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Braves survive late rally, win 3-2

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Guys the Braves beat the Dodgers!

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves made it as painful as possible, allowing the Dodgers to load the bases in the ninth but Craig Kimbrel induced a timely double play to nail down the Braves first win over the Dodgers in 8 games. Ervin Santana was very strong, the bullpen solid, and the offense did just enough to give the Braves a desperately needed win.

Santana's only major trouble came in the second inning when he allowed five hits and two runs. Matt Kemp led off the inning with a double and was brought home immediately by a Carl Crawford single. Juan Uribe smacked a single of his own and a big inning seemed to be in the cards. AJ Ellis helped the Braves out by hitting into a double play which kept Atlanta in the game. Miguel Rojas drove in Crawford with two outs but those two runs would be all LA would get in the inning and in the game. Santana escaped the inning with minimal damage and settled in to cruise control for the rest of his start.

The Braves got one back in their own half of the second. Evan Gattis doubled on another terrible route by Yasiel Puig who has shown poor instincts in center in this series. Chris Johnson bunted Gattis to second and an Andrelton Simmons groundout brought Gattis home. Having a position player bunt over a runner from 2nd to 3rd with no outs is not really optimal strategy but in this case it scored the Braves their first run of the game.

Justin Upton got the Braves going in the bottom of the 4th with a walk. Upton reached third on a Johnson single, and with two outs Simmons poked a soft line drive to right field to score Upton. The game was tied at two without the Braves hitting a ball particularly hard.

Jason Heyward reinserted into the leadoff spot for Atlanta came around to score the go ahead run in the 5th. Heyward snuck a groundball through the middle of the infield and went to second after Freddie Freeman was hit by a pitch. Justin Upton came through with a sharp single to score Heyward and the Braves had a lead they wouldn't give away this time.

Santana aside from his second inning hiccup was in total command. Santana recorded half of his 18 outs with strikeouts and avoided trouble for the most part. He gave way to the bullpen after six innings and David Carpenter and Jordan Walden admirably bridged the gap until Kimbrel took over in the ninth.

Kimbrel wasn't sharp though and insisted on making things interesting. Kimbrel walked the leadoff man and Dee Gordon singled on a bunt to first base. With runners on 1st and 2nd with no outs Kimbrel got a huge strikeout on Puig. It was Puig's fourth strikeout of the game. The Braves then looked a gift horse in the mouth when Adrian Gonzalez singled to left field. Ethier was unsure if Justin Upton would catch the ball and wasn't running until he saw it drop. If Upton had gone to third base he would have had Ethier easily, but instead he threw to second base and failed to get the much faster Gordon. The bases were loaded with one out for Matt Kemp. Luckily Kimbrel came through in the big moment inducing a double play to end the game and secure the Braves win.