The Braves took game two from the Marlins tonight in a game that was reminiscent of last night's performance. Tim Hudson started shaky but finished strong, but, unlike last night, the Braves offense took advantage of wild pitching and some bad defense from the Marlins to take the lead and hold on for the win.
Atlanta stuck first in the top of the first inning. Michael Bourn led off the game with a walk, bringing Martin Prado to the plate. Prado hit a sharp grounder to Hanley Ramirez (who was playing his first game in 5 days) that looked like it could have been a double play. But Hanley booted the ball into left field, and the speedy Bourn ended up on third. Jason Heyward brought home Bourn with a sacrifice fly to give the Braves a 1-0 lead.
The lead was short-lived, as Tim Hudson encountered first inning trouble as well. After a bunt hit, a grounder up the middle, and a walk, the bases were loaded with two outs for Ramirez. Hanley attoned for his error by smacking a line drive to center. Greg Dobbs scored from third, but Bourn threw out Justin Ruggiano at the plate trying to score from second. It was a really close play, and the Braves may have gotten a good call from (surprise!) Laz Diaz, who was tonight's home plate umpire.
Hudson ran into more two-out trouble in the second, giving up a mammoth 2-run homer to Jose Reyes that was just fair down the right field line. Reyes' blast made it 3-1.
Atlanta would get one back in the third though, when Tim Hudson led off the inning with a single. Micheal Bourn followed with a deep fly to center, just missing a homer. Martin Prado drew a walk, Heyward struck out, and Chipper would single to load the bases for Freddie Freeman. After working the count full, Freeman drew a walk to score a run and cut the Marlins' lead to 3-2.
Atlanta knotted the score at 3-3 the next inning. After singles from David Ross, Paul Janish, and Bourn loaded the bases, Prado brought home the tying run with a one-out sacrifice fly.
After his rough first two innings, Tim Hudson found his groove, retiring 16 batters in a row after Reyes' homer.
In the 7th, some more suspect defense would give the Braves the lead for good. With Wade Leblanc pitching, Prado smoked a ball to the gap in right centerfield. Greg Dobbs took a terrible route to the ball, and saw it sail just out of his reach. Prado made it all the way to third with a leadoff triple. Jason Heyward wasted no time getting him in, taking a 1-1 fastball from a tough lefty and rifling it into right-center for the game-winning RBI single.
Eric O'Flaherty pitched around a two-out single to work a scoreless 8th, and Craig Kimbrel did what he does best, throwing a 1-2-3 ninth inning, including a nasty full count pitch to Hanley Ramirez to end the game.
Atlanta looks to take the series tomorrow as Tommy Hanson goes against Ricky Nolasco. First pitch is scheduled for 12:40 p.m. EST.