I don’t actually know how you can sugarcoat this, so I’ll simply say it: the 2021 Atlanta Braves had been defeated on Friday evening (or Saturday morning) in 11 innings by a sacrifice fly off the bat of former compadre Kevin Gausman. Sure, Kevin Gausman, who was batting as a result of the Giants had been out of place gamers. They got here again within the high of the ninth due to a three-run homer from Travis d’Arnaud, needed to play underneath the silly extra-inning guidelines nonetheless in impact for some motive as a result of Will Smith gave up a two-out, two-strike homer to Donovan Solano, survived a possible game-ending state of affairs within the tenth, simply to lose due to the mix of Kevin Gausman and Jacob Webb airmailing a pickoff throw to second base. Yeah, I don’t know. There’s an excellent workforce someplace on this roster, however it’s superb at hiding behind substantial dunes of actually dumb stuff.
Now that you realize the gist, I suppose we are able to speak concerning the recreation because it occurred. The Braves really jumped out to a fast two-run lead in opposition to Logan Webb, as a two-out rally paid dividends. Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley each singled, and Adam Duvall hit a weak flare that landed truthful in proper discipline and bounced to the wall, scoring them each. The issue was that Ian Anderson instantly gave these runs again, issuing a leadoff stroll after which yielding a no-doubter homer to Brandon Belt. Anderson had a weird outing, becoming for this weird recreation, wherein he went from dominant to erratically horrible, usually throughout the span of a single inning. It’s not clear precisely what’s plaguing him, however even after a good outing in opposition to the Marlins, he’s not again to the place he was.
Issues solely received worse for Anderson and the Braves within the backside of the second, as Brandon Crawford teed off on a excessive fastball and smacked it to left for an opposite-field solo shot. Within the fourth, it was LaMonte Wade’s flip so as to add to his dinger tally, as he led off that body by depositing a 2-0 hanging changeup for a solo shot. After that, the sport was fairly quiet for some time. A two-out stroll adopted by a double chased Anderson, however A.J. Minter struck out Crawford to maintain the deficit at two. Anderson completed with seven strikeouts to only two walks, however allowed 4 runs on three longballs in 5 2⁄3 innings. Webb completed sturdy by hurling six scoreless frames after his two-run first, eviscerating the Braves general with 9 strikeouts and nil walks. Chris Martin and Sean Newcomb threw scoreless frames in reduction, whereas the Braves had been set down 1-2-3 by Dominic Leone within the eighth.
That arrange the ninth, with sidewinding Tyler Rogers… and one thing superb occurred. Riley began the inning with a hard-hit single. Duvall adopted with one among his personal. Eddie Rosario additionally lined it arduous, however proper to an infielder, for the primary out. Up subsequent was Travis d’Arnaud, and someway, after giving up 4 homers and trailing a lot of the recreation… the Braves led?
The Braves didn’t get anything off Rogers, however all they wanted to do was get three outs to not lose a recreation within the standings to the Phillies. They didn’t. Will Smith got here on for his first look in his outdated stomping floor. It didn’t go effectively. Or, effectively, it did, till it didn’t. First, Smith received a pop-out. Then he struck out Wilmer Flores on a verify swing known as on the plate. He received forward, 0-2, on Donovan Solano, who was simply activated from the Injured Record. Then, he threw a fifth straight slider, the one one of many sequence that was anyplace close to the zone… and it received smashed into the left-field nook for a game-tying solo homer. Look, I recognize Will Smith’s single-minded dedication to ensure each Braves fan understands how foolhardy spending actual belongings on relievers is, however dude, reduce it out. Severely. Smith additionally practically ended the sport by permitting a walkoff homer to Curt Casali, however it looped foul and he struck him out.
So, if that wasn’t insane sufficient for you, now the Braves and Giants needed to take care of the ridiculous sideshow we presently name “additional innings.” The Braves didn’t rating within the high of the tenth in opposition to Tony Watson, though Freddie Freeman barreled a ball with two outs that was caught on the warning observe in left heart. Tyler Matzek then gave them one other probability to win it by throwing a scoreless, high-drama tenth: Matzek struck out Belt, deliberately walked Buster Posey, received a forceout at second, deliberately walked Kris Bryant, ran the depend full to Crawford, after which lastly received him to hit a tough grounder to brief for the third out.
Within the eleventh, the Braves failed to attain in opposition to Camilo Doval regardless of hitting two extra balls with first rate possibilities to plate a run: Riley hit one arduous (100 mph, .570 hit chance) however proper to the third baseman, and Rosario ended the inning on a .360 hit chance grounder of his personal. Which took us to the bonkers backside half of the eleventh.
It began (and ended) with Jacob Webb, who’s had a fairly unlucky run in additional innings this season. This, too, was unlucky, as Webb began the body by making an attempt to choose off the present runner at second base and failing miserably, permitting the successful run to maneuver to 3rd. That led to an intentional stroll, adopted by a shallow fly that didn’t immediate an advance, after which one other intentional stroll to carry up the pitcher’s spot. Out of place gamers, the Giants had Kevin Gausman bat for Doval. Webb received forward of Gausman 1-2, however then missed with a fastball, after which missed with a changeup. I used to be shocked that Gausman really swung on the 3-2 pitch, however he hit it 256 ft to proper, and Crawford was in a position to tag up and rating forward of Joc Pederson’s throw house.
That was a baseball recreation. It was enjoyable for a bit bit. I hope you loved staying as much as watch 2021 Atlanta Braves baseball. There’ll be extra of it tomorrow, because the Braves attempt to shield what’s now a two-game lead within the division.