A long west coast road trip came to an end for the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday with a 4-1 loss to the San Francisco Giants.
Charlie Morton’s afternoon kicked off hitting leadoff man LaMonte Wade Jr. with a 2-2 pitch. Morton recovered and retired the next three batters in a row, including a few strikeouts. He retired the first two batters he faced in the second before running into problems again. JD Davis singled and advanced to second base on a walk by Willie Calhoun. That proved costly, as Austin Wynns followed with a single to the right that scored Davis and gave the Giants an 1-0 lead.
The Braves answered back quickly in the third. Vaughn Grissom worked out a lead and moved into second after a faulty pick-off attempt sent Wynns into right field by airmail. Carlos Rodon struckout Marcell Ozuna for the first out, but Robbie Grossman followed with a single that scored Grissom and tied the game.
Morton worked a perfect inning in the third, but the Giants re-took the lead in the fourth. David Villar led off the inning with a double down the leftfield-line. Morton then struckout Brandon Crawford for the first out, but Davis followed with a double on the left center hole to make it 2-1.
William Contreras led off the fifth with a single, but was left behind when Rodon struckout Michael Harris and Ozuna while Grissom lined out. Rodon would leave after the fifth, despite having only thrown 71 pitches. He gave up two basehits, an unearned run and struckout eight batters.
Morton worked a scoreless fifth and came back for sixth. He dropped Joc Pederson to start the inning, but then hit Villar and walked Brandon Crawford. After a first pitch to Davis, Brian Snitker blasted out of the dugout and called Jesse Chavez out of the bullpen who walked Davis to load the bases. Chavez then got Willie Calhoun pop out for the second out, but then gave up a two-run single to Wynns to extend San Francisco’s lead to 4-1. Snitker would go to his bullpen again for Tyler Matzek, who knocked out pinch-hitter Lewis Brinson to escape without further damage.
The Braves got a two-out single to William Contreras in the seventh, but Michael Harris bounced out against Scott Alexander to end the inning. Matzek stayed in the game and added two more strikeouts while retired the side in the bottom of the inning.
Atlanta threatened again in the eighth against John Brebbia. Eddie Rosario, pinch-hitting for Marcell Ozuna, reached on a swinging bunt to get things started. Grossman singled down the line to the left to bring the tying run to the plate. However, Acuña struckout a pitch down and away and Swanson flew into the center to leave the runners behind.
Jackson Stephens threw a scoreless inning in the eighth, but Camilo Doval closed the door in the ninth to end the game.
Atlanta drops to 88-55 in the season and is one game back from the Mets pending the outcome of their game with the Cubs. The Braves will enjoy a much-needed day off on Thursday before kicking off a six-game homestand with a three-game run against the Philadelphia Phillies.
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