Brewers 4, Braves 3, Joel’s Knee 0

We didn’€™t exactly have the A-squad last night. With Julio Teheran, John Gant, and Williams Perez on the DL, and Matt Wisler sent to AAA, the Braves keep running out Joel De La Cruz. He actually hasn’t been terrible, and aside from one big mistake, he wasn’€™t completely terrible last night. He was getting hit hard throughout the night, but had been able to stay out of it, until he served up one of the hardest hit balls in Miller Park history to Chris Carter. Did I mention he was getting hit hard? He had to leave the game after taking a comebacker off the knee during the last out of the fourth.

That meant, with Mauricio Cabrera, Jim Johnson, and Ian Krol (or, as I like to call them, “Cajohnkrol”) having been over-worked during our 4-game winning streak, they threw out Chaz Roe, Jose Ramirez, and Eric O’Flaherty. Two waiver claims and a Rule-5 pick combined for 5 scoreless innings, proving the point that the Braves seem to be able to turn anyone into an effective reliever these days.

Erick Aybar saw his 14-game hitting streak end, but Ender Inciarte had two hits, and Freddie Freeman had two big home runs. No one else had more than one hit, and Gordon Beckham is quickly turning into a pumpkin. Beckham’s hit .160/.233/.272 since the beginning of July, and he probably needs to start seeing the back of the bench.

More journeymen today in the afternoon game as Roberto Hernandez gets the ball. If we could get some of these starters back, that’€™d be real great.

52 thoughts on “Brewers 4, Braves 3, Joel’s Knee 0”

  1. Another plus I recall of having a crap team. If you don’t like the roster, wait two days and it will change.

    Won’t be better, just different.

    Seriously though: good bullpen.

  2. Four guys that have been sent down to AAA or had lengthy “DL” stints have come back to either increase their OPS by 150+ points or lower their ERA by over 2 runs a game: Erick Aybar, Jace Peterson, Jim Johnson, and Eric O’Flaherty. Hopefully Wisler and Blair will see the same fate.

  3. @1, lulz

    @2, I have pondered that same thing. What gives? And yet, we have criticized the coaching at AAA because guys who have gone from AA to AAA have had the opposite response.

    Otherwise, Chaz Roe was a first round pick out of HS in 2005. He was a total failure as a starter in the minors, so he was moved to the bullpen in 2012, and he steadily dominated there at AAA. He has been a marginal reliever in his major league career, not too bad, never too good, though his K-rates have been solid, averaging over 9K/9ip. Making it as a RH reliever in the bigs is a tough go, so his getting kicked around doesn’t mean he can’t stick with us.

  4. Maybe Chaz Roe can get us another top 10 prospect, but we’re probably getting greedy at this point.

    I guess this is the long game vs. trying to package a bunch of cumulative crap to get an above average position player. You couldn’t trade Dario Alvarez, Lucas Harrell, Chevanka, Jace Peterson, and Rob Whalen to get a third baseman or right fielder, but you could trade Travis Demeritte, Anfernee Seymour, Jace Peterson and Rob Whalen for that same third baseman or right fielder because there’s more upside in the second deal.

  5. @5, Right. Slow, incremental increase of talent through trading. It’s a smart way to do things if you can pull it off, but it takes time.

  6. @25 previous thread. A Sept 1st roster expansion callup does not start one’s service clock does it?

  7. Counts toward service time, but is not an option year. Which is why teams that are out of it wait a week to call guys up and then only 4-5

  8. I hate to admit this, but Aybad’s growing on me. He seems to be a personable man. He’s not Andrelton, but who is?

    Keep this guy in the park, Fausto.

    Didn’t our guy used to be a ground ball pitcher?

  9. 7 & 9—It counts toward service time, but not toward service time for purposes of determining rookie eligibility. And the only guys who can be called up are guys on the 40-man roster, meaning they’re typically already using an option year.

    But maybe you could add them to the 25-man at the same time you add them to the 40-man, not send them down for the rest of the season, and not have it count as an option year?

  10. Aybar’s fine when he doesn’t suck. I just wish he had stopped sucking early enough to be flipped for something.

  11. I’m surprised we didn’t bring Ryan Weber up to do some mop-up. It could have been Kelly, but he’s injured, and I don’t think we have a lot of multi-inning options right now. Jose Ramirez, a one-inning guy for his entire career, pitched two innings yesterday, and we keep adding guys off the waiver wire. Coppy might be being a little too cute sometimes.

  12. Tyler Flowers was behind the dish today in the GCL. Good to hear he’s getting back in action.

  13. Was anyone expecting Fausto Roberto Carmona Hernandez to pitch a one hit shut out today? I can’t say that I was. It looks like both him and De La Cruz are making it easy to replace them when Teheran and Wisler return.

  14. Prince Fielder is retiring. I can’t get over how his and Cecil’s stats are almost identical. They both had 319 homers and hit 50 or more in a season among others.

  15. I’m relieved they lost a couple in a row here. I was starting to worry they’d get on a serious roll and jeopardize their shot at that first-pick slot money.

  16. From MLBTR:

    “The Braves also were one of the teams to ask the Diamondbacks about struggling righty Shelby Miller, who famously changed hands between those teams before the season. That deal seemed favorable to the Braves at the time, and looks even better for them now. Arizona was prepared to move Miller, Heyman notes, but never was offered anything close to what was deemed needed to make a deal.”

    That last part…ice cold. Wonder what Coppy put on the table? Daniel Castro and a 10th round pick?

  17. That Stu and his slot money. Rascal.

    If we’re fortunate to have a healthy starting rotation of guys 25 and under, I don’t think we’ll be getting the #1 pick. No tears here.

  18. Braves had four really nice starts tonight:

    • Sean Newcomb, Mississippi: 6 IP, 2 H, 3 BB, 8 K, 0 R
    • Mike Soroka, Rome: 7.1 IP, 6 H, 2 BB, 4 K, 3 R
    • Cameron Stanton, Danville: 5.2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 K, 0 R
    • Alan Rangel, GCL: 5 IP, 4 H, 0 BB, 6 K, 0 R

    Haven’t heard much about Rangel but he’s both putting up a decent year.

    Also, Austin Riley had one of his big boy games going 3 for 4, including a double, a homer and a walk.

  19. Cards/Cubs tonight at Wrigley..Cubs walk off walk in the 11th…good game, watched within the confines of the Rio commercials but…couldn’t take my eyes off the train wreck that is Jason Heyward…1 for 5 and that a swinging bunt, nothing i saw that went out of the infield. .226/.308/.316 …5 homers, 32 RBI’s

    And it’s not the numbers that appall the most. Nothing was hit hard, cleanly. The familiar smothered roll overs to second much in evidence still. It’s in his head, in a very big way. You have to feel for him. 184M, dWAR, Wow. Where is this going to end? He remains Gulliver in Liliput, a Giant of a man tethered apparently by his own psyche.There is still love, so it goes on hurting.

  20. Worth noting from Twitter

    How about @DanvilleBraves RHP Jacob Webb:

    1.00 ERA – 9 IP, 4H, 4BB, 25K (!!!)
    Only 2 outs he’s recorded have not been strikeouts. #Braves

  21. I’ve been looking forward to Hursh. Good for him.

    Newcomb’ pitched well in 4 of his last 5 starts, but like Adam said, he’s gotta get shut down soon, right?

  22. Why the innings limit on Newcomb? Is it something specific to him, or is it a general innings placement on minor leaguers? I may have missed something on either count. FYI: Newcomb is up to 118 innings.

  23. Peanut

    Jason Hursh and Akeel Morris will join the Braves tonight. Roberto Hernandez DFA’d and Brandon Cunniff optioned.

  24. @30, “He remains Gulliver in Liliput, a Giant of a man tethered apparently by his own psyche.”

    Dear blazon, you are a treasure. The end.

  25. Webb is definitely on a roll. Looks like he struck out 12 in a row over 4 separate appearances. He had no stats in 2015, but was pretty good (2.14 ERA) in rookie ball in 2014. If he had Tommy John surgery and this is the result, I would like to see his doctor about my shoulder.

  26. Sean Newcomb’s last 5 starts: 29 2/3 IP, 17 H, 13 BB, 34 K (6 ER).

    He started out the year pretty rough, so even with the recent hot streak his full-season line isn’t particularly pretty: 4.04 ERA, 1.36 WHIP. Newcomb clearly has good/great stuff – minor league career 312 K over 268 2/3 IP – but it’s likely he’ll struggle to win consistently or go deep in ballgames at the MLB level until he gets his walk rate down a bit.

    I hadn’t heard Newcomb was subject to any particular innings limit this year – he threw 136 innings last year so it seems like it’d be safe to let him throw a bit more this year, up to 170 – 180 IP I’d say.

    Assuming Newcomb ends the year pitching well, seems like the best plan would be to assign him to AAA to start 2017 and let him practice efficient pitching against the polished minor league vets (and former/fringe MLBers) that populate AAA.

  27. Going tonight with my daughter. For any readers in DC, AAR and I have talked about a Braves Journal night next time the Braves are in town (Sept 5-7 I believe). Who knows? We might get to see Dansby. I’ll send out an invite when we get closer to that.

  28. Should be interesting. Braves have traditionally killed Strasburg (Freddy’s OPS is 1.2 or something) but this is a new Strasburg this year.

  29. Well, that’s a wrap. All three guys KJ has been traded for have reached the bigs. If Gant gets healthy, they might all be there at the same time. Let’s do it again next year!

  30. @30, Yeah you have to wonder what on earth is going on–it’s incredible for someone with Heyward’s track record to drop off a cliff at age 26.

    August Fagerstrom points out here ( that he has basically lost his ability to hit balls low in the zone this year–which is where he usually had so much success. As to why? I guess the testy Lilliputians of the psyche are as good a guess as any.

  31. If you’ve resigned to the fact that the Braves are terrible, but you’re confident the Braves are getting better, then this is a really exciting time. As of today, 9 of our 12 pitchers are 26 or younger, and that’s without Teheran, Wisler, Blair, Vizzy, and Simmons.

    I’m not sure if this tweet is accurate, but it is concerning:

    The obvious ones to put on the 40-man are Fried, Sims, and Ruiz (with Hursh added today). But what about Bird and Thurman, under-performing “prospects”, and a guy like Stephen Janas, who doesn’t have the prospect status but has been pitching really well in AAA? The Braves might have so many young, unproven, fringy prospects not on the 40-man that they may not want to put on the 40-man but certainly wouldn’t want to lose to Rule-5. A big part of this rebuild has been predicated on depth, but if too much of that depth at any one time can be unprotected, then the Braves may have to trade some of these guys.

  32. Bird and Thurman have been so bad this year that I don’t think there’s much risk in leaving them unprotected. What team thinks those guys could help them out of the bullpen next year?

    But I think you’re right that the issue gets addressed by trading a few of these guys in bulk.

  33. Yep–Bird and Thurman are horrible. I don’t care if someone picks Bird. I’d dare them to roster him for a full season.

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