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Series Recap: Braves vs Padres

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In which I try to come up with various ways to say "dumpster fire"

Denis Poroy

This past weekend the Braves ran their losing streak to 6 games as they were swept by the San Diego Padres. The west coast road trip has been a disaster thus far as the Braves are 0-6 on the trip. They will look to break their losing streak on Tuesday against Felix Hernandez and after they do that I will travel around the world in a weather balloon.

Things got off to as poor a start as possible on Friday night as Mike Minor and the Braves were dominated in a 10-1 loss. The game had all the markings of a team not only getting beaten but who seemed to be coming apart. Minor gave up two home runs to Tommy Medica who is apparently the new Barry Bonds we just hadn't heard of him because he plays in San Diego. The Braves gave up a steal on a play in which the team seemed unaware there was even a player on the bases. David Hale got into some sort of confrontation with Fredi Gonzalez and Jeff Porter. It was bad and the failure of a game proved portentous for the rest of the series.

On Saturday the Braves lost again though they made a game of it losing 3-2 in 12 innings. Ervin Santana continued his good run of strong starts shutting the Padres out for the first six innings before giving up two runs in the 7th. The Braves trailed 2-1 in the top of the 8th but managed to come back and tie the game. With the game tied 2-2 in the 8th and runners on the corners with one out the Braves had a chance to take the lead. But in what was totally fitting with the unending babytown frolics that is the Braves right now Andrelton Simmons ended the threat for Atlanta. Simmons decided on his own to attempt to score Evan Gattis by running an uncalled squeeze play. Gattis being the slowest runner on the team, and unaware the squeeze was on  was thrown out at home.

The comical ineptitude continued into extra innings. In the top of the 12th the Braves loaded the bases with nobody out. It seemed impossible they wouldn't take the lead but the Braves managed to do it anyway. Evan Gattis grounded to third and the throw came home and then to first for a double play. Chris Johnson promptly grounded out to end the threat and the Braves failed to score. The Padres mercifully ended the game in the bottom of the 12th getting a game winning single after Craig Kimbrel walked the bases loaded.

Game three of the series was much like game two with the Braves losing in extra innings and failing spectacularly with no outs and the bases loaded. Aaron Harang had a typical game for him being in trouble constantly but managing to limit the damage. Harang gave up two runs in six innings but he kept the Braves in the game. The Braves tied the game in the 7th inning when Justin Upton walked, Jason Heyward tripled, and Evan Gattis doubled. The Braves would load the bases with nobody out in a tie game. If you have been watching the Braves this year you know where this is going. Emilio Bonifacio struck out looking at a ball that was called a strike anyway and BJ Upton grounded into a double play. The Braves once again couldn't push across the run to break the tie with the bases loaded and zero outs.

Tommy Medica punished the Braves once again with an 8th inning homer to give the Padres the 3-2 lead. Jason Heyward then created a rally almost by himself. Heyward led off the top of the 9th with a double to bring up Gattis. Gattis hit the ball back to the pitcher who tried to throw out Heyward at third. Heyward would have been safe anyway, but the throw got by the third baseman to allow Heyward to score and tie the game.

The Braves managed to force extras once again but once again they never managed to take the lead. In the 10th Venable and Amarista reached via a single and walk respectively. Rene Rivera tried to bunt the runners over but popped the ball up. David Hale just missed catching the ball but it worked out because he was able to throw to third for one out and Johnson threw back to first for the second out as Rivera wasn't running until he saw the ball drop. Hale had a chance to escape the inning but a Cabrera single brought Amarista home to give the Padres the 4-3 win.

The Braves are on a six game losing streak and running out of time to turn things around. They are five back in the loss column to Washington and in danger of falling out of the division race completely.