It was another rough day for the Braves, losing 6-2 to the New York Yankees, while also learning the diagnosis of Brandon Beachy‘s elbow. The preliminary reports of his MRI show a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament, usually a cause for Tommy John surgery. Beachy will see Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion, but it looks like the league leader in ERA will be out for the next calendar year.
As far as tonight’s game goes, things couldn’t have started much better. Michael Bourn led off with a triple, coming in to score on a Martin Prado groundout. The Braves also used three hits in the fifth, resulting in Jason Heyward scoring on Bourn’s single. With a 2-0 lead on CC Sabathia and Mike Minor facing the minimum through the first four innings, the Braves had a 70% chance of winning the game.
The tables turned really quickly. Russell Martin drove in a run with a double and Derek Jeter drove in two with a signature chopper up the middle, giving the Yankees a 3-2 lead after the fifth. After that point, the Braves only managed one baserunner off Sabathia, the second hit of the night for David Ross. Another Jeter RBI single, along with home runs by Mark Teixeira and Robinson Cano, extended the lead to 6-2. Sabathia struck out Heyward for the third time to painfully finish the game.
Sabathia was stellar tonight, only allowing two line drives and three flyballs to the outfield. Limiting the Braves to one walk and using his slurve to get ten strikeouts, he posted a 1.15 FIP and 1.95 xFIP, while that xFIP number should be lower with the 2 infield popups out of the five flyballs. Braves pitchers also had ten strikeouts, but they put four free runners on and couldn’t keep the ball in the park, posting a 5.29 FIP and 3.29 xFIP.
Between the Beachy news and the dwindling offense, things are looking bad for the streaky Braves. If Freddie Freeman can return and the last two stalwarts in the rotation can come through, the series can still be had. With that being said, this has been a ridiculous interleague schedule, leaving the team with less margin of error once they return to divisional games. It will be tough to top the consistent Nationals starting pitching, leaving Atlanta with wild-card hopes.