Gordon Beckham thought he was going to be the hero Wednesday night, after hitting a pinch-hit home run in the sixth inning to give the Braves a 2-1 lead. However, the Brewers would bounce back later in the game against Atlanta's bullpen to take the series with a 3-2 victory in 13 innings.
Mike Foltynewicz had a much better outing than his last time on the mound, as he managed to hold the Brewers to just one run over 5.2 innings of work. He racked up seven strikeouts, with six of those strikeouts coming on fastballs that were 96 miles per hour or better.
He'll still need to work on being more efficient and limiting baserunners though, as he issued four free passes and threw 104 pitches — 63 of which were strikes.
And while Folty shut down several batters with his fastball throughout the game, both of the doubles he issued came off of the pitch as well with Jonathan Villar in the third inning and Ryan Braun in the sixth. Until he's able to tighten up the command or add a consistently located fastball, Foltynewicz might be working with runners on base quite a bit.
Fortunately tonight though, he was able to fan some batters, get out of a couple jams and limit the damage.
Unfortunately tonight though, Bud Norris couldn't do the same.
The bullpen did just fine through the seventh inning, with Eric O'Flaherty, Jason Grilli and Hunter Cervenka combining to throw 1.1 shutout innings — even if Grilli made things interesting with back-to-back walks after retiring his first two batters in the seventh.
With the eighth inning though, came Norris who started the frame off admirable enough by whiffing Braun on an 87-mph slider. Things spun out of control quickly after that though, with Jonathan Lucroy singling on the second pitch he saw and Chris Carter driving the second pitch he saw to tie the game 2-2 and spoil the start for the second straight day.
The Braves got a chance to walk-off after Arodys Vizcaino did his best Craig Kimbrel impression and struck out the side in the top of the ninth — to improve his K/9 to 13.27 on the season and lower his ERA to 1.37 — but you knew it wasn't going to be that easy.
Mallex Smith had a great at-bat to start the frame, working from behind 0-2 to find a full count before taking what was certainly a ball, but was in reality called strike three. Following that, Ender Inciarte — who had been perfect up to this point with a single and three walks — and Chase d'Arnoud flied out to end the ninth and send the game to extras.
Four innings later and the Brewers were threatening with the bases loaded and no outs with Casey Kelly facing Martin Maldonado and pushing 70 pitches. Kelly managed to get Maldonado to ground into a fielder's choice that forced an out at the plate, but Jonathan Villar singled to left field and drove in one run immediately thereafter.
In typical Braves fashion, the offense was silent in response, which speaks more to this game than some, perhaps, questionable bullpen management and the fact that Kelly pitched admirably for much longer than you would like to see him go. Fun Fact: The Braves are now 2-7 this season in extra-inning games. Adding on to that, the Braves have as many extra-inning victories as they do Turner Field victories!
Carlos Torres, one of the many relievers who came to camp with Atlanta, gets the save as the Braves fall to 2-19 at Turner Field— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) May 26, 2016
It's tough to win games when your team can't score more than two runs in 13 innings, and we've had to see that type of performance a lot this season. Our good friends over at Reddit summed it up nicely with this tweet:
Freeman 0-6— Braves Reddit (@BravesReddit) May 26, 2016
The Brewers take this series and will go for the sweep tomorrow at 7:10 p.m. with Matt Wisler facing Wily Peralta.
Hopefully Wisler takes some extra BP.