Braves blow lead late, but a pair of web gems and Michael Harris II saved the day

The game very nearly got away from them, but Atlanta proved their mettle against the Marlins with key plays late on Wednesday.
Miami Marlins v Atlanta Braves
Miami Marlins v Atlanta Braves / Kevin D. Liles/Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

When the Atlanta Braves were up 3-1 in the ninth inning with Raisel Iglesias on the mound, things felt pretty safe as the Marlins had done little to threaten the Braves to that point. However, the game went sideways in a hurry as Iglesias gave up three straight singles to load the bases and then a bouncer to Matt Olson took a funny hop, bounced off of him, and then went straight into the camera well to allow a pair of runs to score. Just like that, Miami had runners on first and third with no outs and the game was tied.

The Braves would not be denied, however. After some key defensive plays and some heroics from Michael Harris II in extra innings, the Braves emerged victorious over the Marlins by a final score of 4-3.

Braves salvage win over Marlins thanks to late game web gems and clutch hit from MH2

The Braves were certainly in a pickle after that unfortunate sequence of events in the ninth inning. Iglesias clearly didn't have his best stuff and the Marlins had a golden scoring opportunity with Jesus Sanchez at the plate who had crushed a homer earlier. However, Sanchez instead hit a check swing bunt to the mound that Iglesias fielded very cleanly, held the speedy Jazz Chisholm at third, and then got the first out.

The second out was even more spectacular as a ground ball straight to Orlando Arcia allowed him to throw a quick strike home to get Chisholm and keep the game tied. The sequence had some shades of the play Dansby Swanson made against the Diamondbacks back in 2018 (although their next web gem on Wednesday would be even closer to that play). After a strikeout ended the threat and the Braves squandered a chance to end the game in the ninth when Ronald Acuna Jr. grounded into a double play, the Braves' defense had to conjure up one more big play.

The Marlins were able to move their ghost runner (still a terrible rule) over to third and then former Braves catcher Christian Bethancourt hit a hot shot grounder to Austin Riley. Riley fielded it cleanly, spun and threw from his knees, and nailed Nick Gordon at home. The Marlins would load the bases, but a Jazz Chisholm strikeout gave the Braves the chance they needed to end the madness.

And end it they did. Ronald Acuna Jr. started the inning at second base and Michael Harris II, who had a tremendous game with three hits altogether, lifted the second pitch he saw to the left-center gap. Somehow, the ball found grass and the Braves were able to walk the Marlins off. Sure, the Braves should have won the game handily without all of the heroics, but where is the fun in that?

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