Today’s pitching matchup, Pablo Lopez vs. Ian Anderson favors the Braves in many of the categories that matter, and even those that don’t matter:
- ERA: Ian, 1.95 vs. Pablo, 3.61
- BB/9: Ian, 3.9 vs. Pablo, 2.8
- K/9: Ian, 11.4 vs. Pablo, 9.2
- FIP/xFIP: Ian, 2.54/3.45 vs. Pablo, 3.09/3.73
Needless to say, it’s the Braves to lose and I’m still expecting a series sweep.
Ronald AcuÃ±a Jr. Apologizes to Nobody
Yesterday, Ronald Acuna Jr. deposited a leadoff HR into the RCF stands, and next AB, was greeted by a hit by pitch which could’ve gotten ugly. After the game, Sandy Alcantara had this to say about the situation:
From there, AcuÃ±a took to social media with a pic of his first inning HR batflip with the caption, “I’d like to take this time to apologize to absolutely nobody”. This statement received a lot of support from many players around the league including Fernando Tatis Jr.and Bryce Harper, but one player that was vocal in his support might surprise Braves fans:
And while MLB is slow to support and promote their own players, Rotowear, which is officially licensed gear of the MLBPA, loves branding individuality of the players.
A Brave Sets a Postseason Record
While Marcel Ozuna receives all the press, Travis d’Arnaud might be the best Braves signing of the 2020 season considering he’ll be around for 2021 as well. He was the dagger in the heart of the Marlins last night and set a record for catchers in the postseason:
I’ll not post the lineup since it’s in the header, but let’s see the boys put the Marlins in their places and remind them that they’re just not that good.
This is great!
JC’ed from last thread:
Exactly. And whatâ€™s most troubling is that Alcantaraâ€™s fastball velocity yesterday (97.5 MPH) matches Urenaâ€™s first fastball that hit Acuna. Youâ€™re exactly right; they are clearly trying to put their best fastball on his hip. For the people that donâ€™t want to find a definitive, albeit too aggressive, way to put a stop to it, how are you going to feel when one of their max-effort fastballâ€™s sails a little and hits him in the temple? The way I see it, there are only so many ways to stop it:
-Talk about it publicly. That hasnâ€™t worked.
-Complain to the umpires. That hasnâ€™t worked.
-Hit a guy on the butt. Weâ€™ve tried this, and that hasnâ€™t worked.
-Benches-clearing brawl. Weâ€™ve not tried that yet, and Iâ€™m not opposed to that. One of these pencil-necked Marlins pitchers needs to catch a fist from the biggest guy on our team. Whereâ€™s Kyle Farnsworth when you need him? And I would make it very deliberate: when the benches clear, you find every single pitcher still on the Marlins that has hit Acuna, accident or otherwise, and you pummel the crap out of him. And donâ€™t hit anyone else. And then tell the media after the game what you did, take your punishments, and move on.
-Put one in a guyâ€™s earhole. Weâ€™ve not tried this, thank goodness, but this is something that probably puts a stop to it pretty quickly. And the reality is that, despite your best effortâ€™s, you probably canâ€™t even hit the guy in the head. So it either hits him high on the back or sails over his head. Either way, message sent.
I am one billion percent opposed to a bench-clearing brawl during the age of COVID. We would be publicly pilloried and rightly so, and the suspensions from the league office would be justifiably draconian.
@1, that is glorious. His nickname is permanent.
When I did the series, Braves Incoming vs. Outgoing value, I came away with an appreciation for what Anthopoulos had done overall on the free agent market. While Cole Hamels was a miserable fail, AA still needs to be praised for his overall work in 2020.
Here in the playoffs, he’s kind of just gonna have to wear it right now. The only thing we can do is what we did yesterday. We can’t afford to get into a big brawl in the playoffs. Maybe get into the umpires’ ears to make sure they know the deal and maximize the chances that they run the next pitcher who does it in this series right then and there, but that’s about all you can do other than punishing them on the field.
Next year, the first time they do it, I would not be opposed to him charging the mound. We’d lose him for up to a week, but if we’re back to playing 162 and we’re talking about early May or something, it might be worth it at some point.
The RAJ t-shirt is fantastic. Just ordered one.
Pablo Lopez is a good pitcher but our offense is better. Go Braves!
And yes, focus on the game, use your energy and “anger” on the field and make them pay that way. It’s so much sweeter in the long run.
Also, @2, obviously you may disagree, but I personally don’t think the Braves have actually talked about it publicly that much. The Urena incident received national attention, but the other HBP didn’t, until yesterday afternoon. Finally, national baseball writers are starting to talk about it as a trend. To me, I think the Braves should keep the spotlight on the Marlins â€”Â tell everyone to watch their behavior, and judge for themselves if the Marlins are actually playing baseball, or if they’re trying to play the game like hockey goons.
Apply a little more sustained public scrutiny, and the question doesn’t just answer itself, it puts the Marlins exactly where they belong in the court of public opinion. Before yesterday, everyone thought they were a plucky bunch of scrappers and a fun little story. Keep up the scrutiny, and people outside Atlanta will finally see them for what they are.
@8 I do agree that they could definitely do more to put the spotlight on the Marlins. And by doing so, it would get in every pitcher’s head that pitching inside might create more problems, and that definitely helps our offense. I agree with the talking heads on the broadcast that losing the ability to pitch inside because Alcantara did something stupid really put unnecessary pressure on the pitching.
And yes, I agree that you don’t do anything in the playoffs. They’ve already shot themselves in the foot by losing the inner half, so let’s beat them like a drum this series and then deal with it next year. But if they do it again, God help whoever ends up paying for the Marlins’ stupidity.
Stark has a good piece in his column today about it and while Ronald may not have personally made the Marlins pay after a HBP, Atlanta has outscored Miami 24-4 in the games where Acuna was hit after the HBP in question.
I’d say it’s not been a winning strategy for them.
So that hurricane is still out there and there’s still a chance it could affect this series on Friday. It’s not expected to go right over Houston (though the chances are not completely zero on that), but low-level tropical storm force winds on Friday wouldn’t be particularly surprising. Obviously there is a roof, so I don’t know how bad it would have to be for them to postpone a potential Game 4.
Or we could just win in three and get the hell out of there.
@10 Love it. Come on Pablo, hit Ronnie tonight.
I really donâ€™t want that to happen as we may see a brawl, and while Iâ€™m all in on that normally, Iâ€™m all out on that when it comes to the postseason and COVID.
@13 Yes agree, was actually just kidding.
If we were scoring innings like boxing rounds, the first would’ve been 10-9 Marlins…maybe Adam Wainwright’s hockey momentum is a thing.
And yes, I am joking.
DANSBAE HAS AWAKENED
Beautiful work by Ian to get his pitch count in a more reasonable spot.
How fun is Ian Anderson to watch. Man oh man.
Ummmm the ump screwed up, Duvall actually should’ve gone to first on a BB. Why did absolutely NO ONE catch his mistake?
A wretched at-bat by Riley there.
A wretched at-bat by Acuna there.
Remember when Anderson was labeled a bust while still in AAA in part because of his low spin rates? Heh.
TRAVIS THAT BALL HAD A FAMILY!
TDA banging the gong!
In October 82, Paul Kurtz brought a portable TV for a Braves game (the first “official” game of the series with the Cards, as I remember). You couldn’t be as good as Paul?
Well, 77 pitches thru 5 IP w/o a scratch so far… Ian’s humming right along
Life ain’t supposed to be this easy for a freshman. Nobody better tell him.
Would have never thought I’d enjoy listening to Joe Simpson. He is actually nice to listen to on the radio feed.
Pretty sure the D’Arnaud ball could have landed in Dallas with a clear path
Never seen Anderson pitch until this evening. The one word that comes to mind is languid. Makes it look effortless. Reminds me of Tim Hudson in a good way
Go Braves. This is fun to follow
Professional K there from Neck.
I’d love to hear someone make a case of Nick over Pache.
It seems the marlins got into Ronalds head.
And this inane broadcast is getting into my head; it is nearly equal to Arod commentary.
That was a helluva battle there with Aguilar…
Nice work, Ian!
Good move, Snit. Great game, Ian Anderson!
@26â€“Iâ€™m certainly not in Paul Kurtzâ€™s league.
1982, as you know, was only the second time the ATL Braves had ever been in the playoffs. The first time, in 1969, I was in 9th grade. My science teacher brought in a tv to show a game against the Mets. He made us promise not to tell the principal.
@35 I would hold off on the “good move” until oday gets out of this…..
The 3 batter minimum rule is coming to screw us
Whew, thank you, double agent matt joyce.
And nice jinx, Eephus
Oh No. Joyce will 100% hit a grand slam off of O’Day if he faces him.
Yeah, I’m not a big fan of the move. And it’s playing out poorly, as well.
Ahem. Good move. Whew…
Ian Andersonâ€™s post-season stats, so far:
11.2 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 3 BB, 17 K
@43 I’ll allow it!
Bullpen has not exactly been blowing folks away so far, but they’ve gotten the job done. Some add-on runs might be nice.
We need to push across a couple more runs. Lets do this
Professional Deke by Neck
Nice throw by Nick but should have caught it in the air.
Smith v Aguilar is scaring me.
Another run, please…
That Markakis throw might end up being the play of the game.
Generally speaking, if we’d wanted to play Pache over Markakis as the season developed, I’d have been in favor of that. Throw him into the deep end as the starting RF for the first time in the playoffs? No thanks.
Rough day for RAJ… maybe stay off the Twitter machine & just play baseball — they’re definitely getting you out today.
Ronald breaking out the golden sombrero the day after getting beaned is not exactly much of an incentive for the Marlins to stop doing it.
A humbling day for Acuna. He’ll learn from it, I’m sure.
Man, Screech is something, isn’t he?
Wow, 4-0 with 3 shutouts.
Who would’ve figured?
W’s all around.
Hard to lose when you don’t let the other team score! Let’s end it tomorrow and get the pen good and rested for the LCS.
I never made a prediction for this round, and now I don’t want to jinx it. Let’s just keep winning.
Btw, I just bought one of those tshirts too.
I think the braves are leading the postseason in pitching…..just like we drew it up
Now we’ll see how they do when it’s someone not Max or Ian on the mound tomorrow. I hope it’s the “good” Wright.
We’ve given Wright the best possible chance for him to be successful here. The season isn’t riding on his every move, just go out and pitch.
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