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game-recap-52810 | May | 2010 Articles

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Game Recap - 5/28/10

Written by Joe Lucia on .

Braves 7 (26-22), Pirates 3 (20-29) WP: Lowe (7-4) LP: Duke (3-5) I guess we should start this recap with the factor that was in play for the entire evening: the rain. Thats the reason this damn recap is up now instead of 12 hours ago...2 long rain delays in this one, and there was no way I was going to brave that second one to get the recap up last night with as tired as I was. Thems the breaks sometimes. The rain...did not effect the Braves though, pounding out 7 runs on 13 hits. Derek Lowe was fantastic in one of his best starts of the year, albeit against an anemic Pirates offense, going 7 strong innings and only allowing 1 run on 4 hits, walking one and striking out 2. Lowe's sinker was working real well too, with 12 groundball outs compared to only 6 in the air. Lowe was efficient too, only throwing 87 pitches in those 7 innings, and making the Pirates look stupid all evening. If this is the Derek Lowe that can come out to play more often, the Braves rotation will be in good shape going into June. His ERA now sits at 4.86, while his FIP is now down to 4.45. Not worthy of $15 million a year...but its not horribly dire like it was earlier in the season, when many fans (myself included) were calling for his head. Offensively, the Braves continued to roll despite AGAIN stranding 9 men on base. The team went 7 for 18 with runners in scoring position (not that its an acquired skill, but it always helps). Backup catcher David Ross got another start and made the most of it, going 3 for 4 with a pair of doubles and 3 RBI, all of which came in the first inning on a double that increased the Braves lead to 4-0 and knocked the Pirates out right off the bat. Chipper Jones was left for dead in a gutter by fans earlier this week, and all he did was go 2 for 5 with 3 RBI. In the past 2 games, he's raised his average by 15 points. Hooray for still small sample sizes and fans jumping the gun with reactions to them! That Heyward kid reached base 4 times in 5 plate appearances, with a pair of hits, a walk, and a hit by pitch. Oh, he also leads the NL in OPS now. The kid is 20, people. We might just not be talking rookie of the year, but MVP at this point. Its amazing, really...consider the fact that last season, Jeff Francoeur and Ryan Church manned right field for the Braves and were terrible. Heyward is just a tad bit of an upgrade over them, right? Nate McLouth pulled an 0-fer tonight, and is 0 for 10 with 5 strikeouts on the week. Thank god we gave up nothing of real value for him...he's been a disaster this season, and Melky Cabrera now only trails him by one point of OPS in the race to mediocrity. Embarrassing, really...his .240 BABIP says things will get better, but I don't know how much longer the Braves can wait. His leash is probably a little longer thanks to Jordan Schafer struggling in Gwinnett, but we'll see how long that lasts. One other note: Martin Prado had 3 more hits to push his NL leading total up to 65, 5 higher than second place Ryan Braun. Worth noting is that his walk rate is only 7.1% and his ISO is .128, with a BABIP of .349. You may be able to sell high on him in fantasy... Today's game starts at 7:05, with Brian Burres starting for the Pirates, taking on Kris Medlen for the Braves. Medlen couldn't get through 6 innings in his start last Sunday against Pittsburgh, and the Braves would like to see that change this week. Minor league transactions of note? Mississippi signed OF Antoan Richardson. Who's that? Not a prospect. But he's started 5 for 9 for Mississippi, so maybe he can provide a little bit of a spark to that offense with Alex Romero now in Gwinnett for the time being. LV Ware got called up to Myrtle Beach from Rome, which once again proves you don't need to be the best player in the world to get a promotion. And thats about all for the past couple of days...Gwinnett's starter this evening is uber-prospect TBA, strikeout whiz Scott Diamond goes for Mississippi, JJ Hoover starts for Myrtle Beach, and former top pick Brett DeVall will go for Rome. DeVall has one hell of an act to follow after the performance of Arodys Vizcaino last night, but we'll touch on that tomorrow. TBA has his work cut out for him too, after the improbably no hitter last night from Todd Redmond...that still makes me chuckle a little bit. I wrote a little bit about that last night, so check it. The game recap for tonight's game WILL be up tonight, unless there are another 3 hours of rain delays. But I'll be up anyway due to the UFC show...hooray for fighting!

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