Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

Braves beat Nats for first Spring win

Braves Country – REJOICE! Your Atlanta Braves are no longer winless this spring!

Today the Braves played host to the Washington Nationals, and while it’s the beginning of March, based on the lineups, we’d excuse you if you thought we were deep into the regular season.

Both squads sent out lineups that we may very well see on Opening Day today, with the Braves lining up like this:

Jason Heyward RF
B.J. Upton CF
Freddie Freeman 1B
Evan Gattis C
Justin Upton DH
Chris Johnson 3B
Dan Uggla 2B
Andrelton Simmons SS
Jordan Schafer LF

No matter the time of year, that is a scary lineup, and if the Braves were opening in an A.L. park (or in Milwaukee 16 years earlier), it’s most likely dead on what we will see when the season opens, with J-Up as the DH and Schafer as competent a replacement in left as anyone.

Anyways, just food for thought.

But the Braves finally won!

Stephen Strausburg got the start for Washington, and went only the allotted 2 innings, and allowed, in a word, nada. Luckily, the Braves wasted no time, tacking two runs on Taylor Jordan in his final inning of work (the bottom of the 4th), as Gattis drove a double into left-field to bring home Justin and Freeman, and it would tie the game at two.

Unfortunately, the Nats would get the lead right back, as Ian Desmond hit a dinger off of Cody Martin.

No more blood would be drawn until the 7th, in which case the Nationals would add some insurance. But, in typical Nats vs. Braves fashion, Washington wouldn’t be able to hold on to the lead.

Bottom of the 7th, Drew Storen pitching, Simmons at the plate. Boom. Double into left field, plating Tommy La Stella and Philip Gosselin. (Again, not out of the question we could be saying this very thing in the middle of July.) Tie ball game.

But Gosselin isn’t done there. Next offensive frame for the Bravos, he’s at the plate, and rips a triple into center field off of former Brave Luis Ayala, and plates Joey Terdoslavich and Chrstian Bethancourt to take the lead, and take it for good.

The Braves would get one more in the bottom of the 8th to finishing off the scoring (guess who? Yep, Gosselin scores. Again), and defeat those pesky Nats 8-4.

While the first few games of the spring have been disappointing, especially on the scoreboard, today explained why no one should panic quiet yet. Aside from Strausburg pitching like, you know, Strausburg, the pitching staff of the Braves were able to shut down a close-to-midseason line up from the Nats, while the a similarly formed lineup for the Braves was able to prevail.

So let’s all take a breath, relish in the victory, and look forward to tomorrow.

And to not forget, that when those ridiculous multi-colored BP jerseys are on during a game (actually, must admit, they have grown on me. Look better on the field than they did when first announced), nothing, except health and progression really matters.

Chop, chop.

Tags: Atlanta Braves

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