172 thoughts on “Oh no, Pujols game thread: April 27, Cards at Braves”

  1. One last note on drummers: You can like Springstein all you want, but Max Weinberg should be jailed for abusing his kit. He’s a great sidekick for Conan, but his drumming is impossible to listen to without wincing.

    As for greatest singing drummers: Terry Bozzio, hands down. He didn’t sing all that much, but his drumming was far superior to anything Phil Collins ever did, and his vocal tracks were always interesting.

  2. Continued from last thread: It’s really hard to make a Top 25 of all-time baseball players, but I don’t think you could argue against Pujols if you wanted to include him already… However, I still refuse to accept that he is fully human. I’m quite certain he was sired by Secretariat. Until I see a DNA test the only Hall of Fame I’d let him into is in Saratoga Springs.

  3. I hate Pujols.

    Dude is a douche and I’m convinced he’s currently 34.

    He played baseball in my high school athletic conference and went to community college 5 miles from my house. Posnanski article aside, the name isn’t great around here. He rivals Manny in looking at his shots. He completely ignores José Oquendo at third base, and watch the temper tantrum that he throws if he ever gets caught stealing.

    Also, I’ll fill everyone in on the worst kept secret outside of Missouri. St. Louis fans don’t even really like him. They cheer because he puts up god-like numbers, but they don’t like him. St. Louis fans liked Bo Hart. They liked freaking Jon Mabry. They loved David Eckstein. They don’t like Albert Pujols.

  4. Seriously? I know you live around there, Ethan, and maybe you know a lot of folks who hate him, but I just don’t believe that Cards fans as a whole don’t love Albert Pujols.

  5. I was in Seattle for their big 2001 season — I’m convinced I’ll never see anything like it again. Half a dozen position players and almost every pitcher on the team had career years, and they were just crushing people. Led the league in runs scored, fewest runs allowed, and fielding percentage.

    Pineiro was a mid-season callup and looked like he was going to lap the field. He had a nice, compact delivery that I thought would never betray him. But instead he got a little worse every year after ’01, until they finally dumped him. Another pitcher of great promise gone unfulfilled.

  6. That might have been a little strong. My own personal dislike was probably clouding the issue a bit.

    Cards fans, at least the ones I know/went to college with do like Pujols, but the distinction that I was trying to make was that almost all the love he gets is for the numbers that he puts up.

  7. @7

    I know that it’s tongue and cheek a bit, but you’d shocked the love that Eckstein, Aaron Miles, Yadier Molina, etc get.

    Had numerous arguments over who was better between Molina/McCann…as Molina is more “complete” and “tougher”

  8. When you say you “like” a player, it has to be based on his performance. In most cases, fans have no idea what a player is really like personally. Fans identify with someone like David Eckstein, I think in part because they think his “scrappiness” somehow confers more character on the player than those with great talent. But, Lenny Dykstra and Pete Rose were scrappy too and were pretty much scumbags.

  9. I like to have players on my team who produce, of course, but it doesn’t mean I have to love them. I like to root for people, not just numbers.

    Even if you don’t really know these guys, it doesn’t mean they don’t have an on-field or in-the-press personality that you may find attractive or repellent. To me, that’s part of what makes baseball fun.

    I was happy David Justice hit a WS-winning HR, but I never really liked him. Also, I’m glad I’ve only ever rooted against Barry Bonds.

    Guys who “overachieve” or who show lots of effort are always going to get more fan love—nothing wrong with that. Sometimes they happen to be great players (Pete Rose, who got plenty of love before the Bud Harrelson fight in ’73), other times they’re good players (Gary Matthews, a real hustler on some bad Atlanta teams), but a lot of times they can be something else (Keith Lockhart, just lucky to be on the team).

  10. Can we get our Kawakami money back?

    That move might look pretty dumb in a few months…especially for a team with very limited monetary flexibility.

    As I was listening to the game yesterday (I had a bachelor party all weekend, so I didn’t get to watch much of the games; had a lot of T and A in my face; boo hoo)…I was hoping Bobby would’ve pulled KK when he loaded the bases, as it sounded like he was done anyway…any thoughts there?

  11. @12

    That’s a fair point

    I’m backpedaling a bit now, and again, originally I probably didn’t phrase it as well as I’d like, but the point I was trying to make is that there are some parts of Pujols/his game that people around the area don’t like.

    However, as Mac and other pointed out, they are very easily overshadowed when he is among the league leaders in most offensive categories.

  12. “any thoughts there?”

    Yes; if I had lots of T & A in my face, I wouldn’t even listen to the Braves. You are way too into baseball.

  13. @16

    Strip club on Fri and Sat night (for you connosieurs: Southern Belles in Charleston, SC).

    During the game Sunday, we were headed back to ATL…listening via 580 out of Augusta, I believe.

  14. The lineup (per Carroll Rogers at AJC):

    1. Kelly Johnson 2B
    2. Yunel Escobar SS
    3. Chipper Jones 3B
    4. Kotchman 1B
    5. Francoeur RF
    6. Brandon Jones LF
    7. David Ross C
    8. Schafer CF
    9. Jurrjens

  15. Ububba,

    I agree with you and having Bonds on the team would be a problem. There are some guys that are clearly nasty people (Albert Belle, Bonds, etc.) and I have a hard time rooting for them. And in any group of 1500 people, you will find some that are nice, some that are assholes, and many in-between. The point is people often conflate ability with character or, the opposite, lack of ability with character. The point is, we really don’t know, in most cases, what these guys are like as human beings. At the same time, many people dislike players for being human beings; for example, I don’t think using steroids necessarily means that a player is a bad guy in the bigger scheme of things. They make mistakes like everyone else.

  16. I know a few Cardinals fans and they all love Pujols. They liked Eckstein too, which is deeply deeply annoying, but there was never any question about who made that team good and how awesome was their first basemen.

    Nobody has ever really sung Teixeira’s praises in the game, but when he was here, we all liked him. Now that he’s gone to the Yankees, it’s like he never existed. Very few of us know these guys at all, and it’s crazy to think you know any of them based on their on-field personas. The team you play for typically dictates how much folks like you, who likes you, and how they respond to you.

  17. Well, as we found out later, even though he was a Brave, Teixeira was “still a douche.”

  18. I took much pleasure in re-telling the Tex “still-a-douche” story to some Kool-Aid-drinking Yankee fans the other day.

    Marc,
    Right, but we all have our reasons for liking players and not liking them. They can be rational or just plain silly.

    I mean, I used to root for Rafael Ramirez because he was so goofy & unpredicable. He wasn’t any kind of great player, but (IMO) an entertaining guy on a fun, but flawed club. In some ways, he symbolized that team.

  19. Ububba,

    one of the top 5 baseball stories I’ve ever heard.

    RE Pujols:

    I’ll definitely admit my dislike isn’t completely rational. Still there though

  20. I’m probably gonna ruin it with my slipshod retelling, but I believe it involved someone who knew Tim Hudson texting him when Tex hit a home run (“TEX!!!!” or something of the like) and Hudson texting back, “Still a douche.”

  21. That was just good hitting there. They were all taking him the other way. Long inning, but JJ looked pretty good.

  22. He’s missing a lot more bats than usual…now we just need to work on getting the ball out of the infield.

  23. here’s what I love, the game is on two channels (espn and peachtree). Espn has the game blacked out in my area because it should be on a local channel for me since Im two hrs outside of ATL. However, Dish Network doesnt provide Peachtree. Im pissed off and screwed at the same time. Oh well, enjoy

  24. Anyone else wishing about now that Bobby hadn’t made Jurrjens throw 116 pitches his last start?

  25. This cardinals team is the epitome of a run producing ball club. The waste of space pendleton and Cox should be taking notes from LaRusa on how to teach your team to manufacture runs. This cardinals team has been fun to watch just through 2 innings. Taking the pitches they are given and hitting them to the opposite field. Watching the first 3 guys in the braves lineup is the polar opposite. Kelly Johnson is completely lost at the plate, he is quite possibly the worst leadoff hitter in the majors. Yunel takes poor swings on balls he should be driving and chipper has looked more and more lifeless this season than I’ve ever seen. Granted, he still is a great hitter but he seems content sometimes at just slapping pitches and grounding out, it’s infuriating to watch.

  26. #45 – and people here still hate paying him a little more than $1 mil per for two years

  27. Ross has looked good, but he still has a career average of .225.

    120 isn’t ideal, but it’s not going to make him walk Thurston ten days later. That’s on Jurrjens. Can everything be Bobby’s fault? I blame Bobby for Vini Lopez leaving Springsteen’s band. And I blame Wren for this earache I’ve got…

  28. Same exact over swing Yunel grounded out to third with his first at bat. These guys never learn

  29. sansho, yeah, I know. I liked the signing. I’m just saying, don’t expect him to hit like this, or even .300. He’s a valuable player (and thank god we signed him, we’d have somebody like Colina on the team) but he’s not as good as he’s shown.

  30. My first time seeing Jurrjens. Good stuff.

    Man KJ is struggling. Hopefully soon he becomes KJ the all star.

    Nice catch by Schafer. Loving ESPN right now even though I have to listen to Hershiser and Phillips.

  31. Ok I’ve seen some good pitching from Vasquez Moylan Gonzo and Sori and so far Jurrjens. How about some hitting.

  32. ughhh thats the type of shit right there from francoeur that a good manager wouldnt tolerate. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to teach your players situational hitting. Guy on first, 1 out… the one thing you don’t want to do at all cost is ground one to the 2B or SS… what does jeff do??? hits the ball right into the ground to the SS for a double play. It’s just bad bad bad baseball and it all starts with cox and pendleton

  33. CF Schafer
    1B Kotchman
    SS Escobar
    3B Chipper
    RF Francoeur
    LF Jones/Diaz
    C Ross
    2B KJ

    KJ will snap out of it, but right now, he’s making too many outs.

  34. That inning as more shaky. Lotta hard hit balls. But JJ got ahead in the count to everybody, IIRC, so there’s that.

  35. That was a REALLY nice play at SS.

    In fairness to the Braves offense, Piniero’s been throwing strikes tonight.

  36. First I had heard the Francouer/Jaramillo story. Dang ole Rudy putting his rep on the line big time. Of course if Frenchy does good then he becomes the Leo Mazonne of hitting coaches…. or is he already there?

  37. I hope Bobby has someone warming in the ‘pen in case Jurrjens gets over 100 pitches or if he gets in trouble.

  38. How much money would you give to have Chip Caray fired? (I would go as high as $500.) How much do you think it would take to make the Braves people consider it?

  39. omg what clown!!@~!~! GET HIM OUTT OF THERE!!! ugh johnson is terrible plain and simple

  40. Might as well let Schafer lead off for a night because he can’t fare much worse than KJ has recently … KJ needs a night off.

  41. Now THAT’s how you waste two baserunners!

    And Jon, it’s not your vocabulary that’s annoying.

  42. What’s up with Johnson and Escobar? I thought the Braves middle infield was a big plus at the plate and they’re anything but that.

  43. So at what point do you…

    1. decide 4/36 is still worthy of playing, much less hitting leadoff. Admittedly there aren’t many options but Kelly Johnson needs to be benched for a few days or moved down the order.

    2. Can Terry Pendleton. I think Chipper, Kotchman and Schafer are at least thinking about what they’re trying to do at the plate. Everyone else is just swinging.

  44. Double switch. KJ ‘hitting’ his way to platoondom.

    But do you bench him when any day you’ll get the good KJ back.

    Crap. c’mon Moylan

  45. Hey mac that’s why I changed it boss… no one else saw it. So regardless of whether or not you saw it, no one else did. I changed it within 10 seconds

  46. @106:

    1. I think that point is now, at least for a day. I remember Bobby did that for a day with Andruw early in the ’05 season and it woke him up.

    2. Probably past time for that. If a car salesman doesn’t sell, he’s pulled off the floor.

  47. Who else thinks Cox needs to be fired??? Anyone? It’s just time to move on plain and simple, he doesn’t help this team. His managing tactics are old, out dated and are hurting this team more than they are helping this team. This team is filled with young guys who need a hands on young take action orientated manager. Not one that takes a hands off let the players play attitude

  48. The last week or so, Kotch has looked comfortable … for the first time since he joined the team. Just need some more power from him.

  49. Maybe bashing TP is too much, but he is the hitting coach. I suspect someone has to be held accountable. However, should anyone have to tell major league hitters to swing at strikes, work the count, use all fields and study the tendencies of the pitchers?

  50. Kotch is looking pretty good to me. Made some nice plays in Cincy. Awkward looking at the plate.

    I’ll take high average, high obp, lots of doubles and a dozen homers from him.

  51. Except it was slightly different, involving a home plate umpire making the questionable ball/strike call.

  52. Good news … he got on base. Bad news … runners on first and second for Yunel to GIDP.

    EDIT: Maybe not. At least he gave Chipper a chance. Such are my diminished expectations with Yunel up and at least one man on.

  53. Yunel is not a 2 hitter… plain and simple. Cox has mismanaged this team for years now

  54. Mac

    it’s beyond typical… that at bat by kotchman deserves a post with the most explict vulgar foul language… that alone can explain the ineptness of this team in tight situations at the plate when the game is on the line. This team has not a single player who can be considered “clutch”. And that is exactly why this team will never be better than a .500 club.

  55. If I were a pitcher, I wouldn’t throw Escobar anything near the plate on the first pitch.

  56. How about… they lack a hitter who consistently shows the ability to produce run scoring hits/rbi’s in tight situations late in the game. The type of player who you say… I can’t wait until “so and so” gets to the plate in the 9th.

  57. The pitcher is batting 5th for the Cards, always fun to guess whether it’s a double switch or not with them.

  58. I wish Cox didn’t feel the need to impress LaRussa by going through the entire bullpen in 3 innings in the first game of the series.

  59. Disappointing. Another great outing by JJ. A little more timely hitting (or hitting at all in the first five innings, I suppose), and it coulda gone the other way.

  60. I’ve been saying it time and time again on here and even steve phillips said the same thing. This braves team needs to make a trade for a bat. Trade some prospects to get an allstar hr type hitter. It’s the price you have to pay for success, without a bonafide bat in this lineup everyone on this blog will continue to feel the same frustration as this team fails in tight situations

  61. mraver…

    im making a point. Steve phillips is more qualified and knowledgeable than you are so I think I’d take his advice over whatever tidbits of uselessness you have to offer

  62. Crap! Season is still very young but Cards look like they have the pieces for now. Good pitching, great defense and some good hitting.

    Ok. I’m a Braves fan and I’m pulling like crazy for Jeff Francouer but what is it about all the networks? You would think that at one point in time he was like actually good. Its not just ESPN tonight but Fox Sports Ohio’s guys too. Constantly yapping about the new approach, the new patience (3 walks this season), more controlled swing ad nauseaum. Tonight Steve Phillips (ok is Steve Phillips) used the word ‘resurgent’ for a corner of with a .778 OPS. I dunno. Just wanted to let y’all know its not just the AJC and the Braves announcers that are making Frenchy more than what he is.

    Tough loss tonight. I can’t complain though the Braves played way better than the win I got to see against the Reds last Friday.

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