Rays 5, Braves 2

Atlanta Braves vs. Tampa Bay Rays — May 19, 2012 — ESPN.

Randall Delgado is having an up-and-down rookie year, like much of the Braves’ pitching staff. Through his first four starts, he had a 6.30 ERA and 12 walks in 20 innings; then, in his next three starts, he had a 1.33 ERA and just 6 walks in 20 1/3 innings. When Randall’s control is on, the 22-year old is already a good major league pitcher. Last night, he didn’t have it.

He only gave up three hits in four innings — but he walked five men and one of those hits was a grand slam. And that’s all the Rays needed. The Braves scratched two early runs off Alex Cobb, a well-regarded prospect who was recalled from the minors just before the game, by stringing together three straight hits in the second inning. But then their bats went to sleep. They got just two hits and one walk over the last seven innings of the game.

The Rays are obviously a good team; there’s no dishonor in losing to them. But that plate approach was vintage 2011. There had better not be any cap-tipping today.

125 thoughts on “Rays 5, Braves 2”

  1. Alex: Great writeups. I hope Mac is ok. Question, though…shouldn’t you file them in “Recaps 2012” rather than “Game Threads 2012”? Thanks!

  2. AAR, thank you for these recaps and/or threads.

    From the guy who boldly predicted a 78 win season, I am very pleased with this team. However, I am wondering what we’d look like with a shortstop.

    Mac, the prayers never stop. It cannot be said enough that cancer sucks.

  3. Every bench player except Hinske is in the starting lineup:

    Bourn CF
    Prado LF
    Freeman 1B
    Uggla 2B
    Heyward RF
    Diaz DH
    Francisco 3B
    Ross C
    Wilson SS

  4. @10: It’s why I’m confident he’ll end up with a much better batting average than he currently has. Eventually the balls will start dropping and he’ll capitalize better on mistakes.

  5. He went on first movement, and got such a good jump that he thought he.must be about to get picked off, so he stopped, stutter stepped, wasted that great jump and got beat by a MILE by a pretty bad throw.

    This is because he is an experienced base stealer who should probably just be chained to first base.

  6. Francisco is all the frustrating at bats of Javy Lopez, Andruw Jones, and Alex Gonzalez rolled up in one overweight package.

  7. @32: yup that’s why I still like him, and why I didn’t stoop to comparing him to Melky.

  8. Back to Francisco in the previous inning, that was 4 straight quick outs we gave a pitcher with a high pitch count…

    We ALWAYS do that in the 5th or 6th.

  9. Now existing for third baseman Juan Francisco, third baseman Juan Rodriguez.

  10. This team has surprised me so pleasantly so far that I am trying hard to not slap my head too hard over Chip’s inanities.

  11. We have gotten screwed way too often by tags at second. There is no doubt in my mind that the ump called him out based on the first tag, which was not in time.

  12. Sam Fuld is in the Rays broadcast booth, explaining “Sabermetrics 101”. They started with OPS, then worked their way to UZR, WAR, and FIP. Nothing new for us here obviously, but it was interesting to hear WAR and FIP discussed on TV, and especially by a current player.

  13. Did anyone see Hudson take his cap off and rub the rosin bag all over his scalp? I’ve never seen such a thing!

  14. The Scout function on GameDay claimed that Hudson had “plenty left in the tank” and was “running out of gas” two pitches apart.

    And Tim, you can start throwing strikes again whenever you want.

  15. Christ, Chip Caray just guessed Kent Merker was the last Brave to strike out 200 guys.

    How can he be that wrong? It’s his job!!

  16. @51

    Yeah, though it was funny to hear them talk about the existence/nonexistence of clutch. There was no way they were letting go of that one.

  17. It’s their best hitter up, and he’s a lefty. I get the move even though I think Huddy could have gotten him out.

  18. Well, it’s not everyday you see 2 hit batsmen then the 3rd batter hit a baserunner with a batted ball.

  19. So that’s what all the mound-meeting was about… Trying to work out the old “hit-two-batsmen, strike-out-the-third-but-drop-strike-three, then-get-him-to-hit-the-baserunner-to-end-the-inning trick.”

  20. MLB finally unstuck, calling it a single on a ground ball. The out is credited to Freddie.

  21. It’s officially a single and a putout to the closest fielder. I’m sure they got out the tape measure to see if Freddie or Uggla was closer…heh.

  22. Well, to be fair, Wohlers was a Craig Kimbrel clone that one year, and most of ’96 (just not Game 4, unfortunately). But yes, I get the point. Perhaps replacing Jeff Reardon with Kimbrel would be in order, too.

  23. well if Minor spits the bit tomorrow, the choices are:

    Start Minor again anyway (most probable, IMHO)
    Start Medlin (least likely)
    Bring Teheran up from AAA (second most probable)
    Bring Jurrjens back (second least likely)
    Sign/trade for someone else (always possible, but Braves are too cheap to sign someone good, and their best trade chips are damaged at the moment)

  24. There is one guy in the bullpen who has 474 career major league starts, good for third on the active players list — he might be an option.

  25. They could move Livan to the rotation and call up Gearrin until Moylan is ready to return. Id rather see Minor start pitching like he’s capable again.

  26. Wouldn’t that stat be an argument against rather than for? Of course you are correct that it’s an option though. One I don’t think I like, or that Fredi should be reminded of, but an option.

  27. I’m a firm believer in “the simplest solution is best.” So I think we should trade Delgado and Teheran for Tim Lincecum, flip Lincecum to Toronto for Lawrie. Convert Jurrjens to a shortstop, slot him in at Gwinnett and trade Simmons for some minor league pitching depth. With Lawrie backing up Chipper, Francisco becomes redundant, but, we can keep him on as team chef or menu-advisor, because, look at him, he knows how to eat. Send Mike Minor back to Vanderbilt to be a bat boy and convenient scapegoat for their next point-shaving / drug smuggling scandal

    Then we sign Oswalt for a pro-rated share of 9 million, and let Moylan pitch every fifth day.

  28. David Price said in an interview before the game that he was a big Braves fan growing up. This is probably a long shot, but is there any chance that the Braves could land him?

  29. There is considerable consternation that the Braves will have to choose between signing our current starting CF or C. It would require a good bit more payroll to add Price and that would not appear to be in the cards.

  30. Drew Sutton was traded to the Pirates for cash considerations. Looking at their SS situation, he might get a good chance to win the spot.

  31. Few more Ex Braves, now Pirates notes: McLouth is 0 for his last 18 and Gorkys Hernandez was called up. I’m fairly certain the Pirates are the new Royals.

  32. It really is hard to put a good swing on a pitch with a giant piece of silverware sticking out of your back.

  33. Trading Sutton could be a case of doing right by a decent player. You want to attract decent journeymen to accept your spring invites, it does you good to show them you’ll find them a clearer path if they end up scratched from your plans.

  34. @111: well that giant piece of silverware’s been there for about three years now.

  35. – The Rays have lost 6 games at home all season (2 of them to the Braves).

    – The Dodgers have lost 4 games at home all season (2 of them to the Braves).

  36. Standing pat (mostly) during the off season is looking pretty good for the front office right about now. Who knew two new hitting coaches could make such a difference? Kudos, Birdman.

  37. Oh boy, Minor and his NL-leading 37 earned runs given up starting tomorrow in Great American Ball Park. Should be fun.

  38. @120 Let’s all have this mindset watching tomorrow’s game and I am sure we will all be surprised…and the Reds have moved Chapman to the closer role.

  39. He’s going to make everyone here look stupid when he only gives up seven runs in four innings of work.

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