115 thoughts on “Game thread: Aug. 21, Braves at Harmless, Adorable Little Cubbies”

  1. ryan c. @ 1,

    I don’t think it is fair to say that La Stella is “old for level”. He is 22, this is his first pro season, and he has started at Low A which is about right (maybe a “great” college player starts at high A).

    I don’t know about the “log jam” but I would like Gattis to get the next 15 days or so at Lynchburg (maybe Garcia, too).

  2. @134 (previous thread) – Bleacher Report is a complete joke. Cheryl is actually Sherrill against lefties. He has a .67 (!) FIP with 14 k/9 and .4 (!!) bb/9. Much better than Linebrink, who the author apparently really likes.

  3. Also, that column says there’s a 5% chance of a Chipper Jones’ return, written all of four days before Jones definitively announced he’ll be back in 2012.

  4. @3
    You’re right. It is about right for a College player to start at Low A ball, but it doesnt change the fact that he’s 22 in Low A ball and that his success should be taken with that into consideration.

  5. Rollins to DL but Polanco activated. What’s Hamels status? If he misses any more time, that could aid our attempts to not settle for 2nd.

    Sam’s right we should play for first as unlikely as us passing the Phils may be. Seems to be a big difference between hosting the West winner (as this past week showed) and traveling to Milwaukee (team with the best home record I think).

  6. Man, that column was a trip. I love how his % are so arbitrary: 2% for Sherrill returning, but 20% for Linebrink, although both of them returning are dependent on them taking pay cuts. This guy’s logic is impeccable as are his writing skills. F’rinstance, on Derek Lowe: “Chance of returning in 2012: 10 percent because he may be pitching his way into being immovable.”

    Translation: An extremely low percentage chance he’ll return because of the extremely high percentage chance he’s playing his way into being immovable.


  7. That’s the format at BleacherReport, loads and loads of content, with no content to it. Everything is done as a “Slideshow” to increase mass pageviews. All the titles are inflammatory or outright ridiculous. It’s like sports porn.

  8. Obviously, the Braves are going to play to win each game and try to win the division. The issue is not that–it’s what happens if you come down to the last few games and you are, say a game behind and, say, Hudson scheduled to pitch on Sunday, which would make him unavailable for the first game of the playoffs. Assuming that you have the WC wrapped up, do you go ahead and pitch him in order to win the division or hold off? Similarly, do you give guys rest down the stretch or keep playing them to win the division. This wasn’t an issue in 1993 because you had to win to make the playoffs. I think that no team would or should sacrifice their playoff chances to win the division if they already are likely to make the playoffs. I agree it would be a lot better to not have to open in Milwaukee but I would rather finish second and win the World Series than finish first and lose in the playoffs.

  9. Yeah, glad I wasnt the only one who thought that was a ridiculous poor written article.

    He didnt mention Kawakami.

  10. LOL! Why am I continuing to read this guy? I have things I need to be doing.

    A few nuggets from his comments:

    • “As I stated in the article, Jurrjens has a 90% chance of being back. Mainly because Lowe has a 10% chance of being immovable.”

    • “…I think the main thing to focus on is the percentages which I attached to them. They should all be taken lightly…”

    • “Constanza, Jurrjens, Moylan and Hinske will all more than likely be back according to my article … (Hinske has a 100% chance, Constanza has a 99%, I believe).”

    • “Honest, on Chipper…I think HE knows he’s pretty much done. I know he’s still been productive, but like I said…he and I share the trait of pride. I’m fairly positive it eats at him everyday that he’s no longer the everyday force he was…and being “demoted” to 6th in the order probably has really woken him up to the fact that he’s not “The Man” in Atlanta anymore.”

    God bless him, he’s a Braves fan so he’s alright in my book. But gee whiz, what trivial analysis and crappy writing…

  11. I say that protecting the rotation & the bullpen comes before gunning it for the division.

    Plus, I don’t see the Phils tanking too much from here to Sept. 28.

  12. Heyward sits again. Constanza’s last 5 games: .154/.267/.154. By the rules of hand temperature (which are really, really stupid), Constanza has a cold hand. So now that the paper thin excuse is gone, quit dicking around with Heyward and play him. Friggin Frediot.

  13. Seems pretty simple to me. If, after that week-long stretch where we travel to Philadelphia and St. Louis (the last big road trip of the season), we’re within 3-4 games, go for it. If not, start resting people over the last 2-3 weeks. Tilting at windmills is pointless, but we won’t know how good a chance we have at the division until after that road trip (particularly the Philly leg, obviously). So continue playing full-strength (obviously…we haven’t locked up the wild card yet) and then reassess after that.

  14. .273/.333/.364

    Sucky line *for Heyward*, and misleading as hell, but pretty darn warm on the relative hand temperature scale, by the rules of said scale.

  15. I mean, it’s one thing to choose a bad set of rules on which to base your decisions, which is kind of what many of us argued was happening when Heyward was initially demoted to 4th OF, but it’s a completely different thing to not even consistently apply those rules later on, which is what’s happening now. It’s not about playing the hot hand anymore, it’s about playing the guy that Fredi perceives is better, completely independent of facts. It’s “Their [numbers are] all about the same,” Gonzalez said. “But you feel like Schafer is doing so much more” all over again. Frediot defined.

  16. I feel like I just had one of those ex-girlfriend relapses that will happen occasionally, where you feel like you’ve finally moved on and all the old bad feelings are pretty well in the past, and then a friend says he saw her somewhere and suddenly you revert to your 2-weeks-post-breakup self for a few minutes until you calm down again. We had some good times, Jason, but that’s all behind us now.

    Edit: @22 – Yes, I apologize. I’ll try not to let it happen again.

  17. It’s going to take a long time for the sheen to fade off Constanza after so much talking up by the axis: DOB-Bowman-Simpson. He’ll have to suck nonstop for two full weeks for anyone to really notice.

  18. David O’Brien:
    “#Braves RH Hanson said arm felt fine and that he only intended to throw short session, saod he’ll throw 1 longer then rehab start Sat.”

    Nine pitches seems like a super-short bullpen session, but I’ll take him at his word, and hope all goes well with his next session.

  19. Personally I hope Fredi continues to use Constanza and Conzstanza continues to be awful just so I can see how Sam tries to spin it. Call it morbid curiosity.

  20. If you think I’m spinning, you’re an idiot. I stated my position on Constanza’s usage within a week of his call-up.

  21. @19 and 20

    He has hit some balls really hard that were right at the RF. Two feet either way and those are doubles.

  22. Whoever allowed the internet on planes should be killed. I get harassed by work non-stop while I can’t do much about it.

  23. @31 – Yeah, I was going to mention how he actually looked really good for the first two games of the DBacks series. Jim Powell mentioned that he looked primed for a breakout on Friday’s broadcast, and then when Fredi sat him Saturday Powell tweeted

    Predicted that Heyward is about to get hot last night. Like his swing the last couple of games. Not in the lineup tonite tho. #Braves #MLB

    You know it’s a strange decision when even the announcers seem puzzled on twitter.

  24. Just heard Leo (I think it was him) refer to warming up a pitcher in the bullpen then not bringing him in as “dry humping the guy”.

  25. @27, A giant among men. So many great songs.

    Uh, JJ stinking up the joint so far…

    Edit: Whew, wiggled off the hook there. He’s probably loose now, on the bright side.

  26. Chip: “Now Chipper hits one to right field!!!!!!” (as Chipper looks dejected and the outfielders job to 10 feet in front of the track to catch it)

  27. The 4-for-4 has begun…

    UPDATE: Constanza went and blew the sac bunt by stealing second. Way to go.

    UPDATE: Pressure on the defense! Pressure on the defense!

  28. Every time Costanza gets a hit, I think of the groundhog seeing his shadow and Heyward being benched for 6 more weeks.

  29. Okay, so someone needs to do an intervention with Don regarding his usage of the word “literally.” I forget which pitcher he was referring to, but whoever it was was “literally” hammered in their last outing.

  30. Heh. The vagaries of batting average right there. With no runners on, both Prado and Uggla likely have infield singles. With the force at 2B, though, they’re force plays and hence outs.

  31. @48,
    While we’re at it, let’s get Chip the definition of “irony.” I can’t think of a single instance of him using that term properly.

  32. I don’t know what’s more amazing–that Georgie is still starting against righties or that the decision continues to find defenders.

  33. It bears mentioning that pointing out that your whining and crying is absurd doesn’t actually amount to a defense of that which you’re whinging and crying about.

  34. Congrats to Dan for extending his own record and becoming the first second baseman to hit 30 HR in five different seasons!

  35. See, if Mike Quade was smart, that would be a giant red flag for him. Alex Gonzalez walks once every three months.

  36. Well, pressure on the defense might have just gotten himself injured. Hope not! Shake it off, Georgie…

    UPDATE: Nope. Out of the ballgame. Shoot.

  37. All right, who on here has been playing with their Jose Constanza voodoo doll tonight???????

  38. #68
    What’s he doing? Probably taking it out on the little guy.

    (I know… I know…)

    Constanza hurt, apparently. Cue #22…

  39. @74: Talking with some suit, as best I can tell. A pretty politician-y thing to be doing at a ballgame.

  40. Twelve baserunners in six innings and the LolCubs get no runs. JJ, you can’t pitch like this against good teams.

  41. @77: Seriously. 4 unintentional walks, and the Cubs have squared up plenty of balls. I’m guessing he’d rather be lucky than good, though.

  42. Jurrjens has got the jacket on his pitching arm in the dugout. Looks like Fredi is gonna get his 7 innings, come hell, high water, or a season-ending injury.

  43. WHAT?!?!?!?!?!?! Does Fredi think it’s that kid from “Rookie of the Year?”

    Is he going to throw underhand to trick the batter an pay homage to him mom?

  44. Ha, well that long drive that just went foul certainly tells us nothing about Jurrjens’ effectiveness. After all, it wasn’t a hit!

  45. Was really impressed with Viscaino’s ability to change speeds. I’m looking forward to seeing more of this guy!

  46. Jim Powell points out that there was no way for Darwin Barney to rob Dan of his homer earlier. Cut to that scene in The Simpsons, with Mike Quade (as Lisa), stationing Barney on the sidewalk outside the stadium just before Dan’s at-bat.

  47. Sam’s not defending Fredi, he’s just reminding you all that you should shut the hell up because Fredi’s the manager.

  48. I kinda thought he was reminding some to shut the hell up because Heyward isn’t that good and we’re in a pennant race and we are trying to win games, not develop a guy that should be in the minors right now.

  49. I kinda thought he was reminding some to shut the hell up because Heyward isn’t that good and we’re in a pennant race and we are trying to win games

    Heyward is better than Constanza. Your point makes no sense.

  50. Okay, that ridiculous presentation of pitching nonetheless extended our staff’s scoreless streak to 26 straight innings.

    Only 3 runs in the last 45 while we’re at it.

  51. 9 hits and 7 walks for the Cubs, pretty damn fortunate outcome. Still counts just as much though.

  52. Let’s get Solid As A Rock up as tomorrow’s video Mac, both in honor of Nick Ashford and our winning Braves.

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