The last time the Braves played a home game was July 22. They defeated San Diego 8-0. They led the National League East by seven games.
The good news? There are no reports of any player’s dog dying during the road trip.
They Braves are still on top of the National League East Division — just not by much — and we’re about to find out to what degree they’re fading.
They open a seven-game home stand tonight against the New York Mets. Their division lead is down to 2 1/2 games over Philadelphia, which has won nine of the last 11. The Braves are coming off lost three straight road series losses to to Florida, Washington and Cincinnati. Road trip record: 3-6.
More to the point, they’re only 7-9 since the All-Star break. That doesn’t constitute a slide but if Troy Glaus (the subject of my column later) doesn’t show a pulse soon, or guys like Chipper Jones and Brian McCann don’t start carrying things a little offensively, things could be drifting back toward the days of hoping for a 3-2 win.
Martin Prado has been put on the disabled list. (In other moves, Diory Hernandez has been brought up from Gwinnett and Chris Resop has been waived.)
For what it’s worth, Glaus is back in the lineup at first base and is batting sixth, after being rested Sunday. He is, as you know, been a trade wreck. He hasn’t hit a home run since June 19 and he’s batting .182 in July.
Glaus denies he feels tired or worn down. Funny, because when I asked hitting coach Terry Pendleton, he said, “Sure he’s tired.” I’ll have more on Glaus’s woes later and the likelihood that at some point soon here, the Braves may have to make a move.
Odds are against anybody ending a batting slump tonight. The pitching match-up is Tim Hudson vs. Johan Santana. Let’s see if they can give Hudson more than the one run they gave Tommy Hanson in Sunday’s 2-1 loss at Cincinnati.
I’ll be here all game, blogging live.
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