Hudson was shaky early, falling behind 4-0 after two, and the Braves couldn’t do much of anything on offense until the ninth inning, have lost four in a row, and will probably fall out of first, barring an unlikely Tampa Bay rally. Hudson settled down after allowing two homers in the second, but picked up the loss, going six and walking a Kolbesque five men. John Foster continued to excel, pitching a perfect seventh, and Adam Bernero a shutout eighth, striking out two, while walking one just to keep the memory of Kolb alive.
The Braves managed but one run on three hits against Wade Miller, Jordan doubling and scoring (on a Mondesi groundout) in the fifth. In the ninth, Keith Foulke wasn’t fooling anyone and the Braves got two runs highlighted by Andruw’s triple off that goofy railing on the goofy porch in right-center. But Julio wound up hitting into a double play to end the game when a rocket bounced off the mound.
The middle infielders were both 0-4, Marcus getting ejected after his last at-bat when he went after the first base umpire (who earlier in the count had called a clear no-swing a strike) and Hubbard had to restrain him; fines are no doubt forthcoming.
I don’t know why Julio was in the lineup as the DH. I mean, I think he’s great, but you have a righthander on the mound, and Wilson Betemit has had two super games in a row while Chipper is recovering from an injury. DHing Chipper and having Betemit play third would seem the way to go. Alternatively, Orr could play third and leadoff, moving Furcal to the nine spot (as Joe was openly lobbying for after Rafael’s fourth out of the game).
Oh, joy, Tim Wakefield tomorrow. Even if you hit him he can mess you up for a week.