Saturday, May 7, 2016

Game 1: Braves v Dbacks 5/6/16

The Diamondbacks had lost 6 games in a row coming into this series with the Braves. Aaron Blair had a chance to make it 7 games, but his defense really let him down. Garcia dropped a ball in the 2nd inning that led to the first Arizona run, although for some reason he wasn't charged with an error. But there were plenty of other errors to go along with that. Reid Brignac made a throwing error to third that would have gotten Blair out of a jam, but that runner later scored. Basically, Aaron Blair gave up 3 runs, but should have only given up 1 run if not for the defense.

And if Blair only gives up that one run, he probably goes deeper in the game, and Jim Johnson isn't forced to come in for the 6th inning, where he gives up a homer. The Braves in the bottom half of that inning scored 2 runs, so it would have been a Braves lead. And then who knows how the rest of the game unfolds. Basically, I'm pointing out how this was a very winnable game, despite how the final score looks. I'm getting really tired of watching these older players BUTCHER defense when there's no reason to still have them playing on this roster.

We need to see the younger talent now. If they commit errors fine, but the advantage of a veteran core is supposed to be their ability to perform the basic actions of the game. These vets can't defensively, and it's hard to watch.

The bullpen was terrible this game but it didn't matter. Since the Braves only scored 2 runs, the game was effectively over in the 3rd inning when the Dbacks went up by 3 runs. AJ went 0-2 before being ejected for arguing balls and strikes, then replaced by Flowers (duh, Flowers should be starting), and Flowers went on to have one of the 2 RISP hits and RBIs on the game. Aybar had two hits in complete Aybar fashion, singles after the Braves were already behind, with nobody on base. You put a guy on base for Aybar, he's a turnstile.

The Braves had 10 hits, but only 2 runs. Again, that's a power problem. When you can't hit homers and you ground into 2 double plays, you have to get at least 3 singles just to score one run. That's pretty impossible to win with against a Dbacks team that despite their pitching woes, they can rake the ball around the ballpark.

The Fredi Gonzalez firing watch is still on. I have a feeling that if Bud Black was willing to step into this mess he would already be gone. The fact that they haven't made a move yet says to me that Bud won't agree to take over yet, or maybe not until next season. And I can't really blame him. I wouldn't want to step into this mess either, a creation of a front office rebuild and a complete lack of leadership and pride out there by the players and the manager. Defense is not a matter of just skill, it's a matter of work, repetition, and pride. And I question whether some of these guys are willing to put in the work to make it better, or if they just think of themselves as hitters and the rest is secondary. Well guess what? They aren't hitting either, so I at least expect them to be solid in the field.

Next up, it's Julio v a completely lost Shelby Miller. I'm not even kidding about this, it's a must-win for this Braves team. This is the only game they've been favored in for weeks. If they can't beat a pitcher with an 8+ ERA at home with their best veteran starter? Forget it. Fire everybody you can fire on the staff, unload the veteran contracts we're holding, and I don't want to see this roster as it is anymore. Because the games won't get easier than this.

Go out there and prove it today Braves. The fans need it!



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