Braves blow 3-0 lead as skid reaches six games

St. Louis – They showed up Monday not with heads hung, but rather full of optimism, determined to put a five-game skid behind them and start cranking out some wins.

But after taking a three-run lead to the sixth inning, the Braves found another way to lose as their agonizing early season skid continued unabated.

The St. Louis Cardinals scored four runs in the sixth through eighth innings to pull out a 4-3 series-opening win at Busch Stadium, giving the Braves a six-game slide to equal the one that closed their 2009 season.

“It’s so frustrating,” said second baseman Martin Prado, who lined into an inning-ending double play  with two on in the fourth, when the ball sailing a foot  either way might’ve added a run or two to a 3-0 lead.

Instead they failed to tack on runs, and eventually Albert Pujols and Co. rallied to beat the last-pace Braves (8-11), who remained three games behind division leader Philadelphia in the closely bunched National League East.

After the Cardinals scored two runs in the seventh to tie the score at 3-3, they scored their winning run in the eighth on Yadier Molina’s ground-rule double against reliever Takashi Saito (0-1).

“It seems like when you go through a rough stretch, little things get magnified,” said Braves starter Tim Hudson. “That Prado line drive could have been a back-breaker [for the Cardinals]. They got a break there.”

Hudson was charged with three runs, six hits and three walks in six-plus innings, the last of his runs scoring in the seventh on Colby Rasmus’ homer off Hudson and Bryan Anderson’s two-out double off reliever Peter Moylan.

Hudson had wanted badly to end a losing streak that began with his last start, and for much of the night he and the Braves seemed poised to do it.

He had a 3-0 lead before giving up a run in the sixth and the homer to Rasmus in the seventh. After walking the next batter, Yadier Molina, Hudson was replaced by Moylan.

Molina put himself in scoring position with a stolen base, the thick catcher taking advantage of Moylan’s slow, sweeping delivery and pitch selection – a slider to Brendan Ryan, a pitch that doesn’t get to the plate as quickly as Moylan’s sinker.

With Molina at second, Moylan struck out Ryan for the second out before Anderson’s first-pitch, pinch-hit double to left drove in the tying run.

“He ambushed me, swung at the first pitch,” Moylan said. “I’ve got to tip my cap to him. But it just [ticks] me off that Huddy pitched his [butt] off and I couldn’t keep them from scoring.”

The Braves got back-to-back two-out walks from Troy Glaus and Jason Heyward in the eighth inning, but Melky Cabrera flied out.

Saito came in to pitch the eighth, and Pujols doubled to start the inning. One out later, Rasmus was intentionally walked.

Molina made the Braves pay when he bounced a double over the fence.

“We came today with a new face, we felt like a new team,” Prado said. “For some reason, once we got on the field it didn’t happen. We’re trying our best to win games, and it’s just not happening. Everything feels so relaxed when we’re winning. But right now, everything’s going the wrong way. It stinks.”

The Braves got two hits from the slumping Glaus in his first game back at St. Louis, where he had 27 homers and 99 RBIs for the Cardinals in 2008 before missing most of last season recovering from shoulder surgery.

He was 3-for-29 (.103) in 10 games before Monday, when Glaus singled in the second and third innings. His third-inning hit drove in the Braves’ second run, after Brian McCann’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly.

Heyward struck out with two runners on to end the third inning, the second inning in a row that the Braves stranded two runners.

They went 3-for-22 with runners in scoring position while getting swept in a weekend series against the New York Mets to begin the seven-game trip.

The Braves entered Monday with a league-worst .228 team batting average, and have scored a total of nine runs during their six-game slide.

They have gone homerless in eight of their past nine games and scored 17 runs during that 2-7 stretch.

The Braves extended their early lead to 3-0 on a fourth-inning double by Nate McLouth, who came in batting .146 with only two RBIs for the season.

They still had two runners on when Prado lined to third baseman David Freese to start a double play. Yunel Escobar was caught off first base on the play, but the ball was hit so hard that nobody faulted Escobar.

“Escobar played a super game,” manager Bobby Cox said of the recently maligned shortstop, who made some sensational defensive plays Monday while going 1-for-4 with a walk in his first game batting leadoff this season.

“He saved us two runs, one on a play to his right and one to his left.”

123 comments Add your comment

Dumbfound

April 27th, 2010
1:01 am

What ?! I’m first ?!

Tomahawkin

April 27th, 2010
1:03 am

First?

Damn It’s too Late…Gawd I miss Central time!

VA Braves Fan

April 27th, 2010
1:07 am

Is Terry Pendleton somehow to blame for this lack of offense? I’ve seen many hitters come to town and have their average drop.

Cannon

April 27th, 2010
1:11 am

@VA Braves Fan, and don’t forget about Kelly Johnson who left and is now leading the NL in doubles, and has 7HR already. Oh and what about Francouer who couldn’t hit a lick here in ATL, but now has a somewhat respectable average with the Mets. FIRE PENDLETON NOW! Before we dig ourselves a hole too deep to get out of.

Doc Holiday

April 27th, 2010
1:11 am

You just got to love your last place braves………….The thing I love the most about them, is that they are giving Cox the way out of baseball he deserves………

Greatness and Cox, should never, ever be put in the same sentence. If he was half the great they say he is, this wouldnt be happening. Can you name a manager that was referred to as great an had 5 straight horrendous season as Cox have had? (Im including 2010 because we are in need of about 85 miracles to call this a good season). He has failed to make the adjustment on his teams to make them click. And Im not talking teams full of loosers……this years and last years team are and were pretty good. As always, just pure lack of execution when it really matters. He just cant make his players click………..players as good as chipper, McCann, Tex, LaR, JHey, Yunel. Superb pitching staffs last season and this season…….and what do we have to show for that? scum. Make excuses for the old man, but the one thing in common besides chipper in all this failure is Cox………..

And as someone said a few nights ago………who would love to have a boss that lets you do whatever you want at work and not put any pressure on you?
Last place on a division that figures the muts, fish and nats? after almost a month of play? Come on……….We are talking a business of millions of $$$ that are being played like a sunday afternoon neighborhood game.

Department of Redundancy Department

April 27th, 2010
1:14 am

I don’t “like” Escobar hitting leadoff, but it does bring his patience back we are used to seeing.

count_schemula

April 27th, 2010
1:18 am

Escobar was doubled off first. It happens, I know, but it was not great timing for him.

VA Braves Fan

April 27th, 2010
1:19 am

If Bobby has a fault its loyalty to the end. TP deserves respect for what he did as a Braves player but hitting coach may not be his thing. We obviously need a change but it seems like the Braves are grooming Pendleton for the managers spot after Bobby.

JohnSmith

April 27th, 2010
1:25 am

There’s no way TP will be given the manager’s job, especially after the way things have gone thus far. Still, even if he did become manager, there’d be at least one silver lining for angry Braves fans: the team would have to get a new hitting coach!

san diego dawg

April 27th, 2010
2:12 am

baby steps. Glaus had 2 hits & 1 RBI. Melky had 2 hits. McLouth had 1 extra base hit & 1 RBI. The starting pitching & bullpen has been outstanding, aside from Lowe. Tomorrow is just the 20th game. These guys will bust out & be on a tear soon.

Marc D

April 27th, 2010
3:18 am

baby steps. Glaus had 2 hits & 1 RBI. Melky had 2 hits. McLouth had 1 extra base hit & 1 RBI. The starting pitching & bullpen has been outstanding, aside from Lowe. Tomorrow is just the 20th game. These guys will bust out & be on a tear soon. –san diego dawg

I gotta admit, I feel optimistic about a few things that happened in that game too. It was the first game that our pitching couldn’t hold when it got late and frankly they deserve one at this point cause our pitching (Lowe aside) has been spectacular. Losing our sixth in a row stings and I’m not saying that the Braves can be hopeful about their chances for a wild card berth based on tonight’s performance, but at least we put some runs on the board and didn’t look like the bad news bears all night long. I’m upset we lost, but at least I don’t feel like three hours of my life was robbed from me know what I’m sayin’.

joedub

April 27th, 2010
4:25 am

i thought cox should have brought in o’flaherty for moylan when larussa pinch hit the lefty, anderson. he was ready wasn’t he?? we saw him warming up. wtf?

ScottBravesfan

April 27th, 2010
4:28 am

Maybe Glaus and and Melky will start to get it going. It only takes one of those guys to start getting some hits and the offense will start to turn around. I would still like to see Prado hitting lead off with Escobar second. Nate Mclouth is was an all star and a good player in Pittsburgh and was good in Atlanta until he hurt his hamstring, there is no way he can continue to be awful and hit under .200. He will turn it around it only sucks that Chris Carpenter is going tomorrow for the cardinals because he’s one of the best in the league.

bbua

April 27th, 2010
4:52 am

Let’s face it this is not a very good baseball team. I made the statement yesterday they were probably no better than a third place team. Correction they are no better than a last place team.

bbua

April 27th, 2010
4:57 am

Doc Holliday I can name a hall of fame manager whose team finished last on several occassions and had 5 straight world series titles between the losing season. The name is Casey Stengel. Managers have to have players to win and the braves aren’t there yet.

terry mcguirk

April 27th, 2010
5:13 am

APRIL 8 2008 FORBES MAGAZINE
“Malone said that he has “set no limit on the payroll.” Malone: “We won’t be cheap. We’d like to win. If [McGuirk] calls up and says they need something, they’ll get it.” Malone has “given his baseball people all the money they need, upping the club payroll from $87[M] to $102[M], the tenth highest in the majors.” Liberty President & CEO Greg Maffei: “I think the management, if anything, is reasonably more empowered now.”
YOU LIED. SELL THE BRAVES . AND GO TO HELL. PERIOD.

ltdbrave

April 27th, 2010
5:29 am

I cannot wait till Cox retires. Maybe they will get a manager that knows when a sinker ball pitcher is tiring and his pitch is hanging. Cox never seems to know or refuses to yank Hudson and inevitably gives up runs. It’s going to be a long season.

MikeY

April 27th, 2010
7:11 am

Why isn’t Hinske getting more AB’s against right-handers? Maybe not a straight platoon, but he should get about half the AB’s.

And why oh why is TP still employed?

RBrave

April 27th, 2010
7:37 am

O.K wheres the wall to wall at nauseaum coverage of the great, all world Heyward? Review his last week of games, but have 1 good game and its back to his greatness. One good about the slump I’m not hearing about the legend. Has TP ruined him already ?

G

April 27th, 2010
7:44 am

I’m not going to say that Bobby Cox was not a great coach at one time but the more I see him in the dugout lately, the more confused he looks. The game has changed, the players have changed and Bobby is left with a group of hybrid players he doesn’t understand. I remember the same look on Joe Torre’s face after he let a pitcher stay one guy too many. We thought Joe was done back then but he needed a change. Bobby’s leadership style is not good for this Braves team. He’s way too protective of his players when he needs to be getting up their faces. They’ve gotten used to losing and nobody’s making it uncomfortable for them. The Braves needed a changed from Joe Torre and now they need a change from Bobby Cox. Thanks for the memories but “what have you done for me lately?”

Trey

April 27th, 2010
7:44 am

Doc, you act like Bobby can predict how a pitcher can pitch before a game. Hudson only gave up three runs and Saito only gave up one run. Our pitchers did not do horrible, our hitters just could not get enough runs. Even if Bobby did take players out for other players, there is no telling if they would have done the same or better. It’s funny, you act like you can manage better than Bobby, but I do not see you on the field making decisions.

MitchC

April 27th, 2010
7:45 am

The only solace for the Braves is that it is only April, and they are only three games out. I just don’t want to see again what happened last season, where we get so buried in the first half, that we fall so far behind in the division and wild card races, and then put on a late charge, only to fall short.

Even good teams go through bad stretches in a 162 game season. I remember when the 1988 Mets got off to a blazing start, and then played 500 ball for about three months during the summer, before putting on an August and September charge to put the division away.

On “paper” this team has talent. Even though we scored three runs last night, such is not enoigh to win consistently in the major leages. A team needs to be able to score four or five runs a night, at least, to be competetive in the major leagues.

I hope FW gets us a hitter in the near future. As I said yesterday, I agree with Jeff Schultz thzt Gonzalez would be a great idea. I hope we can get him soon, before this season falls so completely apart, that we have no chance to recover.

Braves Fan

April 27th, 2010
7:48 am

Our guys can’t bat .100 forever. The starting pitching has been good, and our bullpen has also. We’ve hung around .500 ball with absolutely zero clutch hitting (minus 3 games). Some balls will start to fall our way, and people like bbua and ltdbrave will talk about what a great team we have. We play 162 games a year, not 30. I understand the lack of offense has been alarming, but if you’ve been watching the games, you will see that we are making some good contact in some crucial situations and it’s just not going our way. If we take two from St. Louis, we can sweep Houston at home and we are right back to where we should be. I know it’s tough, but be patient.

sons of rick matula

April 27th, 2010
7:54 am

Has any Braves pitcher gotten more credit (and money) for doing less than Tim Hudson? Quality guy, good in the community, etc etc — but he’s been only slightly better than average in all his years in a Braves uni. I hope I’m wrong — but pencil Huddy in for a 12-12 season.

Chip

April 27th, 2010
8:15 am

Alrighty then, the Braves scored 3 runs….Looks like the offense has hit high gear.

Braves are setting this season up perfectly. Fall way behind in the standings, only to make a run when it’s too little and too late to matter.

19 games played and only 12 home runs from a team that relies solely on the 3 run dingers. Awesome.

Fans will probably show up in record numbers for the next Braves home-stand to watch this horribly coached team look tired & boring.

Go Braves !!!

Ghostrider

April 27th, 2010
8:17 am

Sad but True….Where the Braves are right now, I beleive that is where they will finish the Season, dead last. I hope I’m wrong but I don’t think so.

ronaldh

April 27th, 2010
8:18 am

Come on David O’Brien, it’s time for you and others in the Atlanta press to start saying what every else knows. When are you going to begin to state in print that it’s time for Chipper Jones to step aside and retire? All through spring training we kept hearing about how we were going to see “the old Chipper Jones.” On opening day the braves television announces kept on saying how Chipper assured them that we were going to see “the old Chipper Jones.” Well, that’s exactly what we are seeing, the OLD Chipper Jones, the “very old and over the hill” Chipper Jones. If they Atlanta press is honest they will begin to point this out. If they don’t, their credibility suffers.

Mooseberg

April 27th, 2010
8:20 am

TP – perfect nickname for a coach that is worth as much as a roll of it.

Marc in FL

April 27th, 2010
8:22 am

Yawn… You people bore me. Again with the “fire Cox, fire TP!”

The Braves front office does not read the blogs. The only people you are bothering with this absurd repetition are other bloggers trying to have some form of intellectual baseball talk.

Not trying to censor anyone, but if you say it once then it has been said. No need to spam; most blogs would ban you for spamming anyway.

In other news… I think we’d be more likely to get Lyle Overbay than we would Adrian Gonzalez. Hopefully Glaus will start hitting and it won’t be an issue.

georgiadawgg

April 27th, 2010
8:24 am

PEOPLE IN ATLANTA, BOYCOTT THE REST OF THIS SEASON. BECAUSE THE BRAVES CAN’T WIN. THEY STINK. BUT WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT, WHEN YOU HAVE A SACKFUL OF DOG TURDS FOR MANAGERS.

Joe Simpson the Great

April 27th, 2010
8:25 am

Speed doesn’t slump. The Braves have NO speed unless it’s of the pill variety.

carlchamblee

April 27th, 2010
8:26 am

Typical Braves/Booby Cox mentality after the loss. Hudson says tough break on the Prado liner. Boo hoo it was still a 3-0 game and he and the pen coughed up the lead while the offense went back to sleep. THere were plenty of breaks that went the Braves way too last night.

SC Smith

April 27th, 2010
8:27 am

Huddy has pitched well so far, three runs given up by him should give him a win. Sometimes Braves have to score 4 or 5 runs. Look at the scores of games this year and see what our record would be if we averaged 4.5 runs per game. Not counting the 16 run game. Overall pitching has been solid. Clutch hitting stinks.

Marc in FL

April 27th, 2010
8:28 am

The Howard deal is sickening as well. As Braves fans, we of all people know that one player is not enough to tip the scale of a team; we learned that with Tex. Almost every team not named Yankees or Red Sox has regretted at some point spending 18-25mil on a year on one guy.

What the Phillies did do right however was keep the length at 5 years. They will still be hard pressed to keep some their other stars over the next few years. I wonder how many good pitches Howard will get without Werth protecting him?

bignel

April 27th, 2010
8:39 am

get off TP back. the braves are coming out of their slump. they scored 3 runs monday. what more do you guys want. st louis was just lucky. braves hit the ball hard and cant help it the hits dont come at the right time or they just have a lapse of memory. they have only lost 6 in a row and have the lowest batting averave in the leauge. so chill out and give them a chance. ohhhh my bad, ive been listening to much to mr. coxs. they stink, the manage needs to go and TP needs to be playing instead of coaching. He would fit in with that line-up. Just wait till next year! oh wait a minute, we say that every year.

Mutts

April 27th, 2010
8:44 am

Here are a few issues: 1) No leadoff hitter; 2) after a great career Chipper is more of a liability in the field and at the plate than he is an asset; 3) Cabrera stinks (but so does Vasquez for the Yanks); it’s time to get rid of Pendleton as hitting coach (what do you expect from a guy with a .316 lifetime OBP?). I don’t know how to fix these things this year, so we may have to endure a 75-80 win season in 2010.

sonny

April 27th, 2010
8:46 am

We need to get rid of Terry Pendleton. Most company when you dept or area stuggles you get replaced

Sid Bream

April 27th, 2010
8:47 am

“Where were you when I slid?”

Stat guy

April 27th, 2010
9:05 am

Before last night, the Braves were 8-10. This means they are 1/9 of the way thru the season. Braves are on pace for a 72-90 record.
The sad thing about the Braves is that they can’t get anything going. We all know their offense is anemic, but they seem to do something good, then they run into a team on fire or a staff ace, (see Lincecum, Jimenez, Halladay & tonight, Carpenter followed by Wainwright tomorrow). It’s going to be hard to turn anything around this week in St. Louis. Hopefully Houston will be the answer this weekend, but they are catching fire with Berkman back.

Melvin Flowers Macon Georgia

April 27th, 2010
9:11 am

Here we go again wondering will the Braves be a contender in 2010.
A Blind Man can see the Braves Don’t have any power in their line up.
Chipper Jones bat is silent again this season, he need to retire and let someone else play in position at 3rd base.
I will not waste my time watching the Braves this season, one reason why is they play like little League kids. Move them to Warner Robins.
Braves Fans don’t waste your money this season with the Braves, go to Tampa Bay and watch a contender and a winning team.

Bradford

April 27th, 2010
9:12 am

As much as I hate to loose, I saw alot that made me feel better about this recent funk. Nate, Melky and Glaus had much better at bats last night than really since the season started. More importantly was yunel played a great game defensively. i still hate the losing streak, but at least I saw a glimpse that they could potentially come out of it.

Chip

April 27th, 2010
9:16 am

Marc in FL wrote, “The Braves front office does not read the blogs. ”

DOB, is this true?

Marc, I agree on all the blog redundancy about firing Cox & TP….That is getting old, but not only have the Braves not hit as a team, but the overall team play in the form of horrible defense to lack of effort has made this an extremely frustrating Braves team to watch.

Would be nice to see the Braves front office show some kind of concern by making some sort of shakeup to send a positive message to the frustrated fan base, instead of saying all is well, and doing nothing.

Don

April 27th, 2010
9:20 am

Even our great pitching is not good enough to carry Bobby Cox.

Brave Hokie

April 27th, 2010
9:22 am

Teams that lose 6 in row don’t go to the post season….
When these losers are winning 6/7 in row in Sept when they are out of it and playing other lame duck teams, don’t start telling me “We Believe” ~ I didn’t last season, and I don’t now…

Don

April 27th, 2010
9:23 am

Isn’t it strange that for the most part youg hitters who come up and players who are acquired from other teams continue to improve on most teams — but under Cox and Pendleton, for the most part they decline – get worse. Oh, you point to Chipper and McCann as arguments against this — Forget it, for both of them, it is their Dads who instruct them and help them with their problems.

Arkansas Transplant

April 27th, 2010
9:24 am

I hate to come back in here and say it again, but this team needs to move people now! Lets face it, some people are just winners and this team doesn’t have anyone like that. I know all of you know people you say, “they are the luckiest people” and even though they may not be the most talented they always find a way to win. Well, I think we can pretty much say this team doesn’t have a single player like that. It’s time to make a change.

Lets move Escobar, Mclouth and JoJo for Ellsbury and Scaturo. Then lets contact the Yanks and move Lowe and Marek for Vazquez.

Marc in FL

April 27th, 2010
9:26 am

I don’t blame people for expressing their frustrations Chip – I have myself as well. I was mainly aiming at the people that feel the need to post it 2-3 times per blog page.

If I’m not mistaken, Frank Wren himself said in an interview last year that the front office doesn’t pay attention to sports radio, TV, or columns because, to paraphrase, they know better than the fans do. Again, that’s a paraphrase.

Don

April 27th, 2010
9:27 am

This is Bobby Cox’s last season, and still some fans complain about his having won only ONE World Series in FOURTEEN Post Season Opportunities.
We should be counting our blessings.
We should be thinking about how luch we are to have the ONE World Series.
With Bobby Cox’s management procedures and lack thereof, we are extremely lucky and fortunate to EVEN HAVE the One.
The only thing that ebnables him to even win the ONE was Glavine pitching a SHUTOUT in the final game.

D-bird in Chucktown

April 27th, 2010
9:28 am

Maybe the Cox and TP bashers are right and next year will be better.
1. Hoss retired.
2. Freeman up.
3. Heyward seasoned.
4. New coaching staff ie manager and batting coach.
5. Solid starting pitching.
6. Sprinkle in a couple of FAs.

Poof, Division winners!!!

Arkansas Transplant

April 27th, 2010
9:30 am

The front office is well aware of what’s being said, trust me. They have to be in touch with their fan base. Sorry but they have no job without the support of the fans.

RHR

April 27th, 2010
9:32 am

They lost?! OMG. It was 3-0 Braves in the 6th or so when I was listening. Geeze. Guess I haven’t missed anything.

WK

April 27th, 2010
9:34 am

I was optimistic coming into this season, but now find myself facing reality. The reality (at least to me) is this: with the current roster, the Braves will only make the playoffs if several of their players have career years. I believe our pitching is good enough, but our offense is simply offensive. We have one true established star (McCann) and one fading star in C. Jones. Our other players are talented (Escobar, Prado, Diaz), but cannot catty a team. They are only complimentary players. In order to make the playoffs, these guys must all have career years. Heyward obviously will be a STAR, but he too needs a lot of help this year. I’m ready for changes to be made…….in coaching, at third, at first (play Hinske more), and we need another power bat. I think Bobby’s last year is going to be a disappointment. We could be several games under .500 by May. I hope I’m wrong.

steve

April 27th, 2010
9:35 am

Cox cost us another game last night because of bad managing, Hudson should have been pinch hit for in the top of the 7th inning and Moylan should have begun the 7th, also our defensive positioning that allowed Puhols weak ground ball down the 3rd base line was a joke, it should have been an easy out and would have if Chipper had been guarding the line but instead he was so far off the 3rd base line that it allowed a weak ground ball to go for a double and our demise. The team is not playing well right now but our poor management or lack of it is keeping us from at least winning games like last nights one that we should have won had the right moves been made.

Booby Cox

April 27th, 2010
9:38 am

Let’s go Ryno…

Marc in FL

April 27th, 2010
9:39 am

True Arkansas, they have a marketing department who’s job to listen to, understand, and communicate to fans and potential fans. The front office gets their feedback from these people, but it still looks like numbers and statistics from that viewpoint; I think the passion of the message is lost in translation.

bvillebaron

April 27th, 2010
9:42 am

The incredible news here is that the team is only 3 games out of first while suffering through this terrrible slump. I know this team doesn’t have an offense that even approximates the Phils, but they are not this bad.

39yrBravesFan

April 27th, 2010
9:45 am

Wowwwwww, that was sad.

COME ON BRAVES!!!

Chip

April 27th, 2010
9:45 am

Question ???

How did Chipper go from being out for a few days to not missing any time, except for the game he left early because of the injury?

I’m guessing Brian Jordan’s comments really made an impression on Chipper. Now, we need Smoltz or Glavine to come out and say publicly that his hitting & defense is atrocious. It’s pretty obvious that Chipper responds to negative publicity.

Maybe Chipper could & should have played in some of those games he sat out with over the years with his assortment of injuries.

TPic

April 27th, 2010
9:54 am

“How did Chipper go from being out for a few days to not missing any time, except for the game he left early because of the injury?”

I wondered the same thing. Jones stated (not the team) that he would likely miss SEVERAL games. How does he know this without even being diagnosed or treated. Then, lo and behold, he shows up for a prime time game. ?? Either he really wasn’t hurt that badly or he is a medical miracle. I’m going with the former.

Ghostrider

April 27th, 2010
10:05 am

Well I suppose it could be worse….Look at Baltimore, there 3 and 16, now that is what I call pathetic.

usnavyvolfaninva

April 27th, 2010
10:06 am

Enter your comments here

Chip

April 27th, 2010
10:09 am

Another Question ???

Would playing 1st base as opposed to 3rd base be more beneficial to a player in terms of the players longevity in the league, or would it be a wash?

usnavyvolfaninva

April 27th, 2010
10:11 am

darn it, hit enter after typing my username….

These guys aren’t gonna finish in last… 3rd is realistic, but their starters are going way too well to finish in last.

I have a hard time believing that the whole lineup is going to stay in this slump forever, and Heyward will start seeing better pitches once everyone else snaps out of it. As for whether TP is responsible for this slump or not, I’m neutral. I refuese to believe that everyone can just forget how to hit at the same time. something else is going on that no one outside the clubhouse knows about. I don’t know when or if we’ll ever know what it is, but does anyone honestly really think that an entire lineup just forgets how to hit all at the same time? and the errors? can’t blame those on TP. This team isn’t focused right now, which tells me something’s up. I know I sound like an alarmist, but to me it’s the only thing that makes sense.

Larry Jones

April 27th, 2010
10:12 am

I stink, but where else am I going to make $12 million a year and have people write down what I say?

usnavyvolfaninva

April 27th, 2010
10:16 am

WK…
I think that’s a fair assessment on your part… but even if they’re a few under.500 by May, that still leaves a lot of time for them to right the boat.
I don’t think age is the reason Chipper is a mainstay on the DL… there may be issues with his conditioning, but people tend to stay stronger and more flexible longer than they used too (40 is the new 30 and all that). Heck, Jamie Moyer is 47! He’s not doing to bad. My point is that either he’s not adhering to whatever s/c program they have or something else is going on. But I don’t think being 38 necessarily has much to do with it.

usnavyvolfaninva

April 27th, 2010
10:18 am

One other theory is maybe the undue pressure they are putting on themselves b/c it’s Bobby’s last season. I see a lot of guys going up looking like they have to hit one out of the park just to give the team a chance. I may be totally off the mark here, just kind of brainstorming.

usnavyvolfaninva

April 27th, 2010
10:19 am

…and I don’t necessarily subscribe to the payroll theory (see Florida Marlins– they’re the Wal-mart of the NL!).

Larry Jones

April 27th, 2010
10:21 am

I have decided that “Chipper” will retire immediately. However, Larry Jones will play out his contract.

Beans

April 27th, 2010
10:26 am

I don’t get why everyone wants Chipper to retire. Who are you going to play at 3B that’s any better? Remember we traded Elvis Adrus so Prado has to stay at second. Infante does okay now because he only hits when the pitching matchup is favorable, but he’s not an everyday 3 hole hitter and he certainly isn’t a permanent defensive option in the infield.

He gets hurt too often? Of all the position players on the current Braves roster, check out who played in the MOST games last year. Yeah, Chipper played in more games than anyone else on the roster. How is that too injury prone or too old? Sure, he gets dinged, but he won a batting title 18 months ago and he played in 143 games last year. So why the rush to dump him when there is NOBODY who can do any better?

The reason the Braves are struggling is not Chipper’s fault. You get a bad team by trading away the farm for J.D. Drew and Mark Teixeira and then replacing them with Raul Mondesi and Troy Glaus when you’re too cheap to keep them. You get a bad team when you let Adam LaRoche leave when his salary demands are very reasonable. You get a bad team when you give away Jeff Francouer rather than showing him tough love by sending him to the minors. You get a bad team by signing over-the-hill free agents like Garret Anderson and then replacing them with even less capable youngsters you acquired in a trade for your best pitcher.

Lay off Chipper. He should be allowed to decline gracefully the way our “glorious” pitchers did, but unfortunately we haven’t found a bat to replace the Chipper of 1999, so some of you expect him to still be the Chipper of 1999. Right now the Chipper of 2010 is the best 3B option we have, and he’s still a pretty good option. 3B is not the problem (CF, 1B, LF, RF, – those are the problems).

Larry Jones

April 27th, 2010
10:39 am

Thanks Beans, give the $5 check 5 business days to get to you.

KingToeNail

April 27th, 2010
10:42 am

They’ll end up at .515 for the season and call it successful because they ALMOST won the division.

carlchamblee

April 27th, 2010
10:46 am

Chipper is part of the problem, Beans. Maybe not the biggest problem but a .260 hitter batting third in the lineup and a error-prone gimpy third baseman afraid to chase down a foul ball IS a problem

Auburn fan

April 27th, 2010
10:59 am

Can Bobby retire early? This is going to be sad for him..If these guys don’t turn this around. Bobby deserves better. I thought this was going to be a special team that was going to win for Bobby.

Windfall Profits

April 27th, 2010
11:04 am

I know it’s early, but the Braves are tied for the 3rd WORST record in all of baseball. This is pityful.

submariner

April 27th, 2010
11:05 am

No matter what the political spin from the front office is, the reality is that the organization is under a salary ceiling. You pay for peanuts, you get monkeys. Simple as that.

Windfall Profits

April 27th, 2010
11:06 am

Any chance the Braves try to quickly add a bat from via a Jermaine Dye or Gary Sheffield signing? They would not be the answer to the Braves problems, but they would at least add a little extra firepower. I feel like either of those two would add more pop than Glaus or Cabrera.

David

April 27th, 2010
11:07 am

Was anyone else really disappointed when Diaz was on first in the 9th with no outs and we pinch hit with Hinske to swing away? It seemed like the perfect bunt situation to send the tying run to second with 1 out and Prado coming to the dish that inning. When I saw Hinske step into the box I knew it was a double play waiting to happen… sure enough. (Not that I have anything against Hinske, I was just hoping to see someone bunt)

Windfall Profits

April 27th, 2010
11:08 am

submariner….agree 100%. If the Braves would/could have spent about $10-15million more and brought in or kept a few key guys, I think things would be different. I realize they can’t spend like the Yankees, but there is no reason why they could take the payroll from it’s current $85-90million range to about $100million.

submariner

April 27th, 2010
11:08 am

David, Bobby Cox doesn’t know how to play small ball.

submariner

April 27th, 2010
11:09 am

Windfall Profits – Roger that!!!!!

submariner

April 27th, 2010
11:11 am

Windfall Profits – Jermaine Dye would be perfect. He did hit 27 homer’s last year and he’s still out there. I gotta believe that they could get him at a fairly decent price.

Windfall Profits

April 27th, 2010
11:14 am

Both Dye and Sheffield are former Braves and should feel pretty comfortable playing in Atlanta. You wouldnt have to trade prospects to get them. They should come fairly cheap, I think either one could play 1B if needed, and could play LF. Plus there are no long term commitments, and if they flop then you haven’t lost much. I just feel like something needs to be done. Again, I know it is still very early in the season, but this offense just has shown zero signs that it is capable of producing anything near consistantly being competitive.

ijudgenot

April 27th, 2010
11:17 am

“How did Chipper go from being out for a few days to not missing any time, except for the game he left early because of the injury?”

Though it won’t be said, therein lies some of the problem. Chipper Jones was a great player and will be in the HOF some day, but his skills have eroded over the last couple of years because of age but he does not see it. Thats waht Brian Jordon was referring to when he said Chipper does not seem to be preparing his body in off season for the grind of a 162 season. In his prime Chipper was so gifted that he could roll out of bed and go 3/5 with a homer on any given day, now that will not happen without preparing the aging muscles. When you get the same injuryu that sidelined you for many games last year, one week into the season, all eyes should roll. Under Cox this is Chipper’s team and he sets the tone for the rest of the players. Everyone has batted in a different slot except Chipper, despite his ups and downs. Larousa and Cox are 2 and 3 in games won by a manager, but the difference in the two is that you never get the feeling with Larousa that any of his players including Pujos or Mac when he played, were bigger than the team as a whole. Under Cox, Chipper is bigger than the team. He decides when he plays and when it is a good time to sit. His ego has to be protected by letting him hit in the 3 hole all the time despite when he maybe hitting .200. This team should be buiding around McCann, Escobar and Heyward, yet Cox will never put either of those players in the 3 hole with Chipper in lineup unless Chipper is hitting in the more prestigious cleanup spot. If Chipper was a true team guy he would lobby Cox to put him in the 5/6 slot to show team that the team is the most important thing not one player. This team may not win many more games next year, but they will be a better team moving toward getting better with Cox and hopefully Chipper retired.

Rough Estimate

April 27th, 2010
11:19 am

If we get about halfway through the season and it is obvious that the season is lost, Wren needs to clean house and go ahead and trade Chipper for what he can get, trade/release Glaus & Cabrera or any other non productive players, and try once again to dump Derek Lowe if there are any takers and start to build around Hanson, Heyward, McCann, Jurrjens, Prado, Escobar, Freeman, Schafer, etc.

Windfall Profits

April 27th, 2010
11:22 am

It is scary to think that the Braves have I believe $26million per year for the next 2 years committed to Chipper & D Lowe. Both of whom are overpaid, underproducing, past-their-prime, aging former stars. That $26million to them will handcuff the Braves from bringing in any new blood for the forseable future.

ShortBravesFan

April 27th, 2010
11:28 am

It’s still just April. Calm down people, give them more of a chance. I think Troy, Nate, and Melky are going to start coming around. I feel it. We just need to HIT! Our pitching is fine.

We play the Cards 3 more times in this series and I’m pretty confident we can get it together and get some wins.

Be optimist Braves fans! We need more fans to show more support at Turner Field!!!!!!

Go Braves!!!!!!

DogTheMan

April 27th, 2010
11:54 am

This is what happens when you run a team on the cheap. We keep trying to resurrect players who have nothing left. GO OUT AN GET A HITTER N HIS PRIME!!!!!!! I am tired of signings like Glaus and McLouth saying they can bounce back. THEY HAVE NOT YET!!!!! Please trade for a leadoff hitter and a big bat before the season is lost!!!

tree rollins

April 27th, 2010
11:58 am

These Braves are going to be just fine. They are just a hit or two per game from a long winning streak with this great pitching staff. Granted, TP is not great at coaching the vets at hitting but he’s super with the young guys that admire him. Bobby may not have the fire he once had but he keeps an even keel during the losing streaks so the players don’t panic. Baseball is a game of patience and relaxation where you play for the long haul. Maybe bringing Freeman up will turn it around.

Dwayne

April 27th, 2010
12:05 pm

Booby and Terry has killed the Braves. They suck!

UGGH

April 27th, 2010
12:08 pm

What is Jemaine Dye doing right now?? Why not end the everything is going to be ok mentality and send Bobby packing right now!!!

Lionel Porta

April 27th, 2010
12:17 pm

Another mismanaged game by the highly over rated Bobby Cox….leaves Hudson in too long….with 4 LH pitchers in the bullpen, he still leaves Moylan in to pitch to a LH hitter that will probably be sent down to the minors today….what a joke Cox and Pendleton are….its only April 27 and the Braves suck. Wonder where we are going to be in the standings on May 27

Matt

April 27th, 2010
12:17 pm

Most disheartening part of the whole thing: The Braves have had some very exciting wins already this year. Not to mention with Heyward hitting his first ML HR and being a big part of those exciting wins. Usually these sort of things build MOMENTUM. Usually a team gets hot because of things like this, but not this team.

Lionel Porta

April 27th, 2010
12:20 pm

Jason Heyward?? when is he going to be sent down? Before June 1? Another hyped up youngster that is proving he isn’t ready for the Show….Brought up to the big club way too soon out of necessity. He can’t hit big league pitching right now….will be hitting around .200 this time next week

Ray

April 27th, 2010
12:32 pm

For those who think the Braves are about to turn it around…dream on. How many times has this team been shut out this year? How many times should they have been shut out?….even their last win (the ninth inning comeback over Philly) required two out, ninth inning miracles to avoid another shutout. They’ve already been no-hit. The team is weak, has few solid bats, and does not play fundamental baseball. How many errors and mistakes do they make per game? Four? Five? They look like a minor league team (at best).

Ed

April 27th, 2010
12:32 pm

Has anyone noticed C. Jones’ face lately. He looks like he is in agony with pain. It certainly does not look like the face of a team leader.

gcs

April 27th, 2010
12:56 pm

That was vintage Bobby last night:
1. Sticking with a pitcher (Hudson) too long.
2. Taking out a player (Glaus) having a multi-hit game.

Can we just fast forward to Spring 2011?

.

Mikey

April 27th, 2010
12:57 pm

Any reason Chipper was not guarding the line in the 8th during the Pujols at/bat allowing him a standup double??? Anyone notice that 2 ex Braves now playing for SF (Renteria & DeRosa) single- handedly beat the best pitcher in BB Roy Halladay to keep the Braves “only” 3 out??

sugarfoot

April 27th, 2010
1:02 pm

Sorry, but they suck. And if they make TP manager, I will never watch them again.

SRF

April 27th, 2010
1:10 pm

Funny how Kelly Johnson has suddenly remembered how to hit….

Chipper

April 27th, 2010
1:15 pm

It’s hard being a big leaguer, guys…

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