The Atlanta Braves combined to score 17 runs in their two series this week against the Mets and Marlins. They've now scored 17 runs in their last two games against the Astros. Talk about a change of events.
Mike Minor pitched six strong innings and allowed two runs, both of which came in the first inning. He settled down nicely and gave up just one hit and two walks after nearly imploding to start out the game. He struck out four Astros hitters on the night. Jordan Lyles, a rookie making his third start of the season, pitched 6.1 strong innings for Houston and allowed eight hits and two walks, though he managed to allow just two runs. Lyles struck out five batters on the night.
The Astros got on the scoreboard in the first inning and did so on three consecutive hits. Michael Bourn tripled, Hunter Pence doubled and Carlos Lee doubled as well to give Houston a 2-0 lead. The Braves led off both the first and second innings with back-to-back hits, but the club was unable to cash in either time.
Atlanta finally got on the scoreboard in the third inning. Dan Uggla walked and Chipper Jones drove him in with a 2-out double to the left field gap. Eric Hinske then tied the game up in the following inning with a solo home run down the right field line.
A pitcher's duel ensued after the home run and the score remained tied until Brian McCann came up with the biggest hit of the night in the tenth inning. After a Jordan Schafer single and Dan Uggla walk, "Heap" hit a monster 3-run homer to the right field seats to give the Braves a lead they would not relinquish. Eric Hinske added an insurance run by driving in Chipper Jones to give the Braves a 6-2 lead.
Craig Kimbrel came in to close out the game and recorded the final three outs despite allowing a meaningless run to cross the plate. Braves win 6-3. With the win, Atlanta has now won five straight games and remain just two games back of the Phillies.
Brian McCann's 3-run homer drove in the 500th RBI of his career.
Dan Uggla, who entered the game with the lowest batting average and on-base percentage in baseball, had two hits and walked twice.
Cory Gearrin was sent down to Triple-A Gwinnett before the game in order to make room for Minor. He'll likely re-join the club in a few weeks.
The Braves will go for a series win and their sixth straight victory tomorrow afternoon. It'll be Tommy Hanson against Brett Meyers. First pitch is at 2:05EDT.