cards 3, braves 2
the cards won this one through a heavy dose of luck. the newest contribution of the braves' farm system to excellent starting pitching, brandon beachy, was dominating the game pretty thoroughly most of the way. jake westbrook was looking eminently hittable, giving up too many walks (3), but making it through 6 innings with only 2 runs allowed. he's still the great groundball pitcher he's always been - 10 GO to 4 FO - but i wish he'd cut back on the walks.
beachy was excellent, allowing only a single hit through the end of the seventh. only in the eighth did he get in any trouble. the cards capitalized on a leadoff double from daniel descalso (?) and tyler greene's first walk of the year (?!?). after a sac bunt from punto, david freese drove both runners in on a 2-out single off of reliever johnny venters, tying the game at 2 all.
the ninth led off with a single from matt holliday. after colby rasmus struck out, gerald laird (!!!?!!?!!?!) hit a triple, giving the cards the lead.
the bullpen held together. boggs pitched an uneventful seventh inning. batista took over in the eighth allowing a double and an intentional walk, before escaping the inning unscathed.
salas was given the responsibility in the ninth. he got two strikeouts, the second of which on a close called third strike engendered some jawing betwixt alex gonzalez and fredi gonzalez, leading to their ejections. salas then walked nate mclouth but got the last out on a fly ball from eric hinske. the cards walked away winners again.
it was interesting to see the ordering of relievers. surely if boggs is the closer, tony would not have gone to him to start the seventh, facing the bottom of the order. it is a little bit surprising to me that tony would officially label him the closer, then cut him loose so quick. it would have been better, i would think, not to label anybody. i don't disagree with the decision to let salas in the ninth. on the contrary, salas is in there with the best of the relievers in the pen. i am sure that both of them will get more save opportunities.
what is happening in the world of "square body type" ballplayers? azru pointed out the odd coincidence of brett wallace stealing a base and non-jeans model prospect matt adams hitting his first ever professional ball triple in a springfield game over at future redbirds. now, we have gerald laird hitting a triple off the braves closer? if you'll excuse me, i have to go check to make sure i have enough canned goods, batteries, and bottled water in my basement for the upcoming cataclysm.