For the first time all year, that really felt like the last three years.
It was a Friday night, the place was packed, there were two first place teams, and most of all the game did not feel over at 4-2. So many times this season things have just felt dead or dreary, but the vibe around the ballclub and the fanbase is different right now.
The Braves were playing from behind basically the whole way until the 7th, but they kept it close enough for long enough to feel like they were going to come back. And sure enough, the offense put up a four-run 7th inning and the bullpen held on for a 6-5 win.
I don’t know where it’s going to lead, but these were the Braves we were desperate to see for four months. And here we are, just in time for the stretch run.
- The Braves beat the team with the best record in baseball. Beyond anything else, that’s the main thing.
- Max Fried almost fell off the rails a couple times times tonight, but he carried the game long enough to give the Braves a chance. His curveball wasn’t as sharp as it has been and he made a bad 3-0 mistake to Buster Posey in the first inning, but he never let the game get out of hand.
- Speaking of not letting it get out of hand, that was a huge 7th inning from AJ Minter. The momentum from him wiggling out of that jam carried over to the offense in the bottom half of the frame.
- Adam Duvall and Jorge Soler hit moonshots and Joc Pederson made a game-saving catch on the day Eddie Rosario was called up to the majors. Take a bow, Alex Anthopolous.
- Another perfect inning for Luke Jackson against the heart of San Francisco’s order in a high leverage situation. How many of us expected to trust him more than Will Smith in key spots when the season started?
- Marked safe from losing to Kevin Gausman on his return to Atlanta.
- Should I have the Will Smith conversation here or is it just beating a dead horse at this point? He has allowed eight runs in his last 10 ⅓ innings, good (?) for a 6.96 ERA. He has surrendered five home runs in that span and opposing hitters have an OPS over 1.000 in that span. He is going to be better no matter when he pitches, but the Braves do have better options for the 9th inning at this point.
- Ozzie Albies wasn’t charged with an error for his bobble in the 4th inning, but it did cost the Braves a run. That coupled with the 0-2 hit by La Stella felt like a real gut punch at the time.
- Could that first inning have been different without the 35-minute delay in the middle, and could Fried have been sharper without having to wait almost an hour between pitches? Maybe, but I guess we’ll never know.
Former Brave Of The Day:
His team lost, but I’ll give the nod to Tommy La Stella for picking up two hits and an RBI tonight.
Quote Of The Game:
“This is my kind of team.”
— Lou Brown, Major League
Keep these good vibes going and take a series against the best team in baseball.