– MLB – Recap – Braves at Cubs – 07/11/2003

Eight wins in a row, 29 games over .500, a couple more homers… Jeez, they’re hitting well right now. The Braves have scored at least five runs in seven of the eight wins, averaging 7 1/4 runs a game. If you’ve forgotten, this comes on the heels of a stretch in which they were scoring only one or two runs a game, highlighted by the 20-1 disaster in Florida.

Vinny’s in one of his hot streaks, hitting a two-run homer and later singling in two more. Andruw, hitting cleanup with Sheffield not in the lineup (I don’t know why we were exposed to the Darren Bragg Experience) had two hits, including a homer. And Mike Hampton, who hasn’t been hitting well for him, hit a triple to drive in two.

On viewing the highlights, I’ll retract the “punk”, but Mark Prior is still an idiot. He simply ignored Marcus, who was trying to field a grounder, and bowled him over. Just idiotic, bad baseball. Marcus was hit in the head by Prior’s knee and suffered a concussion. It would have served Prior right if he’d damaged that $20 million arm of his, but he seems to have shaken it off after holding his shoulder.

Bobby probably stayed with Hampton too long, and that (combined with his inexplicable dedication to Kevin Gryboski) let the Cubs make the game interesting late. Hampton was charged with all five runs, but had a good start — seven innings, three runs — going. But (maybe trying to get another CG) Hampton started the eighth and let two men reach, then Gryboski came in to give up a double to score them. The Cubs actually had the tying run at the plate but Gryboski managed to escape without further harm. In the end, Hampton allowed 11 hits and 3 walks, and two Sosa homers. For him, the homers are the problem, but who hasn’t allowed a few to Sammy in their time?