We are not at their level. When the hits must be produced, when the pitches need find their mark. 3/0 became 5/3 seemingly in a moment and there would be no comeback offered by us at the last throw of the dice. Three runs in ninth(Minter), 2 in the tenth(Jackson) stunned a sell out crowd who were  quite sure they were witnessing an inexorable march to victory by their heroes.

How many of them one wonders were fidgeting after the third with the Braves quite unable to add to their 2 run lead. All that was keeping us on top of the scoreboard was a simply magnificent display of pitching by Folty – at his very best which now is something quite considerable. 7.0 IP 4 hits  0 runs  0 walks. Against a hot, deep lineup which we would be reminded remained just that after Folty left after 7, his lead intact. Mercy be we finally got that insurance run in the seventh, surely that would do it?

That it came nowhere close to ‘doing it’ started with two out in the ninth which finally produced three runs off Minter who may or may not had been having blister problems. Jackson, who had performed stoutly under pressure recently withered under the pressure that had been rapidly accruing and allowed the two go ahead runs. We had nothing to offer in the bottom of the 10th.

Colorado has showed us consistently better middle order power and clutch bullpen finishing. Each game. Last chance tomorrow. At least I got this scribble up before midnight, what else is there to say?



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47 thoughts on “HIM WHO IS, HIM WHO WAS …………. BRAVES 3 ROCKIES 5”

  1. Rockies and Braves are roughly equivalent in talent, though (a) I think the Braves are superior on the whole, but (b) the Rockies are playing better than the Braves right now.

    While I’m tempted to say that the Braves will rebound once Ozzie rediscovers some semblance of plate discipline / productivity, in reality Braves’ season is going to hinge on whether its young pitching can pitch well in crunch time down the stretch. A lot of the arms we’re relying upon are untested and/or in uncharted territory innings-wise.

    I guess what I’m saying is, I can’t wait for Sam Freeman to come back and be our bullpen savior.*

    *only half-joking here.

  2. What blazon says is absolutely on point. Middle of the order power and shut down relief. Overall, yes, we are a better team going forward and the future but, right now, we lack both of what blazon points out – middle of the order power and shut down relief. I have been saying the same for at least a month. I really thought Duvall and Brach and Venters would address this problem but not well enough. Maybe lineup/roster management by Snitker is some of the problem but if the manager has to be perfect at managing the lineup then the team is marginal to begin with. We will do better. If Snitker had brought in Jackson still up one in the ninth, maybe he could have gotten that last out with us still winning before giving up two in the tenth. I dunno.

    We have been toasted by teams with a lot of power bats – especially in the West. Dodgers, Rockies, D’Backs. That power is their core. We match up a lot better with the Phils and play better against them too.

    I disagree that the depth to be added on Sept 1st will be meaningless. Debuting talented prospects usually works until the league figures them out and has to adjust. They could give us an instant lift while allowing regulars some breaks. Max’s rehab start did not go that well but he has a history of taking time to get into or back into a groove. I think Touki makes the next 6th man start.

    I am not sure how anyone can doubt that Folty can be an ace at this point after last night’s performance in an attempt to break the Rockies’ spell. DeGrom could not have pitched better.

  3. If Freeman doesnt hit then what can we do? I know the pen blew it, but when you only score 3 its usually a loss anyways. We need the magic fairy dust that was sprinkled on this offense to last two more months.

  4. At one point late in the game, the Braves were 2/8 with RISP. They’re getting on, but they’re not getting them in. Suzuki had a good night, as did Camargo. Freddie had a big at-bat.

    Minter just got left in too long.

  5. For Chief:

  6. Seriously though, it is a truism that power hitting and good bullpen work will win games, especially when the opposing team is currently struggling in those areas. I see no point in casting the Braves’ struggles vs the Rockies as some kind of indictment about this team’s roster, especially when you consider that our power stats and pen are just as good as theirs this year.

    The Braves can and will turn it on at some point soon – it’s almost inevitable. Granted it’s hard to watch the Braves lose winnable games but please keep the faith and double please stop falling into the DOOOOMED trap so easily.

  7. Culberson starting at SS. Culberson is literally the only button to press to shake up the lineup. Ender and his 80 wRC+ and .663 OPS is hitting 6th. The good news is that it appears that 90-92 wins will get you the NL East, West, or both Wild Card spots, but man, the NL… kinda sucks.

    I hope Donaldson is healthy.

  8. @9–exactly right.

    Last night’s loss was sickening. It does feel a lot like a literal “gut punch,” Another adjective often used for losses like this one is “demoralizing.”
    But that’s precisely what baseball teams need to avoid: letting one or a few bad games impact your play. This is where Snit earns his keep, especially with so many young guys..
    The good news is that there is a new game barely 12 hours after the end of this one.

  9. We just need some guys to get going. It’s just a mini-slump. When we won 5 straight against Miami/Milwaukee, we scored 7.5 runs/game. We’ve scored around 3 this series. That’s difference between losing three vs. winning two out of three.

    Freeman over Allard is an improvement, especially in being able to use an actual reliever in a one-inning traditional setting vs. just having a long man. Touki starting on Thursday or Friday against Miami gives each starter an extra day of rest. Vizzy may be back soon. Roster expansion will help a little. Fried is out there. Gohara. Lane is a pinch-running option, though he is not on the 40-man. They could DFA Reed or just use Reed in that capacity. There are some reinforcements out there.

  10. Someone had to pitch the innings in question, and with a lack of depth, the pitching prospects were as good as any, but the idea that our starting pitching prospects could be long men in relief hasn’t actually worked out well. Between Allard, Gohara, and Fried, their ERAs as starters is cumulatively half their ERAs as relievers.

    And interestingly, they haven’t chewed up innings any better than Freeman, Jackson, Carle, and other two inning guys. The SP prospects have only thrown around 2 2/3 innings on average when used in relief vs. the actual relievers who can chew up 2 innings with regularity. When they literally had no one else and had to use Parsons for 5 IP against Washington was really the only time where a prospect came in and pitched more than 3 innings. They really would have just been better off keeping a guy with middling status like Parsons on the roster the entire season letting him pitch in mop-up duty and kept the SP prospects in AAA getting regular work. Like The Lisp.

  11. Has anybody else had this thought re Acuna’s position NOW in the batting order? Start him fourth where all those hits of whatever count might have base runners ahead of them?

    We moved him to lead off to boost his morale and it has worked spectacularly well. He’s not going to be upset in any way in the middle, he’ll know why.

    There is one obvious snag. Who will be on base ahead of him without his huge prompt from the front? We really need two Acunas and we only have one!

    But there may be something we can do to measure such a change. Are baseball logarithms sufficiently flexible/sophisticated where we could go back and replay our last dozen games with him hitting fourth and thus compare the outcomes?


  12. @ #16

    Flip Ozzie and Acuña? Ozzie’s the one who needs to get going. Acuña can hit in the #2 hole. Freddie and Nick are as steady as they come.

  13. One thing’s for sure, all the blame for this should go to AA for not spending bigger at the deadline Coppy, whose blatant cheating put us in a place where we can’t afford to spend from our prospect stock Liberty Media for being so tight-fisted that we can only deal in prospects people who don’t pay for porn when they stay in hotels anymore whoever created the MPAA ratings system whoever created the Spoils System Amerigo Vespucci original sin Andruw.

  14. Mallex Lydell Smith, who played his college baseball at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, FL, former stomping grounds of yours truly and home of the fightin’ Florida Gators, has eclipsed the round number of 3 bWAR this year. That’s almost double Ender Inciarte’s production, more than double Dansby’s, higher than Culberson even adjusting for PAs, higher than Camargo, and very similar to Nick’s 3.2 bWAR.

    So for all of you that said that he was pretty much a 4th outfielder, a player with a limited skillset who would flounder, that he wasn’t worth missing, you were wrong. And you should feel bad. And you should apologize to Mallex. Because Mallex is an excellent, excellent baseball player, and the Braves and Rays are silly to have committed long-term to Ender and KK.

    With that said, I would like to put out there that any discussions about Sean Rodriguez will be ignored because… well, nobody’s perfect.

    But seriously, Mallex has been great, and because 1) there’s no one else and 2) he has a great personality, he’s pretty much become the face of the Rays. .301/.374/.426 line, 26 SBs, hair-on-fire and league-leading 9 triples. For the Rays, he has truly become a Rock. He Raines over the competition. Ithankyou…

  15. I’m pleased for Mallex, but I’m especially glad for you, Rob. “I told you so” can be so satisfying.
    Mallex does seem like a great guy.

  16. The 2018 Rockies were built to contend this year. They spent on their bullpen — although not all of it was money well spent. The lineup, with the exception of catcher, has potentially helpful bats at every spot. The 2018 Braves were built to get by. It has helped that they received more from, for example, McCarthy and Sanchez (although he looks to be a pumpkin today). But the construction of this team was not about 2018, and it shows against a team that has been sizzling for seven weeks and was built for success this year.

  17. He is doing better than Luiz Gohara, that’s for sure.

    The Rockies are hitting some pitches that shouldn’t be hit. Story’s homer was golfed almost out of the dirt. Arenado just lunged at a pitch almost in the other batter’s box for an RBI single.

  18. I haven’t given up on Allard at this point, but I would have never believed that Sam Freeman could be an upgrade over anyone. Hopefully he can figure it out soon, but Kolby was bad. Welcome back Sam – kind of.

  19. Ozzie’s OPS is .659 this month. He needs to lay off the first-pitch swings for a bit.

  20. I told you so
    not just what I know
    but I knew it before you did
    and my wife, it’s noteworthy she too did.


    Gabriel Garcia Marquez
    does not care what anyone says
    a pitcher hitting .345
    should be just as famous as an old writer no longer alive.

  21. oh my god, why even pinch hit duvall?

    culberson takes one for the team, and the team then goes three outs on five pitches

  22. Oh, why, why, why let Ronald bat? He’s oh for his last three. Sitting him now or not playing him at all would boost his confidence and enhance his value to us down the road.

  23. The pitching has been good enough to at least split this series. The offense has been good enough to get swept.

  24. There is one positive to all this. We know now, weeks still to play, we are not nearly as good as we thought we were up against quality opposition. There is still time to put this lesson to work, as best we can.

    And also. We have played the Yankees, Dodgers, Cubs etc this year and none are at Colorado’s level, the way they are meshing now.
    Who’s going to beat them? We nearly did, twice but we are not now a clutch team.

  25. I don’t see how you can conclude “we are not nearly as good as we thought we were up against quality opposition,” unless you thought we were incapable of losing. The fact is we could face the Rockies again starting tomorrow and sweep a 4 game set just as easily. That’s just how baseball goes.

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