Braves quotes after Monday walk-off win against Giants

***FREDDIE FREEMAN

Biggest moment of career?

“So far, yeah. Especially when you’re in a playoff race and you’re playing a team right behind you in the wild-card [race]. It was fun.”

What are you looking for from Wilson in that situation?

“A heater. That’s all he throws, so … it’s either a two-seamer or a cutter, so I know I was going to get one of them. Just stay up the middle.”

Got behind 1-2, stayed calm despite previous strikeouts

“I didn’t think about any of my strikeouts before that, or anything like that. I just had a job to do right there. I just wanted to battle. Took a couple of good pitches and I got a pitch to hit and got it up the middle.”

How big a win can that be for you guys?

“It’s huge. That’s a two-game swing. We’re up five or something like that now. To win the first game of the series is always great. We’ve got some momentum going into tomorrow.”

On getting to 3-2 count against Wilson

“You know he’s got to throw a strike, because he can’t walk in the tying run right there. You know you’re going to get a pitch to hit, just a matter of whether it’s going to be 91 or 96 [mph], a cutter or a two-seamer. He threw me a two-seamer right there and I was able to get the barrel on the ball up the middle.”

“I know when I hit it that we were scoring both runs. He [center fielder] was playing a little bit deeper, in case we hit a [deep fly] ball he could still catch it. Right when I got halfway I knew we were scoring. Seeing Mac’s face at second was pretty cool, and him jumping on me was pretty special.”

***ERIC HINSKE

What are you looking for in that situation, facing Wilson in ninth

“I was just looking for a pitch out over the plate to drive. When I’m pinch-hitting I’m not taking, and I know I’m the tying run. So I looked for something to drive. I’ve faced him a couple of times before where I had kind of a long at-bat against him. He loves his fastball. Front-door sinkers and back-door cutters. You’ve just got to pick a side of the plate and hope you get something to hit.

“Tonight he kind of just stayed around the edges. First pitch was down, second pitch was down, borderline call low, and Joe West called it [a ball], so I was in a good count at 2-0 and pulled it foul. He didn’t really throw me anything [else] over the plate to swing at, so I was just trying to be as patient as I could.”

On Constanza starting the rally with another infield hit

“You can’t say enough about Constanza. The guy gets on base every time he’s up. It seems like he’s able to manipulate the ball wherever he wants to. He just takes that slap swing, and he’s so fast he puts so much pressure on the defense.”

On the walk-off-hit

“Freeman gets up after Uggla made an out. All we’re looking for is [Freeman] to put the ball in play there, and he ends up getting a hit. Just a great rally. Great win for us. That’s a two-game swing for us right there. We either go to three up or five up [in wild-card race]. It’s a great feeling for us. Hopefully we can go tomorrow and get another one.”

***FREDI GONZALEZ

On the game:

“That’s a wow. That’s a helluva comeback there, especially the first game of the series. These guys, we battled the whole game. Bumgarner was really, really good. He gave up a home run to Mac and that was it. We didn’t sniff it again the rest of the night. And Huddy was equally good also. I’m glad he doesn’t get a decision, doesn’t get the loss, and we get the win.”

On Freeman not being a rookie anymore

“He’s 21 years old and you look at the at-bats, the way he’s played, this guy is way above his age and maturity level. He’s come up big a few times. In that situation, he doesn’t panic. He doesn’t let the situation get him excited or get him out of his plan. That was good.”

On playoff feel in ninth inning

“I think the whole game did. It was fun.”

Would’ve been tough loss for Hudson

“I’m glad we were able to win the game for the team and also for Huddy not to get the loss because he really pitched well.”

On why he chose to let Hudson hit in sixth, when he popped out on bunt with two on and 1 out

“Here it is first and third in the sixth, with one out and you let him hit. First of all, for me he may be the only guy on the staff that you feel comfortable handling the bat. That’s No. 1. No. 2 he’s pitching so well, he had like 83 pitches to that [point]. He didn’t get the RBI but we got the win.”

On Constanza starting ninth with “routine” grounder

“The speed. He hits a chopper. He’s hit two today that never left the infield. The speed, it creates havoc defensively, then Hinske draws a great base on ball there. Bourn bunts him over and if you fumble that ball, he’s got a chance to be safe at first also. We were able to get some hits together after that.”

On close win without Venters, Kimbrel

“Other than maybe a couple complete game wins, I’m sure they’ve been involved in most all of those wins. It was nice for Huddy to pitch well enough to go deep in the game in the eighth and Martinez to give us a clean ninth and us score in the bottom of the ninth.”

On lot of good at-bats against Wilson in one inning for second time this year

“He’s a guy that maybe we see him good. I don’t know. Who knows? But we had some good at-bats today.”

187 comments Add your comment

Spartygw

August 15th, 2011
11:17 pm

First!

Starting to feel like September/october. Great finish and should build the kids confidence even more as we head into the postseason.

Bama Fan#2

August 15th, 2011
11:20 pm

Good win!!!!!!!!!! RTR

Joliet Jim

August 15th, 2011
11:22 pm

aint it good martinez gets a win after all his hard unselfish work all year?

Spartygw

August 15th, 2011
11:24 pm

Constanza really does put pressure on the infielders. I love the addition of him and Bourn. I wonder who is faster. I’d like to see some 40yd dash times to compare them against some NFL guys.

Bama Brave

August 15th, 2011
11:25 pm

Where Fighting for The wild card and Only 23,000 people show up on a cool night at the Ted. Now thats sad!

toby flenderson

August 15th, 2011
11:27 pm

yes thats the best part

a long awaited win for martinez.. so much that he has contributed to the team..
not only did the braves beat the giants, but also beat fredi…
didnt like hudson staying in to hit… and didnt like them having him bunt… i wouldve taken him out for a PH.. conrad. or since he stayed in the game, rather him go hack at pitches instead of bunt..
the giants got lucky scoring 2 runs without any hits to tie it…

Joseph

August 15th, 2011
11:27 pm

Bama Brave…….it is called a school night.

AK Braves Fan

August 15th, 2011
11:27 pm

Glad Martinez finally picked up a win there after having wins stolen from him in two great earlier outings. There was the 6 innings in extras against the Pirates, and the 4 innings with his two run double earlier in the season. He’s a special young player, nerves of steel.

Darryl Blackberry

August 15th, 2011
11:28 pm

Braves may have to face this team in October, for sure. Without having to face Posey, Uribe, Renteria and Sanchez this year, well, there’s not much to fear outside of the Beard.

Bring ‘em on.

toby flenderson

August 15th, 2011
11:28 pm

@bama brave

the typical excuse other people tend to use is “school started/school night”
my thought is… ” im sure school started everywhere else.. yet stadiums still sell out”

Bama Brave

August 15th, 2011
11:29 pm

Tyson

August 15th, 2011
11:29 pm

Terrible answer by Fredi with regards to hitting Hudson there. He leaves out the crucial fact that he had him sac bunting, not swinging away. Therefore, there was no chance of getting an rbi there because it wasn’t a squeeze either. Best case scenario there was that you get 2nd and 3rd and 2 outs as opposed to 1st and 3rd with 2 outs. Worst case would have been a bunt dp. Just an indefensible decision there and I’m surprised you didn’t follow up after that answer he gave.

You should have followed up on that question, because but for that dramatic comeback, that decision would have cost us the game.

Either way, great and much needed win.

toby flenderson

August 15th, 2011
11:32 pm

also.. terrible game by bourn

chief pitchanono

August 15th, 2011
11:36 pm

AWESOME WIN!! Hopefully this gets us roll’n again. The last two games with Chicago were kinda bummers so it was great to steal one back. 5 games up and some confidence will hopefully keep them playing great for the rest of the week. Like Bradley said, play well this week and hope the Brewers stay hot and we might get to watch philly and San Fran battle it out in the first round. That would be interesting now wouldn’t it. Go Braves!!

Hoho

August 15th, 2011
11:39 pm

Seriously Dave, YOU SHOULDA followed up that answer with
another better question. Feel free to show up to the chicken factory
tomorrow and tell them what they shoulda done. Maybe u shoulda gone out
for a cold one with the ladies after the game but thanks again for takin the time
to give us junkies something.

wins-by-a-link

August 15th, 2011
11:39 pm

Freddy Freeman should be rookie of the year, He has really matured, Excellant hitter and great glove

NorCal Brave

August 15th, 2011
11:39 pm

Constanza is a huge difference maker. To think we spent so long experimenting with Mather, Ramirez, and, yes, McClouth in corner outfield.
And sorry Braves fans in the South, you gotta be able to fill more than 25-thousand seats for arguably the biggest series of the season so far. If I could get there myself from 3,000 miles away, I would.

Largo

August 15th, 2011
11:39 pm

Great Comeback Guys!! Instead of three ahead (WC) now it’s five.

Husker Tony

August 15th, 2011
11:44 pm

BrianSC

August 15th, 2011
11:48 pm

Playoff baseball. Playoff atmosphere. Come on Atlanta, pack the Ted. Too many empty seats in the house tonight.

Great win BRAVES!!! WAY TO GO!!!

The Braves need to send Heyward down to AAA for extra at bats and extra work. He looks, like he has all year, completely overmatched. He doesn’t seem to have any gameplan at the plate. At his current rate, I don’t see him getting much time on the field down the stretch. Constanza is far outplaying him right now.

I like Heyward. I am a fan of his. Heyward has a great future ahead of him. He has a ton of talent. The Braves owe it to him to do what is in his best interest. He probably wouldn’t think being sent to AAA is in his best interest. That is when the Manager and GM need to help him see the big picture and help him realize that a visit to AAA will allow him to get the extra work he needs without the pressure of the bright lights and big stage.

Kimbrel rocks

August 15th, 2011
11:51 pm

i wish all these people would stop crying about attendance. atlanta is NOT some huge city with millions of people who live in the city limits. people are not going to drive in hours of traffic in AM and after work then turn around to drive back into the city. if you know atlanta, you know why they don’t sell out. not to mention the fact that turner field is in the middle of murderville..frankly they do well with attendance considering it all.

A Brave in Minnesota

August 15th, 2011
11:51 pm

I would have to say I agree a little bit with NorCal Brave……the Twins are a last place team, yet they have sold out this place every game since it opened. I expected to see the same kind of crowd tonight as I saw this past weekend when the last place Cubs came to town and beat us two out of three. Yet, when a winning team, the team that beat us in the playoffs last year comes rolling in……where are the fans?

I remember those good ole days when being in school didn’t matter during the week and Fulton County stadium was rocking……how much did we used to win back then? I can’t seem to remember, but I think we ran off 14 straight pennants right?

COME ON ATLANTA!!! For once, you have 3 teams, the Falcons, Hawks AND the Braves who are all competitive and are ALL playoff teams and could conceivably win a Championship in any given year………yet you fail to come out and support the teams you say you love. I am not even a fan of the Twins, the Vikings or the Wolves, but I think they have better fans than Atlanta and that’s pretty sad!!!

GREAT WIN FOR THE BRAVES AND THE FANS WHO DID SHOW UP AT THE TED…..and if I wasn’t all the way up here in the frozen, yet usually warm north, i’d be screaming up with ya!!! :)

Mister Frisky

August 15th, 2011
11:51 pm

Great win Bravos.Costanza has muy corazon.Love the fact he can beat out almost any ground ball.I’m looking for 3 of 4 from SF.

Kimbrel rocks

August 15th, 2011
11:53 pm

heyward is just plain awful. sorry but bring up another AAA guy….Gartrell or somebody.

Brave in Oregon

August 15th, 2011
11:56 pm

Bourne has been a little disappointing, hopefully Freeman can get hot again same with Uggla, and finally; we need our pitching back from the first half!!

Kimbrel rocks

August 15th, 2011
11:57 pm

constanza is SERIOUSLY the biggest spark to hit atlanta in years. bourn had a rough game but it’s nice to have two speedy guys playing at once. it’s safe to say…heyward is out of a gig until further notice….

Kimbrel rocks

August 15th, 2011
11:57 pm

keep in mind ….constanza is a SWITCH HITTER…so next year he will be batting RIGHT handed too. freaking AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

TONE-TONE

August 15th, 2011
11:57 pm

JOSEPH…….Please take a break tonight! let’s enjoy this win@!
I cannot take you anymore!

milo

August 15th, 2011
11:57 pm

Tried to find Murderville on Google maps, nothing came up.

Joseph

August 15th, 2011
11:59 pm

Feel free to report any comment I offend you with Tone. Have a nice night.

John Doe

August 16th, 2011
12:00 am

Confused…the Braves are 71-51 and 5 games up in the wildcard and people are complaining. Spoiled fans it seems to me.

Joseph

August 16th, 2011
12:02 am

John, no they just want to complain. Maybe it makes them feel better about themselves. Too each their own, I guess.

ohhhhYEAH

August 16th, 2011
12:04 am

@ Kimbrel

Constanza hasnt hit right handed in 3 years, since he broke his finger sliding head first or somethin. it was in an early article. he is still listed as a switch hitter but he told carroll rogers last week that he hasnt hit right handed in 3 years almost

Simpson's Homer

August 16th, 2011
12:17 am

Even though Constanza is looking into off-season surgery to fix the gnarly finger, why would ANYONE want him to revert to switch hitting when you look at his current results? Having him bat right-handed would also add 2 steps to his speedy journey to 1st base. The facts:

Batting against righties, he’s batting .359 (14-39). But, vs. lefties he’s batting .526 (10-19).
Until he shows he can’t hit lefty pitching, I believe I would stick with .526….!!! GO Braves!

Joseph

August 16th, 2011
12:30 am

Simpson, just because he has surgery to fix it, doesn’t mean it is so he can switch hit. Maybe it is because he is now in the bigs and wants to finally not look at it anymore?

Go_BRAVOS

August 16th, 2011
12:30 am

Was at the game (wearing my Freeman tshirt) and it was a great come back. Huddy wasn’t dominant but pitched good, except for the 2homers. Great win and the crowd was pretty loud for only 24K. Keep rakin Freddie. Maybe Chipper can get back at some point and we’ll finally see what this lineup can do. GO Braves

Mitchell

August 16th, 2011
12:32 am

I really hope the Giants get something together and make the playoffs.

That is by far the best match-up for the Braves compared to Milwaukee or Arizona.

We definitely don’t want to play Arizona and possibly the Brewers’ home record could backfire in October like it did for us last year (wishful thinking) but offensivley, we’re the ‘27 Yankees compared to the Giants.

Plus, revenge. Being 4-0 this year is sweet but they still won the World Series. They’re still the big winners.

Kimbrel rocks

August 16th, 2011
12:35 am

well he’s getting his hand fixed would be great for him to have full control of both side of the plate….especially in bunting situations….it;s easy to bunt right handed in certain situations. let’s face it constanza is a star. he’s our little piece of magic that we need to win it all!

Go_BRAVOS

August 16th, 2011
12:36 am

Was at game tonight (wearing my Freddie #5 tshirt) and it was a great come from behind win. Glad Huddy didnt get a loss, he wasnt dominate but pitched pretty efficient to get through 8. Maybe Chipper will stay healthy and we can finally see what this lineup is capable of. Keep rakin Freddie Go Braves

Rowsdower

August 16th, 2011
12:38 am

I would like to lodge a complaint. Why the hell was Huddy sent up to bunt with a runner at 3rd and less than 2 when Constanza could just easily steal 2nd? You cannot give away an out there.

Done complaining. Freddie, you’re a beast. Just a sick W.

Joseph

August 16th, 2011
12:43 am

Rowsdower, it was a safety squeeze. Huddy popped it up, that is why Fredi didn’t call for a suicide squeeze. If he got it down Gonzo probably would have scored unless it was fielded by 1B. Good call if Huddy got it down, looks bad now in hindsight.

Joe for 3

August 16th, 2011
12:44 am

Brave in Oregon- Bourne has been a little disappointing

You must be joking. Bourn, not Bourne, is hitting over .300 as a Brave. OBP over .360, 6 steals.

Would you rather have Schafer out there with his career .220 average and .300 obp?

Simpson's Homer

August 16th, 2011
12:46 am

Joseph, my point was exactly that — there is no evidence of Constanza wanting to switch hit again, and absolutely no statistical reason for him to do so. He’s just neglected to get the finger fixed while being a low-paid career minor leaguer. Only a blockhead would want a guy batting over .500 against lefties to change what he is doing…….!

Kimbrel rocks

August 16th, 2011
12:49 am

@simpson….think blockhead thinks you missed the point….he needs to get it fixed so he has the OPTION to bat as a righty. we don’t know what his numbers against lefties would be over an entire year.

Kimbrel rocks

August 16th, 2011
12:50 am

and the numbers against lefties will not stay at .500…keep it real

Rowsdower

August 16th, 2011
12:52 am

Safety squeeze with an average runner at 3rd and the entire stadium knowing a bunt is coming isn’t a high percentage play. Sending Constanza to force the D in and let Huddy take a rip.

I defend Fredi to the death, but that one pissed me off.

Still a great comeback against a guy that thinks he’s God’s gift to closing. Fear this jackwagon!

Joseph

August 16th, 2011
12:57 am

It was the call. If Huddy had gotten the bunt down on the 3B side Fredi is a genious, except to the ones that think he is an “idiot”. It didn’t work. I honestly thought Constanza should have tried to steal on the 2nd pitch, but it is what it is. All I am saying is I understand the call. Doesn’t mean I have to think that I would have made that call myself, but I understand it.

Rowsdower

August 16th, 2011
12:58 am

A slap hitter like Constanza doesn’t really benefit from switch hitting when he is simply putting the ball in play and running. Sure, it would be great to have the option, but ultimately I don’t see it as a big benefit.

Simpson's Homer

August 16th, 2011
1:24 am

Hmmm… I was responding to the person who said Constanza also “WILL be batting right-handed” next year. Of course, nobody is going to bat .526 against lefties over an entire season of at-bats.
BUT, here are more facts from Gwinnett:
Constanza was batting .318 vs. righties, and .300 vs. lefties. So, FACTS make the point once again. He has proven in 391 ABs this year between AAA and the majors that lefties don’t seem to bother him when batting left-handed. There is really no reason for further editorializing unless your opinion about it is grounded in facts……until he stops hitting lefties. So, keep it real………..

DontStopTheChop

August 16th, 2011
1:58 am

Tyson, Hudson looked to be trying to get down a puch bunt which is a good idea with a lefty on the hill and slow first baseman like huff. I like the move, a good push bunt with runners on the corners leads to a run. I liked the way hudson was throwing and thought he should stay in the game there. I’m really ok with anything that doesn’t result in a double play by hudson right there

bobbybrave

August 16th, 2011
2:24 am

rowsdower…you are exactly right…..on everything you just said, i also defend fredi….how could you not he has this team in a prime spot to make the playoff……i agree with letting hudson hit, but i also would not have the safety sqeeze on…i think he was just trying to move the runner to 2nd…in that cause hit and run like he did earlier…that keeps you out of the double play and hudson makes good contact…but what a huge win….maybe to this point the biggest of the season….middle relief was probably the reason for not pinch hitting at that time…

clay

August 16th, 2011
2:45 am

AMAZING….People still find stuff to complain about when that was of the best games all year, if not the best. Not every hitter on the team is going to hit .300 and not every manager is going to make the right decision, but guess what he is there for a reason and NOT YOU. On to another note, people need to quit bitching about how THE TED is not packed out. It never has been on a week night and it never will be so get off of it. Just be happy that we are 5 games up in the WC because we could be the houston astros and have the worst record in baseball. GO BRAVES!!!

bobbybrave

August 16th, 2011
4:19 am

we might need to pull for the phillies over the snakes next three games.. do not believe we can catch phi. so lets put some distance between us the giants and arizona…just a thought

bravesgrl4lifeeee

August 16th, 2011
5:21 am

Great win Monday night! Regarding attendance – believe me, I would love to get to more games. I live within 100 miles of the Ted, but consider this. Every Monday night, I have prison ministry – I am doing a good thing there and as much as I love my Braves, I think even they would support community service. Every other Tuesday, I have a standing appointment with my chiropractor. One Wednesday a month, I have an HOA Board Meeting. That leaves Thursday, Friday and weekend. I am married to a non-baseball guy, so I do have to spend some time with him at least one or two of those evenings. To top it off, I get up at 5 a.m. and am an hour away from work. I work 8 – 5, and it’s at least 6:00 most nights when I get home. If I go to a weeknight game, and if I stay for the entire game, it’s midnight before I get home, after walking to the parking lot, sitting in traffic getting out of the lot, and then the long drive home. At my age, I just cannot do that more than occasionally. I go to games as often as I can, and I spend good money on that, too. I am sure there are a lot of people, expecially in these difficult times, that cannot afford to spend every night at the ballpark. Just hard cold fact.

Most of the Atlanta Braves local fans DON’T LIVE IN ATLANTA. It’s not like northern cities in that regard. Our suburbs aren’t 10 or 15 miles outside of city limits – some of us are 40 – 50 miles out. If you know anything about Atlanta traffic, you know that it cann sometimes take 2 hours to get that far. When I went on Friday, I went straight from work, which is only about 20 miles out. I left at 4 p.m., and it was about 5:15 when I got to the stadium. I stayed for the fireworks and hung out with the Thanks Bobby! crew for a little while to let traffic clear out. It still took me over an hour to drive home because of midnight Atlanta connector traffic. It was about 1 a.m. when I got home. That’s fine on a weekend, but not so much during the week.

So, many reasons the Ted doesn’t fill up during the week. Did you even watch this past weekend – the Ted was basically sold out Friday and Saturday nights. The atmosphere was awesome Friday (I was there).

Okay, rant over. I just hate the blog getting clogged with complaints about attendance. If you don’t live here, you don’t truly know the challenges of getting to the Ted. And if you have visited, you’ve probably stayed close enough in town that you don’t really get the experience of a burbanite.

Stinger2

August 16th, 2011
5:43 am

I side with those fans who understand why the Braves do not fill the stadium especially on week nights. The stadium is not in the right place for the majority for the Braves fan base.
Next, I don`t understand all the Fredi bashers. Sure, you have a right to your opinions but the fact is you do not really know all of whats going on down on the field at any given point in a game. Let the manager in the dugout make the decisions and be thankful its not wantabe managers who do so.

Bud Wiser

August 16th, 2011
6:39 am

Congratulations to Jim Thome for hitting home run number 600 last night. Being only the 8th man in MLB history to do that, they can start casting his bust for Cooperstown right now.

And he did it without steroids, like Bonds.

Hammerin’ Hank still number 1 with 755.

The hypocrisy of MLB though is that they recognize a cheater like Bonds, whose juice-filled body played on the field, directly affecting the outcome of so very many games; yet Pete Rose merely gambled, affecting play and/or managing not a whit, yet he is denied entry? I suspect racial motivations there.

Tampa Gator

August 16th, 2011
7:04 am

Why not a hit and run with Huddy in the sixth, with Jose at first. I think Huddy could execute a H&R in that situation. But I guess Freddy never even thought about that. Sometimes I wonder if Freddy is actually thinking of more than one option on the bench. He seemed very confused even about what decision he did make in that situation because Huddy did not swing for an RBI….he bunted for a sacrifice, which would have been out #2. You either have to hit and run in that situation or pinch hit for Huddy. You don’t bunt for out #2….do you? I guess you do if you are Freddy….and you don’t even realize that you did.

Anyway, Freeman and the Braves made him look good in the end. GO BRAVES.

ATLfan15

August 16th, 2011
7:39 am

great comeback win!! but not getting that timely hit with RISP is the bane of this team’s existence. once again, going into the 9th inning, we had double digit hits (10?) and only 2 runs. gotta do better than that.

@Bud Wiser: Hammerin’ Hank will always be the TRUE home run king! :-)

@bravesgrl4life: well written post. i’m sure it will be ripped to shreds by those who feel that the most important thing is to spend every night at The Ted, but it’s just not possible for me, you and thousands of others. and watching them on tv every night and listening to the radio broadcast does not count for anything, or so i was told by someone on this very blog last year. i love the Braves, have been a fan for 35 years (and counting) but most of the time i have to love them from afar. ;-)

bravo-n-knoxville

August 16th, 2011
7:47 am

Constanza…leave him alone, and never try to fix something that’s not broken (in his case the finger probably is broken, but you know I’m referring to his .400+ BA).

Also, the pink elephant in this case is Freddi G. If Huddy steps into the box in the 6th…gotta be hacking or otherwise you are not doing anything but taking an extra chance of injury with your SP squaring to bunt for no gain in a playoff race. Fly ball, grounder in hole, error, passed ball, or even a hit scores a run…really Freddi???

Bobby

August 16th, 2011
7:52 am

people, stop saying heyward should be sent down. there’s only 2 weeks until the minor league regular season ends and the rosters expand so it would be completely pointless

henry from TN

August 16th, 2011
8:02 am

@ darrylblackberry you said the beard was all we had to fear you must not realize their bull-pen is the best in the league usually when you get to them it’s lights out ill bet we loose tonight with the rookie going….

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:04 am

I still question the lineup strategy.

With McCann out for two weeks–and Chipper always out with every possible ailment found in a medical diagnostic journal–the Braves had developed some excellent chemistry in their batting order. To simply insert McCann in the #3 spot immediately upon his return with Freeman doing so well their was a disruption. Nothing against perhaps our best hitter in McCann, but this is about winning, not entitlement.

Yes, everyone liked the thought of our best hitter always batting third…tree only of the same hitter has the minimal speed and situational hitting to stay out of the double play. McCann just happens to be the slowest man on the team and, with a hot Freeman or Uggla, there’s no logic in batting him 3rd.

I think all of this has only served to slow down such a potentially well balanced lineup.

A much more effective lineup would be:

Against a RHP:

Bourne
Prado
Freeman
McCann
Uggla
Jones, when healthy, Hinske or Freeman when not,
Gonzalez (Jones can best handle the safe pitches one will see to get to the free swinging Gonzalez)
Constanza

Against LHP:

Same, but while he’s so hot I’d pop Uggla in the 3 hole. Further, while he continues to find his best swing I wouldn’t hesitate to place Constanza at #2 and Prado at #8 against a RHP. The thought of Bourne and Constanza as two lead-off batters followed by either Freeman, McCann or Uggla is intriguing.

Never put your slowest runner hitting third in a lineup, regardless of how well he is hitting, especially if you have as many as two guys, Uggla and Freeman, that are just as hot and are much less likely to be doubled up ti end the first inning…ans as we’re told repeatedly, “when the Braves score first they are 150 and 1 this season.”

With Bourne and Constanza at #1 & #2, you’d never witness a double play thus always having a chance to go up 2-0 in the first with either Uggla, Freeman and McCann coming to the plate.

CRMAC300

August 16th, 2011
8:05 am

Amazing how the complainers are still here, even after a win like last night! Hey, complainers, this just in: No team wins every game!! The same guys who are complaining about Fredi’s decision to bunt with Hudson would be calling it a great play if he gets it down! I do agree, however, that he should have let Constanza try to steal second in that situation. Not every play works the way you draw it up! Get some perspective! How would you like to be a Houston fan these days?

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:06 am

Sorry about the typos…I almost never take the time to proof before submission. After the above mess, I think I’ll start!

Joe Charboneau

August 16th, 2011
8:08 am

Still a very bad managerial move not to pinch hit for Hudson in 6th. But Fredi got lucky. You can’t always be lucky.

Part-Timer

August 16th, 2011
8:10 am

Chipper Jones has become a part-time player. I think I would retire before being that if I were as great as he was.

bill

August 16th, 2011
8:14 am

to Brave in minneapolis…shut up you twinkie fans cheated your butt off in that old trash bag stadium you had. Now that you play a straight up game you can’t compete. You glorified one of the worst calls in baseball with a gantt-hrbek bobble head. As a cheated Braves fan I find that as funny as a falling Minnapolis bridge headless bobble head. You continue to play thome for the publicity he brings your team even tho it took him 7 years to from 500 to 600. thats 14.5 homers per season. I hate The Minnesota Twins and most of the state too.

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:21 am

CRMAC300,

“Get some perspective! How would you like to be a Houston fan these days?”

This sounds like the old “you should appreciate that broccoli, there are one billion kids in Africa that would die for that.”

To mention what was just one more most bizarre, illogical and potentially game deciding decisions is not simply complaining; it is question a decision had not Freeman came through on the very last strike of the game one that would have cost the Braves a win…period!

Hudson had given up a home run in the inning prior, and if you were listening closely, like the Braves the Giants almost NEVER lose when leading after 6 or 7 innings. No, you have a well rested Venters and Kimbrel, and a pitcher in his mid 30’s pitching in the Georgia August heat with high pitch count. So, you bring in a solid pinch hitter right there, get the tying runner across the plate–and potentially a lot more runs with a base hit– and then you’ve got the best pen in the business in the 7th, 8th and 9th innings.

Fredi gambled right there, his gamble failed, and fortunately Freeman bailed him out in heroic fashion. Next time, odds are (3 of 10 opportunities is a .300 batting average, remember?) Freeman or another batter doesn’t find a hole on a grounder.

Frank Wren

August 16th, 2011
8:22 am

Joe,

Why was it a bad move? it was only the 6th inning. Hudson was pitching great. He wanted to get more innings out of him.

Trojan

August 16th, 2011
8:24 am

Bobby: Pointless? The point is Heyward could play 14 straight days against AAA pitching, in a relaxed atmosphere and hopefully get his mechanics back to normal. Right not he will not have that opportunity because he is not one of the best three outfielders that we have. Therefore he won’t get consistant playing time to straighten out.

Points can be valid, even if you don’t agree with them.

Joe Charboneau

August 16th, 2011
8:25 am

It was a bad move because you don’t get many chances to score in a game. The move was to pinch hit right there.

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:29 am

And you can more easily get away with dumb managerial decisions when you have 162 opportunities to overcome them. But, if Fredi pulls one of his patented brain farts in a five games series in the second game of a five games series in an away game against a division winner, possibly down 0-1, and we come back to Atlanta needing three straight wins to advance, we won’t be so forgiving!

This is why his predecessor’s bone-headed postseason lineups and pitching decisions led to us watching 14 out of 15 times our opponent celebrate on the pitcher’s mound.

Talent usually prevails over 162 games…managers make a whole lot more difference in the best of five or the best of seven when the talent is comparable!

bill

August 16th, 2011
8:35 am

I lived in Atlanta before it lost its charm. Traffic is atrocious. The rush hour which is terrible on 75 south is just thinning out some when you have to leave at 6PM from your house to get to the stadium on time. Parking at the stadium is terrible. Does the subway go by these other stadiums? Well in Atlanta it does Not because the City wants the paking dollars. I attended playoff games every year during the streak and many times bought tickets on game day and one championship series against Arizona sat in a half filled stadium while the Braves played and lost a bid for the Pennant. In 1991 the fan base was the TV crowd and we watched every game on TV and went to work bleary eyed from being in the NL western division. We were still great Braves fans.

Donovan

August 16th, 2011
8:40 am

We have seen too many Cubs-type losses and too many sub-par Braves games to fill up a stadium for the inevitable heart ache of poor baseball execution.

Let's Go

August 16th, 2011
8:41 am

Bill @ 8:14
Calm down I don’t think A Brave in Minnesota is a Twins fan. He brought up a point about the crowd last night. There are a lot of factors to blame for the crowds at games at the Ted. First there are usually a lot more people at the game then you notice on TV because so many of them hang out at the Meat Market singles bars. Second getting to the ball park is a pain as is getting anywhere around Atlanta in the afternoon/early evening and with so many people moving farther and farther away from Atlanta there is no way they are going to drive 45+ mins home pick up the kids and then turn around and get back into the traffic to go see the game. Public transportation is available but it’s not great. A finally Atlanta and the surrounding areas are the number one spot in the country for youth baseball and with so many kids playing baseball year round it’s not very often that they don’t have games in the afternoon and in right now high school and youth football is going on too.

It would be nice if the Braves build a stadium downtown like Minnesota did where people could get off Marta walk up the stairs and be at the ball park but I don’t see it happening and I down see downtown expanding out to Turner Field so it will continue to be like this with week day games.

bill

August 16th, 2011
8:46 am

Am I the only Braves fan that thinks Bourn looks like he was taught to play outfield by Lonnie”Skates” Smith?

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:49 am

On another note, what has happened to the Braves image standards? Like the Yankees, I have always appreciated the neat grooming standards of not permitting excessive hair length, no earrings and a reasonable expectation of daily bathing and deodorant.

Seriously, those grossly over tattooed arms of Milan are the nastiest looking things I have ever seen on am man’s arms. Why can’t they ask this idiot to at least wear long sleeves when in uniform? It’s embarrassing to me as a Braves fan to have this nut case seen on national TV.

bill

August 16th, 2011
8:50 am

If winning World Series is all there is to being a great manager wouldn’t Casey Stengel be the greatest manger of all time?

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:50 am

That’s Moylan…good grief!

bravemom

August 16th, 2011
8:50 am

It’s really sad that the Braves are mainly supported by families with kids who have to go to school and students who go to school themselves. We need more bums off the street who could easily pay for a ticket!

Larry

August 16th, 2011
8:57 am

bill,

A world Series Championship should be the ultimate standard for a team’s success, not just winning more of 162 games over 6 months than 3 or 4 opponents the likes of the Marlins, Expos or Nationals, Mets, and many very bad Phillies teams until recently to qualify to get out managed 14 of 15 times.

Do you think the Yankees, Red Sox or Phillies are satisfied with a division winning flay hanging over their stadiums? Do you think the Patriots, Steelers, Packers, or even the Saints or Falcons on the NFL will deem this season a success if they simply make the playoffs.

It’s called standards…and our standards and expectations of the Braves should be much higher than simply qualifying for the postseason.

Ted Abernathy

August 16th, 2011
9:07 am

Any idea when Heyward is going to decide to start playing?

O'flarity's water bottle

August 16th, 2011
9:10 am

RIP Ernie Johnson Sr. !

Robert

August 16th, 2011
9:11 am

Freddie F took Fredi G off the hook as the manager of this team has a brain cramp for the second night in a row! You have the opportunity to strike big in the 6th, but you get nothing, plus you come up with a lame answer! How are you gonna get an RBI when your trying to sacrifice? If nothing else, fake bunt, and let Constanza steal second base!

jim

August 16th, 2011
9:11 am

Fredi had four choices in the 6th inning:
1> Have Hudson bunt Constanza to second and possibly get Gonzo home with a perfectly placed bunt (the one he made)
2> Have Constanza try to steal 2nd and let Hudson swing away
3> Try a suicide squeeze with Hudson
4> Use a PH for Hudson

Choice (4) means EOF, Venters, and Kimbrel are used for a 2nd day in a row with a rookie pitching (Tuesday), a man coming off the DL going Wed and another rookie with a 6 inning history going on Thursday. EOF, Venters, and Kimbrel would be overused by the end of the week with a tough foe coming in over the week end. Also if Chipper was not available to PH, the RH choices off the bench — Conrad and Ross are not big-time RH hitters.
I would have preferred choice 2 or even 3, but Fredi rolled the dice with th upcoming schedule in mind and won.

mike

August 16th, 2011
9:15 am

this game should have been much easier. ugly inning with error and HBP gave them cushion. gotta tighten up those screws…its the race!

mike

August 16th, 2011
9:18 am

@Ted Abernathy:

But that’s just it…when is he going to get significant playing time to get some live reps in order to shake the funk he’s in.

Charlie

August 16th, 2011
9:20 am

Fredi G. is a lousy game / pitcher manager. His on-field decisions are thoughtless. No way Hudson should have been hitting in the 6th. Freddie F. saved his manager in the 9th. With game decisions, most often, Fredi G. does the wrong thing. In that, he is consistent.
Jason Heyward, game in, and game out, continues to disappoint. Apparently his work in the cage changes nothing. He’s a bright young man, but can’t / won’t make adjustments to his swing. He’s fried for 2011. Maybe he’ll figure it out in the off season, or maybe he’ll be a Jeff F, unable to live up to the hype of his first season.

henry from TN

August 16th, 2011
9:23 am

bull-crap to the one that said watching a game on television did not help any idiot should know better than that it helps the tv rating and better rating bring in more money that helps pay the players salaries

[...] Atlanta Braves [...]

feeanch

August 16th, 2011
9:32 am

Jim, 9:11 post had some good insights about looking ahead. My question: do you think Fredi took all that into account? I kind of doubt it. I like Fredi, but think that he still has some maturing to do (as is to be expected) as a manager especially in situations like this. I would have let Costanza steal and Huddy swing away.

Johnny on 9th Street

August 16th, 2011
9:40 am

If you beat SF’s Wilson, that is something to hang your hat on. Wilson is as tough as they come. Great comeback for the “boys of summer”!

Rowsdower

August 16th, 2011
9:46 am

Roll call. Where are you from, Braves fans.

I’m from Austin, Texas. Just south of 1,000 miles from Turner Field. As you can imagine, I don’t get to many home games.

I do watch every Braves game that Lowe doesn’t pitch on TV via MLB Extra Innings.

Brave New World

August 16th, 2011
9:46 am

First of all, GREAT WIN last night! Love the chemistry on this team – they all pull for each other. Last night was one of the most exciting wins of the season. For no scientific reason, I’m saying 93 wins gets the Wild Card. If that’s so, we need to go 22-18 in the remaining 40 games (a .550 winning percentage); the Giants need to go 27-13 (.675), and the Cards would need 28-12 (.700). GO BRAVES!

Rick

August 16th, 2011
9:48 am

“Seriously, those grossly over tattooed arms of Milan are the nastiest looking things I have ever seen on am man’s arms. Why can’t they ask this idiot to at least wear long sleeves when in uniform? It’s embarrassing to me as a Braves fan to have this nut case seen on national TV.”

You can’t even get his name right and label him as a nut case without knowing him, but he’s the idiot? It’s his body and he’s free to have tattoos if he wants them. And he does wear long sleeves when he pitches.

Ralph

August 16th, 2011
9:55 am

When was the last time Chipper played 3 games in a row????????

onlyonce

August 16th, 2011
9:57 am

Where are all the Heyward over Constanza today?

Biggest Brave Fan

August 16th, 2011
10:00 am

People…Quit hating on Bourn… Just because thehits didnt show he smoked the ball three times!

Lukas B.

August 16th, 2011
10:04 am

It amazes me that Fredi is considered to be doing a good job by anyone who is actually watching the games as opposed to simply checking the standings every ten days or so. He makes tactical mistakes almost every game. Bobby made mistakes, too, but the reason we love him is that we ALWAYS won, regardless of losses in free agency, injury depletions, etc. It’s Fredi’s first year and he’s got a much better team this year than Bobby had last year. How much better has Freddie Freeman been than Glaus and Lee? Uggla than Prado/Infante/Conrad? Prado (in left) than Diaz? We’ve got a full season of defined roles and dominant performance for Venters and Kimbrel, Brandon Beachy has been a monster, and for the last third of this season we’ll have a huge upgrade with Bourn in center. How many times out of 100 does a playoff team in year A make a repeat playoff visit in following year B after getting much better in the intervening offseason? The answer: barring calamitous injuries, you should expect that team to make the playoffs every time. A team that underperforms isn’t doing a “great job” simply because it’s still a top four NL team at less than its best. Fredi has cost us 3-5 wins this season, and we’re lucky that we’re so much better than the rest of the field.

For those who think that relative position in the standings is all that matters, I’ll offer an analogy: the United States of America is near the top of the world in most relevant categories of affluence, education, and opportunity. More people want to come here than want to leave, we make a humanitarian impact in the world, and our poor are obese rather than starving (for better or for worse). By most any measure, we’d be considered one of the top 8 most desirable countries to live in. Does that mean that George W. Bush and Barack Obama were and have been completely awesome in every way, and that anyone who would dare to think about questioning them just needs to shut up and “enjoy the wins?” The answer, of course, is no. The least reason for which is that much of “our” success has nothing to do with what Bush or Obama did — much of American wealth, measured by jobs, resources, institutions, or education, is engendered and protected by agents and forces beyond Bush or Obama’s purview or possible influence, just as the excellent yet affordable roster, the deep and talented farm, and the stellar tradition of winning that the Braves enjoy have nothing to do with Gonzalez. We should judge leaders by the decisions they make and the outcomes over which they’re responsible. To give them credit or blame for things they can’t control is foolish, and failing to hold them accountable for the execution of their duties is naive.

Fredi’s decision to bunt Hudson in the sixth, for example, was the equivalent of a bad bet in poker. He got lucky and won the hand, true, but it would be silly to pretend that it was the smart play.

Steve

August 16th, 2011
10:06 am

Chipper should put himself on the DL,he is just a distraction that the team does not need right now.It would also open up a spot for a healthy player.

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