Big win. The Braves trailed 3-0 until the seventh, but rallied back to win, the first time they’ve won after trailing by three or more runs this year.
The hitting hero (for my money) was Ryan Langerhans, who doubled, tripled, and walked. In the seventh, he doubled with Estrada on first. Estrada scored on Julio’s groundout, then Langerhans on a wild pitch. In the ninth, he tripled off a porch in right — off of Billy Wagner, no less — and scored on Betemit’s flyout to give the Braves the lead. Maybe Langerhans will get some starts against lefties now. In between, Andruw doubled home Giles in the eighth.
Jorge Sosa gave up the homer, but that was the only hit he allowed. Unfortunately, he walked four, though he also struck out four. Giving up three runs on one hit is pretty impressive, though. Foster replaced him with one out and one on in the sixth, and had a strikeout and a walk. Gryboski finished the inning.
Kolb pitched the seventh — a one run game, mind you. He allowed a leadoff hit but got the next three, capped with a strikeout. Brower gave up a hit and a walk but had a caught stealing in the middle to get out of it, picking up the win. Reitsma’s control wasn’t his sharpest but he got two flyouts and a game-ending strikeout for the save.
The Natspos won by — well, you know. Look at it this way — the Braves picked up two games on the Cubs for the wildcard! (FWIW, the Braves are 1 1/2 up on the Marlins in that, even in the loss column.) The Braves now face those Cubs for four in Atlanta. Kerry Wood will face Davies tomorrow, but perhaps more interestingly, on Tuesday Greg Maddux will pitch in Atlanta for the first time in a year and a half. I expect that he’ll get a warmer reception than Tom Glavine’s gotten used to.
As expected, Smoltz and Andruw made the All-Star team. I wonder if Bobby might think about starting Smoltz on three day’s rest on the Sunday before the break, which would probably hold him out of the game.