The Diamondbacks had another shot at fourth place tonight with a win and a Rockies loss. Colorado held up their end of the deal, but the D-backs just don't seem to want to give up that coveted last place title as they lost their 52nd game of the year tonight.
B.J. Upton led off the Braves first with a single to left, promptly stole second, and was then moved to third on a sacrifice by Andrelton Simmons. In a flurry of beautiful offense, three-hole hitter -- and known D-backs killer -- Freddie Freeman knocked Upton home with a single of his own to give Atlanta an early lead. Justin Upton then doubled down the left field line, advancing Freeman to third, where he'd eventually be hit home on a ground out from Jason Heyward. Josh Collmenter got Chris Johnson to fly out, but not before the damage was done, and Ervin Santana strode out to the mound in the second with a two-run lead.
Martin Prado led the second off with a single and advanced to third on two straight groundouts. Luckily for the D-backs, with Didi Gregorious at the plate, Santana dialed up a wild pitch that bounced off the chest pad of Gerald Laird and scooted far enough to allow Prado to score from third and reduce the lead by one.
The Braves picked up where they left off and started the scoring train again. Before Josh Collmenter knew it, Atlanta had loaded the bases up for Andrelton Simmons who singled to left to bring home the third run of the day. With the help of some awful umpiring, Atlanta added another on a questionable Justin Upton walk. With a 2-2 count, Collmenter threw an excellent changeup in the dirt and induced a half swing from Upton that certainly looked as though the bat crossed the plate, but no dice for Arizona. And on the 3-2 count, Collmenter threw a belt high fastball right in the heart of the plate that was called ball four to score Santana from third. Just like that, the Braves extended their lead to three.
After that barrage of scoring, Collmenter calmed down and settled in to his night. It was a shaky start to start out, giving up seven hits and four runs over the first two, but he cruised through the sixth with four scoreless. Kirk Gibson pulled the D-backs right-hander in the seventh after a Simmons double off the wall in right field. Oliver Perez got the call with the heart of the order due up for Atlanta. Freddie Freeman, similar to so many times before, singled in Simmons for yet another RBI against Arizona. Braves led 5-1 at that point.
Ervin Santana really only made one major mistake all night: the wild pitch in the second that scored Prado. From there on out, he dominated the D-backs offense up until the eighth inning when Gregorious and Ender Inciarte both singled off him, provoking a pitching change for the Braves. David Peralta then hit into what should have been a double play, but thanks to a poor throw from Simmons, he was safe at first and Gregorious scored from third. Goldschmidt stepped up and delivered a double to give Miguel Montero an opportunity to bring the D-backs within one or tied with one swing of the bat. But Miggy struck out to end the inning.
There’d be no…..fireworks late in this game. Craig Kimbrell came on in the ninth and closed it out.
It's a 1:10 start tomorrow in Atlanta. Mike Bolsinger faces off against Aaron Harang.
GDT: Congrats to JoeCB1991.
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