The kid comes through and the operation becomes complete: Braves 5, Padres 4

We have discovered that the San Diego Padres are a very much not good team. Have we discovered that the Braves might be good? Probably not, but I think it is fair to say that they meet the Gus Czinski standard: “We don’t suck.”

Frequently, an endeavor meets a critical moment. A point when success can be complete, or struggle can continue. Eventually, we got to that point last night; but first, the preliminaries.
Jaime Garcia started off rough with 3 straight hits, then rocked along nicely until the 7th. Jose Ramirez took over and finished that one.

The hitter of the night overall was the big cheese, the one in charge. You know him as Freddie Freeman, but I will call him Major John Howard. Major Howard hit 2 home runs and 2 doubles. At end of 7, Braves 3, Padres 2.

Then Arodys Vizcaino had an uncharacteristic appearance. After 2 strikeouts, he kind of had a meltdown. So, we can compare him to Wally Parr. Clearing the fixed gun emplacement, but then pushing the electric trigger, causing a shell to fire, and hitting a nearby hospital. Arodys then gave up walk, home run (which put the Padres in front by a run), his own throwing error (on a tough play) and another walk. Luke Jackson came in and finished the inning up.

Major Howard came back to tie it in the bottom of the 8th. His second home run. Brian Snitker went with Jim Johnson in the “non save situation” and he was good.

So, in the bottom of the 9th, Adonis Garcia out, Kurt Suzuki single, Anthony Recker out. Not exactly the start of a rally. D’Arnaud had come in to run for Suzuki. then Emiliano Bonifacio hit a double (who knew?). The Padres walked the ever dangerous slugger Ender Inciarte to load the bases. Now, “the kid” faced his challenge (Dansby Swanson). In this moment, did the kid show the fortitude of Sergeant Charles “Wagger” Thornton. One of 5 P(rojector), I(nfantry), A(nti), T(ank) guns was operational after the gliders crash landed just after midnight on June 6, 1944. Thornton was assigned the task of taking that forward to prevent a tank counterattack. A PIAT was effective against a tank according to the “book” at 100 yards, but no fool who had ever used one would trust it at more than 50 yards. And, within a few minutes of Thornton hiding behind the low stone wall at the front of the Café Gondree, what probably were some old French model tanks (Thorton said it was a German Mark IV) turned toward the bridges. Thornton would get one shot. So, at 50 yards, he hit the lead tank. It exploded over and over for in excess of an hour. The remaining tanks pulled back to wait for reinforcements. Steven Ambrose has called this “the most important shot, in the most important engagement, in the most important battle, in the most important war, in the history of the world.”

Well, our Thornton didn’t do anything quite that important, but his walk off single was a big step forward for him and his club.

73 thoughts on “The kid comes through and the operation becomes complete: Braves 5, Padres 4”

  1. Gimmie a break, Ambrose. The war in Europe was already decided in the Allies’ favor by May 1944.

  2. Yes, hardly. There was no chance in May 1944, or anytime after July 1943, that Germany and its European allies could beat the Soviets. The Axis had completely lost the strategic initiative on the Eastern Front and suffered irreplaceable losses in manpower and equipment. The Western Allies’ invasion hastened the eventual outcome, but did not change it (except in the important sense that it set the post-war boundaries of U.S. and Soviet influence).

  3. There’s no evidence that the war was ever actually won by the Allies. The propaganda that we read in our United States history books includes lots of manufactured information and fake evidence. I don’t think these posts are appropriate. I will not be a party to this. Foot down!

  4. @7

    Well, the war WAS won by the Allies – which included the Soviet Union. It wasn’t won by the WESTERN Allies alone, not by any stretch of the imagination.

    Could the US/UK have beaten the Germans in 1944/45 if Stalin and Hitler had come to a cease-fire arrangement? (Putting aside the fact that there was no way in Hell that Hitler was going to negotiate with the Communists – he was determined that it was a war to the knife, and either Communism was going down or Nazism would bite the dust.) Well, I suppose they could have, but they would’ve had to drop the nukes on Berlin and Cologne instead of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and it would’ve required the German Army to stage a coup and remove Hitler. So – shaking the historical 8-Ball – I come up with ‘Unlikely.’ as the answer.

    Edit: @8 – Wins the internets!

  5. Kidding.

    Has anyone read anything about Mauricio Cabrera? Heard on the Chop Cast that, however leverage is defined, we’ve got JJ, Ramirez, Vizcaino in the order of highest leverage. Based on small sample size, you could argue that’s how leverage should be ordered with these 3 relievers.

    Before the GW single, Dansby had like a .150 BABIP. That is some serious bad luck. It was nice to see that he snuck a ball within inches of a fielder for a hit. A few more of those and our offense will really be clicking. We do, however, currently boast a lineup of 6 players with an OPS above .800. #samplesarefun

    Also, after the first inning, some rightfully wondered if Jaime Garcia was going to have a rough year. But after he left the game, he now has an ERA that would have made him our #3 starter last year, and had he gotten through the 7th unscathed, he would have been our #2 starter. #morefunwithsamples

    It’s only been 3 starts for basically everyone in the system now, but… the AAA rotation is pretty rough, and the AA rotation is extremely stout. Fried, Allard, Soroka, and Weigel all look great, peripherals are in line, etc., and the AAA rotation is largely mediocre with poor peripherals. I hope they just go ahead and move on from one of Jackson/Wisler/Blair being a starter and just cash in on some of their value as a trade or reliever. Are you really going to hold one of these studs back from the 40-man because you have Chaz Roe or EOF on the 40-man?

  6. Brilliant. A walk off, a 4 game sweep, the kid gets off the snide, that hair, a Pegasus Bridge reference, a PIAT explanation and a debate about May 44 win probabilities. Truly a red letter day. Then include the IWOTG reference and that is a Win. Good times last night.

    @10, completely agree. Time to see if Wisler, Blair, or Sims can make anything happen as a reliever. I would start with Sims but the next two are just behind.

    Personally, I think Soroka is fast tracking right now. Seen him a coupe of times at Rome and he’s just very poised and has a lot of movement – dare I say a little Maddux-esque ?

  7. IWOPT? IWOTG? I’m not that old, or that unread. Enlighten me and others like me, please.

    I’m also wondering about Mauricio. And did I miss something with AJ Minter? Looked like his first outing went well, but he’s been AWOL since. (See, I can do that capital letters stuff too)

  8. Minter pulled his groin. The broadcast team on Sunday speculated it’s a couple month set back, based on how hard they think it will be to come back from a groin injury. Their idea was that you don’t know when it’s fully healthy without potentially re-aggravating it, so they think they’ll be very cautious with him. They also speculated Minter had been looking at a call up in the short-term.

    Really, I’m just happy Luke Jackson got the call. They seem to be manipulating the deal with Roe, which I also really like.

  9. Bob

    IWOTP – It Was Only The Padres

    and I believe in this instance:

    IWOTG – It Was Only The Germany

  10. @8 Hey! JK

    By the way, is anyone reading Chippers book? If so, page 303:
    Bobby Cox quit in 2008 “I can’t work with Frank Wren. Can’t do it”. Interesting.

    Obviously JS talked him out of it at that time. According to Chipper, BC would have managed a longer time had Wren not been around.

  11. @2

    If the German’s had pushed through the Bulge in December 1944, it could have been different.

  12. I think it’s real easy for each individual person to rationalize losing by tying the noose around a departed individual. Have we not seen a re-writing of history where JS and BC are transcendent talents in their responsibilities, Coppy and Hart are new trailblazers, Wren was a disaster, but the reality is: we haven’t won a playoff game since 2003. Are these guys really that good when that reality exists? Was Wren so damning that JS and BC couldn’t stop him, and he dug such a huge hole that JH and JC had to come in and blow everything up? It’s a little convenient.

  13. @ 10
    Technically one of them would NOT have to be held back because of Roe or EOF since we currently only have 39 on the 40-man roster.

  14. @21

    But are we not still pursuing a bench bat? It seems we went with Recker because he was already on the 40-man, and he was a right-handed “bat”. And you’re going to keep a 3rd catcher on the 40-man anyway, so adding a real bench bat wouldn’t affect him.

  15. Starling Marte hit with an 80-gamer for PEDs. Also ineligible for playoffs.

    Can we take his walk-off homer away?

  16. @17

    Hitler’s goal in the Ardennes was to force a cease fire with the British and Americans which wouldn’t have happened. It was always a doomed attack because the Allies had total air superiority, though Hitler had been informed otherwise by Goering. The attack was a total surprise, yes but they never stood much chance of making it to Antwerp let alone the notion that the Allies would ever seek a separate peace given the total lack of threat Germany could pose to the British Isles let alone the US.

    And LoL Stephen Ambrose… His books always ignore the fact that there was a bigger more important front in the European Theater. The war in the East had been going one way since the Battle of Kursk in 1943 and really since Stalingrad.

  17. @20 — Whatever they say about Wren now, the facts of the matter are that he was JS’s assistant GM and handpicked successor. They didn’t even interview any other candidates. They gave him free reign on roster decisions and front office hirings, so it’s a little late at this juncture to introduce the idea that he was universally loathed.

    It was probably time for Wren to go — he’d pillaged the farm system and used up the payroll trying to win to the point that the team could go no further — but I don’t buy for a second that Braves insiders knew from the start that he’d be trouble. If they did, he would have never gotten the top job or been allowed to stick his own guys in high-level positions.

  18. At 21 – isn’t the extra roster spot reserved for Ryan Howard? He was supposed to be in extended spring training. Any word on when he may reach Gwinnett?

  19. I’d hope they’d give Bonifacio an unconditional release once Kemp comes off the DL. He’s a waste of a roster space imo

  20. 20 — Picking nits, but we won playoff games in ’04, ’05, ’10, and ’13. You could say we haven’t won a playoff series since ’01.

  21. Oh look…padding our league leading DP count. Only 1 behind the Astros for the MLB lead

  22. I’m impressed with Folty, and pitching alongside/against Scherzer gives you a taste of what Folty can be. I think he did a really good job (with help from Suzuki) in getting out of the 4th. Couple runs here in the 5th. I hope he can get through 6 strong.

  23. What in the world happened to Folty between the 4th and 5th innings? He’s completely lost it.

  24. Quite a good outing by Folty. Only 2 SO and 4 BB but very nice otherwise with an efficient pitch count.

  25. I’d be happy never to see our Greek demigod again. I do wish Rio was off to a better start. In any event, Rio Ruiz may not be a major league caliber third sacker, but we know the incumbent isn’t.

  26. Did the organist just play Rainy Day Women as the walkup for Zimmerman? That’s pretty good–slightly better than playing it for, say, Dylan Bundy.

  27. @10–Making your point even stronger, a lousy start tonight by Newcomb, and an excellent start by Allard. Remember, though, Soroka and Allard are both still teenagers. Even if they make the big leagues early, there is no realistic chance that they are in the rotation next year as 20 year olds, is there?

  28. If the Nats still only had 2 runs, I think we score the tying run on that pop to Harper. This game was ruined by spots 22-25 of the roster. There is NO reason why Chase d’Arnaud, Emilio Bonifacio, and Eric O’Flaherty are playing in high leverage situations. NONE. This is on Coppy 110%. Build a damn roster, Mr. Genius Roster Maneuver Fella. Said this all winter. We can contend, or at least pretend, with a full roster, and we lose another game because trash is up when it counts. Pathetic.

  29. Seriously, play to freaking win. What’s the point? Teheran getting pulled after 87 pitches so that our pen can serve up gophers. EOF on the roster. Roe on the roster. Bonifacio, Recker, d’Arnaud up in crucial spots. This is a clown show of a roster. Some great pieces, but a C- by Coppy on roster composition. Just very disappointing to see some of this going on with so much optimism with this franchise.

  30. Exactly…Having Pagan or Howard at least makes things interesting. Bonafacio is completely useless and D’Arnaud is semi useless

  31. I wish I had screenshotted it when someone changed Bucknor’s Wikipedia to “first blind umpire”. That’d be appropriate at this juncture.

  32. @47

    I’d like to think you could still contend with your 4th and 5th starters being 20 year old phenoms. Teheran, Folty, 3rd starter acquired via FA or the trade of our 24-25 year old suspects (Wisler, Newcomb, Blair, Sims, Ruiz), and a scenario where Allard and Soroka have earned a spot. Plus, Fried and Weigel. Cheap, cheap rotation. And by not putting $30M into spots 2-4, you can add some serious fire power to the offense. The future is so much more hopeful when you’re not hoping the AAA guys figure it out.

  33. Call up Rio and let him platoon with Adonis. He shouldn’t be starting vs RHP. Call up Howard and sign KJ or Pagan.

  34. That might have been the worst sequence that I’ve ever seen by an umpire. Bucknor had better thank his lucky stars that we didn’t tie or win the game. Though I say that as if anything would’ve happened to him for outright stealing a game from the Nationals. Nothing would have.

    Yes, the bench continues to absolutely suck. And yes, we have to be able to do better when in the middle of a rally than Bonifacio-D’Arnaud.

  35. @64 If prospects are ready, they are ready to contribute regardless of age. Age shouldn’t be a consideration.

  36. D’Arnaud is batting .375. I don’t think for a minute that he will keep that up, but it’s a little unfair to put him in the same category right now as the .133 hitting Bonifacio.

  37. We’ve just experienced a string of solid starts from everyone in the rotation. Hope they can keep it up.

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