Even with another strong outing by Brandon Beachy, the Atlanta Braves were unable to get by the Philadelphia Phillies on May 1, losing by the score of 4-2. Antonio Bastardo picked up the win for the Phillies as Jonny Venters had his first loss of the year.
Jonny Venters has been pitching great all season for the Atlanta Braves, not giving up a run in his previous nine starts out of the bullpen. However, it was a different story on May 1 against the Phillies, as he didn't have great command of all of his pitches, stating after the game that "I didn't make pitches with guys on, and they made me pay for it. Brandon pitched his butt off today, and we were in the game in the eighth. For me to let it get away like that, it's unacceptable."
Part of the loss may be blamed on the shift the Braves made when Hunter Pence was up to bat in the eighth; Pence hit right through it, allowing two runs to score. I can understand the statistics and all behind it, but in that particular situation where there were runners in scoring position in a close game, I don't think it was the right decision to make by Fredi Gonzalez, even though it is easy to say that knowing exactly what happened as a result of it.
Beachy has really gotten into a zone this season, and pitched another great game against the Phillies, going seven innings strong while giving up two runs on five hits. The question for Beachy to this point in his career has not been whether or not he has the potential to be a great starting pitcher in the major leagues, but when he would turn that potential into reality, and he has done exactly that in the 2012 season. For the Braves to be successful this year, though, they will need to rely not only upon Brandon's improved performance, but that of Mike Minor and Randall Delgado as well.
Ryan Kekoufski is a lifelong Atlanta Braves fan. He covers sports for the Yahoo! Contributor Network, and currently resides in Virginia. Follow him on Twitter @RyanKekoufski.
- Sports & Recreation
- Atlanta Braves
- Brandon Beachy
- Jonny Venters
- Antonio Bastardo