Dodgers 8, Braves 2

If you’ve become a Braves fan during the last 25 years, you probably don’t feel about the Dodgers the way I do. Over the past 5 years, the team you had to beat to win the division has been the Gnatspos, five to ten years ago it was the Phightin Phils, 18-20 years ago IWOTM. For two very odd seasons that I’d prefer to forget, it was the Fish. I have no fondness for any of those organizations, but my peak disdain for each team varies by era.

But for the first 25 years of the Atlanta Braves’ existence, the team that always stood between the Braves and the pennant was the Bums. (OK, for most of those years, so did virtually every other team in the league.) The Dodgers dominated the league for much of that era, but most especially in those few seasons that the Braves were relevant.

The very first Atlanta Braves team in 1966—the one that Jonathan F has so ably chronicled for us–was never really in contention, but the team that did win that year was the Dodgers. 1969 was the first year of divisional play and the Braves’ first pennant. On September 18, their new divisional rivals, behind HOFer Don Sutton, beat HOFer Phil Niekro to pull within one game of the Braves. Fortunately the Braves had a strong final two weeks and the Dodgers didn’t.

In the only season of the 1970’s that the Braves finished over .500, they won 88 games–but finished behind the Dodgers by 14 games anyway. When the Braves won their second pennant in 1982, they squeaked in by one game when the Dodgers lost on the last day of the regular season. !983 was the only other season in the 1980’s that the Braves finished over .500; they came in second to the Dodgers. The 1991 worst to first team overcame a 9 ½ game deficit at the ASB to beat the Dodgers by one game.

Even though they haven’t been our division rivals for 25 years, I still think of the Dodgers as enemy #1. As far as I’m concerned, Dodgers delenda est. Of course, the franchise of Jackie Robinson and Vin Scully can’t be all bad. But this is also the team of Tommy Lasorda and Steve Garvey. And then during tonight’s game Braves14 reminded us of this:

Thursday’s game didn’t make me feel any better. Rich Hill was dominant, tossing 7 scoreless. You wouldn’t believe it if you only saw the box score, but Aníbal Sánchez was just about as sharp. The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth when this year’s Folk Hero did his impersonation of the original 2010 Folk Hero. Thanks to FakeDansby’s error, a groundout, and a bloop, the Dodgers scored the first two runs of the game. The only legitimate run Sánchez gave up was a dinger by newest Dodger Manny Machado in the sixth. Then in the 7th the normally reliable Albies made a throwing error and Rich Hill (!) drove in the fourth run, and that was it for the pitcher whisperer on the night.

(For what it’s worth, I’ve become a believer that Aníbal’s renewal this year is not just a fluke. The man can command a 91 mph fastball and a changeup–which was enough to send Glavine to Cooperstown).

The manager then turned to Sam Freeman and the rout was on. Luke Jackson gave up a couple more in the 8th. Obviously, Snit is concerned that AA is not sufficiently aware of the Braves’ desperate need for bullpen help, so he did his best to make the case.

Acuña did hit a two run shot in the 8th for the Braves only runs on the night.

Our stopper Foltzie goes against some guy named Kershaw on Friday. Let’s beat these Bums.

Author: tfloyd

Tfloyd was born on the site of Atlanta Fulton County Stadium. Before the stadium was built, that is; it was then the site of Piedmont Hospital. It took the Braves another 11 years to arrive on what is now Hank Aaron Drive, but I‘ve always liked to arrive at the ballpark early.

153 thoughts on “Dodgers 8, Braves 2”

  1. Yes, Chief, if this is the only trade we make, that will be disappointing. But we need a LOOGY, and Venters is one.

  2. I love getting Venters back. I admit there’s nostalgia involved, but he’s having a decent year and is better than at least 3 pitchers in our bullpen. Obviously this shouldn’t be the only move, but not a bad start.

  3. This says more about our pen than Venters, but he’s tied for 6th in our pen in bWAR.

  4. Thanks for the shout out, tfloyd. It may be just you and me wallowing in 1966, but at least *We’re* having fun. Nice recap… And I’m a Dodger-hater too. And they can keep Jerry Royster at al. I want those Dusty Baker years back.

  5. Venters is another guy who will struggle to pitch back to back days. He has pitched just 14 major league innings and 22 games.

    But he’s still an improvement over Freeman, Moylan, Jackson, and Phillips (I know, SSS).

  6. I had a thought of Venters when perusing the Rays roster for trade candidates (note: Chaz Roe still available!!), but I thought “surely not”. And I didn’t want to even say I had thought of it in response here. I thought you guys might really pummel me.

    At least AA made good on his “we’ll get what we can get without giving up any prospects.”

    If we sign EOF over the winter (AGAIN), does it mean we’re committed to bringing Kimbrel back?

    We should able to do better by giving up some of the lesser prospects.

  7. Braves were tied for the division lead and 7 ahead of the Nationals, then I blinked and now they’re 2.5 back and only 4.5 ahead of the Nationals.

  8. I’m starting to wonder if the front office doesn’t think this team is for real.

  9. Thanks, tfloyd. Yesterday happened, but there’s a game today. Give’m heck, Braves.

    Can we DFA play by play guys?

  10. Smitty, don’t lose hope yet. Venters just made sense as a cheap, possibly effective pick up. I believe we’ll see another move for a reliever before the deadline.

  11. I don’t even read into this deal with the Rays. I think the bullpen had been letting games get away this week, and it made sense to go ahead and bring Venters into the mix (ie. clearly AA has been in talks with the Rays and this doesn’t mean the talks are done).

    I’m pessimistic about the likelihood of the Braves making a blockbuster deal (for a starter or bat), but I’m confident the Braves aren’t done (ie. they’re still talking to teams, will probably add another reliever to the pen).

  12. “General manager Alex Anthopoulos had spoken with the Rays about Venters over the past few days. As late as Thursday afternoon, he had doubts the deal would get done, or at least be completed so soon. But it was finished following the Braves’ 8-2 loss to the Dodgers.”

    ““He couldn’t say yes (fast enough) before the word ‘Venters’ came out of my mouth,” Anthopoulos said. “Done. Everyone really likes him. He’s had a reputation as one of the good guys in the game. So that’s obviously a nice add.”

    Venters is the first domino to fall in what could be several bullpen changes. The Braves have needed a boost in their relief group, especially following the late struggles of lefty Sam Freeman.”

    So…. expect to see Venters out there every night. Snitker can’t wait.

    Joking… but I truly do hope this is the first of several dominoes to fall.

  13. @19 “late struggles of lefty Sam Freeman.” By late struggles did he mean the entire 2018 season?

  14. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah … really a guy who has had 3 1/2 Tommy John surgeries … u kidding me .. thats our move ….. well I guess how worse could you get than Sam Freeman .. so it is a improvement .. one thats gonna make enough boost … nah ….

  15. The question of what Atlanta will do with “currency”, international bonus pool money, that they can’t use is being answered. If the Braves let it go for literally nothing, then they’re derelict of their responsibilities, and we shouldn’t cheer for them. But of course they’re not, so they use some of it to add a flyer to stick in the pen. I guess they’ll option Phillips to make room for Venters?

  16. they better DFA Freeman ,, ROB …. the bonus money was useless I guess .. they probably wouldnt be able to sign 1 guy for that …. they need to offload Markakis for bonus money and maybe Suzuki for some money so they could have a little .. Flowers has taken a nose dive ..I didnt expect the pair to produce like last year but both have went down … and whats up with Snit not playing Camargo at ss and Culberson at 3B ..

  17. So we’re replacing Sam Freeman with…a Sam Freeman that probably can’t pitch on back to back nights? Meh.

    We’ll be 5+ games out by the deadline and at that point maybe we can be sellers and try to get that farm ranking up a notch or two. That’s what most of y’all want anyways.

  18. If this is the only trade they make, then yes, please be irate. I’ll join you. But this is like being pissed off your team is losing in the 4th inning. It’s a long game.

  19. That’s not true. Just about everyone here is hopeful we’ll be surprised with a huge trade for a bonafide ace or at least a strong #2 or #3 pitcher, or a good bat.

    The thing is that the front office seems to be concentrating almost exclusively on players who can be controlled beyond this season, and no one (not front office nor the fans) wants to see the Braves make a big splash involving 1 or more top prospects for possibly a rental who may still not give the Braves the boost to finish the run this season (like, these things are never a given that the player obtained will set the stadium on fire upon arrival and send the team soaring into the playoffs).

    We’d all like to see a deal for Chris Archer where we trade away a good package of prospects that we’re comfortable it’s a good deal on both sides (and not some overpayment).

  20. @22 Rob therein lies part of the problem. We need to find replacements that will get the bullpen whittled back to Freeman/Moylan. You’re thinking Phillips is first out; who’s second? Jackson? then Moylan then Freeman? That means we need four shiny new relievers. Or at least get Viz back and three relievers.

    I am trying to figure out how our pen went from needing a couple of relievers to four. I guess the answer lies in McCarthy and Viz. And with Teheran going downhill, a starter would be nice too.

    Why in the hell aren’t Allard or Touki or Parsons or Riley or anyone that’s pitching or hitting well in our vaunted system not being given a shot? If they are waiting for September and expanded rosters then we could be toast by the time that rolls around.

    At least Michael Reed got his first hit of the year. With Kershaw on the mound, it might be a good game to give Ender a day off and let Reed have a start.

  21. Roger, maybe Allard, Touki, Parsons, and Riley are part of ongoing trade discussions and a promotion right now is the wrong thing to do?

  22. @30 That is not credible. You may be right and they may be better trade fodder if they are not on the 40-man, but, again, doing nothing for a week to ten days while you sink in the standings does not show any concern for winning games.

    How about a Wheeler/Cabrera combo with the Shmets? That would fit all the criteria that AA has gamed out. Controllable starter and a good IF bat rental. Someone just needs to figure out what the duo is worth in Braves capital.

    A rotation of Folty, Newk, Wheeler, Fried, and Teheran/Sanchez would not be so bad. I think I’d kinda like that.

  23. Every pitch thrown by Touki in AAA is a criminal waste of resources.

    Are the 25 best players in the system on the MLB Braves? The 20 best? The answer is a resounding no. When that is fixed…then we’re “trying to win”.

  24. Roger, this had been my complaint for the past couple of weeks regarding the total silence by the Braves’ front office going into the break. The Braves entered July and appear poised to exit July in a funk. I’ve fought back feelings that the front office isn’t taking this season very seriously precisely because I feel like they’ve let the team slide for the whole month when it was obvious the bullpen needed repairs.

    Here we are on July 27th. Y’all might as well save the pitch forks for the 31st, because at this point we’ve all waited to see if some deals will be made. What’s a few more days of waiting?

  25. Having Ricardo Sanchez and Adam McCreery on the 40-man without being able to use them has been a real drag on the roster. Would like to see one of them included in whatever big trade gets done. Could we get Wheeler/Cabrera with Wentz or Muller, Demeritte or Cruz, T. Davidson, and R. Sanchez or Peterson or McCreery? I’d gladly throw in Wisler or Sims to balance rosters.

  26. It would probably be in the Braves’ best interests to not discuss the details of their trades publicly. They don’t owe us anything, and everything they would say publicly would only be to potentially gain an advantage in a potential trade. I don’t think you can equate what they’re saying to what they’re doing, and rightfully so.

    I think you can only make an argument that Touki is the only player who is a slam-dunk improvement over the replaced player in the same role. Is Riley good enough to be on a major league roster? Maybe, but he would only replace Flaherty. Flaherty plays about twice a week, and Riley replacing Flaherty has almost no benefit of the team and would be a detriment to Riley. Is he better than Camargo to become the starting 3B? No. At best, it wouldn’t be worth making the switch.

    I’m not sold on Allard nor Parsons as good relievers immediately. The better answer is we only have about 21-22 playoff-caliber players on the roster, but I disagree that you can fill those spots in-house. Hence why Braves Journal has become Trade Journal. And yes, optioning Phillips vs. DFA’ing Moylan is also a criminal offense.

  27. @24–I too am tired of all the posters on this blog who keep saying: “I would rather not win this year if it means our offseason prospect ranking will go up a place or two.”

  28. Ricardo Sanchez not having any sustained success at any level of the minor leagues and occupying a 40-man spot for a year will probably lead to him being DFA’ed in the offseason, I would think. It’s just not working with him, and they’d be running out of time this season to just make him a reliever.

  29. No one, of course.

    Although it does appear we have a few who believe that’s what AA thinks, or are interpreting his “silence” to that effect.

    TAD for GM!

  30. I don’t think anyone has said it, but to pretend that many on BJ aren’t enamored with prospects (and worse, specifically OUR prospects because they are OURS) would be untrue.

    Many on here are prospect mavens. Me, they’re just guys except to their families and their mamas and their daddies. They grew up dreaming to play MLB, not to be Braves farmhands.

  31. The real problem is that Braves Journal’s contingent of PROSPECT TRUTHERS aren’t doing enough to expose how much some of us loooooove prospects.

    If the PROSPECT TRUTHERS did a better job investigating and hitting us harder and more frequently with the TRUTH, it would have a direct and inevitable impact on AA’s actions, after all. Everybody knows the Braves base their decisions on how much commenters love prospects.

    It makes total sense and is entirely right and mature to take out your frustrations with a baseball team you have no control over on other people on the internet. Total sense.

  32. Love the sarcasm going back and forth on here.

    I think the supposed love for the prospects is due to us having paid very dearly to collect them both in terms of losing real cornerstone pieces who should still be here helping us win today as well as by having to endure those awful wasted seasons.

    Y’all know this, but I’ll say it anyway. It’s easy to trade away the top 10. It’s debatable what we get in return (that part is not easy).

  33. Yes, do read the article Sam linked @12 . I feel better about the acumen and ability of a GM who operates with that kind of discipline and focus than a front office that leaks like a sieve.

    I’m still cautiously optimistic that AS will pull off something pretty dramatic. I have no doubt he’s working the phones constantly to do that.

    Now, AA, don’t let me down! I’ll have a hard time showing my face around BJ if you don’t do anything by the deadline.

  34. @20 – By late struggles of Sam Freeman, I think he means late in the game. Basically any time Freeman has come into the game during the 5th inning or later, he has struggled.

  35. “I understand at times it could be frustrating for fans that information isn’t out there,” Anthopoulos says. “But I also know that if I asked every single fan if they felt I had a better chance to make a trade that I thought would help us by being quiet, and I had a worse chance of making the trade if I was transparent and told everybody what our conversations were, I can guarantee what everybody would say: ‘Do whatever you need to do to make the trade to help the team and if you have to be quiet we’ll live with it as long as the product is a good product.”

  36. Guys. GUYS. I have uncovered something HUGE. AA is trying to communicate with us in secret. He wants us to know he’s on our side!!! Check it out:

    “but i also know that if i asked every single fan if they felt i had a better chance to make a trade that i thought would helP us by being quiet, and i had a woRse chance Of making the trade if i was tranSParEnt and told everybody what our ConversaTions were, i can guaranTee what eveRybody woUld say: ‘do whaTever you need to do to make the trade to HElp the team and if you have to be quiet we’ll live with it as long as the pRoduct iS a good product.”

    Now we know. AA wants to win. He’s just being held back by fans who want to hoard prospects. He needs our help!

  37. Tfloyd and Adam R. doing yeoman’s work ITT.

    I’m excited to have Jonny back. May he somehow remain healthy.

  38. I think our comments are helping. AA just can’t just come out and publicly say that he gets most of his strategies from Braves Journal. That would cause a chain reaction and then we end up with enemy agents posting here with disinformation in their hearts, trying to throw AA off the true path. So we just have to accept this unspoken symbiotic pact between us – we all know it’s there, and it’s helping, but we’ll never get any credit. And that’s ok.

  39. 4 days until the deadline. A deal or two will happen.

    Then again – there’s really “nobody” out there who seems to be available and save our season.

  40. I stupidly thought the Braves should and could pick up Greg Holland in Spring Training for a few-to-several million. Cards paid him $14M and now he’s going to be released. So I was wrong twice on the same player. Efficiency.

  41. @27

    It’s more like being pissed off that your team isn’t winning in the eighth inning at this point, but point taken.

  42. My buddy Colin just posted the following, while linking to an article from January about “collusion” and people not signing these valuable free agents. All of the players mentioned here were listed in the article of players who couldn’t find work this winter…

    Greg Holland was just released by the Cardinals. He was one of the offseason poster children for possible collusion within baseball, but it looks like most teams correctly pegged him as old and likely to drop off. Other guys coming off good seasons whose weak market was bemoaned in the offseason include Jayson Werth (685 OPS at AAA), Brandon Phillips (663 OPS at AAA), Eric Hosmer (who still managed to get big bucks and has a 697 OPS), Lance Lynn (5.23 ERA), Alex Cobb (6.08 ERA), Jason Vargas (8.60 ERA, injured), Eduardo Nunez (627 OPS), Neil Walker (594 OPS)

    On the upside Jake Arrieta and Mike Moustakas have posted good, but unspectacular seasons. Of the guys who were still unsigned at the start of the year, though, only Lorenzo Cain and JD Martinez have had really good seasons (and Martinez has been mostly playing DH). Seems like the groupthink of the stathead front offices mostly knew what they were doing.

  43. For the record, I don’t recall seeing much in the way of people not wanting to trade any prospects whatsoever on this site, especially not since the trade deadline got going in earnest.

    It is, however, all over Twitter and Talking Chop and a bunch of other places:

    “It’s clear (as we sit in a current playoff spot) that we just don’t have what it takes to contend this year. Better to hold onto every single one of our prospects than try to actually go to the playoffs in a year where we’re in a playoff spot at the end of July. The ‘plan’ was to not compete this year, so I see no reason why being in a playoff spot late in July should change that. In fact, I’d actually like to see us completely punt on the season and flip Sanchez and Markakis for prospects.”

    Admittedly, if anyone on this site actually thinks that, they haven’t said it that I’ve seen. But you don’t have to go very far afield to find either this exact opinion, or a slightly less extreme one where they don’t include the part about flipping people for prospects but do include everything up to that point.

  44. I don’t want to overpay with prospects, but I do want to see some of them pitch out of the bullpen. Like right now. Not September. We need them now.

  45. I have no problem flipping prospects for help now. I just want that help to help later too. Which is what AA has said he’s looking for as well. I wouldn’t be willing to punt real future talent for two months of a middle reliever. I would be willing to send future talent out for a year and a half of a ML caliber starter.

  46. Phillips optioned. Blech. If Phillips is the worst bullpen member, then fine. But we’re in a pennant race and the FO is concerned about options. Frustrating.

  47. Not sure what Evan Phillips has shown to put himself above anyone, inclusive of Freeman.

  48. @67 Wasn’t there a movie with Sam Freeman – something like “Driving Mr. Anthropolis”? I could swear it was set in Georgia.

  49. @67 Wasn’t there a movie with Sam Freeman – something like “Driving Mr. Anthropolis”? I could swear it was set in Georgia.

  50. @68

    He hasn’t shown anything (possibly because he hasn’t been given a chance to show anything yet), but Freeman has pretty clearly shown that he can’t get the job done, so the only reason to do this is to not have to designate him for assignment…which is a pretty lame reason to keep him on the roster, if you ask me.

    Just heard a radio interview with Mark Bowman where he basically said that he didn’t see the Braves as a playoff team and wonders if the front office feels the same way, and that the team’s lack of apparent interest in Herrera and Britton (and Familia and Hand) make him wonder if, despite what AA told everybody, there really isn’t any money to spend.

    It did not assuage my fear that we’re going to wind up not doing anything of note, to say the least.

  51. @72 Good? I just hope he doesn’t help the Phillies hit another 7 HRs in a game against us. With that move, the Braves become the only playoff contender to not make a significant move. I don’t care what inning we want to sharpen the pitchforks in – the fact remains that every contending team has made a bigger move than we have. I’m all for hoarding our top 10 prospects but there has got to be a deal for a rental that is palatable. Venters is a nice heart warming story but he is not going to move the needle.

    Maybe I’ll feel better if we beat Kershaw or win three in a row from the Machodgers, but, right now, I’m getting that feeling quoted above of “we didn’t want to risk our future to win now”.

    Either AA has lost his nerve or Liberty really is preventing him from making deals. Maybe all that “there is plenty of money to make a deal” was just a mask for there really not being any money allowed for a deal.

  52. The Phils gave up a top 10 prospect from their good farm for Asdrubal. That’s a move.

  53. @76 It definitely looks that way. “Not sure if the Braves agree”. Yeah, sure, Peanut. They told you to say that.

  54. As far as I’m concerned, if we just punt on a potential playoff team this year because it wasn’t part of “the plan,” we’re no better than the Washington Nationals sitting Strasburg down and punting on a potential World Series championship. And if we do that and next year’s team doesn’t turn the corner and make the playoffs for whatever reason (and there could be a lot of them, you can’t just assume that you’re gonna make the playoffs), it would be nothing less than what we deserve.

  55. Things that we won’t have to our detriment next year:

    -$40M in dead weight
    -The ability to spend Kakes’ salary elsewhere
    -Overall youth of the team in some areas
    -Even number Julio Teheran year
    -Bounceback year offensively for Ender?

    Things we may not be able to count on next year:
    -Regardless of how the money is reallocated, we may not be able to match production in RF and catcher
    -Overall relative health of this year’s squad. Most people have stayed on the field.
    -The continued steps forward from several young players. Dansby, Acuna, and several pitchers all need to take steps forward.

    Am I missing anything?

  56. I’ve been a fan and went to my first game in about 1979, but I’m going to give them until next year (seeing this year’s offseason and FA period), and if nothing changes, I’m going to find another hobby. I’ll still be a fan, but the day to day following is going to be stretched thin.


  57. Why would you assume that Peanut is plugged into whatever AA is really thinking? Based on the article Sam linked earlier, he keeps his cards really close to his vest. Peanut is probably as starved for info on this as we are.

    Also, it makes no sense to me that AA would give interviews stating there is flexibility to take on payroll when there really wasn’t. Wouldn’t it be better to set expectations low and possibly surprise postively than set them high and surprise negatively?

  58. @83–agreed. And even if Bowman really is the team’s mouthpiece, why wouldn’t we assume that this is part of a disinformation campaign to increase AA’s leverage?

    (Once again, AA, I’m out on a limb for you here. Get it done!)

  59. Bowman has no idea what AA is doing. Neither do either of the former AJC (now Athletic) guys. There is no “state media” anymore. You guys need new talking points.

    If a failure to put together a big deadline deal this season is enough to send you pack, well, bye Felicia.

  60. It would make no sense for AA to come out and say the Braves want to make deals with no intention or ownership approval to make any. We may end up doing very little in the trade market but if that happens it will be because we don’t want to part with A prospects and we are over valuing B and C prospects.

  61. Whether he is a “mouthpiece” or not, it’s Bowman’s attempt to prime the pump for it a big deal is not made. He’s at least softening the blow.

    With that said, AA has said many things alluding to a move, and once again, he doesn’t owe us a play-by-play, and Sam’s link articulates that clearly.

  62. I felt sort of bad earlier. Some people on here were attacking other commenters even though my impression was we all actually agree — some of us may value prospects more than others, but everyone is willing to trade them and everyone would be disappointed if there were no trade to help the team before the deadline. It was that mentality of lashing out at people who fundamentally agree with you, like anyone’s love of any prospect is what’s holding up the show somehow, that I was poking fun at.

    But now I say: attacking Sam is fair game. Sam = state media :)

  63. Took the only strike of the at-bat.

    Put the ball in play when they needed to though.

  64. @81, You just can’t bank on Folty or Newcomb not backsliding. Look at how long other teams’ rotations stay intact. Pitching is volatile.

  65. Okay Chief, you have a point. The Braves need help. My boy’s are in freefall. Come on, AA; do something significant.

  66. Pitching not consistent enough .. and Snit is determined to go with sane order in batting .. this game at 4-1 is over….. going over and watch the NL. East champs … play the Reds ….

  67. Maybe our new acquisition can pitch tonight… our 3 1/2 time TJ surgery guy .. Phil’s add a player…a hitter .. Braves add a guy who’s arm is about to fall off ..

  68. If Mark Bowman doesn’t see this team as a playoff team… there aren’t any kind words for me to use here. I’m done reading his stuff. I’m done with him.

    Your team was sitting in first place at an important season milestone and you go on record saying that?

    And the Braves pay him?

  69. I said that in a month (about two weeks ago) that this team would be closer to 4th than it would be to 1st. The Braves are well on their way to that.

  70. Anyone notice that the big blow was by Kershaw? He has a walk and a 2-run single tonight. That is what has the game out of hand so far. The Braves have the worst hitting pitchers in the league. I may have to get back on the “sign Kershaw” boat for this offseason. We could get Kershaw for just money and zero prospects.

    Still any winning team should be supported by the FO. This is very disappointing that our FO refuses to do so while spewing pablum and contradictions in the press. I don’t care how reserved Don Anthropolis is.

  71. @101

    He’s not an official team mouthpiece, and I’m guessing his check comes from MLBAM and not the Braves directly, if that makes you feel any better. I don’t think he’s ever likely to venture too far from team talking points, though.

  72. Well, the Braves look deflated, I feel deflated, and I hope someone lets an awful fart rip in Bowman’s next Uber he rides in, and I hope it has a long ride through downtown Atlanta during rush hour.

  73. Awesome to see Everyday Jonny back in Atlanta. His inning looked good. I think it is a requirement for a Braves reliever to walk at least one. Why isn’t Reed getting more chances? He’s hit the ball hard in just about every at bat.

  74. @106 I just can’t believe [that] guy would say something like that about his team when it was in first place less than a week ago… not unless it was on a script that he had to read from.

    It doesn’t make any sense to me.

    There are so many more things I could say, but you all know how I feel.

    Nick, what were his actual words? You said he basically said the above.

  75. I don’t see this team as a playoff team either. But AA still has to go to Michigan and Wisconsin. You can’t give your fans the middle finger.

  76. @99

    Please Tad, for the love of God, turn into the Marc Schneider of the Phillies! That would be so hilarious I can’t even fathom!

  77. @110

    The direct quote was, “I’m just not sure this is a playoff team,” said in a tone where it was very clear that he didn’t think it was. That was presented as his opinion and not necessarily that of the Braves, though as I said, he did at least imply that he wondered if the front office thought the same (I can’t remember the direct quote on that part).

  78. Well, ugh.

    I don’t see exactly see this as a strong playoff contender, but then neither have a quarter of the world series winners in the past 30 years. Oh, IMO. But I wonder if those organizations felt the same way.

    I’m gonna put a cork in it before I start spewing a lot of negativity. All I can do is shake my head and long for the good ol’ days.

  79. We need a bat or two, two starting pitchers, and a bunch of relievers, if we want to be on equal footing with the elite teams. The good news is that we can still get in and cause some trouble even if we’re not exactly “elite”.

    I actually still think the bats are more of a concern than the pitching. We’re scoring a couple runs a night quite often in this bad stretch.

  80. At the very least, I think this is a serious indictment of our front office’s ability to alter their strategy a bit when the situation calls for it, if it continues to go down like this. If you can’t bring yourself to change it up a bit a half-year early to help a potential playoff team because you didn’t think that it was going to be as competitive as it has been, that’s a major dereliction of duty.

  81. The Phuckin’ Phillies are in exactly the same boat as us and they made a big move for a good bat which is exactly what they needed and they made a play for Machado. And the main indictment of the difference between the two teams is that the Phillies have lots of money to spend, So that must mean that the Braves don’t have any money to spend. They went in for a rental and didn’t break the bank or the farm to do it.

  82. Guys ought to take a gander at the box score over at Rays vs. Orioles. Archer down 4-2 against the worst hitting team in the majors. Typical Archer start for what I have seen. He has never inspired me with much confidence.

  83. Brewers are “in” on Gausman and Schoop possible combo. Wouldn’t that be exactly what AA says he’s looking for? SP and IF bat that are controllable? Why aren’t the Braves in on that too. At least up the ante and make the Brewers spend more.

  84. Just call up reinforcements and you’ll only be trading away a year of the prospects at worst.

    It’d be fun to watch.

  85. In AA’s defense, our play in July is not screaming “go for it”. This is the team the projections were…projecting.

    But once you have a taste of it, it’s hard to give up on it. I don’t want to give up.

  86. If they aren’t going to make any moves, I’d at least like to see some dead wood removed and replaced BY the prospects. Replace Flaherty with Riley, etc. Leave Reed up, Bring up Allard and Gohara etc.

    Not a whole lot of interest in watching the chaff on this roster for another half season.

  87. @123 Phillies were 13-14 in June. That was sure screaming for it.

    The Braves had been very consistently good all season until July when the bullpen became a glaring problem.

    The front office chose to let the bullpen deflate the team’s momentum.

    When you’re a team the GM didn’t plan for, expect to be abandoned at the first sign of imperfection.

  88. Hey, does anyone think the Braves might be getting blacklisted in trade talks because of Coppy’s past sins in pissing everyone off?

  89. @127, seriously? Almost of all of these trades are rentals for prospects. It’s pretty clear that AA is reluctant to spend prospect capital on rentals. He wants to improve the club this year and next year (at least). There are going to be fewer of these types of deals available, and they are more difficult to negotiate.

  90. @129 I dunno. Seems like a lot of controllable relievers and hitters have been traded. The Brewers just traded out their #10 as part of the Moose deal. Both of the players traded to the Royals have already been in the majors.

    The Braves are the ONLY contender not to make a significant trade this summer – so far. It’s either unwillingness, incompetence, or some sort of collusion. If what they said about how Coppy handled deals is correct, he pissed off a hell of a lot of other GMs. We may be feeling some of the fallout for how the organization acted over the last three years.

    Rejecting reasonable rental deals is just as incompetent as not being able to seal a deal for controllable players. Markakis is a pretty good rental this year. McCarthy was a one year rental. We traded a “controllable” player (Kemp) for several rentals. Moylan was a one year rental. Venters is a rental, too. On the other hand, Sam Freeman has several years of control. All this “no rental” talk is insane.

    I get the strangest feeling that the Venters deal was a pity deal.

  91. @131

    So they take it out on AA? Makes no sense. It’s very obviously some combination of unwillingness and incompetence.

    If this trade deadline comes and goes without anything happening BTW, perhaps we should start talking about why in the hell anyone would believe that this front office is going to do anything remotely extravagant during the offseason. It’ll cost prospects and money, and AA refuses to spend one while Liberty Media refuses to spend the other.

  92. I think the reality is we need several things.

    It’s disappointing, but I think that’s just how it is.

    I experienced a half-day of frustration, but for whatever reason, when I thought about it this morning it made more sense to me. The Braves were in first place, but it does seem unlikely that we will stay close enough to first that spending a number of prospects on enough rentals to be confident we could stay in first place is worth it — when we could include those same prospects in deals for longer-term pieces. It’s not that first place isn’t worth it. It’s more that it would actually cost a lot, given what this team needs.

    I think if our circumstances were different and this was the closing of our competitive window (as opposed to now, which is more the opening of the window), we’d be trading prospects for rentals.

  93. Our stated goal is to improve this year and the future with any major deal we make. That is a higher standard than most other teams have. If we miss out on this goal I’ll be disappointed, but I won’t lose confidence in ownership. It would be much worse, to make short sighted deals, which some teams are doing. If we don’t make any major moves by the start of next year, then my confidence in the FO will wane.

    All that being said, at least let the trade deadline pass before calling the FO incompetent idiots. AA has a decent track record and has never been afraid to make deals. Saying that he’s now become a risk averse figurehead all of the sudden is crazy. Saying that owners don’t want to deal with him because of a grudge against former leadership is even crazier.

  94. “We’re really going to be good next year. Just wait and see.”

    The club can’t keep selling this line through its actions to fans who went from Loserville, USA, to 14 straight division titles (yes, only one WS which still frustrates me to this day) to some weird tap dance where the team hovers around mediocrity…always just (insert random number) seasons away until they are really good.

    I think Roger, Nick, and Chief all agree with what I’m saying, and we seem to be the minority. Look, I’m 40 years old and fight a chronic disease. Time is something I don’t take for granted. It’s pretty sad that the Florida Marlins won two World Series titles in the same time that the Braves won only one. Of course I want to see them do more to win, and it’s insulting to those of us (especially Braves fans) who pay Cobb County property taxes only to see nothing getting done to try to win now. Liberty can afford it. Vent over.

  95. Like, if we did a poll asking what this team needs in order to make sure we’re in the playoffs, I bet the answers would be all over the place.

  96. @137:

    That’s a requirements vs. capabilities assessment that should be done by those in charge, and they are responsible for finding the delta and making moves to get those pieces if they aren’t already in the system. I’m also not sure the answers are “all over the place.” There seems to be a pretty good consensus here. Somehow, I personally don’t think a guy who’s had his elbow worked on four times checks that box.

  97. I would expect to see the answers scattered among the following options, with no clear plurality:
    – we’re a starter away
    – we’re a reliever away
    – we’re a big bat away
    – we need a starter and a reliever
    – we need a bat and a reliever
    – we need a starter and a bat
    – we need a starter, a reliever, and a bat
    – we need even more than the option above
    – we don’t need to trade for anything

    If you wanted to be certain to win the NL East, I think you’d have to vote for the third to the bottom option.

  98. Maybe it’s worth saying: not spending significantly before the deadline means I don’t just expect some trades and signings in the offseason.

    If we’re going to hold all our chips now and forego whatever chance at the playoffs in 2018, then we need to be fielding an absolute juggernaut of a team going into 2019.

  99. I’m over it … I’m not even gonna comment on Moustakus …. got to wonder how the players who want to win now are taking this. I think we can already see in effort and attitude…. see ya next year…

  100. Moustakas isn’t an upgrade for this team. I sort of doubt Asdrubal Cabrera would’ve been an upgrade. I’m as skeptical of Zach Britton as an outside observer can be, which is worth what you’re paying to read this opinion.

    Familia/Soria/Pressly, Eduardo Escobar, and of course Machado would’ve been upgrades. Probably Hamels too. If the same prospects that we would’ve spent on these players help us to get a controllable asset in the winter, fine. But now it needs to happen.

  101. We need 5 or more players to really finish this roster. I dont expect that to happen in the next 3 days, or in August. I just want to see *one* of the pieces put in places.

  102. From a core perspective, this is going to be the same team in November as it is now (unless like Touki gets called up and pitches his face off in the second half or something). I’m really not sure what makes now borderline unsalvageable and then the right moment. This team is good ahead of schedule, so convert to the final phase ahead of schedule.

    Also, we’d better hope our expected wins don’t come out as too low next offseason, lest the FO and a significant portion of the fanbase jump ship on next year before it starts and declare 2020 the “actual” year. Because it’s not the play on the field that counts, it’s what’s projected.

  103. This is all getting far too technical and complex. Concentrate instead on something that actually happened last night on which we can agree.

    Colorman Joe
    from thin air that innocent unintended bon mot
    shaving references by gender
    he now understands can only offend her.

  104. I’m really not sure what makes now borderline unsalvageable and then the right moment.

    It’s not us. It’s the other teams that have what we need.

    They’re not going to trade with us now because I imagine they think they’re going to get more if they wait until the offseason.

    (That’s why we’re not spending prospects on rentals. We know prices are about to go up.)

  105. One could argue that we’ll also have more holes to fill next year than we do right this moment.

    I mean I damn sure didn’t predict we’d have the best RF in the league in 2018, but we do, and he’s unlikely to be back next season (and if he *is* brought back there will be gnashing of teeth).

    Our catching tandem looks like it’s getting long in the tooth.

    Anibal Sanchez is a free agent.

    There’s more work to do “then” than “now”.

  106. The deadline is about trading rental players. Teams that are out of contention can shed their contracts and rebuild to whatever extent they need to. Teams that are in contention can pay a premium to get over the hump.

    It’s not like players with more team control aren’t available, but they’re going to cost more and if you’re just trying to help yourself this year, that’s an unnecessary expense.

    We’re not just trying to help ourselves this year, see @149.

    This offseason, when the choice for teams looking to upgrade becomes “overpay for a premium FA” or trade, and when there are more bidders for players with control, that’s going to drive up demand and the price you can get teams to pay for your controllable assets to trade (vs right now).

    If I were the Jays or Rays, I would be waiting and not trading Stroman or Archer. Especially Stroman, who is probably having as bad a year as he is capable of having, results-wise.

    Maybe we could offer enough now to change other GMs’ minds. But I suspect these GMs know they’re sure to get a haul if it’s not the Braves in the mix. There’s not much risk in them waiting, unless Stroman/Archer get injured.

    We’re basically betting that we’re better off keeping our prospects to beat other teams’ proposals in the offseason. That is a bet that is not without considerable risk. The Braves are not maximizing the potential of this season. They’re risking fan loyalty — like, who could be expected to sit down and try and see it from their perspective? There’s no guarantee that this plan will work because after all this, another team can outbid us. It’s crazy, and yet it also is probably the best course of action.

    Could be wrong and probably am, but that’s my read as of this moment.

  107. @144.. of course Moustakus and Cabrera would have been upgrades at 3B …you crazy .. u trying to equate…our 3B to those guys.. REALLY.. that’s a joke ….

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