Hold onto your seats, September is here

(Carroll Rogers is filling in for David O’Brien today.)

Well, here we are. September 1. Thirty games between the Braves and a possible return to the postseason for the first time since 2010. The Braves venture into what was very treacherous territory last year – need I remind you of last year’s E.C. as my esteemed colleague Mark Bradley calls it. Frankly the Braves might as well just get right back into action after last night’s oddly familiar kind of loss to the Phillies (extra innings, blown save by Craig Kimbrel, reminiscent of the last game of the season last year.)

So the 4 p.m. FOX start is probably a good thing today as the Braves didn’t have much time to sit around and think about anything. I do think it was telling when both Chipper Jones and Michael Bourn talked about how they didn’t lose any ground in the wild card last night. At 6 ½ games behind the Nationals, even though Stephen Strasburg has only two or three starts left, and the Braves have three games left with the Nats, I think the wild card is the more realistic goal now.

And looking at it that way, the Braves lead is much less than last year. They were up 8 ½ games in the wild card on Sept. 5 last year. Heading into today’s game, they had a three-game lead on the Cardinals for the first wild card spot, and they’ve got at 3 ½ game lead on the Pirates, 4 ½ game lead on the Dodgers. Of course, two teams make it this year to a one-game playoff, so it’s not the same that way either.

“This is a totally different year,” Bourn said last night. “First of all, we had a way bigger lead last year than we do this year….You have to block that out of your head. You have to take that and throw it in the bag. You have to block it out. Don’t worry about that. That was last year. We’ve got to be able to turn it around this year and show them that we’re a different team.”

The Braves finished August 15-14 and frankly could use a chance to turn the page. As realcj10 said last night “Start the Sept mojo magic tmrw.” That didn’t exactly sound like a team leader who’s apprehensive about the month and what it entails. They’ll need to quickly with both Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels to come in this weekend series.

September call-ups

I’m going to make this blog really snappy because I’m dealing with some quick deadlines with college football going on today. So let me get right to matters. As expected, the Braves called up Lyle Overbay, Peter Moylan, Jose Constanza and catcher J.C. Boscan in the first wave of September call-ups. The Braves will add a couple more pitchers on Tuesday after Gwinnett’s season is over. My guess would be Cory Gearrin and Anthony Varvaro.

Moylan was genuinely excited about his return, said it almost brought him to tears the other day when he found out. He didn’t see it coming after he’d struggled with some inconsistency coming off shoulder surgery. It’s proved a lot more challenging than the Tommy John recovery. Be on the lookout for a note about that, as well as Overbay.

Fredi Gonzalez is sitting the left-handed hitting Bourn today and putting Reed Johnson in center field vs. Lee. The numbers make it look like a pretty clear decision: Bourn is 0-for-15 in his career against Lee, while Johnson is 5-for-11 (.455) against him with two doubles, one homer and two walks.

Braves lineup:

1. Martin Prado LF

2. Reed Johnson CF

3. Jason Heyward RF

4. Chipper Jones 3B

5. Freddie Freeman 1B

6. Brian McCann C

7. Dan Uggla 2B

8. Paul Janish SS

9. Tim Hudson P

Brian McCann did break out the glasses last night and plans to again today. He said he had some problems with the wind in San Francisco and the dry air in San Diego. He put the glasses on back home and he felt better with them, so he’s going to take it day-by-day and use them if he feels the need.

More on the collision

For those of you who thought Chipper Jones should have just slid into home plate last night instead of drawing some serious contact with catcher Erik Kratz, I asked Chipper about that this morning and he didn’t see any of the plate.

“Where am I going to slide?” he said. “He’s going to come down right on top of me and bury me. I didn’t see any plate. I’ve played this game for a long time and I’ve had many opportunities. If he gives me a crease, I’ll take it. But he’s 6-4 he’s 260. He’s a big man and I couldn’t see any of home plate.”

Chipper said it was probably the biggest collision of his career.

“I hit (Mike) Piazza a couple times, nothing like that,” Jones said. “Piazza was more one of those guys who would sit on home plate. He learned under (Mike) Scioscia. He’s pretty hard to move when he’s sitting on home plate. When the throw is high and up the line it gives you an opportunity to get up under there.”

Fredi was just glad it wasn’t somebody shorter like Carlos Ruiz who might have upended Jones at the plate. As it was, Chipper felt fine and ready to play Saturday afternoon.

Speaking of feeling good, shortstop Andrelton Simmons took bp on the field today as he continues to gear up to start a minor league rehabilitation assignment on Tuesday with an eye toward a mid-September return. He’s a pretty happy guy these days as the last two months have been tough on him, out with a broken hand.

“It was a big relief,” Simmons said of getting cleared for all baseball activities Friday by hand specialist Dr. Gary Lourie. “I’ve been getting stalled so much. I’m feeling ready to do stuff and they were trying to be careful. I understand why they were trying to be careful but me being me I’m ready to go. I was waiting for the ok to start doing stuff, so getting that ok yesterday was big for me.”

Time to post and get on with things.

1,014 comments Add your comment

David from Athens, Alabama

September 1st, 2012
3:31 pm

McFann :Ô: :Ô: :ô:

September 1st, 2012
3:32 pm

Thanks for the new Blog, Ms. Rogers.

jeffrey d You don’t play the lottery because McCann wears contacts?

I don’t play the Lottery because I don’t need something else to be wrong at!… ;) But I’ve been spreading mis-information…I could work for the National Media!!… 8O :cry:

kenhotlanta

September 1st, 2012
3:33 pm

First, for the first time?

TheOnlyBravesFan

September 1st, 2012
3:33 pm

Thanks CR! Go Braves.

We will not collapse this year, Bank on it!!!

kenhotlanta

September 1st, 2012
3:35 pm

Oh well. This Todd Gurley looks like the real deal, and Marshall is supposed to be just as good. Go Dawgs!

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:35 pm

Thanks, Carroll!

Carroll Rogers

September 1st, 2012
3:35 pm

count_schemula

September 1st, 2012
3:35 pm

Jeff R

September 1st, 2012
3:35 pm

Cliff Lee is going to tough today. Pitching much better than his record indicates.

VaBravesFan

September 1st, 2012
3:36 pm

Usually every season when the Braves play the Phillies on FOX the game is aired in my area, always… But not anymore now that the Nats are the best team in the east.

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:36 pm

Hello everyone! Even if the collapse happens. I’m still going to root for my team, and next year will be 30 seasons, as a Brave Fan. We still have 30 games left. Any thing can happen in baseball.

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:36 pm

Repots from last blog
************************************

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
2:40 pm

George George – why are you on the blog? Shouldn’t you be at work?

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:36 pm

Repots from last blog
************************************

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
2:40 pm

George George – why are you on the blog? Shouldn’t you be at work?

McFann :Ô: :Ô: :ô:

September 1st, 2012
3:36 pm

count_s When you see McCann do that bug out thing he does at the plate, he’s trying to juice the eye. It’s a combo itch/burn.

Yeah. It did seem liked it’d been more pronounced lately…

Amber Girl

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

Hello everyone DUMB Amber is here. Would someone please tell me why Braves are content with wildcard? I still think they could win division. Am I wrong?

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

September would start well with a win. Last night was terrible.

McFann :Ô: :Ô: :ô:

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

“Repots”? Is that kinda like you’re “replanting” the post?…

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

Still plenty of time to hold on to the Wild Card.

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

When you see McCann do that bug out thing he does at the plate

You mean this thing?

http://ts3.mm.bing.net/images/thumbnail.aspx?q=4594834028758566&id=281cb3f2290012eca803a6ed2a79db6f

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:38 pm

“Repots”? Is that kinda like you’re “replanting” the post?…

haha! Doh!

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:39 pm

We get so caught up in the Nats we forget we still have the Wild Card.

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
3:40 pm

I do dislike it when the Braves are on FOX. The game is rarely televised in my area and the game is blacked out on MLB.TV, thus preventing me from watching a team that I watch play everyday. At least I have MLB Audio.

count_schemula

September 1st, 2012
3:40 pm

“You mean this thing?”

I lol’d

McFann :Ô: :Ô: :ô:

September 1st, 2012
3:41 pm

You mean this thing?

Darn you, jeffrey d!!… :evil:

haha! Doh!

Heh heh… :P

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:41 pm

Sure I’m nervous, but that’s baseball……I’m excited at the same time. Don’t like to lose either, but that’s the why there is 30 games left.

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
3:43 pm

Holy cow Christian LeMay is skinny

Woody Woodward

September 1st, 2012
3:44 pm

Cab–if you’re still around, take it easy on my Warriors today.

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:44 pm

It’s time to turn the page of Sept., and win this month. Time to shake off the bad Karma, and play some good baseball. Braves could sure use a change of course.

Ward

September 1st, 2012
3:46 pm

Have a good one! Talk after the game. Gottta have some kind of hope. Peace my friends, and “Go!!!!!Braves!!!!!”

VaBravesFan

September 1st, 2012
3:46 pm

Being able to watch just about all of the Nationals games and knowing alot of fans and so on.. I really think Michael Bourn is a Nat next season. They lack a real leadoff man and a real CFer, there willing to spend money, plus there GM Mike Rizzo has always been a huge fan of Bourn. He’s attempted to trade for Bourn in the past. Also has a ton of interest in the now injured Denard Span. I believe they will be determined to land him. Even if it means they will have to figure out how to handle LaRoche and Morse going forward.

TheOnlyBravesFan

September 1st, 2012
3:55 pm

Cliff Lee vs. Tim Hudson…. Cliff has had a “rough” year, going 3-7 with a 3.67 ERA… he’s turned it up lately, with a 2.91 ERA in his last 6 starts. Tim Hudson is 13-4 with a 3.57 ERA, and an ERA of 3.19 in his last 6 starts.

The Phillies have done well against Timmy this year, with a .250/.308/.438/.745 line against him. In 52 PAs, they have gathered 12 Hits (3 doubles, 2HR) and 6 RBI along with 2 BB vs. 9 Ks. The lifetime batting line for the Phillies players against Tim Hudson is .245/.321/.432/.753

The Braves have yet to face Lee all year. Against him lifetime, the Braves batters have a .243/.284/.407/.691 line. The only batters who are yet to face him are Pastornicky, Boscan, and Francisco.


Prado 4-19 (2 doubles) and 1 RBI… 7 Ks .211/.211/.316/.526

Johnson 5-11 (1 HR, 2 doubles) with 1 RBI… 2 BB, 2 K .455/.538/.909/1.448

Heyward 1-4 ( triple) with 1 BB, 1 K .250/.400/.750/1.150

Jones 7-18 (4 doubles, 1 HR) with 5 RBIs, 3 K .389/.389/.778/1.167

Freeman 2-13, 5 Ks .154/.214/.154/.368

McCann 6-18 (2 doubles) with 1 RBI, 1 BB, 5 Ks .333/.368/.444/.813

Uggla 4-16 (2 doubles, 1 HR) with 2 RBI, 1 BB, 6 Ks .250/.294/.563/.857

Janish 3-8 with 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K .375/.444/.375/.819

Hudson 0-2 with 2 Ks

ChrisfromSacramento, Ca

September 1st, 2012
3:57 pm

Feeanch

September 1st, 2012
3:59 pm

If their is one thing are skoolz could do bettor it wud shure be too teach are adults to have Ben much bettor spellers. Lol

No one can blame auto-correct for their just plain idiocy. I’m just constantly amazed at how many people do not know basic spelling and grammar. Unreal.

count_schemula

September 1st, 2012
4:01 pm

I’m a Braves fan and Miami Hurricanes fan. I gots no place to hide.

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
4:01 pm

Oh the game’s on Fox? So I’ve got time to wash my car before it starts

richbrave

September 1st, 2012
4:02 pm

Sure FOX won’t show the YANKEES against whoever instead of the BRAVES. After all, they’re playing the PHILLIES. Not much interest in NYC where the O’s are the opposition.

Jeff R

September 1st, 2012
4:04 pm

It’s time to turn the page of Sept., and win this month. Time to shake off the bad Karma, and play some good baseball. Braves could sure use a change of course.

Good for you, Ward!

Powderfinger

September 1st, 2012
4:04 pm

It sure has been discouraging lately…

braveslover

September 1st, 2012
4:05 pm

Seems to me we pay a boatload of money to direct tv for the MLB package and yet get blacked out on FOX and the MLB channels. I talked to Direct TV about this and they said it is the decision of the home team on whether to black out or not. My position is we pay direct tv for these games so why are they not putting pressure on major league baseball to not allow teams to black out games anywhere when teams play on FOX. Direct tv, major league baseball and home teams who black out the mlb channels are ripping off fans. Shame on fricking all of them.

ChrisfromSacramento, Ca

September 1st, 2012
4:05 pm

I admit I was wrong about Hurtward. So far, THIS year.

September folks. Keep the sharp objects away and hope our Braves hold on.

This past week in SF. Many of the Braves players could not have been nicer to my wife and I. Lots of great memories and momentos.

PDXBrave

September 1st, 2012
4:06 pm

Agree with TheOnlyBravesFan. Braves won’t collapse but it will be a tight race with some ups and downs the last 30 games.

count_schemula

September 1st, 2012
4:07 pm

Heyward is good to go for the next decade. He will only get better.

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:09 pm

Brava

September 1st, 2012
4:09 pm

Thank you, Carroll.

Go Braves!!!

the truth...

September 1st, 2012
4:09 pm

Fredi’s astute lineup…………

McCann behind the plate;
Day game after a night game;
Lefty vs Lefty;
Can’t see….

Fredi ….Manager of the year…………yeah….

chipontheroad

September 1st, 2012
4:11 pm

hide the kool-aid c is back

Ryan

September 1st, 2012
4:12 pm

Phils swept Nats last time they played and were not as good as them so Phils Fearless Freddi team.

derek k

September 1st, 2012
4:15 pm

Here we go another popout fest from Mac…it would be nice to move the runners over…that means bunt! Play small ball if your gonna win guys come on its seriously pissn me off!!!

Bill

September 1st, 2012
4:16 pm

Carroll,is Baker in the house are still driving on I-75?

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:17 pm

John Mayberry is a below average player, yet he continues to kill the Braves.

Bill

September 1st, 2012
4:18 pm

1st and Phillies up already 1-0

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:19 pm

I am only listening on the radio, but it seems that Dan Uggla’s failure to turn the sharp grounder from Howard into an out was costly.

Carroll Rogers

September 1st, 2012
4:19 pm

Baker was supposed to be here at game time, Bill….drove to northern virginia last night then flew to ATL this afternoon. talk about a rough travel night.

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:19 pm

That’s it, Uggla is officially worthless.

Ryan

September 1st, 2012
4:24 pm

Watch Lee go through are lineup with strike out look for this team to get shutout today and tomorrow unless we hit a HR. Fire Freddi the loser.

BFChris27

September 1st, 2012
4:25 pm

Thanks 4 New Blog!

Ryan

September 1st, 2012
4:25 pm

OH McCann and Uggla go hitless today.

the truth...

September 1st, 2012
4:25 pm

Uggla was officially worthless before that………….

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
4:27 pm

Can we try to keep it together a little bit?

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:28 pm

Well, we knew Uggla couldn’t hit the ball, he could at least have the courtesy to catch it.

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:28 pm

Heyward with yet another weak at bat where he got jammed.

MVPrado14

September 1st, 2012
4:28 pm

Did Lee even break a sweat in the first?

jeffrey d

September 1st, 2012
4:30 pm

No? Okay then.

Bill

September 1st, 2012
4:31 pm

Thanks Carroll..

1991 braves

September 1st, 2012
4:31 pm

Typical Hudson Ist inning. Gives up 3 hits, but only one run this time. IF, the braves make the playoffs, and that is a mighty big IF, and they start Hudson and his sinker that doesn’t sink until the 3 or 4th inning, then the braves deserve to lose. There is no way Hudson or anyone else starts ahead of Medlen in game one if the braves make playoffs. You have to put your best pitcher on the mound in a do or die one game playoff. Unfortunately for braves fans, Fredi the brilliant one will start Hudson.

Don Corleone

September 1st, 2012
4:31 pm

Choke #1–First inning. Uggla drops a grounder and ends up costing the Braves a run.

the truth...

September 1st, 2012
4:31 pm

Uggla’s defense is not his problem………….

He is so muscled up all he can do is upper cut trying to hit the long ball…………

nolie

September 1st, 2012
4:32 pm

Since I’am not a braves fan It’s easy for me to see the stupid decisions that have made the braves a second rate team…cowdogit

if you are not a Braves fan (no surprise) why are you here pestering us with your foolish comments?
just askin’

usnavyvolfaninva

September 1st, 2012
4:32 pm

Nats up 3 on the Cards in the first and threatening for more….I guess we’re rooting for the ‘Nats now?

Juan

September 1st, 2012
4:34 pm

Hey guys in Atlanta….The Games is on Fox….what announcer did get …..I live outside atlanta and i hear the Phillis announcer on Fox…Including that bozo of Mitch William

N8

September 1st, 2012
4:34 pm

Uggla’s physique has considerably less to do with his swing, than his unwillingness to take a ball where it’s pitched.

Mark McGwire didn’t seem to have much trouble with his huge body, nor did Barry Bonds.

All steroids jokes to the side. Uggla’s Popeye arms don’t prevent him from being a good hitter.

His brain does.

Ryan

September 1st, 2012
4:34 pm

Hudson o you wish you were pitching against the Braves . Hell if we cant beat SD the Phils should kick are asses. We will get are wish this winter by firing Freddi and blowing this team up . Bourn good-bye you cant hit in Aug. and Sept. Need a catcher not a DH and a second baseman that can hit is weight. Sorry but we will hace a hard time beating the Rockies next .

N Nine

September 1st, 2012
4:35 pm

Bats will finish with a nice double digits cushion. Go nats beat them cards..

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:35 pm

Prediction: The Braves back into the wildcard play-in game, lose, and all during the offseason Frank Wren gives us all a big “told ya so” about how his stand-pat offense and five #3 starters got to the playoffs.

VaBravesFan

September 1st, 2012
4:35 pm

Gotta love playing from behind at the start.

N8

September 1st, 2012
4:35 pm

No. We’re rooting for another collapse so Wren can go get a guy HE actually wants to run the dugout.

Looks like the Braves players want that too. Because that’s the road they are going down.

Capt.Mudd

September 1st, 2012
4:37 pm

Hi People: Nice Saturday for a big win!

nolie

September 1st, 2012
4:38 pm

C’mon, we all know that they will never win another game….

MVPrado14

September 1st, 2012
4:41 pm

It’s not that they won’t win another game … it’s that they won’t win ENOUGH games.

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:41 pm

Chipper has cooled considerable lately, as has the whole lineup for that matter though.

Ryan

September 1st, 2012
4:41 pm

Chip and Joe Braves have all these games with teams under 500 and Nats have 7 with Cards well they are kicking there ass while we try to score a run. Nats will win over us by 10 games or more. everybody is wrong as saying they will go after Bourn thy have no place for him to play on that team.

MVPrado14

September 1st, 2012
4:42 pm

Whoo-hoo. Way to go, Freddie! Now McCann and Uggla can strand you on first.

count_schemula

September 1st, 2012
4:42 pm

“Nats up 3 on the Cards in the first and threatening for more….I guess we’re rooting for the ‘Nats now?”

Actually, if they are playing the Cards, Giants, LA or Pittsburgh, yes.

usnavyvolfaninva

September 1st, 2012
4:42 pm

See, nolie, I don’t say things like that, b/c even though I’m kidding and everyone knows it, things like that have a tendency to turn out to be true.

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:43 pm

I wish McCann could get things figured out at the plate again. This is three straight years that he has struggled horribly in late August and September.

the truth...

September 1st, 2012
4:44 pm

I disagree on the muscled up issue….but neither of us can prove it…………

I agree though on the muscle between the ears……………AWOL

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:45 pm

There was the obligatory Uggla strike out. Only two more strike outs and he will meet his quota of three for the day.

Capt.Mudd

September 1st, 2012
4:45 pm

Please pooch kick his ……

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:45 pm

two strikes…time for a wild-azz swing

Capt.Mudd

September 1st, 2012
4:45 pm

Please pooch kick his ……

the truth...

September 1st, 2012
4:46 pm

McCann hits into a one out double play….

Danny does what he does best..

All is well for Cliff Lee

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:47 pm

Did anybody else’s game feed on Fox just die?

Tomahawk Mafia

September 1st, 2012
4:48 pm

September is starting in predictable fashion.

Brava

September 1st, 2012
4:48 pm

MVPrado14

September 1st, 2012
4:48 pm

“Did anybody else’s game feed on Fox just die?”

It must have taken it’s cue from the Braves’ offense

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:48 pm

OK, it came back on just in time to see Huddy throw a gopher ball

MVPrado14

September 1st, 2012
4:49 pm

Well, 0-1 in September 2012

Lil' Barry Bailout

September 1st, 2012
4:50 pm

Our big bats will get these two runs back…no problem.

Dum-Bass

September 1st, 2012
4:51 pm

Wonder which the Braves will run out of first, days or excuses for losses?

bronkelliott

September 1st, 2012
4:52 pm

seriously, how long can the Braves continue to carry McCann ? when is enough?

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