Great, great, great win. But two questions? Do you take Lowe out after 8? And, if so, do you bring in Gonzalez? For me, the Lowe thing is defensible, but not a slam dunk. But you don’t bring in Gonzo who has said (and shown) on many occasions that he doesn’t pitch well in non-Save situations. I was really losing my mind in the bottom of the 9th.
I was watching on the net and cant get the live game until tomorrow on mlb.com….so I dont know the flow…but was Schafer Andrewesque, and by that I mean youngest player to hit HR in WS Andrewesque not Double Cheezeburger with gravy and strike out Andrewesque? I got wood from reading the line in the pop up window, thats all I can say. I cant imagine it live…
4 run lead, maybe Bobby thinks he has more risk with a tired Lowe than a bullpen and just wants to put the nail in the coffin on a game hes pretty sure he can win. So defensible, not a slam dunk, exactly.
And yes, I admit panic and rising bile..when they got a run and a baserunner and a walk. But I liked the 2 strikeouts to end it. Ice ice baby. Ever the optimist..
Steve, Gonzo had a lot to prove in his first outing after insisting he would turn it on during a real game, and not look like his spring self. So, I don’t think this was a typical non-save situation as far as adrenaline, concentration, and all that goes.
And, not that I think Bobby’s thinking was layered like this, but it might have been smart to make his first outing happen with a four-run cushion, knowing he was gonna be a bit Napoleonic about it.
I’d have cried if Howard had jacked him though. Oh, man…
Bubd – I agree that Gonzo had a lot to prove which is why I don’t agree with putting him in there. I hear ya on the non-typical, non-save situation given that it was opening night and all but still …. I believe it was a situation in which he was set up to fail. How many times does he need to tell us (and, more importantly, show us) that he doesn’t thrive in non-save situations? Can you imagine if he had blown the save, lost the game, f’ed up Lowe’s brilliant game, erased Schafer’s and Frenchy’s big night, etc? I’m getting all wound up just thinking about it again.
Will – you’ll love the hell out of the game when you get to see it. Those first two innings with the home runs are just euphoric. And Lowe was a wonder to watch. And we had great defense in the field (except for some Frenchy unfortunateness). It was an absolute pleasure (but cover your eyes for some of the bottom of the 9th – it was gut wrenching).
I think putting Gonzalez in the game was the right thing to do. You have to have faith that he and the rest of the bullpen can hold a four-run lead, even in that joke of a baseball park in Philly. Why not let him get out there, face those lefthanders, and shake off his bad spring. I was sweating it just like the rest of you guys, but you know what, he didn’t give up the homer to Howard, he struck him out, and that might be as important as everything else that went on last night. This bullpen has a long way to go to make up for last season, and this was a start, albeit a shaky one.
One more week of positive Curt, then it’s back to killing everyone.
It was a great game. Nice to see Frenchy and Shaefer get off to a good start – only 25 more homers to match last year’s outfield total. I hope Bobby does not take this to mean that he can sit back and wait for the homer – need to play small ball to win with this team and I think we have the team that can do it.
I would have left Lowe in. He was at 97 pitches and he was owning the Phils at that point. Didn’t look tired at all. Also, his Opening Day jitters were behind him, as opposed to Gonzo who had to come in and settle down before getting through the inning. I think that getting the win at this point was much more important than getting people playing time or anything else. On the other hand, it was classic Bobby. Glad it worked out.
I also agree that I hope the homerun outburst doesn’t make Bobby ignore the small ball. We will need it more than ever this year.
I agree with Hammy and Mike. Please, please, please don’t let Bobby think that this time will survive waiting around on a 3 run homer. Small ball .. .let’s embrace that concept. If McCann or Frenchy (or Shaefer) hit the occasional long ball- -added bonus.
I also tend to agree with Curt’s comment here. Gonzo did eventually get out of the 9th only giving up 1. Could have been much worse and the first loss in his first outing of ’09. It’s like Curtis also said in the podcast. The opener against the Nats last year was a bad harbinger for the 08 campaign. Maybe this year’s strong performance, and getting the monkey off Gonzo’s back so to speak, will benefit them this season.
That being said, I still almost threw up a few times during the Howard at bat.
Last point. Does anyone else think that Jordan S. is a dead ringer for Hermey the Misfit Elf from the clamation Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Christmas special they show each year on CBS? “I don’t want to be an elf, I want to be a DENTIST”. Or, in this case . . . “I want to play CF for the BRAVES!”
Enjoy the podcast and site. Keep up the good work.
Yuk. But lets look at the bright side. We won two of three, we might have some power and we have some strong starting pitching. Can this be an excuse to get Hanson up and put him in the bullpen…remind me why we cant do that. Screw the arbitration clock, lets win some baseball games.
The short answer is that they want Hanson getting regular work. As a starter in Gwinnett, he is guaranteed to start and pitch every 4 or 5 days. As a reliever, he isn’t guaranteed of anything. And he is a starter, not a reliever, so they don’t really want to pitch him that way. At least not until the post season…………
I don’t think he will take Glavine’s spot, if Glavine is pitching and healthy, but at the end of the year he will get some chances to start. No way we make it through the season with these guys making every start. In the post season, anything goes, so you just want the best arms possible. If you lose, you’re season is over obviously, so to have him ready to come in out of the pen would be a nice addition. Much like the Rays used David Price last year. And I’m still not convinced that Jo Jo isn’t the first call. I guess it will depend on Gwinnett’s rotation and who pitched, etc.