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Newcomb crumbles as Braves fall 13-8

The Phillies’ bullpen made this one look closer than it actually was

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves lost an ugly one to Philadelphia, 13-8.

For the third consecutive Monday, the Braves may have to make another post-game tweak to their rotation. After DFA’ing Mike Foltynewicz two weeks ago after a subpar Monday night performance against the Rays, and losing Mike Soroka to an Achilles injury seven days ago, it was Sean Newcomb’s turn for some Monday unpleasantness.

Newcomb, when given an opportunity to lock down a rotation spot for the foreseeable future, put up the worst start of his career, allowing eight runs - all earned - to cross the plate while logging only four outs. It was a tragedy, and an undeniable low point for Newk. Whether his spot is safe in the rotation remains to be seen, but the Braves certainly cannot afford to endure another outing like this.

The Phillies got on Newcomb early and often, galloping out to a 3-0 lead on a Bryce Harper home run before the first out was recorded. After Newcomb calmed down a bit and closed out the inning, and Travis d’Arnaud hit a long home run in the top of the second, the game quickly seemed back within reach.

Then, in the second, things went haywire. A Roman Quinn home run was the catalyst for a prolific outburst from the Phillies, stringing together a single, walk, scary HBP to Bryce Harper, and RBI single to JT Realmuto. After 47 pitches, he was finished.

Fresh off the waiver wire, Robbie Erlin entered in Newcomb’s wake and now finds himself as the answer to a trivia question - which Braves reliever allowed a grand slam on the first pitch in the Braves uniform? That’s right - it took one unfortunately located curveball to Didi Gregorius to stretch Philly’s lead to 9-1.

Erlin was a trouper in this game, shouldering the load that the Braves had hoped would fall to Newcomb. His 2 ⅔ innings helped bridge to the back of the bullpen, and he managed to strike out five Phillies along the way. Alas, he also surrendered two home runs after the Didi slam and when he left, it was 12-1.

Grant Dayton, Shane Greene, and A.J. Minter all saw action between the fifth and the eighth innings, combining to allow one unearned run.

In the ninth inning, Nick Pivetta relieved Nola and promptly gave up a solo shot to Johan Camargo. Following a few infield hits, Charlie Culberson doubled off the wall to score Ender Inciarte, then a Marcell Ozuna sac fly scored Adeiny Hechavarria. Following a Travis d’Arnaud double, the Braves found themselves down 13-5.

Congratulations go out to Nick Markakis, who slapped a double into the corner for his 500th career double to make it 13-6.

A long Austin Riley home run shrunk the lead to 13-8.

The Braves will likely have to make a roster move or two tomorrow, at least one to provide a fresh arm after Erlin threw 43 pitches. He would have to be DFA’d. Newcomb still has two options remaining, so it is not out of the question he could be jettisoned to the Gwinnett alternate training site. We will provide any updates on roster moves as we get word.

The 11-7 Braves will now travel to New York to face the Yankees for two games.

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