Found September 09, 2013 on Fox Sports South:
After four straight losses -- including three in Philadelphia where they scored a total of eight runs -- the Braves were in dire need of a breakout offensively. The got it, scoring five runs in the fourth inning as they backed Kris Medlen's gem to blank the Marlins 5-2 Monday to cut the magic number to eight. Here are three observations from Atlanta's victory. 1. It's not his historic run, but Medlen is quietly dominating By the end of May, Kris Medlen was 1-6 and hadn't won a game since April 9. He had a 3.48 ERA and a 48-to-24 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Not bad, but certainly not the stuff of the next great Braves pitcher, which many saw in the tea leaves after 12 starts with a 0.97 ERA to end 2012. But of late, the Medlen of old -- or at least one resembling the massive expectations placed on him this offseason -- has returned and at the perfect time with the postseason just weeks away. Through six shutout innings Medlen didn't give up a hit to anyone not named Chris Coughlan -- he tagged Medlen for singles in the first, third and sixth -- and allowed five base runners in all, with no one advancing past second base. He found trouble in the seventh, giving up a double to Juan Pierre and single to Adeiny Hechavarria before Ed Lucas scored them both with a one-out double. He would be the last batter Medlen would face, but in yielding six hits in 6 13 innings with six Ks and two walks, Medlen (13-12) improved to 6-2 in his last eight starts with a 2.77 ERA and 49-to-8 K:BB ratio. He did miss out on his 10th straight start without more than one BB, keeping him from becoming the first Braves player to do so since Greg Maddiux in 2001. But there is this tidbit that remains in Medlen's corner: in 43 starts when given a lead, he is now 26-3, with 14 no decisions. 2. Gattis continues to feast on fish As part of that fourth-inning outburst it was Evan Gattis that started the scoring, following Justin Upton and Freddie Freeman with a two-run double,the Braves' third straight two-bagger. For El Oso Blanco, it was the continuation of two truths: one recent and one that we've seen all season long. In going 1-for-4, Gattis kept up his torrid run since his three-day stint with Triple-A Gwinnett, hitting .333.857.363 with three home runs -- including the longest of the season at 486 feet -- two doubles and five RBI. He also is feasting on the Marlins -- enter the visual on the bear snagging fish out of a stream here -- with 10 hits in 24 at-bats (.416) and six of those hits have been of the extra-base variety with three doubles and two HRs. 3. Walden appears close to a return and Avilan's no doubt happy about that Out the past few weeks with a sore groin, Jordan Walden will complete a bullpen session at Marlins Park on Tuesday, putting him that much closer to reclaiming his spot as a setup man -- and taking some of the workload off Luis Avilan in the process. Walden hasn't pitched since Aug. 21 vs. the Mets and tweaked his groin while running before a game in St. Louis just after a two-game series in New York. He attempted to thrown off a mound last week but stopped five pitches in due to discomfort. If the mound session goes well, he could return after one more round of bullpen work. Without Walden, the Braves had ridden Avilan, the left-handed setup man. He has allowed a run in four of 12 appearances, a rough run considering he didn't yield one earned run in 35 games from May 24-Aug. 14. Avilan appeared in his third game in four days Monday, giving up a hit to Coughlan before striking out Donovan Solano and Christian Yelich. The Braves' best weapon against lefties -- his .172 batting average against is better than Walden (.179) or Craig Kimbrel (.239) -- it's a amount of work manager Fredi Gonzalez certainly doesn't want him carrying with the playoffs so close.

WATCH: Evan Gattis crushes longest home run of 2013

Your browser does not support iframes. Evan “Oso Blanco” Gattis, a rookie catcher and outfielder for the Atlanta Braves crushes the longest homer of the 2013 MLB season. The blast went 489 feet by ESPN’s calculations. Oso Blanco means “white bear” in Spanish, which is a nickname some minor league teammates gave him to describe […]

PHOTO: Braves teammates hold an online 'ab-off'

So, for some reason or another, Atlanta Braves teammates Dan Uggla and Gerald Laird decided to have an “Ab-Off” on Monday. Of course, for an “Ab-Off” to be officially sanctioned by the governing body that oversees the PAOA (Professional Ab-Off Association), the competitors must present their abs to the PAOA Board of Governors. If that […]The post ‘Ab-Off’ between teammates...

Chopcast: Braves still fighting for NL's top seed

ATLANTA As was customary during the '90s and early-aughts, the Braves have been one of the premier models of consistency in baseball this season. The team leaving Philadelphia Sunday night one that had just suffered a series sweep for only the third time this season (Tigers, Padres, Phillies) may not have resembled that model, not after being held to just 2-for-25 hitting...

Gattis' two homers only hits Braves could muster

Evan Gattis apparently picked up on something Sunday that his Braves teammates could not. Gattis hit two long home runs, but they were the only hits Atlanta could muster off Philadelphia Phillies starter Cole Hamels as they fell 3-2 in the final contest of a three-game series sweep. ''I saw some good pitches to hit today,'' Gattis said. ''But we lost the...

Braves suffer sweep, move on to Miami

Ask any Braves fan and they will tell you that the Braves are at their best when they are competing against teams above .500 who are likely headed for the playoffs. That same Braves fan will tell you just how frustrating it is to watch their club fall to teams like the Mets, Marlins and Phillies who, by the numbers, shouldn’t have a chance at bringing down a club with a record...

Braves' Jason Heyward to take batting practice Friday

As much as the moment will be downplayed, Jason Heyward taking batting practice will be a big first step in his return from the frightening jaw fracture he suffered.  Heyward is scheduled to take normal batting practice with the Atlanta Braves on Friday, then the team will evaluate where he goes from there. Mark Bowman of says it's too early to tell when Heyward...

Teheran pitches Braves past Marlins 4-3

Julio Teheran, working on 10 days' rest, overcame a rough first inning and pitched into the seventh to help the Atlanta Braves beat the Miami Marlins 4-3 on Tuesday night. Teheran (12-7) gave up three runs in the first, then none after that, and he left with a 4-3 lead. Luis Ayala came on to strike out Giancarlo Stanton with the bases loaded to end the seventh, and Craig Kimbrel...

Three Cuts: Braves trip Marlins; magic number at 7

Here are three things we learned from the Braves' 4-3 win over the Marlins, aside from how Freddie Freeman and Evan Gattis (two RBI, three runs, four hits) look pretty good as a 3-4 combo in the lineup. 1. In two weeks, Luis Ayala not Craig Kimbrel or Jordan Walden might get credit for the bullpen's seminal moment of the season OK, so the majority of Marlins-Braves tilts...

Teheran leads Braves past Marlins

Julio Teheran, working on 10 days' rest, overcame a rough first inning and pitched into the seventh to help the Atlanta Braves beat the Miami Marlins 4-3 on Tuesday night. Teheran (12-7) gave up three runs in the first, then none after that, and he left with a 4-3 lead. Luis Ayala came on to strike out Giancarlo Stanton with the bases loaded to end the seventh, and Craig Kimbrel...

Braves-Marlins Preview

Kris Medlen has won a lot of games of late. The right-hander will look to help the Atlanta Braves snap a four-game losing streak Monday when they pay a visit to the Miami Marlins. The Braves (85-57) have scored 10 runs and are batting .156 over their skid. The top four hitters in Atlanta's order - B.J. Upton, Andrelton Simmons, Freddie Freeman and Chris Johnson - went a combined...

Atlanta Braves Top 21 Prospects: 2013 Review

  With the 2013 season winding down and most leagues already into playoff mode, we’re going to take a look back at the preseason Top 21′s. We’ll look at what was said preseason and what the point of... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]

Braves promote catcher Christian Bethancourt

Bethancourt probably won't play much down the stretch this season but he could be the Braves' Opening Day catcher next spring if impending free agent Brian McCann is not re-signed. The 22-year-old hit .277/.305/.436 with 12 homers and 45 RBI in 90 games this summer at Double-A.

Braves hold off Marlins 4-3 after a late-game chase

For a team that’s had to reinvent itself time and time again this season the Braves’ offense has found recent solace in the capable — and bare — hands of Evan Gattis. The difference in the first two games of the series against the Marlins and the better part of the time since he returned from Triple-A Gwinnett is the Braves put runners on base for him. Gattis revved up...

Justin Upton Drops the Philly Phanatic

Video: This would never happen to Mr. Met

Around the Major Leagues: 2013 Week 22

All the news from around the major leagues. Atlanta’s Evan Gattis hit the longest homer in MLB this season.
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