Julio Teheran's well-documented struggles on the road continued on Saturday has he gave up 6 runs on 9 hits as the Braves were handed their fifth straight defeat, 8-4. Jace Peterson snapped out of a 2 for 24 funk with 2 hits including a 3 run double that got the Braves within two runs, but the rest of the offense remained relatively quiet in Freddie Freeman's absence. The Braves scattered 11 hits and going 2 for 10 with runners in scoring position. The Braves are now 3-6 in their past 9 games while averaging 2.1 runs per game.
Its no real secret that Teheran has been quite bad on the road this season, where his ERA now sits north of 8.00 and this game would be no different. Teheran's woes started early in this game when in the bottom of the first, after getting the leadoff batter out, he gave up 5 runs on 5 hits and an HBP of Andrew McCutchen (who ended up leaving the game) before getting another out. This resulted in a visit at the mound from Roger McDowell and, after a Charlie Morton sac bunt moved the runner over to third, Teheran did manage to retire Josh Harrison on a strikeout to end the inning but the damage had been done.
The Braves did start the game well with singles by Jace Peterson and Nick Markakis. However, Jace's single was wiped out by a double play from Cameron Maybin and Markakis was thrown out at home on a call by home plate umpire John Tumpane (a VERY dubious out call and review at that) when AJ Pierzynski doubled to right field.
There was seemingly a bit of retaliation for McCutchen being hit by a pitch when Andrelton Simmons was plunked by Morton in the top of the second. It is worth noting, though, that Morton has had 35 total HBPs combined the past two seasons. Regardless, both benches were warned and X-rays on McCutchen's elbow were negative.
The Braves got on the board in the third when Cameron Maybin hit a bloop double and advanced to third on a throwing error by Pittsburgh outfielder Josh Harrison. Nick Markakis drove him in with an RBI single. After a 30 minute or so rain delay in the 5th, both Morton and Teheran would come back in to pitch. Teheran would go on to give up another run in the bottom of the fifth when the Braves caught Pedro Alvarez in a rundown between first and second but couldn't stop Starling Marte from scoring from third on the play.
The Braves would not go down without a fight, however. In the top of the seventh, after back to back singles by Joey T and Andrelton and then pinch hitter Eury Perez was hit by a pitch (was not considered intentional so the previous warning from the umpire did not lead to Morton being ejected), Jace Peterson cleared the bases with a double and the Brave cut the lead to 6-4. Jace is 7 for 11 this year with the bases loaded with 18 RBIs, so the Braves certainly had the right guy up to bat in the situation and he did not disappoint.
However, the bullpen faltered yet again as Nick Masset gave up an RBI double to Francisco Cervelli in the bottom half of the inning on a ball that Nick Markakis probably should have been able to catch. Jordy Mercer would drive him home as well on an RBI single, stretching the lead to 8-4 which would be the game's final margin.