– MLB – Recap – Pirates at Braves – 09/02/2002

The Braves won again, beating the Pirates 5-1 behind Greg Maddux. Chipper homered and Andruw had two hits, one a double to drive in two. Even Vinny had two hits. Maddux was the star, singling and scoring a run and pitching eight more good innings against the Pirates, allowing only one solo homer. He had seven strikeouts as well; if he’s getting those he should be in good shape.

I’m going to get back on my soapbox here and complain about the AP story, which centers around Maddux “winning for the first time in a month”. He’d been pitching well, and had his best outing of the year in his last start against these same Pirates, but since he didn’t “win” they make it seem like he’s been in some sort of slump when he hasn’t. During his “slump” he had an ERA a smidgen over 3. But apparently he’s supposed to score and drive in enough runs to win as well. Like he did today when he scored the Braves’ first run.

Julio Franco played first base, scoring a run on one hit. Why he played against a righthander for the second straight game is beyond me. I honestly don’t understand Bobby’s usage patterns. Keith Lockhart, who still isn’t getting enough abuse here, was 0-4 and committed another terrible error. If Bobby really thinks that Lockhart is more reliable at second than Giles or DeRosa, then you can make a case for playing him. But if he keeps making dumb errors how can you justify it?