Braves 4 Pirates YAWWWWN

Since this was essentially just a Grapefruit League game. I have decided to take a different direction with the recap.

This moment has been building for the last few months, and we didn’t know how we would handle it. We have had a long journey together, that has finally reached the end. Knowing Ben Sheets just toed the mound for his last game… Sorry, I couldn’t resist.

In the late spring of 1990 the Atlanta Braves had a difficult choice to make. They controlled the number one overall pick in the draft. They were debating on selecting a young promising high school pitcher from Texas or going with a Florida high school switch hitting shortstop.

While they were trying to decide, the pitching prospect let his desires be known. He did not want to play for the Braves and would not sign. I guess being the number one pick wasn’t good enough for him. He wanted to win, and if he had to, he would enroll at the University of Texas that fall.

As many of us remember, the Atlanta Braves were one of the worst professional sports franchises in the mid to late 1980’s. They had a crazy gazillionaire owner who was arguing with free agents in the press and trying to be the actual team manager. Their best player was starting to fade. They had to play in a stadium that smelled like urine and had a field that resembled an Iraqi highway.

The Braves ended up passing on Todd Van Poppel, who was selected by the Oakland A’s with the 14th pick of the 1990 draft. Ultimately, he played for seven different major league teams, retiring in 2005 with a career ERA of 5.58. Never playing in a World Series. Never sniffing a Cy Young award. Never winning more than seven games in a season.

Thankfully, none of those wins came with the Braves.

In Larry Wayne “Chipper” Jones’s first full season in the organization, the Braves started their ascent to becoming one of the most successful sports franchises over the last twenty years. In that time period, they won 14 consecutive division titles, five National League pennants, two Wild Card births and the 1995 World Series.

Chipper just wrapped up his 19th and final season. No number one pick has ever produced more for the team that selected them. I could go down all of the numbers, but you all already know them. The 1999 MVP is a sure fire first ballot Hall-of-Famer and a top five (if not top three) third baseman of all time. No word on if Van Poppel will be selling Cokes at 2017 2018 induction ceremony.

Today may have been the last regular season game for Chipper, but it isn’t over yet. There is still at least one more game. But the way Chipper has played this season, and his flair for the dramatic, I have a feeling that Braves are more than just “one and done.”

Anything Chipper does at this point is just gravy. He is a once in a generation player that has done everything possible to help the Braves win. He played left field for a while, because he thought it would help the club. He has played through injuries. He even restructured his contract to sign/ keep players.

Thanks Chipper. Now put the team on your shoulders one last time and see how far you can take us. Todd Van Poppel should have your gutters cleaned by Halloween.

SEC Picks (home teams to the right)
Arkansas 17 Auburn 18
LSU 24 Florida 17
Georgia 21 South Carolina 17
Texas A&M 24 Ole Miss 10
Vanderbilt 17 Missouri 21
Mississippi State 28 Kentucky 3

63 thoughts on “Braves 4 Pirates YAWWWWN”

  1. So Craig will have to settle for striking out exactly half the batters he faced this year (116 of 232), an ERA over 1 (1.0053, to four digits), and a measly 43 saves. I guess he’ll learn to live with it.

  2. Quick typo correction – In Larry Wayne “Chipper” Jones’s first full season in the organization, the Braves started their ascent , not assent.

  3. @3

    Yes. A starter has to go five. It’s pretty arbitrary when a reliever comes in and pitches just the second inning and wins when the starter can’t, but that’s the rule.

  4. #5 – Thats what I thought. Official scorer could give it to anyone other than the starter correct?

  5. In addition, I’m really not sure why Teheran didn’t get the win. As everyone pretty much pitched equally effectively, and he went two innings while everyone else went one, I would find it difficult to argue that he didn’t have the largest role in the team winning the game of all the pitchers, which is supposed to be what they’re looking at when the starter can’t win. I’m sure the official scorer had a lunch date to get to or something.

  6. @7

    So yes, in answer to your question. He could’ve given it to anyone but the starter, was supposed to give it to the reliever that had the most to do with us winning the game, and should’ve given it to Teheran.

  7. I think the scoring rule says they can give it to the person most directly responsible for the win, but it is always given to the first pitcher possible where your team has the lead and keeps it.

  8. Yeah, but that’s kind of stupid and isn’t what the rule tells them to do at all. Anything to keep from having to think, I suppose.

  9. Smitty’s occasional malapropism — particularly “Tehran” — is part of the fabric of this blog.

    So, whose job is it to lock Durbin in a clubhouse locker before the game starts?

  10. If you’re watching As/Rangers, you can see why it’s unwise to treat a high-stakes game like it’s a normal one, with your starter facing a lineup more than once.

  11. We need to get Hinske into an emergency conditioning program. Is Extended Spring Training still open? Let’s send him down there on a flight tonight and get some of that weight off. He might be ready in time for the WS.

  12. He booted an easy fly ball off the bat of Cespedes. The announcers believe the wind took it away from him at the very end, and maybe it had some impact, but he also took a weird route and looked a little like he jogged too much initially and had to sprint at the end to get in place (lends credibility to the wind theory, actually).

  13. 680 the Fan reporting that the Braves have been given the early game on Friday, to start at 5:07.

  14. If you’re watching As/Rangers, you can see why it’s unwise to treat a high-stakes game like it’s a normal one, with your starter facing a lineup more than once.

    I totally agree. Today’s game actually looked like a pretty good model, in fact, as I actually have more confidence in the bullpen, even the middle relievers, than I do in almost any starter seeing a lineup a second or third time through.

    Then again, Medlen is not just any starter (lately).

  15. So the AL play in game will be in primetime regardless. My god I hope there is a NYY/BAL regular season tie.

  16. Christ, I honestly hate that the Braves are getting the early start. It means I’m going to have to DVR it and then shut off my phone and go on media blackout until later in the night.

  17. This is, I’m somewhat ashamed to say, the first Orioles game I’ve seen this season. But I am of course constantly ashamed of how much worse Chip is than anybody Exhibit 486, Gary Thorne.

  18. One more correction: Chipper will be eligible to be inducted into the HOF in 2018, not 2017.

  19. I suspect the answer is time zones. If the game is in Texas, they put the later game in the later time zone. And the ability to schedule that now means hat if it’s in Baltimore it was a wash.

  20. 42- In other surprising news, the sun will rise in the east tomorrow.

    45- It’s going to be in Baltimore now that they’ve lost.

  21. Well, I guess it’s time to concede the championship in the Braves Journal Fantasy League to JoeyT.

  22. What is best in life?

    “To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women.”

    Conan the Outfielder

    Go Braves!

  23. Great recap Smitty. Let’s kick the Cards’ a$$, beat the sh:t out of the Natspos, destroy either the Reds or the Giants, and win the last game of this year as 4 said. It’s very easy.

    Chipper won the championship when he was a rookie, let’s the man win another one in his last season.

  24. @53


    If we win this gmae tomorrow, this whole play in game may pay off. Who would you rather play right now? the Natspos or the Reds?

  25. Natspos. I hate that ballpark in Cinci. Btw, I am glad we didn’t get Dempster. Look at what he has done for the Rangers.

  26. I kept going back and forth between Reds and Nationals as the preferred DS opponent.

    Nats have been scuffling, but could throw lefties Gio and Detwiler out in 3 of 5 games.

    Reds have no lefty starters, but their line-up has a big advantage in that joke ballpark.

    I guess I settled on preferring playing Washington. But what do the gods do when they want to punish us? They answer our prayers.

  27. RHP Kris Medlen, named the National League Pitcher of the Month for the second consecutive month, is the first Braves pitcher to win the honor in consecutive months since…say it with me…Greg Maddux did it in June and July, 2001.

  28. I’m not sure why this is an issue. If the Braves win, they play the Nationals. That’s already been determined since the Nats will be the no. 1 seed.

  29. Not an issue. Just a way to fill my head with “what ifs” during the agonizing hours leading up to this play-in game. The anticipation is killing me. It’s like waiting for christmas morning as a six-year-old if christmas fell on the first day of shark week.

  30. @58

    Under the old system, we would be playing the Reds as the Wild Card, now we have a shot that the Nats. That might be in our favor.

  31. So, based on what I am reading about MLB’s new 8-year extension with Fox and TBS, it looks like subscribers to still won’t be able to watch broadcast feeds for postseason games. Is new, and if not, anyone know exactly what to expect with “live alternative video feeds”? I am imagining a stationary cam in the parking lot.

  32. I got either last year or the year before, and it was a little weird but I started to not notice the lack of cameras being switched for me. If I recall correctly, you can choose to watch one, two, or four feeds at a time, and you get to pick. I kept the shot of the Braves dugout up and one of the whole field from behind home plate, and one of the traditional pitcher/batter shot from CF, and I switched the fourth one around. I think there was eight (?) different shots you could choose from.

    It’s supposed to be complimentary to the TBS and FOX broadcasts to let you see what they’re not showing, but I made it work fine on its own since I don’t have cable and I wanted to watch the postseason. It has a similar feel to what a director of a broadcast sees, so maybe I didn’t mind it as much because it took my back to my days as a director.

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