With all due respect to magic numbers and division leads the Braves were busy trying to buck a couple of trends Wednesday night — win with Paul Maholm on the mound and get something going with Dan Uggla back from laser eye surgery and B.J. Upton back in the lineup behind him. The walk-off win was gravy. Maholm didn’t record the win but the Braves defeated the Indians 3-2 on a Chris Johnson walk-off single to give the Braves their second consecutive victory over Cleveland to start this homestand. The Braves won for the first time behind Maholm since June 30 snapping a stretch of four losses in games he started. The win went to Craig Kimbrel who pitched a perfect ninth on eight pitches and set up the Braves for some bottom-of-the-ninth heroics. Jordan Schafer was 3-for-4 with a walk two RBIs and two stolen bases. He started the Braves’ offense with a two-run single in the second inning and helped finished it with a one-out single in the ninth. He stole second base and after an intentional walk to Freddie Freeman Schafer scored on a headfirst slide after Johnson singled to left field off reliever Joe Smith. Schafer was the offensive catalyst but the Braves were happy to see a couple of eighth-inning singles by Uggla and Upton even if they didn’t net a run. Maholm left the mound with a 2-1 lead after six solid innings hoping to snap a four-game losing streak. He limited the Indians to one run in six innings in his second start back from a wrist injury working around six hits and a solo home run by Mike Aviles. But it was a sacrifice fly by Aviles that spoiled the eighth inning for Luis Avilan and tied the score 2-2 erasing any hopes of a win for Maholm. Avilan pitched for the fourth time in five days and tried to get the Braves through the eighth inning while Jordan Walden rests with what manager Fredi Gonzalez described as a leg issue. Avilan gave up back-to-back singles to start the eighth and loaded the bases on a one-out walk. He had to settle for leaving with the score tied 2-2 after the Braves caught Asdrubal Cabrera taking off from first base.
Johnson, Braves walk off with 3-2 win against Indians
Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Aug 29