After last Sunday’s loss to the Rays, I mentioned that it was the first non-competitive loss suffered by the Braves since June 11. Well, this was the first non-competitive loss since…last Sunday. It’s also the first series the Braves have lost since the end of May in Oakland.
Things went sour pretty quickly today, as starter Kolby Allard allowed 4 second-inning runs before leaving with a shoulder issue that didn’t sound especially encouraging (they were talking about tingling or numbness in his fingers after throwing a pitch). He allowed seven hits over his 1.2 innings.
Meanwhile the Atlanta offense didn’t do much against Dylan Cease and those that followed him, scoring just a single run on five hits.
There’s honestly not much to say about this crappy game. The injury to Allard and the fact that Michael Soroka pitched three innings in relief were the two most notable things about it. Allard seemingly being a half-step ahead of Soroka in the pecking order the last couple of weeks remains a bit perplexing to me, I must admit. It would’ve presented questions about what the plans for Soroka were, but with the Allard injury, I don’t guess it’s much of a question now. Soroka was fine over his three innings, giving up a couple runs on three hits, one of which was a two-run homer, while striking out three.
The whole situation just adds to the fact that the starting rotation continues to be in flux. We’re now down to four starters, which is OK at the moment with an off day coming tomorrow. You’ve got Max Fried rehabbing and primed to make a return before long, and you’ve got Jared Shuster on the 40-man. If Soroka continues to be kind of shaky and Fried has either a setback or troubles with ineffectiveness, I think a trade for a starter at the deadline becomes something of a necessity. It could just as easily turn out that both comebacks go very well and there’s no problem at all. It’ll be interesting to see what happens.
Also, Charlie Culberson actually got in a game
The other thing of some note that happened in this game is that Charlie Culberson actually got to pinch-hit in the ninth inning. It was his first appearance in a game this year, despite being on the team for most of the last two months. And he actually collected an infield hit! Way to go, Charlie!