Adonis Garcia hit two homers and scored what ended up being the game-winning run for the Braves as they managed to scratch out an 6-4 victory at Philadelphia — their fifth straight victory so far.
Garcia wasted no time putting the Braves on the board against Vince Velasquez and the Phillies. After Ender Inciarte struck out to lead off the game, Adonis hit the second pitch he saw over the right field fence for a solo shot. The Braves didn’t score any more at that point, and their slim lead stood up until the third inning.
John Gant was actually really close to getting out of this inning with the lead. Gant retired the first two batters he saw with no problem at all, but he ran into issues with Cesar Hernandez, who cranked a line drive all the way into the seats for a solo shot. Gant was one strike away from getting out of the inning against the next two batters he faced, but he hit Aaron Altherr and then Maikel Franco worked a full count to reach base on a single. Ryan Howard then walked to load the bases, and then Cameron Rupp brought home two runs with a double to make it 3-1 Philly.
The two teams exchanged runs over the next three innings — Nick Markakis brought in Matt Kemp with a sacrifice fly to make it 3-2 in the fourth inning, then Maikel Franco smacked a double to make it 4-2 in the fifth frame, and then Adonis Garcia continued his good night by hitting another home run to pull the Braves within one run again by the sixth inning. The seventh inning was notable because it marked Shae Simmons’ second appearance since returning to the bigs. He induced three consecutive groundouts and had his fastball working in the mid-90s (topping out at 97.5 mph), so that was definitely good to see from the returning reliever.
The score remained 4-3 until the eighth inning. This was the first inning in which the Braves didn’t have to deal with Vince Velasquez, and they took advantage of the opportunity to finally face off with Philadelphia’s bullpen. The inning started off with Chase d’Arnaud walking after Maikel Franco failed to bring in a foul pop-up. The Phillies ended up ruing this mistake, because Ender Inciarte followed it up with a double. Adonis Garcia’s soft grounder gave Philadelphia the first out of the inning, but it also tied up the game because d’Arnaud ended up scoring from third base on the play.
Both teams failed to score in the ninth inning (and that was especially good news considering that this was when Jed Bradley made his major league debut), which meant that we were treated to extra innings between these two clubs. Fortunately for us, it seems like the Braves weren’t interested in playing anything more than 10 innings tonight, because they immediately started a rally in the first extra inning. Adonis Garcia walked to start things off, and then Freddie Freeman slashed a single to right field to put Garcia in scoring position at third base. After Matt Kemp moved Freddie over to second base with a grounder, the Phillies intentionally walked Nick Markakis to set up the double play. It didn’t work -- Tyler Flowers hit a grounder up the first base line that probably would’ve rolled foul. Instead, Ryan Howard fielded it and tried to throw it home. Adonis Garcia easily beat the throw and scored the go-ahead run for Atlanta.
A groundout from Jace Peterson added another run to make it 6-4, and that’s how the game ended. That’s now five straight wins for the Braves, and this is their longest win streak since June, which is when they managed to string together six consecutive victories. They'll be going for win number six in a row tomorrow afternoon, and if the offense can keep on rolling like it is right now, then tying their season-long winning streak is definitely not out of the realm of possibility.