Man it Pours, Braves 3, Shakeytown 5

Got on board a westbound 747 (not anymore, Delta charter of some type),

Didn’t think before deciding what to do (this one goes out to Snitker on why he pitched Touki one inning Sunday and started Smyly last night. Really!!!)

All that talk of opportunity (well, when you get your ass kicked, that isn’t a very good use of opportunity) TV breaks (we need a break from Chip), and movies (will “Braves 2021” end up a great finish or a crappy one).

It rang true, sure rang true.

It seems it never rains in Southern California. Seems I’ve often heard that kind of talk before. It never rains in California, but girl, don’t they warn you? IT POURS, MAN IT POURS.

In June 1991 my wife and I were in Ventura spending the night at a 20 story on beach hotel. At about 8:30 the next morning, I was awakened by something like someone pushing the foot of the bed with a hard shove. I said ‘Earthquake!.” My wife said “It’s not.” Went to the bathroom and turned on the TV on the way by. By the time I was coming out the commentator said “This just in to our Los Angeles newsroom, there has been a major earthquake in the Los Angeles area.” The next day’s LA Times Ventura County supplement led with the second story (bottom of page 1 of county section) that it had been the first day with measurable rainfall in June (.1 of an inch) in about 17 years. Any place where earthquakes are more common than rain is not for me.

For a LONG long time, Dodger stadium was usually a “home run suppressor.” This seemed to be very associated with how quickly it cools off in the evening. Well, after years of the Dodger org developing strong fly ball hitters, there are a lot more home runs there than formerly.

So we are kind of “frowny” this morning because Drew Smyly gave up 4 home runs in 4 and 2 / 3rds innings (and why can’t the standard be set at first third is .3, second one is .7 and then back to even numbers. Is it that hard to maintain decimal discipline?). 4 of those solo shots. Then, we made a good comeback, with 3 solo shots also. But Snit, if you use Smyly and he gets bombed, why do you use Luke Jackson? I would also say the same thing about Martin, but lately he hasn’t been on top of his game, so maybe that made sense. And, the offense absolutely didn’t “hibernate.” They came back again and again. But it “poured 7 home runs in one game.

Braves need to win a few on this road trip to solidify the division. They have a lot of fight. They now seem to be rounding into form on talent. Just a little better thought process on who stays on the roster and who pitches when would help a lot.

72 thoughts on “Man it Pours, Braves 3, Shakeytown 5”

  1. Well written, cliff. Thank you.

    It is not lose and go home time. We play again today. Isn’t it wonderful? Go Braves.

  2. thanks, cliff.

    ububba….Yes, confidence, a fickle Lady. Therein, perhaps, lies the source of our hope, next time. As Jon S would say.

    Jonathan…has there ever been a September(not quite) game between two Division leaders(one actually) where a starting pitcher gives up a home run in each of the first four innings, all on fastballs when he’s there for his off speed stuff?

    Impossible question I know, my apologies, but had to know what lurked so I appeal to your consummate elasticity to dig something up that may not pass formal judgment but will somewhat soften the horror of watching that? As near as you are able to get it please. Thank you.

  3. At the end of the day, the result of the game was more or less what you’d expect on paper for an Urias-Smyly matchup. What was good to see was the fact that the team clawed their way back into it and damn near won the thing in the ninth. They didn’t roll over and play dead, and the bullpen was actually terrific. I still associate Jesse Chavez with his terrible first go-round in Atlanta, but boy he’s been a find for us this year.

    The Dodgers were better last night, but that’s largely because of the starting pitching mismatch. Bring on Max vs. Max! I ain’t afraid of no ghosts.

  4. I think we’ve reached a point in the season where we know what Smyly is and it’s definitely not a postseason starter. Also, it seems wise to run the rotation with Morton, Fried, Ian, Ynoa, and Touki. With Touki, there’s real upside and potential to become a real force down the stretch and in the playoffs. With Smyly, we’ve seen the same thing over and over and that is a 5th starter that struggles to get through 5 innings. IMO, transferring him to a 1-2 inning reliever and let that velo ride a bit seems too easy.

  5. @4, @5 and it gives you the right/left tandem with Tomlin and Smyly in those inning eater long relief roles…lol

  6. 4 and 5

    I agree, but do we think Smyly should go in Colorado, hate to see the Coors effect mess up some promising trends for Touki.

  7. @7 I think if Smyly is goign to start in Colorado you almost treat him like an “opener” and have him go through the lineup one time and maybe try and finish the inning the lineup rolls over. After that go to Touki to get through a couple of innings and maybe that gets us into the 6th or 7th when we can use the normal bullpen rotation.

  8. Next 2 games are going to be brutal, Buehler and Scherzer are both on fire right now… but at least we know Scherzer from having to play him in the division so often! Maybe that’ll help us out Wednesday night. At least we’ll have 4 against the Rockies later in the week, if we don’t win against the Dodgers we need to sweep the Rockies and take 2 against the Giants. Harper and the “Fillies” are awful close to closing that gap.

    I sure agree about displaying innings pitched as a decimal being really annoying! Boy, trying to work with those in a spreadsheet would be a pain in the butt. 3.1 + 4.2 = 8.0… awful.

  9. @9 Michael, as someone wrote here before a couple of days ago. The Rockies are basically the Dodgers at home (43-22 record). It will be a tough series. It is a tough road trip.

  10. Thanks, Cliff. Your recap is better than the Albert Hammond song, but now I can’t get that song out of my head.

  11. With the Giants having to put both Johnny Cueto and Alex Wood on the COVID list at the same time, it’s clearer than ever why, especially this season, the Braves don’t seem willing to allow any potentially competitive starters to atrophy while in a mop-up role.

  12. #10
    Yup, just don’t get swept in either series — don’t come home 1-5 or so. Don’t forget, the Phils pretty much play the dregs of MLB from here on out.

    “It Never Rains in Southern California”
    As a 9-year-old, I bought the 45-rpm vinyl single of that one-hit wonder. I think it cost 34 cents at Miller’s Discount Store on Victory Drive in Columbus — three singles for a dollar!

    I forget the other two 45s I bought that day, but it was probably something like “Crocodile Rock” & “You’re So Vain.” The early ’70s sure had some earwormy radio hits.

    A note of trivia: Albert Hammond’s son is the guitar player for The Strokes.

  13. 15 With the deferrals they will be paying Lindor until 2041, the year I turn 64. The Mets are a gift that keeps on giving.

  14. BTW, there’s a lone Indians fan in my office, which is full of Mets fans.

    The Tribe supporter was asked today: “Will you take Lindor back?”

    Guffaws were heard down the hallway.

  15. @19 – He’s at least on a long list of people down at Gwinnett that I would have rather seen pinch hit in the 9th than Vogt. #ranoutofpositionplayersagain

  16. @2: Michael Blazek for Milwaukee on July 27th, 2017 was the only starting pitcher ever to give up 6 home runs in the first 3 innings of a game. The Brewers at that time were 54-50 in 2nd place 1.5 games back and the Nationals were leading the NL East at 61-39.

    14 pitchers have given up 5 homers in the first 3 innings. I didn’t look at all 14 in detail; lots of them are in the first 4 months of the season or against really bad teams, but on September 9th, 2019, the 95-50 Houston Astros slammed the 84-60 Oakland Athletics 15-0. Mike Fiers gave up 5 homers and 9 runs in the 1st inning. They’re in the same division of course, but Oakland at the time was a wild card team.

  17. At least we get to see the Phillies/ Nationals game. Looking good for the Beltway Crew, 5 to 2 Nats going into the 5th

  18. 1) I’m kind of a night owl, so I like these West Coast games.
    2) Given all that West Coast teams have to deal with as far as having to deal with virtually every national TV game getting scheduled to cater to Eastern time, I’d say the least we can do is take a week’s worth of 10 p.m. games a year without complaining too much about it.

  19. @25: hallelujah, brother.

    It tickles me that Rob has become a geezer under my watchful eye: from jorts-wearing gator boy to get off my lawn, Dodgers. Tempus fugit, the moving finger writes and all that stuff.

  20. If it makes you cranks feel any better, the Dodgers and Giants used to start these games at 10:40 to 10:45, which is like…almost 11. They’ve at least pushed it back toward 10 for you guys.

  21. Ugh…not quite the same as last year’s NLCS with the short wall, but I’m pretty sick of Mookie Betts robbing home runs from us.

  22. I’m glad I’m retired …..the late night games don’t bother me as much. Best of all, I will be able to watch any stupid middle of the day playoff games.

  23. Walker Buehler? More like Home Runner Buehler!

    @32 Hear hear! I also get to watch baseball everyday with my current arrangement. Sucks that there’s an offseason…

  24. Morton, you’re up two strikes on Smith now, but fewer (admittedly otherwise excellent) fastballs middle middle please.

  25. This is teetering towards Episode territory (although Charlie is getting squeezed a bit).

  26. Lose the ace, lose the power-hitting outfielder to off-field malfeasance that ought to ensure he never plays again, lose the catcher for three months, lose an emerging young starter for nearly three months because of his own stupidity, lose the straw that stirs the drink to a torn ACL and now lose the table-setter? This year is just not meant to be.

  27. Someone please educate me. I played baseball from ages 4-18 and, for the life of me, I don’t remember too many occasions of a batter fouling a ball off themselves. It seems like some batters do it very frequently in the majors. I mean, Ozzie seems to do it all the time. Why?

  28. I hope it’s just an awkward knock on the funny bone. Or maybe a bone bruise. I sure hope he didn’t get “knee-capped”.

  29. @49, not sure, but I seem to remember that Kevin Brown used to generate a lot of fouls off batters’ legs and feet with his hard sinker.

  30. i’m sorry i love Riley as much as the next one, but Scott Rolen is not a relevant comparison

  31. Chip keeps saying Riley has Troy Glaus’s body but Scott Rolen’s athleticism. (I see I’m not the only poster skeptical of the latter comparison.) If we’re not limiting ourselves to third basemen, at the plate Riley reminds me of Klesko.

  32. Scott Rolen was the best defensive 3B of my lifetime (1984). I’m pretty confident in that claim? I’m less confident, but still reasonably confident, that he’s in roughly the top five all time defensively.

    I love Riley, I’ve been wanting the Braves to let him grow for awhile, and I’m glad they agreed with me. Athletically in the field, he is not in the same universe as Scott Rolen.

  33. This bullpen is fine and dandy against the dregs, but against quality, it still ain’t close to good enough.

  34. Don’t look now, but the Phillies are en fuego. (easy schedule helps)

    Fortunately this is still a one run game.

  35. “Normally reliable Atlanta bullpen.” Chip, what team have you been watching this year?

  36. If Albies has to miss any time at all the Braves will have to make a roster move because they don’t have anyone else to play middle IF other than Dansby and Adrianza.

    Rusty might get his wish for a 13 man pitching staff.

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