NLCS, Game 2: Braves vs. Dodgers

If you like to be happy and enjoy smiling, start out your Braves NLCS Game 2 consumption by basking in the glory of Game 1 and a youngster that had been struggling to stay relevant in the lineup.

Adam Duvall Done, Camargo Added, and Pache Gets His Shot

Obliques suck and losing Adam Duvall sucks. Duvall was removed from the NLCS roster, which means he’ll be unavailable for the World Series should the Braves take down the Dodgers. Johan Camargo was added to the roster and I’m interested to see if he gets any playing time.

As of now, it looks like the recipient of Duvall’s playing time will be center field defensive stud Cristian Pache. Make no mistake, the kid can get it in the outfield and will likely battle Andruw Jones in best Braves defensive center fielder of all-time.

Clayton Kershaw Scratched

Gonsolin features a 95 MPH fastball with exceptional spin rate and a great splitter. He throws the 2 about 80% of the time then sprinkles in an ok slider and a below average curve. He’s not Kershaw, but he’s no slouch either (no one on the Dodgers is) and tonight’s game should be another good pitching duel.

Braves Lineup

2-0 just feels right. Go get it, boys!

Author: Ryan Cothran

Ryan is the site editor and manager of Braves Journal. Follow him on Twitter.

179 thoughts on “NLCS, Game 2: Braves vs. Dodgers”

  1. I do like the idea that Alex R brought up in the last thread about Gonsolin not throwing many pitches usually, particularly given he might have thrown this weekend. If we can strain their bullpen in games 1 and 2, that will help us convert our bullpen depth advantage into equalling out their SP depth advantage.

  2. With Kershaw out, last night’s win is even more important. That May pitched nearly 2 innings, he’s likely out as a starter until Game 5 (should there be one.) And Kershaw (should he pitch at all) likely only gets one start in the series total. We could not have better momentum at the moment, and a win tonight truly swings the series in our favor regardless of our starting depth. We only have to win three more in six chances.

  3. @3, great link, thanks! The basic takeaway is pretty straightforward: Ronald Acuna is a phenomenal athlete as well as an underratedly smart player, and great athletes possess the ability to make minute adjustments and then repeat them over time. One thing we’ve seen frequently over his three seasons in the big leagues is that he makes adjustments as quickly as any player in the game, and he’s both made some great plays and has also made many fewer boneheaded mistakes this year.

    He is literally developing an advanced understanding of the strike zone in a matter of months, and he’s combining the batting eye of a 35-year-old with the bat speed of a 22-year-old. And he’s very clearly not done improving.

    Imagine how good he’ll be when he’s as good as he can be.

  4. Excited to see Pache play defense. But it seems a wee bit early to suggest that he will likely rival Andruw Jones for the title of best Braves centerfielder of all time, no? He could turn out to be the best centerfielder in all of baseball over the next decade and it would still remain unlikely that he could seriously rival Andruw Jones. Andruw was the GOAT for a reason.

  5. Another Manhattan made, put in an order for good fried chicken since I don’t have time to cook. It is unfortunately merely good fried chicken, as that is the best available up here in Ohio. Some fries for the side in the fryer atm.

  6. The pregame show is 180 degrees from yesterday, all but digging the Dodgers’ grave. I’m not worried about the Hammers participating in that; Dodgers are obviously still a huge threat, though the last 24 hours has made us look a lot better in this matchup.

  7. What a play by Riley and Freddie!

    Of course Muncy’s unchecked swing should have ended the inning before that.

  8. That was a Mattingly-esque replay review there. No idea how they thought that would be overturned; reeks of desperation.

  9. @15

    He was so good his first postseason with Fox. Not so since. Used to have a lot of really great insights about the game as it was going on, now he’s just all over the same “back in my day” BS that almost every single color analyst without exception peddles non-stop. I figure the network executives got ahold of him and ruined him.

  10. This ump is not good. Case in point, 3rd pitch to muncy.

    D’arnaud is doing no favors, the low borderline pitches are being caught with glove movement towards the ground.

    Edit: thats 3 scoreless , c’mon offense

  11. Is this Ian Anderson or Sean Newcomb pitching tonight? Too many balls!

    And agreed. This ump has been all over the place tonight.

  12. Shut up, Smoltz, Anderson isn’t getting any gifts; they are in the strike zone. He sounds as whiny as the dodger hitters.

    Big decision whether to leave anderson in with the order up for the third time.

  13. 5 walks. That is not a recipe for success. Ian’s been getting out of it, but the Dodgers are going to capitalize eventually.

    ETA – The difference between Anderson vs. Newk/Folty is that this kid doesn’t get flustered and lose his shit when it happens.

  14. If there’s such a thing as a shaky 4-inning, one-hit shutout, we just saw it. Ian was really playing with fire out there.

    FWIW, Ian’s post-season ERA remains 0.00.

  15. Acuña looked really good in that atbat.

    And Gonsolin doesn’t finish the fifth. Good work to drain that bullpen.

  16. I feel a little silly asking this, but what is the celebration gesture the guys keep doing? Stirring? Screen scrolling? Something else?

  17. We are witnessing something that I have not witnessed since I was 13 years old: the Braves are in control of a NLCS.

  18. Hell, at this point I’d put Anderson back out for the 5th.

    And credit where credit is due – amazing catch by Bellinger there!

  19. I’m worried the long wait may affect Matzek, but that’s just the pessimist in me.

    Very happy with the braves approach these last couple of inning; drawn out at bats, fouls, good pitch recognition.

  20. Do you now go to an innings-eating long relief option like Tomlin or step on the neck and run your best relievers?

  21. I think the idea is to save Tomlin for a bullpen game — game 4, probably. But I’d let Matzek pitch at least 2 here if he can, maybe even 3. And definitely expect Webb to get an inning.

  22. @71 The clearest sign yet that this might be our year. Any other time, Turner would have ripped the next pitch off or over the wall to spark their comeback. In this crazy year, he grounds into the DP.

  23. @74 Amen. Feels like we’ve gotten more breaks already in this game in a half than we got in the last decade of playoff games.

  24. I want no long relievers, none of the guys we want to take heavy work in game 4, but basically the worst short relievers we have, all of which are still good.

  25. @74 haha, agreed.

    I think the most clear sign of me being traumatized by previous braves postseason performances is that at 6-0 in the 6th I am still SO VERY nervous and still believe the will lose this series somehow.

  26. Hey! A professional double!!

    @79 – You’re not wrong to be worried be a seeming solid 6-0 lead. Anything can happen. We all know why.

    (ETA – However, these guys are not those guys.)

  27. Honestly, I’m surprised and happy for Pache that it took this long For him to have an at bat in which he was so clearly outmatched.

  28. But actually though, Bellinger is a guy who just had a tough 60 games; he’s not Zoilo. I’d beat heavily on him next year.

  29. This is all great fun, but I remind everyone of a certain World Series that started 12-1 and 4-0 as the road team. Head in the game, boys.

  30. Jonathan, I love you, but I can guarantee you that my brain’s been reminding me of that all day and will not stop reminding me of it all week.

  31. @95 – I’ve already alluded to it a couple of times. It never leaves ones memory. Don’t get cocky, fellas.

  32. Here comes the kick to the nads….

    Hey if atlanta hits a HR its a rally killer, but if LA hits it, it’s just what they needed , right Smoltzie?

    And here comes martin in the 8th, our pen will be taxed.

  33. Still got ’em by four. Six outs to go.

    @103 Awesome! Donald Sutherland – world famous Expos fan.

  34. That was close. We kind of have the feeling of being in cruise control and hoping we don’t hit a curve here. Thankfully, we’ll have at least a 4-run lead with three outs to get.

  35. And Melancon catches Ozzie’s home run for the second night in a row! (Though he’s lucky he didn’t twist an ankle running down the mound in a pointless attempt to catch it…ha!)

  36. They’ve come out with the schedule for the rest of the series FYI:
    Game 3 – tomorrow, 6 p.m. ET (FS1) [which you already knew]
    Game 4 – Thursday, 8 p.m. (probably Fox)
    Game 5 (if nec.) – Friday, 9 p.m. (FS1)
    Game 6 (if nec.) – Saturday, 4:30 p.m. (FS1)
    Game 7 (if nec.) – Sunday, 8 p.m. (probably Fox)

    If the ALCS ends before Friday, we’d be at 8 p.m. on that day. If it ends before Saturday, 7 p.m. that day.

  37. I’ve heard this a few times – playing seven games in seven days is just like the regular season. Except it’s not. During the season you don’t spend the pen. You give guys an off day and let them rest, even if it means losing a game. That luxury does not exist in the postseason. During the season, it’s just 1 of 162 (most years.) In the postseason, every single game matters. You can’t waste a pitch.

  38. Tomlin for the top of their lineup and the Dodgers have to feel better about tomorrow now. That move blew up terribly

  39. Yeah yeah…you can go talk about that hockey momentum stuff with Adam Wainwright. All that matters is that we win. It was worth it to try and not to use Melancon.

  40. Snitker has been mostly good with bullpen management but Tomlin to face Betts, Seager, Muncy, etc, was stupid.

  41. O’Day and Tomlin should not pitch again in this series. BP fastballs are good for waking up a lineup and that’s exactly what they did

  42. The “Dodgers are awake” narrative is almost completely nullified by the fact that they’re down 2-0. They’re in big trouble, and they’re completely boned if they don’t win tomorrow. Essentially, all’s well that ends well.

  43. This was too close. But bottom line it’s a win the same as if it had stayed 8-3. The Dodgers threw 205 pitches tonight. We threw 177. Through 2 games the Dodgers have thrown 58 more pitches than the Braves. That continues to build in our favor in this 7 game stretch that could really pay off in the end.

  44. They should DL Tomlin with a case of the sucks and get newcomb or some position player on the roster.
    BTW , fuck alex wood

  45. The FOX crew just can’t help themselves from rooting for the Dodgers. Frank Thomas said the Freeman HBP woke them up. What the hell? Bury their asses tomorrow.

  46. @166

    That doesn’t even make any sense. How would our best player getting beaned galvanize the Dodgers? Anyway, that’s a particularly stupid comment, but national media guys, in general, are gonna do what national media guys do. It’s not that they love the Dodgers or are rooting for them or whatever, it’s just that they’ve spent all year focusing on the Dodgers and LA spent the last hour-and-a-half of that game doing interesting stuff.

  47. The Fox guys’ job is to keep as much of the country tuning in tomorrow as they can. You do that by playing up the Dodgers’ chances. The Braves are getting plenty of respect from them.

  48. I listened to the first 5 innings on Dodgers radio. I know the Braves were dominating, but the whole broadcast was a snoozefest. Funniest thing was in the first they were trying to talk up how good Taylor’s play on Ozuna was. They said Taylor just got the speedy Ozuna. Have you guys ever thought of Ozuna as speedy?

    Mac used to talk about how the Braves would go into “hibernation mode”. Whether they are up by 6 or tied, they don’t rarely do that this year. Even if they don’t score runs they are battling every inning. I think that will make a difference again as the series continues.

  49. If you love the “Dodgers have all the momentum despite being down 0-2” bullshit, see what happens if the Dodgers win tomorrow off of that “momentum.”

  50. @172, wow.

    The Rays are taking care of business. They feel like a bunch of those Giants teams who won the World Series — I look up and down their roster and I don’t get it, but they don’t stop winning.

  51. I know no one will watch a Rays-Braves series but us and Tampa Bay fans, but I also don’t care. This is all kinds of 1995 awesome and we deserve this.

  52. @172. I just became a huge fan of Melancon. That WAS a terrible question and good for him telling the idiot so and refusing to answer.

  53. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen DOB put his foot in his mouth like that, but I guess he’s also green at covering a team playing for these kinds of stakes.

  54. Misc…

    Good to see Pache’s first big hits in the post season. As well we did though because of that awful throw he made to third earlier. Nothing much on it from short CF it arrived 12 feet down the line, allowing the base runner plenty of time to arrive. I couldn’t believe my eyes, nor my vocal chords, The air was blue.

    Reading through the comments as the big lead gradually disappeared into the ether I saw no mention of Minter and the 3 run homer he gave up to Seager, surely the biggest red flag of all. He played the Minter role perfectly…the first two pitches were way outside, nowhere near. He does not have the confidence or cold skill to go around the plate that soon. But now he has to and Seager knows it. Boom. He is not trustworthy yet, command remains a problem early.

    Austin Riley is unbelievable at third, fitting he made the final play for the win. Now we don’t have to get on him for not hitting enough homers, they will come as his defense shows him his place is secure.

    Nick had a good day – yeah! Particularly quite early on when he battled hard for a walk and so was able to add another run from the next hit. Liked his double down the LF line too. And a single. Move him up the order??!

    Great win. As of this time, midnight, the Rays who were stuck behind Houston 0-1 for the first 5 innings are leading 5-2 in the 8th, their resurgence fueled by yet another awful Altuve throw. It’s the yips, baby, sorry.

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