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Game 50 Recap: Braves 9, Diamondbacks 3

The Atlanta Braves salvage the final day of a disappointing road 2-5 road trip, by defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks by a final score of 9-3.

Okay - so I was four runs too generous in my fantasized outcome of the game, but the bottom line is that the Atlanta Braves did indeed salvage the final game of what pretty much has been an extremely futile road trip, by defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks in the desert.

The Braves attacked early with doubles from both Kelly Johnson and Yunel Escobar, with Chipper Jones to add to the scoring, and never looked back.  It should be noted that between Johnson, Escobar, and Jones as the 1-2-3 batters went a combined 9 for 15, with both Johnson and Escobar each hitting three doubles, and Jones connected on his 5th home run of the season.

Speaking of home runs, it was the first time all season that viewers at home actually saw our misunderstood left fielder smile during a game, when Garret Anderson connected on his first ever home run in a Braves uniform.

The best part about the offensive outburst today, was not only did the Braves score a lot of runs, but it was done frequently, and drawn out over the span of five innings, instead of blasting away in one or two innings, and then going cold throughout the rest of the game.  The 1-2-3 hitters shined, but Matt Diaz (playing in at RF instead of you-know-who) contributed with two hits of his own (and endless hustle), while Brian McCann didn't get a hit, but nursed out FOUR walks.

The only negative about this entire game is when an errant slider by Max Scherzer popped Casey Kotchman in the right shin, and took him out of the game in the 4th inning.  The diagnosis was a bad contusion, and X-rays came back negative (a good thing).  But it was still a sickening thud to hear, and a concerning moment considering how thinned by injuries the Braves are right now.

Saving the best for last, the offense should not take the least bit away from what was the first Major League win for young Kris Medlen, whom staked with an early lead that only continued to grow, was able to settle in, and steal the show.  After walking the first batter of the game, Medlen went five innings, giving up only one hit and striking out seven.  Although he lost the shutout in the 6th, he still ended his outing with a solid six innings pitched, one run on four hits, a walk, and a magnificent nine strikeouts.  Wonderful game, Kris, we hope to see more of that out of you in the future.

Tomorrow is an off-day, but the Braves come back to Atlanta to begin a 10-game homestand against the NL Central, as the Cubs, Brewers and Pirates come to town.  Right back at .500, let's hope the Bravos can pick up where they left off at home, and get back to some winning ways.

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