Braves 11, Brewers 6

Milwaukee Brewers vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – July 18, 2010 – ESPN.

Ugly game, pretty result. The Braves took control in the second and third innings and didn’t look back — much.

The Brewers took the lead on a homer to start the game by Rickie Weeks, but in the second inning Matt Diaz countered with a double to score Glaus, and after McCann was thrown out trying to score on a groundout, Diaz came home on a dribber from Melky to take the lead.

In the third, McCann was the hero. Omar Infante, All-Star, singled in Prado to make it 3-1, then Glaus walked to load the bases. Manny Parra got ahead of McCann, 0-2, then tried to come inside. That was a mistake, as McCann hit a towering fly ball that just cleared the fence for a grand slam, making it 7-1. Diaz’s homer in the fifth made it 8-1.

Derek Lowe just knows how to win, but isn’t showing much evidence of knowing how to pitch more than about five innings. He was pretty dominant after the leadoff homer, allowing just two other baserunners from the first to the fifth. Weeks, however, led off the sixth with another homer, and after getting Corey Hart, Lowe allowed a single to Ryan Braun, who went to second on an Infante error. Prince Fielder, rotund crybaby, singled in Braun, and a Casey McGehee single chased Lowe. After allowing another single, Mike Dunn got a double play to end the inning.

The Braves got the runs back in the bottom of the inning. Prado reached on an infield single, then Heyward was hit by a pitch, but the Brewers are allowed to throw at the Braves, apparently. Infante singled in Prado, Glaus was hit by a pitch (no ejection) and the Brewers wisely walked McCann with the bases loaded to make it 10-3. Diaz singled in Infante to make it 11-3.

Of course, that’s too comfortable, so in the eighth inning Bobby brought in Jesse Chavez, who proved today that he can’t even function in mopup roles and is only of utility when you are getting blown out and it doesn’t matter how many runs the other team scores. He allowed a homer to the fat crybaby in the eighth, then a double, a single, and another double in the ninth, forcing Bobby to bring in Billy Wagner to finish the game. After a fat crybaby strikeout and a groundout by McGehee, it was finally over.

117 thoughts on “Braves 11, Brewers 6”

  1. Ok, I’ll say it: I kinda like Prince Fielder. Yesterday did not change my opinion about him at all.

  2. This series made me hate the Boo Hoo Crew. I’ve never felt strongly about them; (though I do love Bob Uecker), now, they can bite the kielbasa(or the sausage of their choice).

  3. What a frustrating, frustrating weekend. I went into this series & saw 4 at home with Milwaukee and thought a real chance for momentum.

    First, there’s TOO much inconsistency in the offense, then too much inconsistency from Hanson and Lowe. Those areas may hopefully stabilize but where the Braves can finally fix things is to dump the dead weight in the bullpen finally, such as Jesse Chavez and Kawakami. They do not belong in the pen on a contending team. Enough already.

  4. Fat crybaby that is a little harsh Mac. I think he is one tough SOB who I wish was on the Braves.

  5. I have no problem with Fielder. I’d be pissed if I were him too. Though I would have liked an ejection after the Glaus plunking…

  6. Alex R, I think the inconsistency with Hanson can be fixed with experience, but Lowe is Lowe. I don’t think we will see a better version of Lowe unfortunately.

    Dumping Chavez to Gwinnett is easy, I don’t understand why the Braves haven’t done that. This will leave KK as the long reliever, which I think is ok.

    Today’s win is very important.

    Lowe is a winner. A WINNER!!!

  7. Weren’t the Brewers warned after Heyward got hit? How come no one was ejected when Glaus was hit right after?

  8. Interesting. I thought once you’ve been warned there was no choice in the matter. Otherwise, what’s the point?

  9. Good lord, why does DOB even watch the games? He already knows what he is going to write.

  10. Giants tied it up 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth with two runs off of K-Rod, still batting.

    Runners on second and third, one out.

  11. Runners on 2nd + 3rd, one out, bottom ninth, game tied 3-3. Dribbler to 3rd, runner coming home, throw from Wright was way high, runner OBVIOUSLY slid under the catcher’s tag, but was called out nevertheless.

    Game goes to extras now.

  12. runner on 3rd, 1 out … groundball to Wright, runner heads home. The throw is high, the runner slid under the leaping catcher but the umpire call him out on the tag. Replay shows the runner got his leg in there and the tag was up on his chest. Not even close.

  13. How someone can have so much vitriol toward a guy they don’t even know is beyond me.

    You’d think Escobar was out there stepping on kittens or something the way some people go on about him.

  14. #31, was there any pressure here? Your 2007-9 Braves veered between barely fringe contenders and disasters.

  15. #39 Hanson and Jurrjens too. Let’s move them next for RA Dickey and Bronson Arroyo!

  16. Some observations from Turner Field today.
    A lot less people but still a good ratio of hot girls! I like Atlanta.
    Diaz is a beast. Another great game by him. Even though some of you seem to like Fielder, he is a fat cry baby! After he got plunked yesterday and then erased after the double play, he stayed down and walked off the field as slowly as a snail. I booed him today. Every time.
    Lowe sucked after the fifth but this time Cox reacted quickly enough.
    Corey Hart is one ugly mother. Leaving Atlanta now. This was fun!

  17. Everyone knows Yunel will do well in Toronto when there is no pressure.

    We know he’ll do well there because he’s a much better player than the guy we have.

  18. Yunel… Nah, good luck to him. As Ted would say: Can’t cry over spilled milk. Let’s move on.

  19. @40 You must be much less pleased with their performance this year than I am if you are comparing them to 2010 Yunel.

  20. I’m glad the Cubs decided to not suck for the series against the Phils. Except for the game they blew.

  21. Cubs might need another couple of runs to make it hold up.

    Edit: Yeah, that will work.

  22. Cubs have broken it open.

    On Tuesday, the Braves face Wade LeBlanc…yet another LHP. That’s 4 in a row. Good thing Diaz is back to normal.

  23. Seriously, why is Jesse Chavez drawing a major league paycheck at this point?

    I don’t remember much of A-Gon from his NL days, but I will say this after watching him for a few games: he goes up there swinging. It would be nice if he was a little more selective but that hasn’t been his MO and he’s not likely to change, although the Braves may rub off on him some. I mainly want my SS to field the ball, and hitting is a bonus. So far he looks pretty competent out there.

  24. @51 – He sure did a good job today. I don’t think Yunel would have turned that double-play with the bases loaded.

  25. I could get hitters out more successfully than Jesse Chavez, and I walked 12 guys in Little League once.

  26. Yoko hit a salami today for his first homer of the season. Just what exactly is in the water in Toronto?

  27. Jesse Chavez is apparently and inexplicably going to stay on the team all year. I guess the Braves want to show that they got something for Rafael Soriano.

  28. Phillies lost and everything returns to Pre-All Star break status with four games off the schedule. Gotta like that.

  29. Phillies lost and everything returns to Pre-All Star break status with four games off the schedule. Gotta like that.

    Except the Mets are back five now instead of four.

  30. @40 What are you talking about? JJ was hurt and this is only Hanson’s first full season.

    Honestly, you can almost see Yunel will be the first one who will make stupid mistake in a playoff game if we indeed get there.

  31. @56 Were they only four back? I honestly don’t think the Mets are legit. I am more concerned with the Phillies. That’s just my personal opinion though!

  32. The Mets are the Mets. Enough said.

    I’m more concerned with the Phillies getting their mojo back, but it’s getting late in the game and a five game cushion is pretty nice. It’s the Braves’ division to lose.

  33. Just being in first place…my friends…I was just thinking the other day…so much more fun looking down to who are chasing you instead of looking up to who you are chasing…it’s great.

  34. We expect so much from McCann, but I just realized that he is already performing at about his career average level. I guess it’s another example of “Why is he not hitting like Piazza?”

  35. chipper’s behind hinske, conrad, prado, mccann, heyward, glaus, diaz, and infante in slugging. OUCH! i seriously dont think chipper plays next year.

    if that occurs, the braves will have the most payroll flexibility they’ve had in years with only 49 mil committed (and it would be 42 mil if they could find a taker for kawakami). as it stands right now, the braves have 62 million committed to 7 players (mccann, chipper, lowe, hudson, mclouth, infante, and kawakami).

    however, looking at the list of free agents, the upcoming year doesnt seem to be the best year to have payroll flexibility. the only outfield difference makers on the market are crawford, hawpe, and werth.

    i hate off days.

  36. Not sure if anyone has posted this yet. It’s round two of saber philly fan versus non-saber philly fan.

  37. I just want a capable CF’r. Or at least one who is good on either offense or defense. Our guys right now are all replacement level on each side

  38. remember when a few here thought David DeJesus would be a nice upgrade. He’s crashing back down in a hurry

    July .233/.313/.256/.568 OPS+59

    some thought his June line of .410/.450/.530/.980 was going to last

  39. I just knew this game was going to be like this, even though Chip said that the Braves had a “gigantic” lead when it was 8-1. I knew Lowe was going to struggle to get through and that the back end of the bullpen would make it too close for comfort. It would have needed to be 15-3 for Chavez to maybe get through it.

    The split doesn’t really bother me; it happens even against bad teams. You simply aren’t going to win every series. I think Philly fans are probably much more frustrated at losing 3 of 4 against the Cubs. But I honestly don’t know what to make of the Braves. Are they really good or are they doing it with mirrors? My evaluation of the team is: rotation good but not great, with a lot of depth but no real dominator; bullpen solid to excellent in most cases; defense so-so, offense inconsistent and lacking power, but patient and able to work pitchers. Is this really a 95 win team? Can we expect J-Hey to start driving the ball again? Can Hanson develop some consistency? What will Chipper contribute and can he even stay on the field?

    The good thing is that all the NL teams have similar question marks.

  40. #69 – I agree this team is perplexing, but we are good at the things you want to be good at. Especially pitching. Being able to throw 5 guys out there that have a good chance of giving you a quality start and our best bullpen since 2002 is huge.

    Offensively we get on base and work pitchers.

    To me this is a winning formula as long as we don’t experience one of the mass team slumps we did at the beginning of the season.

  41. this team does two things really well that helps them win games…pitching and getting on base

  42. @69 and 71,

    One huge thing that’s different than the last few years is the team’s ability to score late runs. Especially when they are down. That comes from the plate discipline they’ve had all year, at least in my observation. Oh and not having frenchy. That helps too.

  43. So I voted the Phils, and then I looked at the schedule. How quirky: We have 10 more games (7 at home) against the Mets and only 3 more games (on the road) against the Phils.

  44. If you add up the contribution of the players listed as bench players in BBRef, and extrapolate to a full season, you end up with 1396 plate appearances, or just about exactly two full-time players. Each player would put up the following stats:

    92 R
    43 2B
    3 3B
    13 HR
    93 RBI

    So, imagine instead of eight starting position players, each team has ten. Our ninth and tenth guys look like that. The Mets and Phillies don’t even come close.

  45. @73,

    Totally agree. That has been a big thing. In the past, the Braves did nothing late. I think it is very important to be able to score late, either to come back or to put games away.

    I voted for the Phillies–playing poorly for two months but still only 5.5 back–but I wouldn’t underestimate the Mets. It’s not that bad a lineup with Beltran back, especially with Frenchy on the bench most of the time and, while we may not know what to expect with the pitching after Santana, they have been very good so far.

  46. @75,
    I wonder what type of production that Nate can make in two weeks that would convince Wren to not look for someone else- Two weeks is not a large sample size.

  47. Interesting to compare to the starting position players projections. Prado’s projections outpace the imaginary bench players in all those categories except RBI. McCann in HR and the slash stats; and Glaus in HR, RBI, OBP/SLG. Heyward in 3B and OBP/SLG (counting stats hurt by the DL time). Hinske OBP (by only .003) and SLG. Jones HR (only by 1). Melky is below the line in all categories.

    p.s. – Yoko was also below the line in all categories.

  48. frank wren has been, thus far, a gutsy gm. his decisions have looked pretty good, but if melky cabrera ends the year on this team, i’m going to puke. why is this guy getting a free pass to suck? i sure do hope mclouth comes up hot so we can finally do the right thing and get rid of melkshake. seriously, can anyone give me a reason why he’s on this team? as of right now, according to fangraphs, melky should pay the braves 1.5 million for allowing him to put on their uniform.

  49. “My melkshake brings the fans to the yard. I could catch that, but I’d have to charge.”

  50. @79 – I’d guess that they’re looking for him to keep building on what he was doing during the rehab assignment. I’d also guess that Wren has 90% made the decision on whether to try to trade for a CF. If he’s leaning toward a trade, the call-up would just hope to add to the trade value.

  51. Right now, the Pimpbot leads MLB catchers in both OPS and OBP. He’s second in Avg to Mauer and SLG to Napoli. I don’t know what else he could do short of being one of the Flying Molina Brothers. Maybe he could win the ASG MVP or something…

  52. Well, Mauer (and earlier Piazza) set the bar so high for catchers that almost no one can meet it. That’s why someone like Molina gets more props because he is considered a great defensive catcher; I think McCann is considered a good (but not great) hitter who is lousy defensively. I’m not saying this is correct by any means, but I that’s the perception. It’s like using Mays, Mantle, and DiMaggio as the standard for centerfielders–almost no one will measure up. If the Braves make the playoffs and McCann does well, that will change his national image.

  53. clarke @79,

    If McLouth is passable defensively and 800 to 850 ops (maybe by Melky playing against lefties and maybe bringing a 700), then it is not urgent to find a centerfielder. Schaffer is still performing poorly at Gwinnett, so it is “noodle arm, no power” Blanco or trade at this point.

    And, we probably only have 1 significant trade in us. That is, if we play a major chip, that will probably be the only one the FO will play.

    Next question, who do you waive after August 1? My thoughts, Kawakami, Lowe, and McLouth (if he doesn’t rebound or get traded). If anybody really wants those salaries, then let them have them. Then, if a contender has a pitcher go down in August, they would probably take on Lowe or Kawakami to stay in the hunt and we will be clear to trade them.

    At Melky’s salary, I would keep him until the end of the year and then non tender him if we don’t see more than this.

  54. I must have stumbled into the wrong bar. There’s Claudell, er, Yunel lovers and people who don’t think Prince Fielder is a fat crybaby in here.

    Prince Fielder is such a complete fat crybaby that his stat line should read:

    Fielder, Prince, FC

    Life ain’t fair. Gregor Blanco has performed admirably (at times brilliantly) and Nate McLouth has been miserable. Yet we’re trading one for the other. Wren must be trying to justify his trade – nothing else makes sense.

  55. Watching Oostie hugging his baby, his wife and the Open Trophy forced this thought:

    “Tiger – this is what you gave up. I hope it was worth it.”

  56. What are the odds Tiger gets his golf game together? Of course his family life is hosed. 750 extra large! Man that had better been some outstanding strange.

  57. My take on Yunel: I like the guy, but I’m glad he’s gone. Honestly, I think he is, too. I like rooting for individual players, but obviously I’m a Braves guy first.

    Prince Fielder should be the poster boy for vegetarianism as a non-healthy diet.

  58. justhank,

    Gregor Blanco has no trade value. He doesn’t cost much (400 prorated ML and 150 prorated Minor L). He wasn’t traded, he was sent down.

    McLouth, at the level he had in Pittsburgh, is a valuable player with less salary coming than what he is worth. McLouth may never reach that level. If he does, then he is vastly better than Blanco. Also, if McLouth reaches that level, then he is somebody a contender might trade for. If McLouth stays in Gwinnett, then we are still paying him over 6 million a year for essentially nothing (protection from negative WAR? We are getting some of that from the Melkman already).

    Rehabilitating McLouth is a vastly important thing for this organization.

    Blanco’s recent stint is absolutely the best he can ever achieve (and probably better than he is over the long haul). He is a valiant warrior and puts his all into what he does, but that doesn’t justify not trying to get McLouth going.

    It is unlikely that a continuingly “failed” McLouth will produce less than Blanco, anyway. If McLouth doesn’t get any better by the end of the month, then the team will try to make a move (although I am having toruble coming up with likely center field targets).

  59. Also, Mauer was a no power guy until last year, right? Well, he certainly isn’t showing the power he had last year. Give me the Pimpbot.

  60. Melky is fine 4th OF’r to have on the team. He can play all three positions and somehow his UZR’s are far better than Id have ever guessed. I dont mind having him, but not for $3mil, and I hate the fact that we’ve had to start him. Im also just about ready to start Infante in CF. Thats a big risk, but he can hit. Id much rather see Infante batting second and dropping Heyward back down to 6th or 7th. Its not happening though

  61. 800 to 850 ops

    Given Turner field, that translates into an OPS+ of around 113 – 126. I’d be happy with anything over 105 (roughly 750 or so).

  62. Nate posted a .723OPS after the break last year and a .577OPS before the break this year…..Id be thrilled with 750 from him going forward

  63. Braves better be watching Med’s IP this year. Look at what happened to Liriano and Hamels after their great year but huge spike’s in IP. Edison Volquez had the same thing happen to him. Problem is we really need Medlen in the rotation heading forward.

  64. Possible debate question for this off-day:

    Is it indeed better to burn out than it is to rust?

  65. Joe Mauer makes eleventy billion dollars. Heap isn’t much worse of a hitter, but his contract is absurdly team-friendly. He’s one of the most valuable players in all of baseball, behind Longoria, for that reason alone.

  66. funny…Boras compares him to Tex and wants the same deal for him. I dont see why any club would pay that kind of $$ to someone in that kind of shape with his attitude

  67. kind of bad timing to call Nate up….we got two lefties the next 3 games. Is Bobby going to let him face them, if not, they shouldve let him get some more reps in at Gwinnet.

    esp with them playing tonight

  68. I’m pissed about the McClouth/Blanco switch out. yes, I do think Wren is justifying his deal with the Pirates. the only good news is we really didn’t give up anything since Charlie Morton stinks.

    And while Blanco is more ideal as a 4th outfielder, he hasn’t hurt the Braves when he plays the way McClouth has. I’m so not happy that Nate is back. Again, I’d really give anything for Nate and Melky to run into one another putting both on the shelf.

    Did anyone see the quotes from Ken Macha that DOB posted? Good lord what is wrong with him.

    KEN MACHA, Brewers manager

    “I don’t know what’s going on there. Bob Watson ought to take a look at it. Braun hits a home run, they drill him. He hits a home run, his next at-bat they drill him.

    “That’s evidence enough for me for some guys to get suspended for quite a bit.”

    “Now, if they’re just wild, tell them to get the ball over the plate.”

    “We’re respecting what’s going on. Hit the ball, run around the bases.”

    “I’ve always said that our guys dig in. They’re not moving. That’s why they’re good hitters. Appearantly they want to pitch Prince inside but in the middle of the back, that’s a little more than inside.”

    Seriously, what a moron. What, is he best buds with Tony “Hateable face” LaRussa? It’s like one of the early commenters said…Bobby Cox has been managing 30 years and has NEVER been a guy to have his team headhunt…and now he’s going to start in the 2nd half during a pennant race in his last season managing? Common freaking sense. Guys miss, accidentally hit people – it happens. That has never been a Cox team. I have a lot of issues with Cox sometimes in lineup and bullpen choices, but he’s never been a manager who goes after people.

    No one will remember Ken Macha when Phil Donahue is fired after the season anyway. What a loser.

  69. Nothing like walking into a staff bathroom after someone just dropped a steamer. Kill me.

    I hate off days.

  70. Would either Blanco or McLouth play much againsy southpaws? Sending B;anco down now makes little difference. He needs to play more at AAA anyway. Blanco will be up in September if not sooner.

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