Rick Ankiel homers in 11th as Braves draw even with Giants

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We might just have ourselves a competitive series here.

The Braves evened things up with the Giants tonight — or this morning,
really — taking Game 2 by the score of 5-4 in 11 innings. They jumped
ahead thanks to a long solo home run by Rick Ankiel, which splashed down
in McCovey Cove beyond the right field fence.

The Giants were actually in great position to win in the bottom of the
10th inning, as Edgar Renteria led off with a bunt single, testing the
hobbled Troy Glaus at third base. After Andres Torres sacrificed him
over to second base, Billy Wagner was removed from the game due to an
oblique injury. Kyle Farnsworth entered and hit Freddy Sanchez with a
pitch and walked Aubrey Huff to load the bases for Buster Posey. It pretty easy to think the worst.

Farnsworth was able to induce a groundball to Glaus at third, but instead of going the safe route and throwing home, he made the do-or-die decision to go for the double-play by throwing to second base. Incredibly, it worked. Just barely. Inning over. Without a doubt, the key play of the ballgame.

With the series now knotted up at 1-1, the Braves return home for Game 3 on Sunday. Tim Hudson will square off against Jonathan Sanchez.

The Phillies are considering making a play for Jake Arrieta

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Jon Heyman reports that the Phillies are considering free agent starter Jake Arrieta.

That may seem kind of weird on the surface given that the Phillies, as Heyman notes, are considered to be at least a year from contention. Thing is, though, we really never know for sure when a team will definitely be in contention, do we? We’ve seen a handful of teams’ rebuilding efforts bear competitive fruit ahead of schedule in recent years, including the current World Series champion Houston Astros. They made the dang playoffs a year after losing 92 games, when everyone thought their true competitive window was several years away. Arrieta’s Cubs were much the same way, improving by 24 wins in 2015 to make the playoffs, in large part because of . . . acquiring Jake Arrieta.

Whether Arrieta, who is coming off of a 14-10, 3.53 ERA season, would be interested in the Phillies is unknown, but if I’m a Phillies fan, I’m happy that my club is being aggressive and is at least considering it.