Atlanta 7 Baltimore 5

ESPN.com – MLB – Recap – Orioles at Braves

The Braves jumped out to a big lead, and held on from there. They led 7-1 after three innings but didn’t score again, and when the Orioles caught up with Davies it got close.

After allowing a run in the first (it could have been worse, but he got a double play) Davies was okay through two out in the fourth. But then the homer bug bit him, allowing a three-run job, followed by a solo shot in the fifth. Bobby stuck with him, and he retired the last five men he faced.

The Orioles sent rookie Hayden Penn, not Chen as I’d been led to believe, to pitch; he’d been doing well, but no longer. Marcus was the prime hitting hero, with a two-run homer in the first and a run-scoring single in the second. Andruw followed the homer with a solo shot, his 22nd, and officially is feared by the Orioles, who walked him intentionally to face Estrada with two out in the second. Kelly Johnson kept his streak going with an RBI double. Langerhans and Davies also had RBIs as all the starters but Furcal had hits, and he had two walks.

Boyer pitched the seventh, allowing a two-out double but retiring Tejada to end it. Brower is apparently the top setup man now. After getting two outs (one on a fly ball to the track by Sosa) he gave up a single and gave way to Reitsma. He in turn mowed the Orioles down, ending the inning on a strikeout and getting three groundouts for the save.

The Natspos won but the Phillies lost, so the Braves move into second place, and (for what it’s worth at this stage of the season) the wildcard lead. There’s a good chance that the wildcard winner will come out of the NL East; right now, nobody but the first place teams in the other divisions is above .500. Chen will pitch tomorrow against, all reports still say, Roman Colon. No word on who the roster deletion will be but I still expect Vasquez. Kolb or Bernero would be far more desirable.

18 thoughts on “Atlanta 7 Baltimore 5”

  1. Mac, you are so fast with your post-game comments. Anyway, I will post below message again…

    Hey, I am no longer nervous watching the ninth!!! We have all seen Hoffman dominating with his changeup…boy, that eighth inning strikeout changeup reminded me of Hoffman.

  2. If Gryboskolbernero (take your pick) isn’t going away, why don’t they just send Marte back to AAA tomorrow? They can bring up Tony Pena after the game and he can rot on the bench until Larry gets back. I hate to suggest that, but Marte would be better off there than just being the righty part of a platoon in the big leagues. And we could use the extra reliever right now. Pena is already on the 40-man, so it wouldn’t use up the precious open spot on the roster.

  3. creynolds, I understand exactly what you mean. I hate seeing Marte sitting on the bench as well. I guess no one has ever thought Betimet will be playing so well. With the way Betimet is playing (the guy is becoming a triple machine, and he doesn’t seem to be a fast baserunner at any TV angles for some reason…), I hate seeing him being benched as well. I don’t know, I really think they should just put Furcal on the DL and let him rest for two weeks.

  4. I’m with kc. The solution isn’t to send Marte down. The solution is to bench the .220 hitter in the leadoff slot, move Betemit to SS, and play Marte every day.

  5. I don’t think going with another reliever is a good idea, though. The bench is short as it is, and that would cripple it. Better to get rid of bullpen deadweight outright.

  6. This would all be so much easier if we could find someone to take Furcal. Then Betmit and Marte could play every day. Tona Pena could still rot on the bench. Then just dump Bernero, and if we absolutely have to let Colon start for now, so be it.

    Hudson sounded optimistic today, but still says he’s over a week away. So Colon may have to start two. The outfielders may wanna get fitted for hardhats.

  7. Mac, I bet the logic of keeping that many relievers in the bullpen is because of the lack of endurance in our pitching rotation (particularly Rameriz, Davies, Sosa, and (now) Colon. They are really five/six innings pitchers with no hope of occasional seven/eight innings performance.

    Ideally, Cox would like his relievers to pitch one inning at a time for consecutive days and getting their rest on their third or fourth day. As four of our starters can only go five to six innings, this means we have to throw four relievers into each game. Cox can use his best four relievers (should be Foster, Boyer, Brower and Reitsma now) for two or three days in a roll. By the third or fourth day, he will need a new set of relievers of cover the last three/four innings. I bet this is the reason why we have eight relievers in the bullpen, and decision on Kolb and Benarro should be made when Hampton, Hudson and Thomson (who can all go seven or eight innings) come back in the second half.

  8. Ok, I am going to address this again until someone (Mac?) responds.

    WHY is Vazquez going down but Kolbb, Bernero and now COLON-cancer all have MAJOR LEAGUE JOBS?

    I don’t understand
    I don’t understand
    I don’t understand

    (that is me beating my head against a wall over this).

    On the Marte thing, either send him down or bench Furcal. I vote for the ladder; screw alchy boy and move Betemit to SS.

  9. Furcal has a nagging shoulder pain. He is sucking a goat offensively. Do you think there might just be a psychological resistance to putting him on the DL? He hasn’t ever spent much time on the DL, as far as I can tell, and I can imagine a reluctance to go when practically everyone else has spent time on the shelf this year.

    Still. Seems dumb to leave him active if you can replace him for a few weeks with Betemit.

  10. I responded last time, Alex. I don’t know that Vasquez is going down. But only two relievers have options, and the other one is Boyer, who’s moved into a key role, at least for now.

    Now, I don’t agree with this. I don’t think that anyone would claim Bernero if he were DFAd, and it’s unlikely that anyone would claim Gryboski. Definitely nobody would claim Kolb, and if they did more power to them, but he might declare free agency, so the Braves would be stuck paying him while he might right himself for a rival.

    The Braves have surprised me before but I just don’t see it this time.

  11. James 6 innings 0 runs 11 K’s and 2 bb’s 4-0
    Francoeur 3 hits 1 double 1 homerun (11) 3 rbi’s (56)

    Time to bring James up

  12. Furcal won’t be on the DL because that will hurt his trade value. Maybe Colon is just going to be pimped for trade bait as well.

  13. Well, Alex, based on what I am hearing, I think it’s a simple fact that Cox is never impressed with Vasquez. If you boss doesn’t like you, it really doesn’t matter how good or how talented you are. See, Cox likes Colon, and Colon is given another chance to prove himself. It’s the same with Jordan. It doesn’t make sense, but I guess that’s life…

  14. Regarding Jordan, You know from the first time he was here (or “there”, since I am “here”), Jordan has HEART. This is why Bobby likes his role model, an “old school” (whatever that means) baseball player. His salary isn’t hurting anyone. I think he is worth his value.

  15. How badly must the organization think of Chuck James not to be using him in this slot, especially since Colon is clearly not a starter (even though he apparantly has some undisplayed, this year anyway, talent)?

    Truthfully, I like Colon’s stuff last year and I think it is possible that he will become a bona fide reliever (although maybe not ever a closer). But starting?

    This, like starting Davies and Sosa on three days rest, ensures great quantities of bullpen work at a time when our bullpen isn’t designed to work more than a couple of innings at a time and only for a couple of games at a time. What are the odds that Colon pitches more than four innings?

    Boggles the mind…

  16. Regarding the issue of options.

    I don’t understand the thinking.

    who CARES if someone gets Kolbb even if we are paying him?

    Let’s all think logically…if the Phillies sign Kolbb and we hit a few game winning home runs off of him, is he not worth MORE to the Braves that way? Hello? Does anyone really think Kolbb will go to the Mets or Phillies and suddenly shut us down?

    this makes no sense.

    I would pay Kolbb and Bernero out of my own pocket if it meant they would just be somewhere else. I went through this with Lockhart until the Padres inexplicably took him off our hands…

  17. I’m not as big on this as other people, but if Leo Mazzone can’t right Kolb, what are the odds he’s gonna go to New York or Philadelphia and put up good numbers?

    Shoot, pay an American League team to take him off our hands. That way, he’d have to really right himself for him to be used in a meaningful situation against the Braves. That would also mean we would be in the World Series, so… let’s do it!

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