In yet another homecoming for yet another former Brave, the Braves had to endure the ignominy of losing to Jason Marquis, who is now 36 and has a lifetime record of 124-115, in case you weren’t feeling old already. Oh, and Brayan Pena had an RBI.
Eric Stults finally snapped the starting pitching streak by going 7 innings, but he also gave up 11 hits and six earned runs. Fredi probably thought the bullpen needed a break. But I think Donnie Veal needs a vacation. He came in in the ninth inning with his trusty gasoline can, walked the leadoff man, and then promptly gave up a two-run homer. Veal has now made two appearances with the Braves and has given up a walk and a home run in each. I don’t think we need to see a third appearance from him. The recently DFA’ed Anthony Varvaro is better; hell, Juan Jaime is probably better.
The Braves scored four runs, entirely thanks to the bottom of the order â€”Â the 1-4 hitters all went ohfer. Cameron Maybin, who is a much better baseball player than Eric Young Jr., had an RBI single and a two-run homer, and Andrelton Simmons added an RBI double.
The offense is averaging 4.25 runs per game, and it tells you all that you need to know about this team that the best thing about this team is the offense.
Teheran better bing his A-Game today.
Not a lot of happy stuff to talk about with the Braves right now… so I suggest you distract yourself by reviewing this photo of Evan Gattis rocking a great vegetable-pun-themed shirt. We miss you, Oso Blanco!
Get a hit today, Braves.
Two hits are better than one. More please.
I like our new third baseman. Woo, KJ!
Same here, coop, I even like him better the second time around.
Kelly is easily one of the streakiest players I have ever seen in my life. He appears to be on one of his good streaks.
Neck’s cooled down with the bat. Also the glove?
Good Lord. That 2-2 pitch was a strike. What is wrong with this ump?
Man, really poor balls and strikes calling.
I think it’s time to automate the pitch-calling process, for balls and strikes I mean.
Simba and Freddie sometimes disappoint rabid fans.
They gave us four outs and we still couldn’t score.
Freddie nearly got ahold of that, though.
Did you not get my email this am AAR? No big deal, but if I’m sending to wrong place or there’s a better process Lmk.
I like the way Gomes runs out home runs. The more I see of him, the more I like Johnny Gomes.
Spike, I’m afraid I didn’t get it.
UPDATE: I just sent you an email. We’ll figure this out. Sorry about that.
In other news, “Braves 2nd best hitter” Carlos Quentin announced his retirement after putting up a .176/.263/.235 line in AAA-Tacoma.
Looks like Fredi was right about Teheran needing to throw more fastballs.
“Fredi” and “right” are two words that don’t often appear in the same sentence on Braves Journal.
It would make me feel better for the pen to start getting ready, just in case.
Teheran is over 100 pitches.
I really like Cody.
Let Cody throw another inning, Fredi.
I wouldn’t mind seeing Cody try out starting.
Using Cody Martin in a 5-0 game seems like an unnecessary luxury.
We definitely have the best middle infield defense in the league, and it isn’t all Simmons making that the case.
Fredi breaking out his pimp hand on the bullpen.
Oh this was a fun game to watch.
That didn’t go as I expected. Great game.
Fun stat of the day: Braves batters have struck out the least in the NL with 157 before today’s game (only 2 SOs).
Gattis with a HR in his third consecutive game. Good for him.
Been a while since we had a game go that well on both sides of the ball.
Very odd how punchless Jace has been thus far. He only has 1 XBH (triple) for the year. His walk rate is good and his K rate will likely stabilize around 15%. If he can find his gap power again, we could be looking at a .750 OPS 2nd baseman. Only time will tell.
I think this is probably a .500 team, but they are 10x more fun to watch than last year’s team. If Teheran and Wood start pitching well consistently and we at least get a .500 win percentage from our 4th and 5th starters I think this will be a fun year. My biggest concern is our bullpen.
It’s hard to find scout-types who think Jace Peterson has any in-game power to speak of. His offensive appeal lies in having a decent approach at the plate and just getting the most out of what little he has.
In the minor leagues he really didn’t have that much gap power. His minor league SLG of .411 and isolated power of .124 are a little misleading — they’re partly powered by his knack for hitting triples, particularly the 13 that he legged out in 2013. He had 33 triples in 1732 plate appearances in the minors, compared to just 14 homers and 73 doubles. That’s basically three full seasons of PAs, in which he averaged about 11 triples, about 5 homers, and about 24 doubles every year.
He doesn’t have blazing speed, so I doubt he’ll get 10 triples a year in the big leagues. If you took those triples and turned them into doubles, his slugging percentage would fall 23 points, and his ISO would be just .101: basically a singles hitter who hits 7-10 homers a year. Of course, if he can hit .280 like he did in the minors, that will be more than enough.
Peterson is about a year younger than Andrelton Simmons, so he still has time to grow. He probably has enough power to keep his bat from being sent back to the majors. But barring significant improvement, I’m not sure that he has much more than that.
I can’t believe it took till May for a Braves’ starter to pitch a whole seven innings in one game.
Jace is only 24. Is it possible he could develop more physical strength at 24?
While not Ichiro, Peterson is pretty quick out of the box. Perhaps he can just make those 270 feet faster than others.
AJ will regress, but I don’t really see anyone playing over their heads right now, and one could argue we’ll see more production out of middle relief (eventually we’ll get the right collection of stiffs), center field, and the 4th & 5th spots of the rotation. If we can get one or two of those things going (Folty in the 5th spot?), then I could see us being .500.
Watching players make even weak contact, I would imagine, is more fun than strikeouts. Of course, home runs are very exciting, but legged-out base hits, stolen bases, extra bases attempted, and plays at the plate are naturally going to provide more action plays than the occasional home run. It’s debatable what impact that has on the quality of the team, but it at least creates a slightly more entertaining product on television. And if we’re going to suck, why not get a little enjoyment out of it?
Colin Cowherd was talking about that a few weeks ago. He contended that home runs and strike outs are less exciting than those action plays I mentioned. I personally like the action plays, but I can see the argument for the other side.