Friday, August 31, 2012

Braves @ Padres: Game 2-3 Recap

Well we ended the road trip 4-6, and I was stuck in a conference room for 8 hours a day for the last 2 days listening to seminars on Audit and Tax updates. Yeah. Luckily I'm getting ready to head to Colorado for the long weekend, and I expect many of you are also preparing to enjoy the holiday in your own way. Mine will be with golf and watching football. So without a further ado let's recap these two games and move on to the home stand.

Game 2 was our standout game in the series, since we won it with Medlen on the mound. Do I need to say more than "Medlen" to let you know that we won? He gets the MVP for 8 innings of 5 hit shutout baseball in our 2-0 win. We went 1-7 with RISP which was terrible, but the Padres never even had more than 2 chances to knock an anybody. Our lineup still struggled with Heyward and Freeman both going 0-for, but McCann and Uggla did manage to both have hits in the same game, including Dan going deep in the 5th. However, even though we won a pitcher's duel, that lack of offense would show up in...

Game 3. The Braves had 7 hits, but only went 0-4 with RISP. Notice how we're still living and dying by homers? Oh, and Hanson was bad again. He goes less than 5 innings giving up 4 runs on 8 hits and 2 walks. It's another situation where Hanson gets batters into favorable counts and lets them off the hook with hits. He was constantly putting the leadoff man on base starting in the 2nd inning. The pitches weren't locating, and he was up in the zone on his fastball way too often, letting the hitters punish him repeatedly. The game took a turn in the 5th when Chipper ran into Janish on a popup behind 3rd, and then Tommy literally gave up on a bunt in front of the plate. With two on, and a sac to move them over, a double scored both runs to make the game 4-1. From that point on, we never came back and Tommy had to go. I'm sick of him, and he's the anti-Medlen in my mind. Whereas I never think we're going to lose with Medlen taking the hill, I ALWAYS think we're going to lose when Tommy toes the rubber.

The road trip was full of opportunities with Washington going into a huge skid, but we didn't take any of them. We're still 5.5 back, and 4 games up in the wild card. Nothing has changed. That can be good or bad. It's good from the perspective we played like crap and still managed to keep things even. It's bad that if we'd played a 6-4 trip instead of a 4-6, we'd be 3.5 back in the division race. It's worse when you consider that we lost a series to a Padres team that has no shot at all for the playoffs.

Considering what we know about the playoff picture so far, Washington, Cincy, St Louis, SF, and the Dodgers have the best shot with us to make it. Not all will, but I just wanted to see how we've fared against those teams as a possible playoff series projection. Here's the breakdown of our record in 2012:

San Francisco: 3-4
LA Dodgers: 3-3
St. Louis: 5-1
Cincinnati: 1-5
Washington: 5-10

So, I think you can tell we don't want to play Washington or Cincy. Unfortunately, they are probably going to be #1 and #2 in the NL regardless, so even if we win a wild card and get into the one game playoff, AND win the one game playoff, we'd be stuck with one of them. Ugh. We just gotta start hitting. A lot.

Go Braves!

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