Man in the Stands

Braves finally wake up before heading home

It took five games for the Atlanta Braves to realize that the season had started and that the wins actually counted as opposed to the previous weeks of Spring Training.

Out of the gate, the Bravos lost a three-game series to the New York Mets. The first game of the series saw Tommy Hanson pick up his first loss of the season in a close 1-0 battle. Game two pitted Jair Jurrjens against R.A. Dickey, which handed the Braves their second loss of the season in as many games with a final score of 4-2. The final game of the season opening series put Mike Minor on the mound against Mets left-hander Jonathon Niese. Again, fans watched as Atlanta’s team dropped to 0-3 on the season in another two-run loss.

After being swept by their rivals, the Braves headed to Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas to face another National League foe: the Houston Astros. The Braves came out swinging early, posting two runs in the second inning and one in the top of the third. The Astros’ bats came alive in the bottom of the inning, scoring three runs to tie the ball game up before adding another run the following inning and two runs in both the sixth and eighth innings to beat the Braves. The 8-3 loss pushed Atlanta back to 0-4 to start the 2012 season.

The next night was one of Braves firsts, for the season and for a career. Chipper Jones made his first start of his final season after having surgery to fix a torn meniscus in his left knee on March 26. In his first game, Jones hit his first homer of the season. Other firsts on the night: rookie Tyler Pastornicky put his first major league home run into the stands, reigning National League Rookie of the Year Craig Kimbrel made his first appearance and picked up his first save of the season. These firsts led to another: the Braves first ‘W’ in the win-column of the 2012 season. Kimbrel picked up his second save in Atlanta’s second win 24 hours later.

Now it’s Turner Field’s turn to host a few ball games as the Braves open up at home against last season’s NL MVP Ryan Braun and the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night! This game brings a lot of excitement for baseball fans in the ATL, especially since the home team is coming off of two wins in a row. Jurrjens will be on the mound for a shot at his first win on the season against 35-year-old lefty Randy Wolf, who is also in search of his first victory this year.

Braves fans will have a chance to fill The Ted for six straight games. A Friday through Sunday series against the Brewers leads into a Monday through Wednesday series, for a chance at revenge, against the Mets before the team heads back out for a long seven-game road trip.

Time to get that Tomahawk Chop going again! Braves baseball is back, Atlanta!

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