Devastating. When Omar Infante hit a long two-run walk-off homer tonight, it took the Braves a long, long time to walk off of the field. You could see just how devastated Craig Kimbrel was to have given up his second homer in as many days and you had to feel bad for the guy. After rallying to take the lead, the Braves bullpen blew yet another lead behind some hard luck and now the Braves wild card lead has shrunk to just 2.5 games over the Cardinals.
The young Marlins took care of the scoring early on for the Fish. Mike Stanton hit two homers that likely totaled 1,000 combined feet in the first and third innings to put the Marlins on top 2-0. Heyward came back with a solo shot of his own in the top of the sixth to cut the deficit to one run. In the following half inning, Minor wisely pitched around Stanton in his third at-bat, putting him on base on just four pitches but then gave up another long shot to Logan Morrison that extended the Marlin lead to 4-1.
The Braves staged their late rally in the top of the seventh beginning with a solo shot off of the bat of Dan Uggla to right center field. Then, after McCann and Freeman smoked ground balls right at infielders to get a quick two outs, followed by one by Alex Gonzalez that got through the left side hole. The Braves were able to capitalize on back-to-back walks to Jason Heyward and Brooks Conrad. Mike Dunn was able to saw off Michael Bourn's bat, but the ball fell directly in front of second base and all runners advanced, scoring Alex Gonzalez. Ryan Webb came on and walked Martin Prado, to even the score at four runs apiece. When Chipper came to the plate, a routine ground ball to Omar Infante bounced off of his glove and far enough to force a bad throw, scoring pinch runner Antoan Richardson.
Then the Braves were defeated in the ninth after getting the Marlins down to their last strike. Emilio Bonifacio was facing an 0-2 count with two outs and ultimately chopped a ball right to Chipper Jones. Chipper lost the ball in the lights though and Bonifacio reached once the ball skipped past Jones. Omar Infante made up for his fielding blunder in a big way in the next at-bat. After Kimbrel buzzed Infante high and tight, Omar hit a deep fly ball into the left field seats that let the game get away from the Braves for a second straight day.