Braves quotes after Sunday’s loss to Mets

**FREDI GONZALEZ

On the rally in ninth and the loss

“The guys battled the whole game, and we had the right guys at the plate in the ninth inning. Even the last strikeout to end the game, I think it surprised [catcher Rob Johnson] that Jason was going to run that hard down to first base and we made it a bang-bang over there at first base. I was thinking with the trajectory of that ball, it looked like it might have been in the dirt and here we go.”

On missed opportunities

“We had some stuff going on early and just couldn’t break it open. And it cost us there at the end. We had a chance to get some runs and they turn a double play in the first inning, and we just couldn’t get a run in early in the game. Niese settled down and did a nice job for them. They kept tacking on those runs late in the game, and ultimately that’s what killed us.”

On Sheets after ragged first couple inning

“He settled down. I think the only pitch that I saw that was out over the plate was that change-up to Valdespin, and he put it right in the wheelhouse. But other than that, a couple of base hits that go through the infield. But he gave us an opportunity to win the game.”

More on the first inning, not scoring after starting game with a double and walk and stolen base

“We get a double and a walk and Bourny steals third, and Prado doesn’t follow him, because it was kind of a late jump and Niese is pretty quick to the plate. And then the next pitch with Chipper at the plate, double play and they get out of the inning. And I think we had another opportunity later on in the game, had a chance to score a run and we didn’t do it. Came back and bit us in the butt.”

Did Prado’s double need to get to the wall for you to send Bourn (from 1st base, would-be tying run)

“Either that or up against the wall [in foul territory]. And it didn’t do either. I’m thinking if it hugs that side wall there, he’s going to spend a little more time digging for it, maybe we have an opportunity for Snit [third-base coach Snitker] to send him. Other than that he had no chance. It would have been really hard to send him there and you’ve got the middle of the order up.”

On 4-2 trip, won two series

“Win series is our goal every time. You like to get greedy when you have a chance to win three. Tip your cap to Niese, who went eight solid innings.”

What was Niese doing that made him so effective?

“I think he was just changing speeds. He did a nice job with the cutter to those left-handers.”

**MARTIN PRADO

When you hit the double, did you think it’d get to the corner and get all three runners in?

“Yeah, man. But they were playing deep. The only thing I could do was go to second and try to get them to throw to second and Michael try to be aggressive. I knew he was running fast and we’d have a chance. But there was no chance because they he didn’t want that run to score. He threw to the cutoff man.”

On the improbable rally that fell short

“I love this team because we battle all the way to the end. We came up short, but we tried. We played hard. That’s all that matters.”

On Mets lefty Niese

“His fastball was kind of sneaky today and was using it a lot in and out, mixing it with the curveball for strikes. We were aggressive but he was throwing a pretty good game. But we always go to the end. You never know what’s going to happen.”

On not going to second when Bourn stole third in first inning

“I didn’t have the jump to go to second. I didn’t want to get caught in-between, so I played it safe. We got J-Hey and Chipper coming up, so I didn’t want to take the risk of getting out at second and ending that rally.”

**BEN SHEETS

Looked like you settled in a little bit after the rough first two innings

“Ha. For a batter or two, right?”

“Just got to find a way to get out the gates better. Give myself a chance to get some momentum. If you know anything about my career you know that first innings are not very good. And I’ve just got to be better, man. Just really got to be better than that.”

On some of the hits being grounders

“They rolled a couple through, David hit a big double, Ike hit a ball. That’s baseball. It’s results. That’s all that matters. They got hits when they needed to.”

It looked like you were feeling for your curveball early

“It just felt a little rolly, didn’t feel like a good power breaking ball. I was tinkering with some things. Just got to work on it between starts, get it back. I didn’t have the good, hard one that looked like a fastball. It looked more like it kind of popped up out of my hand and had a little roll to it. But it’s all stuff that can be fixed. Move forward.”

On feeling stronger later in the game

“I even felt good in the first inning, which normally, like I said, don’t happen. But it’s baseball. If I can get ‘em to hit the balls right at ‘em I tend to have good game. And when they find holes, bad games. It just stinks because the guys battled the whole way. I mean, each run that I gave up all the way through, came back to bite me.”

**CHIPPER JONES

On throw to first nearly skipping away on Heyward’s final-out strikeout

“It needed to skip away a little farther.”

“We just dug ourselves too big a hole tonight. Gave ‘em a scare. That’s what you want to see out of your ballclub when you’re down like that. Be patient. If guys want to give it to you, take it. I think we only got one hit that inning, but we threw a little scare into them.”

One of the more unusual rallies, huh?

“Yeah. If they’re not going to throw strikes, you’ve got to take what they’re going to give you. We threw some good at-bats up there. Juan had a great at-bat. Their lefty [Edgin] was a little wild there to start the inning. So was Francisco. But Jon Rauch saves the day.”

28 comments Add your comment

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:01 am

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:02 am

and second !!!

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:02 am

and third as well !!

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:03 am

straight steal of home !!!

The Grinch

August 13th, 2012
12:29 am

Oh, lord…more cap tipping.

john doe

August 13th, 2012
12:40 am

Another idiot, addy you should join Mixxo and Mitchell.

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:43 am

Enter your crappy comments here

addy

August 13th, 2012
12:44 am

john doe , who art thou son ?

David O'Brien

August 13th, 2012
12:49 am

OTP

August 13th, 2012
6:56 am

At least Sheets is honest about his performance.

Backdoor Slider

August 13th, 2012
7:12 am

FREDI’S BULLPEN USE

More often than not, Fredi uses Martinez when he’s given up on the game — rather than one of his better relievers.

The result? Martinez gave up what turned out to be the winning run.

A far better use of Martinez would have been in yesterday’s victory, when the Braves had a big lead.

I’m more than ready to give up on Fredi.

Buddy Landel

August 13th, 2012
8:12 am

nitpick much? ANY reason to b!tch and moan about Fredi and every t-ball “coach” in the metro area jumps right in.

Buddy Landel

August 13th, 2012
8:16 am

It was a 4-run game. What would you suggest Fredi do? If he brings in his “A” relievers, you b!tch and moan that FG is using his best guys in a game that isn’t even a save opportunity for the OTHER team.

Good Grief Charlie Brown

August 13th, 2012
8:46 am

@Buddy: c’mon, you KNEW the ‘negative nancys’ would be out in force this morning.

the Braves missed some opportunities on offense and Sheets’ wasn’t locating his pitches like in previous starts. like most major league teams, the mutts learned from his first outing against them, and Sheets helped them out a little by leaving some pitches up.

i’m a tad disappointed that we didn’t take advantage of a gnats’ loss, but that’s the way it goes sometimes. just gotta keep winning as many games as possible.

BravesFanInBama

August 13th, 2012
9:08 am

Ya know, it really sucked that they lost…But that 9th inning sure was exciting…Could you imagine if Heyward was just a HALF a step faster? Or if he dove head first (Obviously a terrible idea, but this is just hypothetical). It could have been a crazy win. Oh well. Can’t say we have no offense because they scored 9 runs the night before. Just an off night all around. New series tonight!

Mister Frisky

August 13th, 2012
9:44 am

Uggla and McCann still awful.Hopefully both these guys are moved in off season.

Ekim

August 13th, 2012
9:52 am

I cannot believe that Fredi said you’ve got to tip your hat to Niese, and somebody didn’t jump all over that. Those are always the best, most reasoned, thoughtful comments on the blog.

The team never gave up, battled to the end, and that’s what I want my favorite team to do.

Ken Stallings

August 13th, 2012
10:17 am

Winning ball clubs never quit, and the Braves did not quit in this game. They had a chance to take the lead and it came up a bit short. In the early innings a number of Mets hitters put good pitches in play to score those runs. That’s why you don’t win every game you play in baseball.

Gary

August 13th, 2012
10:25 am

On tough lefthanders…..too many lefty hitters….Uggla needs to do his job in these games…..NIESE AND HAMELS easily shut them down……Johnson has to be inserted in these games…more righthanded help is needed……if playoffs….. are possible..

rosscoebeers

August 13th, 2012
11:12 am

i now live in fl.only get to watch the braves a few games.after the first ining .i stopped watching i knew the game was over.we had a man on 3rd and 1 out.we couldn’t get him home,.a simple bunt would of done it.everybody makes to much money…

ChipperisGod

August 13th, 2012
12:27 pm

I’m usually a huge criticizer of Fredi, but why not pitch Martinez in that situation? He’s been great recently and had a few days rest. It saves EOF, Durbin and it’s a five run game at that point. Sure we wish Martinez didn’t give up a run there, but it wasn’t a bad move by Fredi at all, IMO.

Preston Thompson

August 13th, 2012
1:18 pm

Well, what about the rally in the first inning. Bourn on third, one out and Chipper rolls into a double play. I know y’all are sick of me but when you play for 2nd, you lack the desire to go for 1st. A run in the first would have changed to entire psyche of the second inning. But it’s another lose, when the Nationals lose.

Ken Stallings

August 13th, 2012
4:33 pm

Are you serious? It is called going from first to third on a single — something Bourn is perhaps best at in baseball today. You trying to say Prado should have gotten thrown out at second trying to stretch an obvious single into a hopeless double? Braves lost — it’s baseball — it happens!

bobbymahlon

August 13th, 2012
5:04 pm

Heyward should have never swung at the last pitch it was in the dirt but he does not have all day to make up his his mind if it was a strike or a ball. They tried to give us that game so that is why I hate to see the game end with a guy striking out on a pitch in the dirt. Heyward and Uggla both fanned three times last night which hurts. I find watching a game is hard compared to being there when you can see the whole field and not only what a camera shows you.

Ken Stallings

August 13th, 2012
5:06 pm

Actually, you were speaking of why Prado did not steal second when Bourn stole third. Well, that would be equally bad as getting thrown out stretching a single to a double. Prado did not have the lead to steal. Bourn did not coordinate his decision to steal since he had to get the right read on the pitcher. There was no way to coordinate that stuff. Prado at first decided he would be thrown out attempting to steal. Bourn decided he could steal third. Both made the right choice. BTW: ESPN color men Orel Herchiser and Terry Francona both agreed that both players made the right choice, and I think they know a bit more about baseball than we do, wouldn’t you say?

bobbymahlon

August 13th, 2012
5:15 pm

I hope when Simmons comes back he takes over where he left off but I’m afraid it will be hard to do. We need that bat at the bottom of the lineup what with Uggla not hitting followed by Yanash and than the pitcher.

Ron M

August 13th, 2012
5:30 pm

I think the Braves did very well for the series, obviously you want to win when the Nats lose but the Braves did win when they did also. It is difficult to sweep any team in baseball as every one knows. I do wish Uggla and McCann and any other Brave would hit in every situation but that doesn’t happen alot. I mean a good average is 300, and thats hitting only a 3rd of the time!

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August 13th, 2012
9:03 pm

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