83 thoughts on “Not That We Care: a guide to the playoffs, part 2”

  1. Wherein we’ll discuss how old a given pair of nuts need to be in order for it to be OK that Fredi references them in relation to our offensive dry spell.

  2. I mean, you have to take it on a sack by sack basis. Some nuts are done by 45. Some nuts still be swinging hard at 70.

  3. Would you trade Andrelton for Josh Donaldson? Rumored that Beane may shop him and they need to fill the SS position. Of course they may just resign Jed Lowrie.

  4. @ 5

    Yay!! My 2 month old spent his first week in NICU…I can’t describe how amazing it is to finally have everyone home after such a situation. Enjoy!

  5. JC’ed from last thread, directed at comments from last thread

    @31, a substitution in your phrasing that helps explain the phenomenon:

    “so keen to imitate an organization who has literally had less money than the Braves over the course of their last two decades”

    Anyway, that’s why it’s an organization worthy of admiration. The only way you’d want to imitate them is if the circumstances were the same.

    @34
    If they played both of the wild card games on the same day I bet more people would watch. It’s only a hunch, but I think Occasion Days make better viewing than times when there are merely Play-In Games

    -Hooray for Smitty! Nice to hear that, like Posey, y’all are out.

  6. Yeah, but if Liberty remains equivalently stingy, you’ve got a couple years ahead where the Braves are effectively a small market team, because they’ve committed a bunch of money to three players who either hurt them every time they lace up or are off the team. The next Braves GM needs to know how to operate on a constricted budget, and he could do worse than take his cues from Beane and the A’s.

  7. @14

    That’s my point. No one’s jumping on the Oakland ownership’s bandwagon. They’re jumping on the management bandwagon.

    For the last 15 years, the A’s highest payroll at opening day ($82.3 million in 2014–significantly higher than any other year in their team history) is lower than the Braves lowest payroll at opening day ($82.7 million in 2000). During that time-frame, the A’s have as many 88+ win seasons (10) as the Braves.

    I’m not sure we have to emulate the A’s organizational processes, but I think you’re being deliberately dense if you can’t see what people like about them.

  8. Greetings from NYC. Originally I was supposed to watch the Braves playoffs game wherever tonight. But an evening in New York ain’t too bad either.

  9. True story. The cost of a round trip ticket from ATL to LGA/JFK/Newark is, more or less, the same as the cost of a mid-tier hotel in NYC outside of big event/holiday weekends (i.e. not Easter, Christmas, Memorial Day or 9/11.) So, if by chance work takes you to NYC on back to back weeks, it’s zero-cost change to stay over the weekend and expense the hotel rather than expensing next week’s flight. Whether or not you can get away with meals depends on 1) how foodie you are, 2) how big your drink tabs tend to run, and 3) how much Carol in accounting likes that you flirt with her.

  10. Yeah, that didn’t work out — that said, the Pirates don’t really have an ace. Not sure it would have mattered who they put out there anyway.

  11. Tonight’s game should serve as a reminder that while Atlanta sucked ass down the stretch, they weren’t that far removed from the “playoff teams” in the NL.

  12. The Pirates did exactly what I thought the Braves would do even if they would make the playoff: getting shutout by Bumgarner.

  13. #32
    Philly’s a decent walking city for tourists. You can see a lot in an afternoon. If you’re checking out the historical stuff (Liberty Bell, etc.), South Street (with all its restaurants, pubs & funky shops) is nearby. City Centre’s alright, too. Lots of options there.

    Denver? Drink a lotta water. You really are a mile high in the mountains. And remember, when you drink one beer there, it’s like drinking one and a half.

    Genießen Sie!

  14. Well, Giants and Pirates both had a final record of 88-74, so they’d have had a one game playoff anyways.

  15. Honestly, I’d rather the Giants come out of the NL at this point than the Dodgers, despite the Giants’ two recent titles. I don’t think you should be able to buy a championship, and that’s what the Dodgers have been trying to do. But really, the best championship scenarios now all involve AL teams: Royals, Orioles, Tigers (only okay), and it would be cool to see Trout get a championship to add to the storybook beginning of his career.

    So long as the Nationals lose in embarrassing fashion, I can live with any outcome.

  16. The Nats are going to boot the ball all over the place. The Dodgers are too aggressive at the plate; the Cards will shut them down. I’m pulling for the Giants, but I think the Cards take the NL championship. I’m hoping the O’s win it all.

  17. I’m really hoping an AL team takes it this year.

    My rooting order is as follows:

    KC (Because it’s been so long and a good underdog story) -> Orioles (because they’re not the Yankees) -> Angels (because of Mike Trout) -> Tigers (only because they’re not an NL team) – > The Los Angeles Puigs of Los Angeles -> SF (even-year bullshit) -> Cardinals (I can’t believe I typed that… so gross) -> Nationals.

    I really, really, really, do not want the Nationals to win. My wife is from Northern Virginia and they’re all Nats fans, and this will make the holidays far more annoying than they need to be.

  18. #49
    Five minutes after the Yankees season ended, it was Girardi & Cashman fielding nothing but A-Rod questions.

    Crank up the soap opera again…

  19. I saw photos of a Yankee-blue #FORG1V3 shirt floating around online the other day. Please, let that catch on.

  20. My Post-Season rooting interest (such as it is).

    1. Pirates (Yay. Lost already)
    2. KC
    3. Oakland (yay.)
    4. Baltimore
    4b. LA Angels
    5. Cometary Impact extinguishing all life on Earth.
    6. St. Louis
    7. Dodgers
    8. Nuclear Winter
    9. SF Giants
    10. Zombie Apocalypse
    11. Natspos

  21. #54
    At this point, I’m all-in for Baltimore & Buck. An O’s/KC ALCS wouldn’t break my heart either.

    #53
    Yeah, notice the runner diving into first base. And that walk-off scene looked a little bit like Jordan-Hare.

    #51
    Most Yankee fans don’t have it in them to really love A-Rod, even if he’d never been busted. In a way, he’s like this generation’s Reggie. They liked his production, sure, but never really warmed up to him.

  22. @mlbbowman: The #Braves have hired Gordon Blakely as a special assistant. Blakely was a heralded Yankees scout for the past two decades

    @mlbbowman: Blakely moved to the Newnan area two years ago. He has long served as a guide to #Braves assistant GM John Coppolella,

  23. @57 Wow, third base coach is rapidly becoming the Braves version of Hogwart’s Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. I’m still trying to remember not to say “Snitkered”.

  24. So apparently we just need better players, better coaches, and a better GM. We’re set at manager.

  25. @63 The first step is about reshaping the front office after Wren messed that up big time in the eyes of JS. Seems like Blakely is a good hire.

    I don’t believe in the Bo Porter hiring until I see the official announcement. It doesn’t make much sense to me. And can we switch TP back to hitting coach?

  26. @42 I just love how he brought up Al Michaels saying “That is Maddux being … Maddux.”

    And I remember Skip said this a lot too “He is the best….he is simply the best.” I really miss those days.

  27. I like watching Josh Hamilton hit the baseball…but not as much as I like watching him do goofy things in the outfield. Buster Keaton out there.

  28. What deal did the Royals strike with the devil that they are able to get a runner home from third with less than two outs? I mean, whose soul do the Braves have to trade to manufacture a damn run?

  29. @67. I vividly remember that call by Skip. It was during the 1995 season, and the Braves still trailed the Phillies in the standings (they had swept us in a 4-game set at home early in the year). Maddux was masterful in a complete game, 3-1 victory at the old Vet – the start of what would be a 9-game winning streak for the Braves that vault them from 3.5 games behind the Phillies, to 4.5 games up. Obviously, even better things awaited that club.

    “He is the best, folks. He *is* the best.” – Skip Caray, 1 July 1995.

  30. Spike, thanks for sharing that priceless footage at #53. LOL at the comments, too:

    “At 3:51, there is a guy in the stands with a tuba. Who brings a tuba to a baseball game??”
    Reply: “Ever tried to catch a foul ball with a trumpet?”

  31. Why is everyone hopping on the Royals bandwagon? There’s a bit of cognitive dissonance between believing Fredi Gonzalez is useless and the “Braves Way” is hidebound, then turning around and riding for a bunty-ball team run by Ned Yost and assembled by Dayton Moore. When I watch the Royals I just see everything that annoys me about the Braves, plus some better bounces. They tried to give the wild card game away by refusing to deviate from the This Reliever’s Designated One Inning bullpen formula. Sound familiar…?

    Sometimes underdogs are underdogs because they have been run by idiots for a long time. Reflexively rooting for them when the sun randomly shines on them just enables them.

  32. @73 Root for the Royals so that Dayton Moore stays a Royal? Can a guy that ‘led’ (got lucky) a team to (lets say they get luckier) meaningful post season success, cut and run to another team?

  33. @72
    I was thinking the same thing. I’ve a feeling Hart will be the GM mentoring Coppolella, the assistant GM. Seems like a nice transition.

  34. @73

    There are aspects of Royals ball that I enjoy. Small ball is inefficient, yes, but I am entertained by hits, hit-and-runs, stolen bases, and plays on the infield in general, because those aspects of the game highlight the agility and teamwork of the athletes involved. Conversely, Adam Dunn retired yesterday as the dullest avatar of a type of game that bores me. I’m secure in the knowledge that “Royals ball” is unlikely to catch on (and I agree with the bullpen usage criticism…Ned Yost is also tied for 30th in that managerial talent), but I’d like to see it rewarded once in a while. Because it’s fun.

  35. #73
    I mean, who cares about all that?

    This team runs so much because it doesn’t have much power. (I mean, it’s not like a John Mayberry or Steve Balboni are bunting in the 1st inning.) Somehow, all the tumblers clicked the other night while they were down 4 runs with 5 outs left. Between that comeback & all those big defensive plays last night, it’s been fun to watch.

    If KC lucks up & wins a pennant, bully for them.

  36. Mirroring @77: yes. Offensive efficiency is frigging boring as all hell to watch. One-inning flame throwing relievers are efficient. They’re also hideously boring.

  37. Fascism is, in fact, boring to watch. Unless you’re like, Roma or a Cossack or Jewish. Then it’s existentially terrifying. Like a game built around middle relievers.

    Speaking of fascists and baseball, there’s a new thread up for the NLDSes.

  38. Really striking that DOB tweeted out this article — totally worth a read — by Mike Schmidt on how today’s hitters seem less inclined to accept the advice of coaches.

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