Jul 19, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez (10) slides safely into home plate against Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann (16) during the third inning at U.S. Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Braves 7/20

In clutch spot, Braves can rely on McCann

MLB.com

CHICAGO — It was a classic at-bat, and Brian McCann came out the winner on Friday night in a duel with John Danks that wound up keying a win for the Braves to start the season’s second half on the right note.

McCann fouled off six pitches against the White Sox left-handed starter in the sixth inning before launching a 3-2 changeup into the Braves’ bullpen in right field to break a 2-2 tie.

 

Braves quotes after Friday’s win at ChiSox

AJC.com (Subscriber Content)

FREDI GONZALEZ

On Hudson

Huddy did a terrific job. He really did. We got some timely hits. The three-run homer (by McCann). The two-run homer by Simmons to put us on the board. And then the nice at-bat by Chris Johnson to get us that extra run in the ninth inning. That’s always good.

On Chris Johnson

He gives you really good at-bats. His last one to add on a run in the ninth inning was a big one.

Simmons has given you more than just spectacular defense, lately he’s hit some homers and driven in runs?

Yeah, but you know what, how about some of the plays that he’s made? People always want more. I don’t know what he’s hitting, but his RBIs and his hits and batting average, for me, it’s in his glove. And whatever he gives us offensively, it’s a bonus.

BRIAN McCANN

On Simmons

I don’t know if there’s another shortstop in baseball that makes that play up the middle that he made on Beckham. He made it look so easy. But from my angle, there’s not many guys that can get that ball. What he does with the bat, you take it as a bonus, and he’s got nine home runs. He’s hitting .250, getting some huge hits for us. He’s been huge for us.

On Hudson

I thought he pitched great tonight. His sinker was really darting down in the zone. He was working his four-seamer up. His curveball, I thought, was the best it’s been in a while. So, when he can elevate, when he can pitch north and south (in the strike zone), he’s really good.

TIM HUDSON

On pitching so well after giving up the lead on two-run double in third

We played some great defense behind me, had some really great plays. I was able to make some pitches, and we got the three-run lead there. Makes my job easier. I’ve said before, when you get a little lead like that, I was able to be more aggressive.

On getting his first win at U.S. Cellular

It’s been a while since I had a win here. About 15 years? (laughter) Yeah, you know what, man. I haven’t fared too well here over the years. I don’t think I’ve had a lot of games pitched here (0-3 in five before tonight), 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’s never easy. But a win’s a win.

 

Home of baseball legend burglarized

Chicago Tribune

ATLANTA — While baseball legend Hank Aaron and his wife were away, burglars forced their way into the couple’s southwest Atlanta home, stealing jewelry and two BMWs, police said Friday.  Aaron, 79, missed a call from his alarm company Sunday night and asked a neighbor to check his house Monday morning, according to an Atlanta police report obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  The neighbor saw a broken window at Aaron’s house and called police. Responding officers arrived to find parts of the house ransacked and two BMWs missing from the garage, the police report states.Shortly before 11 a.m. Monday, officers found a silver BMW belonging to Aaron a short distance away on Landrum Drive, the report states. Investigators were able to lift fingerprints from the car.

 

Braves Trade Rumors: Pitchers on Atlanta’s Radar as Trade Deadline Approaches

Bleacher Report

Entering the second half of the season, the Atlanta Braves are 54-41 and in complete control of the National League East division. They have an elite bullpen, an improving starting pitching staff and a managerial staff that’s earning constant praise.

Even with their strong team, however, the Braves are looking to acquire more arms—so who is on their radar?

 

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