The first blow came before the season even started. On July 22, Atlanta Braves’ star pitcher Mike Soroka re-tore his right Achilles and needed season ending surgery.
The second blow occurred on July 10. Atlanta’s Superstar outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. was sprinting back while tracking a line drive off the bat of Miami’s Jazz Chisholm when he leaped and landed awkwardly tearing his right ACL.
The final blow happened on on Sept. 10. Slugger Marcell Ozuna was placed on administrative leave for issues involving domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse.
For the majority of the season, nearly nothing went right for the Atlanta Braves. They headed into the All-Star break standing at 44-45 and four games back of the New York Mets in the NL East. Now, just three months later, they are one win away from returning back to the NLCS.
Ian Anderson. Ian Anderson. Ian Anderson. Through his first two years in the league, Ian Anderson has been nothing but dominate during the postseason.
5 postseason starts for Ian Anderson.
0.76 postseason ERA for Ian Anderson. pic.twitter.com/YrQ1ja1AFJ
— Bally Sports: Braves (@BravesOnBally) October 11, 2021
Not only has his composure been unfathomable, but his stuff has been devastating. Complimenting his fastball that occasionally touches 95 mph, Anderson throws a changeup that disappears out of thin air. Relying on that pitch, Anderson was able to toss five scoreless innings while striking out six.
The Atlanta offense was held relatively quite, but a 5th inning three-run homerun via Joc Pederson was enough to get the job done.
It's Goin' Down.
That's @yungjoc650's second pinch-hit home run this series. pic.twitter.com/89hAi4L52I
— MLB (@MLB) October 11, 2021
Who will toe the mound for the Brewers heading into Game 4? It won’t be Game 2 pitcher Brandon Woodruff. It certainly won’t be Game 3 pitcher Freddy Peralta, who by the way was excellent himself tossing four scoreless and striking out five. Could it be Game 1 pitcher and potential NL Cy-Young Corbin Burns? No, according to manager Craig Counsell.
To this point in the series, the Brewers success has come and gone with their pitching. Their bats have yet to wake up, scoring zero runs the past two games. Even so, they are hopeful to break out soon.
The Braves are yet to announcer their pitcher for Game 4. Ultimately, if the Brewers can’t get the bats going rather quickly, they will have all offseason to try and wake them up in preparation for the 2022 season.
First pitch is set for 5:15 p.m. this evening. Game 5 is scheduled for Oct. 14 at 5:07 p.m. if necessary.
The NLCS will begin on Oct. 16.