PITTSBURGH 3, ATLANTA 0
Starter Paul Maholm and the Pirates continued the trend of Atlanta's ineptitude against left-handed pitching, dealing Jair Jurrjens a hard-luck 3-0 loss. Wasted scoring chances plagued the Braves the entire game as they left six runners in scoring position, four against starting pitcher Paul Maholm and one against reliever John Grabow.
The only run of the game was scored in the second inning. After Brandon Moss had a leadoff triple (the second of the game, probably caused by Jordan Schafer's inexperience in attempting to catch each ball), he scored on a one-out groundout to Kelly Johnson up the middle, who made a nice play on the ball. The Braves had the bases loaded with no one out in the ninth, but Casey Kotchman popped up to the catcher for a rare infield fly rule call. Jordan Schafer then bounced out into a double play to end the inning.
Pittsburgh's 1-0 lead held up the entire game as the Braves continued to leave men on base (nine in total). Jair Jurrjens pitched 6 2/3 innings, giving up just the one run and striking out seven batters. He left the game in the seventh inning after walking two straight Pirate batters. Peter Moylan finished the inning by getting pinch-hitter Delmon Young to pop up in foul ground.
Nate McLouth gave Pittsburgh some insurance with a two-run home run off of Braves closer Mike Gonzalez in the eighth. Matt Capps pitched the ninth for his third save.
It seemed all night that in scoring chances, the Braves hit balls right at Pirate fielders. Quite frankly, it was a particularly frustrating loss. Hopefully, the Braves bats decide to wake up tomorrow against Ian Snell.
W - Paul Maholm (2-0)
L - Jair Jurrjens (2-1)
S - Matt Capps (3)
HR - Nate McLouth (3)
P Paul Maholm, Pittsburgh - 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 2 SO, W
P Jair Jurrjens, Atlanta - 6 2/3 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO, L; 1-1, BB
CF Nate McLouth, Pittsburgh - 2-4, HR, R, 2 RBI
AP Photo by John Heller
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