Braves 4, Rockies 3

Atlanta Braves vs. Colorado Rockies – Box Score – July 11, 2009 – ESPN

That was closer than it should have been.

The Braves again took an early lead, getting two runs in the first, Conrad driving in McCann on an infield single and Jurrjens coming through with a single to score Conrad (after Diory had singled him to second). Jurrjens was outstanding at the plate and in the field, getting two hits while giving up only five, and taking a shutout to the seventh. The Braves made it 3-0 in the fifth when McCann hit a sac fly to score Jurrjens, and 4-0 with another McCann sac fly to score McLouth. It’s certainly better to get sac flies than popups or strikeouts or Francoeur Specials (the classic one-out, bases-loaded GIDP) but if you get a hit there the Braves break it open. They had several chances but could never quite do it.

Jurrjens gave up a homer leading off the seventh, and then gave up a double to the next man. Bobby came in with Moylan, because, well, you have to use someone. He got the first man on a strikeout, but then allowed a single to score him, then another single, then a passed ball scored the runner from third to make it 4-3, but Moylan somehow got two groundouts to end the inning. O’Flaherty (in the setup role with Gonzalez back in Atlanta to see the doctors — you know it’s a real problem when he goes to Birmingham) gave up a sad little single, then got the next two, but ran into one of those python strike zones and issued a walk. Acosta came in, and gave up a grounder up the middle, but Conrad was there and picked it up for the forceout. Soriano went 0-2 on the first man in the ninth, only to give up another pathetic single, then said “to hell with it” and struck out the side on ten pitches. He’s pretty good.

Ryan Church was 0-4 but hit the ball hard, and just missed a Coors Field grand slam, and very successfully managed his main job of not being Jeff Francoeur. The Rockies walked Chipper twice, one intentionally, which frankly is a clear sign of disrespect and McCann made them pay enough, I guess.

55 thoughts on “Braves 4, Rockies 3”

  1. “Jurrjens coming through with a single to score Conrad”

    who ran through a Snitker stop sign.

    Good gosh, Brian Jordan gets worse at his job everyday

  2. Ryan Church can really do no wrong in his situation. He could end this season with a VORP of 0, and that would still be better than Jeffy (who got two RBI today, good for him).

  3. From the previous thread, if you think the Mariners have a sorry line-up check out the Padres. Any team would be dumb to give Gonzalez anything to hit…ever.

  4. If Soriano continues this he will likely be too expensive next season – unless he just wants to stay, which could happen.

    He has been incredible so far.

  5. Way to go Cox … wear Gonzalez out why dont you … how many times was he in games with big leads that he had no business in … and I didnt think he was ever gonna get Moylan out of there .. you can tell within the second batter Moylan faces whether he has it or not . Francour 2 rbi’s on a bloop down the right field line and Church hits a couple of ropes and has nothing to show for it . thats baseball !!

  6. @3

    Yeah, the Padres definitely competes for the sorriest line-up, I just got a little surprised by that collection of ineptitude in Seattle since I don’t see them play much at all – games are too late.

  7. According to the Atlanata Braves website, Gonzo has tendinitis in his left elbow, but will be available to pitch immediately after the break. In other words he needed some rest.

  8. So if I have this right, Cox is an idiot for giving Moylan more than a hitter (because it’s so obvious when he doesn’t have his good stuff) but Cox is also an idiot for going to one of his non-Moylan options too often (thus driving Mike Gonzalez, who heretofore has never had an injury problem in his life so it’s clearly all Bobby’s fault.)

    Raise your hand if you thought “Oh, we’re good here” when Manny Acosta came in. If you didn’t, I’d be interested to know who Cox should have been going to all these times when he was so idiotically over-using Gonzalez. Are we chomping at the bit for Jeff Bennett’s return?

  9. He did what he had to do, as I said. It’s not a very attractive situation out there right now, especially since there was zero chance he’d use Valdez unless he was basically out of pitchers.

  10. I hope we see “Church’s Chickens” out in the RF stands at some point. That would be cool and just typing it makes me hungry.

  11. Yea he smiles after he does his job.

    Now we have to treat Gonzo like he is special, b/c he may “hurt” his elbow again.

  12. Tomorrow is going to be interesting. Medlen isn’t stretched out at all, hasn’t been that great, and is going on three days (barely) rest. Soriano and O’Flaherty should both be unavailable as well. (though with Bobby, that doesn’t mean much)

    Wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Kawakami get an inning or two tomorrow depending on the situation.

    The only redeeming factor is that Hammel has been absolutely horrendous at Coors.

    As I said, should be interesting. Hopefully not in a bad way.

  13. do you offer Gonzo and Soriano both 3 yr $15 mil offers right now. Is that enough, never know what this offseason will look like economy wise. Think they’d accept?

  14. BBTN saying Matt Cain is likely to miss the all-star game. Jurrjens mentioned 1st as one of the possible replacements.

  15. Last time Gonzo had tendinitis he had surgery and missed a full year.
    Great way to blow a guy out Bobby.

    Soriano should ask for 12 mill a year for 5 years right now, and the Braves better say OK.

  16. 18 — I’m a little surprised that Kawakami isn’t starting tomorrow. He’d also be going on 3 days rest and only threw 86 pitches in his last start.

  17. 22,
    He’s used to 5 days rest. 4 is like 3 for him (I guess, I’m just talking out of my rear).

    In other news, Braves’ record in the post-Francoeur era: 2-0

  18. I’m aware of that. At least he’s in the normal rotation and stretched out, and he would get 5 days rest before his next start after the ASB.

    13 — I think Acosta should have been used more often to this point. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think he’s that good, but I do think he’s at least replacement level. Replacement level relievers should be able to protect a 3 run lead for 1 inning.

  19. Rafeal Soriano is awesome. Rafeal Soriano is not a $12 million per year pitcher.

  20. Natty’s put up a 13-spot against Astros. Houston’s starting pitcher? Mike Hampton!

  21. 14 — So, Valdez is now in Acosta’s old spot of “guy who never pitches except for in blowouts.” I don’t get it.

  22. @19

    I’d rather do two @ 12MM. Three years for a reliever is too scary (especially with Bobby). And no reliever is worth 8 digits per.

    On a completely unrelated note (we just ordered it at work) Lesnar is a douche but a scary motherfucker.

  23. The chickens on the Sports South Facebook page are clucking:

    “Well, now that the game is over and Ryan has had a chance to get all of his batting done, let’s check his stats against Frenchy’s.. Ryan was ZERO/4 with NO RBI’s for a .000 batting average. Frenchy was 2/4 with TWO RBI’s for a .500 batting average. Way to go, Frank Wren!!”

    A Frenchy supporter trying to use stats is a sorry sight.

  24. @29 – I guess no mention about how every one of Church’s outs was hit harder than any of Frenchy’s hits, huh? Idiots.

  25. @13 and @24

    can someone please explain to me why people dont think acosta is that good? what does he have to do to prove that he’s good?

    this year, he has a sub 2 era, hitters are hitting .236 with a .308 obp (basically francoeurish).

    for his career, hitters are hitting him for a whopping .227 with a .321 obp. his career mlb era is sub 3. sam, you tell me why the braves should be uncomfortable bringing in acosta? if it’s to say that he is shaky in close games, then how the hell will he ever get comfortable. but, i guess it’s better to continue having our best relievers go down with tendinitis a year removed from tommy john surgery.

    here’s his page in case you want to prove yourselves wrong.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/split.cgi?n1=acostma01&year=2009&t=p

    so i counted it. gonzalez has pitched in 9 games thus far where the margin of victory was 4 or more.

    soriano has pitched in 9 games where the margin of victory was 4 or more.

    this is why relief pitchers’ arms die in an atlanta braves uniform. take away 6 or 7 of those appearances and spread them throughout the pen to people like medlen or acosta. we now have 4 relievers on our team with 40 or more appearances (moylan 1st in the nl, gonzalez and o’flaherty tied for 3rd).

    sam, booby is mismanaging the pen and people get hurt that way. honestly, is it normal to have so many pitchers (and ex-pitchers) to either have tommy john surgery or severe case of dead arm (yates, boyer, reitsma…)?

  26. I love the following series of three posts, all by the same mets fan in a period of roughly one and a half hours:

    ———————————————————————————————————————————————-

    Am I the only Mets fan who is happy with this trade?

    Potentially Franceur can be the starting RF we need without any sort of price attatched.
    Church was always going to platoon in RF.
    We get potentially a full time RF with a great arm and high ceiling in exchange for a decent RF who wasn’t the same since his concussion and was nothing more than decent.

    I have trouble understanding this trade from a Braves perspective, they would have been better off going for Jose Guillen in exchange for Franceur.

    Mets win this trade by a country mile.
    I think Omar is pretty good with his trades its just his free agent signings or lack of on occasion(*Cough* Adam Dunn)that bring him down.

    Posted by: OhPityMe | July 11, 2009 at 05:28 AM

    Happy might be too strong a word.
    I’m happy at getting potential in Francoer but not happy that it took trading something of value to get him.
    In hindsight my last comment was too positive…nobody won this trade.

    This post is a more sober one I think we couldve got way more for Ryan Church but I still like the acquisition of Francoer.

    Posted by: OhPityMe | July 11, 2009 at 06:56 AM

    I’ve just been researching on Fan Graphs and reality has hit me…HARD.
    Yes the Braves most certainly did win this trade…by quite a bit.
    And Ryan Church is a surprisingly good defender…I always thought of him as being around league average in RF.

    Posted by: OhPityMe | July 11, 2009 at 07:12 AM

  27. Umm, why wouldn’t Soriano be available today? He just got finished striking out the side on ten pitches, and we get three days off after today. I’d say he’s good to go.

  28. He’s pitched 4 out of the past 5 days. Today would make it 5 out 6 (with the additional detriment of it being a day game after a night).

    Three days rest or no, you cannot abuse your relievers in this manner and realistically expect them to stay healthy. I’d imagine Mike Gonzalez would agree

  29. Well you hope Soriano gets three days off. If Charlie Manuel actually decides to do the right thing and give Broxton’s spot on the all-star roster to him, Rafael could potentially be pitching Tuesday as well.

  30. I’d want to see Soriano still have all his tendons attached at the end of the year before I offer him anything.

  31. Relievers (other than Mariano Rivera) are way too up and down to offer long-term deals to. Ryan (Baltimore; Toronto) went from unhittable to cuttable in 3 seasons, with not much after his great season. Putz had maybe the greatest relief season ever, 3 years ago. Now, he is living up to his name. Brad Lidge went from unhittable last year to an awful pitcher this year. Seriously, I cannot think of but 2 or 3 relievers that can mantain high value for 2 or 3 years straight. I would rather flip Soriano for young talent than sign him long-term, and I think he has been the best reliever in baseball this year.

  32. “He’s pitched 4 out of the past 5 days. Today would make it 5 out 6 (with the additional detriment of it being a day game after a night).

    Three days rest or no, you cannot abuse your relievers in this manner and realistically expect them to stay healthy. I’d imagine Mike Gonzalez would agree.”

    I would just fly Soriano home now, to avoid even the temptation of using him. I would leave no phone number, so they couldn’t call him for the AS game. We have a shot at the division, and we need to start by burying the Mets right after the break.

  33. The Mets are certainly not the team to beat in this division, but crushing them coming out of the ASB would sure be nice.

    As for tomorrow, we’re just going to have to hope for a blow-out or an excellently pitched game from Medlen. (Personally, I’m hoping for the ladder, since I’ve got Hammel starting in my fantasy league…. I don’t think it’ll go well.) Petey can pitch tomorrow, so can Boon Logan. I’d really hope to not see Soriano, but it’s not like he’s had very tough innings either of the past two nights. Acosta probably shouldn’t go, and same with O’Flaherty.

    As for “wearing pitchers out”, well, I’m not sure what you’re supposed to do with your best relievers other than play them in high-leverage situations. I don’t think we’ve seen anything this year like when Boyer basically went up in flames because Bobby decided to use him ever day for a month.

  34. You have to be kidding me, those guys as your closers?
    You need a real closer to anchor a pitching staff, we went through that committee crap in the 90’s to often and it was horrible.
    You got a guy who can get it done, sign him, dont start over.

  35. So, 4 out of 5 games is acceptable usage, given that he was dominant yesterday. But 5 out of 6 and we start talking about pitcher abuse and arms falling off? Where does self-reporting enter into this equation? If Soriano says he’s good to go, what then?

  36. I will say that although I would like him to get the recognition, I hope Soriano doesn’t get picked, in the sense that you don’t really WANT your pitchers to be used in an exhibition, or however we categorize the All-Star game now. Yovani Gallardo has a strong case, too — maybe Manuel will choose him.

  37. RE: Gonzo

    The sore shoulder/ tendonitis is how this always starts. He will come out after the break and throw in the mid 80’s and get lit up and then go on the DL. Then he wont respond to the baby oil Porter has been rubbing on his arm. All of the sudden on August 1st he is getting on a plane and hedded to see Dr. Andrew’s in Birmingham, but ‘only to get an MRI.’ Next thing you know he is out until 2010.

  38. If Gonzo goes to see Andrews and needs work done his career is over.
    2nd TJ surgeries are very precarious.

    That would stink, losing a good player and a strong trading chip in one shot.

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