264 thoughts on “Absolutely vital series game thread”

  1. Stones video won’t play!

    Also, has anyone mentioned that the Marlins have a song recorded by Scott Stapp that might make you proud we got “throw me a fastball; smoke from the mound!”

  2. 3,
    I’m partial to the hippity hoppity version of “The Braves Play Here” they occasionally play on Peach Pit TV, usually late in the game.

  3. You know, I think DOB does really good work; he crunches some numbers, looks for trends and stuff. And that’s on top of the beat-writer stuff, game write-ups, getting good quotes.. And I don’t read any other team’s beat-writers, but I think he busts his ass. Beat’s Bowman hand’s down, for me.

    But he is TOUCHY on his blog. MEEEE-YOW!

    If he was a ball-player, he’d be one you’d see on Sportscenter giving a heckler the finger.

  4. “Cincinnati Reds pitcher Edinson Volquez has been suspended 50 games for using a banned substance, but in what might possibly be the most misguided application of MLB’s substance abuse policy, it won’t make one bit of difference in when he returns to the mound.

    Volquez is already on the Reds’ 60-day disabled list after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his elbow. He isn’t even expected to be healthy enough to pitch until after the All-Star break.”


  5. Man, I assumed it would be tacked on at the end, when he’s healthy. That is weird — and awesome, since I own him in a fantasy league.

  6. Saw Minor pitch for the M-Braves last night. Looked pretty good and had some zip to his fastball. Kept it about 92 for the first few innings and then it seemed to sit about 88-89 in the last two he pitched. Did a good job of keeping the ball down low in the strike zone and nothing was really driven off of him. Might have gotten a little help with some of the lower pitches being called strikes but looked pretty good all in all.

  7. I guess we now know that “semi-big” means “one time all-star not in a major market.”

    It’s a fair definition. If I had to choose among “big,” “not big,” and “semi-big” for Volquez, I’d choose semi-big.

  8. @10 – it’s about costing him pay, rather PT, imho. That they are in a position to do one without the expense of the other is fine by the other owners.

    @7 – yeah, he gets into it with posters who call him out all the time. Which is cool, in the sense that he’s obviously monitoring the site, but engaging the nutjobs that post there is pretty pointless, even though I’ve done it a time or two as well.

  9. Okay, I’ll take the bait. This series well could dictate the way the rest of the season goes. I’ll take the winner of this series as the pennant winner, and the loser as the WC.

  10. Whether he’s abusing passive sentence construction or simply extending already-labyrinthine thoughts to lengths that would confuse and exhaust John Kerry, Mark Bowman provides ample indication with his writing that he is often inclined toward the utterly unreadable.

    “It’s like he’s on a one-man mission to massacre the English language,” said the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Dave O’Brien, who is widely acknowledged to be far better at his job than Bowman, although they are known to have similar goals and responsibilities in keeping Braves fans up to date on team happenings on a regular basis.

    “Also, he’s morbidly obese,” added O’Brien.

  11. @13-

    It just strikes me as unprofessional. It’s a little like the manager arguing with a customer at Burger King. Give them a new whopper, and get on with it.

    DOB twice says that Heyward has 3 HR and 15 RBI… Once he mis-types and says he has 15 HR. The following ensues:


    He’s got 15 RBI, not 15 HRs….

    David O’Brien:

    OptimisticInTexas: Just caught that typo you were referring to. What I find humorous is that you would write it like I made some factual error rather than a simple typo in a hurry (if you look, I wrote two or three different times before that typo that he had three homers and 15 RBI).

    Now, myself, just because I enjoy provoking, was tempted to say, “DOB, I think you mean to say ‘The typo TO WHICH YOU WERE REFERRING.’ But I thought Dave’s head might explode.

  12. @15 – oh I agree.

    Now this is an awesome put-down by a poster:

    Tennessee Paul: After tremendous hype and expectations which possibly could never be met, the kid has played 12 games and hit .441/.441/.971/1.412 with 5 HR and 12 RBI…. so it isn’t really hype if it’s true, right? Oh, we aren’t talking about Francoeur’s first twelve games. We were talking about Heyward’s…. this time the production in the first 12 games certainly foreshadows greatness.

    Obviously it ignores a number of mitigating circumstances, but the guy’s got a good point.

  13. The funniest part is that even then he couldn’t get his OBP past his BA.

  14. DOB just can’t stand criticism, however justified, that’s all. Why would he even bother to reply instead of just correcting the typo?

  15. He could say “oops. thanks. hurrying, as usual.”

    I actually kind of thought it was like one of the Commandments Of Blogging, that when thou dost typo, thou shalt stike-through error, leaving the correction for all to see.

  16. #7
    It’s my policy (as a rational human being) to avoid any and all forum entries on any AJC blog. To me, it’s like watching “Jersey Shore”: Every minute you spend doing it, you may lose an IQ point.

    However, in response to #7, I did a quick trip through today’s DOB forum and, I gotta say, “Give ’em hell, DOB.”

    I have a somewhat similar job and I agree that it’s best to avoid too much engagement with the crazy or petty people, but when you see another writer do it, it gets a small Jersey Shore fist-pump from me.

    And, of course, now I feel a whole lot dumber.

  17. Maybe it just irritates me because I only read the comments scanning for updates by DOB. And all his comments are catty responses to the numbskulls..

    And also, by taking the bait, it just makes them feel important, and just makes it worse..

  18. Big soaking shower going on down here by the stadium. Should be gone by gametime though.

  19. DOB says Adenolith is not true –

    “So get this: Adenolith isn’t his middle name. His middle name is Alias, pronounced Uh-li-as, like the Elias Sports Bureau.

    I asked Jason about 15 minutes ago, wanted to get the originn of Adenolith. He doesn’t know where that started (his middle name isn’t provided in the media guide, just Jason A. Heyward). He wasn’t upset at all, but just said that wasn’t his middle name, and gave me what his actual middle name.

    I asked what Alias met, and he said was from the Bible and that it stood for “strength, courage, perseverance.”

    And no, it’s not a family name, he said. “It’s just my name.” I said something like, they probably should put your full name in the media guide, in order to avoid confusion, and he said something like, why? I don’t go by that.

    So anyway, there you have it. Real middle name Alias. Pronounced Uh-li-as.”

    I am CRUSHED. So long, Death Lion.

  20. Jay at #8,

    Morgan Ensberg’s blog is really awesome. In fact, I have never read anything even remotely as good as his stuff from any public figure. His Bagwell leadership story is pure gold. But my favourite part is his take on the slow pace of games:

    A Letter To the Fans

    Dear Fans,

    Baseball is about making money. There, I said it. Players play the game because we can make a fortune while we are young and healthy. Owners own teams so they can make money. But I think you understand that. That’s just capitalism at work. I think that when push comes to shove, you would play this game also for exorbitant sums of money.

    Now, we don’t want you to think we hate playing. Not by a long shot. We love the game and we can’t believe that we make this much money playing something we love.

    Fans, you understand that baseball is unique in the world of sports because there is no set clock. You also understand that it is expensive to go to a baseball game. But you don’t understand why we are lying to you. I am here to tell you.

    We get paid from commercials, television rights, MLB trademarks, tickets, concessions, and a bunch of other sources that I am too dumb to think of right now. One aspect that you are going to have to live with is that TV commercials pay the largest portion of the bills and if they say 2 minutes and 5 seconds, then 2 minutes and 5 seconds it is.

    You see, I don’t think fans are completely stupid. The guy at Wrigley who spit on me was stupid, but the rest of you aren’t so dumb. Would you riot in the streets if I told you the truth? I don’t think you would. I think you would just say, “Oh, ok. I don’t like that I have to wait longer, but I understand why they wait 2 minutes and 5 seconds in-between innings. I would do the same thing. Well, I am going to get another hot dog then.”

    Bud, just tell the fans that the pace is slow because of money. People won’t think you are a jerk. They won’t think you are some money hungry Commissioner who is trying to squeeze out every last cent possible. They will finally hear something honest and when you are straight with people they can place themselves in your shoes.

    Fans, we play for money.

    Morgan Ensberg

    Thanks for the link.

  21. Chip sucks a lot more than Phil Collins. Chip never did anything approaching In the Air Tonight or Easy Lover, maybe he’s as good as Ssudio though.

  22. good lineup:
    1. Diaz LF, 2. Prado 2B, 3. Jones 3B, 4. McCann C, 5. Glaus 1B, 6. Heyward LF, 7. Escobar SS, 8. McLouth CF, 9. Hanson P

    heyward climbing! too bad he’s behind glaus whom never gets on base. his rbis will surely go down.

  23. I think Death Lion is still in play. Observe:

    Alias was a TV show starring Jennifer Garner, who is married to Ben Affleck. The object of Ben Affleck’s enduring bromance is Matt Damon, who once starred in The Legend of Bagger Vance, directed by Robert Redford. Robert Redford just so happened to direct Lions for Lambs. Now, Matt Damon also featured in The Departed, which is another way of saying the dead. Dead Lions. Death Lion.

    There we go, Alias = Death Lion.

  24. @33 – The funniest porno film name ever was The Legend Of Teabagger Vance.

    /pre-political usage.

  25. At any event, the name “Alias” does not appear in the Bible. “Aliah”, which would turn into “Alias” in Greek, does appear, once, in the King James Version only; it’s a mispring for “Alvah”, a ruler of Edom. “Elias”, with an E, is the Hellenized version of “Elijah”.

  26. With lefties hitting over .500 on the year against Kendrick, batting Diaz first and McLouth eighth is – let’s say – suboptimal.

  27. Hanson has been walking more guys early this season… and he’s throwing a lot of pitches.

  28. @45 And how many lefties has he faced, maybe 10? That doesn’t strike me as an actionable stat.

  29. He walked David Eckstein two too many times, but I don’t mind him walking Ibanez in front of a backup shortstop.

  30. Werth’s may have been the bull-crappiest double I’ve ever seen. Bad swing at a good pitch.

  31. Prado got away with a bit of an ole’ there – that ball was skidding hard off the grass, and dang near got through.

  32. @45 And how many lefties has he faced, maybe 10? That doesn’t strike me as an actionable stat.

    Ok, can I interest you in a .331/.397/.541 career line against lefties?

    I would have liked to see Hinske tonight as well.

  33. So long as he gives Hanson strike calls in the opposite batter’s box, I’m all for it.

  34. So when we make Kyle Kendrick look like Sandy Koufax, who’s left for us to mold Halladay in to?

    Mac, three real world inches… It was not touching the blurry gray border they put around the strike zone.

  35. Are you kidding me? Not only does he strike out looking without being called, but he gets that to roll for a double?

  36. Surely they’re not going to actually score that a hit are they? Any normal first baseman makes that play, but not Glaus.

  37. You know, I have to tip my hat to the the phils. They do an incredible job of battling up there. They just don’t strike out.

    Edit: they don’t strike out easily, melky or glaus style.

  38. Hanson has too good of stuff to have to throw 90 pitches through 4IP, thats ridiculous no matter what offense he’s facing. He’s got to become more efficient

  39. Hanson at 88 pitches through 4. Looks like we’ll have to rely on the ‘pen after the 5th tonight.

  40. This game is pretty embarrassing so far.

    So…went for a run this afternoon at the nature sanctuary by my place and stepped on/got bit by a copperhead. Right on the calf. It happened pretty quickly, but there was definitely that slow-mo “oh shit” moment. Outside of having a balloon below my right knee, I’m fine now, but I definitely do not recommend the experience.

    Anyway, the great thing about this is that my girlfriend is TERRIFIED of snakes (she thinks it was a near death experience) and I’ve been getting some serious TLC. She cooked me dinner and is now cleaning up my place/doing my laundry while I watch baseball. The swelling should be down in a few days, so I have milk this for all it’s worth. I just wish the Bravos would cooperate a bit more

    Sorry, but I feel like you guys should know these things.

  41. “Hanson has too good of stuff to have to throw 90 pitches through 4IP, thats ridiculous no matter what offense he’s facing. He’s got to become more efficient”

    What he said. And in other news, Kyle Kendrick has thrown 33 pitches through three innings. How is that even possible? How is any of this happening?

  42. Being shut out by Kyle Kendrick would be far more embarrassing than being no-hit by Ubaldo Jimenez. Arguably, being shut out for three innings by Kendrick is.

  43. Well, this looks promising.

    BTW, why do I keep getting this “posting comments too quickly” message?

  44. i’d rather have eric hinske up in this situation. does anyone have any real faith in troy glaus at the moment? i know i dont. please, prove me wrong, troy.

  45. How bad is it when the analyst says “After McCann you’ve got a double play candidate on deck?”

  46. Drew, Cox will figure out the depths of Glaus’ ineptitude. We’ll piss a lot of games away first, but it will happen.

    Heyward will lead the team in walks, I think. If he bats ahead of Glaus, the rookie record for walks (Ted Williams’ 107 in 1939) is a goner, and it might be anyway.

    Edit: Dear God, Glaus is awful.

  47. Glaus hitting behind McCann kind of reminds me of that Mets-Cards game Saturday where LaRussa put the pitcher’s spot behind Pujols for 9 innings.

    @87 I’ve had trouble with it as well.

  48. Alright, I tried exercising patience, but I’m already sick of Glaus, too. He’s been a little unlucky, but between the defensive gaffes and the not coming through with guys on base, he’s starting to really piss me off.

  49. I’m usually patient about these things, but I’m jumping on the “it’s time to do something about Glaus” bandwagon. I’m not giving up that he might start hitting again, but we need someone better after McCann. Either get over having two lefties back to back and move Heyward to the 5 hole, or swap Yunel and Glaus.

  50. Troy Glaus = Rico Brogna (the braves version)

    Troy Glaus < Scott Thorman

    Troy Glaus < Ken Camanitti

    This HP Umpire < Deusche Bag

  51. Hard to teach Tommy to stop trying to blow it by guys and let us catch it, when the first baseman kicks the ball in to right field and the left fielder stops for lunch in Marietta on his way to field a single.

  52. Mac, your software’s starting to editorialize. Apparently, any post from me ever is “too often”. :-)

  53. texas has 7 stolen bases through 4 innings off of wakefield tonight including 3 from elvis andrus.

  54. Let’s see if this works…my 4th attempt at a post.

    What I said earlier:

    fu–ing Glaus.

    I also said:

    The lineup in its current configuration is simply unsustainable to compete. Even if we move Glaus out or down, this lineup has too many holes.

    Honestly, unless we add a bat, I don’t know if we’re going to have offense night to night to compete.

  55. Why do I hate it when baseball is out of season? My life is so much better without the compulsion to listen to these games.

    Of course, the rest of the year I’m suffering over soccer or college basketball. Sport is so scarily like a drug.

  56. “The lineup in its current configuration is simply unsustainable to compete. Even if we move Glaus out or down, this lineup has too many holes.”

    alex, this is a complete overreaction.

    texas update: they now have 8 stolen bases: 3 by andrus, 3 by cruz, and 2 by vlad.

  57. Jeez, that wasn;t predictable or anything. Swing through a 92 mph fastball on 2-0 and then hit the next pitch in the dirt for a double play. Stay with him though Bobby, Hinske couldn’t possibly be better….

  58. Might be in the minority, but I love Smoltz’s corny jokes. Can’t wait to get EJ back in the booth with them – they make a good team.

  59. BTW, using Moylan here is probably the right move. There’s a good chance that if you don’t, the game will get out of line, and you certainly don’t want him facing Utley and Howard.

  60. TP isn’t the problem, too many washed up, poor fundamentals by the players are the problem.

    I know TP or any hitting coach would teach some of the things these guys are doing up there.

    Players got to execute, some can, some can’t.

  61. @133,

    It took him a few months to realize he couldn’t see, so I’m not optimistic.

  62. Outside the box thought.

    True or False: this lineup and defense would be better with McCann at 1st and Ross the everyday catcher.

    EDIT: great throw by BMac, but it’s his fault he had to make it

  63. That last sequence sums up exactly what Atlanta does wrong and what the Phils do right.

    I’m sorry that ball has to be caught. That is a play that has to be mad. You don’t see the Phillies doing things like that. Balls don’t trickle off of their gloves, etc.

    The Glaus play at first has to be made. You have to score with the bases loaded w/less than two out.

    Championship teams make those plays and they cash in opportunities.

    Mac made up for it with that throw. I will give credit.

  64. Championship teams make those plays and they cash in opportunities.

    That’s what we call a tautology.

  65. Mets fans booing Wright for hitting into a DP. Btw, they’re up 2-0. Stay classy, NYC.

  66. As I have said repeatedly, until the Braves offense is upgraded their pitching will only allow them to be a .500 team. Yes Heyward is an upgrade, but the other OF are AAAA players, Glaus is an independent leaguer at this point and Chipper’s vagina hurts.

  67. Starting to hit some ropes against Kendrick, but Victorino is doing his Garry Maddox impression out there. I never liked Maddox and like Victorino less.

  68. How much more of this Glaus bullshit do we have to endure? Can we at least bat him 8th?

  69. I was a big Lost fan but fell off the wagon hard. I stopped feeling like I was in good hands writing-wise.

  70. Earlier, the organ player played Take Five by Dave Brubeck when McCann went out to talk to Hanson. I liked that.

    And Medlen is eating some innings here, despite giving up that insurance run. I mostly like that.

    I’m about out of positives, though.

  71. Bastardo would be a terrible name to have.

    That ball was fair.

    I’ve stopped getting the denial messages, Mac.

  72. Stuff like this happens when there are sure outs in the 1, 5, 7, and 8 spots in the lineup tonight.

  73. Jon K,

    If you can’t be funny about it, you have to be original about it, or it’s just annoying, and you’re not invited to this pity party.

  74. We laugh about the ‘Acosta’ role in the bullpen, but it is a big help to have a guy take control of that role. Helps with the stress on the pen.

  75. Well, the bullpen has continued to do a good job. But this business of scoring runs in only 50% of our games has got to stop.

  76. And there’s going to be a time when Chavez has to move in to a high leverage role. A huge upgrade.

  77. I actually watched Kendrick get pounded by our triple-A team last year. He was with the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs and the Phillies fans in attendance eviscerated him as he walked off the field at the end of each half inning. I actually felt bad for him.

  78. And now if McCann gets on… Glaus will be there to lay waste to our hopes and dreams once more.

  79. hahahaha wow

    i love ryan madson

    i also love the deadness in the philly announcer’s voice

  80. I’m fine with Wagner, Saito, and Venters. Two great short relievers, and if the game still isn’t over after them, we have a AAA starter who can go seven innings.

  81. “Home runs, triples, singles… Anything he wants to hit, he hits. I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s incredible! Anything he wants to do, he does! I mean, how can somebody play that well that came from nowhere?”

  82. Just saw the Death Lion hr on mlb.tv look in. That young Jayson Heyward is doing pretty good.

  83. The real trouble now is that we’ll have to wait for the 12th for Heyward to come up again.

  84. Have you ever been to a Phillies home game? The scariest Phillie is, by far, the Phanatic. It’s vomit green and has a giant tube for sucking your face off.

    Utley’s a close second, though. I still haven’t gotten used to thinking of Halladay as a Phil.

  85. So, just out of curiosity, is that one of those things championship teams do?

  86. Fantastic. I thought this was over, then two guys break out of their slumps on either side of The Legend. Amazing game.

  87. No kidding, csg–mine switched to the Thunder/Lakers pregame at 9:00. Thanks.

  88. Saved by the pincers of hell! Saved by the pincers of hell! I will never doubt Jason “Big Pun” Heyward again. He’s not a playa, he just crushes A LOT.

  89. so will Bobby give Nate the chance to break out of this slump or does he sit him tomorrow?

  90. I was watching the game with my grandfather and he says, mclouth is gonna hit a homer. Perhaps he is a prophet, needless to say, I’m gonna watch a lot of games with him from now on!

  91. What I love about the Baseball Jesus in pressure situations is that he does exactly what the team needs. On Sunday, he rips the single to win the game. Today it’s the HR to tie it. Just a really impressive kid– such a high baseball IQ.

  92. With the Marlins losing, the Braves will be listed first in the standings tomorrow.

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