With his spot in the rotation very much in question after a shaky start to the season, Randall Delgado turned in arguably the best start of his Atlanta career so far, dominating the Marlins over 6.1 innings of 2 hit baseball. Delgado struck out seven men and only walked one, setting a career-high for strikeouts in a game.
The Braves struck first, scoring twice in the 4th off of big right-hander Josh Johnson. After Brian McCann led off the inning with a double, Dan Uggla walked to put men at 1st and 2nd. Freddie Freeman stepped to the plate and bounced a 1-0 pitch through the right side of the infield for an RBI single. With no one out, Jason Heyward stepped up to the plate and things got interesting. Heyward hit a grounder to second that looked like a double play, but the relay throw from short to first hit Freddie Freeman in the finger (his hand flew up as he slid into second base). The umpire called obstruction and ruled Heyward out as well. Freeman would have to leave the game with a "contusion" on his finger. He's currently listed as day to day. But the inning wasn't over. Josh Johnson, now with two outs and a man at third, intentionally walked Andrelton Simmons to get to Delgado, and Delgado made him pay, bouncing a 1-1 pitch through the hole on the left of the infield for what would turn out to be the game winning RBI.
Delgado was actually perfect through the first 4 innings of the game, before giving up a first-pitch leadoff double to Giancarlo Stanton to open the 5th. He missed high, and was honestly pretty lucky it stayed in the ballpark. After a flyout and a groundout, Delgado gave up a full count single to Bryan Peterson, scoring Stanton. The two hits in the 5th would be all he would allow on the night. Delgado came back by striking out the side the 6th, but he was hooked after a one out walk to Stanton in the 7th.
Johnny Venters came on in relief of Delgado, getting Logan Morrison swinging on a nasty slider and getting Justin Ruggiano to line out to Jason Heyward. Eric O'Flaherty worked a perfect 8th, and Craig Kimbrel worked a perfect 9th to preserve the win.
Delgado handled Reyes three times tonight, and Kimbrel whiffed the Marlins' lead-off man in the 9th, snapping Reyes' 15 game hitting streak. Brian McCann went 3-4 tonight, including a nice shift-busting opposite field hit, and was the only Brave to reach base multiple times. Braves pitchers now have more RBIs so far in this series than all Marlins hitters combined.