The 2014 Atlanta Braves season is underway, and after each series, we will take a dive into what took place. Be sure to follow our game-by-game recaps for more in-depth coverage, but if you miss anything, this will be a nice place to catch up on the latest. Without further ado, let’s get to the series win over Milwaukee.
Monday, March 31st – Loss (2-0) (Click for game recap)
The season opener wasn’t exactly chalk filled with fireworks, and the scoreboard reflects that. Unfortunately, the only scoring of the day came when noted Braves killer Aramis Ramirez blasted a 2-run double off of Julio Teheran in the 4th inning, and when the dust settled, that was the difference in the game. Speaking of Teheran, he pitched effectively (6 innings, 7 hits, 2 ER), but the right-hander didn’t have his best stuff (only 2 strikeouts) and had trouble locating the fastball throughout the day. With the bats, only Andrelton Simmons had a multi-hit game, and there weren’t a ton of positive swings against Yovani Gallardo.
Tuesday, April 1st – Win (5-2)
It was the Freddie Freeman show on Tuesday night, and that is always a pleasure. The newly-rich first baseman blasted 2 home runs during a 3-for-3 day, and when coupled with a Jason Heyward 2-run home run and a big day with Dan Uggla (2-4, 2 doubles), it was nice to see the offense come alive a bit. In addition, left-hander Alex Wood sparkled throughout his 2014 debut, navigating 7 innings with only 5 hits and 1 earned run before handing things over to David Carpenter (who did allow a run) and Craig Kimbrel for the door slam.
Wednesday, April 2nd – Win (1-0)
1-0 victories are victories nonetheless, and that was exactly the case on Wednesday in the afternoon series finale. The story of the day was the effort from Aaron Harang, who made his Braves debut with a fantastic performance. Harang pitched 6.2 innings while allowing only 2 hits and 0 earned runs, and while he wasn’t dominant per se, he did take a no-hitter into the 6th inning based on quality location and pitch selection. Expectations should certainly be tempered, but the big right-hander was great here, and he bailed out an offense that could only generate 3 total hits (Matt Garza also had a no-no into the 7th) and a single Chris Johnson home run.
It is impossible to argue with a series victory to get things going, and grabbing such a win on the back of only 6 total runs in 3 games is even more encouraging. There has been significant worry about the pitching staff in lead up to the season, but this showing should quiet the doubters, and provide a little bit of breathing room as the Braves head to Washington to take on the NL East favorites over the weekend. Stay tuned.
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