Braves 4, Tigers 3

Detroit Tigers vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – June 26, 2010 – ESPN.

Kenshin Kawakami won a game! Not that the bullpen made it easy, with a ninth inning that made it look like there was an actual plot to keep him winless. Luckily, the home plate umpire wasn’t in on it.

For six innings, it looked like Kawakami would, as usual, pitch just well enough to lose. He only allowed one run, that coming in the sixth on a walk, a “bunt single” that Kawakami screwed up and should have been a sacrifice, and a wild pitch, allowing the runner to go to third where he could score on a groundout.

Blanco walked leading off the seventh, then was sacrificed to second on a pinch-bunt by Conrad. (It may be NATIONAL LEAGUE BASEBALL but it’s still stupid.) Prado grounded out, then Melky walked. Chipper took a 1-0 pitch deep over the right-centerfield wall to make it 3-1. Just like that, Kawakami was in place to win. He looked even better placed after Hinske (who’d come up empty in a couple of earlier scoring chances) doubled in Glaus from first. Heyward (who has finally admitted that his thumb is a problem and didn’t start) ran for Hinske, and went to third when Yunel just missed his first homer of the season, but was stranded.

For some reason, Billy Wagner was not available today. I don’t know, and the announcers didn’t seem to know either, why that was. Venters had no problems in the eighth, but Saito did in the ninth. The leadoff man lined out, then Cabrera hit a homer to cut it to 4-2. He struck out the next man… then couldn’t get either of the next two, walking both after getting ahead in the count. O’Flaherty came in and had no idea where the ball was going, walking two and making it 4-3. Bobby had no choice but to go to Moylan — because nobody else was left — and the Tigers used Damon to pinch-hit. He went 3-1, then got it to 3-2, then looked like he threw the next pitch well outside… but it was called a strike. Ballgame.

42 thoughts on “Braves 4, Tigers 3”

  1. The Tigers didn’t deserve it anyway. Their great “rally” consisted of nothing more than batters standing motionless in the batters’ box.

  2. Nah, the Atlanta save is when it is a huge lead and an actual non-save situation.

  3. The final pitch wasn’t a strike, but it was closer than it looked. It had a sharp break just before it crossed the plate. A little sad to win that way, but I’m happy for Kawakami finally getting his first win.

  4. FWIW Gameday has the last pitch well outside. Combined with the awkward way McCann received the ball, I have no idea why it was called a strike. Either the ump had somewhere to be or some kind of problem with Johnny Damon.

  5. Living in Michigan I have already received a barrage of crap from Tigers fans regarding the last pitch. Sucks for them… but if you aren’t going to swing sometimes you get screwed.

  6. A sad way to win? Hey, we won!!! a game and a half ahead, and that’s all I care about.

  7. Eric Gregg was brought up in the crowd I was watching the game with, but here’s the thing- if you (in, I’m assuming, a night that’ll end with some slit wrists) choose to watch that game again, it’s way way way worse. Than any strike call you’ve probably seen since.

    We’re talking Frank Drebin territory. It’s amazing. He’s almost calling strikes before the pitch even crosses the plate.

  8. @14: Celeb gossip–he’s got special extensions typically used for handicapped drivers.

    Tigers fans are ” rel=”nofollow”>doing their due diligence.

  9. @15

    LOL! Talking about Frank Drebin as the umpire always makes me laugh.

    This game suggests that the Braves are in deep trouble if Wagner goes down.

  10. I’m bummed about the U.S. loss to Ghana.

    But I’m elated about the Braves. Zombie Chipper has been getting it done the past month or so. I’m just hoping that Heyward is ok.

  11. The Detroit papers are going to whine about the call tomorrow but I will read each article with a smile on my face

  12. More details from DOB on Wag:

    “Wagner’s pitched with a sore ankle for about 10 days, and today it was too sore for him to pitch without changing delivery. Wagner tried to warm up in bottom of 8th after taping it more than usual, but it was too sore. He got cortisone shot after game. Wagner said he should be good to go as soon as tomorrow, though he’ll have to see how if feels when he gets here.”

  13. There’s a line on an article on the Braves site that says if Ross was unavailable to catch, that Conrad and Yunel are backup options. Can you imagine Yunel behind the plate?

  14. It’s certainly encouraging when our 38-year old zombie third baseman can hit a 100-mph fastball out of the ballpark.

  15. Baseball Tonight just did a great demo of the last pitch from Moylan. Thier take: The ump’s position over Mac’s right shoulder obscured the outside corner, and that, coupled with Mac’s backhanded catch ‘convinced’ the ump that the ball caught the corner.

    Wow, I just saw real analysis on ESPN that didn’t relate to a New Boston Yankee Sox game.

  16. By the way, after watching the World Cup, I have resolved that I won’t complain quite as loudly about Yunel’s frosted tips. Switzerland’s ” rel=”nofollow”>Valon Behrami, the guy who got a bogus red card, might have the most infuriating hair on a man that I’ve ever seen. He has frosted tips on his frosted tips. It is hard for me to look at that photo without wanting to punch him.

  17. Gotta give it to my Clemson boys…they took a very mediocre team to the end of the CWS.

    Tip o’ the hat to South Carolina…they were the better team and they played like it.

    Back to the Braves: sheesh…what a crappy 9th. But still in first. Suck it Mets, Phils, Fish, and Strasburg.

  18. chipper’s last 10:
    14/36 .389 avg 6runs 2hr 10 rbi 5bb 2sb .611 slg 1.075 ops

    bmac’s last 10:
    8/33 .242 avg 5runs 3hr 4rbi 4bb 1sb .576 slg .900 ops

    with troy and heyward both struggling to stay 100%, we’re going to need bmac and chipper to stay hot.

  19. Just as long as someone drives in the winning runs, everyone else can pull an 0-fer for all I care. Someone has to step up each day.

  20. Wow, would that have been a devastating one to lose. Walking 5 straight? Yeesh. The pitch was well outside, it was a horrible call. But I’m very, very glad we got it. And hey, the ump missed a high strike call earlier against some Tiger hitter, so that makes it even, right?

    FWIW, helluvan AB by Inge to force the walk from KK.

  21. @25
    No, but I can imagine Conrad doing it with no mitt or mask and being good at it.

    I heard that Conrad once beat Paul Bunyan at being gritty.

  22. The umpire was squeezing Saito and O’Flaherty a bit. Might have been a make up call. Was at the game, and got to meet ububba. He’s a good man.

  23. I loved catching in High School, but I live in FL so it was always better to play 1st without all that gear on. I couldnt imagine Yunel back there, but Conrad is sort of built like a catcher. It would very interesting to watch!

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