The Atlanta Braves heading into Sunday afternoons game with an attempt to win the series against the hot hitting Arizona D-Backs. But the Braves came up one run shy to lose the game 6-5 and the series 2-1.
Aaron Harang started the game on the bump for the Braves and actually didn’t pitch that bad. He gave up many walks, six base on balls, but only four hits and three earned runs. He struck out four hitters and pitched into the 7th inning….but that’s where it all went down hill for the Braves.
Heading into the 7th inning, the Braves were leading 2-0 off the bat of Justin Upton and his two run homer to left field in the 6th inning. Then, the wheels fell off from Atlanta and just couldn’t get out of the 7th inning.
“I had to run him back out there,” Fredi Gonzalez said about Aaron Harang. He had a two run lead and a shutout going and we ran him back out there to get us through the 7th inning somehow. He had some walks but you felt comfortable that he could maneuver through the lineup. That 7th inning just unraveled on us, we just couldn’t get out of that inning.”
With failing to win the series and only taking one game from the last place D-Backs, the Braves are now tied with the Miami Marlins and Washington Nationals in the NL East race.
Harang, now 4-5 for the 2014 season and has a a 3.33 ERA, threw 109 pitches on Sunday and 100 heading into the 7th inning. Fredi wanted to give him the chance to get through another inning and save his bullpen but it just didn’t work out as Aaron looked gassed.
“I didn’t feel sharp with all my pitches but made pitches when I needed to and got some key double plays when I needed to,” Harang said. “Pitching in stressful situations kind of wore me out and I wasn’t able to execute in the 7th inning.”
When asked what he was thinking walking back out there for the 7th inning…
“I felt good heading out there but obviously I wasn’t as sharp,” Harang said.
The Braves did fight back after the 7th inning but fell one run short. The Braves scored two runs in the 8th inning when Freddie Freeman homered to center and Tommy La Stella singled in Justin Upton and Ramiro Pena hit a long home run in the 9th inning to make the game 6-5 with no out and the top of the order coming up. Jason Heyward grounded out, B.J. Upton swung on the first pitch to ground out to short and Freeman struck out to end the game.
“The effort out of the guys after the 7th inning when they scored six runs…most teams would roll over there and we didn’t,” Fredi said after the game. “We came back and made it a one run game with the top of the order up. I’m really proud of our guys for the fight that was left after that 7th inning, we have to hang our hats on that. We just came up short.”
Tags: Atlanta Braves