The Braves were hot coming into tonight’s game, winning eight in a row before the first pitch. It seemed like that number would climb up to nine by the end of the game, after another strong pitching performance by Julio Teheran. He threw 6.2 innings and allowed just one earned run on a Lucas Duda homerun. He struck out five and walked three in the outing, and also gave up just five hits.
The Braves would take the lead in the seventh inning after Dan Uggla hit a two-run homer, scoring Justin Upton in the process. A few years ago (or even a few weeks ago) a Braves lead in the seventh inning is pretty much game over. But, the bullpen is worn down, and it looks like Cory Gearrin’s luck is worn out. Gearrin came in to pitch the eighth inning and blew the game, giving up four hits and allowing four earned runs.
It’s not the end of the world for Atlanta. They are still leading the NL East by 4.5 games and just came off of a great week of baseball but I have to start worrying about the bullpen. It will be important for the Braves to get it figured out sooner rather than later. Every game will count at the end of the season and if we can secure wins late in games, it could make all the difference. Gearrin is a fine bullpen pitcher but he isn’t a guy that should be coming in with the game close.
It has been rumored that Frank Wren is looking for relief pitching help, and I don’t see why he wouldn’t be. It’s one of the few holes the Braves have at the moment. Jordan Walden should be back at some point this week if he doesn’t run into any setbacks that is the only pitcher we can expect back until Brandon Beachy‘s return near the All-Star break.
We will be keeping an eye on the Braves relief situation as it unfolds, so be sure to check back for the latest news and analysis. Also watch out for Brad’s recap of the Mets series at some point later tonight or tomorrow morning.