Early Game Thread: Orioles at Braves, June 25

In case I don’t get to it tomorrow. Game starts 1:15 ET, 12:15 CT, Fox. Jorge Vasquez has been sent down to make room for Colon.

147 thoughts on “Early Game Thread: Orioles at Braves, June 25”

  1. I’m setting the over/under for homeruns allowed by Colon at 3. Anybody take the under?

  2. let’s gamble, i’ll take the under. they said his stuff has been looking great in the minors of late, so hopefully it will carry over.

  3. FWIW, Colon had 3 appearances during his brief trip to the the minors (2 with Mississippi, 1 with Richmond). He threw 9.2 IP, struck out 8, and allowed 6 H, 1 ER, 0 HR, and 3 BB. That gives him a minor league ERA of 0.93 this year with good peripherals (in a ridiculously small sample, of course). That doesn’t mean that he will pitch well with Atlanta, but it does provide some hope that he is not injured (as Mac had hypothesized at one point).

    Colon also only surrendered 4 home runs last year in 96 IP (between AA, AAA, and the majors), allowing no home runs in his brief major league time (19 IP). He also had a respectable BB rate in the minors last year, walking 22 in 77 IP.

    So while Colon has been wild and taterific in his 18 IP this year for Atlanta, he is potentially capable of better.

    However, he still has a grand total of only 37 career IP in the majors (along with 76 IP at AAA). Not many pitchers with so little experience pitching at a high level are good bets to do well against a decent lineup, and Colon is only an okay prospect. The classic rookie pitching mistake is to trying to be too perfect with pitches, fall behind in the count, and then groove a pitch that gets clobbered. Davies, who is certainly a better pitching prospect than Colon, has been having difficulty with throwing too many balls and leaving his strikes up in the strike zone.

    So no, I’m not certain I want to take the under. Colon also isn’t fully stretched out, so he probably won’t go too much more than 4 IP even if he pitches decently.

    James started the year in A-ball, and Greisinger’s a 29-year old with a career ERA of 5.51 (and bad peripherals) who gave up 22 HR in 125 innings last year. So it’s not like the Braves have many good alternatives.

  4. Chuck James 2005 (A,AA) 16G 84 1/3 innings
    7-4 1.92 era 56 h 21 bb’s 3 hrs 116 K’s.

    I have heard he is almost unhitable against left handed hitters. If not sooner perhaps a situational reliever when rosters expand.

  5. I know James’ stats in A ball are ridiculous (and combined with AA seem so as well). My question is what are James’ stats like in AA ball exclusively?

    If his stats aren’t terribly good, pitching him over Colon may be a choice of which poison to drink. But I still like the odds of James going 5 or 6 innings, while as Joel says, it is unlikely that Colon will go more than 4 (if that). And going three with our bullpen makes a rout much more likely (and also increases the chances of other losses since the more our ‘pen pitches, the more we lose).

    So, I continue to wonder just how much the organization must dislike him. Perhaps, I’m wrong and it isn’t that the Braves dislike him, but rather that the Braves are leery of beginning another young Brave’s clock at this point.

  6. I would guess that they don’t like him very much. From what little I have heard about his attitude. He doesn’t sound like the Braves’ type of player. If they’re looking to trade him, then there’s no good reason to throw him into the fire anytime soon. I’d think he’s better off blowing away AA hitters than potentially getting knocked around in the majors since there should be no real question about his legitimacy as a prospect.

    I think there is also some general reluctance to use up that spare spot on the 40-man roster. There are some tradeable guys not on it (Jurries, Timmons, Minor), so a deal where the Braves don’t give up anyone that is for a major leaguer doesn’t seem out of the question.

  7. Chuck James Mississippi Braves 05/13 06/24 4 wins 0 losses 2.74 era 9 Games 42.2 innings 36 hits 3 hr’s 13 bb’s 57 K’s

  8. I understand the attitude concerns and all, but with stats like that unless he’s killing homeless guys or attending KKK meetings between starts, I would be in no hurry to trade him. YMMV

    I’ll go out on a limb a predict a quality start for Colon today. I like the combination of an opponent who has never seen him and the extra effort he’ll put out trying to prove he belongs in the big leagues.

    O’s start a lefty which makes it a Marte day. Love to see that.

  9. ATLANTA (June 25) – The Braves optioned third baseman Andy Marte to Triple-A Richmond on Saturday and recalled right-hander Roman Colon, giving Atlanta a 13-man pitching staff.

    Ok That is better than Vazquez

  10. I can’t say that I love it, but it makes a lot of sense. They could still DL furcal and bring Marte back up right away (he says, with little hope of it actually happening).

  11. We have stinky in the lineup today… Jordan should not play for anything in the world.

  12. Clarification: It only makes sense given the frustrating commitments to Furcal and Gryboskolbernero (and, no, that probably won’t get old for me… I feel exactly the same no matter which of them comes into a game).

  13. Furcal still has value to the team. He’s great in the field, and he’d be great hitting lower in the order where he doesn’t get that extra AB a game, preferably ahead of someone who has a lot of GIDPs that he can reduce with steals. He’d also be good off the bench in a pinch run / defensive replacement role.

    Having a 4th outfielder has some value, so I wouldn’t send Jordan down unless you pull up a replacement.

    Gryboski, Kolb, and Bernero are the obvious choices. Gryboski’s just bad and needs to be off the team. Kolb needs regular work to regain his form, and he’ll get more of that in Richmond. I don’t know what’s up with Bernero. He looked really good early in the year, so it might serve him to stay up, or he might need to gain confidence against AAA bats. All of them make more sense than Marte.

    The only way this makes since is if they think Betemit will stay hot, and they want Marte to get regular work.

  14. I think Marte still needs time to develop. He doesn’t have the poise of Betemit of KJ. He’ll be great, he’s just at a different place than they are right now.

  15. I agree about asking WHY the Braves are batting Betemit 8th? It makes no sense to me. The guy has aearned a trip to spots 2-6 at least.

    Regarding 13 pitchers, I am torn.

    Because of so many injuries, you almost understand it. Then again, if we would at least get rid of Kolbb & Bernero, we wouldn’t need 13 pitchers.

    As for suckowski, I hate him but he showed me he can START an inning the other night and do better. The bottom line is he’s a passably decent reliever with NO pressure on him. I agree with Mac–we just need to stop using Suckowski with inherited runners because they always score–ALWAYS.

    As for Brian Jordan, I am tired of his mediocrity but he’s a passable 4th outfielder and frankly, it’s not a bad thing to have at least a couple of veterans around just for clubhouse purposes. On the flipside, B illy McCarthy would be aof higher quality as a 4th outfielder.

    By the way, if Furcal keeps swinging at the 1st pitch again to start again, I might just SHOOT him and that will solve the Betemit-Marte problem so they both can play asnd Furcal and is .222 average and free swinging approach can lie in a hospital somewhere. I hear they have a bed ready for him, Bernero and Kolbb at Piedmont.

    NO WAY Furcal is a Brave next year and will ANYONE miss him?

  16. Alex: If you shot Furcal you’d go to jail and that would keep you from cluttering up our message boards with your rants. Big win! Keep a lid on it, okay?

  17. I still like Furcal. I’m not about to kill him as some would have it, for one bad year. He’ll be gone and doing well for someone else this time next year. We probably should and will trade him, but I’ll miss him.

    Call it what you want…

  18. JoeyT: Having a 4th outfielder has some value, so I wouldn’t send Jordan down unless you pull up a replacement.

    Heck, having THREE outfielders would be better than we have now.

  19. The guys on Fox said the scoreboard cost $15 million. Frankly, I think it’s overwhelming and a bit annoying.

    Should they have dumped the scoreboard and kept J.D. Drew two more years?

  20. And he’d look pretty funny just standing up there above the hitter’s background.

  21. Gryboski’s just bad and needs to be off the team.

    Dude’s got a 1.80 ERA. I think he’ll be around a while.

    Big K for Colon there.

  22. Nice! At least Colon hasn’t let the lack of fan confidence affect him today.

    I’m surprised no one said they hated him or wanted him dead before the game.

  23. Atlanta team stats from ESPN.com:

    .271/.339/.455 vs. Left
    .251/.318/.412 vs. Right

    Those were some clutch strikeouts from Colon. I had no idea he’d get out of there without a run.

  24. Gryboski’s ERA is — as you know — not a proper reflection of his pitching. Typical Gryboski situation over the first six weeks of the season:

    He comes in with runners on first and second, one out. He immediately gives up a double, the runner from second scores. Then he gets a grounder, scoring the second inherited runner. The next batter pops up. Gryboski winds up with a line of 0.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R.

  25. [i]Dude’s got a 1.80 ERA. I think he’ll be around a while.


    ERA doesnt tell anyone anything. Inherited runners scored does…

  26. It’s in the ESPN splits page… near the botoom. Last I looked, it wasn’t pretty at all. And you’ll also note the big 0 under double plays.

  27. Oops, sorry. Not under splits, just at the bottom of the pitching stats page.

    He’s allowed 10 of 19 inhereted runners to score.

  28. But what are the left/right splits like recently? Early in the season, Mondesi and Jordan were playing every day, and they could hit lefties a little and righties not at all. Now, they have Johnson playing every day, Langerhans playing most of the time against righthanders, but Jordan, who sucks, against lefties. Plus Estrada is much weaker from this side.

  29. Again, that’s the best part of being down on players. It can be both humbling and pleasurable to be proven wrong.

    Colon isn’t hate-worthy because he is young and clearly has good stuff. But I don’t think any of us had any good reason to think he was going to be this successful today.

  30. So that’s a license to make light of our chances for success? Just wondering…

  31. ERA doesnt tell anyone anything. Inherited runners scored does…

    So it’s Grybo’s fault Bobby keeps bringing him into tight spots and he allows inherited runners to score? How many times has he been brought in over the years with the bases loaded and less than two outs?

    As others have observed he’s more than acceptable when allowed start his own inning. He’s a poor choice for tight spots due to his wonky control and lack of a strikeout pitch. Again, he’s not going anywhere.

    Colon looks great…

  32. Being a fan is a license to make light of our chances for success. We have no affect on the outcome of the game. If I were at the park, I wouldn’t boo any of our players. But at home on my couch or here in front of my computer, I don’t think it’s so bad. Different people enjoy things differently. For some of us there is pleasure in venting.

  33. I’ll agree about Gryboski. I had lumped him in with Kolb and Bernero, and that’s probably not fair. If he can be used effectively in certain situations, then he should be used that way. And maybe he could have some value.

  34. I don’t argue against you being able to do what you want. I just think it’s a little ungrateful and short-sighted to vent on this team, one that’s given us so much as fans. Let’s not get into this though. I repsect your freedom to do as you please. Let’s just disagree.

  35. Check, Raoul :)

    Interesting note about Gryboski is that he’s awful with nobody on base (1.079 OPS). And reasonably decent with runners on (.648 OPS) Weird… and I’m not sure what to make of it. I should stop looking at all these splits, my tiny little brain is swimming.

  36. Well, I’ll be eating some crow this afternoon…Colon seems to have acquitted himself in fine fashion. Let’s hope the bullpen will follow in similar style. And it seems about time for another Andruw bomb (otherwise we’ll go back to hating him).

  37. Mac, you may kill the Quizno’s ad people. Not only have the resurrected that talking baby (both creepy AND stupid), but they got rid of those little rodents… also creepy and stupid, yet somehow tons of fun.

  38. What’s the significance of eating crow? Just an expression for unlikely events?

  39. A very quick google search shows unclear origins of using the phrase “eat crow” as an expression of humility for being very wrong about something. In 1888, an Atlanta Constitution article said it dated back to a story from the War of 1812 were an Amercian crossed British lines hunting, killed a crow, and then was forced to eat it upon being captured. It’s a nice story, but the phrase apparently didn’t come into common usage unitl the later part of the 1800’s, so who knows.

  40. I fixed it, Jeff. You had some coding problems. You put a Colon (ha!) instead of an equals sign, and you needed to put the URL in quotes.

  41. Thanks Jeff. I’m an English major, so I always have to know stuff like this. I even liked the geneaology of Humble Pie.

  42. Personally, I’m glad to have the respite from Turner South’s commercials: “This is Anthony . . . ” “This is Monica . . .” ” . . . Lucky, who now brings good mojo to the dojo.”


  43. I hate myself and I think I’m going to kill my self. “Start a little suicide.” Sorry, couldn’t resist the Elton John there.

  44. Dammit. I was hoping we had one more inning before having to face Julio and Ryan.

  45. Oh, Mac. When you go on your killing spree, please don’t forget Jared the Subway guy. Thank you in advance.

  46. Pass a little of that crow my way. Getting Julio in the game was apparently a good thing.

  47. Another wild pitch for a run. Great.

    I didn’t hear as I’m forced to watch West Coast games on Fox…Mariners and Padres next. Awesome!

  48. I don’t have a (major) problem with Jordan being on the roster (although I’d prefer McCarthy), nor do I have a problem with Bobby giving him starts. Bobby’s always given spot starts to everybody on the roster.

    What I have a problem with is batting him 6th. He’s got the lowest slugging percentage of anybody whose had anything resembling playing time on the team (Pena and Marte are below him, but HoRam and Eddie are above him!), and only Purcal and Mondesi have lower OBP. That just screams “#8 hitter” to me.

  49. I guess Langerhans didn’t break his wrist there. I’m betting Jordan has to start the next game or two though.

  50. If we hadn’t wasted a perfectly good AAAA spot on the AAA roster with the likes of Esix Snead, we could very well have a decent player available to take Jordan’s place. As it is right now, there really isn’t anyone I know of other than McCarthy. And his major league ceiling is above 4th OF so bringing him up to fill that role could stunt his development. Where do you find a decent right-handed platoon OF in the middle of the season?

  51. Another problem with getting rid of Jordan is that then you have no backup RF. And since your RF is your backup CF, well…

    Since he’s a recently converted infielder, I tend to doubt that Johnson could play RF or CF very well. I can’t see putting Marte anywhere in the OF besides LF, either. And since Johnson and Langerhans are both playing well enough that they should be starting most games, as creynolds says, you really don’t want Marte or McCarthy sitting on the bench. Better they play every day at AAA.

  52. Marcus is in a collision, and the other guy gets the worst of it? That never happens.

  53. How did Giles not get hurt on that? Wow. For once, he has good luck in something like that.

  54. How pathetic is this? After all that, they’re just going to blow it in the ninth.

  55. Reitsma’s actually seemed to be making good pitches, but everything’s finding a hole.

  56. Reitsma looks a little over worked. We need a guy that can come in and blow it past people.

  57. Bernero will stick around for a while, mostly because he does have some starting experience and with two guys in the rotation now who are career relievers, you need that long guy in the pen who can throw two to three innings if need be. Remember, before his last outing, he’d come in in the fifth inning twice before.

  58. Reitsma deserved much better. A seeing-eye single to the first batter, a bloop single, a hard hit single, an “out” that Betemit threw almost into Matos, and a double play that just almost got turned. Shoot, if Betemit makes the throw, the game’s over on Palmeiro’s liner right to Furcal who is playing at normal depth instead of double play depth. Gosh, I hate this game sometimes.

  59. I just realized the game was on local ESPN Radio…Andruw’s homer was the only play I heard…well worth the wait! He’s on fire!

  60. Alright, this is it. I am absolutely SICK of Andruw Jones. Who does he think he is? I’ve got to sit at my TV and watch for 3, almost 4 seconds to see that he did indeed hit a game-winning home run. What, he can’t hit it a few feet more, make it obvious?

    OK, in all seriousness, I want to have his babies too. WOOOOOOOO!

  61. I probably just offended my neighbors with my SCREAM (“f*ck yeah!”), but it was totally worth it.

    Wreaksma sucks, but Andruw pulled his ass off the coals, today.

    Nice W.

  62. He’s been ridiculously hot before, but has he every been this hot? I don’t remember it. That’s, what, 11 homers in 14 games?

  63. That was a great HR to see on TV. (Probably in person, too.) The LF had a shot at the ball, went up the wall to try to catch it, and you could tell he missed by his body language. Good camerawork by Fox.

  64. [sarcasm]

    It’s all Andruw’s fault because he could’ve kept us from being in that situation anyway.


    Seriously, if we win the division again, it’s going to be because of him and Smoltz. One of them should get the MVP — barring the Cubs making a huge run and Derrek Lee winning the triple crown.

  65. I think we just set a Braves Journal record for the most posts in a 7 minute span. Well done, guys.

  66. Reitsma doesn’t suck. He didn’t even pitch that badly. He just had one of those games.

    That being said, I hope Vasquez’s good work in a tough situation gets him some more work.

  67. I’ve made a few Andruw jokes myself…if everyone could slow down the bandwagon for a sec I’m desperate to make amends and hop on….

  68. MVP has to be Derrek Lee right now. But the gap could close. AJ’s my MVP. Wow, we all have man crushes now.

  69. I don’t want to have his babies, but I might kiss him on the mouth if I had the opportunity.

  70. I defend Andruw a lot and it’s not so much a bandwagon. We just don’t think the criticism of Andruw is founded. He plays amazing Defense and puts up good numbers every year. People just expect too much.

  71. Maybe it’s just my residual hatred for Reitsma (for the times when you weren’t allowed to use the vowels in his name) over the past few years. He certainly doesn’t suck as much as Kolb.

    And the Andruw “pulling his ass off the coals” was totally sarcastic, but apparently not totally obvious.

    Mea culpa.

  72. That said, however, I don’t want to bear anyone’s children, or even kiss any men on the mouth.

    I’m not feeling superior, just relieved.

  73. Ed, you obviously haven’t had a good look at Andruw’s lips.

    Two stripper/hookers and a creepy fat guy can’t be wrong ;)

  74. Please, please, remember times like these when you want to trade my boy for the tattered remnants of Troy Percival, or in some other foolish deal. He’s a good player.

  75. Yankees fans would insist that they are doing us a favor for “taking on” Andruw’s salary and giving us “solid players” in return. Remember when the NY Post predicted a Andruw/Kevin Brown trade, with the Braves paying ALL of Brown’s salary? That didn’t quite happen.

  76. Reverse-jinx on Colon worked again!

    Third straight series win with a chance for a sweep. Is it too early to say that the Braves are back?

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