Monday, July 2, 2012

Nationals @ Braves: Game 3 Recap

I was worried the heat would get to Hudson, and it was obvious that it did. Huddy came out completely flat and had one of his worst outings of the year. That's bad timing considering that it happened against the division leaders. The only game that was worse in recent memory was another home game against the Nats where Huddy game up 7 runs in a loss. He's not good against the Nationals this year, and that bodes poorly for us in the long haul. The Braves bats could never really recover from Huddy's bad start, and every though several players hit the ball decently we still went 1-8 with RISP. Also, Bourn had the worst fielding day he will probably have all season.

There was nobody at this game, and I don't blame them. It was an awful day to play baseball. It was an awful day to do anything but sit inside with the AC on, fanning yourself with a newspaper, with a bag of frozen peas across your forehead. We're just going to write this game off as complete crap, and move on with our lives to the Cubs series. Sometimes, when the conditions are wrong, it's just not worth over-analyzing a game that you know if a situational anomaly. I doubt we will play many games this year at home in 100+ degree weather outside of this week. Yeah, it stinks that we couldn't win the series against our division leader, but we're still 3-3 on the home stand with a chance to make it a winner against a terrible Cubs squad.

Instead I'll focus on the guys who stepped up in the series, and the guys who let us down:

Stepped up - Andrelton Simmons went 5/12 with 3 RBIs in the series. He is hitting .333 so far on the season, and he's slowly becoming one of the more reliable hitters at the plate in addition to his glove. Freddie Freeman also really stepped up with a 4/9 and 4 RBI series. Simmons and Freeman were responsible for almost half of our run production at the plate during this series. Chipper, Freeman, Simmons, and Prado are red hot on the week as they are all batting at a .350+ average.

Let Downs - Bourn had an awful week both with the bat and the glove. He made his worst error of the year in game 3, and he's batting .182 on the week, and 2/11 in the Nats series. Brian McCann's year continued to go downhill in this series. He didn't get a single hit against the Nats in 9 ABs, he was replaced by Ross in the third game, and he's batting .143 on the week. Dan Uggla also had a mostly terrible series. He was yanked in game one, and went 1/7 in the next two games with 3 Ks. He ended up batting .059 on the week. Dan Uggla is now 2nd in the NL in most strikeouts for the year with 92. He may cross the 100 strikeout mark before the All Star break if he doesn't get it together. I can't even begin to tell you how disgusted that makes me.

Simmons, Prado, Chipper, Bourn, Rossy, Heyward, and Freeman are all batting .265+ on the season now. That's great numbers for a majority of the lineup, and it gives me a lot of hope about our chances down the stretch. I think it's obvious what names are missing from that list, and I will continue to hammer the point home until things change. We head into the Cubs series against a team that has no chance at the playoffs. We need to hammer them just as hard.

Go Braves!

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