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Usually reliable, Mike Gonzalez has been a beacon for youth and excellence in relief for the Braves this year. But though he’s had some outstanding performances coming out of an aging bullpen with more holes in it than my grandpa’s underwear; he couldn’t get the job done.
You’ve got to love his competitive spirit. This photo I found after yesterday’s loss on the Braves’ website shows the anger and frustration we’ve all been feeling about this season. But you have to like it when you’re sending someone out who just wants to win. It doesn’t matter if there are no playoffs to talk about and we’re battling to stay out of last place. The guy just wants to win baseball games. And despite yesterday’s anticlimactic sac fly walk off for the Fishies, I’d rather have Gonzo pitch any day of the week over the Dessens, Tavarez, Nunez group we’ve been leading to the slaughter lately. Though what choice do we have?
You look at Mike’s numbers and you really can’t complain. A perfect save conversion rate for 2008 with 9 ER’s in 22 IP, and 24 K’s. Getting even one save seems like an accomplish on this team.
Rounding out the recap, Hampton started this one and went 6 decent (not impressive) innings allowing three runs and getting 2 K’s. Bennett pitched the 7th and 8th with a tie and kept the old farts from having to give up their mandatory runs in relief.
In yesterday’s lineup, we saw Frenchy, Anderson, and Brandon Jones have multi hit showings but Prado and McCann finally sent up goose eggs against Johnson (who pwned us last week).
Again, Anderson rebounded from an 0-5 day in DC to go 3-5 with an RBI and bring his BA back up to .326. And, Mr. Anderson got himself a stolen base (2). Call me foolish if you will but I think this guy could be our centerfielder.
Chipper didn’t do much to improve his chances with a 1-4 day. He dropped one point to .358 and Pujols dropped a digit to .363 with a 1-3 day against Arizona.
I’m gonna give yesterday’s game ball to Josh Anderson for the great Labor Day he had in My-am-ee. In the losing effort he got 3 hits with an RBI and a stolen base which has been a bit of rarity for the Atlanta Braves.