Mets 4, Braves 3

ESPN – Braves vs. Mets – Box Score – April 26, 2008

So, I think that’s 0-8 in one-run games. This is extremely frustrating, and I may have to take Steps.

The Braves went up 1-0 in the first — without the benefit of giving away an out on a bunt! KJ, hitting third (Chipper was out with back spasms) walked, and Teixeira doubled him home. They made it 2-0 in the third when Hudson scored on a wild pitch with the bases loaded, but couldn’t get a hit to break it open. Normal.

It may be that Hudson tired himself out running the bases, because he gave up four runs on five hits in the bottom of the third, and was hit for in the next inning. I don’t think he’s really hurt, but you have to be concerned.

The bullpen did great in keeping the team in the game, Carlyle, Ring, Bennett, and especially Campillo with another great two-inning stint, striking out four. Prado singled home Francoeur with two out in the sixth to cut the lead to 4-3, but that was all the Braves could muster, despite getting runners on the next two innings. Kotsay played, but badly; Brent Lillibridge, up to play shortstop, looked about as much like a major leaguer as he does Samuel L. Jackson, striking out three times and making a misplay on defense.

All this and Matt Ryan too. Joy. Get better Chipper. Get better Yunel.

40 thoughts on “Mets 4, Braves 3”

  1. so unfortunately one starts wondering about less tangible items, e.g. toughness/character/poise

    It’s talent/health/curse. And it’s not just this team. The Braves have lost two World Series almost entirely on one run losses. Oh, and those 18 innings against Houston still make me wake up at night.

  2. The way this team can slaughter people on many nights makes me think it’s not talent that is issue. And curses are crutches, as I tell my friends and family who are Cubs fans. Health, though … that I’ll give you, Tom. That’s been a problem.

  3. the good news for me of the day consists of my not being a falcons fan………..but hey, if they can schedule Va. Tech, Matt Ryan will do fine.

  4. If Lillibridge is gonna look like a high schooler out there we might as well just put Prado or Gotay at short and take the defensive hit. Lillibridge had as much chance of getting a hit today as I did.

    Hudson’s velocity wasn’t good, he was getting fly balls (a bad sign), there is something going on there. He might not be hurt but he’s hurtish.

  5. Hall & Oates?

    Not as much fun today, plus it was really cold & windy.

    Not sure how to really evaluate that game, considering we played so many non-regulars. The bullpen was good, but we couldn’t get the big hit.

    The Mets were ripe for the taking. So much negativity in that place. Half the stadium expected to lose. They couldn’t wait to boo Delgado. Reyes has become a pop-up machine and people are really noticing that, too. When Willie came out to argue a call, it was like he was playing to the crowd to show that “he cared.”

    I hope Smoltz ups the Misery Index tomorrow & we have a couple more healthy guys.

  6. Hall and Oates waged more of a War on Eyes than a War on Ears. The cover of H2O has been known to incite riots.

  7. It’s not a matter of character or toughness or anything else. It’s an offense that struggles to get good at-bats in close games. But the Braves have won some close games in the last week, albeit not one-run games because they broke the games open. The one-run stat is just fluky, although 0-8 is pretty terrible. I wonder what the record is for most one-run losses to begin a season. That said, I don’t think it was realistic to expect a sweep even with having (on paper) a pitching advantage. Hudson is and has been a real enigma. At times, he looks like a great pitcher but at other times he is awful. A real ace needs to be able to do damage control, as Don Sutton says, even when he doesn’t have his best stuff. Smoltz can do that, Hudson seens unable to and I think that’s what really separates him from the true top echelon of pitchers. It’s disturbing when a supposed ace can’t get out of the third inning.

    Mets fan story: on Mets Blog, one of the commenters was suggesting that the Mets weren’t really that good and that maybe 2006 was an “abomination.” Obviously, he meant “aberration” but what was worse is that no one corrected him.

  8. robert, lillibridge the new scapegoat? i say give him more than one game to pass judgment. ya’ know, there are 162 in

  9. If it means anything, it’s the Braves’ problem producing sequential offense, to score multiple runs without homers. I’ve mentioned that the Braves struggle when they don’t hit homers. I could probably check this, but I won’t; I believe that they score most of their runs either through homers or via one-run strategies (bunts, moving runners along, etc.) Innings like they had Thursday, when they scored five runs on six hits, only one of them for extra bases and that a double, don’t happen often.

    Some of it is probably all the stupid bunting — Bobby really didn’t used to bunt with his good hitters so much. Some of it may just be luck, because the Braves do hit for a high average. I can’t find team double play data offhand, but we do seem to hit into a lot. And I know sabermetric doctrine says that batting order doesn’t matter much, but I do wonder if the lineup construction might be a problem.

  10. Not sure how I would change the lineup just yet.

    I do think if Gregor Blanco keeps going like he has been I would consider him leading off with KJ moved to the 7 spot. That would imply a rotation of outfielders, sitting either Kotsay or Diaz depending on the pitcher.

  11. One possibility is to move Francoeur to the three spot. Bear with me, here. Traditionally, that’s where the best hitter is supposed to go, but when you think about it, that’s a spot where you’re (usually in the first inning, and often other times) either going to come up with runners on base (and have an RBI opportunity) or with two out and nobody on (in which case your best chance of getting a run is to get an XBH). This is a theory, I don’t know if it’s valid.

    Another is to bat your best hitter leadoff (the Bobby Bragan theory) or your highest OBP there (the Wade Boggs theory) even if he’s slow. That’s Chipper.

    A third is one of Bill James’ ideas which I think that the Red Sox might be trying (the last two years, their #5 hitters have usually been Youkilis or Drew) hitting someone who’s more of a line drive hitter in the 5 spot instead of the traditional power hitter. For this team, that would mean Escobar.

    This is too freaky for Bobby, of course, but a really weird lineup that might work:

    Chipper
    KJ
    Francoeur
    Teixeira
    Escobar
    McCann
    Blanco
    Kotsay/Diaz

    I have Chipper in my ABPA computer league. The lineup optimizer keeps wanting to bat him leadoff. I don’t have the guts to do it myself, so I don’t think you could expect Bobby to.

  12. robert, lillibridge the new scapegoat? i say give him more than one game to pass judgment. ya’ know, there are 162 in

    Yup, 162 and they all count. Especially the ones against the Mets. If he can’t hit the ground running better than that, forget it.

  13. Personally, I’m willing to cut Lillibridge all the slack in the world given his situation. I mean, he was called up out of nowhere and immediately thrust into a high-pressure game, replacing a guy whose been the catalyst on the team thus far. Give him a day at least.

    Also, he strikes out a lot, so that shouldn’t really be a surprise. It’s the biggest knock on him.

    That said, he’s supposed to be slick with the glove, so I was surprised to hear that he had some trouble out there. What was the deal? I don’t remember it being mentioned on the radio broadcast (though surely I could have just missed it).

  14. #25 – HA HA HA

    there was no problem with Hudson’s velocity today, he was around 91-92 on most fastballs, unless the gun was wrong. His pitches were just up in the zone and had no movement. I dont think there is an injury problem here. He’s kind of like Oswalt, his pitches better have movement and good location or he’ll struggle

  15. how do we release this guy, send Stockman back to Richmond, and keep Resop on our roster??

    per mlb rumors….Schreiber, for his part, is just 25 years old and posted a 2.43 ERA in 33 and a third innings at AAA Richmond last year and a 2.22 ERA in 44 and two-thirds innings in Double A. The Braves drafted Schreiber, then a starter, out of Duke in the 16th round back in 2004. Though he’s struggled with his control so far this year, someone will want him.

  16. Re: Hudson

    I think his velocity was fine (about 90-91 MPH). His location was off today, which doesn’t really worry me.

    The real issue is that he really isn’t an ace. He was hit-lucky last year and it made his ERA look better than he really is. He’s a solid #2 starter who doesn’t get enough Ks to be an ace. This bad outing is just a product of reality.

  17. Meh. Schrieber’s no great shakes, and it’s not like many teams have spots on the 40-man just lying around at this point in the year.

    Regarding the whole lineup thing, in a Strat-O-Matic world, I’d probably go with:

    KJ
    Chipper
    Escobar
    McCann
    Tex
    Frenchy
    Diaz/Kotsay
    Pitcher
    Kotsay/Blanco

    ‘Course, with the lineup the Braves have, you can basically line the top 6 and bottom 3 up any way you want and it’ll produce a ton of runs.

  18. But, I would certainly keep Schreiber over Resop.

    So, I suppose Lilli was not on the 40-man and so someone had to be DFA’ed to make room?

  19. Lillibridge struck out well over 1oo times last year, so I was not surprised by his debut.

    Otherwise, the Matt Ryan pick had the singular advantage of making me forget the Braves game. Its just one more reason why I have come to believe that the Falcons will not get much better until they get a new owner….

    It would be nice if we could take 2 out of 3 at Shea…

  20. my panthers go stewart (OH MY he’s a BEAST) and traded away 3 picks (one of them a 1st rounder next year…sheeesh people want to win now) and jesus’ jock strap for #19 where we picked…

    Otah…

    when Phillips was still on the Board as well as a few other ones (Brohm for one)…i know Tackle is a need, but jesus, Otah’s not nearly that good due to the fact that he HATES football.

    haha…

    Sam Baker and Matt Ryan. HAHAHAHA. come on, Baker is soft and can’t run block and the jury’s gonna be out on Ryan until the day he retires. sorry falcon fans, you’ve got 4-5 years before you’re competitive again…don’t worry, my panthers look like they’re going down this path soon as well.

    anyway…braves losing a 1 run game is like amy whinehouse slapping some guy on a london street corner: it was bound to happen and it makes for good press.

  21. On Hudson’s velocity. I followed the game on Gameday, and his speed was down when he was getting pounded. I saw maybe one or two pitches at 91 at the start of the inning, but most of his fastballs were in the 80s—sometimes the low-80s. The first start after the “low-velocity start” he was hitting 93-94, consistently. I am worried about an injury.

  22. war on ears?? it sounds like Mac will make the site invisable unless we listen to Van Halen while we browse through it.

  23. JC, I was watching Hudson’s start prior to this one on TV, and I don’t remember him touching 93 or 94 on the TV gun. Basically 90-91 the whole time, if memory serves. But my memory could be misleading me.

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