Bright Candled Braves 4 Phlickering Phils1

My candle burns at both ends

it will not last the night

but O my foes and O my friends

it gives a lovely light.                                   Edna St Vincent Millay


Another milestone for our rookie. His first 0-fer. Fine, get it over with on a night it didn’t matter. First GS and first cycle await.

We didn’t need him primarily because Basil Folty showed us just what a fine pitcher he can be. If this wasn’t his best start as a Brave I’d be very surprised, he had everything working including his control plus a substantial increase in velocity – two pitches in the first at 100, two or three others 99. His line was 6 IP. 1 Run, 2 BB, 6 K. Also he in no way caved in when Franco ambushed his first pitch leading off the Philly phfith. Did not bother him and he went on to close out the sixth for a total of 91 pitches. The hitherto unbeatable Pivetta had disappeared after 5, well beaten. Folty, we were proud of you.

Offensively we pretty well matched last night’s early show scoring three runs by the end of the third. Unlike then though we did not give them away and the Phils had to wait until the bottom of the fifth to open their solitary account.

Individually, Freddie was one of the offensive stars of the night. He consistently made better contact than either Ozzie and Acuna, ended up only one for 5 but was robbed of a 2 run homer by an astonishing catch in the CF bushes by Herrera. Nick Markakis meanwhile had shown how it was done by homering to right in the second to get the show going. We lead thereafter but it’s disconcerting to see how frequently we snatch an early lead and then the bats close down. A word about Nick, he has been phenomenal to this point in the season for us. Surprising HR power and a consummate performance in the field. Lay off him, it’s old. And now also wrong.

It all sounds rather easy doesn’t it but it was not to be. From the seventh on we could not escape our bullpen and, again they(or rather he) put us through it, Mr Minter. He needs a month minimum in Gwinnett, his control is persistently pathetic and his temper matches that. He must by now be averaging over one walk per inning. Tonight he walked the first two batters and was pulled after one third of an inning.

BUT, more encouragingly, Carle had pitched a scoreless seventh with 2 hits but no walks before Minter appeared. After him the estimable Henry Winkler closed out the eighth by striking out the last two hitters. Vizzy did what Vizzy does without somehow looking entirely convincing in the ninth but we were home and dry, 15 and 11, with the rubber game tomorrow.


95 thoughts on “Bright Candled Braves 4 Phlickering Phils1”

  1. Markakis is doing well so far. I’m expecting him to regress to his usual OPS of around .730 at some point, but I hope he can keep it up. Even if he regresses, I think he’s our best option for the remainder of the year, unless we are blown away by a great offer – not likely. It will be interesting to see what Joey Bats brings, but it’s hard not to like the offense for this team.

  2. Speaking of Joey Bats:

    Perhaps this serves to prime the pump that he won’t be called up if he doesn’t hit at AAA, which seems to be a slight departure from the perception of an inevitable call-up that the FO/writers originally gave.

  3. Great win. Allard and Touki with great performances as well. Touki with 0BB and 7K in 7IP.

  4. He hasn’t had a Spring Training. This is his right now. I think it was odd to say so strongly that he would be called up immediately, and I’d imagine they’ll give him plenty of time to see if he’s ready.

    That was Allard’s best outing at AAA so far. He’s getting overshadowed by Soroka and Wright, and rightfully so, but he’s still a 20-year old at AAA, and that’s very impressive.

  5. Look at what’s happening with Alex Cobb and Greg Holland. Without Spring Trainings, these guys are really struggling. The only exception I’m seeing is Arrieta. I think it was very short-sighted of everyone to think that these players could just hop between the lines without Spring Training and expect to keep up.

  6. Someone has kidnapped Snit and filled out today’s lineup:

    2B Albies
    LF Acuna
    1B Freddie
    RF Kakes
    C Suzuki
    3B Camargo
    SS Swanson
    P McCarthy
    CF Ender

    Also, Soroka has been scratched from his start. Injured, called-up, or traded?

  7. It’s almost as if the anti-Snitker/“old school guys are stupid and dumb” talking points say more about the commenters than the manager.

  8. If Teheran goes on the DL, they will need both Fried and someone else in the rotation. I think the Soroka pull means that Wisler is not being considered. He had his chance. Gohara not looking ready. If Sanchez can’t go then Soroka is next man up. Even if Julio pitches, they might decide that Fried is doing well enough in the bullpen that they prefer to give Soroka a tryout.

    Bottom line is that the organization is still testing to see what they have. There are still a few more pieces that haven’t finished the process (Bautista, Gohara, Soroka). Once these pieces are tested, then the trading fun will begin.

    Within a month the Braves should have 8 legitimate starting pitchers – Teheran, Folty, McCarthy, Newcomb, Sanchez, Gohara, Fried, and Soroka. Now Sanchez and Fried would be good long men and someone may get injured, but that’s a lot of depth at the major league level and a starting rotation is in there that is playoff worthy.

  9. With an off day tomorrow, they are skipping the 5th starter this time around. If Teheran can’t go, Soroka will take his spot.

  10. I know some of you guys have been critical of Snitker’s quick hook. Do you think this could have something to do with sabermetrics and AA’s influence? It seems like they are keenly aware of when a pitcher starts losing it, whether he’s thrown 70 pitches or 100. I don’t have a strong opinion either way but I wonder if this is possible or likely.

  11. It’s almost as if the anti-Snitker/“old school guys are stupid and dumb” talking points say more about the commenters than the manager.

    It’s almost as if someone demonstrably smarter than Snitker is telling him what to do now that Acuna has been called up.

    Once these pieces are tested, then the trading fun will begin.

    It takes two to trade, and the list of big pre-Memorial Day trades isn’t very long. Good teams also value their depth.

  12. That’s a new-school lineup for sure. Snitker had some help.

    I also like the fact that we’re not throwing a getaway Sunday-special out there. Let’s win.

  13. Snitker confirmed that Folty was pulled because of tightness in his back, and he didn’t want to send him back out after a long inning and in chilly temps.

  14. @19

    I think he was trolling people who incorrectly criticized his grammar yesterday. DOB, at this point, is petty, unhinged, and a waste of time reading on Twitter.

  15. I know some of you guys have been critical of Snitker’s quick hook. Do you think this could have something to do with sabermetrics and AA’s influence?

    Yes. We’re utilizing our starters like we’re in a seven-game playoff series with no real ace. Our bullpen isn’t built for this either, but whatever, the team isn’t doing badly, and if some of these guys flame out, no big loss.

  16. SO painful to hear Joe and Skip discussing OBP vs RBI.

    Throw strikes, Amanda’s husband!

  17. Anyone know why Acuna didn’t go to third on Freeman’s fly to RF? (I have no TV just pitchcast) Seems like that would have gotten another run either on Neck’s fly or on the WP.

  18. Frenchy is quite good on the radio, even if he just had a rant against exit velo.

  19. I think that this team is 1-2 pitching trades away from being a legitimate playoff contender. We’re far enough in, and they are believing.

    The bullpen needs a Grant Dayton-type trade and what Darren O’Day used to be. Those guys are out there but you can’t just expect the teams to give them away. If you knew you could trade Bryse Wilson but thought that doing so would get you to the playoffs THIS year, you have to do things like that, IMO.

  20. Joey Bats isn’t the enemy of Johan Camargo. He is the coming death of Charlie Culberson.

  21. He gets overlooked being on a team with Dansby and Albies, but Camargo is pretty fantasticly coiffed himself.

  22. A lot of people think that Velasquez will eventually end up as a reliever for the Phillies.

  23. Moustakas has a mutual option for 2019 as well. He’d be a year and a half “rental” if they got him.

    That said, if I’m trading parts to improve this team and keeping an eye on the long term, I’m getting a real gorram starter who can pitch into the 7th. Second choice would be to tweak the pen with better middle guys, a la Chief.

  24. I have already put out the perfect rental trade. Moose and Herrera for Markakis, Wisler or Sims, Weigel, one or two prospects from the list in the MLB Braves 20-30 (e.g. de la Cruz, Derian, Tarnok, Lugbauer) + $1M. Unless you think Markakis can keep up his hot hitting and not fall back to his norm, this trade would be great for both sides.

    Note that Markakis’ current bottom line is something he hasn’t achieved since 2008, his third year in the league.

  25. Why would a team rebuilding with young players want a 34 year old Markakis in the last year of his contract?

  26. 62 — If you’re talking to me, we are not talking about the same guy and the same subject. I was referring to Roger’s idea of including Markakis as the centerpiece to a Moose deal.

  27. @63 – Ha, seems I got my Greeks confused. And your’e right, a rebuilding team has no need for Neck.

  28. The Royals OF is a mess. They have ready replacements at 3B. Markakis is only included to offset salary and current performance. Seems like no one is seeing that Herrera was included – a primo reliever with closer credentials. This way, the Royals get some decent prospects without sacrificing any on-field performance or salary.

    As someone pointed out, Moustakas has a mutual option which I’m guessing both Royals and Moose would reject to be able take another chance at FA without being tied to compensation.

    Perfect trade for both. Looking at the history of deadline rental deals, anyone who is not a potential HOF’er will get a maximum of two 20-30 ranked prospects. Over at MLBTR, they suggested that Herrera is worth more than Moustakas. So I figure two 20-30 ranked prospects for Herrera, Weigel (17) and decent 40-man pitcher and Markakis for Moustakas. There’s balance in money and roster spots and the Royals get three decent prospects and some help for this year.

  29. Someone on Twitter accurately predicted the Kemp trade. Roger might be onto something.

  30. @44 What was Frenchy’s argument against exit velo? I would have figured even he would grok the value in hitting the ball hard.

  31. And McCarthy fails to go 6 and Moylan can’t finish the 7th. I wonder if Freeman can finish the 8th. I bet it takes both Whitley and Biddle to finish the 8th/9th.

  32. @73 Everyone has druthers but the Braves aren’t going to give up that much money. Braves will only go for a revenue neutral trade. The Royals don’t need someone as close as Dustin. They’d be more interested in Izzy who could be one of the 20-30 ranked prospects.

  33. Anyone believe the Braves could score like this with Freddie taking an 0-fer and leaving 6 guys on base?

  34. 76 — I’m trying to say that nobody rebuilding wants Neck. If they are punting this year, they don’t care how bad their current Major League OFs are.

    Markakis is old and his contract expires so that does them no good in 2019 and beyond. They want guys who are young, cost-controlled and can become their OFs in their future. If they want it to be revenue neutral the Royals could throw in cash. Your idea of the prospects who could be included is good, I’m just saying they would want an OFer that is young instead of old, so they would replace Markakis with Peterson or someone else in that deal you proposed.

  35. @79 Your logic makes no sense. Either the Royals throw in $12M for nothing or $12M and get Markakis. If I must I say throw in Dustin too…. The deal makes that much sense. But there’s no way the Royals would throw in $10M for Dustin.

  36. damn, so close by ozzie to tie the record; if the braves hadn’t lost a game to snow/rain, I’m sure he would’ve gotten it.

    I’m sure he’ll have plenty more opportunities in the future, though

  37. We need to get creative and find a way to throw at Kapler.

    Great lineup produces 10 runs. We’ll be seeing that again.

  38. There’s going to be two schools of thought about Frenchy as the road radio color guy. There are those of us that feel the chemistry with him and Jim, and I think it was one of the best radio jobs I’ve listened to in some years. The on-field product helped. Then there are the people that will hate his comments and jabs against analytics, and those people are real fun at parties.

  39. Man, good for Biddle. Stadium gun had him at 96, and you’d have to think he was amped.

    What’s not to love, folks? Dansby has come down to earth, but you have so many guys playing in the clouds that it doesn’t matter. The Franchise left six on, and it didn’t even matter. There is so much athleticism on the position player side that few teams will be able to keep up. We look like the Astros. ::ducks::

  40. @88 I agree with everything you said minus the Astros comment. The one thing we need is for the starters to find length and the relievers to find the strike zone. As good as it has been, the starting staff is not in its final state and we need to add a couple more reliable relievers. And a few 3B HRs would not be a bad thing.

    What looked really good about this lineup is that, after the 1st inning, we had Ender, Ozzie, and Acuna batting in front of Freddie. It may lead to a few less ABs for Ender but some fantastic run scoring possibilities. I think batting the pitcher ninth has blunted several run scoring opportunities.

  41. Dansby turning that DP made up for the ofer and earlier bad throw. He’s playing a solid though not spectacular shortstop, and he was never going to lead the league in WAR.

    The day off will help him.

    See? Winning makes even old grumps tolerant.

  42. I meant the position player side. Definitely not the pitching, before or after Verlander.

    Ender>Ozzie>Acuna lets Ender and Ozzie run as well, and discourages Acuna from running, which is also fine. For the rest of the game, that’s a great lineup and keeps Acuna out of the 3-hole spot while still basically keeping him behind those two and in front of Freddie. It’s really a genius move.

  43. Biddle absolutely tried to plunk Knapp to lead off the 9th. Missed him twice, and was mad at himself for it after the game.

  44. I just saw some of the replays. If you leave the ball low and in to Albies, you can forget it. And on Acuna’s steal, you an see just how fast he is.

  45. @91 OK, Rob. It’s really funny that this rebuild has been so focused on pitching and it’s the position player side that has succeeded so far with gusto.

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