With Ryan Doumit behind the plate, who's typically not known for his fielding abilities, the Mets took advantage and stole five bases total in their 6-4 series win last night. David Hale picked up his first loss of the season and had a rough time with Eric Young Jr., who he failed to get out in all tree at bats. The Braves (5-4) have allowed a league high 13 stolen bases this season.
Chipper didn't hold back from sharing with DOB what Freddie Freeman had to say to his former teammate on the other corner of the infield. Not so many pitchers can stop the 24-year old first baseman who is fifth in the National League with a ..419 batting average. He has 10 hits in his last 22 at-bats and leads the team this season with a .514 OBP. Everything he hits is a line drive.
The month of April has treated Justin Upton well in his Atlanta Braves career, as he has now launched 14 home runs in 125 at-bats in the first full month of the season. He also was just two feet shy of breaking an all-time record for longest home run hit at Turner Field, as he hit a 477-foot tape measure shot off of Jenrry Mejia in the third inning. The ball carried over 30 rows and over the exit tunnel in section 140. A mammoth blast indeed for J-Up who had three hits and three RBIs in the game and rose his average to .265 (9-for-34).
B.J. Upton's struggles have once again been well documented to begin his second season in Braves Country. The key for him is to not let it go to his head like last season. Chipper Jones who was in attendance for his first game of the season was on the field in BP with him and gave him some pointers. He noticed that Bossman Jr. still has a hinge at the top of his swing that is slowing down his bat. The key to fixing it is for him to bring his bat around his head all the way back before he swings to keep a level swing and get quicker through the zone. In the last game of the series with the Mets he went 1-for-4 and had a triple. He was very receptive to the future third baseman hopeful first ballot Hall of Famer. See it and whale on it B.J..
Despite taking batting practice before the game Andrelton Simmons sat out of the series finale due to a jammed right wrist. The injury appears to be minor and skipper Fredi Gonzalez expects him to be back at some point in the Nationals series. Ramiro Pena received the start at shortstop last night and had one hit in four plate appearances.
Jason Heyward went through one of the worst stretches of his career before his three-hit game on Wednesday night against the Mets to break out of his 0-for-22 stretch. He realizes what he can do at the plate and says it is just a matter of getting more reps in and letting everything fall into place. So far this season he has hit two home runs and stolen two bases as well.
The so-called ace of the Atlanta pitching staff will take to the hill tonight and look to silence the much hated Washington Nationals. For the second straight weekend the Braves will look to beat them in a three game series. Teheran has looked sharp in his first two starts and is 1-1 with a 2.77 ERA. His fastball has yet to reach the speed we saw in Spring Training of sitting around 93-95 mph, but there's a chance he could jump it up there tonight in his first start this season at home.
LEAGUE WIDE NEWS
Michael Pineda picked up his first MLB win since 2011 on Thursday night, but did so in eyebrow raising fashion. For the first three innings he pitched with a sticky brownish substance on his right palm, but later said that it was just dirt and sweat. However, magically in the fifth inning the substance disappeared. The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry always has something funky to it.
The Oakland Athletics didn't hesitate to make the move after Jim Johnson struggled to begin the season in the 9th inning role. This is rather surprising how fast he has declined, as he had tied Craig Kimbrel for the MLB lead in saves last season with 50. It will now be a closer by committee situation for manager Bob Melvin.
Apparently the only team that can beat the Milwaukee Brewers is the Atlanta Braves. Since losing two out of three to the so called 'Beasts of the East', the Brew Crew have won six straight games and their offense has looked scary good. They are second in the NL with a .284 team batting average and are led by the flashy Carlos Gomez with a .390 mark.