Florida 5 Atlanta 4


It’s pretty much impossible for any single player to win a game by himself. It’s sure possible for one to lose one, however, especially if he’s a starrting pitcher. Hence, Eli Marrero and Mike Hempton.

Marrero had a tremendous game, going 3-4 with a three-run homer (which opened the Braves’ scoring and tied the game at the time) and a double, and also threw out a runner at the plate. Hampton walked in a run in the first, then allowed two more runs to score in the inning. And after Marrero had tied the game in the fourth, Hampton allowed two solo homers in the fifth to give the Marlins the margin of victory.

The Braves had eleven hits, but left runners on all night, including seven in scoring position; there were two runners on base when Julio popped out to end the game. I don’t like to point my finger in this instance, but Nick Green’s 0-5 hitting second hurt a lot. Eddie Perez’s pathetic old man hanging around for one last paycheck schtick didn’t help matters either. Estrada pinch-hit in the game; I assume his leg is hurt enough that he’s having trouble crouching.

The Braves did get good bullpen work from Gryboski, Alfonseca, Reitsma, and Cruz. Yes, Cruz pitched the ninth in a one-run game. I’m as shocked as anyone.

8 thoughts on “Florida 5 Atlanta 4”

  1. This talk about trading Ortiz seems premature to me, unless you are ready to count out this season. If you trade him, you have to leave Hampton in the rotation. That’s not a very good tradeoff. Plus, you will be relying on Byrd who has two starts (both admittedly good) after not pitching for a year–it usually takes pitchers a full year after they come back to really be the same. So I don’t know how much you can expect from him. If you trade Ortiz, what happens to this pitching staff? (And granted, Ortiz has been inconsistent, but at least he is capable of getting people out.)

  2. The AJC had tongue in cheek comment about pitching a reliever in the first inning then having Hampton pick it up in the second inning. Might not be such a bad idea.

    AJC had an interview with Smoltz. More whining about why he should start. What to you all think? Should the Braves just let him start until his arm falls off? Or do you think that they don’t want him to vest for next years contract?

  3. All this “trouble in the first inning” talk makes it seem like Hampton just has to solve this one little problem and everything will be fine. Actually, he just stinks and is looking increasingly like a current and especially future albatross. By the way, Sutton helpfully advised early in last night’s game that Hampton is giving up 60% of his runs in the first three innings, which is a hilarious use of stats since he averages just over 5 a start.

    I also want to underline the fact that Cox intentionally walked the bases full after falling behind Cabrerra 2-0 in the first. He should never, ever, ever fill the bases with Hampton pitching, who was wild even when he was good. Why is it that I can sit on a couch 2500 miles away, see four fingers go up, and say to my wife, ‘Hampton’s about to walk in a run’, yet the idea doesn’t quite reach the dugout?

  4. I’ll reiterate what others have said; it wasn’t the worst loss in the world, as the team (sans Hampton) looked like they were making an attempt to win.

    For those without TS, Cruz was flat-out filthy last night. Visions of ace pitching flutter through my head…

  5. I love the verbal jab Chipper made at Hampton in the AJC. Hampton saying he needs a kick in the face to start pitching well, then Chipper suggesting that Leo kick Hampton in the face in the bullpen before the game just to get it out of the way.

    Cruz was indeed nasty last night. Maybe Bobby and Leo are warming up to him or vice versa. With how effective Cruz has been at times, one can only assume that philosophical differences have led to his lack of use. Again, Andruw taking Manzanillo the other way rather than just striking out was an encouraging sign and nearly tied the game. I just hope it was intentional. Like Mac suggested, we need a healthy Giles to get the offense back in full gear.

  6. Managed to get down to the stadium last night, but missed the top of the first inning. Everything else I saw added up to what I’d call a quality win.

    Lots of hard hit right-at-ems, and nice defense on the Marlins side was the difference in the game. Andrew’s opposite field out with men on was a Cabrera gem from a double.

    Another vote for the Cruz performance from me too. That guy may have the best MPH/LBS rating ever. Do they track that one over at Prospectus?

  7. I was lucky enough to be in the 4th row in the section next to the scouts. For most of the game they looked very bored, like they had seen about 200,000 games and this was just one more. When Cruz came out to pitch, you would have thought their next paycheck depended on an accurate report.

  8. From the Upper Tier it looked like the guy was still out on the botched double play in the 1st inning :P. After Eli gunned down Cabrera at home, I thought momentum would swing our way, especially against Howard, who has an ERA over 6, or maybe even against Benitez, who is long overdue for about 5 blown saves, but the hitters just didn’t get it done with guys on base.

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