After 3 straight losses, the Braves won one. (they say, don’t bury the lead, sometimes spelled lede). Isn’t that the main takeaway? But those who visit this site generally already know that. So, the journalist questions of who, when, how, and (to the extent explainable by rational though) why are more important.
On to the why. So, the Braves lost twice in close games to the Cardinals. They are a pretty good team and do have Debbil Magic working for them. So, though disappointing, it could not be deemed unlikely. Also, one of those was the “last game of a series” and we know how those have been going (but no reasonable proof on the “why” for that). Then, home game, night game, Tuesday, after an off day and a close loss to what may be the most pitiful franchise in MLB. The disfunctional operations of that front office are much more of a morally bankrupt effort than the broke ass penny pinching ways of teams like the Royals and Pirates.
So, we won a game and controlled it almost to the end. Either Kenley Jansen needs more rest, or he is approaching 200 degrees on the meat thermometer. We endured this stuff from Jim West last year and then all of a sudden he turned to magic in the post season. I certainly don’t COUNT on that. But, the conventional notion of a closer protects the Braves a little. If the other guy only has one inning left to get you, you are better off with your best couple of 1 inning guys taking 7 and 8 (with due regard for splits and handedness and “area of the lineup) than using the less effective reliever earlier.
The “whats.” Kyle Wright was the star. Well, then that brings up the “hows.” I really did think this time last year that the Braves could use Wright for 4 or 5 years as a fairly good number 4. Well, something changed. Last night 7 IP, 6 K, 5 H, 2BB, WHIP 1, R 0, pitches 96 with 63 for strikes. The “quality start” of 6 innings with 3 runs or less (includes the lesser run states) produces a team win nearly 80% of the time. So, with that, a generally strong run scoring offense, and what supposedly is a pretty good pen, you figure “we got this thing.” Minter was vintage Minter. And then in the 9th, Jansen got a flyout on the first pitch and a 3 pitch strikeout on the second batter. So WPA is soaring. Rockies need 3 runs after 2 outs just to tie. Then, a full count walk to Grichuk and a first pitch home run to the toggle switch. Then, a groundout followed by a large “whew” at Truist.
The offense has been a little tepid in this down stroke. Austin Riley forgot he was a contract signing slacker in the first and hit a home run with “the flow” on for a 2 run lead. Then, Gimp was able to launch one for a 3 to zero lead in the fifth. Overall, 5 hits and 4 walks (but 10 k’s in only 8 home innings).
No getaway today for the Rockies. Last night Mets beat Dodgers, so it is still a 3 game deficit. Rosters add 2 extra spots today. We got Jake Marisnick on a minor league deal yesterday and that is good injury / disastrous performance insurance. AA, time to admit your worst mistake in Atlanta and clear the dead (over) weight of Ozuna.