Thursday, August 15, 2013

Game 3 Recap: Phillies 8/14/13

Chalk one up for the good guys after another long rain delay. I'll admit I was worried when the Braves had to wait out the weather for the 2nd game of this 3 game series, but it turned out in our favor when Jason Heyward blasted a homer on the first Braves AB of the game. Lannan could barely cope with the onslaught of early hitting, and as a result he was gone by the 2nd inning. The bad news for Lannan is that it may be a season-ending knee problem that he aggravated in the game. That meant the Phillies bullpen had to shoulder the load. They weren't able to stop the avalanche in the 2nd as the Braves put 3 more runs on the board to make the game 5-0. That's when Beachy went to work.

Beachy went 6 strong innings, 5 of which were shutout innings before finally surrendering a 2 run homer in the 6th. Knowing how much of a perfectionist Beachy is, he's probably still mad about that homer today. The good news is that he admittedly had all 4 of his pitches working, and that made him difficult to hit. The Phillies only tallied 6 hits off Brandon with no walks and 4 Ks. Also, after all the kudos I gave Carpenter yesterday, he struggled in the 9th inning, giving up a homer and a walk, thus opening the door for Kimbrel to get his 38th save. I'd like to think that was on purpose, but I think Carpenter just didn't know Ruf for the Phillies can absolutely ton the ball. Either way, it was a decent pitching performance by all involved to keep the Phillies to 3 runs.

The hitting fell off after the 2nd inning, but when it was hot it made the difference in the game. The Braves had 6 runs on 9 hits, 5 walks, and 6 Ks. Jason Heyward was extremely impressive with a homer and a double on the day, and Simmons managed a double and a run as well. CJ also really came through in the 2nd with 2 outs by knocking two guys in to make the game 5-0, and also racking up 3 RBIs on the day. Chris Johnson continues to be the unsung story of the Braves dominance this year. He's slugging now .480 on the season to go with his NL leading batting average of .337, and he's had 53 RBIs even though he spent almost 30% of his ABs in the 8th slot. The RISP hitting for the Braves yesterday was only 2-10, so not up to par, but when you are able to get into the bullpen in the 2nd inning of any NL team with a lead? You should win that game.

Now we have a nice off-day before the Nats roll back into town. I'm sure they'll be ready to take some revenge on Julio after the Bryce Harper dust-up, but I hope that's the only satisfaction they get all series. What I really want is for the Braves to take 2 of 3 against them, and basically put the 2nd to last nail in the coffin of that club. The last nail will come when that magic number reaches 0.


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