Hey, guess what! The Braves’ bullpen sucks! I know!
Horacio Ramirez was partially at fault. He went only five innings, allowing three runs, two earned (the unearned run was his fault and LaRoche’s), because he needed a remarkable 108 pitches to get that far and left the bases loaded in the fifth. He struck out three and walked three, allowing six hits.
Ramirez blew a 2-0 lead after Andruw doubled home Chipper and was in turn doubled home by (unbelievably) LaRoche. LaRoche had another hit later in the game and hit the ball hard on another occasion.
After the lead was blown, the Braves came back with a four-run fifth. Langerhans doubled, Ramirez bunted him to third, and Furcal singled him home. Giles singled, then Chipper flew out. Andruw worked the count and then hit a mammoth homer. He’s just one away from the team record now, and has a career high 118 RBI.
Then, after Ramirez allowed his third run, the bullpen. Boyer allowed a single, but the hitter was thrown out, then he stranded a runner who reached on his error. But then Davies came in to pitch the seventh, and allowed a long homer to, of all people, Vinny Castilla.
Then Bobby sent Davies out to start the eighth. I don’t get it. Sure, he’s a starter, and Reitsma was unavailable, but looking for long relief in a two-run game at this stage of the season was odd. Davies promptly walked the first two men, and Bobby brought in Foster. But Foster (who had warmed up earlier in the game) had nothing, and after a sac bunt allowed a two-run double to tie it, and then walked the next guy. Enter Kolb, who allowed another two run double then got the next two guys. It’s uncanny how much like Gryboski he is. Foster gets the loss. The Braves still can’t hit middle relief, by the way.
The Marlins were pasted by the Phillies so the Braves’ lead stays at 6. Tomorrow, Fox day game, Sosa versus Livan.