Phillies Hammer Braves Bullpen 10-2

The bullpen was the strength of the 2010 Braves. Not so much in this game. The Phillies beat up on three Atlanta relievers in a 10-2 drubbing.

Once again, the Phillies drew first blood in the first inning. Shane Victorino led off the game with a double, but Brandon Beachy retired the next two batters before issuing an intentional walk to Ryan Howard. Ben Francisco followed the walk with a single to score Victorino.

The Braves broke through against Oswalt in the third. After Alex Gonzalez led off the inning with a double to right, Freddie Freeman drove him in with a single to left to tie the game. After Beachy's sacrifice bunt, Martin Prado singled to right, but Ben Francisco fumbled the ball allowing Freeman to score the go-ahead run.

The lead didn't last long, though. Beachy retired Howard and Francisco in quick fashion but issued a four-pitch walk to Raul Ibanez. Brian Schneider followed by depositing a fastball for a two-run homer to right.

The Braves had a very good scoring opportunity in the sixth. With two outs, Chipper Jones singled to left; Brian McCann and Dan Uggla both walked to load the bases. However, Jason Heyward hit an infield pop-up to squander the threat.

The game turned ugly in the seventh. Beachy was pulled after giving a leadoff single to Raul Ibanez. Fredi Gonzalez opted to bring in George Sherrill; the Phillies countered with John Mayberry and he delivered a single to left. Wilson Valdez followed with a walk to load the bases. When Carlos Ruiz entered as a pinch hitter, Fredi Gonzalez countered with Scott Linebrink. That turned out to be a mistake because Ruiz smacked a grand slam home run to left, the first pinch-hit home run as well as the first grand slam of Ruiz's career. Ryan Howard added an RBI double in the inning.

The Phillies added two more in the eighth: with one out, Michael Martinez singles to center and scores on Ruiz's two-out double. Ruiz then scored on Shane Victorino's fourth hit of the game.

Alex Gonzalez reached a personal milestone: his third-inning double was the 300th of his career.

Atlanta's Bullpen:

3.0 IP, 8 hits, 6 runs

The bullpen was not well-managed in this game, and Fredi Gonzalez will almost certainly be asked about the decision to bring in Linebrink instead of Peter Moylan. Sherrill and Linebrink will certainly need to pitch better than this, especially against a team like the Phillies. It's still early in the season, but it's no less disappointing.

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