the Braves the added two runs. In the top of the Ninth, the Mariners were three up and three down and in the bottom of the Ninth, the Mariners’ saver Miguel Batista couldn’t get the job done. The first batter for the Braves was Kelly Johnson who was walked, then Greg Norton hit a double to the gap in center field to score Johnson. So with Norton on second, Mark Teixieira was intentionall walked followed by Jeff Francoeur who was hit by a pitch. With the bases loaded, Brian McCann came to the plate with no outs and hit a single to score the winning, walk-off run for the Braves. In a rarity this season, the Braves had a comeback win in the Ninth. Today the Braves won 8-3 with Tim Hudson leading the way in seven shut-out innings and having some help from the bat of Mark Teixeira who hit three home runs on the day. Every Braves player had a hit on the day and combined for 14 hits on the day. Teixeira was not alone in a home run though as Brian McCann also hit a home run in the Fourth in a back-to-back display with Teixeira. Hudson is now 8-5 for the season and picked up his first interleague victory since coming to Atlanta. Chipper Jones remains out of the lineup alongside Yunel Escobar, although both were still available to pinch-hit today. Jo-Jo Reyes (3-4) will start the Braves off tomorrow night at home in a three-game series against the Brewers who will start Ben Sheets (8-1).
In the first game of a three-game series, the Braves lost to the Mariner 10-2 after taking the lead 1-0 in the Fourth. Starter Jorge Camillo pitched 6 1/3 innings giving up four earned runs on eight hits. At the end of the Sixth the score was tied at one, but then the Mariners rallied for three in the Seventh, five in the Eighth and tacked one more on in the Ninth while the Braves managed just one more in the Eighth. Chipper Jones went o for 2 with a walk and is now batting .390 before leaving the game in the Eighth with a strained quad. The Braves pitching staff gave up fifteen hits on the night as the Braves had a season-rare loss at home. After firing their general manager, the Mariners interim manager Jim Riggleman was able to record his first win since 1999. Tonight in the second game of the series, Jair Jurrjens will take on Jarrod Washburn.
In a seven-inning no-decision outing, Jo-Jo Reyes gave up two runs leading the way for the Braves to win 5-2 after a three-run rally in the Ninth. Omar Infante gave up the Braves the leading run with an RBI single in the Ninth. Reyes threw 55 of 102 pitches for strikes and only gave up five hits on the night while walking four. Designated hitter for the night, Chipper Jones, hit a solo home run in the First inning with two out and hitting 2 for 5 on the night with an RBI and two strike outs to maintain a .400 batting average. Mike Gonzalez got the save for the Braves in a rare occassion where the Braves had a late-inning rally go in their favor. It was the first appearance by Gonzalez since his elbow surgery May 31, 2007. After losing 21 of 28 road games before heading on this road trip, the Braves had the chance to split the games 5-5, but were unable to close out the trip this afternoon with a win. The Braves lost 5-4 in the Ninth after tying the game with an RBI each by Infante and Jones before the Rangers got the winning run in the bottom of the inning. It was the 22nd straight one-run road loss for the Braves this season. Charlie Morton who had the start for the Braves allowed three earned runs on five hits while striking out three and walking four. At the plate Chipper Jones went 0-4 dropping his batting average to .394. After a disappointing final road trip game, the Braves now return home to Turner Field for a six-game stay to take on the Seattle Mariners and then the Milwaukee Brewers for a three-game series each. The Braves are now six games behind the Philadelphia Phillies in the chase for the NL East.
After Tim Hudson surrendered six runs on six hits in 4 1/3 innings, the Braves were unable to recover, and lost to the Rangers in Arlington 7-5. It was the first time ex-Ranger Mark Teixeira has had the opportunity to play his former team since coming to Atlanta, and he went 0 for 2 with a walk and a sacrifice fly. Two homers were hit by the Braves: Omar Infante hit a solo shot in the Sixth and Brian McCann hit a three-run homer in the Eighth. There was a controversial double play attempt in the Third that led to the Rangers going out five runs instead of just three. In the end the Braves lost 7-5 and now will look to bounce back with a win tonight in game two of the series with Jo-Jo Reyes (3-4) on the mound against the Rangers Eric Hurley who will be making his first career start in Texas.
Jair Jurrens pitched 7 2/3 scoreless inning and struck out seven in last night’s win over the Colorado Rockies. Jeff Francoeur and rookie ‘Richmond boy’ Brandon Jones each drove in two runs while Chipper Jones broke an 0-12 ‘slump’ driving in two runs on a single in the Fifth inning. The game had been scoreless up until Jones knocked in the two runs, which led the way for a three-run inning for Atlanta. Atlanta traveled to Coors Field in between road trips to LA and Arlington to make-up a snow-out game from April 10. Without the win, the Braves would have been swept by the Rockies. Tonight Tim Hudson (7-4) will be on the mound to take on Vicente Padilla (8-3) and the Rangers as the Braves are one game away from .500.
Jorge Campillo pitched a solid game allowing two runs on seven hits in eight innings, but it wasn’t enough for a win or a sweep as the LA Angels topped the Braves in the final game of the series yesterday 2-0. Angles first baseman, Casey Kotchman hit a two-run homer in the 5th to give LA the only runs they needed to clinch the win. Chipper Jones went 0 for 4 with one strikeout and is now batting .402. Yunel Escobar went 2 for 3 on the day with the most hits out of the offense. Tonight the Braves will take on the Rockies at Coors Field with Jair Jurrjens on the mound.
Charlie Morton won his first major league start yesterday against the LA Angels as he threw six solid innings leading the way for the Braves 9-4 victory. It was the second-straight win for the Braves in the LA series and the second time this season the Braves have won a road series. Morton was called up this week from Triple-A Richmond with teammate and left fielder Brandon Jones. Jones went 3 for 5 with an RBI and a solo home run in the Sixth, and following up his first multi-hit game on Friday with another multi-hit day on Saturday. Kelly Johnson also had a solo home run that he knocked out in the Sixth inning as well. The ‘Richmond Boys’ as Bobby Cox said endearingly of the two have provided a much needed spark for the Braves on the road and maybe just what is needed for the Braves to ressurect themselves on the road. Right hander Jorge Campillo (2-0) will get the start today against Joe Saunders (9-3) in the last game of the series before Atlanta takes on the Rockies on Monday night and heads to Texas on Tuesday.
The star hitter of the Braves this season Chipper Jones was out of tonight’s game after bruising his eye during batting practice. The Braves though were able to rally together and knock out a 5-2 win as the bottom of the order tallied 8 of 15 hits against the Angels. On the mound, Jo-Jo Reyes went eight innings giving up two runs on five hits including a home run while walking two and striking out five. Center fielder Gregor Blanco had three hits and three RBIs for the Braves and led the way for the 5-2 road victory. After breaking a season-worst six-game losing streak and winning just the fourth time this season in 21 road games, the Braves will look to win the second game of the LA road series tomorrow night with Charlie Morton likely to have the start against Ervin Santana. Morton is coming up from the Minor League and making his debut against Santana who is 8-2 for the season.
As the bullpen faltered after a solid start by Tim Hudson who allowed only one run in 6 2/3 innings, the Braves lost game three of the road series against the Cubs 3-2. In the Ninth inning, Blaine Boyer surrendered the tying run before Jeff Ridgway came into the game only to hit the batter and forced the winning run in the Eleventh. Jeff Francoeur was responsible for the Braves’ only runs of the game hitting a two-run shot in the Second, his eighth of the season. The Braves continue to struggle on the road and now must face the LA Angels in LA as well.
Jeff Bennett took the start for an injured Jair Jurrjens and in the first two innings he allowed seven runs on seven hits before finally being pulled when the first four batters reached base in the Third. Follwing Bennett, the Braves’ bullpen of Phil Stockman, Jeff Ridgway, Royce Ring, and Blaine Boyer held the Cubs scoreless for the remainder of the game. However, the damage was done and Atlanta would not recover. The two runs for the Braves came on a pinch hit by Corky Miller in the Seventh when he hit two-run home run. The starter for the Cubs Ryan Dempster held the Braves to the two runs and pitched a complete game at Wrigley Field. Dempster struck out eleven and gave up only four hits in his outing. The Braves continued to have trouble winning on the road.
In three innings Tom Glavine struck out no one and walked four batters while surrendering four runs to the Chicago Cubs before finally departing the mound due to a strained left elbow. In the 10-5 loss on their first of a ten game road-trip, Greg Norton managed to hit a three-run home run for the Braves and Omar Infante reached base three times and had a triple. Chipper Jones pinch hit and drew a walk maintaining his .420 batting average. Jones was recently named the NL player of the week for June 2-8 for batting .579 and having 11 hits with 3 home runs. The loss was the Braves’ 15th out of their last 19 games and now the Braves must struggle to win on the road or risk losing their chance of reaching the NL playoffs. In other news, veteran John Smoltz was reported to have had a successful operation on his shoulder and his future as a pitcher will be determined in the coming months as it will be dependent upon his rehabilitation.
The Braves have been much more successful at home then away this season, but playing the Phillies at Turner Field would not be enough to secure a win on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. Atlanta took the first game of the series on Thursday 7-5 when Chipper Jones hit his 400th home run, but lost Friday 4-3, Saturday 6-2, and Sunday 6-3. On Friday, Tim Hudson went 7 2/3 innings giving up one run on five hits and Brian McCann hit a two-run home run to give the Braves the lead when the bullpen took over in the Seventh. However, the bullpen wouldn’t be able to hold off the bats of the Phillies and the Braves would lose the game. On Saturday it was almost a repeat of Friday, Chipper Jones hit a two-run shot in the Sixth and Jo-Jo Reyes went a solid 7 1/3 innings but the Phillies rallied in the Eighth with the game tied at two to take the lead 4-2 before gaining two more runs in the Ninth off the Atlanta bullpen to win 6-2. This afternoon the Braves were forced to take on the Phillies without their lead hitter and the Majors lead hitter, Chipper Jones, who is batting .420. Mark Teixeira came through in the First to tie the lead at two with a two-run home run. The Braves and Phillies were tied at three going into the Ninth, but once again the bullpen could not hold off the bats of the Phillies and they would rally for three runs to take the game 6-3. The Braves bullpen was not the only part of the team struggling as throughout the weekend’s series they stranded ten runners and had just four hits in 24 at-bats with runners in scoring position. Now the Braves have tomorrow night off before heading to Chicago to take on the Cubs in a three-game series. Throughout the season the Braves have relied on Turner Field to be the rejuvenator of victories before hitting the road again. This time the Braves are returning to the road after three consecutive losses so with this in mind the Braves will now have to once again try to tackle their road woes and come away with some wins.
Last night, it appeared as though the road woes of the Braves could be spreading to Turner Field. On his first pitch of the night, Jair Jurrjens surrendered a home run to Marlins hitter Hanley Ramirez. Atlanta was down 5-3 in the Fifth when Brian McCann put the Braves ahead with a two-run homer, and he was followed by a solid performance in Jair Jurrjens who continued to trudge ahead giving up five runs on eleven hits. However, McCann was not the only hitter for the Braves to go deep. Yunel Escobar hit a solo shot in the Third, and the hit of the night came from Chipper Jones who hit his 400th career home run in the Sixth. Jones went 4 for 5 on the night and is now batting .418. His homer helped clinch the lead for Atlanta who won 7-5. Tonight the Braves will begin their series at home against the Phillies with Tim Hudson on the mound.
After five solid innings on the mound, Tom Glavine only allowed two earned runs on six hits including a home run, while striking out six and only walking two, Glavine recorded yet another no decision as Manny Acosta couldn’t not close the game with a save. In the Ninth inning, the Braves lost their two-run lead as the Marlins rallied for two two-run homers to win the game 6-4. The Braves combined for four RBIs on the day from Greg Norton, Yunel Escobar, Jeff Francoeur, and Josh Anderson. The game only added to the somber mood around the Atlanta bullpen after news yesterday was released that veteran John Smoltz would undergo season-ending shoulder surgery. Smoltz did not say this would be his last season, but instead insisted he had hopes of being on the mound again next season. The veteran was unsuccessful on Monday night in his first attempt for a save and has spent most of the season on the DL. Atlanta will now take on Florida in the last game of the series with Jair Jurrjens on the mound before starting the series against the Philadelphia Phillies at Turner Field on Friday night.
Out of 20 home games this season, the Braves won their 17th last night against the Marlins 5-4. Chipper Jones hit his 399th career home run in the First with two men on base. Jones is now batting .409 for the season. After a run in both the First and Second inning, the Marlins rallied for two runs in the Fourth to take the lead 4-3. Dan Uggla hit a solo home run in the Second for the Marlins and then a two-run shot in the Fourth. The Braves were quiet at the plate until the Eighth inning when Greg Norton hit a double down the first base line to knock in two runs. The Braves are now 3.5 games behind the Phillies for the lead in the NL East and one game behind the Marlins for second place. Game three of the series is this afternoon and the Braves hope to continue having success at Turner Field with Tom Glavine starting on the mound.
After six innings and then two batters in the Seventh, giving up three runs on five hits while striking out four and walking one, Jo-Jo Reyes received a no-decision for his performance on Monday night. Back at Turner Field the rookie pitcher gave a solid performance that setup the win the Braves would clinch in the Tenth when Yunel Escobar hit a two-run walk-off homer. In the Ninth inning, John Smoltz came in for the save, but he was unable to record one as the Marlins rallied for two runs to tie the game. However, happy to be back at Turner Field, home sweet home for the Braves this year, the luck was with the Braves and they came through with a 7-5 victory in the close game. Jeff Francoeur and Mark Teixeira both homered and Chipper Jones went 2 for 4 boosting his average to .407.
The Braves lost the last game of the series to the Reds on Sunday 6-2. After back-to-back homers by Mark Teixeira and Brian McCann in the Seventh the Reds rallied for another three runs to clinch the win. Both Tim Hudson and Blaine Boyer were forced to leave in the Seventh due to injuries. Hudson completed six innings in which he gave up four runs, three were earned, on seven hits while striking out and walking three. With a strained hamstring, Hudson will be out for a short period. Chipper Jones went 0 for 4 at the plate with two strike outs and is now batting .405. On this road series, the Braves had one win and lost five including four one-run losses. The frustration continues to build for the team on the road, but right now there is relief that the team is returning to Turner Field. Atlanta is set to take on the Marlins, who are half a game behind Phillies in the lead for the NL East, starting tonight. Jo-Jo Reyes (2-3) will have the start against Scott Olsen (4-2).
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