Pirates 3, Ocelots 2

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – June 10, 2009 – ESPN

“Ocelots” because they just oscillate around .500, never getting much above or below. Back to .500 we go! Charlie Morton did indeed start, but went only one inning before leaving with a “tight hamstring”. Nobody ever has a loose hamstring. So the Pirates brought in Karstens, the guy who was supposed to start, and the guy who the Braves beat in the 15-inning game, only to see him shut them out for the next four innings. Meanwhile, Jair Jurrjens pitched great, but gave up a couple of runs in the third, so he gets hung with the loss. It’s not really fair, is it?

The Braves finally got to Karstens in the sixth, with Escobar doubling and McCann almost hitting a tying homer, but instead bouncing off the top of the wall for a double. He was, of course, stranded. And then Yunel screwed up royally, ignoring a runner from second on a forceout, allowing him to round third and score to make it 3-1. It mattered a lot because with two out in the ninth, ACHE hit a solo homer (the only baserunner the last five spots in the order provided) and the Braves lost by one run.

Norton started at first again and was 0-4 again. I can only guess that he’s holding down the spot until Kotchman is back and will then be released. His average is now .098 with his game-ending flyout tonight… Francoeur, who sucks, was back in right field, and was, of course, 0-3.

56 thoughts on “Pirates 3, Ocelots 2”

  1. why carry 5 OF’s when only three play. Norton needs to be moved for Barbaro before Kotchman returns. Barbaro in the DH spot for interleague games might be ideal

  2. These are the kinds of ’09 games that make you feel powerless.

    JJ vs Morton/Karstens looks good, but a lousy lineup (with few great options) & a bonehead play and we’re back to scratch.

  3. I think JJ should go into the doghouse. Why can’t he pitch a shutout for every outing? His sub-3 ERA is way too high. What’s wrong with him?

  4. Francouer is so close to turning it around! In related news, these shrooms are amazing!

  5. Some good Frenchy news–since Norton made the last out, Jeffy was only 0-3 not 0-4. He also saw more pitches,9, than the starting pitcher, 7, for a change. An awesome display of plate discipline!

  6. I work as a paramedic, and if I only saved 25 out of every 100 patients (i.e. .250ba) my ass would be fired and I would be working as a third shift wall washer at an all night adult movie theater…..Jeffy is pathetic…he makes me long for Brad Kommisnk and Jimmy Kremers..at least they knew they sucked.

  7. I guess if Prado is hurt Norton had to start. If Diaz starts in place of Francoeur (hopefully) or Anderson we win the game – plain and simple.

  8. FlaBravesFan, does a success rate of 33 out of every 100 make a big difference in your industry?

  9. Diaz is our most useful non-Irish outfielder. Yet he continues to ride the pine because Bobby Cox, well, I’ve never heard a reason why Bobby Cox thinks it’s a good idea to keep him on the bench.

  10. As long as Frenchy is getting his at-bats, he would still think there is a chance he can turn it around…because he is “The Natural”.

  11. Somebody give Jeffy some ‘shrooms. Can’t hurt.

    In professional baseball news, Mets trying to cough one up in Flushing. Utley hits his 2nd HR tonight, this one in the 11th.

  12. does a success rate of 33 out of every 100 make a big difference in your industry?

    he gets to be the second shift wall washer

  13. The Mets blew a lead and lost to the Philthies in 11. I don’t know whether or not I should be happy, but I do love to see the Mets lose.

  14. Listening to WFAN will be fun tonight & tomorrow.

    Not only did the Mets blow a 4-1 lead & lose to the division leader, but the Yankees are now 0-7 vs. Boston. Expect much gnashing of teeth.

  15. On any given day, we carry 3-5 batters that hit like pitchers.

    Choose from:

    Jeffy
    the Glide
    cold streak KJ
    Norton
    Jordan Schafer (while he was here, to be fair, he at least walked occasionally)
    the actual pitcher

    Tough to score runs like that.

  16. Bored at work and going through some of the FJM archives. Here is a fantastic one:

    John (Chicago, IL): Joe, who do you think, in your opinion, is going to represent the AL in the World Series this year and why? I like Boston because they have the best run differential in baseball and their pitching top to bottom has been statistically the best all year. What do you think?

    KT: Hey kids! New to our site and want to know why we think Joe Morgan should be fired? Check out this fun answer!

    Joe Morgan: Well the run differential means nothing. It is like OPS, it mean nothing in the grander scheme of things. (…)

    http://www.firejoemorgan.com/2007_09_01_archive.html

  17. Here’s another one: (I can’t resist)

    Eric (NYC): It seems like there aren’t any more “great” teams out there this year, just a lot of mediocrity. In your opinion, what was the last truly great team?

    KT: Definitely a Joe-Baiter, I think. “There are no more great teams” is one of Joe’s go-to nonsenses. Along with “Gary Sheffield is great,” “They need to be consistent.” “I am on the Hall of Fame Committee so I don’t like to talk about who should and should not get into the Hall of Fame,” and “Dave Concepcion should definitely be in the Hall of Fame.”

    Joe Morgan: It did not just start this year, it has been this way for a bit. A lot of good teams out there, but not many great teams. An great team has no weaknesses. All teams these days have weakensses, most of the time it is starting pitching. The last great teams I think were the Yankee teams that won all those titles. I think Boston, when they won the title were clsoe to beaing great. But I do not see any teams out there right now who I would call complete. The Yankees look great at times, but then they hit these big loosing streaks and that is not what great teams do. So I agree with you that there are not any great teams out there.

    KT: Wonderful. A Gettysburg Address for a new generation. Bumbling, ramble-y, riddled with typos (sorry, dak), fact-less, nonsensical, exclusionary (didn’t the 2002 Oakland A’s win 103 games with some pretty good starting pitching?), halting, and bafflingly choppy. Well done, all-around.

  18. KC–More than anything else, I think it was a missed opportunity. I am afraid that it may mean the Braves have a lot less money to spend than they have had in previous years….

    If Minor, Hale and Jones work out, it will be no worse than several other drafts that the Braves have had, but it is hard to believe that they could not have done much better….

  19. If Diaz starts in place of Francoeur (hopefully) or Anderson we win the game – plain and simple.

    This is what I’m talking about when I say people are going a little too nuts over this “Diaz would save us” nonsense. Now don’t get me wrong, I would absolutely start Matt Diaz in right field at this point. Even if I were forced to keep Jeffy on the roster, he would be my right-handed RF platoon at this point likely. I’m not arguing with the general theory. The problem is that people take the general theory and drive it into the ground over a period of a couple weeks and it eventually switches from “Diaz should really be playing more and Francoeur (or Anderson) should really be playing less” to “We would be guaranteed to win if we started Matt Diaz.”

    I mean, ACHE hit a home run in this game. You mean you’re guaranteeing that Diaz would’ve produced more runs than that? That’s a bold statement. I’m really curious how you’re getting your information on that. How are sure he wouldn’t have gone 0-3 just like Francoeur?

    Matt Diaz is a fourth outfielder. On this team, he’s the second-best outfielder at the moment, but that doesn’t change the fact that he’s a fourth outfielder. He is not the second coming of Dale Murphy, for God’s sake! He’s really not that good. There is no way he could hold down a starting job for any Major League team with a semi-competent outfield. Would it be better if he were playing more? Yes. But there’s a long way from that to guaranteeing that we would win games with Matt Diaz.

  20. Nick,
    A similar thought crossed my mind, but I figured I’d let it go rather than post it—mainly because any more Francoeur-related talk makes my head hurt.

    Look, the vast majority of people on this blog knows what has to happen. It’s just a situation that’s discouraging & beyond tedious to revisit daily.

    That’s why, it seems, that a flawed player like Matt Diaz looks so attractive. It’s desperation.

  21. “Look, the vast majority of people on this blog knows what has to happen. It’s just a situation that’s discouraging & beyond tedious to revisit daily”

    Well said. When the day comes though…

    Actually, I don’t know if I’ll me mad that it took so long, or just happy that he is gone

  22. ububba hit the nail on the head. The fact that we’re clamoring for Matt Diaz is alarming in itself.

    A Rockies fan asked me the other day ‘why are you so excited to get Nate McLouth, he’s not that good’ and I said, ‘you don’t understand, he looks like Babe Ruth compared to the rest of the craptastic outfielders’

  23. @25 Stephen, as I said before, maybe it is just the reality of our team which we have to live with…unfortunately.

    @26 “mainly because any more Francoeur-related talk makes my head hurt.”

    ububba, please don’t. It’s not worth it!

  24. JJ,

    Did you ask him for Spillbourghs too? Tell him we’ll give him an SI coverboy…

  25. The funny thing is I told him I’d rather have any five of the Rockies outfielders that were on the roster last week (Hawpe, Fowler, Seth Smith, Spilborghs, Murton) than any of the Braves outfielders currently on the roster not named McLouth.

  26. Actually…

    You know what would be a fun game? To come up with a list of outfielders (that would qualify for the batting title) that we wouldn’t rather have than anyone in our OF

    Here’s a start:

    Chris Young
    Brian Giles
    Coco Crisp?
    Chase Headley?
    Willy Tavarez?
    Jose Guillen?

    Out of 71 qualifiers, there’s six…that’s really sad

  27. I will gladly take Chris Young or Giles (salaries be damned, it’s not my money). The DBacks are kind of going through a Francoeur thing with Young actually. They are starting to wonder if they’ve already gotten the best out of him. Unlike the DBacks though, the Braves (thankfully) didn’t buy out Stenchy’s arb years like the DBacks did with CY.

  28. Brian Giles is 38 and has a wOBA of .253 his OPS is .554

    Chris Young is even worse with .247 and .546

    Why would you want either?

  29. For those interested in the Braves first four picks, here is a good website:

    http://www.pgcrosschecker.com/

    It is good to see that while MLB.com undervalued our picks a bit-the list on this site put the picks in rounds 4 +5 in the top 250.

    The analysis of Minor and Hale is also pretty interesting….

  30. Thanks Stephen. The report on Minor is so Glavine like, which I hate. Hale is so raw that I wonder if he would be available in the late rounds.

  31. My guess: if he develops properly, Minor might be somewhere between Sterling Hitchcock and Glavine…

  32. KC–Now you are the pessimistic one! Chances are that Roy Clark sees Minor and somehow thinks–‘Glavine’. I don’t see that, but he ought to be a #3 starter (assuming he stays healthy and continues to develop). Hale is more of a risk, but could have more of an upside.

    At this point, my discomfort with the draft stems not so much from Minor (the top left taken) but the picks taken after Hale. Jones and Berryhill may be ok–but I think the Braves could have waited a few rounds and gotten him. Without getting to specific in this ppost, I believe that the Braves could have gotten more out of the draft.

    I am guessing that they don’t have the money to pay for players ‘over the slot’.

    I hope its because we may need to cash to acquire the extra outfield bat which we all desire….

  33. @33 They tried to. fortunately Francouer wouldn’t stoop so low as to take a McCann like long term contract.

  34. I hope the Braves sign Casey Upperman–just for the name. We could call him Uppyourselfman…

    He may actually have a decent upside….(or should I say ceiling)…

  35. Wikipedia history fun…

    “Escobar grew up in Cuba until he emigrated to the United States in 2004, washing up on the shores of Miami. Escobar loves to dance, and sing in the shower. He enjoys giving ‘it’ up to all the guys in the neighborhood.”

    “Escobar received a $10000000 signing bonus. “

  36. More Wikipedia history fun…

    * Francoeur continues to frustrate fantasy owners and is generally considered to be a giant jerk.

    Jeff is commonly known as Bob in the locker room. Call his fan hotline to show support 251-609-3489.

    Francoeur hit .443 with 100,000,000 HR and 164 RBI during his high school career at Parkview.

    Francouer’s favorite restaurant is hooters.

    Francoeur finished the season batting .300/.336/.549 in 67 games, with 83[[home runs]] and 259 [[runs batted in|RBIs]].

    After 2008, Francoeur is now widely thought of as the worst everyday corner outfielder in the National League.

    Francoeur and his wife, wild child Francoeur, were married on [[November 3]], 2007.

  37. And more Wikipedia history fun…

    . On [[May 24]], 2008, Jeff briefly silenced his critics when he hit his second career walk-off home run off Diamondbacks reliever…

  38. Just a thought, with the Nationals needing to free up some $$ to sign Strusberg, do you think they would be open to trading Adam Dunn? His contract seems pretty reasonable, and he would be a major upgrade over The Out Machine. Maybe Francouer, a couple of AA arms, would that get it done?

  39. The Braves will have to move salary to take on Dunn, unless the Nationals want to swallow about 75% of the remaining contract, which I don’t see happening. The Braves have little wiggle room in their payroll.

    Dunn is who we should have gotten this offseason: 17 HR, 44 RBI, 47 BB, 62 SO, .394 OBP, .542 SLG, .936 OPS

  40. sdp–Regarding your second post–this is what some of us were hoping for in the offseason….no comment on the first….

    Unfortunately, I don’t think the Braves have much money left–as demonstrated by the way in which they have handled this year’s draft….

  41. @26 – I’ll take the pledge. I will stop bitching about the way Jeff, the Dementor, Francouer sucks the joy and happiness out of me when he plays.

    give me a break on the Harry Potter reference, I have 3 teenage daughters.

  42. Sdp, these edits will make you happy…

    Francoeur and his wife are fighting and are getting divorced tomorrow afternoon.

    Francoeur and his wife are currently fighting and Francoeur is planning to divorce her immediately.

  43. I must disagree with the suggestion that the Braves bench or demote Jeff Francouer. It’s pretty clear that if they did so, it would disrupt the space-time continuum and cause untold chaos in the universe. It would be the same as when Desmond failed to push the button on the island on Lost. Bobby Cox knows this–he wrote his PH.D dissertation on it– and, therefore, knows that Jeff must play every day for eternity.

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