We’re LIVE from Braves (and will homestand stop the fade?)

Now that the Braves have left the "other countries," can they take off again?

Now that the Braves have returned to this "country," they'll try to remember what winning streak feels like.

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Matt Diaz and Alex Gonzalez scored on a single by newcomer Rick Ankiel to give the Braves a 3-0 lead in the first inning.

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.

You don’t need no stinkin’ DVR: Last 5 posts

Falcons’ early hits: Weatherspoon, BVG, Roddy White’s socks

Braves, Wren send right message with deadline trades

Dwight Howard opens up on LeBron, Shaq and Josh’s wedding (sssh)

Roy Oswalt going to Phillies, and Braves need to respond

Blank says Falcons are playoff team again (and maybe more)

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC and Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

522 comments Add your comment

hmm

August 2nd, 2010
6:35 pm

Lotta empty seats in braves country

Weaseal

August 2nd, 2010
6:40 pm

Where is the love?

Sherwin-Williams

August 2nd, 2010
6:41 pm

Jeff when you say there are no reports of dogs “dieing” are you saying that there are no reports of a player applying color to their pet’s buttocks, a la` Russ the Temporary Mascot?

Or did you mean “dying”, as in cessation of life?

Harry

August 2nd, 2010
6:46 pm

will homestand stop the fade? NO

Giggity

August 2nd, 2010
6:48 pm

What kind of move are you referring to regarding Glaus? Freeman? or another trade?

joseph

August 2nd, 2010
6:50 pm

Not time to panic, but if this offense remains enemic much longer it could get ugly rather quickly! We will have a great idea in 10 games where we are headed, I think it could go anyway at this point. Our pitching alone will keep us in the middle of this thing for a while, but eventually we must score some runs!

Smiling Jack

August 2nd, 2010
6:51 pm

Will homestand stop the fade??? Let’s hope so! Let’s play the game! Go Braves!!!!!!!! We’ll still pull for these Braves.

Sam

August 2nd, 2010
6:51 pm

Everyone will feel better if the Braves can win one tonight. It might take a shutout by Hudson though.

Ralph

August 2nd, 2010
6:52 pm

Nothing will stop the faded because they still have stupid ass Bobby Cox.

snellville

August 2nd, 2010
6:52 pm

What this on Resop. We still need all the pitching we can get.

Blu

August 2nd, 2010
6:54 pm

But we have Ankle now! He will hit homers and drive in runs! Haha

Robert

August 2nd, 2010
6:55 pm

They need to bring Freeman up yesterday. Im sick of this glaus guy. I can stand up there and bat .185

Steve

August 2nd, 2010
6:55 pm

Way to be optimistic “Harry.” They have 14 of 17 at home now and the Mutts have been playing WORSE then the Braves. The 3 games on the road are at Houston where they should at least take 2 of 3. It shocks me how fast fans get up. Did you really think the Braves would just keep winning 8 of 10 the rest of the way? They will be fine.

Smiling Jack

August 2nd, 2010
6:56 pm

Jeff, explain why Freeman wouldn’t be called up now as opposed to a month from now on Sept 1. Thanks.

joseph

August 2nd, 2010
6:56 pm

Ralph- Cox’s track record is pretty good to be calling him stupid! I think he is doing a pretty good job with this team and I’ve been a Braves fan 30 years.

Steve

August 2nd, 2010
6:57 pm

Yea Ralph, what a terrible manager he is! I hate it when my favorite team wins the division 14 years in a row. Nobody expected the Braves to be in first place this late in the year yet they are. Bobby has been a lot more aggressive this year. It’s not his fault Glaus and Chipper are struggling. I am sure you could do a much better job though. You going to complain all the time next year when it is Fredi Gonzales?

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
6:59 pm

Cheffy bringin’ the pie baby…

bravesfan5114

August 2nd, 2010
6:59 pm

Could you be any less positive?

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
7:02 pm

Judging by the above pic, good seats still availible in Braves country.

Smiling Jack

August 2nd, 2010
7:02 pm

You know, I read more blog than I actually blog. But, I really hate the amount of effort made to call Bobby Cox or any other of the Braves management team stupid, idiots etc… It’s their job and they are professional and responsible endeavoring to do the best they can with what they have. To bad we have so many more “knowledgable” fan- people who could do a better job…but it’s not their job.

mike

August 2nd, 2010
7:03 pm

Ralph, the Braves are lucky to have Bobby Cox as manager. The talent on this ballclub does not warrant being anywhere near first place. And, by the way, you need to be more grammatically-correct and spell correctly if you are going to call someone stupid, you moron!

Steve

August 2nd, 2010
7:04 pm

“Chef” Tim Dix and (”hmm”) I am pretty sure Jeff or whoever took that picture a while ago and not 10 minutes ago. It’s also a Monday and school is back in for many kids. I am sure there will still be around 25,000 there tonight.

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
7:05 pm

Ralph of “Malph” fame? Potsie said sit on it.

Bob Horner pouts

August 2nd, 2010
7:06 pm

tough road trip…..this is a BIG week….I guess we need the Braves bats to wake-up..?? side note: what’s with Ozzie Guillen..?? The guys that speak Spanish have each other…the guys that speak Japenese have an interpretor…the guys that Bobby dislikes are traded in bad deals…what am I missing..???

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
7:07 pm

Oh and Steve, I figured it was a “still”, cuase I saw no one moving…

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:08 pm

Sherwin Williams — Die, dye, tomato, tomahto . . .

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:09 pm

Giggity — Logical short term would be Hinske or Glaus. I doubt a trade (through waivers) would happen for at least 2 weeks.

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:10 pm

Snellville — What does good pitching have to do with Resop?

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:11 pm

Smiling Jack — I can’t explain it. Maybe they figured they’d give Glaus one more homestand. Just a guess.

Smiling Jack

August 2nd, 2010
7:11 pm

First….first pitch! Go Braves!

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:12 pm

Chef Tim — Good seats are available, but in fairness I took that picture at about 4 p.m.

Steve

August 2nd, 2010
7:12 pm

Jeff, any reason McCann is not in the line-up? I assume because he did not get his usual off day yesterday?

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
7:13 pm

Cutting Glaus is an economic possibility.

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:13 pm

Steve — Looking around, 25,000 is a good guess. Actually not a bad crowd for a Monday night. They’re still coming in.

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:14 pm

Steve — what you said.

Giggity

August 2nd, 2010
7:15 pm

Thanks Jeff! Never got a response before!

"Chef" Tim Dix

August 2nd, 2010
7:16 pm

Could day tripping A. LaRoache slide through waivers? Maybe a Chipper advance?

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Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:16 pm

OK, two on for Mets. Hudson not cooperating with this projected pitchers’ battle.

Steve

August 2nd, 2010
7:18 pm

Thanks! I also read one of Mark Bowman’s blogs on atlantabraves.com and he was talking about our hero, Kenshin Kawakami possibly being sent to the minors. I thought I read somewhere that he has a clause in his contract that states he can’t be sent to the minors. Can you confirm? He sure is wasting a spot on the roster. Only pitched once in a month (thank goodness).

dawg4u

August 2nd, 2010
7:18 pm

How long does Glaus have to hit below .200 before we make a permanent change. He has been awful since June. When the Phillies added Oswalt to their staff it now makes their starting staff better than ours. Thank goodness that our bullpen is better right now but unless we start scoring runs it won’t matter. I say bring Freeman up now. We need Prado to get well real quick also. We need to win at least two of three from both the Mets and Giants to get our mojo back.

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:21 pm

“Chef” Tim — They could do a lot worse than LaRoche. Would have to pay only remainder of his $6 million salary ($2 million or less) for rest of season. He has an option for next season.

Darryl Blackberry

August 2nd, 2010
7:23 pm

If a tree falls in the woods, does anybody care? Enough with the A-Rod homer watch!

Glenn

August 2nd, 2010
7:27 pm

When a local yocal jock declared race over then I new meltdown was coming,they play like old men with young women,got the heart but nothing else!

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:28 pm

Steve — There is no such clause in KK’s contract. Whether there is an “understanding” between Braves and KK, I can’t speak to.

Dan Quayle

August 2nd, 2010
7:28 pm

Potato, potatoe. D@mn Murphy Brown; if it weren’t for her I could have been the laughingstock of the nation for too terms, instead of George Bush!

Too, two, to? Who cares? I’m just a d@mn footnote anyway!

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:29 pm

Darryl — I personally find it hysterical that nobody cares about a guy reaching 600 HR (almost). It says a lot.

Jeff Schultz

August 2nd, 2010
7:30 pm

Diaz killed that pitch. RBI double, 1-0.

BATTER UP

August 2nd, 2010
7:30 pm

This could be the first 0-0 game MLB history!

Todd

August 2nd, 2010
7:33 pm

What were you thinking larry? Run on contact idiot. Man get rid of this lazy stupid jock.