Braves 10, Cardinals 7

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – May 30, 2012 – ESPN.

Tim Hudson blew a five-run lead, but the Braves won anyway with the return of Freddie Freeman and the return to form of fellow eye problem sufferer Brian McCann.

In the first, McCann hit a two-run homer and Freeman a solo shot for a 3-0 lead. McCann grounded into a double play in the third, but later Freeman doubled in Dan Uggla and Jose Constanza singled in Freeman to make it 5-0.

At that point, that looked like plenty, as Hudson had retired the first nine men in a row and is well known for holding on to leads like that. It wasn’t to be. Rafael Furcal singled leading off the fourth and came around to score. But it was the sixth that was the problem inning. Hudson allowed four of the first six men to reach on three singles and a walk to score a run and load the bases. After a two-run single cut it to 5-4, Fredi brought in Jonny Venters, spiralling out of a late inning role. Venters allowed a single to tie the game before getting a flyout to end the inning.

The Braves grabbed the lead right back. Leading off, Jose Constanza reached on an infield single, which is likely enough. He then went to second on a wild pitch, sure. But Jack Wilson doubling him in? Really unlikely, but it happened. Later in the inning, with two out, McCann hit a two-run single to make it 8-5.

Chad Durbin got through the seventh, but then Eric O’Flaherty had a rough eighth that wasn’t all his fault, with an infield single and an error contributing to two runs, cutting it to 8-7. The Braves got the runs back in the bottom of the inning, Uggla scoring pinch-runner Tyler Pastornicky on a sac fly, and Freeman driving in Michael Bourn with a single. The Braves’ one reliable part, Craig Kimbrel, pitched through a Wilson error in the ninth, getting two strikeouts and a flyout.

After the game, the Braves demoted Pastornicky and brought up Andrelton Simmons. Let’s see what happens.

288 thoughts on “Braves 10, Cardinals 7”

  1. Wow, didn’t see that they made the move at SS.
    It can’t hurt at this point.

  2. I like the Rev. Unfortunately he is not a ML SS. He looks like a 2B trying to play SS. I think given some time in AAA , he can help the team down the line.

  3. I’ve defended Pastornicky as much as anyone, but there’s no doubt that Simmons had played himself into the spot and Pastornicky had played himself out of it.

  4. I hope they let Pastornicky play second or center in AAA.

    I think he might have some value at one of those spots. I think the kid can hit.

  5. Yeah, I agree you all. The least to expect is an improvement on defense. Hopefully he hits a little bit too. Does anyone know about his speed/baserunning?
    I fully expect Pastornicky to be back later this year. I agree with Smitty and think he has some offensive value. If nothing else he can take Jack Wilson’s place.

  6. I guess they want Pastornicky playing every day, but Wilson is extremely useless with Simmons as the starter. Maybe his pinch-bunting skills will come in handy.

  7. It says something about this organization that, as someone else said, they replace one rookie not ready for the majors with another who also might not be ready for the majors at a critical position. It’s the unwillingness to spend the extra dime that kills the team in situations like this. Maybe there weren’t a lot of great options over the winter, but I have to believe they could have done better than Pastornicky. I suspect the organization knew he wasn’t ready-and might not even be a shortstop anyway-but they crossed their fingers and hoped. In the early 90s, JS brought in Pendleton and Bream to help a young pitching staff. Now, though, they have the worst possible infield for this staff. Maybe Simmons can at least catch a ground ball.

  8. Wow. The Braves aren’t messing around. So are we satisfied if Simmons can give us what AGon gave us?

    I feel bad for Tyler Pastornicky, but he is the poster child for differences between a good baseball player and a good MAJOR league baseball player.

  9. When Chipper returns, I think they should consider demoting Jason to give him time to find himself again.

  10. I think I agree with KC.

    I just don’t want another summer of Constanza v. Heyward. The braves are at their best when Heyward is hitting rockets and getting on base. I think there is no arguing this point.

    Heyeard may never hit .300 but I will take .260 with a healthy walk rate and slugging % (translating into a high OPS) and that will translate well in to WAR and team wins.

    Constanza seems to have decent on base skills and is a speedy base runner. Obviously he does not have the pop or upside of Heyward, but if Heyward keeps whiffing a ton and not getting on base, what other options does the team have?

    I am beginning to question what sample size do we need weigh more when judging Heyward, 2010 or the last year and a third.

    Man, I want Heyward to fix his issues and start hitting again.

  11. If you demote Jason, who do you replace him with? Constanza? That’s not something I want on an everyday basis. And it would mean playing Francisco until Chipper gets back. I don’t think the Braves have much alternative to playing Jason and hoping he figures things out. At least he provides some occasional pop. As bad as he is playing, I just don’t see demoting him as a realistic alternative unless the Braves were to go out and acquire an outfielder and you know they aren’t going to do that.

  12. Agreed. If you demote Heyward you don’t gain anything offensively and you lose defense by playing Hinske or Diaz out there every day (in addition to Constanza.)

  13. I think Simmons will be a better fit for this team moving forward. The Braves need a good glove guy at SS. Stu is also correct and Jack Wilson is completely useless on this team now.

    I really dont know what they should do with Heyward at this point. We really need his defense in RF and I really dont want Hinske/Diaz in a RF platoon.

  14. Drew Sutton would have been such a good fit with Simmons. Too bad we traded him for a bag of practice balls.

  15. My guess is that T-Pas is only down at Gwinnett to play everyday and get his confidence back. Assuming Andrelton steadies our infield defense and delivers acceptable performance at the bat, I’m guessing we’ll see T-Pas back on the team after we cut Wilson.

    Their pairing reminds me of a rookie version of the Belliard/Blauser combo.

  16. Please, in the name of all the gods, high and low, let’s not call him “T-Pas.” PLEASE!

  17. I wonder how much the Freeman endorsement is worth to Oakley? Contacts are a bit of a “pain” to the eyes at times.

  18. Heyward .233/.327/.413
    Hinske .233/.296/.301
    Diaz .259/.339/.407

    Hinkse and Diaz are specialist and these are their stats against pitchers they should be hitting. There isnt any upside offensively and you are downgrading your offense. Braves should consider letting Heyward play against RH’rs (.823OPS) and then maybe sitting him against lefties (.587OPS).

  19. The Braves have worked on their offense; they really need to focus on the defense. It’s killing the pitching, especially since they really don’t have power arms in the rotation. They can’t really do much about third or second at this point, but they presumably have helped themselves at short. The best case moving forward-after Bourn presumably leaves-may be playing Heyward in center where his defense (assuming it transfers from RF)is more valuable and where his offense is more of a bonus, like with Andruw.

  20. I saw Simmons when the Miss braves played the Barons, and he is slick as owl shit in the field. I mean, great range, huge arm, and very smooth. A huge upgrade.

    He did not look good at the plate at all that day, but it looks like he has started to hit some.

    His value over T-Pas in the field will be immeasurable.

  21. He would not go down forever, but some minor league time (say two to three weeks) should do him a world of good.

  22. Runs Saved at SS

    Best 3
    Brendan Ryan +16
    Mike Aviles +13
    Yunel Escobar +10

    Worst 3
    Derek Jeter -8
    Jose Reyes -11
    Tyler Pastornicky -16

  23. Yeah, this Pastornicky experiment had hit critical mass. Too many playable balls weren’t getting converted into outs. Tyler is range-challenged & glove-challenged—his throws weren’t always so great either.

    So it seems that we’ll have a near-automatic out hitting 8th every day. Get used to it, I suppose.

    And for anyone who ever lived in Athens, Ga.—RIP, big man. I have many fond (and fuzzy) memories in your establishments:

  24. I love Hinske, but he’s been declining for 4 years now and (small sample), has been terrible this year.

  25. Can Pastornicky hack the throw from third base? Range is not as much of an issue at 3rd as it is at SS, and if his arm can handle the throw, then maybe he can add some value there?

  26. Speaking of nicknames for players, isn’t it about time we start calling Freeman “Velma?”

  27. I’m not worried about Heyward. I think he is having better ABs this year. He still has a hole in his swing though.

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Diaz in right against lefties.

  28. This might be the year, considering the upcoming schedule, where the Braves make a charge late in the season, a la Cards and Giants the last two years. They will be lucky to get through June still over .500 but I expect the division will still be bunched. As the schedule gets easier, they may be able to put together a run. At least I hope so; it’s hard to be too optimistic about June.

  29. I’m definitely worried about Heyward, but there’s no realistic options there besides letting him play through it and hoping things get better. If we had someone in the minors that could push him then I’d probably feel different.

  30. If it makes anyone feel better, Drew Sutton has cooled off considerably since his hot start for the Rays. He had a 1.343 OPS after three games, but in his last 18 at bats he’s hit one single, with no walks and 8 strikeouts. Season OPS is now .601.

  31. @24

    Sky always provided nurturing environments for my buddies and I to hustle frat boys at pool, while he sweet-talked their girlfriends two or three at a time. Blurry memories, indeed. RIP

  32. #35
    When I remember Sky’s Place, I think of Monday nights with cheap pitchers, free hot-dogs and Salt N Pepa’s “Push It” on the jukebox.

  33. @38- they’ve got a 7-day DL down in the minors, so he’s eligible to come off any day. I have no insight as to when it might happen. You’ll need to find something written by an actual beat reporter or prospect hound, as they don’t really publish releases down there.

  34. One of my favorite memories is attending a gameshow at the Theatre hosted by Wilmont Green, and participating in a scavenger hunt. One of the items on the hunt list was finding Sky and buying him a Coors Light. There were about ten teams and I think we all found him and got him a beer.

    Also,I once saw him walking around Five Points wearing a shirt with a big picture of his own face on it. Hilarious.

  35. I mentioned this the other day, but Heyward’s LD% is 20.0%. That’s higher than even 2010. It should translate to a much higher BABIP, but he looks very unlucky in the batted ball data.

    Also, he walks in 11% of his PAs. That’s quite good. His K% is still too high though.

  36. If it makes anyone feel better, Drew Sutton has cooled off considerably since his hot start for the Rays. He had a 1.343 OPS after three games, but in his last 18 at bats he’s hit one single, with no walks and 8 strikeouts. Season OPS is now .601.

    Wait. You mean a career minor leaguer did not magically become Barry Bonds on the infield after being traded for pocket lint, twice?


  37. I thought college football coaches couldn’t be more of an embarrassment than they are now, but I guess I was wrong.

  38. @24 – I walked into the Taco Stand a few years ago in Athens with my brother to have a few beers and watch the end of the Braves game at the bar. Sky was sitting there having a beer. My brother knows Sky a little, so we sit down next to him, have our drinks and chat him up. This was a west coast game (Dodgers, I think), so it was late. Glavine had started. They show Glavine on the screen sitting in the dugout for just a second, and out of nowhere Sky stands up, slams his fists on the bar, points at the screen and screams “!#&* you Glavine, you !#&*’n traitor!” and walks out. With that voice you could probably hear it all the way down the street.

    Great memory.

  39. I have seen some pictures of Franklin’s wife. Let’s say she is no Allison Dooley.

  40. @48,

    Never having seen either, am I to assume that I would prefer to see Allison Dooley?

  41. Mrs. Franklin is significantly — significantly — more attractive than Mrs. Dooley.

  42. Please, in the name of all the gods, high and low, let’s not call him “T-Pas.” PLEASE! – Sam

    Looks like he already has a nickname.

    Billy Bullock ‏@BillyBullock
    Congrats to Simba makin his big league debut tom! Gonna miss him playin behind us!! Guy can pick it!

  43. I thought Huge Shit was Kimbrel’s nickname. Or was that just talking about his stuff? Either way I’m not a fan of it.

    Not gonna lie, I kind of like T-Pas…

    Little Nicky, perhaps?

  44. Oh, it was definitely Andrelton Simmons, who was viewed by many as a relief prospect when he was drafted. The quote came from a scout who told Kevin Goldstein that Simmons had “huge shit out of the ‘pen.”

  45. And, no, Smitty, we cannot agree on Layla Kiffin. I know I’m in the minority, but bleach-blond tanning-bed frequenters do not do much for me.

  46. Ah, my mistake. I’m gonna call him Dre.

    And I’m gonna have to back up Smitty on this one. Layla Kiffin by a mile and a half.

  47. And, no, Smitty, we cannot agree on Layla Kiffin. I know I’m in the minority, but bleach-blond tanning-bed frequenters do not do much for me.

    Discussions about the value of coaches wives as sexual objects. Must be an SEC digression.

  48. You know, you’re right that this is objectification, and I’m sorry. I should have stuck to my original point, which is simply that any suggestion that James Franklin has an unattractive wife is untrue.

  49. We need an off day thread topic. You that are knowledgeable of high school and collegiate players, who do you think we should draft with our 21st pick?

  50. You know, you’re right that this is objectification, and I’m sorry.

    You’re going to fail the internet if you keep this up.

  51. Well there’s a guy who is number 29 on ESPN’s top high school baseball prospects who goes to my old high school. That would be kind of cool.

  52. There’s a guy from my high school in the draft class as well, but I don’t think he’ll make it through to 29. Some “Buxton” kid.

  53. T-Pas is kinda meta. I’ll try to unpack it for y’all:

    A friend and fellow Braves fan and I have always thought it a bit ridiculous that so many ballplayers are nicknamed by merging the initial of their first name with the first syllable of their last name.

    Instead of classic nicknames like Hammerin’ Hank or The Splendid Splinter, or even dumb ones like “Big Tuna”*, we get boring, default nicknames like A-Rod, A-Gon, B-Mac, J-Hey, or K-Rod (“clever” variation there). Etc. The list goes on.

    Every now and then I’m moved to do something similar where the nickname is a really absurd combo. T-Pas is one of those. It’s pretty lame, but that’s what makes it both funny and serviceable at pointing out how ridiculous the convention really is.

    I do understand that the humor like this takes place on a level of understanding far higher than Sam can comprehend, even if he had the patience for it, which he doesn’t, so it is out of respect for him that I will forthwith cease calling him T-Pas. My first post in this comment thread is the last time you’ll ever hear me call him that.

    Instead, I will begin calling him TPFKATPAS.

    * The Office reference.

  54. Re: 72- I generally agree with your disdain for the “first initial – first syllable of last name” nicknaming convenction, but in the case of Jason Heyward, I enjoy “J-Hey” as a Willie Mays (“The Say-Hey Kid”; they wrote a whole song about it) pun.

    On another topic, anyone else super excited to see Simmons in action at SS tomorrow?

  55. We all know the Braves will take a soft tossing lefty and the “next Glavine” stuff will start.

  56. What was the last really good baseball nickname? The Big Hurt?

    I also really like Bad Henry County.

  57. Billy Butler of the Royals is apparently nicknamed “Country Breakfast.” That is a great nickname.

    And if Delgado and Minor are pitching for their jobs, we can thank goodness that it’s Minor who’s getting the newly promoted defensive whiz behind him. Wouldn’t want to hear him moan that Delgado got an unfair advantage.

  58. By the way, Freeman’s gonna be wearing the glasses from here on in, and he’s not quite sure what he’ll do about day games because there aren’t any sunglasses with the same prescription yet.

    I don’t see me going back to contacts because my eyes, I still can’t put contacts in there so there’s no reason to go back to square 1 with that and have my eyes burning and all that stuff…
    Everything was fine. The only thing I’m going to have to worry about is, like, a day game, a sun ball, just have to figure out what I’m going to do there.

  59. 83 – Might I suggest shielding the sun with your glove?

    Or he could get some of those sunglasses that go over your glasses. (Would be perfect if they were playing in Miami.) But then there might be a fight over who gets the “Huge S***” nickname.

  60. “Country Breakfast” for Butler is a good one. Hadn’t heard that one before.

  61. It was easy for Cox to be a good “players’ manager,” because any players like Escobar that gave him any trouble were quickly shipped away.

  62. Cubs are fielding offers on everyone but Castro and Samardzija. DeJesus and Dempster could make this team a lot better.

  63. Country Breakfast? That’s awesome.
    This talk of nicknames made me recall an Arizona fan’s sign from the ’01 World Series:

    ‘It takes more than 9 Yanks to beat our Big Unit.’

    Is it bad that I find this funny even though I turn 30 on Monday?

  64. I would think that it would take a ton to get Castro. Probably 3-4 top prospects.

  65. Stolen from Brian White @ BaseballThinkFactory:

    “Cumulative WAR by players from Curacao, by team:

    Atlanta Braves: 69.4
    All other MLB teams: 1.2”

    Here’s a glass raised to Simmons adding to the Braves massive Curacao advantage!

  66. There was an article on fangraphs the other day about how Castro was on pace to have fewer walks than base on balls.. A rare feat.

    Interestingly enough, Ozzie Guillen did it twice.

  67. Opps. I meant to say that he was on pace to have fewer walks than caught stealing.

  68. Btw, the lack of an edit feature easily lowers one’s perceived IQ by 20 points.

    What’s worse, I actually proof read 98 like 6 or 7 times before I clicked submit.

  69. I’m supposed to go to the game tomorrow but the weather forecast is for thunderstorms; the rest of the weekend (naturally) is supposed to be nice. I’m sure they will do everything they can to get the game in and avoid rainchecks but not sure I want to “brave” the elements.

  70. A guy who has fewer walks than strikeouts is not someone I would want in a trade.

  71. MLBTR

    David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Twitter link) predicts Braves outfielder Michael Bourn will look for a five- or six-year contract with an average annual value of around $15MM when he hits free agency after this season. The Braves were known to be looking for young center field talent last winter since they weren’t keen on paying Bourn such a large contract, though his strong performance thus far in 2012 could change the team’s mind.

    Jair Jurrjens “is a guy that other clubs need to get back on,” says a scout who has seen Jurrjens pitch in Triple-A, tweets Danny Knobler of CBS Sports. The Braves dangled Jurrjens as trade bait during the offseason, though if he really was back on form, you would think Atlanta would want him to help its own struggling pitching rotation. Jurrjens has a 4.85 ERA and a 2.63 K/BB ratio in six minor league starts this season, pitching very well in four outings but getting rocked in two others.

  72. @102 Same here, though I can’t say I’d be too sore about missing the thrilling Minor/Strasburg math-up.

  73. I’d pay 5/$75 for Bourn. There’s just no other way we’re going to get that production at a cheaper rate anywhere else, neither via trade, nor free agency, nor internal promotion.

    I’d balk at 6/$90, though, not least because we simply don’t have the kind of money to pay market rate all that often.

  74. Over at CAC, a guy named Ben Duronio posted the following:

    “… with Freeman being roughly average-ish at first”

    There is a thin line between remotely acceptable opinion and bullshit, and that’s bullshit. I wonder if Mr. Duronio has ever seen Freddie play. He is an elite first baseman. Give credit when due!

  75. Freeman is great around the bag but all the defensive metrics hate him because he has no range. Ben knows what he’s talking about.

  76. Yeah, “roughly average-ish” is probably generous. Freddie is a below-average first baseman.

  77. @109
    If Wednesday night was any indication, those defensive metrics are going to start swinging Freddie’s way because he was flat gettin’ it on and around the bag. Maybe his vision was more of a problem than what he’d previously thought.

  78. @110

    I agree. I think he misses someball that he should get. However, he more that makes up for it with the erros he saves.

    I hope Rev paid up on all the Cokes he owes Freeman before he went across town.

  79. ‘I hope Rev paid up on all the Cokes he owes Freeman before he went across town.’

    Not T-Pas? Huge Shit?

    Maybe Freeman should turn Wilson on to his optometrist.

  80. @106: Strasburg would have Minor beat in a “math-up” because he is used to big numbers in his paycheck.

  81. AJC Braves twitter says Gattis’ injury is tendinitis in wrist, not serious.”

    He went on the list May 19.

    Next question: how long does it take to treat non-serious wrist tendinitis?

  82. Btw, “Hatfields and McCoys” series on the History channel is very good. Check it out.

  83. Blanco putting up good numbers for San Francisco as their everyday RF and leadoff hitter: .289/.401/.421
    He’s already up to a 1.4 WAR.

  84. @120 – That’s annoying because he had flashed those abilities while in Atlanta and yet was always one of the Braves “irrational dislike” guys.

    But what really pisses me off is that Smelky has turned into a legit player and was just an apathetic tub of lard during his stay here. It would make me very happy if we went Hamels/Harper on him when we play the Giants this year.

  85. Yeah, I say we throw one six inches behind his posterior and tell him if this was 2010 he could have taken his base.

  86. Would the Sox bite on a Jurrjens for Youkilis trade with the Sox kicking in the difference in salary? If Youkilis rebounds, the 13 million dollar option for ’13 would look tempting, as would the 3rd year of arbitration for Jurrjens for the Sox. Also, it would give the Braves much needed 3b/1b insurance if Chipper has to sit often or Freddie’s eyes go dry again.

  87. #121 – I dont believe Blanco was an irrational dislike guy.

    Its funny/sad that we traded Blanco, benched Melky, and got Ankiel. Now Melky and Blanco are the two best OF’rs for the Giants.

    Melky, who I now hate more than anyone, is posting a .373/.417/.550 line after his .303/.339/.470 2011. I guess he and Yunel were really partying it up at night. Yunel started sucking right after we trade Pena right?

  88. Duronio writes at Fangraphs, too. He’s a smart guy. But at Fangraphs and CAC, he’s basically unable to write anything that directly contradicts the advanced stats.

    To the best of my knowledge the advanced defensive stats still don’t know how to deal with a first baseman’s ability to stretch; they pretty much just measure range. So he has to accept that the negative stats refer to Freeman’s range — which looks pretty good to me, but I’m not in the booth watching every play with a clipboard like the BIS guys who compile the raw data — while also realizing that, as a Braves fan, he knows by eyesight that Freeman is awesome at catching the ball.

    Slightly uncomfortable situation. But he’s pretty good at balancing the analysis with fandom, I think.

  89. #123 – Would the Sox bite on a Jurrjens for Youkilis trade with the Sox kicking in the difference in salary?

    Ive got to ask, what do the Red Sox gain? Youkilis is still a fan favorite in Boston and Im sure they could get much more than a injured pitcher than will be nontendered after the season. We’d have to throw in a good prospect and I dont think they’d be willing to eat salary.

  90. I agree with that assessment based on what my own lying eyes tell me. Seems like Freeman is very good at picking and scooping the ball, but is limited range wise. I know I’ve seen quite a few grounders and liners go past a standing Freddie’s right side that I thought more nimble first basemen would have at least made a diving stab at or backhanded. Also seems like more doubles get between him and the bag than should.

    So I don’t know which is more important for this team: The ability to scoop up junky throws from the likes of Uggla and Francisco, or the ability to keep more balls from finding holes through the infield, especially with guys like Hudson.

    Or maybe Freeman can just work on his range, get better like Pujols did and we can have both!

  91. With Youkilis being owed 12 million and warming Boston’s bench, I don’t think anyone will have to throw in a good prospect to get him.

  92. Duranio on Heyward:

    I understand that stats can tell a different and, often more accurate, story than mere observation, especially periodic observation. But I find this hard to believe. Does anyone really think that Jason Heyward is an All-Star caliber player at this point (other than the first half of 2010)? I understand that’s not exactly what he said, but he seems to be placing a lot of “blame” on balls in play. That seems to be the favored meme whenever someone has stats inconsistent with what is expected. It seems to assume that hits are completely random events.

  93. I seem to have deleted Duranio’s quote about Heyward:

    He started off the year with a lot of balls in play landing for hits, and over the past few weeks they haven’t. I’d like to see the BB/K rate come a bit closer together, but other than that everything is about what expected. I projected around a .350 OBP and .175 ISO to start the year, which is what fans should be expecting out of him at this time. I know everyone wants him to be more, because he was honestly expected to be better, but with those qualities he’s still a 5 win player — which is All-Star level.

  94. @129
    Furthermore, everyone is a fan favorite in Boston if producing as with any city. Suddenly, Salty is the 2nd coming of Varitek because of his newfound leadership abilities (aka abiltiy not to suck).

    Also, the rumblings out of Boston now that Youkilis isnt putting up gaudy numbers is that he’s a clubhouse cancer. Of course…

  95. Youkilis is playing everyday and is hitting .313/.371/.531 since he returned from his injury. It may not take a top prospect, but they can get more than an nontender prospect IMO.

  96. Heyward hasnt been able to touch lefties for the last two years. .577OPS in 2011, .587OPS in 2012. Thats a big concern.

  97. •Yep, he gets nearly $1.2 mill annually for nxt 25 yrs. RT @JDunnah: @ajcbraves @jakepeezy Isn’t Bobby Bo still getting checks from the Mets? 29 mins ago

    Dang. LOL, Mets.

  98. People realize that “a scout” who provided that value-boosting quote about Jurrjens om MLBTR probably works for the Braves, right?

  99. Nice write up, but oh my.

    The Mets wanted to release Bonilla in 2000, but they didn’t want to pay him the remaining $5.9 million on his contract. So, instead, they agreed to defer payment for more than a decade, and then pay him $29.8 million — around $1.2 million a year for 25 years, from 2011 to 2035, starting in about a month. The Mets based the deal on an interest rate of 8 percent, just below the prime rate, and chuckled all their way to the bank because they planned to invest the money they saved with Madoff, expecting his usual 10 to 12 percent returns each year.

  100. Just for fun…this season:

    Pitcher A – 61 IP, 62 H, 26 ER, 7 HR, 26 BB, 3 HBP, 57 K, 2 WP, 10 SB, 91 TB, 4.22 xFIP
    Pitcher B – 62 IP, 55 H, 25 ER, 6 HR, 21 BB, 2 HBP, 58 K, 1 WP, 8 SB, 86 TB, 3.90 xFIP

    Pitcher A is Tommy Hanson. Pitcher B is?

  101. Wouldn’t T-Pas have been better to keep than Wilson? At least the former could probably pinch hit somewhat reliably.

  102. Yep, Shaun Marcum is right.

    I thought that was interesting. Depending on your vantage, that could be either an encouraging or a disappointing comparison of pitcher results.

  103. Lincecum was not a bad guess, his slash lines are in the same category, but worse.

    Lincecum – 60.1 IP, 61 H, 39 ER, 5 HR, 31 BB, 1 HBP, 64 K, 6 WP, 3.89 xFIP

  104. He’s probably still upset at his showing in the Road from Bristol tournament….

  105. @149,

    I saw that. I’m bagging the game. I’m a fan but not that much. Although I bet what will happen is the storm misses and they play the game.

    Of course, if there is a tornado blowing in, this might keep some of Minor’s pitches in the ballpark.

  106. Bethany, take it unless they want you to go blonde. A friend is president of the league of red headed women.

  107. They have to pay Wilson anyway? Does it stall clock on Pastornicky team control?

  108. Jairo Ascensio was released outright by the Indians (picked up by the Cubs I think.) So maybe he wasn’t terribly useful after all.

  109. Tonight’s tornado-enhanced lineup:

    1. Bourn CF
    2. Prado 3B
    3. McCann C
    4. Uggla 2B
    5. Freeman 1B
    6. Heyward RF
    7. Simmons SS
    8. Minor P
    9. Constanza LF

  110. So, in the spirit of Fred “Fire Dog” McGriff, do we now have Andrelton Simmons, Human Tornado?

  111. Well, correct me if I’m wrong BUT, with the off day, the Braves could have skipped Minor today, and kept the other 4 guys on regular rest. By going with Minor, everyone else gets 1 extra day of rest. If we were rained out today, and we pitched Minor tomorrow, all the other starters would have TWO extra days rest.

    So, wouldn’t a rain-out today increase the odds we don’t have to watch Mike Minor?

  112. I think rainouts are crimes against humanity! I think that the government KNEW about this rainout and they didn’t want to tell us! I think that rainouts are used as an instrument of control to keep the populace subservient! I think that rainouts ought to be destroyed by popular revolution!

  113. My teenage nieces are coming down to Richmond from DC with their mother. Traffic is slow and it is raining. If rain stops they will take bypass and go to I64 to I81. No rain cheer from Woodstock.

  114. It’s Washington – who can we blame? Especially considering politics is off limits. I suppose we could blame Dan Snyder…

  115. We really could skip Minor and Delgado in this series. We could throw Beachy, Hanson, Hudson if they make up this game Monday instead of a DH tomorrow. That Monday start would actually be Hudson on normal rest right?

  116. Hindsight of course, and Wren obviously couldn’t have predicted it or trade the team’s then-ace while in contention; but how great would a Jurrjens trade in July 2011 have been?

  117. #176: Might as well revisit the topic since it’s rained out and what else ya gonna do, but…

    I know there were people here during Jair’s All-Star run who were very vocal about trading him. Yes, it would have given us a very nice return, and yes, hindsight has proven that that is exactly what she would have done.

    But I need it repeated again exactly how it would have been justified that you would trade a guy that was dealing like that; a young, cost-controlled guy having what appeared to be a breakthrough season?

  118. JJ is either really great or really awful in his starts down there. Never really in between.

  119. DOB says it will be Beachy tomorrow, Hanson Sunday, Hudson Tuesday, Delgado Wednesday, and Minor Thursday. Theoretically they could skip Minor again on Thursday since Beachy would have 4 days rest.

  120. Greetings from Minneapolis…

    No-no alert: Johan Santana is thru 7 IP without giving up any hits. However, he’s already thrown 107 pitches.

    If he gets it, that would be the very first in the history of the NY Mets. The only other team without one is San Diego.

  121. In recent years, I’ve always enjoyed listening to Howie Rose call Mets games on radio. He’s a Queens guy who grew up rooting for the Mets, buying tickets in the upper deck of Shea Stadium.

    In each game, when the opposing team gets its first hit, Howie would say with a genuine degree of resignation, “Well, that’s the (fill in the #) game that the New York Mets have not had a no-hitter.”

    For the record, this was game 8,020.

  122. How much will be made of the Beltran hit that was ruled foul in the 6th? Not much, I’m sure.

  123. I liked the no no-hitter factoid as convenient shorthand for the Mets’ franchise ineptitude, so I don’t like this.

    LOL Mets, forever

  124. “Out, out brief candle” – the epitaph on James Franklin’s coaching headstone.

  125. #189
    The Mets radio announcers mentioned it every inning after it happened.

    And when they interviewed Santana after the game, they asked him about it.

  126. @193, I’d settle for a CG.

    @192, I mean in terms of building the case for instant replay. The SABR conquest of baseball is nearing completion. Maybe this’ll be next.

    The Mets have a no-hitter. The Mets. What more could be said to utterly invalidate the human element?

  127. @193

    And the last two (well, one and a half) wasn’t thrown by Maddux, Glavine, Smoltz or Avery, but by Kent Merker.

  128. @194, Hard to believe he didn’t realize he wasn’t wanted during a whole offseason of trade rumors.

    This already is as bad as it could get for the Braves, in that he’s at his lowest value imaginable. If his own discontentment causes him to underperform and to make dumb decisions like pitching while ill, he really can’t do any worse by the organization and is only harming himself.

  129. Can someone explain why Melky Cabrera sucked balls in 2010 for us but is now somehow a hitting god?

    F*** him.

  130. I still think JJ will come out of this. He’s young and he doesn’t appear to have physical issues that can’t be addressed. Unfortunately he will join the list of players the Braves have lost without any compensation that have continued to perform in MLB. In the long run this just weakens the team.

  131. The Mets have also already had someone hit for the cycle this season.

    If the season ended today, they’d have the last Wild Card spot.

    I hope they all die in a fire.

  132. @194

    If intuition translated into ability, Jurrjens would have just won the Cy Young in June.

  133. @199

    Well, there could be a physical issue. He has had knee issues over the last few years that some people think could more serious than the Braves let on.

  134. I need y’all to start a stimulating discussion so I can more efectively avoid doing my job today.

  135. #198
    Melky came to Braves spring training out of shape, with a falafel & a bag of jellybeans hanging out of his back pockets.

    I just think he had an existential moment after he left the Braves when he realized he’d better take this game a little more seriously.

    Either that, or his PED masking agents are really working.

  136. David O’Brien ‏@ajcbraves

    #Braves lineup: 1. Bourn CF, 2. Prado 3B, 3. McCann C, 4. Uggla 2B, 5. Freeman 1B, 6. Heyward RF, 7. Simmons SS, 8. Beachy P, 9 Constanza LF

  137. The first strike called on Uggla looked like the exact spot Beachy hit in the first two pitches of Harper’s at-bat (except on the other side of the plate). Both of Beachy’s were called as balls.

    Strasburg’s got enough going for him without your help, ump.

  138. Aside from throwing so many pitches,Beachy seems like he’s working slowly today.

  139. We need a run this inning, or Fredi’s going to send Lisp in there, and leave him in until its out of hand.

  140. Mac, you’re undefeated since your return. You might want to conjure up some runs.

  141. I don’t think either of our other shortstops would have made that play look so easy. I’m not sure Pastornicky makes that playh at all.

  142. Yeah, we need to upgrade behind the plate. Brian’s offense no longer carries his defense.

  143. Venters is dangerous to everyone but the opponent these days.

  144. Why can’t we play 9 crisp innings? Even if we lose, can’t we just not lose stupid?

  145. It is sad that Venters has become so average.
    That is why you don’t pay relievers to long term contracts.

  146. We have to get some right handed bench help. This team is STILL entirely too lefthanded.

  147. They called that pitch that McCann muffed a wild pitch? If I was trying to explain a “passed ball” I might say “like, if the pitcher threw a fastball, that wasn’t in the dirt, and the catcher just… didn’t catch it.”

  148. I agree. It should be a passed ball, even if BMac was expecting a breaking ball.

  149. @ 230 – I don’t beleive we could get Strasburg for our Minor Leagues and Jair.

  150. @283

    The only way we could get him is to kidnap him, brainwash him to believe his name was Teve Trasburg.

  151. At this point, I think the best course of action is to trade all the good players, sign the bad players to long term deals, move the team to Bermuda, knock down the stadium, and salt the earth where it once stood. Then we can pretend this baseball thing never happened.

  152. I thin if Ross isn’t ready to caom back for a full game and McCann is out, it would be best to let Diaz catch.

  153. The Braves need to move out of Atlanta so they can get out of the Eastern Division. It’s clearly too much for them. If they move to Bermuda, what division would they be in? If they were in the Central, they might be able to beat out the Cubs, Pirates, and Astros.

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