Braves > Miller Flirts With No-Hitter In Braves Win

| May 18, 2015

Braves Baseball

Kyle Taylor, Valdosta Today Sports

MIAMI – With two outs in the eighth inning, Ichiro comes up to the plate. Shelby Miller (4-1) had faced the minimum up to that point and had to get through a player with a career total of 2,871 hits.

Ichiro grounded out to Andrelton Simmons to end the inning and to send Miller into the ninth with his no-hitter still intact.

All the buzz and intensity in Atlanta in recent weeks has been surrounding the Atlanta Hawks advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals, but Sunday afternoon Atlanta fans were on the edge of their seats waiting to see their first no-hitter since Kent Mercker did it against the Los Angeles Dodgers back in 1994.

To start the ninth, Adeiny Hechavarria grounded out to first. Next up was Jhonatan Solano who flied out softly to center fielder, Cameron Maybin. The way Miller’s stuff was looking Sunday afternoon, it was hard to imagine there would be any way he would not be able to bring it home with one out remaining.

That was until Justin Bour hit a clean single up the middle.

Braves catcher A.J. Pierzynski, who caught a no-hitter and perfect game earlier in his career, reacted in a way that all of Braves Country was feeling. Dee Gordon followed up with a single of his own before Miller finished the game by getting Martin Prado to pop out.

The Braves, however, did win the game by a score of 6-0 and finished the sweep of the Marlins.

Shelby Miller told MLB.com, “Obviously, things didn’t finish as we wanted, but at the same time, we got a sweep. I had a lot of fun. That’s all that matters.”

Todd Cunningham spoke with the Braves Radio Network, “It is good when you can be disappointed about a complete game shutout.” Todd continued his hot hitting with two more hits in the game and going 8-12 in the series.

There were a little over 23,000 in attendance at Marlins Park and a handful paid respect to opposing pitcher for the effort after the single by Bour

The Marlins organization was not as impressed. Manager Mike Redmond was fired after the game on Sunday. Bench coach, Rob Leary, was also relieved of his duties.

Jace Peterson continues to be the second inning hero for the Braves with a two-run single to make the score 4-0 off of Henderson Alvarez. This came a day after Peterson hit a grand slam in the second inning in Saturday’s game. Pierzynksi, Ciriaco, Freeman, and Maybin contributed with RBIs of their own.

The story Sunday was Shelby Miller’s performance and his rise to become Atlanta’s ace. The deal the Braves made in the offseason with Cardinals is showing to be payback for the deal between the same teams that sent Adam Wainwright to the Cardinals for J.D. Drew in 2003.

The sweep gives the Braves a record of 18-19 and a little space from the Marlins and Phillies for third place in the division.

The Braves will back at Turner Field starting Tuesday against the Rays before the Brewers come to town over the weekend. Mike Foltynewicz (2-0) will go for the Braves against Erasmo Ramirez (1-1) of the Rays.

Eric Stults has indeed been replaced in the rotation by Williams Perez after throwing 40.1 innings for the Braves with a 5.36 ERA. Stults will be moved to the bullpen for now.

Williams Perez is a 23-year-old right-hander that has been called up from Triple-A Gwinnett and will be sent to the mound Wednesday against the Rays. Perez posted a 1.33 ERA in five starts this season for the minor league affiliate. There are a few other options in the minors should Perez stumble out of the gate.

After finishing off the Marlins on the road and an off-day on Monday, the energy level should be high at the Ted on Tuesday night with first pitch at 7:10.

 

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