John Smoltz was the pitching star, Jeff Francoeur was the hitting star, and Ryan Langerhans was the defensive star. Smoltz made it look pretty easy on Friday night in Atlanta, pitching a complete game four-hitter. He made one mistake against Ryan Zimmerman, but he rolled the rest of the way, allowing only one hit after the fifth.
Jeff Francoeur had three RBIs on the night despite leaving six runners on base and grounding into a double play. Once again, everyone in the lineup had a hit except for the pitcher. Brian McCann was on base every time, getting two walks (one intentional), two hits, and hit by the pitch once. The two for two night raised McCann's average to .347, which is tops on the team and tied for the league lead (with another catcher, Brad Ausmus). I wonder when the last time two catchers were tied for the league lead in batting average.
Ryan Langerhans had a spectacular diving catch to end the second inning. He ran pretty much flat out towards the file line and dove at the last minute to barely reach the ball, robbing Ryan Zimmerman of a hit and ending the inning.
The Braves are playing good baseball at the moment. They are scoring runs without the benefit of homeruns, and they are learning to hit in key situations. Let's hope Jorge Sosa can turn his season around with a strong outing today.
Washington 2, Atlanta 6 at Turner Field
Washington Record: (12-24)
Atlanta Record: (16-19)
Winning pitcher - John Smoltz (3-2)
Losing pitcher - Ramon Ortiz (0-4)