Braves 5, Reds 4

Ah, Cincy, a southern city accidentally placed on the northern banks of the Ohio River, whose primary claims to fame are the TV show WKRP in Cincinnati and not being Cleveland. I hate baseball games there, since it can turn even a hitter without any pop whatsoever into Hank Aaron. It adds an extra layer of anxiety to a ballgame not found anywhere else this side of Philadelphia. Even after it’s over you don’t actually feel like it’s over. I can only say with 82% certainty the Braves won this game.

The two teams exchanged two-run innings in the bottom of the first and top of the second, and this game projected to be one of those bandbox games where a bajillion runs would score and the team that batted last would win. Suddenly, though, both Tyrell Jenkins and Cody Reed, whose combined ages just barely add up to A.J. Pierzynski‘s age (I kid, but he was in the big leagues when they were both 5, so it’s not that far off), settled down and gave their team six innings of pretty good ball. The Braves finally broke through again in the 7th when Gordon Beckham hit a two-run home run to put the Braves on top.

Jim Johnson tried to close the game out in the 9th and failed spectacularly, giving up the tying runs and four hits before being pulled with two outs in the inning. He is not the Johnson he was last year.

Although they were infused with new life, the Reds could not finish the job and allowed the Braves to plate the winning run in the 11th on a sacrifice fly. You can’t predict ball.

A win for Jenkins on the eve of his birthday would have been fun, but winning a game in Cincy in any fashion is nice. It would be nicer if these games actually mattered, but it is still nice nonetheless.

Aybar delenda est. Like, yesterday. Please. Someone. Anyone. We’re begging over here. And starting to get a little desperate. Aybar delenda est.

21 thoughts on “Braves 5, Reds 4”

  1. Jenkins is basically a harder throwing Jair Jurrjens. It won’t be clear how he succeeds from his peripherals, but he will.

  2. We have a catcher it appears. Over the next few weeks. Hard to believe.

    Something from the first game re our pitcher’s bunting-you’ll remember how awful Wisler was, twice. Cowboy Jeff Brantley, a likeable blowhard, got more and more incensed during the first AB till he sounded like a suicidal Braves fan. Then he noticed something and they got their cameramen to focus on his feet as the pitcher released the ball.

    Wisler’s weight was transferred back on his heels, his butt stuck out towards the 3rd base dugout. Eventually they came up with an astonishing slo-mo close up of his spikes tilting back into that position as the ball was released- ultimately showing AIR under the front 2/3 of the shoe.

    Give Cowboy his due. He drew the obvious conclusion. He’s frightened of the ball. Whatever, we must put a stop to these embarrassing bunt attempts by some of our pitchers.

  3. @1

    The harder throwing part gives me hope that he can clean up his periphs. Miss a few more bats, induce a bit more weak contact.

    Would really like to have Gant, Perez, and Simmons back.

  4. Keith Law, while noting that the Padres probably have more upside in their system, says the Braves still have the best farm system in baseball:

    Top 50 prospects: Dansby Swanson, Ozhaino Albies, Kolby Allard, Sean Newcomb

    Nothing has changed here except that Atlanta has added even more pitching to their stable of high-upside young arms thanks to a draft heavy on high school pitchers that saw them land two of the top 15 or so talents in the draft in right-hander Ian Anderson and lefty Joey Wentz. They also signed the consensus top prospect in the July 2 class, Venezuelan infielder Kevin Maitan, whose swing and projected hit tool earn him comparisons to a young Miguel Cabrera.

    Their system has seen big comebacks from injury from Kolby Allard and Max Fried, and some modest progress from some of the system’s lesser-known bats, including Ronald Acuna (before his injury) and Dustin Peterson. They still lack impact hitters, with their best position-player prospects primarily up-the-middle guys with defensive or positional value but without huge power potential, but there’s so much pitching here that even with a typical attrition rate Atlanta should be able to move some of this surplus to acquire bats when they need to. (emphasis added)

    Me, I’m pretty excited that they’ve already seen enough out of Wentz to promote him to Danville.

  5. Brett Cumberland has OPS’d .519 in his first 15 games at Danville with 1 HR, 20 K’s, and 3 BB. The encouraging part is that it’s only 15 games, but you’d like to see something at rookie ball from him.

  6. @9, Our 2015 second round pick, Lucas Herbert, has an OPS of .509 at Rome this year. Maybe it’s the curse of Betancourt that we won’t be able to scout or develop our own catchers.

  7. I personally hated Herbert as a 2nd rounder, but they were pretty clear that he was an advanced receiver and the bat might take time. Kinda the anti-Cumberland, where the thought was that Cumberland’s bat could play, but polishing his defense could take too long and waste the best years of the bat.

  8. Alex Wood, facing an “arthroscopic debridement” of his elbow, is likely out for the year. The crazy thing is, he probably injured it originally while batting.

  9. Welp, Cincy took the season series, unsurprisingly.

    We are playing .347 baseball, and we are on pace to go 56-106.

    To win 60 games, we have to play .403 baseball for the final 67 games.

    To avoid 100 losses (i.e., win at least 63 games), we have to play at least .448 baseball for the rest of the season (a 30-37 record).

  10. Well, this is certainly the worst club we’ve had since the last time we lost 106.

    FWIW, in ’88, however, we only played 160 games.

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