The Braves pitching kept the Pirates hitters down again. Not really anything unusual or anything to brag about. It’d be like some C list actress saying she used to date Charlie Sheen. That list is long.
Today’s pitcher to keep the Bucs from ringing the scoreboard bell with frequency was Kenshin Kawakami. Problem is he was winless in 2010 coming into the game. Kawakami was in good shape to get his first win of the year. Troy Glaus drove in two runs early with a sac fly and a solo homer. The Atlanta starter had pitched six excellent shutout innings but ran into trouble in the 7th. He walked Garrett Jones and then allowed a game tying homer to Jeff Clement.
Kawakami was pulled and Bucs starter Paul Maholm was done after six (two earned runs despite 10 hits and three walks). The bullpen decided. If Joel Hanrahan is Superman, then his control is Kryptonite. In the 8th he walked two hitters and then gave up a two run, tie breaking single to Chipper Jones in the 8th. He was pulled for Javier Lopez who allowed a two run triple to Jason Heyward. Ballgame. Billy Wagner needed 10 pitches to pitch a perfect 9th. That made a winner of Takashi Saito, his first W of the year.
Maholm only allowed a pair of runs despite being in frequent trouble.
Kawawkami had no record in one previous appearance against the Pirates.
Maholm’s career mark fell to 1-2 against Atlanta.
Martin Prado will be an all-star this year or soon.
Nate McLouth was 0-3 and is hitting just barely better than Aki Iwamura.