Paul Maholm did his job in his Braves debut, but the team didn’t back him up offensively and he took the loss. If it wasn’t for Justin Maxwell, who hit two home runs for the visitors, Maholm might have won anyway.
Nobody scored in the first three innings. The Braves had a two-out chance in the first after Jason Heyward doubled and Chipper Jones walked, but couldn’t cash in. In the fourth, the first of Maxwell’s homers, a two-run shot, gave the Astros the lead. Dan Uggla hit into a double play to ruin a chance in the bottom of the inning. He made up for it in the sixth with a bases-loaded single to score two runs and tie the game. But Maxwell hit a solo homer in the seventh to retake the lead, and all the Braves produced the rest of the way, against a weak pen, was Uggla getting hit by a pitch, only to be erased on Juan Francisco‘s GIDP.
Maholm went seven and allowed three runs; that’s what the Braves were looking for from him. He struck out eight and walked two, which is more than they expected, but the two homers were obviously not something they wanted. Promising start, still.