Easy there Curt…take a deep breath…place your 5 fingers around your favorite beer and chug. Wow. I don’t know where I am on the spectrum. I’m stoked about the series with the Dodgers but so afraid of more heartbreaking games with zero offense. After we play the Nats maybe I’ll feel more inclined to pick a number.
Great show guys, I gotta say I’m a 6.5 on the Postseason Hope Meter. If we can solve the Nats, & put a proper beating on the Fish, then I’ll be an 8. I ain’t worried about Philadelphia though, IMO they went from having no steady & dependable pitchers to one. I don’t think Pedro will be able to do much for the Phillies. Will he bolster their rotation? Yes. But not enough to win the division. Their offense is finally starting to lose it’s luster…that compounded w/ a shaky rotation & a fair bullpen (at best)…they don’t have a chance. I think the Marlins have a better chance at taking the division than the Phillies. If our Bravos do what they set out to do against their division rivals…than they’ll be in great shape, & I wouldn’t be surprised if it came down to the Rockies & the Marlins for the Wild Card.
To be honest, I’m still weary about having our inter-division games being called by retarded & blind umpires. If we have another game of bad calls by fools, I hope Frank Wren, John Schulerholtz, & Bobby Cox all call Bud Selig & read him the riot act.
I think we learned from the Glavine situation that minor league starts mean nothing. He will get a nice welcome back to the majors against the Cubs. He pitched well in the WBC, but I’m real curious to see if he has anything left. I think counting on him only boosts our chances. I’d rather count on Tim Hudson.
I’m with Chris. Not cuz he’ll be the old Pedro, but cuz he’ll be better than Moyer.
But watching the Braves play good ball lately has reminded me that I really DO care more about playing good games than making the playoffs. It’s so fun to watch them click together and make exciting plays.
And this isn’t just me trying to feel okay about not making it (if we don’t). I’m just genuinely reminded that good baseball in the middle of the season can be pretty magical.
I agree, Curt. Pedro struck out 11 in his last start, though. Glavine wasn’t doing that. We’ll know soon enough whether he has anything. I haven’t seen any scouting reports on Pedro and I’d love to know what they are. The ones on Smoltz were fairly accurate in predicting his ML performance.
I’m happy to count on Hudson replacing Acosta, but that’s about it.
Bub – I had to fight the urge to correct you, but I felt like I’d be one of those DOB blog jerks if I did it.
I have little faith in Pedro as well. He hasn’t really dominated since 2005. That’s a lot of years, especially in your late 30′s as an athlete. I predict he goes 4 2/3 and gives up 5 runs Wednesday night.
And I can’t get on board with the “it’s just fun to be playing good baseball right now” thing. It’s REALLY fun because of what it’s propelling us toward (for me, anyway). If we were the Nats, 40 games under .500, and went on this 8 game streak, I’d still be pretty damned bummed.
Did anybody see Bill Hohn’s call during the Dodgers game last night. It was a play which Mark Loretta (playing first) mishandled a ball and stepped off the bag to retrieve and Bill Hohn called the runner out. And then by no surprise ejected teh manager arguing the call. This guy needs to be fired!
And Steve, if you can’t appreciate excellent play in the most elegant sport in history, regardless of post season implications, then I’m going to have to make elitist-sounding quips at you until I realize I probably need to playoffs to be happy, too (takes about three days).
Bub – you’ve forced some soul searching here in the ol’ comments section for me. And here’s the thing for me. My fanaticism around the Braves is absolutely tied to overall success and potential post-season games. In fact, I can’t think of anything I love more (family/friends excluded) then sitting down to watch a Braves playoff game. So, while there was some good Braves baseball played last September, I didn’t really care much about it. To put it another way, if I had to choose between watching all 9 innings of tonight’s game against the Nats with all its momentum and corner-turning implications or a game 7 of the NLCS that did not include the Braves (a game 7 that would potentially provide a much higher level of all-around play and intensity), I would pick tonight’s game without hesitation. Bring on the elitism!
I have to agree with Steve. I want the Braves to win and win BIG! And if they make it to the playoffs I want them to make it to the WS and then I’ll want them to WIN! I wish I could just enjoy watching them play good ball. But the whole time my gut is twisting with every pitch because it’s so important for them to win so many games. Curt, 3 sounds much more like you. I was beginning to wondering if C in B had taken over your blogging account. Just don’t drop your beer.
Steve, I agree with a lot of what’s in your sentiment. But your argument and mine aren’t exactly meeting full on.
I don’t mean that my enjoyment of baseball being played well has nothing to do with it being MY TEAM playing it well. My whole sentiment is “look at my team playing like this!” Like you, I choose tonight’s game over a great game 7 between other teams, even if it’s the Big Red Machine incarnate.
But the choice for me (in my own soul searching) is whether or not the little number in the Games Back column is going to dictate my excitement completely. Maybe we dug a hole too deep. Maybe Frenchy/Bobby/Jordan/Kelly’s early play took it out of reach. This team right here and right now is pretty awesome (still need a RF bat). Of course the games back column has SOME power in the equation. But not all. It won’t break my heart if we play as well as we have since the ASB and fall short. I’ll look at the year with some satisfaction. Will it be a complete bummer for you?
Bub- it would definitely NOT be a complete bummer for me if we keep playing like we have. Great ball and being part of the equation going down the stretch would be enormous fun, and immensely satisfying for me this season. My only point was that if we were 40 games under .500, 20+ games out and then went on an 8 game winning streak, it would not mean that much for me (short of had we jettisoned the entire team and were starting to play a bunch of kids). Maybe I’m just repeating myself, but my enjoyment of the team is definitely tied to some realistic opportunity at the post season.
In other news – great game! Way to keep the intensity up. A convincing performance by everyone tonight (it’s bottom 8 for me on my DVR, I hope I’m not jinxing anything). Chipper’s swing on that homer was an absolute thing of beauty. And Ryan Church does not suck.
So glad Church had a good night since that other guy hit a homer for the Mets. I’ve decided I’m no longer going to tweet during games. All I said was “Go Cubbies” and look what happened. The baseball gods do not approve of my tweets. As I type that sentence the Astros score in the 9th to tie it at 8. That’s it…no more tweets during games.
Kinda quiet park, sadly, and I don’t think the fans were fully into it. Lemmings as often we usually are, “Make Some Noise,” writ large on the Jumbotron always seems to do the trick. When Bobby got the ball from Hanson, he received strong applause and Standing O and did give a tip o’ the cap – very slight – but definitely there. That said, the opening half-inning felt like four innings and I was a might worried ’bout that boy.
Poor Frank missed a few good plays while trying to convince me that some of my player opinions are dead wrong…so karma’s a b#*ch for him, since I’m steadfastly right. …and clearly Diaz knew I’d be sitting high atop right field, since that’s where he “chose” to be this evening.
I’ll be sitting in or about the same place tonight hoping for a little more of the same. Go Braves!!
I neglected to mention: GREAT to see Infante back.
One of my co-workers just said something bizarre that she thinks she overheard on 680 The Fan about Kotchman coming BACK?? LaRoche didn’t play last night and I checked the Sox site and Kotchman didn’t play last night either. Whaaaa? Bizarre-o World that must be a misunderstanding/mishearing.
Anne – I can’t imagine that’s true. One of the many reasons the Braves made the trade in the first place was to get rid of Casey’s contract. No way they pick him up again. And with Infante back we have no need for another infield back-up (especially one that only plays 1st base).
I could not help but smile when I read your mention of the player opinion berating you took from Ballpark last night. I’ve been on the wrong end of too many of those. Next time you see him, mention that you think Chipper is a hick. It will guarantee a 30 minute talking to from Frank.
Oh, Steve: we were having that conversation AS HE HIT HIS HOME RUN. Frank tossed me a, “showed YOU,” look, and I said even hicks can hit home runs and I’ll still never like the guy. Frank suggests I think he’s a jock, not a hick. I DO think he’s a jock…AND a hick. I then offered that perhaps Chipper will win me over in his retirement years.
The rest of the night was spent discussing lazy (and perpetually solitary – he never hangs out with anyone else, even during the National Anthem) G.A. and his (my opinion) lack of oomph out there. I was informed that he’s a better fielder than Diaz, at which point I suggested we take it indoors and come to fisticuffs. I’m 100% sure Frank is correct, if only G.A. would GIVE 100%.
Frank’s bringing his nephew tonight, so it’ll be two against one. I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t hit a girl. PRETTY sure…
Anne – That’s hilarious that you were actually getting berated about Chipper. By the way, tell Frank that he’s INSANE that GA is better in the field than Diaz (and I’m not just saying that because of your school girl crush on him). GA takes some horrendous routes to flyballs. Just horrendous. Frank has cleary heard the phrase, “professional hitter” one too many time about GA and he’s been downright seduced by it. Have you met Frank’s nephew before? Super nice guy. Send my regards.
I knew Lake back in the day, but haven’t seen him since he left King Plow. I’ll absolutely say hello. Bub, if you’re unaware of King Plow, please just file it away with your PG-13 items. It’s really not filthy at all, but I like you thinking it is.
What a game! And what a joy this line up has become. Even without McLouth it’s strong as hell. To be able to have Esco, GA and LaRoche in the bottom half. What a difference a few months makes. We’ll be tied for 2nd after tonight, people. Bring on the Phils.
Somebody get Curt a Valium. I like how the Braves are off tonight and the Phillies have to play. I’m hoping for a very long, using a ton of pitchers type of defeat for the Phils. Are we scared of Pedro?
I am personally not at all scared of Pedro. After all, he threw only 5 innings gave up 7 hits and three runs. He also had only one 1-2-3 inning which was against the 6, 7, and 8 hitters. 65% of pitches were strikes which is not great, but solid. Yet, even I can not quiet the little voice in the back of my head saying, “C’mon it is Pedro Martinez”.
Something has been off with Hamels all season. It’s late in the season for that to change. Here’s what Sept 1 should look like:
Lee being excellent
Hamels continuing to give up hits in bunches but hanging in there at .500
Blanton pitching like Blanton, which is respectable at #3
Happ fading badly and needing to be rested
Pedro – who knows?
C in B – I hope you’re right about Happ fading. On the one hand he’s already pitched 4x the innings he’s ever pitched. On the other hand he pitched a complete game shut-out 9 days ago. I’d feel better if we saw signs of the fade already. And Pedro doesn’t really scare me either. He threw some great pitches those first four innings and then become really pedestrian in the 5th. I just don’t believe he will get stronger as the season goes on. But, to quote you, “who knows.”
And Bub – I am with you 1000%. There is a real swagger and confidence with this team that we’ve not seen in a long time. My excitement level for this series is ridiculous.
I’m tempted to talk about my excitement over this series but I always seem to jinx the Braves when I do so you will all just have to read my mind. No doubt I will tell you all how it played out just as I predicted…in my head.
Bub – wouldn’t that be, “Brad Lidge is more nervous than DOB alone with Tim Hudson.” And yeah, how awful was that beer throwing incident? And even more crazy given that they carted off the wrong guy. Unbelievable. We may not show up to games and we may be more interested in the Kiss-Cam here in Atlanta, but we’d not do something that bush league.
Steve, Happ pitched 135 innings last year, 118 the year before. He’s now at 121. The fade is coming.
To put that into context, in 2006 and 2007, JJ pitched 140 and 142 innings respectively. In 2008, he hit a wall in mid August, pitched poorly and had to be shut down. That wall happened at about 140 innings. The same kind of thing happened to a number of the Mets pitchers a few years ago and led to their collapse.
The innings are tougher on the ML level, too. It’s like running an uphill marathon when the most you ever did in your training was 15 miles.
Yeah, I was gonna say Hudson, but Terrence is the Griffey Jr. guy I like to pick on most. And I actually kind of take DOB’s side in the Hudson battle, though I would have like to’ve seen a smidge of regret from Mr. O’Brien on that one. Or on any one. Crap, my issues are showing again.
Go BRAVES!!! The Braves that have been simmering since the NY-BOS week are ready to EXPLODE!!
C in B – I love it. And thanks for the clarification on the innings. I only looked at his ML innings, I didn’t think about the minors. I hope you’re right man – the timing of his 140 innings (presumably the start of September) would be very, very fortuitous.
Ok…I’ve said it before and must say it again, Bub, you are freakin hilarious! Steve and Curt, will you be wearing matching ABT shirts of some obnoxious color and carrying foam fingers? If not I’m not watching. Well, I’ll watch but it won’t be as fun.
Since the baseball gods hate me I can’t comment on the game until after but I just have to ask…do you think Curt and Steve are participating in the wave while JJ’s trying to concentrate? I bet Steve’s sitting very quietly while Curt’s jumping up and down flailing his arms to and fro.
Now’s a good time for Curt to come true on his promise to pour beer on Victorino. I’m waiting for him to throw the beer or just run on the field in the buff. Steve will promptly point and shake his head along with all the other fans and say, “who is that guy.”
First and foremost, and more importantly than this painful, painful loss – Curt and I both despise the wave. Let the record show.
This one has me very, very down (and not insignificantly worried about Soriano – that’s now 5 runs in his last 4 appearances, 2 HRs in his last 4 appearances, ERs in 3 of his last 4 appearances). Ugh.
I take some solace in the fact that we mounted an impressive attempt in the bottom of the 9th and that Victorino made two stunningly good plays at the wall. But… for all my (our) optimism and hope and good times this afternoon on the board we’re 6 freaking games out of 1st. This was a painful two game swing. Dammit. Good night. Get ‘em tomorrow.
HALLELUJAH IS RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!! We sure needed that one. I gotta give props to Victorino, he’s an S.O.B. of a CF. Like Skip Caray & Joe Simpson were saying last night, if it was Citizens Bank Park we were playing in…we would’ve had two or 3 homers. Who ever said it (on here in the last podcast I think) that Sunday is the most important…they couldn’t be more right. I like our chances with sending Vasquez out there.
CHIP Caray, BluesMan. RIP, Skip. My favorite curmudgeonly comment from Skip in his last year: “Welcome back, folks…the 7th inning brought to you by Golden Moon Casino.” (pause) “…though we’d still have a 7th inning…even if they didn’t.”
Thanks goodness we pulled it out today. I’d have been absolutely beside myself if we were 7 out of 1st today. Lots of great stuff in the game, especially EOF and Gonzo getting out of the jams they were in. Sunday, Sunday, Sunday.
If this game gets rained out I might have a heart attack. I have all this angst and excitement left over from sitting through a 4 hour rain delay at Wrigley to see the game get ppd. Please oh Please dont get rained out I need to see a Bravos win tonight!
Wiley – there are so few open days left on the calendar know that they’ll stay as long as it takes to get this one in. Also – I live 4 miles from the stadium and it’s not raining at all at my house – it’s got to let up.