VINCERA ! The ‘3/2′ Braves 8…Bumblin’ ‘Backs 5……VINCERA!



The – young- voice, the famous aria were hardly deserved by this saga of awful pitching and myriad miscues. BUT there was still much to be enjoyed in this hurley burley affair which still managed to bring the tying run to the plate in the 8th with nobody out. We stood firm. And thus we were able to notch back to back wins against a team that on both nights looked better than us and whose season record was far superior, so what is going on? That certain something, we have it, whatever it is and we must try  to keep it for as long as we can.

Pitching. We were awful, starting with Folty sulking already in the first innings and maintaining his pout for 117 pitches till he was mercifully yanked after 5.1 innings – with a one run lead! So the only number that was terrible for him was the number of pitches. It was his bearing that embarrassed every Braves fan tonight. And while we’re on his back it is high time Snit told him to stop these pathetic at bats where he seems to wander around the plate and flap vaguely at the ball and clearly just wants to get back to the bench. Enough. The 3/2 Braves?? There were something over 20 such counts in the game, we prevailed there too.

Pitching Pt 2…The pen, dear me. With the honorable exceptions of Ramirez in the 7th., Brothers 8th, and JJ closing we produced a rag tag bag of Jackson, Kroll and Freeman. All awful. That Kroll ‘got’ the win for his one out  is farcically ironic. On their side we dinged up their starter Corbin who apparently was 2 and 0 against us and hadn’t given up a run to us in something like 25 innings total. That didn’t last long. Nor did our pal Randle Delgado who was fated to give up the big hit that effectively ended a series on one run leads for both teams.

Defense. We were treated to not one but two classic Claude/Gaston moments in back to back innings by Dansby and Camargo, each going for the same ground ball and knocking into each other.Yikes. But Freddie, who could do nothing with his bat all evening, made a fabulous diving save of an errant throw to first which ended an innings and preserved our one run lead. BP had a great evening with the bat- 3 for 5 with a homer and 2 RBIs. Ender too, as he always seems to do, finished 3/5, Kemp and Camargo each 2/4. It is time we stop the nonsense of hitting Johan 8th. We are wasting some of his many talents on the bases and his contact rate, and speed, should be used to score the elite bats ahead of him.

We end this hocus pocus affair with the craziest happening of all, in the bottom of the 6th when we finally scored 4 runs to seemingly end the close nature of the score. The bases were loaded, none out, and yet another awful pitcher was being banished to the showers thus creating a spot for a pinch hitter

The aforesaid Delgado was pitching for them, from the right side.  We had two choices from the bench – the left handed Matt Adams who did not start today and who greatly favors those pitching from the right side. And poor old fingernail chomping Wayne Adams, pinch hitter occasional, who does not.

So it was obviously Matt. And Snit sent Wayne out. Chip snorted, I screamed. Couldn’t believe it. But you know the rest. Bases clearing double to the LF wall. Please someone explain that choice. But Wayne had created our first big lead of the evening at a crucial, late time. 6/3 in an innings we had entered one run behind. But how appropriate for a crazy game and, as it turned out, there was more than one of their bats to come ahead where that lead was threatened. But they couldn’t. Back to Back.



36 thoughts on “VINCERA ! The ‘3/2′ Braves 8…Bumblin’ ‘Backs 5……VINCERA!”

  1. The Bad News defense was hardly laughable to Braves fans, yet our team prevailed. Go figure. I only threw up twice; but it may have been the wine, and that’s the truth.

    Great recap, bard, of this comedy of errors. Who knew BP with proper rest could still be Dat Dude at the plate and a stabilizing influence in the field? Not I.

    Sweep the Snakes today for old men everywhere.

  2. I had hoped Jaime would be donning another uniform by today but never with Ozzie as collateral damage.

  3. I wouldn’t praise Brothers too much. He did add to the boneheaded defensive display by pointlessly allowing a run to score late in the game by taking the tougher out at first rather than flipping to the plate for an easy out there. The way this game was going, I was sure that was going to destroy us, but I felt better after Jace’s home run, and then Jim Johnson was on tonight anyway, so it didn’t matter.

  4. I don’t think the tag at the place was an easier play. It would have been the smart play, though.

    Also, they’d bring in a lefty to face Matt Adams.

  5. @7

    Agreed. Not the easier, but the smart one.

    This stretch of schedule is a gauntlet for an NL East team’s standards, and it’s started out well, but we just don’t have the arms to compete for a playoff spot. Johnson’s effectiveness is severely reduced when he’s over-used, and it would have been nice to avoid using him in a game we scored 8 runs. But the starter couldn’t muster less than 20 pitches an inning, and the pen let them right back in. When they brought in Jackson in the 6th, I’d have bet they wanted to use him for multiple innings, but that didn’t happen. Then they brought in Freeman, who also could have gone multiple innings, and he wasn’t effective either. I think we’re definitely a .500 team, which is a huge improvement, but I doubt we can run off with 5-6 straight wins that a playoff team can do without being able to shorten these games.

    But with that said, I’d been careful to say about Coppy that he hadn’t demonstrated he could build a major league roster. He couldn’t find the 20th to 25th players on a roster that makes the difference between a single game or single series being won or lost. And I think he had demonstrated that he was a pretty good auctioneer but couldn’t actually win in the roster development areas where he was competing against major league GMs who were actually trying to win. It’s easier to look like a genius when you get Texas to give you a legit prospect for your spare parts, but Texas was trying to win a playoff series, something we haven’t done since the early part of last decade, and just 12 short months later, that legit prospect has stalled.

    But now, I think Coppy is demonstrating that he’s developed a talent pipeline that can lead to at least a near-playoff contender. We’re not losing games because of a collective of events like the 8th-hole hitter striking out with runners on, you let the pitcher hit because you don’t have a PH, a couple relievers throw gas on the fire, and you’ve now lost. The roster is deep enough where while you may only have 1 elite player, you have an ability to pull the string on several moves late in games that mostly can work out, and I think that’s great for Coppy.

    Look at the AAA game last night. The 5th best starter on their club, Aaron Blair, a former top prospect, threw a good game, but still won’t factor into the team’s plans. The 1-5 was Albies, Acuna, SRod, Ruiz, and Santana. That’s pretty darn cool. All those guys could see the parent team at some point in the near future.

  6. The pen is going to need a lot of help since our starters rarely pitch into the 6th. I don’t understand why Snit doesn’t let Dickey pitch deeper into the late innings.

  7. More and more Ender’s stroke reminds me of Tony Gwynn and Rod Carew. And if BP keeps this up we will get quite a haul for him.

  8. Two innings and Jaime’s looking good, but we’ve heaRd this song before. Can he go a quality six today?

  9. I’m going to be sad when we trade Phillips. It’s the right move, but I like having him up there taking those huge cuts. The double last night where he went down to one knee was gold.

  10. That Swanson play a minute ago (which was probably correctly scored as a hit and an error…it was a tough play in the hole), reminds me that I meant to come on here last night and say the scoring of the Inciarte ground ball in the sixth inning of that game that was booted and eventually resulted in Lane Adams scoring was one of the dumbest scoring decisions I’ve seen in quite awhile. Not only was it clearly an error all the way, but Lane Adams stopped rounding third, so you can’t give Inciarte an RBI on that, even if you do give him a hit. And it clearly wasn’t a hit, anyway. A simply mind-numbing scoring decision, and the very definition of home cooking, which never fails to piss me off.

  11. From previous thread:

    Stu, I agree that value-for-value, Albies+ for Quintana is a fair trade. I just think it’s a terrible fit. We’re a mid-market team, and we’re trading a cheap, top prospect. Just doesn’t make any sense. I’d say you could count the untouchable players throughout the entire system on a couple hands: Freeman, Swanson, Albies, Folty, Allard, Newcomb, and Soroka. I think that’s it. But when you need cost-controlled dirt cheap players for as long of a term as possible, I just don’t think you trade Albies.

  12. @13 Chipper was on Twitter last night saying he wished this scorer had been around back when he was playing, would have helped his average.

  13. @13–yes that was indeed the wrong scoring decision for both of the reasons you say. In fact, it was so obviously wrong that I was certain they would come on in the next half inning and inform us that the official scoring had changed. Does anyone tell the official scorer when he gets it wrong?

    @12–I will also miss Phillips. He’s a fun player to watch and he has added real (and unexpected) value to this team. But you have to trade him. He is a free agent after this year and they have multiple replacements available.

  14. @14

    Maybe not this year, but at some point, we’ll likely have to trade some prospects to get over the top. We’ll need to get a frontline starter from somewhere, and there will almost certainly be a position or two where we’ll need to go outside the organization. And they’ll have to be good prospects that no one will want to lose…Aaron Blair is not gonna net us anything that gets us over the top. And when that day comes, everyone on here is going to absolutely freak. I’ll probably skip Braves Journal that day.

  15. Best broadcast ever. Watching on MLB TV and for some reason Chip and Paul’s mikes are off, but the rest are on. Heaven.

  16. Specified: Frontline starter. Not Kate’s husband who once was and still carries the salary. Better to get a Chris Archer or a Marcus Stroman, don’t you think?

  17. @17

    I’m sure he gets some snarky remarks in the press box, and those might be enough to get him to look at it again and change it on his own, but the only official appeal allowed is from either team’s manager within 24 hours of the conclusion of the game. There’s no way the Braves would say anything, and the D-backs would only do so if they were super-concerned with that last run of the inning being earned instead of unearned. After a loss like that, Arizona would probably have bigger fish to fry and would be just as likely to not say anything.

    Fact is, an official scorer will get crap for calling something a hit way less frequently than he will for calling something an error. There is something of a perverse incentive to call everything close a hit.

    That having been said, though, the play last night wasn’t really that close.

  18. I agree with those who have offered praise of Paul Byrd in the booth. Chip (channeling his inner Joe Simpson) was decrying the fact that modern players don’t know how to run the bases because they just sit back, whale away, and swing for the fences. Byrd immediately came back and suggested that good baserunning and hitting home runs are not mutually exclusive. Doing the little things to win is a great thing–and so is hitting home runs! Joe often implies that he believes that hitting behind the runner and scoring one run is much preferable to a 3 run homer.

  19. Here’s to Dat Dude. Make it a double.

    Six run lead, Jaime. Throwing strikes would be a good idea.

  20. Don’t look now, by the way, but this team that nobody thinks is a serious contender is five innings away from pretty much eviscerating one of the best teams in the league in a three-game series.

  21. As late as a couple of games ago, I was among those urging that the Braves not trade any of our prospects for someone to help try to make the playoffs this year. I guess I still feel that way, because this team as currently constructed is still very unlikely to win enough to make the postseason. And that’s for the reason set out by Rob @8–not enough arms.

    But, if you look at the wild card standings, the teams they would have to beat out don’t look so good. The Rockies have been in free fall and Arizona is not playing well either. And neither of those teams was projected to be very good before the season started, so this may be natural regression toward a .500 record for them. Milwaukee continues to play well, but I have a hard time seeing them as a 90 win team either. Only LA and the Natspos are likely to win in the mid 90’s or better. Surely the Cubs will be better the rest of the way then they have been, but as of now the Braves are essentially tied with them.

    And remember, they only have to beat out 2 of the Dbacks, Rockies, Brewers, and the Cubs (assuming the Cards or Bucs don’t turn it around). The odds are still long against making the playoffs this year, but it is no longer just irrational exuberance to think about it.

    Still, leave Ozzie alone!!

  22. Man, watching them fix the mound brings back a lot of memories from college and HS. Sadly, I never made it to a level where the pitchers weren’t their own grounds crew.

  23. Chip somehow managed to tell the story of Stanley Burrell, a.k.a MC Hammer, without mentioning that the “Hammer” came from his alleged resemblance to Henry Aaron.

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