So, as I was saying…
Actually, I want to say thanks to AtlantaBaseballTalk for allowing me to take a small break while I grieved over the loss of Dan Uggla’s talent and Brian McCann’s ability to hit something other than a pop up. Over the last couple of months, I watched our beloved Braves have their ups and downs. Andrelton Simmons’ fantastic play, followed by his injury. Brandon Beachy’s fantastic play, followed by injury. Tommy Hanson’s fantastic…oh, wait, my bad. So on and so forth. The Braves have looked like “world beaters” one week and have smelled like expired “egg beaters” the next. And all the while, our Bravos have kept close to the Nationals and lived in the top spot in the wildcard. During this time of grief/observation, what has hit me is that old saying that may actually not apply anymore. “Good pitching beats good hitting any day”. We sure about that? Ask the Phillies how far they got during the short (and not so sweet) tenure of their dominating rotation of the last couple of years. And we ALL know how many (or how NOT many) titles the Braves won with their stellar rotation in the 1990s. Now, the “pitching greatness” du jour is the Tampa Bay Rays. The so-called experts say, “You don’t want to face the Rays in the playoffs” or “the LAST team you want to see is the Rays, with all that pitching”. Really? These are the same bozos that were AMAZED when Chris Carpenter blew away the post season last year. So what we really need to ask is, does great pitching beat great hitting OR does HOT pitching beat great hitting?
Think about “hot versus good”. Or even, “hot versus great”. Do we look at an attractive woman or man and say, “Wow…now that’s good”. No, we don’t. When you want to really compliment your significant other, saying “you look great, honey” is ok, but it doesn’t inspire. Tell them they’re HOT and wait for the reaction. I promise, you’ll like it. And so will they. Hot or streaky ALWAYS beats consistency and good. It’s all about the timing of said hotness or streakiness. Think of the ballpark. Think of the vendors at the ballpark. The ones selling hotdogs. What do they say?
HOT DOGS! Get your red hot HOT DOGS! Get ‘em while there HOT!
Not “get ‘em while they’re consistent”, “get ‘em during an extended timeframe where you can expect continuous quality”, “I’ve tasted one recently and they are pretty good on the whole”. You want them to be hot. It gets you excited to have a ballpark dog. It gives certain glamour to the dog itself (I know…I know, but roll with me on this). The Braves seem to be limping into the post season again offensively. But the pitching has been hot. Real hot. Kris Medlin has been as good as anybody in MLB. Mike Minor could actually demand a trade right now and wouldn’t be laughed out of Turner Field. Tim Hudson is solid as usual. Craig Kimbrel looks better than ever…when he gets a chance to close. Now if we could only fool Tommy Hanson into thinking the season is over and have him not come to the Ted to pitch…we’d be in business We’re winning a bunch of games where Atlanta is scoring only 1-2-3 runs. As one of my Twitter follower said the other night “another steak sauce score for the Braves = A-1” (because when you look at the score on TV, that’s how it’s listed in the upper left hand corner of the screen). If our pitching remains hot, we could go deep into October. So get your red hot Braves pitching and “relish” the 2012 season magic (couldn’t help myself).
For more of my shenanigans, follow me on Twitter at @YourDailyVinnie. Thanks!