Braves 9, Padres 1

San Diego Padres vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – August 27, 2009 – ESPN

Sure, now you win. The Braves put up five runs in the second and single runs in the third, fourth, sixth, and seventh, and had Javier Vazquez on the mound, who rarely needs that kind of support. This is how this whole series was supposed to go.

The Braves batted around in the second, getting seven hits and a walk. The big hit was actually by Vazquez to score the first two runs; with the bases loaded, he singled to right, and the right fielder botched the play, allowing everyone to move up an extra ninety feet. From then on, he was on cruise control. Vazquez went seven, striking out six and walking none, allowing five hits. Of course, it was the Padres, and any pitcher should be able to handle them granted a six-run lead.

The Braves had seventeen hits, and everybody had at least one, with Diaz (leading off) and Escobar had three each, Chipper (breaking out of a deep, deep slump), LaRoche, and Infante two each. LaRoche hit a solo homer in the sixth, which was actually the Braves’ only extra-base hit.

Medlen pitched the eighth unscathed (he had to make a lucky catch on a line drive). With two out in the ninth, Carlyle (back on the roster for Acosta) allowed a homer to break up the shutout, then walked the next man. So the Acosta role on the staff stays filled.

69 thoughts on “Braves 9, Padres 1”

  1. Everybody else (except the Giants which we don’t know now) lost today, so that’s good. Need to start sweeping people. Just winning a series is not enough…not to mention losing one to the damn Padres!

  2. Oh, we have to thank Charlie today. He pitched well against the Phillies and Happ got a loss out of it, nice.

  3. Guys – I heard something in the post game I haven’t heard much at all, credit given to TP for helping a couple batters.

    Diaz gave him props and Gant mentioned that TP helped Chipper settle down.

    Thought I should mention it since I have been critical that not much evidence existed that TP was helping.

  4. On the other hand…

    Ron Gant: “Tommy Hanson, a guy you never really heard much about in the minor leagues has come up and really helped.”

  5. #6 – there is no doubt about it. They could put on elevator music and it would be more bearable than Chip.

  6. 6,
    I don’t think he’s stupid. Just bad at delivering. And misinformed on multiple accounts. And way better than Chip, I agree.

    4,
    I can’t believe he said that.

  7. Chip Caray is the worst. He has to be the most clear-cut example of nepotism I’ve ever seen personally.

  8. Quotes That Aren’t True, brought to you by Ozzie Guillen:

    “I know the integrity of this game better than anybody,” Guillen said. “I’m very professional.

    Ozzie Guillen could learn something about professionalism from Courtney Love or Ray Lewis. Ozzie’s loathsome. The only thing he knows better than anybody is shooting his mouth off.

  9. Yes, our Braves picked up a game on everybody tonight as the Giants are about to lose too. It just stinks that we lost this series to the lowly Padres.

    As for trading Charlie Morton, we are gonna regret it eventually. Now don’t get me wrong, Nate McLouth is a fine young outfielder who will be with the Braves for several more seasons, but Morton has the potential to be every bit as good as Adam Wainwright.

    Simply put, Frank Wren fu**** up in the long run. He could have easily signed Juan Rivera or Bobby Abreau and installed Morton in our rotation at the beginning of the season. Instead, our GM spent precious dollars on Kenshin Kawakami. The end result would have resulted in a playoff berth in my opinion. Instead, we are left watching the score board while hoping the teams ahead of us lose.

  10. Can’t beat fun at the ol’ ballpark.

    A little wet, nobody there, but my pal scored old Lexus Level seats along the 3rd base side in the dry, which was pretty clutch on a muggy night.

    Let’s see if we can maintain the same focus in Philly.

  11. @13 – WHAT?!?! I’m going on a leap of faith here that you are just joking. Please tell me you are joking. Please.

  12. Not joking Josh. Remember, I used the word POTENTIAL. The following article is outdated but still relevant. The scouting report is up to date.

    http://braves.scout.com/2/724306.html

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/baseball/mlb/players/Charlie_Morton/

    Simply put, Charlie Morton has electric stuff on the mound. He’s also a total head case. From the shoulders down he is every bit as good as Adam Wainwright, it’s between the ears that Charlie Morton inspires doubt. He just held the best offense (the Philles) in the NL to two runs over six innings.

    Morton won’t stay where he is at right now competitively. He will get better or worse. The talent is there, the brains? We shall see.

  13. @16 Charlie Morton will never be anything close to Adam Wainwright, and I would put bet on it if Vegas has such a bet. If Charlie Morton ever has a career like Millwood, I would be very shocked.

    If you still don’t understand why we signed KK by now, then let’s just not be bothered.

    @11 Spot on!!!

  14. Somehow we didn’t lose any ground during this series. Could have been so much better though.

  15. KC, most fans don’t have a firm grasp of the fundamental differences between professional baseball played in Japan and here in the United States. Kawakami’s a solid pitcher but my money’s on Morton when comparing the two and Charlie’s making a whole hell of a lot less money.

    Maybe you can explain to me why Kenshin Kawakami is about to spend the last month of the season in the bullpen?

    And the question is loaded. :)

    p.s. I’m a big Tim Hudson fan as he’s from my home town.

  16. @20 My answer to your question is that Morton is not even as good as KK.

    Furthermore, signing KK is more than just signing the player. It is a breakthrough for the organization as KK’s experience with the Braves will serve as a marketing point for the Braves in their future pursuit of Japanese players. Before KK, the organization had no creditability in its ability in handling Japanese players, and that’s why the Braves were never in the hunt of signing them. Getting KK to perform well in Atlanta will be critical and a milestone for the organization which you may not see any immediate benefits except KK’s on-field performance, but the future impact can be profound if the Braves are serious in tapping into the Japanese talent market. Based on what I know, KK is well respected in Japanese baseball community.

    If KK does well with the Braves during his three-year stay, we will finally have a chance to beat NY, BOS, LA, and SEA to get Japanese talents as we will finally have a well respected Japanese baseball player to promote our team in Japan.

    Of course, if you don’t care about the Japanese market, then I can see why you can’t see the benefit of signing KK beyond the stats.

  17. I do not think we will rue the day Charlie Morton was traded, we have pitching, thanks to Wrens’ moves and some good development, so we used an excess unproven player to acquire cheap proven one.
    Sounds smart to me.

  18. Thank for the non answer. It’s much appreciated (sarcasm intended). I’m in agreement about Kawakami sticking around through the end of his contract. That said, trading Kawakami is not an option without offending the entire Japanese continent and slamming the door on their entire market.

    I just disagreed over the signing of Kawakami in the first place because I will always believe the same money could have been better spent elsewhere. Hey, I screamed for Nelson Cruz, Juan Rivera or Bobby Abreau and I was right. Morton could have held down the fifth slot in the rotation, and we would have been much better off as any of these three would be leading the team in HR’s or RBI right now. Abreau has 84 RBI. Cruz and Rivera have 27 and 22 HR’s respectively.

    But why is Kawakami not pitching the last month? Because Wren and Cox are idiots. I’m in Huddy’s corner but he simply isn’t ready to go out there every five days barely one year removed from TJ surgery.

    If it ain’t broke, don’t try to fix it. Our rotation is fine.

    As for The argument over Morton or Kawakami, I’ll agree to disagree.

  19. kawakami’s career era in japan at their highest level is 3.17. japan’s highest level is better, or at least equivalent, to our AAA. that’s over 10 years of proven work. he is at a 4.08 era this year in his first season as an mlb player.

    http://thebaseballcube.com/players/K/Kenshin-Kawakami.shtml

    charlie mortons career minor league era is 4.45…and lets not even get into his mlb era (granted its a sample size). comparing charlie morton to kenshin is a ridiculous debate.
    and japan is not a continent. kenshin has been effective.

    while i do agree that the braves should have spent the money on an outfielder, i like the end result of our team. if the braves would have gotten a nelson cruz, abreu, or rivera, mclouth or church would probably not be on the team and diaz’s playing time would have been dramatically cut. for this year, and beyond, i like the makeup of the team the way it is now. it’s balanced, and it’s been showing (25-15 since the francoeur trade).

  20. Coach, your hind site is less than 20/20.

    1. Morton failed his first test in the majors. He was slotted for AAA right from the get go. He was NOT in the plans for the bigs at start of the season.
    2. We hadn’t signed Lowe and Hanson was still just potential so our rotation was still very shallow at that point. At this point it was never KK OR an outfielder it was build the rotation.
    3. If Morton is going to be as good as Wainwright he had better hurry up. At 25 which is how old Morton is now, Wainwright was an established major league pitcher. Morton is sporting a 5.21 ERA and some other sub standard peripherals right now.
    4. Nate McLouth for Morton and others was a great trade. We really needed someone to play Center Field after the Schafer debacle. Rivera and Cruz are corners. Giving up the 3rd or 4th best pitcher in your system for Nate was a stroke of genius.
    5. Yeah NOW you can say that picking up Cruz and Rivera would have helped the club but Cruz only played 31 games in 2008 and Rivera sucked really really bad for 103 games over TWO seasons previous to this year. Had you suggested that we trade anything for them back in March you’d have been laughed off Braves Journal.
    6. I don’t disagree with you that the Braves should have taken a look at Abreu. But I believe that he makes twice what Anderson makes and at the time of the signing 2.6 mil was all we had left.

  21. Coach, you must have been pulling your hair out when all we did last night was hit a bunch of singles to score 5 runs. If we had only played small ball in that inning.

  22. But why is Kawakami not pitching the last month? Because Wren and Cox are idiots. I’m in Huddy’s corner but he simply isn’t ready to go out there every five days barely one year removed from TJ surgery.

    I may have missed something but the only announcement I saw was that Hudson would start Monday. I didn’t see anything about KK not pitching the last month or any statement that Hudson would pitch every 5th day. The former–KK not pitching the last month–is especially unlikely.

  23. This organization will never regret the day they traded Charlie Morton. And that’s all I have to say about that.

  24. Smitty,
    I can think of one reason not to go with a 6 man rotation. It would lessen the chances of Hanson winning Rookie of the Year since his starts would be reduced. Of course this would have to assume that Hanson has a chance at ROY – I’m afraid it’s not likely.

    Actually, I think KK, Jurrjens and Hanson would benefit from a 6 man rotation. I’m not sure about Lowe and Vazquez.

  25. #4 – did he really say that? Hahaha. One night I was watching Braves Live after the game, and Gant declared that Melvin Mora was one of the best hitters in all of baseball.

  26. Lowe and the Braves would benefit from a 5 man rotation that he’s not in…

    Actually, I am not as down on him as all that, but if you had to pick a guy to be odd man out, he’d be it right now.

    Jumpin’ catfish, it is POURING rain in the ATL this am.

  27. Look, you can argue about this or that move by Wren, whether he should have signed KK or gone after a bat. But every GM makes moves that can be questioned. It’s fair game to complain about a particular move but I don’t think it’s fair to act as if one move or non-move negates everything Wren did or that any particular move or non-move was obvious. There are no simple answers and, as Johnny noted, it was not clear at the time that the Braves pitching would be in the shape it’s now in. And I think we have to look at much at what Wren DID NOT do as what he did–specifically he did not trade Yunel Escobar or Tommy Hanson for Peavey. In the long run, that might be the most significant thing Wren does.

    You can certainly argue that Wren should have gone after Adam Dunn or someone else. Dunn has been terrific in Washington (BTW, Zimmerman and Dunn together have 61 home runs; I think that’s more than the Braves lineup together).

  28. The only move that Wren screwed the pooch on, in my opinion, was signing Glavine. We might have over paid for Lowe, but it has worked out (at least until a few weeks ago) KK has gotten better, McClouth and LaRoche have been really good pick ups. Plus he dumped Frenchy on the Mets

  29. Boog and Joe were talking last night that Huddy was going to the rotation because Kenshin was still experiencing shoulder discomfort.

  30. Yeah, last night we had what we called back home ‘a frog strangler’ it was raining so hard.

    Wren’s been good this year. But he has also been damn lucky. I’ll take that combination in a GM every day and twice on Sunday.

  31. Kawakami is a rookie to American baseball and is not as good as our other rookie, Hanson. It makes all the sense in the world that Kawakami would be bumped when a quality veteran starter like Hudson is ready to return from an injury. I doubt Kawakami has pitched his last start of the season anyway. The Braves will probably come up with some kind of 5 1/2 man rotation that gives Kawakami and Hanson alternating starts off and allows Hudson to start regularly.

  32. Harden was apparently claimed by the Twins. I can’t believe no one in the NL did.

  33. Charlie Morton is still the same level of quality as Jo-Jo Reyes. That is to say if he were still with us, he would be pitching in AAA right now and would not have affected the big league club in any way this year. If Reyes were traded to Pittsburgh, he would be in the big leagues and probably would’ve thrown a good game at some point this year, causing select people to bitch about how we game up on him too early. Charlie Morton is a No. 4 starter tops, and I really don’t think there is any way he would be pitching better than Kawakami right now.

    Also, you have to give up things to get things. Nate McLouth is far better to have in the long run than Charlie Morton. If that’s the case, you make the trade. That’s how it works. This reminds me of people complaining about the Hudson trade because they liked Charles Thomas. In trades, sometimes you’re gonna have to give up largely useless players who have a 5-10 percent chance of ever becoming worthwhile.

  34. #40 – Nick, your comment makes too much sense, please stop. HA, trading blocked prospects for young proven starters…what a joke

  35. @40-41

    Yeah, God forbid we get an all star center fielder for a #4 starter on the worst team in baseball

  36. I will admit I’m a homer about it but Ron Gant >> Brian Jordan >>>> Chip Caray as announcers. And as a play-by-play guy I like Ron Gant better than Lemke and certainly waaaay better than Caray. Chip is horrible in all three positions: pre-game, play-by-play, and post-game. Gant does a decent job in pre- and post-game and really does a good job (IMHO) in the play-by-play. I really think Chip needs to be “promoted” to a national network like Fox so he can be all excited about every little play any team makes without sounding like he is rooting against the home team.

  37. Wow…

    “@4 You know, as stupid as Gant is, I honestly think he is more bearable than Chip.”

    I can’t believe someone would be so harsh on Ronnie. Geez.

  38. I like Gant o.k. He seems to have some understanding of advanced stats and actually to be concerned to learn more. Sometimes he falls into a “Joe Morganism” about “moving the runner over” or whatever, but when he was playing, I am sure he was hearing that stuff all of the time.

    He does have a good voice and a good pace for play by play.

    Not great, but endurable and getting better.

  39. I hope George Bush buys it.

    Back to the Gant discussion. Seriously, what makes you think he’s stupid? He sounds very intelligent and well-spoken to me. Just misinformed. But not stupid by any means. And very bad at doing play-by-play. And uses the phrase: “that’s one he’d like to have back” way too much.

  40. Im sorry but as bad as Chip Caray is, he is not worse than Brian Jordan. They may be equal, but Jordan is as bad as they come. yes, Gant is superior to both of them

  41. I would rather listen to Ernest Borgnine getting a bikini wax than listen to Chip Caray broadcast a baseball game.

  42. I’d never call Gant stupid. A choker in the playoffs for Atlanta maybe, or a punk for the motorcyle accident, but never stupid.

  43. “Things you would rather do than listen to Chip Caray call a baseball game” sounds like something that could make an amusing list.

  44. Well you all know that the bats would be in mint condition. Very little impact on the barrell or sweet spot.

  45. #51
    Maybe Fred Coupon really got taken.

    It could actually be a bummer for us if the Wilpons have to sell the Mets to some competent ownership.

  46. I don’t know if it would be bad. An ownership less into spending money would be good for us.

  47. @63,

    Actually an ownership that spends up its money advantage stupidly is the best we can hope for with the Mets unless luxury tax / salary cap gets stronger in the next CBA (which is UNLIKELY).

    @54

    I tried to imagine that and kept thinking “pulling with bugie cords tied to a car you dropped off the cliff”.

    And actually, except to the extent that it is perverse for wanting to hear another human’s pain, the bizarreness of it would probably make listening to it much more pleasurable than listening to Chip.

  48. If the Braves sweep the Phillies, I will allow myself to believe the team can make the playoffs.

    Two out of three isn’t good enough anymore.

  49. We’d be leading the Wild Card race right now if Bobby had played Diaz over Francouer (or Schaefer – sp? – for that matter) from the beginning.

    Also, Gant and I have sons the same age and have crossed paths on youth baseball diamonds. Truly a nice guy and class act. Not a great broadcaster, but hey …

    I don’t get the Chip hate. He’s not Skip, but no one – in this market, anyway – ever will be.

    Listen to Chip when he’s announcing a game between two teams wherein you don’t have a dog in the fight and he’s not bad.

  50. The culture of this Mets franchise is fragile.

    They’re thin-skinned & impulsive. They’ve spent wisely in some places, stupidly in others. In some places (Beltran, for example) overspending worked out, but their minor league talent isn’t promising.

    New ownership, with all the advantages that NYC affords them, would probably be an improvement.

    I’d like to keep Fred Coupon around for awhile.

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