When Braves strike out, they go for broke

 

 So we ink-stained wretches of the pressbox are watching Ricky Nolasco’s overpowering 16-strikeout performance against the Braves last night, marking each strikeout in our scorebooks while typing away at our stories and making note of the various announcements being made as Nolasco matched this franchise record or that one, or this Braves opposition standard or that one.

And it was announced that Nolasco’s 16 strikeouts tied Sid Fernandez’s 1989 mark with the Mets as the most against the Braves since the team moved to Atlanta before the 1966 season. Impressive, no doubt.

Diaz reacts after making last out of Wednesday's game, ending Braves' rally and any remaining postseason hopes.

Diaz reacts after making last out of Wednesday's game, ending Braves' rally and any remaining postseason hopes.

 

But there was one small word that was easily overlooked within that announcement. The “in” Atlanta part of it. And if I’d listened closer, and hadn’t been watching and scoring the game while also writing, I might have objected and said, “Yes, but what’s the record for strikeouts against the Braves since the team moved to Atlanta? Who cares if the mark was set here or in a road game?”

Because if Sid Fernandez ever had the mark for most strikeouts against the Atlanta-era Braves, he only had it for one year. That is, for strikeouts against the Atlanta-era Braves in a game, period. Home or road. And in this case, that’s what really matters, right?

As AJC reader Brian Huber of Atlanta pointed out to me this morning, he could distinctly remember staying up late while in college one night during June 1990 to see whether the Dodgers’ Ramon Martinez might break Roger Clemens’ record of 20 strikeouts, when Martinez was fanning Braves at an alarming rate during a West Coast night game.

Pedro's brother Ramon mowed down 18 Braves in a game

Pedro's brother Ramon mowed down 18 Braves in a game

 

Martinez didn’t break Clemens’ record, but he tied Sandy Koufax’s franchise record with 18 strikeouts in a complete-game, 6-0 win against the Braves and Tom Glavine. David Justice, Odibe McDowell, Jeff Blauser and  Jim Presley all struck out three times that day against Martinez, and Dale Murphy and Ron Gant also whiffed a couple of time.

As L.A. Times writer Bill Plasche put it in the next day’s editions, “Like punch-drunk boxers, the Atlanta Brave hitters swung. And missed. And swung. And missed.”

So reader Huber’s alertness got me thinking … and I seemed to remember another pitcher striking out at least as many Braves as Nolasco did last night … in a game during my time covering the Braves since the early part of this decade ….

Ahh, yes. Of course.

None other than Milwaukee’s Ben Sheets. Sheets struck out 18 (and walked one) in a three-hit, complete-game, 4-1 win at Milwaukee.

Among his multiple-strikeout victims that day were Adam LaRoche, J.D. Drew, Johnny Estrada, Andruw Jones and Wilson Betemit (Chipper wasn’t in the lineup that day). Drew, Estrada and Betemit all whiffed three times.

Anyway, just wanted to clarify before we moved forward.

Nolasco’s performance was nonetheless impressive, especially given that he piled up 16 K’s in just 7-2/3 innings, and came within one of Tom Seaver’s major-league record of 10 consecutive strikeouts.

Oh, and Nolasco also did it against a Braves team desperately trying to keep its playoff hopes alive, in a game that meant more to them than it should have meant to the Marlins.

 ♣ Problems begin at home? Hey, all we’re going to say is this: Since Aug. 14, the Braves are 16-6 with a .270 team average and 3.15 ERA in 22 road games, including wins in the last 10.

During that same stretch since Aug. 14, the Braves are 10-12 with a .251 average and 3.53 ERA in 22 home games.

They averaged barely four runs per game at home in that period, and 5.6 runs on the road.

Why is this? Beats me. We’ve asked, since this was also a problem for a long stretch of last season. We heard theories at that time about how the Braves, especially the younger ones, didn’t focus as much on baseball during homestands, when they had family and other issues to deal with, rather than just waking up in a hotel and heading for the ballpark after watching SportsCenter and maybe getting something to eat.

Don’t know if there’s anything to that, or if they just don’t thrive in the home atmosphere, or what. But it’s something they might want to address in the offseason or before next season, if there’s anything to address. I don’t know. Just pointing it out.

I will add this: For whatever reason, leadoff man Nate McLouth has been particularly bad at Turner Field, compared to his road performance, since the Braves acquired him from the Pirates in a June 3 trade.

McClouth has hit .206 with 11 extra-base hits (two homers), 11 RBI, 18 runs, a .321 OBP and a .312 slugging percentage in 37 games at Turner Field.

In 43 road games, he’s hit .300 with 18 extra-base hits, 23 RBI, 37 runs, a .385 OBP and .483 slugging percentage.

In other words, he’s been exactly the player the Braves hoped they were getting – in road games. But at home, he’s been something else entirely.

While I’ve theorized in recent weeks that his lingering hamstring and back issues might have caused the decline in his performance with the Braves, that wouldn’t explain the great disparity in his home/road stats.

So I just undermined my own previous theory. Because as I noted, on the road he’s been the player the Braves thought they were getting. Well, except for a lack of stolen bases. But otherwise, he’s been solid in road games. Very solid.

That disparity has only increased the longer he’s been with the Braves, too. Since July 1, he’s hit .183 with five extra-base hits (one homer), seven RBI and a .583 OPS in 25 home games.

In that time on the road, he’s hit .305 with 14 extra-base hits (five homers), 16 RBI and an .881 OPS.

Nearly 300 points higher on the OPS on the road than at home since July 1.

 ♣ One more thing about McLouth: His .357 OBP as a leadoff man this season doesn’t rank among the National League’s top 10. It’s one point behind Stephen Drew and Jose Reyes, who are tied for ninth, and 37 points behind Florida rookie Chris Coghlan, who has a .394 leadoff OBP (and should probably be Rookie of the Year, by the way, if voters are really looking close at his remarkable numbers).

The lowest leadoff OBP among NL qualifiers remains Kelly Johnson’s .274.

The leadoff spot has been an inconsistent component again for the Braves, who got their best work at the spot, in all honesty, from Matt Diaz and Omar Infante in their limited duties there. Granted, they were quite limited in Diaz’s case.

Diaz was 18-for-41 (.439) with a .531 OBP as a leadoff man, and Infante was 30-for-93 (.323) with seven extra-base hits, a .404 OBP and a .441 slugging percentage in his stint there before the broken hand.

With the Braves, McLouth’s hit .259 with a .354 OBP, 28 extra-base hits and a .354 OBP and .403 slugging percentage in 313 at-bats in the leadoff spot.

 

♣ Etc.

 Here’s how far the Mets have slipped. After the Braves swept the Nationals last weekend to drop their record to make the Nationals 9-28 with a 5.68 ERA over 37 games, the Nationals turned around and won three in a row this week against the Mets while holding them to eight runs.

The Mets have averaged 3.5 runs per game during their current 5-17 skid to oblivion … er, toward season’s end.

OK, outta time again. Wanted to throw in some comparisons between Jeff Francoeur and Garret Anderson (overall stats almost identical this year, except Anderson much better with RISP) and some other things, but I’ll do it later. Gotta get to ballpark.

This tune from The Boss seemed appropriate today.

bruce_car_side

“ONE STEP UP” by Bruce Springsteen

 

Woke up this morning my house was cold

Checked out the furnace she wasn’t burnin’

Went out and hopped in my old Ford

Hit the engine but she ain’t turnin’

We’ve given each other some hard lessons lately

But we ain’t learnin’

We’re the same sad story that’s a fact

One step up and two steps back

 

Bird on a wire outside my motel room

But he ain’t singin’

Girl in white outside a church in June

But the church bells they ain’t ringing

I’m sittin’ here in this bar tonight

But all I’m thinkin’ is

I’m the same old story same old act

One step up and two steps back

 

It’s the same thing night on night

Who’s wrong baby who’s right

Another fight and I slam the door on

Another battle in our dirty little war

When I look at myself I don’t see

The man I wanted to be

Somewhere along the line I slipped off track

I’m caught movin’ one step up and two steps back

 

There’s a girl across the bar

I get the message she’s sendin’

Mmm she ain’t lookin’ to married

And me well honey I’m pretending

Last night I dreamed I held you in my arms

The music was never-ending

We danced as the evening sky faded to black

One step up and two steps back

969 comments Add your comment

Tiger Woods

October 1st, 2009
3:05 pm

Soph

October 1st, 2009
3:06 pm

Thanks for the new blog, DOB.

No way! I love MB

I guess you won’t be joining us then?

jeffrey d

October 1st, 2009
3:09 pm

Joining you? I’ll be up in Mark’s rafters shooting you with my Nerf gun.

jeffrey d

October 1st, 2009
3:12 pm

Although I am relieved that you won’t be beating up McFann.

You are all Cox apologists

October 1st, 2009
3:13 pm

HERE YOU HAVE IT FOLKS, Our FREE AGENT OF’S for next year:

Left fielders
Garret Anderson (38)
Marlon Anderson (36)
Jason Bay (31)
Emil Brown (35)
Marlon Byrd (32)
Carl Crawford (28) – $10MM club option with a $1.25MM buyout
Johnny Damon (36)
David Dellucci (36)
Cliff Floyd (37)
Matt Holliday (30)
Reed Johnson (33)
Jacque Jones (35)
Gabe Kapler (34)
Greg Norton (37)
Wily Mo Pena (28)
Manny Ramirez (38) – $20MM player option
Dave Roberts (38)
Gary Sheffield (41)
Fernando Tatis (35)
Randy Winn (36)

Center fielders
Rick Ankiel (30)
Rocco Baldelli (28)
Marlon Byrd (32)
Mike Cameron (37)
Endy Chavez (32)
Coco Crisp (30) – $8MM club option with a $500K buyout
Darin Erstad (36)
Ryan Freel (34)
Jerry Hairston Jr. (34)
Reed Johnson (33)
Andruw Jones (33)
Gabe Kapler (34)
Mark Kotsay (34)
Corey Patterson (30)
Scott Podsednik (34)

Right fielders
Bobby Abreu (36)
Jermaine Dye (36) – $12MM mutual option with a $1MM buyout
Brian Giles (39)
Vladimir Guerrero (34)
Eric Hinske (32)
Geoff Jenkins (35) – $7.5MM mutual option with a $1.25MM buyout
Gabe Kapler (34)
Austin Kearns (30) – $10MM club option with a $1MM buyout
Jason Michaels (34)
Xavier Nady (31)
Randy Winn (36)

Soph

October 1st, 2009
3:14 pm

My Nerf gun can take your Nerf gun anyday. Besides, McFann will protect me.

pinkygonzales

October 1st, 2009
3:17 pm

Why did Matt Diaz stray so far off of third base in last night’s climactic 9th inning and get picked off to end the game with the bases loaded in 5-4 game? Why does Greg Norton ever get an at-bat, let alone with two-men on and nobody out? He’s hitting .133 for Christ’s sake (the lowest average of any non-pitcher on the Braves roster. Hell, Javier Vasquez has a better batting average than he does.) How in God’s name do you strike out 16 times against a pitcher that nobody has heard of (Ricky Nolasco)? We know that you all want to make a big play and want to get the offense jumpstarted with one swing of the bat. But swinging at pitches out of the strike zone will not your cause (we’re talking to you, Nate McClouth.)

read our take at:
http://acasualfan.com/

ease19

October 1st, 2009
3:17 pm

Looks like YAACA threw out the all geriatric club…

Chief Nock A Homa

October 1st, 2009
3:18 pm

DOB:

I suggested this on the old one, but would appreciate your thoughts…

You’ve mentioned how difficult it would be to get rid of Lowe’s contract to anyone due to the value vs performance, etc…

And, you’ve mentioned that Vasquez value would seem to be at an all-time high…

What if we took the road of making Vasquez available to teams, but only with Lowe???

Surely there would be some interest and would have to bring home a power bat, and a back end of the rotation SP, etc…, wouldn’t you think???

TnBrian(Vazquez ace 2010)

October 1st, 2009
3:19 pm

There’s so many ways Wren & the Braves can go this offseason concerning the offense. First thing in my mind would be to get that RH power guy. I agree that it’ll come from a trade. I hate Mclouth leading off. Aside from his decent speed, he’s everything a leadoff hitter shouldn’t be… swings for the fences, doesn’t draw nearly enough walks & he K’s way too much. I mean, he’s not going to chop any slow grounders for infield hits because he has an upper cut swing. I like his defense & his occ. power, but I’d like him more batting 7th or 8th.

The Braves home/road records the last few years, especially ‘09, can be summed up in one word… ENERGY. The crowd, or what crowd there is, are lifeless and they don’t have that motivation of spoiling the opposing teams fans. That can give them energy on the road.

You are all Cox apologists

October 1st, 2009
3:21 pm

Top OF options for next year: No, Cox wouldn’t have Manny Ramirez

1. Vladimir Guerrero
2. Jason Bay
3. Matt Holiday
4. Bobby Abreu
5. Marlon Byrd

Dumbfound

October 1st, 2009
3:24 pm

Top of the second, 0-0. Believe !

richbrave

October 1st, 2009
3:26 pm

Former BRAVES on other 40-man rosters

N.L.EAST

PHILLIES:

Paul Bako

MARLINS:

Wes Helms

METS:

Elmer Dessens
Jeff Francouer
Gary Sheffield

NATS:

Willie Harris
Pete Orr

N.L. CENTRAL

CARDS:

Mark DeRosa
John Smoltz
Adam Wainwright

ASTROS

Chad Paranto

REDS:

Corky Miller

PIRATES:

Jose Ascanio
Charlie Morton
Tyler Yates

N.L. WEST

DODGERS:

Rafael Furcal
Wil Ohman
Jason Schmitt

A.L. later.

Dumbfound

October 1st, 2009
3:28 pm

Sorry, still in the bottom of the first.

richbrave

October 1st, 2009
3:28 pm

ROX:

Alan Embree
Jason Marquis

GIANTS:

Edgar Rentaria

D-BACKS:

Blaine Boyer

PADRES:

Henry Blanco
Brian Giles

Brian

October 1st, 2009
3:29 pm

1. Guerrero isn’t playing outfield anywhere next year. He’s a DH. And a Type A free agent.
2. Can’t afford Bay.
3. Ditto on Holliday
4. Will probably re-sign with LA. A statue defensively, and left-handed.
5. Byrd is the only one you listed that is a legit possibility.

Mike Cameron and Jermaine Dye are the two most likely free agent options to me.

Dumbfound

October 1st, 2009
3:30 pm

1-0 Rockies.

CB

October 1st, 2009
3:31 pm

richbrave, Brian Giles not a Brave,brother Marcus was.

Luke H.

October 1st, 2009
3:31 pm

What do you mean, no one has heard of Ricky Nolasco? Where have you been hiding?

Tomas

October 1st, 2009
3:33 pm

DOB, you said earlier that the Braves are looking for a power bat. To play where exactly?

ncscoots

October 1st, 2009
3:33 pm

richbrave, seeing that list reminds me of something: I owe an apology to someone here who knows Wainwright (can’t remember the poster’s name). In a discussion a while back, I said that I didn’t see Wainwright as an ace, the type teams feared facing. It appears I might have been just a wee bit wrong in that, LOL. So, whoever that was, you were right, I was wrong…you got me, LOL.

And, finally, a good word for my boy, Charlie Morton. Since that 10-run debacle in mid-August, he’s averaging nearly 7 IP, to go along with a 3.50 ERA. Not too shabby, for a Dentzian bum. Got to improve his K rate, but maybe he’s on his way.

ncscoots

October 1st, 2009
3:35 pm

Mike Cameron and Jermaine Dye are the two most likely free agent options to me.

Exactly why the team is more likely to opt for the trade route to an upgrade.

Braveheart

October 1st, 2009
3:40 pm

Gotta wonder whether not calling up Hanson until June cost the Braves a playoff spot. They were 3-6 when JoJo and Medlen started. They are 12-8 when Hanson starts. Maybe they’d have gone 5-4 or 6-3 if Hanson started in those 9 starts wasted away with Medlen and JoJo. Hopefully, he needed those two extra months of development in AAA. Otherwise Super 2 concerns may have cost the Braves October and who knows when their next best shot will be.

Nova Scotia Steve - Fight Like A Brave

October 1st, 2009
3:42 pm

DOB

I will remain a strong proud Braves fan and will check in from time to time with AJC and on the blog in the offseason.

Just wanted to say Thanks to you and Carroll for some great, entertaining reporting all season long.

Hope you guys are back next season as well!

My Toronto Maple Leaks kick off the regular season tonight…So i’ll be glued to that.

Anyway Thanks again,

Nova Scoita

PS

And everyone on the blog too…even though I disagree with some…still great points/opinions and hilarity

O'Brien

October 1st, 2009
3:43 pm

Since the White Sox picked up Alex Rios from the Blue Jays, maybe they wont want to pay Dye $12M. However, I’m not sure he would be a good fit for the Braves. He’s 36, and may want another long term contract, while we have Jason Heyward who could be our RF as early as June next year.

What the Braves need is a LF. I would say Carl Crawford, but his option is likely to be picked up the Rays. Other than that, I think the Braves best bet will be in a trade. Because they cant afford Jason Bay or Matt Holliday.

Trade Vazquez for a LF, resign Tim Hudson with an incentive laden contract, and resign Adam at 1B.

Brian

October 1st, 2009
3:43 pm

ncscoots, I don’t disagree with you there. It’s just what price are they willing to pay. A Javier Vazquez bat, a Kawakami bat, a Kris Medlen bat…

Shaun

October 1st, 2009
3:45 pm

I just think the home-road disparity is one of those things that there is no explanation for. It’s kind of like trying to explain it if a hitter hit better on Tuesdays than on other days of the week. It just kind of happens that his good games happen to fall mostly on a Tuesday.

Or maybe I’m wrong. Maybe there is a reason for the disparity. But what do they do about it even if there is? Because if there is a reason, it’s certainly not obvious so it’s probably not something that could be addressed. I mean, they have to try to acquire the best players that fit in to their situation and play those players.

ncscoots

October 1st, 2009
3:45 pm

Hopefully, [Hanson] needed those two extra months of development in AAA.

I don’t know if he needed the entire two months, but, his early-season minor league work seemed to prove out that he wasn’t ML ready on April 1. So, who knows? Maybe he betters the 3-6, if he’s rushed, but doesn’t equal the 12-8 later.

Tomas

October 1st, 2009
3:45 pm

Power hitter that may get traded:

- Dan Uggla
- Adam Dunn
- Carlos Pena
- Carlos Guillen

DAP

October 1st, 2009
3:47 pm

O’brien, i bet dye could play LF.

ncscoots

October 1st, 2009
3:47 pm

It’s just what price are they willing to pay. A Javier Vazquez bat, a Kawakami bat, a Kris Medlen bat…

And that might be a good way of looking at it. Good post.

Bat Masterson

October 1st, 2009
3:48 pm

Do any of you read novels for pleasure?

CB

October 1st, 2009
3:48 pm

Braveheart, I am also concerned about them doing the same with Heyward,if he is ready coming out of spring training don’t sacrifice the season for long term extra year. The heck with that.

Jonas

October 1st, 2009
3:48 pm

Colorado 1 BrewCrew 0 2nd

Brian

October 1st, 2009
3:48 pm

O’Brien, I am almost certain Dye will only get a 1-year contract from somebody. He had a rough second half and is a liability defensively. Certainly no more than 2 years. Mike Cameron is only a year older, had a very similar offensive year to Dye (really, the similarity is uncanny), and is light years better on defense.

Chief

October 1st, 2009
3:52 pm

Chief

October 1st, 2009
3:53 pm

JEFF FRANCOUER HAS JUST BEEN TRADED!

wjones

October 1st, 2009
3:57 pm

“JEFF FRANCOUER HAS JUST BEEN TRADED!”

Yeah, to the Mets, good scoop! We get Ryan Church, plus we chip in some salary to the Mets.

In other news, we traded Millwood to the Phillies for Johnny Estrada, and we sent Henry Aaron to Milwaukee for Dave May.

Daslied

October 1st, 2009
4:05 pm

Braves team OPS by inning:

1st – .744
2nd – .819
3rd – .817
4th – .802
5th – .752
6th – .653
7th – .709
8th – .710
9th – .688

That damn 6th inning! They’ve also hit into 22 DP in the 6th, which is the highest total – they don’t have more than 19 in any other inning.

Worst 6th inning offenders (starters):
McCann – .506 OPS in 50 PA
Anderson – .575 OPS in 57 PA
Prado – .488 OPS in 51 PA

Best:
Diaz – 1.013 OPS in 49 PA
McLouth – .965 OPS in 58 PA
LaRoche – 1.704 OPS in 19 PA

Anyhoo…useless stat for the day!

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:10 pm

Enter your comments here

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:10 pm

3-0 Colorado, bottom of the 3rd, bases loaded 1 out, looks like the season may be over folks, officially

Curt

October 1st, 2009
4:12 pm

Can anybody see us trading for Uggla and moving Prado to first for next year? Uggla would give you a right handed power bat that is virtually a lock to hit .260 with 30 HRs. He would be easy to acquire since the Marlins are likely to not be able to afford him. Sure this means we would have to let LaRoche walk but we are already very left handed and signing LaRoche would only add to that problem. Switch back and forth between lefty, righty, lefty and righty with Chipper, Uggla, McCann and Escobar would be a nice middle of the order. Thoughts?

**DOB, what do you think about this possibility?**

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:13 pm

Parra just walked in a run against the opposing pitcher, 4-0 Rockies

Dumbfound

October 1st, 2009
4:13 pm

Still early, I have a good feeling about this.

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:14 pm

Curt, I cannot see the Marlins trading within the division, especially not to the Braves

Preston Hannatized

October 1st, 2009
4:14 pm

Dave — If I missed it, my bad, but did the Norton PH at bat come up at Bobby’s post-game? It’s not like it lost the game but you have to know that Braves Nation – what there is of it – cannot believe Norton hasn’t been DFA’d months ago. Bobby has his insanely loyal man-crushes – Keith Lockhart, Pete Orr and now Norton. If the question didn’t come up, why not? Thanks.

Braveheart

October 1st, 2009
4:14 pm

I’m just not sure how much trade value Vazquez has. Don’t see trading him to anyone within the NL East. Don’t see trading him to the AL East since the Yanks and Bosox likely think him soft from prior experiences with him in that rivalry, and it doesn’t seem like it makes any sense for anyone else within that division to trade for him since he won’t put them over the top. He’s got a no trade clause to the West Coast. Yeah, he may waive it, but having to negotiate that waiver discounts the value West Coast teams would be willing to offer the Braves to trade for him.

That kind of just leaves you with the AL & NL Central teams. Right off the bat, you can eliminate Cincy, Cleveland, KC, Minnesota, and the Pittsburgh from likely destinations because of money and/or likelihood that acquiring Vazquez will make any bit of a difference in their chances of success, and also remove the White Sox because of his history with that franchise. Maybe also remove the Cubs because of what his rep is in Chitown, and because he just doesn’t seem like the kind of guy who would thrive pitching for an ahole like Pinella. That kind of just leaves you with St. Louis, Milwaukee, Houston and Detroit.

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:15 pm

Parra just walked in another run, 5-0 Rockies, bottom of the 3rd, season is over folks, unless the Brewers have a miracle up their sleeve.

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:16 pm

Preston, why would DOB or any other reporter bring up a non-factoring Norton about just because BLOG central or Braves nation doesnt approve of it??? What an assanine question.

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:17 pm

Not Norton about, Norton at bat, sorry, lol

O.J.

October 1st, 2009
4:18 pm

Trade Vazquez to the Brewers for Ryan Braun, problem solved

McFann =Ô=

October 1st, 2009
4:20 pm

Soph

Alrighty…ready? Wish MB would post a new Braves blog for us to jump into. Wanna be sure he’ll see it so he cann defend himself. :lol:

And yeah, jeffrey’d Nerf Gun is no match for us. :roll: I’ve got a BMac signature bat, ya know…

MattyRoss

October 1st, 2009
4:21 pm

Well, it was a good ride. Might go to the Dodgers/Rox with my Braves hat this weekend anyway, try to give them a little bad mojo. Now that I’m thinking about it…don’t really want to see the Phils or Cards there either. Or Yanks, Sox, Tigers, or Angels. Uhh…go Dodgers?

YE19

October 1st, 2009
4:23 pm

UGGLA… And you guys thougt KJ was bad defensively? His name is DAAAAAAN UGGGGLAAAA (in the obnoxious Marlins announcer voice). Aside from his incompetence on defense, he doesn’t hit for enough AVG. I’ll take PRADO, thanks.

DAP

October 1st, 2009
4:23 pm

curtSure this means we would have to let LaRoche walk but we are already very left handed and signing LaRoche would only add to that problem.

first of all, we are not to left handed, and second, how would signing laroche add to the problem? he is already on the team. as for your idea, id rather move uggla to first than prado.

AZBravoFan

October 1st, 2009
4:28 pm

Hey DOB,
In light of the Brewers flameout so far today, is there any chance they would shut down Hanson since they’re worried about his arm and innings totals? Maybe let Medlen and/or KK take it?

Tiger Woods

October 1st, 2009
4:29 pm

YE19

Exactly, no defense, it would be like KJ all over again out there. He is pathetic.

Braveheart

October 1st, 2009
4:29 pm

CB, I’m kinda concerned that they perhaps already blew it with Heyward. Garret Anderson hit in the heart of the order all darn season, and hit .233 with a friggin’ .626 OPS with RISP this season, plus he played lousy defense, didn’t hustle, didn’t run the bases well. Can’t wait until I never have to see that bum in a Braves uni again. If he just sucked because he was old that would’ve been one thing, but seeing that sorry loaf sit out there in left in Fenway with his hands on his knees refusing to budge to back up the play right freaking in front of him when that ball somehow got between Chipper and Yunel, well, the guy’s a bum forever in my book for that.

An extra two months of Heyward and an extra two months of Hanson may have been what this team needed to overcome what Frenchy, Garret, Schafer and KJ did to cause this team to fall just short. But I understand the highly legitimate financial and developmental concerns involved with rushing Heyward and Hanson to the majors. It’s just that if I’ve got Dwight Gooden and Daryl Strawberry sitting there in the minors, and I’m watching JoJo, Medlen, and Garret Anderson p!ss away my best shot at October in 4 seasons, I’m gonna call up Doc and Straw even if it maybe costs me in the long run.

Efrim

October 1st, 2009
4:30 pm

Trade Vazquez to the Brewers for Ryan Braun, problem solved

Yeah, that’d be nice…..

BravesfaninWis

October 1st, 2009
4:34 pm

Seeing as though the Braves are pretty much out of the running for the playoffs now, I would bench Matt Diaz the rest of the way for that costly mistake he made last night.. If you are that far up the line, go.. The worst thing that could have happened is that he gets thrown out at HP, but then at least he tried to tie the game up.. Instead, he looked like a deer in the head lights and gets thrown out trying to get back to 3rd base.. The sad part about that is, he would have tied the game up had he went to HP and we may have won that game.. Now we are left to wonder what could have been.. The Rockies only need to win 1 game or have the Braves lose 1 game to wrap it up.. While its possible that LA could sweep the Rockies, I see them beating the Brewers tonight to end it all..

BravesfaninWis

October 1st, 2009
4:36 pm

If the Brewers would agree to a Javy Vazquez for Ryan Braun trade, I would do that in a heartbeat.. I highly doubt though they would even consider that trade.. Actually, I think they would flat out hang up on the Braves..

Jonas

October 1st, 2009
4:38 pm

Season Over Folks….Tonight Line up:
1- Gregor Blanco CF
2- Kelly Johnson 2b
3- Martin Prado 3b
4- Greg Norton 1b
5- Clif Sammond C
6- Omar Infante CF
7- Reid Gorecki LF
8- Brook Conrad SS
9- Manny Acosta P

Anders

October 1st, 2009
4:38 pm

Here’s how far the Mets have slipped. After the Braves swept the Nationals last weekend to drop their record to make the Nationals 9-28 with a 5.68 ERA over 37 games, the Nationals turned around and won three in a row this week against the Mets while holding them to eight runs (DOB’s Blog)

Bye-bye Dan Warthen.

DAP

October 1st, 2009
4:40 pm

hey anders, did you hear they are cutting ticket prices at citifield? they must be begging thier fans to come out next season….

Bat Masterson

October 1st, 2009
4:40 pm

AZBravoFan
October 1st, 2009
4:28 pm

KK and Medlen have both pitched in the past 2 days.

BravesfaninWis

October 1st, 2009
4:41 pm

Our season is over, the Rockies are winning 5-0 over the Brewers right now..

Jonas

Who is playing RF for us tonight if Blanco and Infante are both in CF?:)

McFann =Ô=

October 1st, 2009
4:42 pm

Wow! I didn’t even know we had a guy named Clif Sammond!

Brett Esterson

October 1st, 2009
4:42 pm

BravesfaninWis – season over before tonight. Rockies have a day game right now and up 5-0. Parra walked the opposing pitcher twice, once with the bases loaded.

Anders

October 1st, 2009
4:42 pm

DAP- When they get to 50 % off or a $1 I’ll give you a call. {:

BTW- they sold over 3 million tickets this year. I think they’ll be ok.

Jonas

October 1st, 2009
4:46 pm

Bobby Make a Mistake in the Line Up two CF and the Guy is not in the Roster…The Game will call off for Boby Mistake…national WIN

jeffrey d

October 1st, 2009
4:46 pm

Hey, Rally’s back out.

Jerry

October 1st, 2009
4:46 pm

No free agents needed in Atlanta. We want to trade. We have six starting pitchers, several position players to which we are not married.
Send a package for a package. Wren is going to get dozens of calls.

Anders

October 1st, 2009
4:47 pm

BTW- I’d can Jerry Manuel too. I’d hire Bobby V back and Rick Peterson for that matter. The guy squeezed 15 wins a piece out of Maine and Perez. The man’s obviously a magician!

Let’s get this party started for 2010.

Brett Esterson

October 1st, 2009
4:49 pm

Brewers pitching finally got the pitcher Cook out. Nice work.

Jersey Gil

October 1st, 2009
4:49 pm

Anders: What it the latest on Jose Reyes..Did you think he is lost for 2010?…..

Gone Viral

October 1st, 2009
4:55 pm

I had the worst dream last night. The Braves had the bases loaded with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning. There was a wild pitch that didn’t go very far from the plate and the runner at third…ah, who cares. It was just a bad dream, right? RIGHT???

AZBravoFan

October 1st, 2009
4:55 pm

Bat Masterson: Yeah, but they each probably have 3 innings in them. Doesn’t really matter who pitches after that.

Icky Thump/WBC

October 1st, 2009
4:58 pm

When the Rox win today and clinch, get ready to see Norton paly out the string at 1st Base.

Soph

October 1st, 2009
4:59 pm

Ok, Anders, I have a good one for you – I just got into an argument with a guy in my department. He claimed to be a Mets fan throughout the year. Now, he still says he’s a Mets fan but he’s cheering for the Yankees in the postseason. His reasoning is that whenever teams in New York play against anyone outside of New York he has to cheer for the NY team. :roll:

I think his theory is pretty stupid. I argued with him for ten minutes about this. Does this make you sick? :-D

wjones

October 1st, 2009
5:02 pm

“When the Rox win today and clinch, get ready to see Norton paly out the string at 1st Base.”

You may laugh at me, but I think it would have been a good idea to have started him every couple of weeks to give him some ab’s. I think it might have helped his hitting. How many games did he start this year? One? He started several last year, and was a very good pinch-hitter.

Dumbfound

October 1st, 2009
5:02 pm

Braun homerun 5-1

Soph

October 1st, 2009
5:03 pm

McFann – I say we attack tonight. I can pay better attention when I’m at home. I’m glad Rally’s feeling better.

Lou Vales

October 1st, 2009
5:04 pm

Dear Tim and Jim(From the Other Blog), I don’t know if you are kidding, but if you are serious, I would like to tell you Jeremy Hermida could not hit 30 HR’s if they set up a ballpark in the parking lot behind Houston’s Restaurant on Peachtree. In fact Hermida would be hard pressed to hit 30 HR’s if they put an expansion team on the Sea of Tranquility on the lunar surface.

Jeremy Hermida is an underachieving, oafish, plodding, disinterested FLOP. A FLOP, of such proportion, as to bring into question the method of scouting high school baseball players. EVERY scout who ever files a report on a high school hitter will always have the spectre of Jeremy Hermida lurking in the recesses of his mind.

PLEASE!! PLEASE!! Atlanta sign Jeremy Hermida. Maybe he will take a home town discount but just realize in Hermida’s case the discount would not be worthwhile UNLESS it comes with a $3.00 a year price tag.

Anders

October 1st, 2009
5:05 pm

Jersey Gil – No the early reports were wrong. The tendon issue he had is fine. He was running at 100%. He was actually hoping to play this weekend. (Personally I think that would have been crazy)He just pulled his hamstring as you can normally do. It wasn’t the same injury. He’ll be back 100% for spring training is what they’re reporting now. That’s what I heard on the FAN anyway, as much as it pained Fat Francesa to report it as he revels in the Mets misery. (You guys can relate to that){:

Icky Thump/WBC

October 1st, 2009
5:06 pm

wjones,

No, I think you make a good point and if Bobby was intent on proving that Norton could get the job done it may be something he(Cox) should’ve thought of, but he(Cox) didn’t.

Herschel Talker

October 1st, 2009
5:06 pm

DOB:

WE SURE COULD HAVE USED THAT RUN IN THE BOTTOM OF THE 6TH WHEN WITH FIRST AND SECOND AND NO OUTS, COX SENT UP NORTON AGAIN!!! FOR THE LOVE OF THE ALMIGHTY, HOW MANY TIMES DOES THIS MAN HAVE TO SEE NORTON FAIL BEFORE USING KELLY JOHNSON OR BROOKS CONRAD IN THAT SITUATION?

DOB, PLEASE ANSWER ME THIS; I THINK THIS IS A FAIR QUESTION. HOW IS IT THAT KELLY JOHNSON, OF WHOM I AM NOT A FAN, IS IN COX’S DOGHOUSE AFTER HIS POOR PERFORMANCES, BUT GREG NORTON, WHOSE HITTING HAS BEEN FAR WORSE, IS NOWHERE NEAR COX’S DOGHOUSE??? SOMEONE PLEASE THROW OUT SOME IDEAS.

I CAN’T IMAGINE ONE OTHER MANAGER IN BASEBALL WOULD HAVE KEPT SENDING NORTON OUT IN THESE SPOTS. I ALMOST FEEL SORRY FOR NORTON AT THIS POINT (NOT TOTALLY SORRY, AS THE GUY IS STILL MAKING SERIOUS BUCK FOR DOING NOTHING).

THERE ARE TWO OPTIONS WITH COX REGARDING HIS USE OF GREG NORTON: EITHER COX IS A COMPLETE IMBECILE OR COX IS A MENTAL CASE. IN EITHER CASE, HE IS UNFIT TO BE THE MANAGER. WHAT A DISGRACE.

POOR MATT DIAZ, WHO WORKS HIS TAIL OFF, IS GOING TO BE THE BRUNT OF EVERYONE’S FRUSTRATION, BUT THE GUY WAS TRYING TO MAKE A PLAY, JUST MAKE A BAD SPLIT-SECOND DECISION. THE REAL WRATH HERE SHOULD BE VENTED AT THE LUNATIC WE HAVE STEERING THE SHIP. I’D RATHER HAVE THE CAPTAIN OF THE TITANIC STEERING THIS SHIP THAN BOOBY COX.

WHAT A DISGRACE THAT THIS MAN IS GOING TO GET THE OPPORTUNITY TO FLUSH 2010 RIGHT DOWN THE CRAPPER ALSO!

N8

October 1st, 2009
5:08 pm

“Gotta wonder whether not calling up Hanson until June cost the Braves a playoff spot. They were 3-6 when JoJo and Medlen started. They are 12-8 when Hanson starts. Maybe they’d have gone 5-4 or 6-3 if Hanson started in those 9 starts wasted away with Medlen and JoJo. Hopefully, he needed those two extra months of development in AAA. Otherwise Super 2 concerns may have cost the Braves October and who knows when their next best shot will be.” Braveheart

Posted pretty much the same thing on the other blog, Braveheart. Somebody had asked for “one good reason” why the Brave will do better and make the playoffs next year, and I said Tommy Hanson. Having him for a full year will be good for this team.

If you “pro-rate” Tommy’s winning percentage over those 9 starts (that Jo Jo and Medlen made), it would come to 5.4 wins. So worst case scenario, we’re still only two back of the Rockies.

Obviously, anything could have happened in those games. Maybe Hanson loses all 9 of them, and his mental well being is ruined like Joey Devine. LOL

I don’t buy that for a minute. But I’m willing to accept that perhaps while saving money in the future as well, those two months in AAA may have jumpstarted Hanson’s career. Gotta say that to myself or I get pissed off thinking about it.

I stated something along the line of thinking that had Prado started at 2B from get go, and Francoeur been benched a month earlier, along with hanson starting from day one that instead of wondering which handful of games cost us the playoffs, we’d all be discussing and arguing who should start game one of the playoffs as Cox set his rotation up.

IMO, Cox’s stubborness (and possibly Wren/Liberty Media trying to save some bucks and retain Hanson for mone more year – who can blame them even if that is the case?), cost us the playoffs this year. It’s that simple.

Sure, I blame the players that stunk, for stinking. But in the end Cox could have shuffled the lineup more and not been so loyal. I think I posted something the other day that Prado had as many hits in July as KJ did up to July (or maybe it was April and May). Either way, having KJ at the top of the order was borderline criminal.

Anyhow. To make a short point long, I agree with you. :-)

Mixxo

October 1st, 2009
5:08 pm

My Gawd!

How come the Rox are so freekin’ good?

….and we’re not.

Anders

October 1st, 2009
5:08 pm

Soph- There are folks here who have that I’ll root for the NY team mentality when their favorite team is out of it. Trust me I am not one of them. I’m a huge Rangers hockey fan as well. Back in the 80’s when the Islanders played the Russians I used to root for ties and lots of injuries. Does that clear it up for you?

N8

October 1st, 2009
5:11 pm

“5- Clif Sammond C” Jonas

Who the hell is Clif Sammond? Perhaps you should go hang out with your brothers. We’re talking baseball here.

Lou Vales

October 1st, 2009
5:11 pm

Dear DOB, You had it right. I NEVER thought they would come this close. They had me scared Blankless. It will be a lot of fun covering them the next few years–Pains me to say that.

I believe you are taking the right tact in mentioning the Braves are going to target right handed hitters WITHOUT naming names. Would not want to aggravate Tim Hudson again. Even if you hear that Holliday is in town to ink a deal and the Braves have him in a penthouse at the Ritz–Don’t Say A Word. Because of course IF he changed his mind it would be your fault.

MAYBE Huddy(Hate silly nicknames) can pitch a year unencumbered and not concern himself with journalistic practices.

jim

October 1st, 2009
5:11 pm

Someone on the last blog suggested using Lowe or Huddy as the closer next year. At this stage of their careers, neither is a strikeout pitcher. Smoltz went from starter to closer and back to starter and flourished in both roles, but Smoltz could throw in the mid 90’s and featured a hard slider. Huddy and Lowe are sinkerball pitchers who get ground balls, but work deep counts with a lot of foul balls and have a lot of base runners. They don’t miss a lot of bats, and they don’t have a lot of short pitch innings that a closer needs if he is to be available on a regular basis. Not the qualities you look for in a closer.

Pete

October 1st, 2009
5:11 pm

Enter your comments here
First, the Rockies are TWICE the team the Braves are. Not even close.
Next, how does any sane person expect the Braves to make it to the post season stranding approx. 1500 base runners over the season.
Beyond pathetic.

TnBrian(Vazquez ace 2010)

October 1st, 2009
5:12 pm

OMG, y’all are still giving updates on Rockies games? Season was over two nights ago when the “believe” boys got home & forgot how to hit.

A guy who might be available is Carlos Lee because the Astros have one of the weaker minor leagues in baseball, so they might finally grasp reality & trade off one of their superstars for propects. He’s 32-33 years old, so I wouldn’t go all out for him, but he’d give the lineup a legit, everyday cleanup hitter. Yes, I’d trade Freeman/ Kawa/ Kj and maybe even Schafer if they threw in a good RP. KK and his $7.3m a year need to go… somewhere.

McFann =Ô=

October 1st, 2009
5:12 pm

Soph

Works for me…During the game we cann alternate between blogs. :P

And yes, Rally has come back out…he heard about the “attack”, and figured he better be ready…that’s why he’s got his legs spread way out (well, that plus the fact that he’s still nervous).

Piedmont Blues

October 1st, 2009
5:14 pm

Lou Vales would have a cow, but MLBTR linked to an article suggesting that the Marlins might not offer Jeremy Hermida a contract.

Brett Esterson

October 1st, 2009
5:14 pm

The 2 huge differences between the Rockies and Braves:

1) Today through 6 innings, their 3-4-5 hitters are 8-10 with 4 RBI. When was the last time we did that? Would have happened if Escobar and LaRoche moved up in the order but that never happened either.

2) They have 28 homers on the bench with Smith and Gonzales (37 if you add Atkins who started today but sat out most of the year in leiu of Stewart). We have Norton and KJ on ours.

Lou Vales

October 1st, 2009
5:15 pm

Would someone provide a list of guys who WOULD NOT look good in Braves uniforms next year. That would simplify the paperwork.

Herschel Talker

October 1st, 2009
5:15 pm

N8 – You are completely right.

Mixxo

October 1st, 2009
5:16 pm

Pete –

I knew that. I just wanted to hear somebody else finally say it…..w/o the excuses.

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