Phillies 6, Chipper 2, Braves 0

ESPN – Phillies vs. Braves – Box Score – June 07, 2008

I am really starting to hate this team. As has happened so often in the last two and a half years, the Braves pulled off the old “come back to tie and then stop scoring runs and let the other guys win” routine. I haven’t assigned this a Loss-Type Index number yet, but you know the drill.

Joseph Reyes was pretty strong, but allowed a pair of solo homers, one in the fifth and one in the sixth. The offense was getting one-hit to that point, but KJ led off the bottom of the sixth with a single, and Chipper hit a 3-2 pitch over the centerfield wall to tie it up. Teixeira followed with a blast that almost made it out. McCann walked, and Francoeur actually got a hit, but with two out and the bases loaded Bobby let Reyes hit for himself.

Reyes got through the seventh with help from a double play, but was up around 100 pitches and probably should have been relieved. At the same time, the bullpen has looked shakier in recent days. At any event, Reyes got the leadoff man in the eighth, walked the next guy, then allowed a triple to the Dark Lord Utley that essentially ended the game. Ring allowed the Grybo to make it 4-2, and Bennett gave up a two-run homer in the ninth. But let’s face it, they weren’t coming back again. You could tell it was over because Phil Stockman came in to get the last two batters.

Francoeur had two of the Braves’ five hits, but he sucks. As does the whole outfield. Chipper was 1-3 with a walk and is at .420. He deserves better than this team.

53 thoughts on “Phillies 6, Chipper 2, Braves 0”

  1. Well, this team’s fate could be sealed by the 20th. If we drop the last game, and play the 12 game road trip like we’ve played on the road the whole season, it’ll be time to turn out the lights and start prepping for ’09.

  2. this game was over when Bobby let Reyes hit for himself. You have to give your team the best chance of succeeding and that wasnt it. You have pinch hitters for a reason, you have to use them in those situations

  3. Again, the Phillies are just a better team. They’ve got us beat in so many areas.

  4. starting pitching isnt one of them. Our offense against their pitching should be enough to beat them. We just suck and these guys cant execute when they get the opportunities.

  5. I was joking about shooting someone in the game thread (you guys knew that, right?) but there’s something to it. Not actually shooting someone, but some demotions would be in order. I’m looking at you, Acosta. Wren needs to, basically, tell the team: “Bobby is nice to you. I am not nice. You do not want to get on my bad side.”

  6. “I am really starting to hate this team.”

    How funny Mac, I have this same feeling too. Not because I really hate this team, but because I love this team so much that I hate seeing how the team has been playing recently.

  7. Brad, I honestly don’t see how Phillies are a better team. Their players have just been performed up to their normal standard and their rotation has been over-achieving.

  8. Bobby is falling back into his old habit of keeping his starters in for too long…he forgot he doesn’t have the young Maddux, Glavine, and Smoltz anymore…even back than, Bobby always left them in for way too long…

  9. The MLB site has the one of the funniest headlines I’ve seen. It urges people to vote for Manny Acosta as Rookie of the Month. If Acosta makes Rookie of the Month, Major League baseball is in serious trouble.

  10. Well, Acosta was 3-1 with a save and a 1.80 ERA in May. He’s made up for it since. I say not Richmond, either, but Mississippi. I don’t know else can be demoted among the several players who deserve it.

  11. Wow, sorry I missed this one….

    It’s funny. The Braves have gone from under-achieving their Pythagorean record (ie, sucking on a macro level) to underachieving in how they use their base runners (sucking on a micro scale). With all the base runners the Braves had tonight and last night (7 walks again tonight?! How do you walk 7 guys on two nights in a row and win both games?!), there’s no real excuse for the poor run totals they put up.

    I mean, if you look down the lineup, Escobar was the only player to have a really bad day. Everyone else had a good or at least okay day. This continues to be very frustrating….

  12. They’re clearly the better team. They have an actual leadoff hitter. They have a closer. Their outfield puts ours to shame. Bullpen…best in the game, statistically. Clutch-hitting. Power. They steal bases.

    Us? No leadoff hitter. No closer. Average bullpen that’s about dead. No outfield. No clutch hitting. We have Chipper and McCann, Hudson most of the time, and that’s it.

    It’s really not even that close. Not to say we can’t somehow close the gap, but player for player, I’m taking their 25 over ours right now. And last year, when they won the East. And the rest of this year, when they’ll win it again.

  13. i am so glad i went out and got drunk instead in the heat-wave, 95 in NJ in june is rough. Watched Super-bad with my bros instead, good call.
    Braves are a .500 team, so be it.

  14. I have to agree that the Phillies rotation has been over-achieving, but they’re almost equal to us without Smoltz (as stated) . The Phillies’ seem to be putting a lot of runs on the board in high leverage situations. It’s surprising to look at their lineup and see Howard at .206, and 3B, catcher, and RF not hitting much. They have an OPS of .795 compared to our .780, but the SLg% is is .455 to .427 – they’ve outscored us by 43 runs, but our pitchers have allowed 17 less runs.

    Bottom line is that the Phillies seem to have more heart than we do and have gotten a few more breaks. The only way we catch them is for Teix and Frenchy to catch fire and to get a top-tier starter. I wish I had confidence in this happening, but this team seems destined to mediocrity.

  15. Brad, we have closers too, but they are just all hurt. We should have a better rotation, but Smoltz is now gone. We should have a better hitting lineup, but Tex and Frenchy fail to perform to expectation. They have Rollins, Utley, Howard, and Burrell, and we have Chipper, Tex, McCann and KJ/Yunel/Frenchy. Yes, they have a better bullpen, but I honestly think we have a better team…if we were healthy…and if Tex gets hot…and Frenchy doesn’t suck…oh well…it doesn’t matter now with Smoltzie out…

  16. Bobby is falling back into his old habit of keeping his starters in for too long…

    What’s the difference? The bullpen can’t get anybody out either.

    Maybe the talent levels are about even but the Phillies are a much better constructed team. If nothing changes roster-wise I would expect them to finish 8-10 games in front of us.

    We cannot seriously expect to win consistently with that outfield. There are just not going to be enough runs scored.

  17. Well, I said that potentially we could be better, IF all our questions miraculously were answered. But they don’t have any questions today, they’re 12 games over .500 and running away with the division.

    kc, the fact that we have “closers” to get healthy should tell you something. Having guys that we think might make good closers one day who’ve never proven that they actually ARE doesn’t mean we have anything, really. Esp when they’re all hurt.

  18. Robert, what you think is exactly what Bobby is thinking. But what’s the point of leaving your starter in when he is clearing tiring? Just because he had pitched a fine game up to that point?

  19. Well, Brad, needless to say, this season has been very discouraging no matter how we slice it. I just hope they have a hot second half installed in them…even though I haven’t seen one for so long…

  20. Yeah, I hate the Phillies – I lived in Philly for five years and a true hatred was born within me – but I gotta admit that they are a better team. Plus, you know, they catch pop ups and gun down runners at the plate and hit when men are on second and third base. It’s kind of amazing, almost like they’re professionals or something.

    But yes, the runners stranded or left on base is becoming the story of the season. This Braves team gets on base; many of our guys hit for average and hit for power and have plate discipline (Francoeur excluded). They just can’t score night in and night out. Watching this team has actually shaken my faith in some of the explanatory methods of statistical analysis, which is saying something.

  21. Not to say I told you so, but when I said this team stinks a month ago and everyone said, no this team is injured, they stunk then and they stink now. Injured, healthy, they stink no matter which. It’s a horrible roster. Top heavy with no depth, either in pitching or hitting.

    And stop Braves Journal fans thinking the likes of Ruben Gotay, Brayan Pena(people are sad he’s gone, he can’t hit a lick)Gregor Blanco, Greg Norton are good players.

    Francouer is what he is. He’ll bat around .265 20-80 every year, if for no other reason than the Braves brass are so far up his butt that he’s going to get 600 ABs no matter what he does.

    As I suggested, but was ROUNDLY flamed, this roster needs to be blown up, ala the Marlins and rebuilt from the ground up and the likes of Tex need to be traded for young TRUE talent.

    I’m willing to suck for another year if it will mean an improving, hungry, team that shows progress.

    This dog just ain’t going to hunt anymore and its over.

    I’ll say when all is said and done we’ll be around 75-87.

  22. Don’t know about blowing everything up and wasting Chipper’s last few years, but something has to change. We have seven basically wasted roster spots (Norton, Blanco, Infante, Prado, Anderson, Corky, Gotay). These guys would be in AAA for half the teams in MLB, and they play major roles with us. Seven! We’re playing with an 18-man roster.

  23. Brad,

    Not busting your balls, but your first sentence struck me as something that I have noticed about Braves fans in my 25+ years of watching the team. I’ve noticed that Braves fans seem to root for individual players that are “fan favorites” more than they really root for the team. It seems that our fanbase is really more like that than other teams fanbases.

    To be honest, in the interest of full disclosure, I’m not the biggest Chipper fan, having said that, I could care less that we would be ‘wasting’ his last few years.

    See, I want the BRAVES to do well, and not have him hit .450 and set a ML record and the team SUCK around him and it all be meaningless. As good as he has been this year, it has had little overall impact.

    We have to get ML level talent at every position even the backups. Not stars as backups, but at least someone who BELONGs in the major leagues. We have a BUNCH of AAAA players, mixed in with a couple superstars in McCann and Chipper. Tex is not a superstar, and neither is Hudson.

    The bullpen has no staying power, there is no Scot Shields type setup dominator.

    Basically, what is happening is just what I said would happen. Liberty Media(the porn peddlers) aren’t going to pay a penny to better this roster with expensive talent. Our only hope is to get younger and hungrier and build that way.

  24. we should really trade Lillibridge and something for Nady or Ibanez. This team desperately needs someone who can drive in runs after BMac. KJ needs to get back in the 7 hole also. This lineup strategy is def. not working. Get Blanco in the leadoff, Yunel 2nd, and KJ 7th. That’s our best chance. We cant keep giving these teams 4 straight easy outs after McCann. They also better learn how to start playing smart baseball also

  25. That’s silly, Chief. You don’t have to blow up the team to get major league caliber reserves. You just have to make smart decisions in the offseason. The Braves have the good players to be a good team; it’s the lack of ordinary players that is killing them. You can get ordinary players without destroying the team.

    I will repeat what I’ve said before; there is no reason that you have to destroy the team to rebuild. If the Braves fall out of contention, trading Teixeira would make a lot of sense. But there isn’t much on the major league roster beyond him that it would make much sense to trade. Other than Chipper and Hudson (who can’t and won’t be traded respectively) the valuable players on the Braves are all in the early years of their careers.

    Intentionally becoming a 100-loss team is stupid. This isn’t football. A baseball team is a structure and so is a baseball organization, and it’s a lot easier to destroy than rebuild. Again, look at the Royals, a great organization for twenty years that has now been a failure for almost as long. Look at the Pirates, who barely even exist.

  26. Moreover, if there’s a real systemic problem with this team it’s the lack of an ace starter. And do you really think that the people who haven’t developed a quality major league starter since Kevin Millwood are suddenly going to do better if they get better draft picks?

  27. Mac, I’ll agree it’s a systematic problem, but I will credit the Braves with the majority of the development of Adam Wainwright.

  28. I will also point out that it’s not like the Braves are the only ones with trouble developing pitchers. Just off the top of my head, the Yankees have developed virtually nobody since Andy Pettitte and Rivera, and the Mets have developed nobody since Generation K, both of which happened before Millwood. As I have posted on here before, it is my opinion that you have to be absolutely willing to roll a young pitcher out there every 5 days and live with the results, no matter what they are. It’s awfully hard to contend AND develop young pitchers at the major league level at the same time. I’m not saying people like Kyle Davies and Chuck James and now JoJo are going to be all-stars or anything, but it’s awfully hard to keep getting yo-yo’d back and forth to Richmond, and looking over your shoulder putting pressure on yourself knowing your team really needs you to win every five days and if you don’t, you’re going to be gone. If somebody did a study with every young “stud” pitcher out there, I’d be willing to bet that 95 % of them were on crappy teams that they were allowed to pitch every fifth day and take their lumps.

  29. They drafted Kazmir, but he went to a crappy team and was allowed to take his lumps with the Rays, which may never have happened with the Mets. I’ll give them a little bit of credit for Maine, but he wasn’t “developed” by them in the truest sense of the word I don’t think. He had some decent ERAs in the minors with Baltimore and had one year in AAA, before being brought up.

  30. I don’t give credit for the Mets for Kazmir, he could have very well turned to be Dan Meyer, once he reached the Rays, they got him at age 20 and let him take his lumps at the big league level, just as Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz are were allowed to do.

  31. In other news…

    The Mets are now one game under .500 and are 6.5 games behind the first-place Phillies.
    The Mets finish of their four-game set against the Padres tomorrow at 4 pm, with Pedro Martinez, who is making his third start of the season, taking on Wilfredo Ledezma.

    Phillies 6, Chipper 2, Braves 0

  32. “Now Billy………..Billy don’t you lose my number….’cause you’re not anywhere…where I can’t find you…”

  33. Let’s just take a look for arguments sake, take a look at the top 15 in ERA last year, and I’ll list the team wins for the first three years (10 start min).
    I know this is a small sample size:

    1) Peavy SDG (66, 64, 87)
    2) Webb ARZ (84, 51, 77)
    3) Penny LAD (Fla, 79, 76, 79)
    4) Smoltz (54, 63, 65)
    5) C Young SDP (Tex 89, 79, 88)
    6) Oswalt HOU (93, 84, 87)
    7) Hudson (Oak 87, 91, 102)
    8) Hamels PHI (85, 89)
    9) Perez NYM (SD/Pit 66, 64/75, 72)
    10) Cain SF (76, 71)
    11) Wainwright (83;relief, 78)
    12) Harang (Tex/Oak/Cin 103, 69, 76)
    13) Snell PIT (67; relief, 67, 68)
    14) Lilly (LAD, Mon, NYY, Oak, Tor (95, 103, 96)
    15) Gorzelanny (PIT (67, 68)

    Out of the 15, only Oswalt, Hudson, and Lilly (?), with most likely Hamels after this year were above .500 in their first three years of development.

  34. It’s about time to throw in the towel and look forward. Injuries are becoming the defining characteristic of the 2008 Braves.

    What can we get for Tex?

  35. What can we get for Frenchy?

    A single-A pitcher who’s had Tommy John surgery, a duffel bag full of maple bats, and a shiny new $5 bill?

  36. “Not to say I told you so, but when I said this team stinks a month ago and everyone said, no this team is injured, they stunk then and they stink now. Injured, healthy, they stink no matter which. It’s a horrible roster. Top heavy with no depth, either in pitching or hitting.”

    same thing….longer production. yes, blow up the team, trade everyone, rebuild….? and once again, 75-87? I’ll take that bet.

    throwing in the towel with less than half the season played, still above .500, and in the wild card era……..stupid.

    chief, it BLOWS MY MIND that the only time you post is when things are going poorly, and you say the same thing. if you’ve been watching the braves for 25+ years, you should know that there are 162 games in a season and there were many times during the streak where we were in the exact same spot and somehow managed to pull it out, with, what looked like, an undermanned roster.

    chief, i bet you’re a person who says “i told you so” a lot.

  37. Blaming injuries is lame. Every team has them.

    The Braves had their chance to really distance themselves from the Mets and make up real ground on the Phillies and instead they dropped a game-winning popup that will probably end up starting a slump where the bleeding will not end till the season is dead.

    And “rebuilding” is stupid. It’s easier to make the moves needed to make a .500 team a contender than it is to sell everything and win. And you think Braves’ attendance isn’t great now? Imagine what that 90+-loss team in 2009 after “rebuilding” would bring.

  38. Well, the good news is Resop made it through waivers and will be pitching in Richmond.

    I cant believe no one claimed him, 5.60 era’s dont grow a trees you know,

  39. “Reliever Chris Resop was designated for assignment by Atlanta, cleared waivers and was sent to Richmond. Resop was 0-1 with a 5.89 ERA. Reliever Scott Williamson (2-1, 6.61 ERA) was released to make room for Resop.”

  40. Did anybody really think the team would compete without Smoltz in the rotation? This is a year to get young players some valuable experience. Get Morton up here already. Stockman should stay in the pen for good. Release the corpse of Abe Miller and call up Sammons. Trade Norton and Infante to other pretenders and let Lillibridge and Brandon Jones be the backups. Trade Tex in July for some bluechip prospects and give Thorman one last shot at first. Maybe lightning will strike twice and this team will repeat the baby Braves success from 3 years ago. If not, at least it would be better prepared for next year.

  41. I hate the fact that the team has been trying to contend for the past three years instead of trying to rebuild around McCann, Escobar, and *gulp* Francoeur

    let’s get Schafer, Heyward, and Lillibridge up here and start rebuilding

  42. The team just has never come together. They are a lot like the Phillies were for several years, some talent but just never put it together. But I don’t think they are as talented as people want to believe.

    I agree with Mac and Dan; you don’t need to do a Marlins to get better and there is no guarantee that getting young players will make you better. Lots of teams have tried what the Marlins do and suck for years. As for trading Tex, you aren’t going to get much for a guy with half a year left and Boras for an agent. Arguably, the Yankees might bite, but what would they give?

    While I don’t think he is the reason for the struggles, I do think it’s time for Bobby to leave and bring in a new voice. The players may like Bobby but they clearly aren’t responding to him and, no matter how good someone is, at some point it’s time to go. Bill Parcells lost his magic too.

    I understand what Ryan is saying and it’s an admirable attitude but, frankly, we have seen this for the last 397 games and it’s a little difficult for me to believe things are going to turn around all of a sudden, especially with Smoltz out.

  43. Seems to me that they’re pressing too much to make things happen at home in order to compensate for their awful play on the road. Escobar doesn’t seem to be handling his leadoff role well at all. Today’s game is a big one. Need a win before setting off on a tough road trip.

  44. We should not throw in the towel yet guys. We still have a good team. We need a couple new pieces (e.g. Nady and another starter – maybe Morton), but we could still get control of this division. We haven’t played the Phils much, so if we just take them in the season series, we should be good. Also, if we were to dump Frenchy, we’d gain about 4 wins on the season. But I think this team can still win.

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