Jason Heyward smiles when he thinks back to one particular at-bat on Sunday. Its a memory he doesnt mind reliving.
The Braves and Cardinals were scoreless when Heyward came to the plate in the third inning with the bases full of his teammates. There were two outs, so he expected St. Louis starter Lance Lynn to put the ball over the plate.
I knew he had to come to me, Heyward said.
Heyward worked the count until it was full. Lynn threw another strike, and that time, Heyward lashed a double into the right field corner, driving in all three runners and giving the Braves a three-run lead in a game that they would win 7-4 to sweep the Cardinals.
He was in a situation right there with the bases loaded, Heyward said. He didnt want to walk a run in. You want to make a guy make a pitch you can hit. And thats what happened. He had no choice.
Thats part of the philosophy the Braves have adopted this year, especially with runners on base. They want to force pitchers to throw a lot of pit...