The Braves desperately needed a huge inning and they certainly got one in the sixth inning of today's game. Brooks Conrad got it all started and then the next five hitters all hit and scored. It was looking rather grim before the huge inning, with Chris Carpenter pitching well until the huge inning.
Carpenter ended up allowing seven runs over five innings, a lackluster performance for the annual Cy Young candidate. He allowed each run to score, with his bullpen throwing three scoreless innings.
Mike Minor did not pitch well either, but was victim of a lot of hits landing. He struck out four and walked one over five plus innings, but allowed seven hits and four earned runs. Peter Moylan, Takashi Saito, and Billy Wagner pitched scoreless innings, with Jonny Venters allowing one earned run and getting out of a jam in the seventh inning.
Brian McCann's sac fly ended up giving the Braves the lead. It was originally ruled a triple but then an error on right fielder Jon Jay. This was honestly one of the biggest innings the Braves had all season. Derrek Lee even came up with a hit, his second run scoring hit in as many games. Nate McLouth hit a homer and drove another pitch almost to the warning track. He is seeing the ball very well and should continue to get close to regular playing time in center, in my opinion.
Tomorrow, the Braves have Tommy Hanson on the hill against Jake Westbrook. Westbrook hasn't been completely terrible as a Cardinal and Hanson has struggled as of late, but this is still an obvious advantage for the Braves. With Hudson and Hanson going in the final two games the Braves have a great chance to win the final two games of the series.