Nothing cures a 9-game losing streak like facing the terrible Astros. The Braves won game one behind the Tommy Hanson - Jason Heyward combo, they carried that confidence over into game two behind Troy Glaus, Tim Hudson, and Jason Heyward, and they continued their winning march in game three behind Derek Lowe and the bottom of the batting order, featuring... Jason Heyward.
Yep, the J-Hey kid was at it again. He put the Braves on the board first in the second inning with a sac fly RBI to the right field wall that looked like a homerun off the bat. He added another RBI in the fourth with a double, and a third RBI with a single an inning later. Jason Heyward is now second in the National League in RBI, the sign of a guy who is getting it done when the team needs him to (and he's a rookie?!?).
Derek Lowe managed his way through five innings, and it looked like he didn't have his release point down most of the day. Strange that Lowe had his best outing of the season while he didn't look quite right on the mound, but he kept the ball down, had his sinker working, and got 9 ground balls versus just 3 fly balls. He also limited his bases on balls to just one -- his lowest total of the season.
Interestingly, Lowe was relieved by a kid who might be better than Derek. Kris Medlen looked really sharp in his two innings of work. Ignore the two hits he gave up, they were not well hit balls. Takashi Saito and Billy Wagner closed it out and got some work in with the off-day tomorrow.
Melky Cabrera also gets a strong mention, as he went 2-for-3 on the day with a walk and 3 RBI. He hustled hard all day and came through big with runners on base. Troy Glaus was also 2-for-3, and along with Brian McCann they set the table for Heyward, Cabrera, and the 2-for-4 Omar Infante.
The top third of the order on the other hand was quiet. Nate McLouth, Martin Prado, and Chipper Jones were a collective 0-for-11 with 4 strikeouts, and just one walk from Chipper. But the rest of the lineup picked those guys up. Chipper is starting to concern me, hitting just .206, and 0-for-his-last-14, and just 1-for-his-last-24. He seems to be swinging the bat okay, and doesn't "look" injured, so I can only assume that he's just been slowed by his previous injuries and maybe his timing is slightly off.
It was a good win for the Braves, who start a hard 9-game road trip on Tuesday. Now they know they can win again, and they've gone a long way towards putting the 9-game road trip out of their minds.
|Final - 5.2.2010||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|WP: Derek Lowe (4 - 2)
LP: Bud Norris (1 - 3)