Braves Clobber Phillies 15-3

Make it 4-4 since the All Star Break, and still no streak. 

The Braves kept their pattern going on Saturday night, following up Friday’s 5-1 loss to the Phillies with a 15-3 win at Citizens Bank Park. Loss-win-loss-win-loss-win-loss-win since the break now, and 47-48.

I guess if you’re only going to win every other day you might as well make your wins big, and the Braves certainly did that tonight. 

Positives:

  • His crazy streak without swinging and missing at a pitch in 35 plate appearances finally ended, but I don’t even know how to describe Freddie Freeman at this point. He’s on one of the hottest tears of his career, and that’s saying a ton by his lofty standards. Extend this man, Alex.
  • What if we just told Dansby Swanson every ballpark was Citizens Bank Park? Would the Braves have the best hitting shortstop baseball has seen since Ernie Banks in that case? It’s worth a try seeing how well he has been swinging the bat in this series. 
  • Speaking of swinging it well, Abraham Almonte! He got himself going again with three hits tonight including a second inning home run off Vince Velasquez.
  • Austin Riley: Back in the home run column 
  • The 1-2-3 double play Drew Smyly induced in the fourth inning was huge. At that point it was only a 6-0 game, and one base hit could have gotten the Phillies back in the game. Instead Smyly got the perfect ground ball and deflated the only real rally of the game from Philadelphia. 
  • The Braves have to lead the league in the number of times they’ve forced the opponent to use a position player on the mound this season. Yet again they burned through an entire bullpen and got to Ronald Torreyes tonight. 
  • It’s always a good night when six out of the eight position players in the starting lineup record an RBI. It’s an even better night when five of them have more than one RBI.
  • Regardless of anything else happening in the season, it’s always refreshing to hear all the boos in Philadelphia. What a sweet sound, especially when it’s as constant as it was tonight. 

Negatives:

  • Really only one negative from tonight, and that’s Smyly’s injury status. He left the game after four innings with what the team called a knee injury. As with everything else on the injury front in 2021, we’re hoping for the best but bracing for the worst.

Former Brave Of The Day: 

Josh Donaldson had an RBI double in the bottom of the ninth for the Twins against the Angels, accounting for Minnesota’s only run of the game. 

Quote Of The Game: 

“”The key to winning baseball games is pitching, fundamentals and three run homers.”

— Earl Weaver 

Tomorrow’s Goal: 

Get another quality start from Touki Toussaint and hope the offense has just enough to turn it into a series win.

51 thoughts on “Braves Clobber Phillies 15-3”

  1. Looking forward to seeing Touki tomorrow. Hopefully he has finally put it all together with the help of the AAA coach.

  2. Almonte, Heredia, and Adrianza have grown on me as bench players. The 3 are sporting an OPS of .762 (Almonte), .732 (Heredia), and .756 (Adrianza). None of them are doing anything special and they shouldn’t be starters, but at this point we could be doing a whole lot worse and they are much better than expected.

  3. Have people seen the calls Doug Eddings made against the Padres last night? Robo umps when?

  4. After a big win, today’s game is incredibly important. Unfortunately I think we are 2 and 18 in incredibly important games after big wins this year.

  5. @2 I was looking at the Mets’ and Braves’ rosters and stats looking for hope (didn’t find any), and I noticed the same thing this morning. They would be the nucleus of a very good bench if they weren’t needed in the lineup.

    This team would have ended up pretty good if it had Ozuna’s career performance, Acuna, Soroka, d’Arnaud, and the inevitable additions they would have made at the deadline.

  6. Btw, Dansby has a 94 OPS+ at this point. Since the beginning of last year, which is 157 games and 663 PAs, he has a 99 OPS+, 27 HRs, 11 SBs, good defense, and a 3.4 fWAR. That’s a plenty good SS for $6M, and if he keeps this up, he’ll certainly be tendered a deal for next year.

  7. I would note that if the Braves win the World Series this year, they will be the team that crossed the .500 mark the latest in the season. As noted here https://bravesjournal.us/2021/05/27/drawing-conclusions-from-mediocre-performance/ the record holders for the moment are the 1964 Cardinals, who were .500 on July 24th. On the other hand, they were 10 games back at that point and still won the World Series, which is why I think that even the Nats may still be alive.

  8. @8–that assumes they will need to cross the .500 mark to win the division. Almost certainly will be necessary, but it’s possible to win it with 81 wins. The 1973 Mets went 82-79 and went to the World Series.

    And man what a finish to the 1964 NL pennant race. Thanks for those memories, JonathanF.

  9. @9 The Mets are on pace for 87 wins. They would have to really collapse for 81 wins to win this division. And even still, do you want to go to the playoffs having won 81 games? I would bet any amount of money that the World Series winner will not come out of the NL East this year.

  10. I’ll take the other side of that bet at 10000-1 odds.

    Actually, there are 6 divisions, and the neither Wild card is coming from the NL East, the complete crapshoot odds would be 20-1. (Are they running last year’s cockamamie wildcard rules or not this year?) I’ll take the NL East Winner at 200-1, easily.

  11. @6 I’ve never understood the Dansby hate. He’s a decent enough player. He’s never become the superstar that he was he was projected to be. So what? He should be hitting 8th on this team but with injuries he’s hitting higher. I don’t think there is any doubt that he comes back next year. If he doesn’t come back who plays shortstop? I don’t see the Braves paying Story and Freddie.

  12. @12, pretty sure they’re using the pre-covid wild card rules. The two wild card game losers will be out before the NL East winner has to play, so it seems like the NLE winner’s crapshoot chance would be 12.5% (I never can remember whether that’s 7-1 or 8-1 odds). If the NL East winner has about a 40% chance of winning each of the three series, that would give it a 6.4% chance, making a fair bet somewhere around 15.5-1.

  13. @15 Why would the NL East winner have a 40% chance of winning each series?

  14. I love watching Touki pitch. I’m excited about watching the kids pitch in the second half.

  15. THIS is the Touki we have been waiting to see. Thank you Mike Maroth for unlocking this potential.

  16. @15,16: A team with a 45% chance of winning each game has about a 40% chance of winning a 7 game series. If you assume that the NL winner will be the lowest division winner, they should expect to face a team in which they’d be an underdog in each round. 45% per game is not a terrible guess for that, though it is a little lower than I suspect would actually occur.

  17. (edit: This is a longer version of what JonathanF said) @16, well, they’ll be facing a better team, so if they have on average a 45% chance of winning any one game, they have about a 40% chance of winning at least four out of seven games. If they have a 40% chance of winning the NLDS, a 40% chance of winning the NLCS if they get there, and a 40% chance of winning the World Series if they get there, that’s the 6.25% overall. It’s probably a little higher for the NLDS (they should face the Central winner which won’t have that much better of a record) and lower for the NLCS (they would face a team from the West with a much better record), but I’m just guesstimating anyway.

    Yeah, Touki is fun to watch.

  18. @22 Isn’t he only scheduled to call so many games during the season? Was he scheduled for this series?

  19. What this Touki makes me think of is a future rotation that might include Soroka, Fried, Anderson, Ynoa, Touki, Davidson. That’s six SP without signing any more FAs. And doesn’t include Wright or Wilson either of which could be decent MR.

  20. Good to see that Touki’s curves have kept their (I assume) ungodly high spin rate after the crackdown on substances. At the Chop Fest a few years ago, Soroka told a bunch of people that the main reason Touki had such a great curve is that he has huge hands, but I had wondered if he was getting any extra help.

    (P.S. The writers who talk about Soroka’s maturity and poise aren’t kidding. He was 21 at the time, looked like a college sophomore, and sounded like a 45-year-old pitching coach.)

  21. @27, 28

    Hard to keep track of them all, indeed. I’d trade one of Morton and Smyly regardless of whether we were “buying” or “selling”. It would be hard to find a trade partner who could trade you something that you can use this year, but you would gain net organizational value.

  22. Pablo is such a waste. Where is the “Juan Yepez for Matt Adams” trade?

  23. Panda is 1-for-24 since June 1, a sterling .042 average (and since his only hit is a single, a .042 slugging percentage). His OBP is .179 in that span. Sadly, he’s washed.

  24. @26 Sadly, I don’t think we can count on Soroka for the future. Touki, Muller, Anderson, Fried is a pretty good top 4. I’m still not convinced Ynoa’s 1st half is “real”. If so, then great. I heard Davidson had a big drop in spin rate after the ban on sticky stuff, plus the injury. Lots of questions. I do think Wilson will make a good middle reliever. I hope they move him to a relief role this season and leave him there.

    I hope we all aren’t getting ahead of ourselves on Touki but he has looked great. The problem is that the mlb team doesn’t have a pitching coach who can help these guys if they start having mechanical issues.

  25. Yep, sadly, the Panda is done. Demeritte is killing it in AAA. He could play some 3B with Riley in LF. Almonte to pinch hit on those days. Would make the team more well rounded. For some reason they refuse to admit Riley isn’t very good defensively.

  26. I’d be willing to accept that this is who Chris Martin is if it means that this is who Touki is.

  27. Thanks, Chris. (This is yet another example of how the W-L stat is garbage; if the final is 2-1, there should be discretion to give the L to the guy who entered and promptly allowed a dinger after the starter went 7 innings with 1 ER.)

  28. @28 Right, timo, thanks. That makes seven good SPs with no new FAs.

    Just enough offense to lose close again.

  29. I don’t think a Sandoval-sized Tinkerbell would have enough pixie dust to make Panda a starter.

  30. One interesting note especially supporting Touki. No walks by either team in this game.

  31. @44 If Braves season’s were albums, that’s the title of the 2021 edition right there.

  32. All pretty much predictable. Forever this has been the M O of the BRAVES. Milwaukee and Atlanta.
    Please adapt the DH next year. The Braves have the perfect person for the position. Plus can sub at third and left field. Infrequently at the most.
    Eight innings of great pitching by two men. And of course one inning of shitting the sheets by one man.
    All typical of this years team.
    Now four out of five is needed. Odds please.

  33. Back in my Navy days, my last duty station was Fort Meade, where I, for want of a better word, supervised Army bad boys painting barracks. I was part of the Naval Security Group and probably the worst Chinese Mandarin linguist in the fleet, so watching folks paint buildings was the best use of my talents.

    I had a lot of free time, free room and board and no clothing costs to speak of. This old country boy was rich, or so I thought; so I went car shopping.

    And what a beauty I found! A 1967 Austin Healey Mark III 3000. She was everything I had every wanted in a car, and I looked fine rolling along with the top down.

    It was the rolling along part that gave me trouble. The Healey couldn’t stay on the road. As soon as I got one expensive thing fixed, another more expensive one broke. That car emptied both my bank account and my patience. Today’s game reminded me of that beast.

    Touki was great, but the offense broke. What an exasperating season this has been, and what a pitiful offense we have! Even at our best, we play five or six major leaguers. Even in the NL East, that flies no flags.

    Too bad I am addicted to this ridiculous team. I despair, but I listen faithfully.

  34. Coop,
    I had one and loved it.
    Nola’s ERA is mystifying.
    Maybe the Braves have a good one. Many more starts are needed.
    A small group of men (and women) who have in common no ambition beyond the time to discuss matters of interest but little importance.
    John Steinback

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