Brewers 6, Braves 2

Matt Wisler tossed a quality start — six innings, three runs — and this “offense” hasn’t scored more than two since last Friday, so the loss was pretty automatic. They were stunningly inefficient, too. After racing ahead to a two-run lead on a Tyler Flowers homer in the first inning, they left runners on in the third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, and ninth. They managed to get no runs in the 6th, when they had men on second and third with one out; likewise in the 7th, when they loaded the bases with two outs.

After facing a hellishly difficult schedule in the first month, these two paragraphs from the AP recap sum up basically every pitcher we’ve faced in the last three weeks:

[Wily] Peralta (3-5) gave up seven hits, two runs, two walks and struck out four in 5 1/3 innings. The right-hander began the game with a 6.99 ERA and a .363 opponents’ batting average in nine starts this year, and he was 1-8 with a 5.77 ERA in his past 13 road starts.

But against the weak-hitting Braves, Peralta commanded his mid-90s mph fastball with relative ease in his last four-plus innings to improve to 2-1 with a 1.65 ERA in five starts against Atlanta.

83 thoughts on “Brewers 6, Braves 2”

  1. At least when a lousy pitcher beats us now, we can chalk it up to a historically bad offense. This is less frustrating that watching sterling Hitchcock blow through a lineup of all-stars.

    Looks like the Lightning took out my Samsung TV. Anybody know how to fix that? I’ll otherwise have to miss our next few losses.

  2. Wow .. I just went thru our roster ..wow is this team bad … Francour leads out OF’s in average hitting .. Freeman is struggling and acts as if he doesnt care .. our pitchers are afaid to make a mistake or they loose .. thye cant depend on getting any runs … the bad thing .. is we have 0 power options at major league level or minors .. our scouting for top noth hitters with power is terrible .. all these other Major league teams have guys hitting HR’s a long HR’s .. we cant scratch one over the outfield wall … cant tbelive they rate out minor league org as 3rd best in baseball … must be all n pitching potential … but Braves will never be back till they get some Major league hitters with POWER.

  3. Was at the game – – and hated to see Wisler give up a 2 run single to the opposing pitcher. Certainly didn’t see that coming.

    Was a gorgeous day at the Ted for the first few innings – – and then it got pretty nasty.

  4. Just looked at the records of out minor league teams ..looks iike on same path … the AAA team at Gwinnett in .500 – 24-24 records ..all others .. Mississippi and Carolina and Rome all loosing records .. and we supposed to have the 3rd best minor league system .. may be time to clean house in lower levels as afar as coaching .. players not developing as well as expected .. or scouting needs overhauled .. I would hire some scouts known for recognizing power potential

  5. Nobody is going to trade power bats for mediocre pitching. We have to spend money.

  6. I have long contended that until the Braves ACQUIRE some power, none of this matters a whit. All these pitching suspects mean very little. I will guess that of the 10 prospects (suspects) maybe 1 of them become a 2.0 WAR pitcher. The rest will wash out, be mediocre, etc.

    You can win with pitching and defense, but its hard to do so. You have to be BETTER at what you do than almost everyone else to win this way. I’d rather take my chances getting a 3 run homer or two than trying to win the hard way.

    I am VERY skeptical of these pitching prospects if you haven’t noticed. Not one of them are accumulating stats that ‘jump off the page’ or seem to trend in the way of long term BIG success.

  7. Boy Alex, you’ve wrinkled some Twitter feathers with this gut-punch. Bravo to you for having the cajones to write this.

  8. “I will guess that of the 10 prospects (suspects) maybe 1 of them become a 2.0 WAR pitcher. The rest will wash out, be mediocre, etc.”

    2 WAR is the definition of a mediocre pitcher–a #4-5 starter in a decent rotation. Are you including Wisler and Folty in this prognostication?

  9. I think Folty will never be much. Wisler, maybe. I was more referring to the ones still in the minors, etc. Newcomb will never be anything, Jenkins no, I seriously doubt Touissant either. None of those guys are going to be what some people have decided that they think they will be, IMO.

    Just my opinion. Having said that, I think we’re so beat down as fans that we’ve forgotten what it takes to be great. Even if some of these guys are just good, that’s not good enough to WIN.

  10. I think Newcomb is going to be very good. I also think Allard is going to be a stud. Chris Ellis is pitching well in AA right now and Mike Soroka looks good at Rome. Max Fried had two bad starts in a row, but has settled in some after not pitching for almost two years.

    Tehran, Wisler and Folty have pitched much better this year than I thought they would. All three are young and could be an elite top three.

    Don’t sleep on Simms. He has had some issues at AAA, but leads all minor leagues in strikeouts.

  11. Some of the pitching will be good. But the idea of trading it for bats isn’t sound. Then you need pitching again. Trading one good player for another isn’t often a net win. The thesis in play here is that we will keep the good pitching and trade the mediocre/bad pitching for bats before anyone realizes the truth. Basically we’ll just win every trade.

    I still say we will need to replace the entire starting 8 (or 6 if you pencil in Swalbies) before we even have a prayer of finishing .500, and we don’t have enough pitching to wheel and deal to that level. If we can’t buy bats we can’t field a competitive offense.

  12. @14

    I think we have to upgrade five. I think Swalbies, Freeman and Mallex Smith are our core every day players. Inciarte is still a question mark.

    I also think Ruiz will be at third by the end of August.

    We really need to look outside the organization for a catcher and a corner OF bat. We will need some pop from those spots too.

    I would like to get Trevor Brown from the Giants.

  13. I get the pessimism, and for any one of these pitchers, betting on them to bust is a pretty safe bet, especially for more volatile guys like Toussaint. But it’s pretty unlikely that none of them become even a league average #3 starter. Quite a few of them have ace ceilings, and there’s a fair chance one of them approaches it. I like Sims or Allard to do that.

    The power situation is more dire, but that can change quickly with a good draft. If we need one bat, it becomes a lot more feasible than needing 3 or 4 bats.

  14. I think this offseason will tell us a lot about the way the next few years will go. It’s pretty open-and-shut that the Braves seem to have about $40-50M+ to spend in the offseason. Between increased revenue, CJ/Swisher/Bourn coming off the books, 1-year deals expiring, and how cheap up-the-middle and the rotation will be, there will be lots of available money. Any players they sign will be signed to multiple years. If they don’t get anyone this offseason, I really see the abyss in our future.

  15. Outside of Cespedes, there isn’t much worth spending on, is the problem.

    I’m not sure I want to be the winning bid for Lucroy. I definitely don’t want to be for Bautista/Encarnacion.

  16. On a brighter note, I am taking my two kids who are Braves fans to Turner this weekend to see the Ted. They wanted to see it in person before they close it.

  17. Thanks for the article, Alex. It’s funny to read the negative comments because we’ve had all of those conversations here over the years. The write up is more poignant when you have the full context that you couldn’t possibly provide in one article.

  18. @3 – Agreed. Last night was my Turner Field swan song. It was a great night before the skies opened up.

  19. @3 – Agreed. Last night was my Turner Field swan song. It was a great night before the skies opened up.

  20. Thanks, all. It’s been interesting to see a generation gap in the comments over there. The younger guys are apoplectic that I insulted the team. But a couple of people seem to feel like the article voiced the way they’ve been feeling, too.

  21. Thanks for writing that piece at HBT, Alex. It sums up a lot of what I’ve been thinking for two-plus years now.

  22. @15, I see Freeman as just a guy, and he plays probably the easiest position to fill. Mallex and Inciarte are both 4th OF’er types from what I’ve seen so far. We can play one in CF, but certainly not both in the same outfield.

  23. @30/31… comments like those make me appreciate Braves Journal even more. Love this place.

  24. I don’t think Freeman is just a guy (Reid Brignac is just a guy). There are only 5-6 truly elite position players, and there are 30 teams. The remaining 24-25 teams have guys like Freddie Freeman as their best position player. I think Freddie fits in well in the approach that the Royals have where they don’t have a top-5 position player, but they have average to above average players at every position. When your highest paid player is BJ Upton or Nick Swisher, you’re going to be stuck with Freddie Freeman and not much else. You’re right, krussell, that nothing changes until we spend money, and then I think Freddie Freeman gets insulted with a couple more guys that fit his caliber, and high basements for other position players.

    This really fits the Braves of the ’90s and ’00s. Chipper was a transcendent player, but we never had a Bonds, Thome, Belle, big huge thumper guy. We did, however, have three aces, and that’s another argument.

  25. The Red Sox field an entire lineup of hitters as good or better than Freeman. When I say he’s just a guy I mean that’s what I expect going forward. Looking at the past he’s a good to great player.

    We actually did have a lot of thumpers alongside Chipper. McGriff, Galarraga, Sheffield, Klesko, Justice, and so on…the list is long and good.

    Those are the lineups (plus world-class pitching) it takes to win as consistently as they did. It’s a very uphill climb to get back to those days.

  26. Those are the guys who come post here about two times, then their mom finds out they are on the internet past 10:00 and they get grounded.

  27. I found this one quote in the AAR article perplexing:

    ‘And, from a practical level, the team’s approach seems self-defeating, because Atlanta is a college football town with a decided fair-weather approach to its pro teams. “I think it’s really shortsighted,” says Cliff Harpe, an attorney in Cordele, Ga. “In Atlanta, if you have a superb product you can make superb money. But if you have a mediocre product, you can’t even make mediocre money.”’

    That suggests we should rebuild and try to get a superb product, because we had a mediocre product at best in 2014. What am I missing?

  28. Adonis back up. Not sure he’s coming up to be a bench bat. He’s back to 3rd with Beckham going to 2nd?

  29. Congrats Alex on a well-done article. I think you captured what many of us think.

  30. Eagerly awaiting a tweet like “whichever punk commenter is Massachusetts real estate developer Chris Nicholson needs to meet me in Somerville tonight to catch these hands”

  31. I think the nuance in AAR’s article is a bit over the heads of your average reddit downvoter. Look I’m hypercritical of the current regime, not because I hate the team or hate baseball or the Braves, but just the opposite. This team is background music for the summer for families all across the south. Nobody expects to win every year, but I do expect them to try. If you are going to lose on purpose, at least say so and stop spewing ridiculous bullshit about accelerated timelines. If you are spending 100 million on this lineup, you aren’t doing it right. “Trust the process” doesn’t carry weight when you mess up damn near everything you touch.

  32. All the negative commenters on AAR’s piece are focusing on the baseball aspects, where AAR was trying to write a piece about the customer service aspects of the Braves organization, I think.

    Modern sports fans are informed enough that it’s long-term corrosive when you try to push a couple extra season tickets in the moment by insisting that Markakis or Aybar or whoever make you competitive. Be honest about what you’re doing. Offer people a discount, or something, give them some assurance that you care about their experience as customers while you’re working on your next long-term plan. These guys put Jeff Francoeur on billboards on I-20 and called it a day.

    This is why Sam Hinkie failed: he couldn’t balance having a great plan for a dynasty league fantasy team with running a real world entertainment business with human customers.

    Unfortunately in places like /r/braves the discussion never advances beyond “but a rebuild was necessary because Wren gutted the farm system duh!!! fair weather fanzzz!!”

    Which is disappointing because if the demand for any vaguely baseball-themed product dressed in tomahawks is inelastic enough, the Braves’ corporate overlords have no incentive to improve.

  33. Anyone who’s lived here since the 70’s knows that demand is anything but inelastic when it comes to sports entertainment dollars in Atlanta. You don’t win, we don’t come watch. We get killed for it in the national narratives, but I think it’s a sign of high collective intelligence.

  34. @44 Good thing I don’t use Twitter. I went over to Reddit to learn that I have a “shiny ass”.

  35. But according to you, we shouldn’t expect any of the 16-year olds we sign in 2016 to appear in the major leagues until 2022.

  36. If he’s that good he should play for the majors as early as possible. All I’m saying about the 16 year olds is that the odds are stacked against them being that good.

    Contrast that with the 19 year old and 22 year old middle infield prospects that everyone is so scared to rush…I’m all for calling them up if they are good.

  37. They won’t have the range they have now forever. Hell, Aybar had range when he was 19.

  38. Mr. Remington, sir:

    You write good, and I could almost imagine your interviewees actually posting on Braves Journal.

    I am in awe. I witness your superiority.

    All hail, AAR and his cast of quoters.

  39. So far this game, Aybar is 0 for 1 with a HBP. I’m telling you, he’s on the upswing since the chicken bone incident.

  40. Markakis is rocking a cool .480 OPS since the beginning of May, which is kinda around the time it was said he was “dogging it” and he was rumored to be traded. This ain’t good. I bet he is mentally done with being a part of Dr. Coppy’s Mad Science Project.

  41. Great job on the article Alex. BTW, I used to not put stock in the hard schedule thing, but I’m a believer now. Do you realize we may go the entire year with everyone we play having a better record than us? Also, several teams began 2 to 3 game winning streaks when they played us. Combine that with several opposing pitchers pitching their best games of the year against us and it’s been a predictably hard year so far.

  42. @62

    If you had a tip jar, I’d fill it. The subtlety of your prose is astounding.

  43. Thanks, who said sarcasm is lost on Internet blogs? My biggest concern tonight is we don’t go into extra innings. I haven’t confirmed this but I bet Miami has a better record in extra inning games than we do. Another sign of our schedule misfortune.

  44. Nice, Newcomb went 5 IP, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 ER tonight. Nice to see that walk total coming down. Sadly, he still has a 3.71 ERA and 29 BB in 46 IP. With that said, he’s averaging a K/IP. Man, I hope he can put it together.

  45. The team thanks DJ Times editor Jim Tremayne, real estate developer Chris Nicholson & disability benefits specialist Bill Smith for the win.— John Choppolella (@atlsportscholar) May 28, 2016

  46. At the risk of stating the obvious, the Braves have to crush the next two drafts. No mistakes allowed.

  47. @74. Yep. If you’re not going to spend any money on FA, you damn well better have the best scouts known to mankind.

  48. What is a draft mistake? Because lots of guys we draft the next two seasons won’t pan out, even with a historically successful draft. We certainly need to convert on some position talent, and it would really help to hit on these top 3 picks.

    @75, none of us know what the braves will spend in FA in 2017-19 when adding wins to the mlb team becomes valuable. We do know they chose not to spend diddly to make a 100-loss team a 95-loss team. Relative angst over that fact varies widely.

  49. We better find some good talent via trades. Next years FA market is brutal. Lucroy’s club option will be picked up. It’s pretty much leaves you with Weiters, Prado, and Bautista as options for us.

  50. @76 Based on what you know, if you had to bet on what the Braves will do in FA (if there were good FAs to get) how would you bet? I’m in enormous Missouri mode on FA spending going forward with this ownership.

  51. 2017:

    C – Tyler Flowers
    1B – Freddie
    2B- Albies
    SS – Swanson
    3B – Ruiz/Riley
    LF – Smith
    CF – Inciarte
    RF – Markakis

    Castro and Peterson as backup MI. Fill out the edges, and the pitching staff is young and getting better with a lot of arms in the pipeline as well.

    2018:

    C – FA need
    1B – Freddie
    2B- Albies
    SS – Swanson
    3B – Ruiz/Riley
    LF – Smith
    CF – Inciarte
    RF – FA need

    Free agents in 2018 include the hair-do from DC and Josh Donaldson.

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