(Injured) Beast: Chipper Jones. Chipper hit .478….yes…… .478 this week. It’s almost mid-June and he’s hitting .420. He had 6 RBIs but couldn’t stop the Braves from losing 3 in a row to the Phils. Jones sat the last two games with a right quad strain.
Runners-Up: Mark Teixeira, John Anderson
Least: Kelly Johnson. Well, Friday’s game was enough of a reason. He dropped the game winning out in the 9th against the Phillies, leading to an eventual sweep.
Runners-Down: Jeff Francoeur, Brian McCann
The Phillies fell behind 3-0 to the Braves in the first inning after RBI hits by Chipper Jones and Jeff Francoeur. But Kyle Kendrick quickly calmed down after the first inning. He ended up going the next five innings without allowing a run. That gave him his third 6 inning, 3 earned run outing in a row. From a guy fifth in the rotation, the Phillies should be happy that he gives them a chance to win.
Offensively, the Phillies came to play tonight. Facing Jo-Jo Reyes, the Phillies started their attack in the 4th, when Jason Werth singled to center, driving in Chase Utley and big-man Ryan Howard. Howard, who was part of the action all night long, notched an RBI of his own in the fifth, knocking in Shane Victorino. Later in the inning, Werth continued his barrage, hitting in Howard. And, in the 7th, Werth would grab yet another RBI to give the Phillies their fifth run. Werth ended the night with 4 RBIs.
In the 9th, things got a little bit shaky as Brad Lidge faced adversity for one of the only times this season. With one out, Mark Kotsay walked and then advanced to 2nd base after fielder interference. At this point, Chipper Jones, who already had 3 hits on the night, hit a bomb just short of the fence in left. Eric Bruntlett, who pinch-ran for Burrell in the 7th, caught the ball right in front of the wall, saving Phillies fans and Brad Lidge a lot of grief. But the fight wasn’t over from the Braves. Brian McCann came up next and doubled, driving in Kotsay and making it a 1 run game. It should be noted that Jason Werth misplayed the ball, first breaking in and then running backwards as the ball flew well over his head. He probably should have made the play.
Lidge was having trouble finding the plate at this point and walked Greg Norton, bringing up Francoeur, who was 0-4 lifetime against Lidge. Falling behind quickly in the count, Francoeur finally lifted a ball between Werth and right fielder Shane Victorino. Victorino called Werth off at the last second and caught the ball to end the game. Not a moment too soon for Lidge, who let up his first earned run of the year in 18 innings of work.
The Phillies started their homestand with a thorough game all around, while the Braves continue to struggle on the road. They are now 5-15 away from Turner Field. Also, the Phillies have to be outright elated that Ryan Howard finally looks to be coming out of his slump. He was 2-4 with a long double to center field and now has an RBI in each of his last three games, as well as in 4 out of his last 5 games. He’s upped his average to .181 for the season.
Posted in Braves, Phillies
Tagged Brad Lidge, Braves, Brian McCann, Chase Utley, Chipper Jones, Eric Bruntlett, Greg Norton, Jason Werth, Jeff Francoeur, Jo-Jo Reyes, Kyle Kendrick, Mark Kotsay, Phillies, Ryan Howard, Shane Victorino
And for the second week in a row, the Braves Beast of the Week is 3B Chipper Jones. Chipper was great again this week, hitting .304 with 7 RBIs and 2 long balls for a team-leading OPS of 1.060. You can’t say anything bad about this guy–he just does everything right.
Runners-Up: Mark Kotsay, Brian McCann, Jair Jurrjens
The Braves’ least of the week is RF Jeff Francoeur. Jeff didn’t hit well this week, going just 3-22 (.136, .296, .182), walking 4 times and striking out 7. He still did manage to drive in 2 runs, amazingly, and remains a threat in the bottom of the Atlanta lineup despite the bad stretch.
Runners-Up: Jo-Jo Reyes, Tom Glavine
Marlins 7-Nationals 3 [BEAST-OFF]
Tim Redding never had it for the Nationals, going only 5.1 and giving up 6 runs, 5 earned, walking 4 and striking out 3. He got the loss on the night, and now stands at 4-3 on the year. Luis Gonzalez drove in three runs on the night and Jorge Cantu drove in two. Hanley Ramirez notched his 21st RBI of the year. For the Marlins, Ricky Nolasco was very good, getting the win and surrendering just one run on 4 hits in 6 innings of work, striking out 6 and walking 2. The reliable Doug Waechter was not so good in relief, surrendering two earned runs in two-thirds of an inning of work. But the rest of the fish pen held up. For the Nationals, Wily Mo Peña, Cristian Guzman, and Nick Johnson drove in runs. Ryan Zimmerman went 0-4 with a walk. Elijah Dukes returned to the Nationals, going 0-2 on the night.
Pirates 3-Braves 2
Tom Glavine is still winless after 6 starts, pitching well (7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 2 SO), but getting no run support. Glavine got the no-decision after Freddy Sanchez hit a walk-off single in the ninth off of Jeff Bennett to snap the Braves’ perfect May. Ian Snell pitched well for the Bucs, going 7 full, giving up 1 run on 2 hits, walking 6 and striking out 5. John Grabow picked up his second year of the year for the Pirates. Jeff Francoeur represented the entirety of the Braves’ offense, driving in both runs, one off of Snell and one off of Tyler Yates, who blew the save for Pittsburgh.
Posted in Braves, Marlins, Nationals
Tagged Braves, Cristian Guzman, Doug Waechter, Elijah Dukes, Freddy Sanchez, Hanley Ramirez, Ian Snell, Jeff Bennett, Jeff Francoeur, John Grabow, Jorge Cantu, Luis Gonzalez, Marlins, Nationals, Nick Johnson, Pirates, Ricky Nolasco, Ryan Zimmerman, Tim Redding, Tom Glavine, Tyler Yates, Wily Mo Peña
The Braves Beast of the Week is…
Chipper Jones, 3B. Chipper has easily been the Braves MVP of the season, leading the team in Batting Average (.425), Home Runs (9), RBIs (27), and OBP (.472). This week alone, he went .353, .421, .588. This year, Chipper can really take advantage of a lineup that includes players like Yunel Escobar above him and Mark Teixiera, Brian McCann, and Jeff Francoeur after him.
Runners-Up: Mark Teixiera (OPS of 1.033), Jair Jurjjens (WHIP of 0.29), Tim Hudson (10 SO in 9 innings)
The least of the week is Kelly Johnson. Kelly did not hit well this week (.176, .222, .294) and only walked once, which is not acceptable for a leadoff hitter (see: Jose Reyes).
Runners-Up: Blaine Boyer, Manny Acosta, Gregor Blanco
Posted in Braves
Tagged Blaine Boyer, Braves, Brian McCann, Chipper Jones, Gregor Blanco, Jair Jurjjens, Jeff Francoeur, Jose Reyes, Kelly Johnson, Manny Acosta, Mark Teixiera, Tim Hudson, Yunel Escobar