When the hottest hitter in baseball is sitting out of the lineup, you’d expect that there’d be a couple offensive hitches. Chipper sat with a mild groin strain last night, and the Braves were unable to get anything going against Cole Hamels and the Philadelphia Phillies. Kelly Johnson also got a break and Ruben Gotay got the start at second. Omar Infante got the start at third for Chipper. The offense was benign without Chipper and nothing got going all night long.
Starting on the mound for the Braves was Chuck James, who had given up four home runs in 19 innings to date this year. He gave up three homers and five runs in just four innings last night. To quote him “I’ve just got to learn how to pitch again.” I know that the Citizens Bank Ballpark is famous for being a hitters park, but the Braves have to get more out of their starters to compete in games like this.
Cole Hamels, on the other hand, was excellent. He baffled Braves hitters all night long and ended with a four-hit shutout. That makes the Braves’ road record 6-16 – and yes, that’s the worst in the majors.
James is likely out of the starting rotation for a bit here. Who do you want to see replace him? Jeff Bennett? The AJC suggested Charlie Morton, a pitching prospect we saw in spring training but has been spending some time at Richmond before he comes to the majors. Do you think it’s time to give Morton a go?
Tags: Charlie Morton, Chuck James, Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies
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