134 thoughts on “Endless April road trip almost over game thread: Braves at Marlins, April 17”

  1. Some Braves-related KLaw answers from today’s chat:

    On Jason Heyward: I had him ranked behind Heyward, who looks like a potential 3 or 4 hitter who’ll hit for average, post a great OBP, and hit 30-40 HR while playing great RF defense.

    Other than that, though, Jason’s not very good.

    On Tommy Hanson: I thought I was being aggressive putting him at #66 on my top 100 prospects list, but if anything I was light.

    Encouraging, to be sure, but unless he’s actually scouted Hanson’s games (which I doubt), doesn’t it look like Keith is a bit prone to making rash swings in judgment based on small a sample size? I mean, that seems to be a pretty big opinion shift based on, what, 3 starts?

  2. Meanwhile, in Chad Ford’s chat:

    Koron(Savannah,GA): As one of the 19 remaining Hawks fans(according to Bill Simmons), what needs to happen for the Hawks to do the unthinkable, which is beat the Celtics.

    Chad Ford: Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce both have to go down with season ending injuries. This may be the most lopsided series in NBA history. The Celtics are one of the most dominate teams we’ve seen and the Hawks … if the weren’t in a historically bad Eastern Conference they’d be collecting lottery balls. This is not a playoff team. Quit congratulating yourself Atlanta. You have 12 lottery picks on your roster and you can’t put up a winning record in a terrible conference.

    Which Hawk pooped in Chad’s mess kit?

  3. He means the most-lopsided series since the last time the Hawks were in one (1999 vs. the Sprewell Knicks).

    If the Hawks win a game, I’ll consider it a small victory. I saw them play in New Jersey a few weeks ago & I’ve seen more defensive effort in old ABA games.

    The Nets had about 15 dunks in half-court situations where the player (Carter, Jefferson, whomever) drove in from the perimeter. The Hawks scored 70 points in the first half & still lost. It was shockingly awful.

    I’m rooting for the Hawks & all, but…

  4. Ouch….that was harsh from Ford. I think if your a Hawks fan, you have a lot to be happy about. I’m a Magic fan since I live here in Fl, but I’ve watched them play the Hawks a few times this year and they look like a good young team. The will get thier asses handed to them by the Celtics, but the future looks good.

  5. Stu,

    Gotta be honest…Chad Ford’s assessment is dead on. And even if Pierce and KG go down with season ending injuries, I would still give the Celtics better than a punchers chance.

    The question isn’t whether this will be over in a 4 game sweep, the real question is whether the Hawks will manage to lose by say less than 15 points in one of the games. That would be a moral victory.

  6. Keith invited me to scout a game with him last year and it was interesting to watch him work. He was very candid, and he patiently answered my questions about what he does and how he evaluates players.

    I think Keith is just not afraid to change his opinion. He weighs all of the evidence: stats, personal scouting, and talking to other scouts. What he doesn’t do is watch a player go 0-4 and decide he’s bad. I suspect he would not have made the comment about Hanson unless he had seen him. The guy is a traveling beast.

  7. I didn’t say Ford wasn’t correct, Alex, but I think he’s unnecessarily harsh. The “Quit congratulating yourself” bit just seemed to come out of nowhere. Nobody thinks the Hawks can play with the Celtics, but does he really believe the situation now isn’t better than it’s been for years in Atlanta? I don’t see what the harm is in feeling like your team has accomplished something this year, if you’re a Hawks fan.

  8. Thanks, JC, and I realize he travels a lot, but it seems to me that most of his recent travels—at least those from which his scouting reports are posted on his ESPN blog—have been out west.

  9. This just in from DOB:

    The press release from Braves: Atlanta Braves right-handed pitcher Peter Moylan was examined by Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., yesterday. Dr. Andrews confirmed the diagnosis made by Braves team physicians in Atlanta, which found that the ulna collateral ligament in Moylan’s right elbow has been compromised by a bone spur. Moylan, who presently has some swelling and limited range of motion, will continue treatment to rehab his elbow over the next two weeks. He will then be re-evaluated, with UCL reconstruction an option at that time.

    If Moylan doesn’t feel better in 2 weeks, which he probably won’t, he’ll likely have Tommy John Surgery.

    Insert expletives here.

  10. ‘R’ is coming up, Mac. I think you have a tough choice to make, as to who’s gonna make that youtube video…

    Going to the game tonight. Ah, Dolphin Stadium. Your confines, so hideously teal. Your seats, so inevitably wet with rain before anyone sits in them. It’s a good thing so few people will sit in them, I suppose.

  11. I know that, but his tendon is “compromised”, not torn, by a bone spur. If his tendon isn’t torn, they won’t need to reconstruct — they’ll go in, remove the spur, and make sure the tendon is in the right position.

  12. DOB went on to say this:

    For those trying to read between the lines, it does sound like reconstructive surgery will be necessary, more likely than not certainly.

    Just got off the phone with Frank Wren, who gave me this:

    “We’re diisppointed, for both Peter and our club,” the GM said. “Because he was an important part of our bullpen. We hope that the rehab in two weeks will improve his chances of returning this year, but understand that they may not be possible.”

    I asked him if Braves have the relievers to pick up the slack and fill in or if they’ll look to make a trade, and he said:

    “I think we do have depth in our bullpen, but we’re continually looking to improve that area.”

    Folks, it’s just not easy to replace a guy like Moylan, especially not this early in a seaeson. Teams aren’t looking to move top-flight relieivers like him.

    “Lot of innings, and tough to replace a guy like that,” Wren said. “You don’t worry about matchups, because he does well against righies and lefties. Valuable guy to a team.”

  13. Hm. I guess I should’ve refreshed before posting. Of course, I have to post something dumb in the midst of terrible, terrible news.

    From the blog:

    [i]Miami: Braves reliever Peter Moylan might require reconstructive elbow surgery, but will wait two weeks to determine if that season-ending procedure is necessary.[/i]

  14. I agree with Mac, unless they are being awfully politically correct and euphemistic in the use of “compromised.”

    Like, “After the explosive charge went off, the bridge was compromised.”

    No, dumb ass, the bridge was wrecked.

  15. I think the new standard on TJ surgery is that if they are going to bother opening you up, why not throw in a new UCL. The tendon is like a rubber band that gets stretched too much, so they just replace it.

  16. I heard Mike Hampton was so upset about the Moylan injury, he cryed and damanged a tear duct, which puts his rehab back about a month

  17. At the rate they’re losing pitchers, the Braves will have to get Bruce Hampton to pitch for them.

  18. I’m going to try to be positive for a second…

    Blaine Boyer looked really good last night.

  19. yep Stockman better be up and soon. Is Fuentes still on the market? If so eat the salary and bring him on board

  20. Bruce Hampton! Wahhhh….

    Right, the Hampton Grease Band would make a better middle relief corp—and one of the guys is dead.

  21. Right, the Hampton Grease Band would make a better middle relief corp—and one of the guys is dead.

    Or, as Wikipedia puts it, “Lead guitarist Harold Kelling died in May, 2005. He was the musical genius of the band.”

  22. Just a thought, so dont throw anything…..how about moving Smoltz back to closer? Is it easier to trade for starting pitching than for relievers? If he is laboring to go 6 innings, maybe the closers role would be better suited for him at this age.

  23. Actually, the Colonel doesn’t have a bad arm. One day we were having a game of catch, and I got down in a crouch and said, “Okay, bring it here,” patting my mitt, and he threw this tremendous 12-to-6 curve ball that snapped right into the pocket. “Where’d you learn to throw that?” I asked. “It’s easy, Remy,” he said. “It’s just like pulling down a window shade.”

  24. I have no doubt that Hampton can pull a Smoltz…assuming one of Hampton’s hamstrings is named “Smoltz.”

  25. According to DOB, Cox called a team meeting for 5:15 and kicked all outsiders out of the clubhouse.

  26. Good. I can only assume he’s performing guerrilla surgery on our downed relievers’ elbows. He’s ending this mess right now.

  27. I spent some time with Col. Bruce when I was working in a recording studio and that man knows more about baseball than anyone I’ve ever met in person. To call it encyclopedic would be an understatement.

    And yes, he did correctly guess my birthday.

  28. And Moylan’s overuse of 90 innings last year comes back to haunt the Braves.

    Are bone spurs enhanced by pitching too much? Serious question. I too am not a doctor.

    If you snap a tendon, sure that’s pitching. But a bone spur?

  29. Maybe more innings creates more friction and greater likelihood of trouble? Seems like something bound to happen at some point, anyway, at least as I understand it, which may not be very well.

  30. Didn’t Smoltz complain of bone spurs before he had his surgery? Or was it chips floating inside his elbow?

  31. ..and SportsSouth has decided just not to air commercials tonight I guess.

  32. Ok, so I am trying my damndest to watch the game on MLB, the package I paid way too much for, and instead, they keep torturing me on a continuous loop with this evil loser playing ‘Joe fan’ doing some MLB Ad highlight thing.

    Anyone know what’s going on? It does appear the game is in fact going on??????

  33. Alex R.,

    Thus far, the Braves have hit two doubles, one triple, and Smoltz struck out the side in the top of the first. Braves lead 2-0.

  34. Kotsay with a hard-hit ball off Luis Gonzalez’s glove on the track… ruled a triple.

  35. Gonzo absolutely butchered that ball out there. A gift triple is just what Kotsay’s numbers needed.

  36. I just called MLB.com about the problem, and they said they are having “server maintenance” and that I should try checking the game in another 30 minutes…great service.

  37. I am having the same thing as Tom L. and CANNOT get the game on MLB.TV.

    I will be calling these idiots tomorrow. I can follow the game on their game track thing, but I can’t watch it live. This aint what I paid for.

    At least we’re actually winning a game.

  38. Two things:

    1) I do not recall this many pitcher injuries when we had Camp Leo.

    2) When was the last time we had a 5+ game winning streak. To win, you have to get streaky i.e. See o7 Rockies.

    a) what was the longest win streak last year?
    b) prior years?

  39. Deadly slider tonight, can’t feel good on that sore shoulder though having to throw it every pitch.

  40. This is fantastic, just what we need. Son of aQ!!:kj;wld fjdsa

    This is going to be a long ass season.

  41. #79 – tone it down there big guy

    Smoltz looks like that shoulder is bothering him pretty good

  42. The Marlins announcers say that Smoltz, despite having struck out seven, has thrown more pitches than the other guy, whose name I forget.

  43. in regards to mlbtv,
    i clicked on the 800k feed and it worked. the 400k feed gave me the same thing youre experiencing. hope that helps.

  44. Hello!

    Man, Chipper is the team this year. It’s great to see some other guys step in to give him a hand tonight!

  45. John has headed for the clubhouse – good work John and Bobby for getting him out of there

    Now Ohman is up

  46. Only 81 pitches thus far for Smoltzy. I dunno. It’d be real hard to pull him the way he’s going tonight.

    But it sounds like they’re pinch hitting for him.

    Hopefully he gets 3000 in Atlanta. :-)

  47. With this one firmly in grasp, I’ll focus on The Office. New episode, kids!

  48. Does it look to anyone else like Smoltz has dropped his arm angle down a little bit? Like more 3/4 delivery? Especially the fastball in that last Adino at-bat.

    I seem to remember that he dropped his arm angle down during the end of the ’99 season when he was hurting but manned-up big time and pitched well anyway.

  49. Smoltz got side armed at the end of last season also, but didnt look like it to me tonight

    welcome Mr Pythagorus tonight

  50. Man, Kelly has some amazing bat speed. I don’t notice it when he’s striking out 80% of the time…obviously

  51. 113 – With this bullpen, it’s never “firmly in grasp.” I’m staying tuned.

  52. way to hit tex……………….i’ll be happy when(if) i’m wrong, but this guy is sucking the air out of the stadium.

  53. Updating The Office, Michael has once again broken up with Jan and is taking referrals from employees on who he should date.

  54. Resop with an 8 run lead looks pretty sharp – Bobby may get a little greedy with him now

  55. So all it takes for Resop and Ohman to pitch well is an 8 run lead.

    Glad that’s been cleared up.

  56. “Although he missed all of the 2000 season recovering from Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery and then spent most of the next four seasons as a reliever, it appears Smoltz will need the sixth fewest innings to reach the 3,000-strikeout mark. Only Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, Nolan Ryan, Curt Schilling and Roger Clemens needed fewer innings. “

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