Braves 2, Nats 1 (Recapped by spike)

And so our last, best hope begins. The division will likely still be a bridge to far, but this is what September baseball is supposed to be — a gin and tonic, the promise of summertime in a glass, delightful to its last sour-sweet sip.

“Karnak” Kris Medlen had the Nats hypnotized all night. A fine defensive play by Andrelton Simmons helped in the third, and in the fourth, Freddie Freeman lifted a double to the opposite field. A fortunate fielder’s choice later, Simmons (no pressure here, kid) cashed in Freddie with a sac fly. And it looked like it might hold up for a minute. Medlen breezed through the fourth, but hung one to the Nats’ enfant terrible, Bryce Harper, who scraped an oppo yicketty to tie it. Medlen righted the ship immediately, finishing with thirteen strikeouts.

Detwiler wasn’t foolin’ em, but yielded just the one run through six. Davey Johnson began going through pitchers like a TKE beer pong table, but it was still tied going into the bottom of the ninth, after Kimbrel dusted the side in the top half.

Fellow Garfield HS alum Jeff Baker (who?) grounded out to deep short, but Simmons had better luck, poking one far enough to the left side for an infield single. “All The Money” Michael Bourn cracked a single to move Simmons to third, and the unlikeliest hero of all, Tyler Pastornicky, bounced to short, but the throw was wide and Simmons plated the game winner.

Just a capital evening of baseball all around, and the pennant race, while faint, remains afoot.

89 thoughts on “Braves 2, Nats 1 (Recapped by spike)”

  1. It would have taken a perfect throw to get Simmons at home. The throw was rushed and wide left. I would say FC, not error. But Pastornicky gets no respect.

  2. “oppo yicketty” is hilarious

    Agreed that Desmond’s only play was at the plate. I think it has to be an error, though, because he so badly threw it away. He didn’t have Simmons “dead to rights”, but it looked to me like a makeable play.

  3. Heh. I don’t remember? :-D

    A bit of Google streetview leads me to recall it was Stoney’s on P near 14th street. I was hanging out upstairs with some folks I just met.

  4. Hey guys! I didn’t even get to watch the game because of blackout restrictions!!! I’m in North Carolina by the way. #mlb.tvforlife!!!!!

    Thanks for the recap though.

  5. Ah, Stoney’s. Not bad. There are a lot of much more upscale joints around there, Stoney’s is nice for being a bar that’s still just a bar. Churchkey, just a block away or so, has an amazing beer selection but is just overrun with hipsters.

  6. It was off balanced difficut play that required above average performance. That the throw was that horrible should not be determinative.

  7. @14 Chipper’s been scuffling lately, so I don’t oppose giving him as much time off as he wants. It is a shame for the home crowd, though.

  8. Anyone else having trouble with I get the sound but no picture. Tried both the home and away broadcast on all games.

  9. Of course, the one time I really can watch the Braves, Hanson is pitching. Seems like he’s always pitching when I am able watch. Hmph.

  10. So… I think Hanson’s days as a good pitcher are over. Barring injury, he might be able to keep doing what he’s doing now (roughly 4.25 ERA) which is a back end starter. That said, he’s about to get expensive. It’s like Jurrjens all over again, except Tommy had legitimate borderline-ace stuff at his peak. Very frustrating to watch.

  11. I just checked Cots Contracts – Hanson will actually just be a first-year arb case next year, so he will probably make something like $3.5M. He should have some value on the trade market, I would think.

  12. Goddamn it. The whole stupid team need to line up outside after games like this and apologize to the fans that stick around.

  13. Listening to these Fox announcers is making this already terrible game excruciating to watch. Feel like I’m watching the WORLD CHAMPION BEST TEAM EVAR Nationals playing minor league rejects.

  14. Just tuned in and I’d ask how Hanson got us in an early hole but I’m afraid I already know the answer.

  15. Perspective: the Braves’ previous run driven in by someone else on a hit was Michael Bourn driving in Constanza in the 5th inning on Sunday. All our runs since then had been on solo homers, errors, sac flies, or double plays.

  16. Hanson seems to have gotten the incompetence out of his system. Of course, he allowed four runs first, so fat lot of good it does us now.

  17. Jason just made me forget that “perfect” 2-0 slider that was gonna dig Jackson out of a hole. Fox announcers are the worst…

  18. A hit, Craig? I’m just not sure that’s going to cut it.

    Good comeback guys, now keep scoring some runs, and stop making errors. You too, Tommy.

  19. Also, MLB Gameday is always good for a laugh. Kimbrel’s 98 mph fastball apparently has a nasty factor of 29 (!) and yes, that’s a scale of 0 to 100.

  20. I think Marvin Hudson should get at least a partial Win Share here. That was an awful call at first.

  21. @77- That actually makes me feel very reassured about Atlanta making the pseudo-playoffs. :-D

    All in all, I had a great day. The Braves, for the second day in a row, pulled out a game in the later innings, and the Gators had a great win over Tennessee. I’m sure others here watched the game, and I’d love to hear your thoughts. Obviously, Florida played much better in the second half, largely due to big plays from the offense (I thought Tennessee’s game plan was to tire out opposing defenses not their own!) and a sharp reduction in penalties. Somehow, Florida’s defense simultaneously stepped up their coverage down field while also getting a much better pass rush. Can’t forget to give Tennessee some credit, too. There were a couple of key drops, and it just seemed like they played flat in the second half. I don’t think they quit or anything, but they definitely played with less confidence/energy/whatever in the second half, and their results reflected it.

    But beating Tennessee is easy. Florida does it every year, even when UF’s team is awful, even when Tennessee’s QB is Peyton Manning. The real tests will come from UGA and SC. (LSU will obviously be the toughest, but I think Florida can still be an elite team with a loss to LSU on their resume. With two SEC losses, less so.) Go Gators!

  22. As another Gator fan, I agree. Florida was a different team in the second half, certainly benefiting from some key bad plays from Tennessee. However, they executed on big plays and were much more disciplined. They played a very similar game (minus some big plays) to the Texas A&M game: lots of penalties and stalled drives in the first half, much more disciplined and efficient in the second half. We’re definitely a long ways from the Bowling Green game.

    Unfortunately, I think they lose to LSU and one of USC/UGA. As long as we don’t lose any games we shouldn’t, I would take an 11-2 season with a win in a big bowl. After the debacle of last year, I think that’s ambitious enough.

  23. I have mixed emotions about the USC loss. Anyone who plays USC is now my second favorite team, but this will probably keep them from playing Alabama in the National Championship game (I know, the season is a long way from over and Bamacan definitely be beaten). I sure would love to see Bama beat USC 52-0. Actually, I would love to see anyone beat USC 52-0.

  24. I think I’d get a higher degree of schadenfreude watching USC lose 3-4 games than getting trounced by an SEC team in the Nat’l Championship game. Matt Barkley is Matt Leinart, version 2.0, or Mark Sanchez v2.0 at the very most. I don’t know why he’s touted as the heir to the recent Ryan/Stafford/Bradford/Newton/Luck/Griffin run of rookie quarterbacks. Stealing Silas Redd from PSU is a very Lane-Kiffin type move, in my opinion. Overrated team with an idiot coach.

    Given how this season is playing out for a lot of non-SEC ranked teams, we very well may have another SEC vs. SEC Nat’l championship game. Nobody’s coming out of the Big 10. Oregon has a chance to go undefeated, but they’ll likely lose one of the @USC, @Cal, vs Stanford, or @Oregon State games. That’s a really tough way to end the season. Florida State may be liable to drop one of the Clemson, @VT, or Florida games. Notre Dame’s not going to win out, and the Big East is not going to send anyone to Pasadena. The winner of the TCU-Oklahoma finale may be playing for the right to get demolished in January.

  25. Golly, this series might be exciting if the Braves didn’t allow themselves to be swept by the under-.500 Brewers right before it.

  26. I’m still seeing a Braves team playing at a really low level and getting incredibly lucky. The pitching is barely holding the team together.

  27. It’s pretty amusing seeing TC fanboys arguing that the blown call at first base didn’t cost the Nats that game. Don’t get me wrong: I’ll take it, but it never ceases to amuse me how baseball fans convince themselves that their team gets hurt by bad umpiring and that it’s always the other team who benefits.

    I also think folks here are too hard on the Braves. They’re not collapsing. They’re going to win around 93-96 games, in fact. And my guess is that everyone here would have taken that at the start of the season.

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