There are few series that go so well. Other than an early 5-run deficit on Monday, the Braves seemed to have the entire series under control. The Rockies held a small lead on Tuesday as well, but it didn't last long. The next two games were never in doubt.
The offense was the main reason. Here's how the major players fared.
- Jason Heyward - 7-for-16, 2 BB, HR
- Justin Upton - 8-for-18, BB, 2 2B, 2 HR
- Freddie Freeman - 7-for-17, 2 BB, 2 HR
- Evan Gattis - 3-for-19 (someone had to get out)
- Brian McCann - 3-for-11, 3 BB, 2 HR
- Chris Johnson - 9-for-19, BB, 2B
- Dan Uggla - 2-for-17, 2 BB (again, someone had to get out)
- Andrelton Simmons - 7-for-16, 2 2B, 3B
In other words, the Braves hit.
On the mound, the Braves did well with the notable exception of a poor season debut by Brandon Beachy. As we said when it happened, it's not really shocking that it happened. He's still essentially in late Spring Training mode, and he's still figuring out how his elbow will respond. The nice thing was that he sat 92-93, and he at least flashed - showed the ability to throw good pitches but not with consistency - the ability to throw good secondary pitches. The command and consistency will take some time. Luckily, the Braves have a 11.5 game lead.
The rest of the staff did well. Alex Wood rebounded from a rough first few innings to go seven strong innings for his first career MLB win - the value of wins notwithstanding, it's a moment of celebrating just how far he's come in his baseball-playing life. Mike Minor was masterful on Wednesday, and he might have gone another inning if the game wasn't so ridiculous by then. And Julio Teheran rebounded from massive pitch counts in the first couple innings to have at least a stellar five innings, if nothing else.
The bullpen did a pretty solid job in this series - 14.1 IP, 3 ER, 11 K, 3 BB. Monday was the key night as they saved the game from getting completely out of hand, but they were on mop-up duty for the rest of the series. Craig Kimbrel never made an appearance.
Four-game sweeps are always awesome.