The Braves put up their highest total runs Monday afternoon with 17 guys crossing the plate. The offense was led by Justin Upton who had two home runs and six RBI’s going 3-3. Upton looked to be in midseason form with his two mammoth shots to left field.
Tyler Pastornicky continued his great spring with three hits, two runs, two RBI’s and two walks. He is now hitting .396 with an on base percentage of .473.
The third base position battle lengthened as Juan Francisco got the start. He went 3-5 with two runs and three RBI’s. He raised his batting average to .353 as he blasted his fifth home run of the season. Chris Johnson came in to replace Freddie Freeman in the 7th inning to pick up a single. Johnson’s batting average is now up to .347.
Dan Uggla still hasn’t caught on this spring as he was the only one in the lineup who went hitless going 0-4 with two strikeouts. His batting average has dropped to a .182.
Atlanta’s firepower had 19 hits but it was the other side of the ball that was a little uncomfortable to see. Kris Medlen was the starter for the Braves on Monday but to say he struggled would be an understatement. Medlen gave up 14 hits and nine earned runs. After the game he said his curveball wasn’t snapping off properly and even told David O’Brien “It was just dog poop”. Medlen now has an ERA of 6.27 this spring.
Eric O’Flaherty threw for the third time this spring, throwing a complete inning with only giving up one hit. Craig Kimbrel followed O’Flaherty with a quick one-two-three in the 7th.
Having an off day on Tuesday, the Braves will play the Pirates on Wednesday with Mike Minor taking the mound. Atlanta will look to continue their offensive outburst while hoping their pitching gets closer to being ready for the season.