Arizona 6, Atlanta 5 (10 innings)

ESPN.com – MLB – Box Score – Braves at Diamondbacks

Very high on the list of “annoying ways to lose a baseball game” is when you’re trailing 5-0 in the eighth and 5-1 in the ninth, tie up the game on a three-run homer by a struggling rookie, only to lose it when one of your putative top relievers allows a walkoff homer in the tenth. Not that I’d know anything about that.

For seven innings, the Braves played “strand the baserunner”, leaving runners all over the place while the D-Backs build their lead — two in the fourth, two in the sixth, one in the seventh. Hudson allowed eight hits, but more troubling was poor control, for him anyway, with three walks and a relatively poor 54 strikes in 90 pitches. Three of the hits were doubles. He’s going to allow some hits, but he can’t walk guys and he has to hold them mostly to singles. He was charged with four runs, three earned. Boyer also had control problems and allowed a run in the seventh. McBride made his debut, getting a hit and a strikeout, in the eighth, and Kolb allowed a single in the ninth.

Finally, in the eighth inning, the Braves got a run, but that was frustrating as well. Johnson doubled, Giles singled, Andruw singled Johnson home, and then the next three guys went down like bowling pins.

In the ninth, Langerhans tripled, Julio walked, Furcal reached on an infield single to score a run, and Johnson hit a three-run homer. But then it happened again; after Giles struck out, Andruw singled, Chipper walked, and LaRoche and Estrada made outs. LaRoche actually hit what should have been a double play ball but they botched it. The two were a combined 0-10 and left a combined 14 men on base.

Then Jim Brower came in and allowed a leadoff homer in the tenth. Six different Braves had two hits — Furcal, Johnson, Giles, both Jones, and Langerhans. How do you have six guys get two hits apiece and lose? See the above weak 0-10 from the 6 and 7 hitters.

The Natspos lost big to the Astros, and the Braves remain in a first-place tie. Should have been more. The Phillies won and are now just four back. I expect that the rest of the season will be Braves versus Phillies; I still can’t take the Mets (who lost) seriously and the Marlins (who also lost) are in disarray… Hampton versus Brad Halsey tomorrow. The game is actually on TBS!

36 thoughts on “Arizona 6, Atlanta 5 (10 innings)”

  1. I want the Braves to trade for a first baseman.
    You can tell me LaRoche has talent. You can show me that a replacement wouldn’t be significantly better at any reasonable price. We can talk about a possible shift of Chipper or whomever.

    And I’ll tell you that LaRoche drives a stake into rally like Van Helsing in a “B” movie.

    I am sick of “good enough to compete.” I want to start bludgeoning half-assed teams like the Snakes. Get me a cold-blooded killer for first.

    I’ll take a Tylenol now.

  2. Great Job Gryboski:

    Kevin Gryboski gave up two runs in his debut for the Texas Rangers in 2/3 of an inning. At least we dont have to watch this anymore.

  3. From the AJC:

    Mazzone blasts Yankees rumor
    Phoenix — Braves pitching coach Leo Mazzone was adamant Friday in refuting a report out of New York that said the Yankees have approached him about leaving Atlanta to join their coaching staff.

    “There’s absolutely nothing to it,” Mazzone said of the Bergen [N.J.] Record report that claimed the pitching coach told “a friend” that he would take the same post with the Yankees “in a minute” for the right offer.

    “I haven’t talked to anyone,” Mazzone said. “I can’t talk to anyone; I’m under contract. I don’t want to talk to anyone. I’ve been under contract with the Atlanta Braves for 14 years, and I hope to be under contract with them for another 14 years. I love it here. I’m perfectly content here.

    “I want to be here as long as Bobby [Cox, manager] and John [Schuerholz, general manager] are here.”

    Link

  4. Kelly Johnson has struck out 38 times in the last 30 days. I wonder how many of those were looking. Wilson Betemit followed with 18. Hopefully last night Johnson broke out of his slump with his double and homerun, but only time will tell.

  5. What a frustrating loss. We are just not coming up with come from behind victories this year. We had what, 26 last year, and this year like 2?

  6. “I want to be here as long as Bobby [Cox, manager] and John [Schuerholz, general manager] are here.”

    Exactly what I was thinkking. As long as Schuerholz and Bobby are around, I don’t think Mazzone is going anywhere.

  7. I’m with Ben. If we could get a lights out power hitter at first, we’d be in much better shape.

  8. Off-topic: I need an opinion. The O’s just traded Ponson to the Padres for Phil Nevin. What do you all think of this deal? Everyone on here is smart and posts good opinions, so I was interested to see what you think. I know this isn’t an Orioles forum, so I’m sorry to be annoying. Don’t respond if you don’t want to.

  9. I don’t understand why the Padres did this. Ponson, in a word, sucks. Nevin doesn’t deserve the contract he has, but he’s a better value than Ponson is. Maybe some money changed hands? I like this deal from the Orioles’ perspective unless they have to pay a lot of extra money.

  10. What lights-out power hitter is available at first base? Albert Pujols certainly isn’t, nor are David Ortiz, Derrek Lee, and Mark Teixeira. After that, you start to get into the realm of players who have put up similar numbers to LaRoche (adjusted for playing time) with, in many cases, much larger contracts. It’s not going to happen!

  11. I agree with the above statements about LaRoche.

    I also thinmk Estrada’s perpetual mediocrity is obnoxious. He & LaRoche killed two rallies last night when the D-Back were clearly on their heels and just waiting for the Braves to win the game.

    They just made me ANGRY.

    The Braves absolutely ened a 1st baseman. I would rather have Francour & Langerhans split right and KJ in left and replace LaRoche. I also wish they would just go ahead and make Brian McCann the full fledged STARTER at this point.

    I watched the game on CBS.Sportsline last night and I was practically screaming at the computer for McCann to pinch hit for Estrada…it just killed me to see those two mediocre players ruin 2 gimme rallies that we had.

    We should never ever be losing games to the Backs like that with Hudson against Vargas. Taht’s just inexcusable.

  12. I like the Orioles deal. I’m surprised that the Padres made it, but I guess they need any pitcher with Eaton’s injury problems, and they didn’t really need Nevin anymore.

    I think that Chipper would serve as a “lights-out power hitter”, don’t you? And you replace him at third with Marte, who should be a 40-HR guy in the next few years. I’m not someone who thinks that LaRoche is useless, but he’s simply not the kind of guy you make a commitment to or build around. He’s a support player who doesn’t have the on-base skills or power to be an elite first baseman.

  13. Jenny,
    Ponson pitched horrible for The Giants when he was traded there. What makes the Padres think it will be any different. They traded Nevin and then picked up Joe Randa to play 3rd. Nevin, I guess is a cheaper alternative than Lowell. But although Lowell is having a down year his upside I believe is far greater than Nevin.Maybe there trying to make the Burnett trade without Lowell or maybe their shipping Nevin to Florida??? Baltimore has to get Burnett so Boston or the Crankees don’t….
    As far as the Bravos, tough Loss last night.I had a feeling that when they didn’t take the lead in the 9th trouble was ahead. I still like Brower and Mcbride showed a nasty slider. KJ came through big time in the 9th which was great to see but Estrada’s not getting Andruw in from 2nd killed us. Can’t wait to see the Francoeur against Halsey tonight. Is it time yet to have him play against righties a little?? Maybe spelling KJ one game and Langerhans another..Just a thought.

  14. I agree with Clark. And we don’t need a 1st baseman. Franco and Roachy are a good 2 headed monster.

  15. The braves do not need a firstbaseman and there is NO ONE available. So get over it.

  16. The Phillies have Howard and Thome on the market. I know they probably won’t trade within the division buts its a possibility. They need pitching, we could give them Sosa, and I’m sure they would rather have Estrada at catcher than Lieberthal, which would give McCann the full time starters job. Also, Adam Dunn is on the market and he’s played a little first base before.

  17. Reality: LaRoche isn’t going anywhere for now – unless Chipper moves to 1b. And that will only happen if 1) Chipper wants to, and 2) they think Marte’s ready (as they don’t seem to trust Betemit). I suspect Marte’s permanent arrival isn’t until next season, so don’t expect LaRoche to go. But IF the Barves were to deal him, here’s one more possibility (if the money could somehow be worked out) – I imagine the Royals would be interested in trading Sweeney for him. But the money probably won’t work – rumor has the Angels getting Sweeney.

  18. It’s the money and the time with Sweeney. He’s got two more years at something 12.5 million (if traded) left on his deal. Certainly for the length of time, he is AL only. I’m not sure the Royals aren’t stupid enough to try to keep building around him. Where they get the idea that they can do such a thing is beyond me, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they had it.

    Easily the worst franchise in baseball. It’s not even really close. Tampa’s handling of their current ML team may be the worst, but at least they have talent. A ton of it. KC doesn’t appear to have much of any beyond who’s already up and that 3rd baseman they just drafted.

  19. We don’t need to do any trades.
    I can see us making a playoff push with the team we have now. Just don’t resign mondesi and where good to go.

  20. We make playoff pushes every single year. I’m tired of having enough to make a playoff push but losing in the Divisional Series, its happened the past three years. The rookies will get us there, but experience will get us through the playoffs.

  21. We can’t acquire anyone who makes a ton of money to play 1B, and certainly not anyone who is signed for a long time. That gets rid of players like Thome, Sweeney, and Nevin(thank god, because if we acquire any of them it would kill the franchise). So get over them, it isn’t happening. Of players who are realistically available, the only ones that fit the cheap and not signed long term are Howard and Dunn.
    Dunn is still cheap this season(4.5 ish) so we could make it even out this season by including Kolb or something. The problem gets to be next season. We are forced to trade Dunn, because he will make at least 8 and up to 11 million in arbitration. The money for that is just not in the budget. So we would have to deal him again next offseason to someone like the Diamonddbacks, Angels, Yankees, or Red Sox. If we could get Brandon Wood, or Stephen Drew or something I’d love that, so that isn’t what is holding me from acquiring him. What is keeping the deal from happening is that Chipper would be forced to play 1B in 2006(or Marte I guess) and I am not sure the Braves want to do that. As for players to acquire Dunn, some combination of Ho-Ram/Chuck James/Wilson Betemit/Jake Stevens/Johnny Estrada/Kyle Davies and then of course LaRoche. I don’t really know, but basically it would be like 3 from that group, plus LaRoche.

    Acquiring Ryan Howard would be stupid because A)He is in the LaRoche class of players in that he is not superstar level B) He is the same player as Adam LaRoche except in a different flavor and C)it just keeps the logjam at 1B/3B/DH that we already have. Also, I don’t think that the Phillies are going to trade him to the team they think they have a chance at catching sometime soon.

    So our options to acquire a 1B are Adam Dunn, who we would then have to trun around and trade this offseason. We could probably get Lyle Overbay, but he is just Adam LaRoche at 29. I think I’ll take the LaRoche/Franco combo, that currently has a line of:
    .270/.330/.475

  22. Mike, we have had moreplayoff experience than any other team every year(except maybe the Yankees I guess) since 1996. How well has that experience served us in getting to the World Series. Experience means nothing, talent is what is important.
    Creynolds, the Royals actually have a lot of good CI/DH types. Billy Butler has moved to left and will mash MLB pitching. Justin Huber is someone we should be very glad the Mets got rid of. The Royals also have a couple of decent arms. You are right that they are run poorly, rushing players to the majors for no toher reason than to ge the arby clock going. However, I would say that the Diamondbacks are just as bad or worse, because they acquire players at 10 million a year to do the same job the Minor Leaguers they already have can do, and sometimes worse.

  23. Are you INSANE?

    You are comparing LaRoche to RYAN FREAKING HOWARD?

    The guy will porbably make about 8 all star teams long after LaRoche is out of Baseball!!!

    Howard is one of the best young hitters in Baseball…yes, Mac, call me names, dispute me, I don’t care…but I would absolutely trade Marte for Howard because we have Chipper asnd Betemit and we are STUCK with a piece of shit at 1B in LaRoche.

    Me…I would rather have good hitters all the way around.

  24. Howard is already 25, so he’s not really a “young” hitter. This season, he’s hitting .244/.327/.489 with terrible defense while playing his home games in a bandbox. LaRoche is less than 2 weeks older than howard, and is hitting .268/.323/.478 in a neutral park.

    Anyway, as Howard is right-handed, he would presumably get all of the PAs that Atlanta first-basemen get. So far, Adam and Julio have racked up a .267/.326/.477 line while actually playing first. Adjust that to CBP, add in a huge (5-10 runs over a season, probably) difference in defensive ability, and Atlanta’s 1B platoon is easily 10-15 runs a year more valuable than Howard is.

    As for trading Marte for Howard, that is a terrible idea. Let’s put their numbers into context. When Ryan Howard was 21 years old, he hit .272/.384/.456 in low-A ball. He plays a poor defensive 1b. Andy Marte is 21 years old now. He’s hitting .280/.381/.518 in AAA while playing an adequate defensive 3b. Roughly speaking, Marte’s minor league numbers this season translate to a major league performance equal to what Howard is done. Except that he’s 4 years younger and plays a more important position, and plays it well.

    If we wanted a better hitter at first, all we have to do is move Chipper over there. He has looked pretty terrible at third his first few games back, so that might not be a bad idea.

  25. Basically, Alex, a Chipper at third/Howard at first combination would be very poor defensively and would likely have a short shelf life — either Chipper wouldn’t be able to play third any more in a couple of years, or Howard wouldn’t be able to play first anymore. In either event, he’d be traded to an AL team before 2009. Marte’s a ten or fifteen year player at third base and one who by that time should be a superior hitter to Howard.

    Tell you what. Go to a Phillies site and float that deal, see what their fans say.

  26. Alex, you freak out whenever anyone so much as disagrees with you. You come flying back telling everyone to go to hell, mentioning that you know Mac personally and threatening never to come back. Yet when I make an easily defensable statement(if you want you could, I dunno, look at some numbers?) you call me insane? I am not the one taking a ridiculous position here, you are.

    Grow up. And that is from an 18 year old.

  27. I guess everyone is against my idea of trading for a big bat. How about this though? Trade Estrada and Sosa for Billy Wagner. Reitsma has done well this season, but I keep thinking about his collapse in game 5 of the NLDS last year. I would feel much better with someone like Wagner to close out games.

  28. It isn’t so much that it was a bad idea but that it was unnescassary and not really possible. As for Wagner, we can’t resign him so it would be a rent-a-player move, which I am not totally against. If I could do Estrada and Sosa for him, I probably would. However Lieberthal is pretty much equal to Estrada and is getting paid 7.5 million next season(assuming he gets another 60 or so PA) so I don’t see why they would want Estrada.

  29. Also we can’t afford to take on salary and Wagner has quite a bit of money left on his deal this season, so they’d have to help us out there. I am not sure that Wagner would be nescessary to be honest, but I am not against acquiring him assuming the price is low.

  30. I know Wagner is kind of a longshot, but I think that would be the best thing. I just don’t think Reitsma will be able to handle closing in a big playoff game, and Wagner is the best closer available. Other options are Baez and Wickman, who would come cheaper, but I would rather have Wagner.

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