Atlanta 11 Montreal 4

ESPN.com – MLB – MLB RECAP

This is a lot more fun. The Braves batted around in the first and had an 8-0 lead after two, and cruised from there. Andruw had the big blow in the six-run first, a three-run homer. Furcal scored three times, and Chipper drove in four. Team effort all around.

Paul Byrd mostly concentrated on throwing strikes from there. He allowed ten hits and three runs in seven innings, but didn’t walk anyone and struck out five. I should point out that Byrd is really fun to watch pitch. He’s a throwback, the only guy in the majors with a full old-fashioned windup. Juan Cruz pitched two innings and allowed a homer, striking out two.

The Phillies held off the Mets and the Marlins lost, and suddenly the Braves are a half game behind the two second-place teams. Ortiz pitches tonight as the Braves try to get back over .500.

20 thoughts on “Atlanta 11 Montreal 4”

  1. Nice to see some offense. I don’t want to jinx him but Chip looks like he is starting to come around. I wonder how much longer the Adam LaRoche experiment will continue. He just doesn’t look ready to me. Lets keep it going. I’d love to above .500 going into the all star break.

  2. Why is Laroche batting ahead of Andruw? I can’t fathom that.

    Byrd was fun to watch, especially in comparison to the sometimes-excruciating nibbling on hte corners from Ortiz and Hampton.

  3. Maybe because they don’t want Andruw hitting with Estrada on base because of all the DPs? Not that LaRoche is fleet of foot, but he’s faster than Estrada right now, and everyone gets out of the box faster than Andruw.

  4. When I bat, they should replace the first base coach with a stripper holding a box of donuts. That would make me hustle to first.

  5. Are the Expos seriously going to start Scott Downs tonight? One night after they had to run through their bullpen? You will never hear a clearer cry for help.

    Downs’ two starts this season:

    6/26 @TOR 2.2 IP, 6 H, 7 R, 3 BB, 1 K
    7/1 @PHI 2.1 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 1 BB, 0 K

    Only in Montreal would you be given a chance to make another turn in the rotation.

    (Of course now I have certainly jinxed the Braves, and Downs will no doubt be brilliant tonight)

  6. Would anybody seriously object to replacing first base coaches with strippers? It’s not like a stripper can’t do the job just as well.

    The Braves haven’t looked as hopeless against hopeless pitchers the last couple of times. Even if they were, Downs would offer a challenge. He’s terrible.

  7. What, is seeing Hubbard down there at first not doing it for Andruw? And strippers would?

    First base coach just might be the most superfluous job in baseball, but at least Hubbard works with the middle infield guys on defense (IIRC).

    I certainly will not be amused if the Braves hitters roll out the red carpet for Downs. Hopefully, he won’t last 3 again.

    By the way, when I post in TypeKey, it seems to delay my posts, and it also doesn’t keep me signed in.

  8. Without the first base coach, who would hold all the extra equipment that a player must shed once he reaches first base. And who would give Barry Bonds his little injection so that he can make it all the way to second. And what would they do with the little painted box; it would look really funny if empty. Then again, strippers would be nice. Would they have to tattoo name and number on their…back?

  9. If Andruw didn’t hit into a DP, a reach-around from the 1B stripper would be his for the effort.

  10. It’s good to see some consistent offensive efforts. As bad as Chipper hit in June, he still had more RBIs and HR than Andruw. I think Chipper is doing better because the pitch selection is better with Estrada hitting behind him. Also, he might be a bit more selective at the plate.

  11. This is how crazy rumors get started. Do you think Smoltz would really go to the Phillies next year as this article suggests?

    Posted on Sun, Jul. 04, 2004

    By Jim Salisbury

    Inquirer Columnist

    Wanted: An ace

    Curt Schilling showed why he is an ace last Sunday in Boston. He fell behind the Phillies, 3-0, early but smelled blood and elevated his fastball from 92 to 97 m.p.h. once he got the lead and sensed a win. That’s the type of killer instinct the Phillies seem to lack. The solution, for next year, could be John Smoltz, a Schilling-like competitor who is expected to be the latest free agent to leave Atlanta. Smoltz has an option in his contract that guarantees him $12 million for next year if he finishes 57 games this season. But entering Friday, he had finished just 26.

    Smoltz has said that if he became a free agent, his preference would be to get a deal done with Atlanta. But, there are rumblings that the Braves will continue to scale back the payroll next year. That could put Smoltz on the market. Smoltz has said that if he changes teams, he would like to start again. The Phils, who considered signing Smoltz when he was a free agent after the 2001 season, may be wise to think about signing him this winter to be the backbone of their rotation in 2005 and 2006.

    Even though there’s plenty of season left in 2004, it’s never too early to be thinking about next year. Remember, the Phils first began discussing signing Thome in May 2002.”

    I would imagine that considering how Millwood has faired in Philly, Smoltz would ask him why he is really pitching that poorly. My guess is the coaching staff, starting with Bowa.

  12. There’s an article by Alan Schwarz in today’s New York Times that explains a method, the Pythagorean standings,that is used to forecast a team’s chances of making the pennant race. Basically, the Pythagorean standings, first proposed by Bill James, use a team’s number of runs scored and runs allowed to project a figure of expected victories, which is compared against actual victories. According to Schwarz, the Pythagorean standings “are much more accurate than real-life ones in picking which contenders (teams .500 or above) will keep it up or fade.”

    For more, see http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/04/sports/baseball/04score.html

  13. Neyer’s not free, though. They probably have them somewhere in Statistics or Standings.

  14. A win is still a win. Phillies lose, All teams move up one space (except, of course, the MLB whipping boy Expos).

  15. Yeah, I saw that when I went to check on that stuff. Also, if you go to standings and click on expanded, it shows XW, XL, and XWP – expected wins, losses, and win %, which are the Pythagorean standings.

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