Mets 6, Braves 3

I know IWOTM, but they must have been reading their “Weaver on Strategy.”  Five of the Mets’ runs scored by a three run homer in the second (two walks followed by a blast) and a two run homer in the seventh (a walk followed by a blast).  Their other run was on three straight singles with two outs in the sixth.

Kevin Gausman started for the Braves and went five and two thirds, giving up four runs.  He actually pitched pretty well; the only hits he gave up were the three run dinger in the second, two of those three singles in the sixth, and a leadoff single in the fifth that he managed to pitch around. The killer was the mini-episode in the second, when he somehow lost the strike zone in walking the first two batters of the inning.  You knew that would come back to bite, and sure enough Ahmed Rosario followed one batter later with a blast to right center.  As I say, other than that little stretch, I thought Gausman was pretty sharp (“Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln…”).  Wes Parsons came on after the two singles in the sixth, and he allowed a run scoring single to the aforementioned Rosario.  Jonny Venters started the seventh, and he opened that inning with his own two batter episode, walking Nimmo on four straight pitches and then allowing Pete Alonso to absolutely crush a ball to straightaway center.  It looked like it was still rising when it hit the waterfall.  I love Venters, and I know it’s early, but he’s beginning to remind me of EOF when the Braves brought him back after several years.  Nostalgia doesn’t get hitters out.

Those six runs were more than enough, thanks to a strong outing by Steven Matz. In the first he gave up a double to Freddie followed by a triple to center by Acuña.  The only other run he gave up was a line drive homer to left by Camargo.  After that, he was pretty much unhittable, striking out 8 through six with only one walk.  The Braves had their chances against the Mets’ pen, loading up the bases with one out in the seventh.  Ozzie Albies came to the plate with the Braves down 4 as the potential tying run.  (By the way, I heard that earlier in the day he may have signed a contract extension; y’all may wish to discuss in the comments).  Unfortunately, Ozzie still has a weakness for the high fastball, especially batting lefty; he swing through one and struck out.  Donaldson ended the inning by grounding out.

I mentioned the Mets young star Alonso and his prodigious blast in the seventh.  Well, we have a young power hitting star of our own.  When Ronald came to the plate in the eighth, he said to Alonso, “I see your blast to the waterfall; now watch this,” and promptly hit one into the swimming pool at the Omni Hotel.  To be truthful, it may not have actually landed in the pool, but it did go over 460 feet in that direction.  The Braves brought the tying run to the plate again in the ninth, and it looked like they may have some more of their ninth inning magic, but the mighty Freddie struck out.

A couple of broadcast notes: Tom Glavine was in the booth with Chip. On Camargo’s home run, Glavine pointed out that he hit a fastball that was right down the middle.  Of course Glavine noted that, because he never in his long HOF career threw a fastball down the middle of the plate. Glavine was quite critical of the modern trend of emphasizing velocity over location.  (Apparently the laws of physics do not allow one to have certainty as to both; remember Heisenberg?)  As we all know, Glavine was the master of location.  He was an outstanding pitcher for over twenty years because he had excellent fastball command.  Glavine walked his share of batters—at least compared to Maddux.  But what he never did, under any circumstances, was to throw a fastball over the heart of the plate.  Glavine also credited Matz’s strong performance to his relying more on the changeup than a breaking ball to right handed batters.  Again, that’s what Tom did.  Fastballs that don’t hit 90 just off the outside corner and changeups also just outside.  That was pretty much his entire repertoire—and it worked for a couple of decades. 

It made me wonder whether a pitcher like Glavine could be successful today.  A lot of folks say no, because umps today would not give him the strike call a few inches off the plate. But if Dan Bellino was calling the game, Glavine could still get people out.  Bellino rung up both Culberson and Camargo in the eighth on balls that were several inches off the plate (he also had a strike call on Charlie on a check swing that wasn’t close to being a swing).  It was so bad that Snit got ejected (good for him).  The funny thing was that Glavine was highly critical of the ump, noting correctly that those pitches were plainly off the plate.  Without getting those calls himself, would Glavine have been who he was?

The two teams are back at it tonight.  Wright vs. Wheeler.  I’ve got a feeling young Kyle is going to throw a gem.  Of course Wheeler is awfully good.  If their starting pitchers don’t get hurt, this Mets team could be for real.  It’s going to be a great pennant race among four teams.

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.

65 thoughts on “Mets 6, Braves 3”

  1. JC’d
    @ 207 Alex, previous threat:
    Behind the Braves – Alex Anthopoulos via @mlb

    It is a podcast (You’ll find it on Google Podcasts for example: “Behind the Braves”) and the latest inteview/episode.

    I was impressed about AA’s candidness on making all those mistakes in the past with the Blue Jays, making deals and getting players just for the sake of it and to please the fanbase. He claims to have learned from those mistakes.
    In my POV, this is an excellent insight in how he operates and thinks. I loved it.

  2. @4, It was hit so hard that it made Acuna’s smash look lightweight in comparison.

    Looking at the replay of Alonso’s homer again, it’s astonishing to see the ball splashing into the pond seemingly milliseconds after it left the bat.

  3. four six two
    there are not that many like me and you
    who got to see this epiphany
    can I get to see him on an occasional basis said Tiffany?

  4. Moonshots you know, they appeal to the romantic in us.

    tfloyd Rocking ruminations on a fine game.

  5. 1 out of 5 people believe the moon landing was fake. Yet they all get to vote. It’s very disturbing.

  6. I wasn’t able to watch the game as closely. Was the strike zone as bad as some on Twitter were saying?

  7. I thought it was a little wide, but that it was pretty consistent. I didn’t see a reason for a big hubbub.

    Twitter complaints about the strike zone kind of go in one ear and out the other for me, at this point, though. I’m 100 percent on-board for the electronic strike zone, but we don’t have that right now, so it’s just going to change from umpire to umpire and night to night…like, that’s how human beings work.

    I also suspect that a significant portion of the people looking at the Pitchfx chart so they can complain about the strike zone every night would not be in favor of the electronic strike zone, and I just have no idea what those people even want or expect, other than to have the ability to bitch about the strike zone every night.

  8. The only time I have any real issue with the strike zone is when it’s not fairly called for both teams. Last night was an example of where the opposing pitcher was clearly getting the calls on one side of the plate and occasionally on the other side too. As long as it’s consistent, that’s really all I care about.

    I’m not sure how much I would appreciate the electronic strike zone. I’m already of the belief that they need to expand the strike zone. There’s no benefit to making it smaller, IMO.

  9. Thanks. So you don’t think we were getting squeezed (5 walks between Gausman and Venters) or the zone was inconsistently big for us (14 K’s)? I think that’s probably where the strike zone complainers were thinking that we were getting hosed. I thought we’d kill another lefty, and 14 K’s is not that. I guess they just want to blame the umpire.

  10. The borderline calls they gave Familia were like an inch off the plate. Nothing too egregious. Kinda funny to hear Glavine complaining.

    The only horrid call was the check swing that resulted in Snitker getting tossed.

  11. The zone was tight (but not squeezed) on the batter side, and loose (but not super wide) on the outside half. Flipped with batter’s handedness. Both starters got the same calls from my seat on the couch. Matz never lost the zone entirely and was constantly around the edges. The “episode” by Gaus was pretty egregious and he wasn’t terribly close on much of anything.

    I bailed at 4-2 when they brought Venters in, just due to having adult responsibilities in the AM. Didn’t see the check swing.

  12. Matz or Fried, who has the better stuff?

    A year from now will Max be his equal?

    would you swap them now if offered?

  13. I think if we had robo umps we’d also have lots of 20-15 games. The strike-zone randomness of the human umps hurts the batter more than the pitcher.

    I’d still love to see them test-drive it in the minors for a month or two though. Maybe it’ll be more balanced than I’m guessing.

  14. The interesting question is how pitching and batting strategy would change with robo umps. I don’t think we know much about that, other than that Greg Maddux would be even better, I suspect, and Tom Glavine would have gone to the NHL.

  15. @23

    I think you may be largely right with the notable exception of breaking balls that hit the low-outside (and to a lesser extent low-inside) corner of the zone. That pitch is completely unhittable and pitchers almost never get the call on it because the catcher catches it ankle-high. If they suddenly started getting the call on it, it would basically be an automatic strike if they could hit the spot.

  16. There’s a chance it could balance out for sure. I also think human umps miss the high strike consistently, on both sides of the plate.

    But once batters get used to a consistent zone, they’ll lock in and rake. Walks will go up, and games will be longer.

  17. The end of “catcher framing” being a thing that folks blabber about constantly would IMO be among the most welcome effects of robo umps.

  18. @21


    I’m struggling a bit with your reply, could you please elaborate? thanks.

    Who is like Cal Ripken, which one?

    In what way, durability?

  19. @10/11

    Priceless line from Sam, very funny. An example, Sam, that when you don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater every time, you score.

    Alex…got it, thanks.

  20. I’ve just had to listen to some of the stupid commentary on MLB Network Radio about the Albies extension. I can’t remember what the name of the main afternoon guy is after Russo, but that guy has never missed an opportunity to rail on baseball ownership. And his positions are so inconsistent, it boggles my mind:

    -Has no problem with the Bryce Harper deal, even though Bryce Harper took a significantly lower AAV than LA was offering and instead chose more guaranteed money and certainty.
    -Mentions Adam Jones and Markakis as players who took less than they were worth, yet seems to never mention Patrick Corbin as someone who got more money than most people predicted. Also fails to acknowledge players like Martin Maldonado who turned down a higher offer only to accept another.
    -Thinks the agent screwed over Albies, yet while acknowledging that he has the same agent as Francisco Lindor, doesn’t connect the dot that the agent wouldn’t want to screw over Albies with Lindor approaching free agency.
    -Doesn’t have a problem with Acuna’s extension even though Acuna left a lot of money on the table himself.

    I guess it’s hard thinking about something to yack about for 3 hours every day.

  21. Ryan Doumit

    Alex’s penchant for dredging up the forgotten past doesn’t always make for the most pleasant experience!

  22. @35 I think we’re going to see some heart-breaking trades of players we’ve grown to love in the 2021-2022 offseason.

  23. I’ve just had to listen to some of the stupid commentary on MLB Network Radio about the Albies extension.

    No you didn’t.

  24. Well, by 2022, you’re right, we may be ready to bid bon voyage to Ender if Waters, Acuna, and Pache turn into what we think they are. And on the pitching side, same with Julio. But with Folty being an upcoming FA, that could be a hard decision. Same with Gausman. And hey, FF5 will be a FA so who knows.

  25. I bet FF5 will work something out with the team. We already know his intentions are to play here for his entire career.

    With Folty and Gausman, I don’t worry about it because it’ll probably work itself out. I just hope of both of them is good this year and next.

  26. I’ve heard there are a couple more extensions on the table but no mention of who. I expect one will be Dansby Swanson. The other could be Freddie, but it just seems unnecessary for the moment.

    I’d be surprised if the other is a pitcher.

  27. 1. They have smartly extended only position players so far.

    2. They still haven’t dealt any of their 7000 A+ to B- pitching prospects.

    3.Swanson and Freddie are the likeliest next extended. Maybe Camargo. Folty and Newcomb haven’t earned a bit extension yet, and TINSTAAPP.

  28. 1. They have smartly extended only position players so far.

    And this is why it was weird for Albies to accept an extension at this value. He clearly accepted a deal akin to the risk level you’d expect with a pitcher. He has agreed to be financially considered as risky as a pitcher. He’s not an idiot, his agent didn’t steamroll him, the Braves are not nefarious… but why did he do it?

    EVEN if you wanted to play the game that he’s not confident, we all know how the Moneyball scouts taught us definitively to determine that: see if his girlfriend is good looking. She’s hot! So that’s clearly not the issue either. Does he look like a guy that doesn’t think he has something elite to offer planet Earth?

  29. She’s clearly the breadwinner.

    This isn’t the thrust of the piece, but I found it interesting:

    “Every time the teams see a seam in the defense, they exploit the shit out of it and they are really good at it,” the agent said. “They are capitalizing on good players they have been watching through the draft, through the minor leagues, and who are represented largely by unqualified or under-qualified agents. The teams have scouting reports on agents the very same way they have on opposing hitters and pitchers. They have heat maps. They know our tendencies, they know who will go to arbitration, who won’t, whose business is failing and they need to vest their fees.”

  30. That doesn’t surprise me at all. I had expected it ever since teams began avoiding Scott Boras clients. Seems only natural that teams would feel the same way as fans about certain agents.

    But I’ve said this once, and I’ll say it again: Ronald Acuna has a very good team of agents behind him. I believe Ozzie Albies does too. As someone on some other site suggested, either they actually flubbed up badly, which isn’t like them at all, or if Ozzie insisted on accepting the deal they should cut ties with him because he cost them a good chunk of change.

    I disagree with that stance, but I do think Albies really wanted to accept the deal. It’s the only way it happens.

    And granted this has little to do with the extensions, I feel like bringing it up. Greg Maddux left money on the table to sign with the Braves. He could have gotten more to sign elsewhere.

  31. Damn, Gameday had Kyle up to 98 in the first. That’s a few ticks higher than normal.

  32. @51 There’s probably enough evidence to safely say Ender is a slow starter. Nothing wrong with that, except he should be hitting in the bottom third of the order for awhile, until he gets going.

  33. This has the possibility of getting out of hand quickly with Wheeler throwing like he is

  34. Kyle’s the next one down but Soroka’s not doing so great at Gwinnett tonight. I guess it’s up to Newk tomorrow to prove that he’s the one that belongs in the rotation.

  35. I wish they’d admit that Inciarte just is not going to start fast. Bat him low (just like mentioned above) until he starts hitting.

    Tomlin is looking pretty good. Sometimes the soft tossers do better against FB hitters…..

  36. Didn’t Andruw even fire his agent and negotiate himself to give the Braves a big hometown discount back in the day?

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