Jorge Sosa had his strikeout pitch working Thursday afternoon, and the Braves offense, behind Jeff Francoeur, scored early and often en route to a four-game sweep of the Florida Marlins in Atlanta. Sosa had his strongest and longest outing so far this season, lasting 6.2 innings and throwing 102 pitches. Sosa's previous longest outing of the year was a six inning affair on May 2nd against Colorado. Amazingly in striking out eight he matched the total number of strikeouts he had accumulated during the entire month of April (a four game span), and he doubled his May total so far (a three game span). Jorge lowered his ERA almost an entire run from 6.52 to 5.55. He needs to keep this up, especially with the injury to Davies.
Brian McCann, the leading hitter in the National League, batting in the eighth spot in the lineup, led off the bottom of the third with a single to right. After Giles singled and Renteria walked, the Braves scored two runs, one on a sac fly by Chipper Jones, and the other on a wild pitch. The Braves added another run in the fourth inning on a lead-off double by Jeff Francoeur, who came around to score on a sac fly by Brian Jordan.
But it was the fifth inning when the flood gates really opened up for the home team. After a Giles walk and an infield single by Renteria, Chipper Jones drove them both in on a double. After Andruw Jones, who was 0 for 4 on the afternoon, grounded out, Jeff Francoeur ripped a homerun to left-center field to score Chipper and make it a 7 to 1 ballgame. Then Matt Diaz, who went up to the plate hacking, hooked the next pitch from Scott Olsen down the line in left for back to back homeruns.
Jeff Francoeur added a solo homerun in the seventh to give him a team-leading 10 on the year to go along with 36 RBIs. Jeff was once again the offensive star of the game going 3 for 4 with three extra-base hits. Francoeur finishes the seven game homestand with four homeruns and 13 RBIs. His hitting streak was also extended to 16 games, and he has had a base hit in every game this month but the first game.
In some roster moves and possible roster moves, the Braves sent Anthony Lerew back to AAA-Richmond, and activated Lance Cormier off the DL. Todd Pratt, who was supposed to be batting eighth in the lineup on Thursday, was unable to start due to an ankle sprain. McCann started his fifth game in a row, and if Pratt is still unable to make a start in the next few days, the Braves may have to make another roster move. They may opt to bring up Brayan Pena to catch tomorrow, sending down Peter Moylan, and then send Pena right back down when they bring up Travis Smith or Anthony Lerew to start on Saturday.
Florida 1, Atlanta 9 at Turner Field
Florida Record (11-28)
Atlanta Record (21-20)
Winning Pitcher - Jorge Sosa (1-5)
Losing Pitcher - Scott Olsen (2-3)