Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Game 1 Recap: Royals 4/16/13

So you can throw 100 mph? Think you can make it in the show? Justin Upton can change your mind real quick. I don't care how fast you can throw, he can turn on a fastball and make you look like a fool. And he wasn't alone last night. Jason Heyward, Juan Francisco, and Dan Uggla all joined in on the boomstick party. We had 5 homers in one game. It was a launching pad last night, and the Braves hitters were lifting off in the late innings to win 6-3.

When you add up all the footage on the homers from last night, the Braves hit the ball over a quarter mile into the stands. The longest one was Francisco's to deep center at 421, but Justin's was 420 and probably would have gone further without clunking the top walkway deck of the outfield stands. Remember in the preview when I said the Royals don't hit many homers and have to string together hits to score? The Braves don't. At all. The Braves can string together jacks to win. For most of the game, we didn't hit well, but we did pitch well. Medlen only gave up one earned run in 7 innings with no walks. He deserved more than just a no decision, but unfortunately the defense was a diaster last night. We had 3 errors in the game, one by Uggla (of course), one by Gattis, and one by Francisco. If you asked me, "Ben who has the most errors in the MLB?" You'd be thinking it was Uggla right? Well, no. It's actually Ruben Tejada of the Mets with 6 errors. Dan only has 4 errors, but that does tie him with Ryan Zimmerman. That's the guy at 3rd for the Nationals who can't make a simple throw.

The Braves now have a 12-1 record with a +42 run differential. That leads the majors in both categories. We're one win away from tying the best start in franchise history of 13-1, set by the 1994 Braves. We're also 4.5 games up on the Nationals, who lost their last outing to the (heh) Marlins. The Braves lead the MLB with 25 home runs. We are 3rd in the MLB in overall slugging. Our pitching staff has the best ERA in baseball, and they are #1 in the MLB in opposing batting average. We lead a lot of categories on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball, and it's translating to wins. Also, we're only 9 Ks above the league average while also being 2 BBs above the league average. That means we're not striking out at nearly the rates we've been concerned about in the regular season, not are we grounding into double plays (we're tied for 5th fewest DPs on the season). The batting has been economical, as well as productive in bursts. We're taking out walks when we can get them, and we're cashing them in. As a result, we're top 10 in OBP, which is a key category for a power team. The more you can put on base, the bigger the impact when you can rip one out of the ballpark.

The CPA was right again last night, moving to a 10-3 record. Let's see who it likes in game 2. Will we tie our record from 1994?

CPA Prediction Game 2: Braves 4 - Royals 1

Time to make some history. Let's get a 2 game sweep and get back on the road trip.


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