Flow and Hech, the new Starsky and Hutch: Braves 5, Marlins 0

There was an announcement this week: scientists have apparently discovered a new state of matter: topological superconductivity.  I don’t have a great Braves tie-in to this discovery, but some have come to expect non-Braves-related intros from me.  So if you’re into stable qubits, I’m sure you’re pretty excited right now and you can pretty much stop reading.

Last week, JamesD asked me how many times teams hit six or more  home runs in a 9 inning game without winning, as the Braves managed against the Mets, losing 10-8.  The answer is 23 times, including 3 teams that hit 7 home runs and lost, which is the record.

Date Batting Team Homers Winner
19300512 CHN 6 NY1
19320813 NY1 6 BRO
19500623 NYA 6 DET
19570605 NY1 6 MLN
19610608 MLN 6 CIN
19620529 CHN 6 MLN
19650427 PHI 6 SFN
19710809 DET 6 BOS
19800531 BOS 6 MIL
19850423 CAL 6 OAK
19910803 OAK 6 MIN
19950528 DET 7 CHA
19960630 LAN 6 COL
19990710 NYA 6 NYN
20020702 DET 6 CHA
20040808 DET 7 BOS
20070828 BAL 6 TBA
20100521 TOR 6 ARI
20100924 NYA 6 BOS
20160625 CHA 7 TOR
20170817 CHN 6 CIN
20180726 CHA 6 ANA
20190815 ATL 6 NYN

So I won’t say it’s common, but it’s happened every year the last four years.  And this was the second time for the Braves, but the last time it was the Milwaukee Braves: 2 home runs from Mathews, and homers from Aaron, Adcock, Spahn (despite the homer, he was pinch-hit for later in the game by Charlie Lau), and Frank Thomas (the Much Smaller Hurt) in another 10-8 loss.  See?  Baseball isn’t that different, except that Braves pitchers used to hit homers every once in a while. 

In the only other game to involve the Braves, in 1962, Ernie Banks hit 3, joined by Billy Williams, Bob Will and George Altman, but the Cubs fell to the Braves, 11-9.  Lew Burdette got the win in relief.

Speaking of relief, many people like playing bad teams: I hate it, because every loss feels so much worse than a win feels good.  Economists have a name for this: (big surprise) loss aversion, and some think it makes people behave irrationally, though I’m partial to the recent research of the improbably named Gerd Gigerenzer, who disagrees.  If loss aversion really made you irrational, you would, if given the power, substitute a game with the Dodgers for a game with the Marlins.  I don’t care how much you dislike losing to bad teams – nobody would do that.  Now, having finally dispensed with physics, history and behavioral economics, we can proceed to the recap. 

Roger, yesterday: “Not that it’s a bad thing, but couldn’t we have a game sometime where the Braves just go out and score a bunch and the pitchers shut the other team down and the Braves win in a walk?”  Well, I’m not sure that 5-0 is really that much better than 5-1, but the Braves scored early, using their usual powerhouses, Flow and Hech (which sounds like a bad 70’s cop show) to put up 3, and then didn’t give up any.  Some obscure player named Acuña added a homer for another couple of runs, and the bullpen (in this case Newk and Tomlin) were Braves-perfect.  The downside? Those three hits (two homers and a triple) were the only 3 hits the Braves managed. (40 previous teams have scored 5 runs in 3-hit efforts and won their games, if you care.) Look.  The Marlins are just not a good team.  But everyone else gets to play them, so we get to play them too.  So it’s a one paragraph recap.  Even the loquacious stumble from time to time.

We play these guys again tomorrow.  We have our ace on the mound.  That guarantees nothing, but it does have a lot of promise.

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Author: JonathanF

Alive since 1956. Braves fan since 1966. The first ten years were pretty much wasted. Exiled to Yankees/Mets territory in 1974 --- bearable only with TBS followed by MLB.TV.

73 thoughts on “Flow and Hech, the new Starsky and Hutch: Braves 5, Marlins 0”

  1. Per DOB – “Braves scored 5 runs without a single or double, just the eighth time in the last 112 seasons that a team scored as many runs as that without benefit of a single or double. The most runs ever scored without a single or double was seven.”

  2. I thought 5 runs on 3 hits would be rare. 40 teams winning games with that combo is lower than I thought it would be. But that’s about as exciting as this game gets, a statistical boxscore oddity. Yes, I would like to hear more about topological superconductivity too.

  3. Thank you for the recap, JonathanF!

    Pretty sure Max and I made eye contact, so I can die happy. Was also sitting around Ryan Klesko and Phil Niekro, which was neat. Seeing an Acuña homer in person was the cherry on top.

  4. Sending out another batch of shirts tomorrow. Send me an email (or a direct message if you’re on Twitter) if you’re interested!

    cothrjr at hotmail dot com

  5. Love your recaps JonathanF. Sorry for the delayed reply. Was flying from PDX to JFK yesterday. I’ll be in the Hyundai Club level. Section 115.

  6. @2,3: The link didn’t help? Then I suspect the full report at https://arxiv.org/pdf/1906.01179.pdf won’t be much better. But the problem with making quantum computing practical is getting a way to store quantum data. Cool things down close to absolute zero and things behave differently in lots of ways that you can measure stably. Topological superconductivity is one of them.

    @6: Still not sure whether I can make it tomorrow. But write me at webmaster at wongpool dot com and I’ll let you know.

  7. By the way, the Marlins starter Caleb Smith got two doubles last night, so I checked out Julio Teheran’s splits against pitchers. It’s striking:

    All NL pitchers, 2019:
    vs. pitcher: .126/.159/.159
    vs. non-p: .259/.331/.446
    (Non-pitchers have an OPS .459 points higher than pitchers.)

    Braves pitchers, 2019:
    vs. pitcher: .163/.197/.189
    vs. non-p: .266/.344/.440
    (Non-pitchers have an OPS .397 points higher than pitchers.)

    Julio Teheran, career:
    vs. pitcher: .154/.173/.211
    vs. non-p: .242/.314/.406
    (Non-pitchers have an OPS .335 points higher than pitchers.)

    Julio Teheran, 2019:
    vs. pitcher: .324/.375/.378
    vs. pitcher: .225/.326/.378
    (Non-pitchers have an OPS .49 points lower than pitchers.)

    It ain’t just your lying eyes.

  8. I’m sure we could work out a package for Betts. We can’t, nor should we, keep all of the prospects, and the outfield could look pretty thin outside of Acuna next season if they were to roll with Riley in LF and Moreneckis in RF.

  9. Something like Waters, Inciarte, and a second line pitching prospect like Muller for one year of Betts? That sound about right, or is that too much of an overpay?

  10. I would have little interest in Betts at any price the Sox would offer. POSSIBLY if an extension is negotiated into the deal, but then I don’t think Betts would accept an extension like I would propose (maybe 4 years beyond next).

  11. Having Betts for 2020 would be a blast, BUT he’s in his last year of Arb and made $20 this year. He could realistically ask for $30-$35 in arb this year.

    Seat Painter’s proposal is probably right and would leave ATL with Riley at 3B, Kakes/Pache, Acuna and Betts in OF and virtually no money to spend.

    Acuna
    Albies
    Freeman
    Betts
    Riley
    Kakes/Pache
    Swanson
    Unknown Catcher
    Soroka

    That’s a nice looking lineup though.

  12. IMO, trading for Betts would be a terrible use of resources as he’ll likely make 25ish million in his last year of arb AND cost a fortune in prospects. Can’t pay out on both sides for one year.

  13. Thank you, JonathanF. You know stuff. Glad it’s not testable.

    Cyroka on the bump tonight. Get him some early runs, boys.

    Go Braves.

  14. Wish I could claim it, but stole it from another site, either Tomahawk Take or Talking Chop I think.

    I only steal from the best.

  15. I would be surprised if the Braves really pursued a trade for Betts, but I won’t be surprised if they state that they’re in the market for an OF. My hope is for Donaldson to return and for them to find someone who could be an upgrade over Markakis or a gap filler in LF if Riley doesn’t make the needed adjustments at the plate.

  16. @25 I’m with you. I’m sure the Braves will do their due diligence on Betts, if he does indeed become available. I don’t think he’ll be all that available though, unless someone ponies up an elite prospect such as Pache. The Sox could realistically just keep him and hope to contend.

    I’d rather keep the prospects and spend the money it takes to bring Josh back at the hot corner. I haven’t given up on Riley, but I’m not sold on him either. At any rate, I’d rather see them let him try to make the adjustments he needs in LF. If he doesn’t get it, they can call Pache up. If they don’t feel Pache is ready, COF bats are always available.

  17. If it came down to choosing between trading for Betts or resigning Donaldson to something in the neighborhood of 3/65M-ish, I would hope the Braves go for the Bringer of Rain. A line-up next year of:

    Acuna
    Albies
    Freeman
    Donaldson
    Riley/Markakis/Waters
    Swanson
    Inciarte/Pache
    Catcher/(McCann?)
    Pitcher

    looks pretty darned good to me.

  18. @30 I’m really hoping for the best regarding Donaldson. I suspect a lineup could look like:

    CF Acuna
    2B Albies
    1B Freeman
    3B Donaldson
    RF Markakis
    SS Swanson
    LF Riley
    C Flowers
    P Pitcher

    I don’t know that Inciarte will still be with the team, and I think Acuna has shown himself capable out there. Riley offers potential as a masher in LF, and Donaldson would be the natural best case in the off-season to keep a very potent lineup together.

    They need to find a new catcher, and it’s easier to focus on catcher if you’re not simultaneously looking for another clear cut starter somewhere else like LF. If Waters or Pache are gonna push for playing time, I’d rather they push Riley because I doubt Kakes will give us anything less than his standard, which seems to always be good enough for playing time.

  19. Don’t know if Cervelli has much left in the tank, but in 2018 he was worth 2.6 bWAR. It’s worth a shot.

  20. Hopefully he can manage the staff, call a good game, keep Flowers rested, and put the bat on the ball every now and again. AA is definitely attempting to not leave defense lacking where it counts with the additions of Cervelli, Hamilton, and Adeiny.

  21. I like the Cervelli signing.

    There’s a line of thinking that relievers are basically fungible, which I somewhat disagree with. When you really examine things though, aren’t catchers then by the same logic? If you’re not paying a premium at the position, what does one give you that another doesn’t, sans the top 2 or 3 catchers in the game? And why pay a premium at a position where you can get the same production potential from a COF bat for 1/4 the cost?

    Cervelli will call a good game and play solid D behind the plate. He’s also well respected in Pittsburgh. Sure he might not hit a lot anymore, but how many catchers do? He’s at most just a fill in for McCann, anyway. If he takes good care of the young Braves pitching, where Flowers has failed this season, how is that not a win?

  22. @39 Totally agree. And this, especially after the string of emergency signings to shore up the bench and defense, show that AA and LM are taking our chances this year very seriously, which is heartening to see.

  23. Gerd Gigerenzer
    profundity to the third extravegenzer
    if knowledge is the antidote to fear
    then best we learn the Braves, towards them we should veer.

  24. When given a gift, take it and say thank you. That might be a big chance missed we will regret later.

    I hate autocorrect.

  25. I hate Tyler’s pitch-calling. Every pitch, to the first three batters, this inning, was a fastball.

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