For the 11th time in 18 games and for the fourth day in a row, the Braves lost. This time, the defeat came at the hands of the Chicago Cubs, who are continuing their run towards the postseason. The home team used a four-run third inning to blaze past the Braves and never looked back after that point as they won 7-1.
The third inning was indeed the turning point of the game, and it coincided with the most controversial moment of the game. Fredi Gonzalez and tonight's home plate umpire Doug Eddings don't exactly have an amicable history, and things reached a boiling point when Fredi strongly and audibly disagreed with the calls that Mike Foltynewicz was getting. As a result, the manager and the home plate umpire got into a shouting match from home plate to the dugout. Fredi got ejected, and the two continued their shouting match up close after Fredi received the hook.
Immediately after the ejection, noted Braves tormentor Chris Coghlan brought in Addison Russell to open the scoring for the Cubs, then Anthony Rizzo launched a three-run homer into the Chicago night sky to make things 4-0.
Chicago never looked back after that. Addison Russell added a solo homer in the fourth inning to make it 5-0. In the next inning, a triple from Coghlan and a double from Miguel Montero made it 7-0 Cubs. All of these runs came with Mike Foltynewicz on the mound. To say that ol' Folty got roughed up tonight would be putting it lightly.
Meanwhile, the Braves offense just could not figure out Jake Arrieta, who gave the Cubs yet another solid start. Arrieta exited the game after pitching six scoreless innings and only giving up four hits. Atlanta didn't score until the eighth inning, which is when Adonis Garcia brought home Nick Markakis with a sac fly. That was far too little and far too late for our Braves, though, as the Cubs sauntered to an easy victory.
Hey, at least the Braves didn't get shut out, right? Hopefully the worst has already come during this series and it'll only get better from here, right? One can only hope.