With Jason Heyward, B.J. Upton and Freddie Freeman all still dealing with their injuries, Brian McCann came into the game on Friday night knowing he had to step up offensively if the Braves had a shot to win.
In the 6th inning, McCann battled hard with Chicago White Sox’s starting pitcher John Danks fouling off six pitches before launching a 3-2 changeup into Atlanta’s bullpen in right field. This was an epic at-bat that McCann walked away (ran around the bases) victorious. This broke up a 2-2 tie and the Braves never let that lead slip away from them.
McCann spoke after the game “I’ve been feeling good for a while now and I got to swing a little bit over the All-Star break at the game, which was nice. I think it takes every player in baseball four or five innings to get back into the swing of things when you take four or five days off. It was nice to get a win the first game back.”
Tim Hudson got the win on Friday, after not winning a game in June, he now is 3-0 in his three starts in July. Huddy has struggled in Chicago over the years, posting a 3-3 record with a 5.19 ERA in eight career starts. Though, his last win in Chicago came in 2002.
Hudson spoke to the media after the game about not being able to win in Chicago “It’s been awhile since I’ve gotten a win here … about 15 years? I haven’t fared too well here over the years. I don’t think I have a lot of games pitched here, but when I have pitched here, it hasn’t been too pretty at times. It’s nice to finally get in the right column. It was still close. It was never easy, but a win’s a win.”
The plan for Saturday is supposedly Freeman and Heyward will be back in the lineup for starting pitcher Paul Maholm. But on Friday night, McCann was the star and if he continues, that wouldn’t bother me at all.