Matt Kemp and the Braves had yet another productive night at the plate, and Kemp led the way with two big homers as the Braves ended up beating the Marlins 6-3 tonight.
The Braves wasted no time getting on the board, as Ender Inciarte led off a game with a triple. Christian Yelich tried his best Ender Inciarte impression in an attempt to snatch the long hit away, but he was unable to make the jumping catch at the fence and Inciarte was able to race all the way to third base. Adonis Garcia grounded out to second base and that allowed Inciarte to scamper home for the game’s first run.
Atlanta continued the scoring two innings later, as Inciarte was on base again and Gordon Beckham joined him on the basepaths as well. Freddie Freeman hit a sharp liner to right field to bring in both Beckham and Inciarte to make it 3-0. The hit also extended Freeman’s hit streak (26) and on-base streak (42), so Atlanta’s star first baseman is continuing to rake at the plate.
Freeman's 26-game hit streak is 5th-longest in ATL franchise history and the longest since Dan Uggla’s ATL-record 33-gamer in 2011— David O'Brien (@DOBrienAJC) September 23, 2016
Speaking of raking, Matt Kemp came through with a couple of massive homers tonight. Kemp went into tonight’s game hitting .290/.343/.489 with 115 wRC+ and eight home runs during his time with the Braves. After tonight, he now has 10 homers as an Atlanta Brave. The first of his dingers happened immediately after Freddie Freeman’s RBI single. Jose Urena threw Kemp an 83-mph slider and he promptly deposited it into the bullpen in left field for a two-run homer. Just like that, the Braves were up 5-0 and in complete control of the game.
By the sixth inning, the Marlins had gotten a run back thanks to an RBI single from Marcell Ozuna, and Mike Dunn had just entered the game on a high note by striking out Freddie Freeman. Unfortunately for Dunn, he was immediately brought back down to Earth thanks to Matt Kemp, who figured that this would be a good time to give Justise Winslow of the Miami Heat a souvenir. Winslow was sitting in the Clevelander, so this means that the ball he caught was Kemp’s second dinger of the evening. That made it 6-1 Braves and the five-run lead was restored.
Meanwhile, Josh Collmenter had a very nice start on the mound for the Braves tonight. He made it through seven innings, struck out four, only walked two, and managed to only give up two runs on five hits, with one of those hits being a towering homer from J.T. Realmuto in Collmenter’s final inning. Other than that, Collmenter did a good job of holding the Marlins at bay.
Chaz Roe came in to relieve Collmenter for the eighth inning, and the Marlins put Roe into a bit of a jam. Martin Prado hit an RBI double to bring the Marlins within three, and then there was big trouble when noted Braves killer Justin Bour came up to bat with runners at the corners and two outs. Fortunately, Bour only flew out to left field, and that ended the scoring threat for Miami.
Mauricio Cabrera came on in the ninth inning to finish off the game, and while there was a bit of a mini-adventure — he walked the first batter on four pitches and nearly threw the first out into center field in an effort to get the lead runner out — he eventually got the final three outs of the game to lock down Atlanta’s sixth straight win and give the Marlins a huge blow to their already-frail playoff hopes.