Mets 3 Braves 2

ESPN Box Score

This game was not the total embarrassment that Game 1 was, but it all looks the same on the overall record so that is little comfort. After starting out 5-0, the Braves have gone 3-6 and have rudely brought us all back to reality.

Eric Stults allowed leadoff triple in the first, but he managed to get out of it somehow without allowing that runner to get home. In the 2nd inning, AJ Pierzynski turned a triple into a double, and Andrelton Simmons singled him home for the game’s first run. AJ finished 3-for-3 with a walk in his first game at Citi Field. The rest of the offense, though, did not share his enthusiasm about the evening.

The Mets tied it up in essentially the same manner—an extra base hit and single—in the bottom of the inning, which made Joe Simpson begin extolling the Mets brand of smallball and how that has helped them win nine in a row coming into tonight. The Braves decided to kick the ball around a bit that inning and give the Mets a chance to score again, but the Mets and their amazin’ smallball ways were not able to take advantage of it.

In the 5th, Eric Young Jr. hit a one-out triple, and Alberto Callaspo gave the Braves their second lead of the game with a sac fly. By that point, Stults had retired 11 in a row and was dealing. He ended up pitching six strong innings, allowing 1 run on 4 hits.

In the top of the 7th, Jace Peterson ripped the ball to deep left center field to lead off the inning and it looked liked the Braves would have an excellent opportunity to build on their lead. Juan Lagares, however, had other ideas, and he absolutely robbed Peterson to put an end to that notion. Cody Martin relieved Stults in the bottom of the 7th, but he gave up a solo homer to Wilmer Flores to let the Mets tie the game.

In the 8th, Lucas Duda put the Mets ahead with an RBI single off Jim Johnson, and Simpson once again began drooling over the Mets using smallball to be successful. Maybe the Braves need to take notes. Johnson issued 3 walks and 2 hits in his 2/3 of an inning, and Brandon Cunniff had to relieve him to get the Braves out of the inning. Like the Braves, Johnson has hit a wall in a hurry.

The Braves went meekly in the top of the 9th, and now they have to win Thursday’s afternoon getaway game to avoid being swept. Fortunately, the Braves have Julio Teheran toeing the rubber against Bartolo Colon, so the Mets may want to hold off breaking out the brooms just yet.

140 thoughts on “Mets 3 Braves 2”

  1. The Mets don’t look very good to me. They got both games handed to them with walks and second basemen who can’t make plays that middle school baseball players could.

    They’ll have to play real teams eventually.

  2. Was at Citi Field tonight & I’ve been to warehouse raves with bigger attendance, but the weather was crap & the Rangers had a playoff game tonight, so… a good night to stay home for a lotta folks.

    As usual, a good amount of Braves fans in Flushing. Lots of SEC caps in the house. I was sitting behind home-plate & it was battle of the slop-slingers. Always amusing when you’re rooting for the guy who junkballs his way to a 2-2 count, then sneaks an up-and-in “heater” past somebody. You look at the board & it reads: Fastball 88 MPH.

    The guy has no stuff, but the guts of a burglar. Gotta give him that. Hate to lose a game when Stults is actually pretty good. Salvage time, Julio — go get ’em tomorrow.

    You’ve seen them pitch, right? So far Harvey, deGrom, Colon & Niese have been pretty terrific.

    They’re 2nd in the NL in pitching & 2nd in the NL in runs scored, despite their un-scary lineup. It’s only 15 games, but that’s a recipe for success.

  3. If we won’t be competing this season, I’d sign up for the Mets staking out an early lead, only to watch the Nats overtake them by July and then to collapse embarrassingly down the stretch.

  4. I am guessing this game will represent the season in a nutshell. Good pitching, not enough hitting. Well at least Stults gave the team a chance to win. The catch Lagares made was just sick. Peterson hit the crap out of that ball.

  5. I had to live in Tallahassee for work (I know…) a few years ago, and I will say, some of the abandoned/renovated warehouse rave spots in that town seemed like they could accommodate quite a few people.

  6. 5—Enthusiastically seconded!

    As tough as this season is going to be, I must admit, it’s nice to be back in a place where the Mets can actually be hate-able for me.

  7. Jace stung the ball every time he came to the plate and had nothing to show for it. It’s encouraging to see him making good contact, but it sucks for him that he doesn’t get the immediate feedback of reaching safely. A lot of guys will start changing their approach when “they ain’t droppin'”. It seems like we have a guy like this every April–in the past it’s been Heyward.

  8. Jace needs ABs. He’ll be fine. Bethancourt, I just don’t ever see him becoming worthy of being a team’s main catcher.

  9. @15
    His ERA is sexy, but he’s been very lucky with a low K-rate and a high BB-rate. His FIP and ERA are 2 runs different.

  10. @14-From what I’ve seen of Bethancourt this year his defense alone makes him a decent enough starting catcher so long as his team can bat him 8th. The problem with the Braves is that 3/4 of the lineup are #8 hitters and his backup is the second-best hitter on the team.

  11. Keep a sharp lookout for Jeff Pearlman. He sort of prowls that line looking for boobs.

    Edit: “Boobs” like “suckers,” not like anatomy. In case that confused anybody.

  12. Bethancourt has a .388 OPS on the year. No amount of defense short of Andrelton can make that gap up. Obviously, he’ll improve from that position, but anything sub-.650 is unacceptable.

  13. I think Bethancourt might be like Jace Peterson. He is making contact and the hits will fall eventually, if my eyes and memory aren’t tricking me. I don’t think he will be that great, but I think his numbers will improve and he will be serviceable.

  14. If the Braves were “trying to win” this year then Bethancourt and AJ would swap playing time roles. The playing-time allocation at catcher is actually a decent litmus test for how the front-office views this season.

  15. That full-count walk just now was a full-count strikeout. And it’s put the nail in the proverbial coffin before this game was good and started.

    And Heyward would have caught that.

  16. I’m not positive Heyward would have caught it, but there’s no way he lets it roll to the wall

  17. @34 Actually, it’s only been two days since Brady Feigl had Tommy John, and he quite nearly made the OD roster. But, even with that, you’re right, we’re due for a pitching injury. We’re always due for a pitching injury.

    Julio’s lack of velocity is definitely concerning. I thought Gameday was lying to me when it said “Fastball, 88mph.”

  18. Andrelton’s swinging well. Let’s see how Julio throws this inning before consigning him to the DL, please.

  19. This is a drum I beat on frequently, but if Sutton and Powell aren’t the best radio team in the country, I’d like to know who’s better.

  20. @39 Yeah, it was his 4-seamer that Gameday was showing 87-88. But they’re pretty bad about putting on there the pitch that was actually thrown, so who knows.

  21. I’m in the minority I’m fairly sure, but I’m not a Powell guy. I’d rather he leave the cornball aphorisms to Sutton than try to match him.

  22. I know what you mean, but I appreciate the effort he makes to put over Sutton. With a less accommodating partner, Sutton could be insufferable. (I don’t mind Sutton overall, but it’s not hard to find him a little much.) If you gave Powell a less cornball partner, I think he’d shine even brighter.

  23. This is what happens sometimes when you have a DH playing 2B. Hey, tie game.

    I always feel like Powell is indulging Sutton when they start getting hokey, but, yeah, kinda cringe-worthy. Otherwise, Powell describes the game much better than Sutton.

    The Mets actually have a terrific radio crew. When Howie Rose is on the mic, it’s tough to beat. He’s one of the very best in the business. Gary Cohen was great when he was doing radio, but he does Mets TV now.

  24. Whoops! Spoke to soon. Don’t pack it in just yet! I love it when this team makes me look stupid.

  25. Whatever else happens this season, if Simmons keeps hitting like this, I’ll be extremely happy.

  26. Don Sutton is a truly godawful play-by-play announcer, and I really don’t know why they still let him do it (other than that it’s in his contract and they needed to do that to get him to come back from Washington, I’m sure).

    When Powell is doing play-by-play, I do like the broadcast overall, and actually think it’s really good when it’s a close game late and they get a little more serious and cut down on the Hee-Haw act.

  27. 54—Completely agree. Just to reiterate: Sutton is unbearably bad on PBP.

    55—Better than Medlen? I dunno…

  28. @40 I agree. I like Don and Jim. They seem like guys I would want to watch a game with.

    @54 It’s not his strong suit, but on radio you have to switch out some. Otherwise Jim would be toast by July.

    Don is the last real connection to the glory days of Braves Baseball of the 90s. I don’t count Joe Simpson, because he is a loon.

  29. Julio’s got 16 pickoffs before today, with a high of 8 in one season, and another season with 6. Medlen’s got 9 for his career, with a high of 3. And while it isn’t a perfect measure of opportunity, as you can technically pick a guy off with the bases loaded, Julio’s had only 617 career “Stolen base opportunities,” to Medlen’s 707.

    Medlen, in general, has prevented stolen bases better than Julio. The league average success rate is 73%, and they’ve been 77% successful against Julio, to only 68% successful against Medlen. I do not know if PO’s are considered “caught stealings,” for these purposes.

  30. #48
    Yanks radio is a unique disaster.

    Almost every game situation is a sponsored moment, so the broadcast team is forever shoehorning ad copy into the middle of an at-bat. If you’re in radio sales, this is your revenge on a world — it’s a broadcast only Herb Tarlek could love. But, if you’re a listener, it feels like the game is in a constant state of interruption.

    The main play-by-play guy often has trouble describing what’s happening right in front of him. With Yankees radio, you’re often saying to yourself, “OK, what just happened?”

    He also doesn’t give you the game situation and score as often as other announcers, so if you flip on the game, say, on your car radio, you’ll hear a million commercials and a zillion personal stories, but you won’t know the score, inning or game situation until the inning ends. It’s essentially an exercise of confusion for the listener.

    And then, you have the generally insufferable home-run calls, which over time I don’t really even notice anymore. It’s like going to Catholic school — after awhile, you just block certain things out.

  31. If the starters can’t go 6 or 7 innings consistently, 70 wins is the ceiling, and I don’t want to think about what the floor would be. This bullpen is 1985-90 bad. Even the Second Spitter on the Gravelly Road can’t make chicken salad from this lot.

  32. Well this is a disaster waiting to happen.

    EDIT: And now he has to throw a fastball.

    EDIT EDIT: Or a slider. Guts, if nothing else.

  33. Where does the ump want him to throw that breaking ball? Or is it just going to be a ball because it moves too much?

  34. @72 – And in those 12, 12 major league innings, he’s walked 9, 9 major league hitters.

  35. @59

    I would agree with that, but I’d also rather listen to Chip do play-by-play on the radio than Don. Maybe they should switch.

    Having a radio play-by-play guy who can’t successfully describe the game is not an issue unique to the Braves. There are plenty of others, normally because they’ve been doing it forever and nobody wants to tell them that it’s time to retire (Mike Shannon with the Cardinals is another one in addition to those already mentioned…just bad), but it’s an issue that always perplexes me.

    Also, I have Joe and Don on the same level of nostalgia. There is some for both (we’re not talking a Skip/Pete level here, though), and I’m glad they’re both still announcing games for the Braves and would be kind of sad if they were announcing for some other team. I don’t hold Joe saying that our fans were acting like idiots on a national broadcast when they caused a 15-minute delay of a playoff game against him. (Note: I also don’t hold the fans actions that day against them.)

    EDIT: @76 You simply have to be joking with pitch No. 2. Was the umpire even paying attention on that one?

  36. @77 – Well on number 2, he crossed-up Pierzynski and cause him to box it. But still. The pitch was clearly a strike.

  37. @jj
    316.2 innings pitched in the Minors with a 3.3 BB/9 rate and 10.7K/9. Those are stats that should be looked at in the Majors for more than 16 innings, especially coming from a LHP.

  38. @82, he does an incredibly poor job of actually describing what is happening to someone who cannot see the action: his words lack all directionality and specifics. He does a terrible job of describing the anticipatory actions of the batter and fielders, or their routes, or their efforts, or where the ball actually went. He isn’t very good at describing a play as it happens; typically, he’ll try to catch up once the play is over, but only with the most cursory of explanations.

    Most of the time, I watch the TV feed on while listening to the radio guys on audio overlay, so it isn’t nearly as crippling. But when I’m just listening to the audio, the difference between his level of description and Powell’s is notable.

  39. The biggest problem the Braves bullpen is having is there’s no real solution for the 8th inning, and therefore every other pitcher aside from Grilli is in a role of which they shouldn’t be in. Cody should be long man, Avilan and Ian LOOGYs, Cunniff 6-7th inning RHP, J.Johnson ground ball specialist, and someone not on the roster as the 8th inning guy. They’ll probably turn to Folty to fill that role if his walks get under control.

  40. @83 – Oh come on. You’re counting 4 years of independent ball to get that innings total. He’s 28 years old and he’s thrown only 16 innings at the TRIPLE A level. We aren’t exactly talking about a prospect here.

  41. @jj
    Fair enough. Just take his MILB numbers, scratch the Indy ball and his K rate goes up and his walk rate goes down over 185 innings.

    Point being, his walks have never been an issue and judging that based on 12 innings is a pointless exercise.

    Now Jaime? Different story.

  42. You pay your hard-earned money, you come to the ballpark, and, if you’re really lucky, you get to see Buddy friggin Carlyle retire the Braves in order.

  43. Buddy Carlyle and Sean Gilmartin being used as setup men against us feels like the Mets are laughing at us.

  44. Favorite story of the offseason: Avilan called O’Flaherty to get some advice on regaining his form. O’Flaherty told him to get in shape because he was too fat.

  45. I think it’s safe to say that AJ has probably lost a few strikes for our pitchers today.

  46. @84, I know I can’t trust your judgment on this when you describe any of Don Sutton’s announcing as “cursory.” But you might be right–Powell was on the mic again by the time I read that, so I didn’t get a chance to test it.

    But I like Sutton’s rhythm and his inventive locutions. He works hard to keep them fresh. And he frequently puts himself in the player’s shoes, sort of a play-acting take on game-calling that resonates with me.

  47. @97, what’s cursory is his descriptions. What isn’t cursory is his willingness to turn to one of his four favorite Whitey Herzog quotes, or a player he likes because they play the right way, or a folksy aphorism, or occasional real insight into pitching. He talks a lot, but relatively few of the words he says are actually descriptive of the play that is currently happening on the field.

    Our team is so terrible.

  48. I only consume baseball on BravesRadio, and Sutton is freaking invariably in mid-goddamn story for almost every pitch doing PBP. I can’t figure out why nobody will tell the guy that the game is in fact content more so than whatever tangent about the batter’s hometown he’s lingering over

  49. I think we may see some of these AAA starters at least in the pen within the next few weeks.

  50. Our team is so terrible.

    Accurate. We knew this was going to be a 90-loss team. But is there a way we could possibly win every day on the way to losing 90? That would make the season a lot more fun.

  51. @97

    Which is why he’s a good color commentator. When you’re the play-by-play guy for an audio only medium, though, fully describing the action on the field is first and everything else is second. I don’t care if you were managed by Walter Alston or you once went catfish noodling or if you have an admittedly worthwhile insight into pitching if I have no idea what happened on the play that just occurred other that that it was an out of some kind.

  52. Alex,

    1.) Who are you listening to? There is nothing cursory about Don Sutton’s descriptions. On the contrary they are careful and frequently interesting.

    2.) You’ll have to refresh my memory on the Herzog quotes. I don’t remember any, but that doesn’t mean they’re not there. Be nice if he peppered some Saul Bellow in, but I don’t think he will.

    3.) He likes the way everybody plays. He’s all compliments left and right. I guess that can be grating if you’re sort of a curmudgeon about baseball on the radio.

    4.) It’s much more damning that you use “folksy” in a pejorative way than that Sutton’s aphorisms are folksy. It’s a baseball game, do you really need the 21st century all the time?

    So maybe he’s late on the calls in real-time? I’ll listen next time he takes over. But I don’t think you’re listening with an open mind.

  53. “1.) Who are you listening to? There is nothing cursory about Don Sutton’s descriptions. On the contrary they are careful and frequently interesting.”

    Regarding his descriptions as an analyst, you are absolutely correct – and I find his folksiness endearing. As a play-by-play broadcaster, like Alex already said, Sutton often fails to adequately describe what exactly transpired on the field. How deep was the fly ball? Was it more to left center or the line? Was it well hit? Did Gomes have trouble with it? This is where his descriptions become cursory. I have noticed that he struggles with complex, quick-evolving plays, and if I’m not watching on the MLB.TV overlay, I’d have no idea what happened.

  54. @109

    It’s not about being interesting or the folksiness or the compliments. If he can’t fully describe the play as it’s happening, it’s not good enough. That’s the job of the radio play-by-play guy. He doesn’t do it. That’s the only thing that matters as a radio play-by-play guy. I don’t know what else to tell you.

    I can’t tell if you have or not, but if you haven’t, listen without video the next time. If you’re on MLB.TV, close your eyes or switch off your monitor or whatever.

  55. @109, all I can tell you is, if you haven’t heard Don Sutton quote Whitey Herzog, you haven’t been listening to Don Sutton.

    Whenever a pitcher starts throwing balls to a batter who’s trying to lay down a sacrifice bunt, Don will quote Herzog, who apparently liked to say, “He’s trying to give you an out — let him!”

    He just quoted Herzog the other night, but unfortunately (mercifully?) I can’t remember what it was. There are a few other Herzog quotes that he has in the hopper.

    His other most favorite quote is from Dmitri Young, and he’ll say it whenever a hitter has an absurdly good batting line: “Them’s high school numbers.” I swear, I must have heard him say that 10 times.

  56. As I said earlier. I like Sutton. He could be better at PBP. He is only calling like three innings, so I really don’t care.

    He is a great color analyst on radio and it is hard to be a better PBP guy than Jim Powell.

  57. Getting around to it after the fact is good enough for me, if that’s all he’s doing. Or maybe he just lets me imagine the game the way I like it…

    And I never listen to Powell/Sutton if I’m watching. I’m stuck with Chip on the old boob tube, or I’m out in the driveway with a beer guessing how much juice is left as the battery drains.

  58. Well, our first litmus test as to how bad we really are is coming up. I think we’re somewhere between mediocre and below average, but if we can’t take two-of-three from the Phillies this weekend, I may have to reconsider.

  59. You know the game didn’t go well when the game thread is 50 posts arguing about exactly how terrible our announcers all.

  60. @111 Scott Boras, is that you? (I am assuming Boas still represents Soriano. If he does not, then, I guess this won’t make any sense.)

  61. @126

    I was half-listening when he said that. I thought that’s what I’d probably heard, but I decided to ignore it because I didn’t want to deal with a world where he said that. Thanks for ruining my pleasant little fiction, John.

  62. Edward, are you trolling, or do you really disagree with the claim that Don Sutton does an exceedingly poor job of describing live-action baseball?

  63. No troll! He’s not as good as Powell, but he never says anything or omits anything that makes me wonder why he’s got the job. And then in between the action he makes me laugh. No one’s going to please everyone, but throwing out phrases like “godawful,” “exceedingly poor,” “incredibly poor,” and “unbearably bad” seems like a trumped up, sort of false version of how anyone could actually feel about Sutton’s announcing. Inoffensive? Uninspiring? Relatively imprecise? That’s as you like. Worse than that? Please.

    I mean, can y’all really not bear it? Do you listen and think, “Gosh, this is ruining the game”? Or is all that just a bunch of hot air?

  64. To return to the earlier comments on Teheran’s health. The Mets TV announcers thought his right knee was bothering him. (He tweeted it on a comeback line drive against the Mets). Said he wasn’t pushing off normally with his right leg.

  65. If past experience is any guide, Teheran’s knee is bothering him and the Braves medical staff will let him tough it out but the altered delivery will put strain on his arm and by July he’ll be visiting Andrews. Then Hart and Fredi and Johnny S will all shrug their shoulders and play dumb.

  66. 131—I think he’s outstanding as a color guy. I frequently change stations when he’s got the PBP call. Not trumping anything up; he’s truly awful at it and always has been. Insufficient score/inning updates, foggy (at best) real-time descriptions, and too many color commentator-type stories when he needs to be telling me what’s happening on the field.

    These are obviously not uncommon complaints about his work.

  67. For those tracking Fredi’s progression on the list of all-time Braves franchise managers, he passed 2 men in different categories.

    Last Sunday he passed Charley Grimm into the 10th spot at 4.073 seasons and counting. If he lasts another 85 games, he’ll pass Luman Harris for the 9th longest all-time and 2nd longest tenured Atlanta manager.

    Yesterday’s loss pushed Fredi past John Morrill into 10th on the all-time list with 297.
    John Morrill, who managed 1882-1888 went 335-296 as player manager.

    With 6 more victories, Fredi will tie Casey Stengel for 7th on the all-time list at 373 and 12 more ties him for 6th with Luman Harris. Stengel managed the Braves from 1938-1943 in his second managerial stint, having started in Brooklyn in 1932.

  68. They are apparently driving — LOL — to Philadelphia. Marimon & Thomas out? Someone(s) hurt? THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME.

  69. Yeah they’ve been called up. No word on who they are replacing. Could be Marimon and Gosselin if we are wanting to carry the extra arm.

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