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Early Runs the Difference as Braves Blank Nats, 2-0

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The pitching stole the show as the Braves won their penultimate series of 2015.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta pitching hasn't been any good this year, but that didn't stop the unlikely quartet of Williams Perez, Peter Moylan, Edwin Jackson, and Arodys Vizcaino from shutting down the Nats on a warm Wednesday night in Atlanta. The deciding runs scored fairly early in this one, as AJ Pierzynski delivered an RBI single in the first and Michael Bourn did the same in the second to push the only two runs of the game across.

The offense was pretty quiet in general, with just 12 hits and three extra-base hits (all doubles) between the two NL East non-contenders. Jordan Zimmermann pitched fairly well but still allowed those two runs to a dreadful Braves offense, and managed to punch out just one hitter. His mound opponent, Williams Perez, did what he seems to do best: Perez scattered nine baserunners, including three walks and two doubles, but kept Washington off the scoreboard. The Braves bullpen also pulled off a rare feat in that it pitched three baserunner-less innings. I'm not sure how often that's happened this season, but probably not that often, and perhaps not at all since Jason Grilli and Jim Johnson stopped appearing in games. For his part, Perez looked pretty good, eliciting ten grounders to just two fly balls and mostly avoiding bat barrels handily.

A special shoutout for this game goes to Andrelton Simmons, who was kind of everywhere. He was the only Brave with two hits, the only Brave to reach base twice, and was involved in ten different batted ball plays on which an out was recorded. He also initiated the biggest play of the game, a 6-5-3 double play to hamstring a Nationals rally that led to two guys on base with none out in the second. (Perez would walk the 8th-place hitter, Michael Taylor, and get Jordan Zimmermann to ground out to Simmons to end the threat.)

The Braves go for the meaningless-yet-still-maybe-delicious-but-oh-wait-won't-someone-think-of-the-draft-pick sweep tomorrow night.