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ATLANTA – The ugliness abounded for the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night at SunTrust Park.
Neglected defense, mental errors, non-existent offense: everything was on display in a 12-8 loss at the hands of the Atlanta Braves that was much more unbalanced than the final score indicated.
But easily, the most disturbing development was the nightmarish exit carried out by Corbin Burnes.
Taking control for starter Jhoulys Chacin in the sixth inning, the young right-hander was hit when the Braves quickly converted what was a 3-0 game into a game until the ninth.
They scored nine times and sent 13 batters to the plate in total against Burnes and later Jacob Barnes, with Burnes surrendering most of the damage, including three homers.
POINT OF SCORE: Bravos 12, Brewers 8
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The sixth started innocently when Ozzie Albies made a fold to the left. But Burnes quickly made things worse by making a mistake in a pickoff shoot and Atlanta starter Max Fried.
Ronald Acuña Jr. followed with a RBI single, then Dansby Swanson snapped a 0-for-17 streak connecting to the center to leave Milwaukee in a 7-0 hole.
Burnes briefly recovered by striking out Freddie Freeman, who had hit Atlanta's first home run in the third before Chacin, only to deliver another homer to Josh Donaldson.
After walking to Nick Markakis, Burnes managed to avoid escaping to Austin Riley. Then Tyler Flowers hit a home run to turn it into a 10-0 game and accelerate Burnes' exit.
Atlanta scored twice more against Jacob Barnes before he finally finished the inning. The final line for Burnes was ugly: 2/3 inning, five hits, seven runs and two walks.
The biggest problem, however, was the return of the long ball.
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After allowing 11 of every four starts and being sent to the AAA San Antonio Clbad as a result, Burnes did not allow any of the six relief appearances and recorded an average of 3.00 in the bullpen until the burst on Friday.
Now, Burnes is tied for the Major League lead with two other pitchers, but in only 27 1/3 innings. He has also allowed three homers in four separate appearances.
With the game out of our reach, manager Craig Counsell used Hernán Pérez to launch the eighth. He walked a couple, but also recorded a punch and induced a double roll.
Milwaukee scored all of his runs in the last three innings, with four crossing the plate with two outs in the ninth inning after an error by Dansby Swanson in a routine shot by Lorenzo Cain's hitter.
The game had a bad start due to an uncharacteristic error in the center field of Cain, who did not rush to the ball in the single from Acuña, which led Acuña to be second with a double.
A sacrifice fly and an attack later, Atlanta had taken a quick 1-0 lead.
Chacín allowed three consecutive singles to start the second (he could not finish with any of the hitters after reaching a two-strike count) and stayed behind, 2-0, on a sacrifice fly to the left of Albies.
Then, to start the third, Chacín made a mistake in a 1-2 score to Freeman that Freeman tattooed on the right. Atlanta continued to load the bases after the homer, but Chacin was able to avoid further damage by causing Fried to fly to the left.
Chacín (3-5), who arrived at the night shortly after three consecutive consecutive starts in which he scored an average of 1.59 clean races, settled down after retiring six consecutive and seven of eight.
But with his shooting count at 91 and the Brewers needing offense, he was picked up by popup hitter Eric Thames to start the sixth. He allowed eight hits in the season, three runs and a walk with three strikeouts in his five innings.
Sockets of keys
CONGRATULATIONS: One of the highlights for the Brewers came in the eighth, when Jacob Nottingham hit his first major league homer – a two-run shot to the right of Josh Tomlin. Notthingham also added a single of two RBIs in the ninth.
And if Tomlin's name sounds familiar, he should. He was a candidate for the Brewers' initial rotation in spring training, but he requested and received his release at the end of the camp and then signed with the Braves.
LEARNING CURVE: Rookie Keston Hiura received the first blow from the Brewers with a single inside the box to start the third. Albies approached and threw the ball, but his shot to the first Freeman pulled him out of the bag.
Hiura turned immediately and tried for the second, but with a small and precious space in disgusting territory, Freeman could easily get around the ball and throw it to the second for the out.
NOT HAPPY: After landing in a third-choice fielder's choice, Riley made a quick turn to the left on the first-base line before turning and returning to the bag. Jesus Aguilar tagged Riley and first base referee Jeff Kellogg discarded him, which knocked Counsell out of the dugout.
After a somewhat animated discussion with Kellogg, Counsell returned to the dugout, but not without first giving a look to referee Mark Ripperger.
This year: 27-20
Last year: 28-19
Saturday: Brewers in Braves, 6:15 p.m. Milwaukee RHP Chase Anderson (2-0, 3.20) against Atlanta RHP Kevin Gausman (2-3, 4.50). TV: FOX. Radio: AM-620.