Nationals Take Series Finale From Braves 6-2

Derek Lowe got hit up a bit on the day before Derrek Lee makes his Braves debut. Lowe lasted seven innings, struck out six batters, and walked none, but allowed four runs on six hits in a losing effort, making him 11-11 on the season. Lowe could have definitely pitched worse, but he gave up a home run to Mike Morse and an RBI double to Roger Bernadina which forced the Braves to play from behind almost the entire game.

The worst decision of the game was made in the bottom of the eighth, when the Braves got consecutive walks from Omar Infante and Jason Heyward to start the inning. At the time, the Braves were down 4-2. With Martin Prado up , Bobby elected to attempt to bunt, despite both previous players walking, Prado being one of the Braves top hitters, and a notoriously bad bat against right-handed pitching up next in Matt Diaz. Not only was it a bad decision to bunt in the first place, the bunt ended up only going a few feet from home plate and Infante was thrown out at third. Ryan Zimmerman nearly doubled Prado up at first as well, which would have been even more embarrassing. Diaz followed with a fly out to right which advanced the runners and then Brian McCann lined out to first base to end the inning.

Kyle Farnsworth entered the ninth with the Braves still trailing 4-2 and immediately walked leadoff man Adam Kennedy. Two batters later, former Brave Willie Harris came up and put one into the right field seats to extend the National's lead to 6-2. Drew Storen came in to finish the game and retired the Braves in order. Harris made a smooth diving catch on a Melky Cabrera liner for the second out in the ninth and Eric Hinske struck out to end the game.

Offensively, the Braves were seriously slacking as they have against a good amount of left-handers this season. They were held scoreless through the first five innings until Matt Diaz hit a double down the right field line, plating two runners. Diaz tried to steal third two hitters after his double and Alex Gonzalez popped a pitch up in foul territory near first base. Matt slid into third and did not realize the ball was popped up until it was too late and he was doubled up at second. Earlier in the game, the Braves tried a hit and run with Jason Heyward stealing and Prado batting. Prado lined out and it turned into an inning ending double play. The story in this game is letting your bats do the work and being less involved as a manager can pay dividends. Running into outs and giving away outs eriously hurt a team's overall offensive production.

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