Matt Holliday pads Cardinals’ lead with solo homer

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David Ross gave the Braves an early 2-0 lead with a two-run homer, but the Cardinals have scored four unanswered to go up 4-2 as we go into the top of the seventh.

Chipper Jones committed a throwing error in the top of the fourth inning which opened the door for the Cardinals to score three runs. Allen Craig delivered an RBI double while Yadier Molina had an RBI ground out and David Freese had a sacrifice fly.

The Braves had two runners on with one out in the bottom of the fourth after Freddie Freeman singled and David Ross reached on a bunt single, but Andrelton Simmons bunted and was called out for interference. Watch the play below.

On the TBS broadcast, the announcers said that Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez called for a safety squeeze and that it was not the result of a missed sign by Simmons. It’s possible he was just covering for his rookie shortstop, but it’s still a bad play with the pitcher on deck. Kris Medlen struck out swinging and the rally was snuffed out.

The Cardinals stretched their lead to 4-2 with a solo home run by Matt Holliday in the top of the sixth. Kyle Lohse was pulled in the bottom of the inning with a runner on first and one out, but Lance Lynn was able to get David Ross to fly out to right center to end the threat. To the seventh we go.

Umpire ejects Adrian Beltre for moving on-deck circle

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As far as ejections go, this is one of the stranger ones you’ll hear about. Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre was ejected in the bottom of the eighth inning of a game his team trailed at the time 18-6. Beltre was a few feet away from the circle towards home plate and was asked by Marlins pitcher Drew Steckenrider to get into the circle. So rather than step a few feet back to his right, Beltre picked up the circle and dragged it to where he was. And that got him ejected by second base umpire Gerry Davis. Manager Jeff Banister was also ejected after having a word with Davis.

Here’s a video from Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports:

Beltre, by the way, went 3-for-3 with a walk, a pair of doubles, and a solo home run. He’s now four hits away from 3,000 for his career.

Video: Phillies prospect J.P. Crawford hits an inside-the-park grand slam

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Phillies shortstop prospect J.P. Crawford’s stock has fallen sharply this season. He had an abysmal first three months, batting .203/.321/.276 in 291 plate appearances. Baseball America rated him the 12th overall prospect in baseball going into the season and rated him No. 92 in their midseason top 100. It was bad.

Since the calendar turned to July, however, Crawford has been more like his normal self. In 92 at-bats this month entering Wednesday night’s action, he was hitting .300/.391/.650 with six home runs, 13 RBI, 18 runs scored, and a terrific 15/12 K/BB ratio.

Crawford padded his stats more on Wednesday night as he circled the bases for an inside-the-park grand slam. Via the IronPigs Twitter:

Crawford was actually dead-to-rights at home, but he fooled the catcher with a great late slide.

Crawford finished 1-for-3 with a walk along with the slam on the night as the IronPigs beat the Gwinnett Braves 8-2.