Chris Johnson continued his pursuit of the NL batting title as he drove in Justin Upton to the put the Braves up 1-0 in the fourth. Freddie Freeman hit his 21st homer of the season in the sixth inning and the two runs were all the Braves would need to finally end their losing streak to San Diego. BJ Upton walked three times and didn’t look completely lost at the plate which is nice to see as the Braves prepare for the postseason.
Kris Medlen continued his excellent second half surge in which he has reestablished himself as one of the Braves better starters. Medlen went 7.1 innings without allowing a run and left the game with a 2-0 lead. Five strikeouts and two walks and a series of weakly hit balls allowed Medlen to cruise through the Padres weak lineup. David Carpenter relived Medlen with one out in the eighth and got two quick outs to end one of the Padres few scoring chances in the game.
While the Braves finally defeated the Padres, things couldn’t end without a little weirdness as Chase Headley hit the first homer off Craig Kimbrel since May 7th. Kimbrel came into the ninth with a two run lead that he seemed almost overqualified to hold as the Padres hadn’t seemed like a serious threat to score all night. Headley though took Kimbrel deep to cut the Braves lead in half. A two out walk and a stolen base put the contest legitimately in question before Kimbrel finally nailed down the victory.
The Nationals loss to the Phillies combined with the Braves win cut the Braves magic number to four games. If the Braves can win their rubber match with the Padres on Sunday they stand an excellent chance to clinch the NL East in Washington.
Tags: Atlanta Braves