Lowe reaches another low vs. NY

  New York -- So what did we learn last night? Well, we learned that when Bobby Cox thinks a pitcher can get an inning-ending double-play grounder, he will wait … and wait … and wait a little longer for said pitcher to get that grounder.
  We learned that the bubble tea is particularly good at one of the many little late-night joints near my hotel in the Chinatown section of beautiful downtown Flushing, N.Y.
  (Before you ask why I’m here: Series is three night games, so it wasn’t even worth staying in   Manhattan and schlepping back and forth on the subway in heat-advistory weather, not without even one day game to make a night on the town possible. So it’s Flushing, and a very low hotel rate, and Citi Field literally within view from my window. And not much else.)
  (Oh, some of you might also be asking, what is bubble tea? Google it. Don’t have enough time to write a good explanation. But it’s good.)

Braves need Jurrjens to pitch a whole lot better tonight than Lowe did last night

Braves need Jurrjens to pitch a whole lot better tonight than Lowe did last night

  We learned that when Martin Prado, Yunel Escobar, Chipper Jones and Brian McCann aren’t doing much, neither is this offense (but we knew that already, didn’t we?).
  And we learned one other thing. Or, rather, I learned it today upon closer inspection. And that is, New York teams can bring out the very worst in Derek Lowe, at least during regular-season games.
  Get this: After Lowe gave up a career-high eight runs in the excruciating fourth inning of the Mets’ 9-4 win last night (he was finally pulled with two outs after the ninth hit of the inning), it made it the fourth time since the 2007 All-Star break that Lowe has given up at least 10 hits and eight runs while failing to make it out of the fourth inning of a starter.
  Three of those starts were against New York teams, including the June 25 game this season against the Yankees when he allowed 11 hits and eight runs (six earned) while recording only nine outs.
  In the other three of the four such starts since the ‘07 All-Star break, Lowe allowed eight earned runs. The first of the four was his second start after that break, when he gave up 10 hits and nine runs (eight earned) against the Mets.
  Such spectacular less-than-four-innings failure occurred again on Aug. 6, 2008, when Lowe gave up 13 hits and eight earned runs, including two homers, in 3-1/3 innings of a loss at St. Louis.
  Eleven days before the Yankee debacle this season, he had an even worse start at Baltimore when he was charged with eight hits and seven runs (all earned) in 2-1/3 innings), throwing 80 pitches to get five outs. But as far as double-digit hits and eight runs in under four innings, it’s been four times since the 2007 break, and three have come against New York teams.
  So it’s probably not surprising that two of his worst four ERAs against teams have been against the Mets (career-worst 7.89 ERA in 11 games including five starts) and Yankees (6.41 in 40 games including 16 starts).
  His worst record (1-6) is against the Cardinals, against whom he has a 6.69 ERA in seven games, all starts. Dude has given up 62 hits (seven homers) in 37-2/3 innings against the Cardinals. Something tells me if the Braves were to ever try to trade his contract, the Cubs wouldn’t be calling.
  By the way, since the 2007 All-Star break, Lowe has a 30-25 record and 4.00 ERA in 74 games (73 starts), with a .266 opponents’ average, 281 strikeouts and 115 walks in 437 innings. His teams (Dodgers and Braves) are 40-34 in those games.
  Is he a bonafide ace? No. He’s a durable guy who you can count on to make every start and give you a lot of innings, and when his sinkerball is on he can shut a team down. But last night’s game served as a bit of a reminder that there’s three years and $45 mill remaining on Lowe’s contract after this season.
  And a reminder that when you’re not a strikeout pitcher, it’s tough to stop the bleeding sometimes. Particularly if you’re left in to get that elusive groundball out even as things — meaning the game — are caving around you.
  One more stat, from Elias: The nine hits allowed by Lowe in the fourth were the most off any pitcher in one innings in more than two years, since the White Sox got nine hits against Roger Clemens of the Yankees on Aug. 2, 2007. The Yankees came back win that game.
  And in case you missed it last night, Gary Sheffield greeted Kris Medlen with a double as soon as Lowe was pulled. That was Sheff’s second double of the inning and the franchise-record 10th hit in the inning for the Mets, who, it should be noted, played without the Carloses (Beltran and Delgado), David Wright, Jose Reyes and Alex Cora, all on the DL.

McCann's among several struggling Braves hitters

 ♣ Offense MIA: After hitting .295 with 12 homers and a 6.5-runs-per-game average during a 7-1 tear through Aug. 12, the Braves have hit just .212 while going 2-3 in their past five games. They’ve only scored 20 runs in that five-game stretch, and nine of those were scored against Arizona on Monday.
  The Braves have had eight hits or fewer in six consecutive games, after totaling 10 or more hits in six of the previous seven games.
It’s easier to point out which Braves hitters are not struggling than to point out the many who are.
 Adam LaRoche has hit .367 (18-for-49) with five homers, 11 RBI, 12 walks and a .484 OBP and .694 slugging percentage in 15 games since being traded to the Braves, including 7-for-17 with four homers and seven RBI in his past six games.
• Matt Diaz is 13-for-37 (.351) with four homers and nine RBI in his past 13 games.
  But after that, it’s slim pickings for this offense.
  Among the high-profile guys who’ve slumped lately:
 • Yunel Escobar is 16-for-67 (.239) with two doubles, three RBI and a .269 slugging percentage in his past 19 games, after hitting .455 with three doubles, four homers, 13 RBI and a .909 slugging percentage in his previous nine games (through July 24).
• Brian McCann is just 9-for-52 (.173) with one homer, six RBI and a .567 OPS in his past 15 games, and has as many errors (three) as RBI in his past seven games.
• Chipper Jones is 5-for-21 with no extra-base hits and two RBI in his past six games, including 0-for-10 with one walk and five strikeouts in his past three.
• Martin Prado only has five plate appearances (0-for-4, one walk) in the past four days because of mysterious headaches, and he was to fly back to Atlanta today for more tests to try to get to the bottom of the situation. The Braves might have to DL their valuable, versatile sparkplug of a player, but want to avoid it if at all possible, if he’s going to be able to play in the next few days. Brooks Conrad is a short flight away in Norfolk, Va., if they need him.

 OK, that’s it. Gotta get to the ballpark. Braves need another winning streak soon, folks, are they could, figuratively speaking, be stuck in Lodi again.

“LODI” by Creedence Clearwater Revival (John Fogerty)

Just about a year ago, I set out on the road,
Seekin’ my fame and fortune, lookin’ for a pot of gold.
Things got bad, and things got worse, I guess you will know the tune.
Oh Lord, stuck in Lodi again.

Rode in on the Greyhound; I’ll be walkin’ out if I go.
I was just passin’ through, must be seven months or more.
Ran out of time and money, looks like they took my friends.
Oh Lord, I’m stuck in Lodi again.

The man from the magazine said I was on my way.
Somewhere I lost connections, ran out of songs to play.
I came into town, a one night stand, looks like my plans fell through
Oh Lord, stuck in Lodi again.

Mmmm…
If I only had a dollar, for ev’ry song I’ve sung.
And ev’ry time I’ve had to play while people sat there drunk.
You know, I’d catch the next train back to where I live.
Oh Lord, I’m stuck in Lodi again.
Oh Lord, I’m stuck in Lodi again.

1,553 comments Add your comment

Rob from SC

August 19th, 2009
3:19 pm

Lets go Jurrjens

MFin04

August 19th, 2009
3:20 pm

Definitely thought 4 runs was easily going to be enough to win the game last night, that being said, we need the big bats in our lineup to step up. Come on Chipper, Brian, and Esco!!!

Thrillhouse44

August 19th, 2009
3:21 pm

I hope JJJ’s back is strong tonight.

Thrillhouse44

August 19th, 2009
3:22 pm

Do the Braves still win if Francoeur wears his turkey underwear? Would he help some brothers out?

NorCal

August 19th, 2009
3:23 pm

Love that song, Centerfield too. Used to work in the same office as John’s brother Jim—could not be more different people as far as I could tell.

flange1

August 19th, 2009
3:23 pm

Thanks for the new blog DOB! Bubble tea is great!

dwaynerice

August 19th, 2009
3:23 pm

seventh? I think w/a depleted bench, Bobby was trying to get Lowe thru the inning, as he was batting leadoff, and it blew up and…on well

flange1

August 19th, 2009
3:24 pm

NorCal,

What was Jim like?

Daslied

August 19th, 2009
3:24 pm

dcp (from the last blog) – I wasn’t talking about team performance. I was somewhat defending Lowe’s salary and the overall cost vs. performance of the rotation. Yep, a little more consistency on the offensive side would be awesome…

Piedmont Blues (ex-BFIR)

August 19th, 2009
3:25 pm

lexbrave (from last blog),

I read somewhere today that the Cards want Smoltz in the rotation. Guess we’ll find out.

McFann Ô

August 19th, 2009
3:25 pm

Thanks for the new Blog, Chief!

Brian McCann…has as many errors (three) as RBI in his past seven games.

8O Didn’t realize that…yikes…

Come on, BMac! Big night tonight, maybe??

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:25 pm

Thrillhouse- Reportedly the turkey underwear doesn’t fit Frenchy anymore as he grew some you know whats upon his arrival to NY.

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:26 pm

XM just finished a great interview with Mike Brito, the man who wore the white brimmed hat and sat in Dodger Stadium recording pitchs with the radar gun. Guy was a real hoot!

"You all are Cox apologists"

August 19th, 2009
3:27 pm

LAME IN UTAH,

Looser is actually spelled LOSER. Not only are you LAME but a bad speller too!!!!!!!!!!!

Hillbilly

August 19th, 2009
3:28 pm

Lord help us if Smoltz succeeds in St. Louis. These insufferable Cardinal fans will have Dave Duncan’s face carved into Mt. Rushmore if it happens. You folks think these Mets Trolls are annoying? This is child’s play. Cardinal fans here in the central U.S. are pompous, self-righteous A-holes of the first degree. He’s a good pitching coach, but they think Dave Duncan hung the moon, and Albert Pujols held him up on his shoulders so he could do it. David Wright? PFFFFT!

Steve from OH

August 19th, 2009
3:28 pm

“You are all Cox apologists” has got to be Paul Lentz. I don’t know what gives it away more…the bad quotation marks, the not-even-vaguely-insulting names, or the all caps.

nemov

August 19th, 2009
3:29 pm

Losing McClouth and Prado for any number of days kills our moderately average offense. It’s too bad we catch put Cox on the DL after last night.

Jake W.

August 19th, 2009
3:29 pm

Yeah, need JJ to step up tonight. Can’t have a Lowe like performance like last night but hey JJ can pitch a shutout and if our biggest offensive players continue to be m.i.a. then doesn’t really matter much. Lowe sucked but the fact that we didn’t get hardly any production out of three of our biggest bats in that lineup hurt too. Need more from those guys, need to step it up.

NorCal

August 19th, 2009
3:29 pm

flange1,
He was a very fussy, sterotypical accountant type. Nice guy though, and he had some good stories about John and how he drove his parents crazy playing his band in the garage. Big Giants fan :)

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:29 pm

Norcal

Word is that John F is/was a real jerk. Story was that his brother Tom passed away without him going to patch things up with him?

Don’t know if that is true, but I read it somewhere. (if it was on the internet, it has to be true. Al Gore wouldn’t put things out there that aren’t true would he?)

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:30 pm

Hillbilly- To be fair, Duncan sure has had some real good reclamation projects over the years.

Threadkiller

August 19th, 2009
3:30 pm

Smoltz should do much better in the NL

Shamus Thacker

August 19th, 2009
3:31 pm

I didn’t know Don Imus played with CCR.

"You all are Cox apologists"

August 19th, 2009
3:32 pm

DOB must even be sick of Bobby Cox after last night. How do you leave a guy in with a hand blister who’s getting shelled? There is a such thing as being too patient. The Braves lost last night due to our manager’s lack of urgency. Just listen at his statements after a loss, “he was dealing, we just had a bad fourth”. I am SICK of this guy and his underachieving teams!!!! Wren I know you will make us all proud by encouraging Bobby NOT to return. If he is fired, expect MARTIAL LAW in Georgia.

Thrillhouse44

August 19th, 2009
3:32 pm

Anders, you’re pretty funny when you’re in a good mood. Unfortunately, your mood tends to improve as mine dwindles.

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:33 pm

Thrillhouse – It’s kind of like we’re married.

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:33 pm

Steve

And to top that off, he is a “looser” as he didn’t pick up on the on purpose misspelling of loser, that never really quite became as popular as “your and idiot”.

I put that in there to see if I would get a reaction from you, dipstick!

Shamus Thacker

August 19th, 2009
3:34 pm

Can’t you taste remnants from the bong in that bubble tea?

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:35 pm

pushing your. buttons…..

Efrim

August 19th, 2009
3:35 pm

What player has been more valuable to his winning team every year for over the last decade than Mariano Rivera?

Derek Jeter?

lexbrave

August 19th, 2009
3:36 pm

piedmont, i was just going off what espn radio said.. personally i think the cards are stupid if they put john anywhere but the pen.

knowing his ego, the only way he would sign is if they guaranteed him a starting job.

NorCal

August 19th, 2009
3:36 pm

Wayne,
Could be true. I have not had contact with Jim for a few years. He did used to talk about John’s legal issues with his band and record label but I don’t remember the details or much about Tom. He was a little envious of the other brothers’ fame and fortune, he being an accountant tied to a desk and salary and all.

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:36 pm

Nothing like a 90+ degree humid day kicking around Flushing New York. You know who should be in fine spirits when he arrives to the old blog.

You guys might want to chip in and get him a room in NYC and car service back and forth to the game. Money well spent.

Paul Lentz

August 19th, 2009
3:36 pm

Fred……………I agree with your 3:11pm posting. It’s nice to see SOMEONE on this blog who has the ability to see that on a night like last night………..THAT THE OFFENSE SHOULD HAVE STEPPED IT UP WHEN THEY SAW THAT DEREK LOWE DIDNT HAVE IT………..especially against a BUM like Oliver Perez and that horrific Mets bullpen.

Paul Lentz

August 19th, 2009
3:37 pm

AtlJersey Kid……………12:43am posting is missing the point. I NEVER SAID that Derek Lowe deserved a pass for last night’s performance. I SAID that I just dont understand why many on here VILIFIED Lowe for last night…………..when the offense QUIT after 3 innings?

If it was Johan Santana pitching last night, then 4 runs should have been considered a lot, given how tough a pitcher he is. However it was OLIVER FREAKING PEREZ pitching last night, along with 4 innings of that TERRIBLE METS BULLPEN. I know that Derek Lowe didnt have it last night. I’m not excusing his performance in any way.

However, there have been PLENTY of nights this year where the starting pitching was STELLAR yet received little run support. My question tonight was “On a night like tonight when the starting pitching had rough night……….What is wrong with asking the offense to KICK IT UP ANOTHER GEAR AGAINST TERRIBLE PITCHING and scoring some runs in the last 6 innings of the game”?

Good baseball teams will “pick each other up”. I’m sorry, but on a night like last night, 4 runs was PATHETIC. That’s right……..it was PATHETIC. When our offense saw that Lowe was struggling and didnt have it, they should have turned up the intensity and played with a SENSE OF URGENCY. Again, there were many a night when the starting pitching knew that they had to “kick it up a notch and hold the opponent down because the offense didnt have it that night”. We have won games where the offense didnt give us jack. Yet you think it is unfair to ask the offense to return the favor every once in a while?

I understand what the Braves record is when they score 4 or more runs in a game. However, on some nights, 4 runs simply isnt going to cut it.

During the 1993 World Series, do you think that the Blue Jays would have won the World Series if they took the “we have good pitching, so all we have to do is score 4 runs and we are set” attitude? Blue Jays pitching was ROCKED that series (and they had a really good pitching staff leading up to that World Series). However, the Blue Jays offense knew if they was going to win the World Series……..that they would have to pick up the starting pitching and PUT THE HURTING ON THE PHILLIES PITCHING STAFF.

Yet you think that an early 4-0 lead after 3 innings means that the offense can “take the rest of the night off” because they did “its job”? You, my friend, are the one who cant reason

"You all are Cox apologists"

August 19th, 2009
3:37 pm

NO, I am not Paul Lentz. Plus, I don’t mean to insult anyone but I will call out someone who thinks they’re being a wise-guy. Cox is a great players managers but he sucks at in-game-management. Cox would make a good bench coach but he should relinquish the manager’s spot to someone who isn’t loyal to a fault.

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
3:37 pm

From the Associated Press: Derek Lowe Adds A New Pitch To His Arsenal

After throwing seven straight quality starts in a span that saw him go 4-0 with a 2.91 ERA, Derek Lowe expanded his arsenal by adding a batting-practice fastball to go along with his sinker, curveball, and change-up.

“It’s really going to help me take it to the next level.” Lowe said in a press conference before his start Tuesday night. “I’ve been working on the pitch for awhile with Roger [McDowell, Braves' Pitching Coach]. I was able to consistently throw it letter-high over the heart of the plate with no movement, but Roger really helped me tone it down to about 81 MPH, just like a batting practice fastball should be.”

Lowe’s new pitch was on display Tuesday night as he was touched up for eleven hits in just 3 and 2/3 innings. Most of the damage came in the 4th when Lowe broke out the new weapon. The Mets totaled 8 runs on 10 hits–9 off of Lowe’s new BP Fastball, as he calls it.

“It was perfect, really” former Atlanta Braves outfielder Jeff Francoeur said. “He was doing a great job of getting the ball over the plate, it was easy to see, and it was coming in at the perfect speed. I don’t think anyone had trouble getting around on it or seeing it. It was just like taking live BP.”

Lowe was just happy he was able to do his job, even if he was charged with the loss.

“I’ve got my batting practice fastball now, I really think it’s a pitch I’ll be able to utilize over the next 4 years–the life of my contract. The Braves brought me in to give them quality innings for the next 4 years and I think this batting practice fastball is going to help me accomplish that.” Lowe continues, “There will be plenty more opportunities to throw batting practice in the future, on and off the field. I now know what I’ve got to do. Zero in on the heart of the plate, slow it down, and keep it straight as an arrow.”

Lowe, who signed the largest free agent contract in Atlanta Braves club history this past off-season–$60 million over 4 years–is prepared to use the BP Fastball in his next start against the Marlins on August 23.

“The Marlins are a young, aggressive team”, said Lowe. “They’ll really thrive off of the BP fastball. Just serve it up and let their unrefined tools do the work.”

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:38 pm

Can somebody give us “un-worldly” types an explanation of what bubble tea is?

bravesgrl4life

August 19th, 2009
3:38 pm

Today is a new day. I’m going to hope for the best tonight and hope I get to actually watch :)

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:39 pm

Derek Jeter? (Efrim)

I disagree. But that’s a subjective argument for sure. Anyone else?

Shamus Thacker

August 19th, 2009
3:39 pm

lexbrave: piedmont, i was just going off what espn radio said.. personally i think the cards are stupid if they put john anywhere but the pen.

You’re right, a playpen is the best place for an over-sized infant…

flange1

August 19th, 2009
3:40 pm

Wayne,

Way more to the Fogerty story with his brother Tom died! I have met John, he is a bit different, but not bad, really kind of fussy like an accountant (his brother?)!

There was bad blood between the owner of Fantasy Records (Saul Zaentz) and John about the horrible contract that Creedence signed. The other members of Creedence (including John’s brother Tom) sided against John in the legal and verbal battles. John HATED Zaentz with a passion (if you have the sola album called Centerfield, listen to the song Vaentz can’t dance)

The brothers were estranged for a few years, when Tom was in the hospital the final time, John went to see him, all was good for a few minutes, then Tom said Saul Zaentz is my best friend in the world.

John walked out, and Tom died the next day….

John also refused to play with the other 2 surviving members of Creedence when they were elected to the Rock and Roll HOF.

More useless information for the blog world!

Steve from OH

August 19th, 2009
3:41 pm

Cox is a great players managers but he sucks at in-game-management.

He’s not an outstanding in-game manager, I agree, but you’d prefer Dusty Baker or Jerry Manuel managing your club instead? Joe Girardi? Lou Piniella? C’mon, man.

Hillbilly

August 19th, 2009
3:41 pm

Anders, I’ll be the first to admit that, but until you’ve lived in this sea of red that extends from Illinois all the way down here to south Arkansas, you can’t understand how tiresome it gets to have his reclamation projects and the Cardinals’ 10 World Series titles crammed down your throat every day for your entire life.

EDIT: I take that back. I’m sure you do understand, being a Mets fan and having to deal with Yankee history on a daily basis. Doesn’t that crap get old?

Paul Lentz

August 19th, 2009
3:42 pm

MFin04………….After 3 innings last night, I thought the same thing that you stated in your 3:20pm posting.

However, when it became apparent that 4 runs wasnt going to be enough, we STILL had 5 more innings to score at least 4 more runs against the terrible Mets pitching staff.

Again, if the Braves are indeed a play-off caliber team, then asking the offense to PICK UP the pitching staff on an off night…….IS NOT TOO MUCH TO ASK, especially against this Mets pitching staff.

Nova Scotia Steve

August 19th, 2009
3:42 pm

Today is a new day…All is not lost…

But caution…we can’t fall 5 or 6 games back of the wild card….Hence yes we need another 4 or 5 game winning streak.

We can beat Santana…but we have to win today and then let’s go from there…

munz

August 19th, 2009
3:42 pm

DOB, DOB, DOB —
You may have already tuned in to this band, but if not, give American Aquarium a listen … http://www.myspace.com/americanaquarium … really good stuff if you like Ryan Bingham, Jason Isbell and the like

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:43 pm

Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.Must resist responding to Lentz posts.

bruce

August 19th, 2009
3:43 pm

ok, I am taking the blame… I was there last night and I was there for the Sunday in Baltimore… yikes

MFin04

August 19th, 2009
3:43 pm

Derek Jeter? Lol, he’s just a TAD overrated.

Jim

August 19th, 2009
3:44 pm

Losing McClouth and Prado during this stretch hurts the offese, but it hurts the defense almost as much. Church is no a CF. Almost any other CF in the NL would have caught that bloop hit in the middle of the nightmare 4th last night. With Church flanked by Diaz and Anderson for the next two weeks, we have a very weak outfield defense. Last night’s game showed that Infante is not an upgrade over KJ at 2B. We will miss Prado’s defense for as long as he is out. (He is not gold glove, but is an upgrade over Infante and KJ). We also miss the flexibility that Prado provides. Chipper is obviously hurting from the oblique strain and is not helping the team by playing and batting in the middle of the order right now. Prado at 3B and KJ/Infante at 2B might have been able to give us better lineup than an injured Chipper. On the positive side, McCann had three good ABs last night.

richbrave

August 19th, 2009
3:44 pm

IF we take one of three from the MELTS, we can still win 90 games. NOT winning this and future series against the N.Y.r’s, FISH and FILTHIES will necessitate that we sweep the NATS, and the rest of the NL a bunch. This is quite problematic. Things don’t look too good for our being the WC in 2009. A big bat corner fielder next year will probably result in a pay-off for JOHN MALONE’s investment. The “roll” will escalate by normal means as well as the addition of 10-15 million or so for a big bopper. Where are we now payroll wise – 95 MILL.? As I said in the 2007 off-season, 110-120 million more or less gets you to the postseason dance. “Let’s roll GRIGSY. The sooner we’re out of this shyt-hole the better.” – MATEWAN 1980.

TnBrian

August 19th, 2009
3:44 pm

Anders is around more than usual since late last night. Can’t imagine why…well, his team did light up a sinkerballer who I’ll swear by this that that blister screwed his grip up, but it has to make Anders and Stenchy feel like they’re on top of the world. Who cares, lets see how that AAA lineup does going against a pitcher who doesn’t have a blister and is hitting corners and changing speeds, Anders.

NorCal

August 19th, 2009
3:44 pm

flange1,
Interesting story. Jim sided with John as far as I can remember but did not talk about it all that much. Too busy with those fascinating paper spreadsheets (pre EXCEL).

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:45 pm

Hillbilly -Same church, different pew for sure.

METSFAN4LIFE

August 19th, 2009
3:45 pm

lowe sucks, prado’s weak

Efrim

August 19th, 2009
3:46 pm

I disagree. But that’s a subjective argument for sure. Anyone else?

Well, he plays a bit more than Mariano, right? He’s in the game even when they are down. When they are tied. Heck, he appears in the game before the eighth inning.

bruce

August 19th, 2009
3:46 pm

ok I will take the blame… I was there last night and I was at Lowe’s Sunday game in Baltimore… yikes

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
3:46 pm

Jim,
I don’t think losing McLouth and Prado is a downgrade defensively. I strongly believe KJ is a better defender than Prado at 2B and Church is probably just as good in Center as McLouth. Church has already made a few nice plays there.

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:47 pm

Cox Apo

Hey, if your going to speak without yelling, and be reasonable, then I will talk with you. And YES, I was being a smart alec about all your gazillion posts saying the same damned things every time. I stand behind that.

But then, when you come after an entire state because I ticked you off, you showed me that you have very little self control.

If you go back, I don’t think I called you anything, short of just telling you that after a few times, nobody was going to read your crap.

You actually made a positive statement about Bobby being great with players. THAT, my friend, is what will get him to the Hall. He has NEVER been a great tactician. Neither is Joe Torre and a myriad of other managers. They are good at times, but not great.

When Bobby makes a good move, nobody says anything about it, because it is expected. When he makes a blunder, all hell breaks loose. You can’t have it both ways. If your going to rip him for his screw ups, then you have to note ALL his good moves too.

He pulls some real head scratchers for sure, but it scares the heck out of me to think what will happen when he leaves.

So, why don’t you go and apologize to the state of Utah and the west in general, and then maybe we can have a conversation. If you do, I promise I won’t tell you to kiss my arse again!

Deal?

"You all are Cox apologists"

August 19th, 2009
3:47 pm

Top 5 things a good tactical manager would have done with the Braves:

1. Moylan wouldn’t be leading MLB in appearances. (Tommy John Surgery)

2. Conrad would have stayed on the team over NOrton (was hitting .340)

3. Corkey Miller would have stayed driving trucks, plumbing, (last year)

4. Chipper’s mysterious injuries wouldn’t be tolerated.

5. This team would be playoff bound.

TnBrian

August 19th, 2009
3:47 pm

Boy, Anders is going crazy on the blog today, huh? Can’t imagine why…well, his team did light up a sinkerballer who I’ll swear that the blister screwed up his grip, but Anders and Stenchy must feel like they’re on top of the world right now. Lets see how that AAA lineup does going against a pitcher that doesn’t have a blister, is hitting the corners, and changing speeds, Anders.

TnBrian

August 19th, 2009
3:48 pm

Oh now my other post shows up when I sumbit the other one! SOB! Oh well, I meant it Anders, so read both and cry for me.

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

Cole Rohrbough last 2 starts: 11.0 IP, 8 H, 4 BB, 2 R, 7 K.

Good to see I guess.

bravesgrl4life

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

Bruce, stay away, please, please, please!!!

Shaun

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

Is he a bonafide ace? No. He’s a durable guy who you can count on to make every start and give you a lot of innings, and when his sinkerball is on he can shut a team down. But last night’s game served as a bit of a reminder that there’s three years and $45 mill remaining on Lowe’s contract after this season.

And a reminder that when you’re not a strikeout pitcher, it’s tough to stop the bleeding sometimes. Particularly if you’re left in to get that elusive groundball out even as things — meaning the game — are caving around you.

I think DOB hit the nail on the head here. With a non-strikeout pitcher, we should expect teams to string together hits every now and then against him.

Derek Lowe is not a great pitcher. This should come as a shock to no one…not even Frank Wren. But Wren didn’t sign Lowe to a 4-year, $60 million deal to be a great pitcher. He signed him to be a guy to give the Braves 200+ average-to-decent innings over 4 seasons.

FanGraphs.com lists what a player would receive on the open market based on his performance.

Derek Lowe has outperformed his actual salary the last three seasons. This season he’s been worth $12.5 million, which is somewhat close to his current average annual salary of $15 million a season.

Clearly Lowe’s value lies in the fact that he’s not likely to be below average in a season and he’s going to give the Braves 200+ innings. That’s not as good as a Sabathia or a Santana, but a) those players are obviously much more expensive and b) Tommy Hanson could be one of the 15 best pitchers in the NL within the next four years at millions less than the going rate for one of the 15 best. All things considered, the Braves are in fine shape. Anyone who expected Lowe to be or thinks Lowe should be a Cy Young contender simply because of his 4-year, $60 million contract needs to do their research.

dcp

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

Got you Daslied…thanks for the clarity from yesterday’s blog. They have to win tonight. Cannot go into tomorrow facing Santana and needing to salvage one game from a depleted Mets team. We will see. This weekend will be a huge test with FL getting 10+ hits per game for two weeks now – something will give there and let’s hope it is not the Braves’ pitching.

lexbrave

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

bubble tea originally got its name i think because it was shaken up to well create bubbles…now i think most places use a premixed powder and the only bubbles you get are in the form of some sort of round gooey gellatin balls in the bottom of the drink.

quite tasty depending on the flavor, but really sweet… i try to avoid sugary drinks so i rarely indulge in it.

forget the curveball, Ricky

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

with that game last night i have come to understand that no matter how terrible a team that the opposition runs onto the field, bobby will find a way to f it up

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:49 pm

Efrim- So why do closers make more than middle inning relief guys who pitch more etc…?

Come on, you know better.

lexbrave

August 19th, 2009
3:51 pm

i just googled it and the gellatin like balls in bubble tea are actually tapioca..wierd.

Steve from OH

August 19th, 2009
3:51 pm

PWH–I agree that Kelly is a better defender than Prado (well, at least way better than Omar), but I’d take McLouth over Church. I think UZR and +/- are a little unkind to him. That said he’s not a gold glover.

Shamus Thacker

August 19th, 2009
3:51 pm

The argument that there’s nobody competent enough to replace Bobby is pretty lame. If Bobby weren’t Bobby, and not already managing the Braves, he wouldn’t be sufficiently competent to replace his incompetent self.

That makes absolutely no sense, but I’m going with it~!

Anders

August 19th, 2009
3:52 pm

Tnbrian – You forgot to close with wah,wah – stomp, stomp.

BTW- I was here all day yesterday and heard from many that I better come back after the slaughter. I didn’t realize you didn’t mean any slaughter.{:

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
3:54 pm

I don’t know. Church has been good in center for us. McLouth’s been good too, I guess. I don’t think there’s much of a difference is my point.

CLE

August 19th, 2009
3:54 pm

PWHjort–You could use an AP Stylebook, but overall I’d say your story at 3:37 is pretty good!

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
3:54 pm

flange1

Thanks for the useless info. That makes sense to me, I’m buying it.

:-)

"You all are Cox apologists"

August 19th, 2009
3:55 pm

I would take Lou Pinella in a HEARTBEAT over Bobby Cox. The thing is, his fiery personality is only good for 3 years.

Top 10 (ACTIVE) managers I would take over Cox TODAY:

1. Jim Leyland
2. Tony Larussa
3. Joe Torre
4. Terry Francona
5. Joe Girardi
6. Ron Gardenhire
7. Mike Scioscia
8. Bruce Bochy
9. Charlie Manuel
10. Ozzie Guillen

Every manager I listed has either beaten Cox in a playoff matchup, won more games, or is flat out a better manager. Argue with me??????????

Thrillhouse44

August 19th, 2009
3:56 pm

Shamus, Ted Turner would understand.

Efrim

August 19th, 2009
3:58 pm

Efrim- So why do closers make more than middle inning relief guys who pitch more etc…?

Then why do the best position players make more than the best closer? Why do pitchers like A.J. Burnett get paid more than Mariano Rivera, when they play on the same team?

Steve from OH

August 19th, 2009
3:58 pm

Ok, first off, Torre and Cox are pretty much the same manager.

Secondly–Ozzie Guillen? WTF? Seriously? I’d hire Paul Lentz to manage the club before I’d hire Guillen.

No to Girardi for sure. Don’t know enough about Gardenhire or Boachy to comment. Not really a huge fan of Scioscia (I know I’ll get some heat for that, but you do like plate discipline, right?).

Thrillhouse44

August 19th, 2009
3:59 pm

“You all are Cox apologists”, not a single one of them are likely to come to ATL to manage. What available manager would you consider?

brent a.

August 19th, 2009
3:59 pm

One of the things that I think is interesting about the Braves manager situation, is that after two decades with Bobby Cox, we really don’t know what it will be like for the Braves FO to try and fill this position.

Would guys like Torre, LaRussa, Guillen, Gardenhire, Piniella, (etc.) be interested? Which of those would the Braves be interested in?

Would the Braves hire from within? Are the Braves going to try and bridge the gap until Chipper Jones can be the manager?

We’ve seen so little change around here that it’s hard to imagine what the Braves will do.

How many of you had Roger McDowell as Leo Mazzone’s replacement? How many of you were take off-guard by JS’s “retirement”?

The way the Braves operate, I kind of suspect that the FO already knows what it plans to do next in regards to the manager slot. The only time I’ve heard Wren address it was last spring when he said that he didn’t even want to think of having to replace Bobby Cox. I think he meant it, but that doesn’t mean that the organization isn’t making plans.

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
3:59 pm

I know a lot about Gardy. I like him. The main thing most Twins fans complain about is he always has some very bad middle infielder batting 2nd.

Wayne in Utah

August 19th, 2009
4:01 pm

Steve

One thing about Prado is it seems that he more regularly makes an eye popping defensive play, but his range is surely lacking.

I have liked what I have seen of McLouth so far, a bit above average I would say. Church has a good rep as an above average defensive OF’er, but he is rarely used in centerfield, so that would go to a lack of range probably? Not too much dropoff from McLouth though, in my opinion.

Infante, when hitting is a good utility infielder. Too many appearances will show his soft underbelly.

TnBrian

August 19th, 2009
4:01 pm

Just to keep putting fuel on last night’s fire… Infante cost Lowe two runs on that grounder that any 2nd baseman should make. It would’ve been 6-4 to end that inning, instead those two extra runs made the hill VERY hard to climb. He does look a little chunkier since coming back and slower with everything– the glove and bat.

brent a.

August 19th, 2009
4:01 pm

I hadn’t even seen “apologist’s” post when I began typing, nor thrillhouse’s response.

In short, we can never be so certain as to who wouldn’t leave their current situation to come to Atlanta. The job has not been open in 20 years!

Bravesfasfaninmetsland

August 19th, 2009
4:02 pm

DOB

Was at the Lowe debacle last night. Tried to find you during batting bractice, had to settle for talking to Kevin Burkart (I was behind the Mets dugout) Staying home tonight less people hate me here when I route out loud for teh Braves

BOBBY'S BELLY

August 19th, 2009
4:03 pm

HAS SCHAFER STARTED TO TAKE CUTS YET AFTER THE REMOVAL OF THE CAST?

PWHjort

August 19th, 2009
4:05 pm

BOBBY’S BELLY,
The CAPS LOCK key is on the left side of your keyboard. Above the shift, below the tab. And no, Schafer hasn’t started taking swings.

David O'Brien

August 19th, 2009
4:05 pm

Nothing on Prado, who only was supposed to arrive in Atlanta at around 2 p.m….

Just for the record, Lowe’s had that blister on his throwing hand for weeks. While going 5-0 in his seven starts. Not in a spot that affects his throwing, or sure didn’t before last night. And if it did last night, then no one mentioned it or even used it as a possible reason for his results…

And I didn’t write anything earlier, but it sure looked like Infante could have made at least one play on one of those balls that got through the right side….

LINEUP (as relayed to me by PR man without writing it down, I’ll correct in a bit if any difference)

1. Infante
2. Anderson
3. Chipper
4. Mac
5. Roch
6. Esco
7. Diaz
8. Church
9. Jurrjens

fleming

August 19th, 2009
4:06 pm

PWHjort – The CAPS LOCK key is on the left side of your keyboard. Above the shift, below the tab.

Not on my keyboard it isn’t. That’s where the Control key lives.

McFann Ô

August 19th, 2009
4:06 pm

Bruce

Aw! Not your fault!

They oughta put on a better show for you tonight.

McFann Ô

August 19th, 2009
4:08 pm

:roll: Thanks for the lineup, Chief.

BL

August 19th, 2009
4:10 pm

- Brian McCann is just 9-for-52 (.173) with one homer, six RBI and a .567 OPS in his past 15 games, and has as many errors (three) as RBI in his past seven games.

OUCH!!!

Nova Scotia Steve

August 19th, 2009
4:11 pm

All-Star Atlanta Braves AJC Blog Starting 9 & Front Office

1. RHR
2. Shamus Thacker
3. Rob from SC
4. David O’Brien
5. McFann – Cause I know she doesn’t like the clean-up spot
6. Tomahawkin
7. Mixxo
8. TnBrian
9. Steve from OH

Manager: Bobby’s Cox
Hitting Coach: Wayne in Utah
Pitching Coach: Paul Lentz
General Manager: Martha Stewart
Head Scout: Carroll Rogers

Nova Scotia Steve

August 19th, 2009
4:11 pm

AndyC

August 19th, 2009
4:11 pm

“You all are Cox apologists”

So you don’t try to insult people, eh? So you weren’t trying to insult anyone when you basically called everyone on the blog a “racist redneck” at 2:33pm yesterday? Link attached below. I don’t know, that sure sounds like an insult to me.

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-braves-blog/2009/08/17/rain-for-a-rain-makeup/comment-page-20/#comments

McFann Ô

August 19th, 2009
4:12 pm

BL

Yeah, we could go back further than that, but is that really necessary?

Chief’s line there paints a “good” enough picture…

bubble tea fan

August 19th, 2009
4:12 pm

Bubble tea is pretty tasty, once you get used to the idea of tapioca balls in your tea. Also, the tapioca balls are very sticky, and will adhere nicely to skin or clothing when shot out of a straw at unsuspecting targets. Not that I would ever do such a thing.

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