Braves Beating Mets Like They Stole Something

Written by Colin on July 17, 2009 – 8:34 pm

That line is courtesy of @reggielott on Twitter. But it’s so true. The Braves are up 10-0 right now and are still hitting. In the meantime, I want to link you to a video interview I did with OnTheBlack.com before the series started – go check them out to catch the whole thing… It included some series and season predictions… Take a watch and keep up with OnTheBlack.com for video blogs regarding the Mets – always good to be educated on the division! Thanks Kerel for involving us in your pre-series coverage!

Go Braves!


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Hanson To Make Debut

Written by Colin on June 7, 2009 – 9:23 am

When the Braves take the field today at 1:30, Tommy Hanson will take the mound for his first major league start. That’s right, we’ve heard legendary tales of the 6’6″ pitcher’s fastball and curveball, but today we get to see it in person (or on TV).

Hanson is 3-3 at AAA Gwinnett, with a 1.49 ERA, 90 strikeouts, all while holding opponents to an incredible .169 average. His last four starts have just been dazzling – he’s gone 2-0 with a 0.78 ERA, with 33 strikeouts in just over 25 innings.

Opposite Hanson is the Brewers’ Manny Parra, 3-7 with a 6.75 ERA. Hopefully we can provide some offense. Any offense. At all. Let’s give Hanson the run support he deserves.


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Looking To End On A High Note

Written by Jonathan on April 26, 2009 – 11:57 am

Halfway through the road trip, it looked like there was no hope of having a decent road trip for the Braves.  The first five games yielded a 1-4 record, including two shutouts at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Since then however, they have compiled a three-game win streak and are looking for the sweep today in Cincinnati to complete a winning road trip.  After  yesterday’s 10-2 win, the Braves have a 9-8 record on the season.

Today, Kenshin Kawakami (1-2, 4.76 ERA) faces off against Micah Owings (0-2, 5.59 ERA) to close out the series.  Brandon Jones will make his first start in left field since being called up to replace the injured Garret Anderson.  It’s still not clear how much time Bobby Cox will have Jones spend in the field, but it’s good to see him get the opportunity to gain some playing time. 

Stay with us for in-game updates as the Braves look to take the sweep and come back to Atlanta with a winning road trip.

Braves: 2          Reds: 8

Top 9th: Matt Diaz singles with one out. Kelly Johnson strikes out. Escobar singles up the middle. That’s the ballgame. Reds win 8-2.
Bot 8th: Parr gives up two singles but no runs.
Top 8th: Chipper Jones with a leadoff double to left field. 3-4 on the day. Brandon Jones singles and scores Chipper. 8-2 Reds.
Bot 7th: James Parr gets the Reds 1-2-3 in the inning.
Top 7th: Ross with a solo home run to left with one out. 8-1 Reds. Johnson singles. Yunel singles to right but is thrown out trying to stretch it into a double.
Bot 6th: Buddy Carlyle gives up a single to Micah Owings, but nothing more.
Top 6th: Chipper singles to lead off the inning. He has two of the Braves’ three hits today. Nothing further from the offense in the inning.
Bot 5th: Hernandez singles to right and Janish is hit by a pitch with no outs. Owings singles off of Hernandez’s foot, who’s out on the interference call. Taveras singles to load the bases. Votto doubles to right to scores three. 5-0 Reds. Phillips singles to right, scoring Votto. 6-0 Reds. Jay Bruce with a two-run homer, his second of the day. 8-0 Reds.
Top 5th: David Ross draws a leadoff walk but never advances past first base.
Bot 4th: Joey Votto puts the Reds’ first hit on the board with a one-out double down the right field line. Votto to third on a wild pitch. Jay Bruce sneaks a two-run homer in by the left field foul pole. 2-0 Reds.
Top 4th: Brandon Jones hits a two-out single but Schafer strikes out. We need to start getting some guys on base with less than two-outs.
Bot 3rd: 1-2-3 inning for Kawakami. 33 pitches through 3.
Top 3rd: Braves down 1-2-3 in the inning.
Bot 2nd: Jay Bruce walks to lead off the inning and is thrown out on a fielder’s choice by Encarnacion. Ross throws out Encarnacion trying to steal second and Hernandez grounds out softly to end the inning.
Top 2nd: Brandon Jones draws a one-out walk. Schafer strikes out and Ross tacks on a two-out walk. Kawakami can’t help himself out however and strikes out.
Bot 1st: Kawakami hits Votto but no offense from the Reds in the first.
Top 1st: Chipper sends a two-out single to right field. Kotchman grounds out to end the inning however.

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Braves Look To Start A Streak

Written by Jonathan on April 25, 2009 – 12:03 pm

The Braves are looking to turn around a nine-game road trip that started off with them losing four out of five games.  After back-to-back shutouts by the Pittsburgh Pirates and losing the series to the Washington Nationals, the Braves have managed to win two consecutive games.  The record on the road trip is now up to 3-4 and could be brought back up to .500 with a win today.  If the Braves can sweep the Cincinnati Reds, it will give them a winning road trip that has, for the most part, provided few high points.

Garret Anderson and Brian McCann have made trips to the 15-day disabled list.  The offense is struggling to put men on base (but somehow drawing enough bases loaded walks to keep them in games), but overall, the team is fighting to get back to Atlanta on Monday with something to show for it all.  Today, Derek Lowe brings his 1-1 record and 3.27 ERA into Cincinnati to face off against Bronson Arroyo, who is the first Reds pitcher to have a 3-0 start since 1997.

Two wins under our belt and hopeful for a third today.  The Braves are in need of a win streak.  Stay with us for updates throughout the game.

Braves: 10         Reds: 2

Bot 9th: Jeff Bennett on to finish up the game for the Braves. Janish with a one-out single to center. Nix singles with two outs. No runs cross the plate. Braves win 10-2.
Top 9th: Francoeur singles but is gotten out on a double play. 3 outs to go.
Bot 8th: O’Flaherty throws a solid 1-2-3 inning.
Top 8th: Schafer draws a leadoff walk and goes to second on a wild pitch. Greg Norton doubles and scores Schafer. 10-2 Braves.
Bot 7th: Lowe walks one and records his 8th strikeout of the game. I think that’ll about do it for him.
Top 7th: Herrera gets the Braves 1-2-3.
Bot 6th: Lowe walks one but retires three with no damage.
Top 6th: Schafer and Ross with back-to-back doubles to lead off the inning. 7-2 Braves. DLowe bunts Ross over to third. Yunel with a two-run homer to center. 9-2 Braves.
Bot 5th: Hanigan doubles to lead off the inning. Arroyo reaches on a bunt. Lowe strikes out three in a row with runners on second and third.
Top 5th: 1-2-3 inning for Arroyo.
Bot 4th: 1-2-3 inning for Derek Lowe.
Top 4th: Escobar hit by another pitch with two outs. Nothing doing for the Braves though.
Bot 3rd: Hairston strikes out at is ejected arguing the call. Dusty Baker also ejected. No offense for the Reds.
Top 3rd: Schafer draws a two-out walk but nothing more for the Braves in the inning.
Bot 2nd: Bruce doubles off the right field wall to lead off. Gonzalez homers to left. 6-2 Braves. Hanigan singles.
Top 2nd: David Ross singles and advances to second on a throwing error. Derek Lowe walks on 4 pitches. Yunel singles to left. 3-0 Braves. Chipper crushes a 3-run home run to right center. 6-0 Braves.
Bot 1st: Derek Lowe strikes out one and hits Joey Votto. No damage done.
Top 1st: Kelly Johnson walks to leadoff the inning. Escobar doubles of the wall to score Johnson. Chipper singles down the right field line. Escobar scores. 2-0 Braves. Kotchman singles. Francoeur grounds into a 6-4-3 double play. Diaz strikes out to end the inning.

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Anderson to DL, Braves In Cincy

Written by Jonathan on April 24, 2009 – 6:12 pm

After a couple of days of nursing his reaggravated left quad, Garret Anderson is headed to the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 20th.  Brandon Jones has been called up from AAA Gwinnett to take his spot on the roster.  It’s unknown when Anderson will be ready to return as he has been nagged with this injury off and on since early March.  I’m sure we’ll have more updates over the next few days.

Today is Chipper Jones’ 37th birthday.  In his career on his birthday, Chipper has a .500 average (18 for 37) with 4 HR, 8 RBI and 10 R.  Let’s hope he can keep that up tonight.  Brian McCann was also a late scratch for the game with further eye issues.  David Ross will take his spot in the lineup.  Here’s to trying to get a win streak started tonight as the Braves kick off the last series of the road trip in Cincinnati.

Stay with us for in-game updates, looks like great weather in Cincinnati for baseball.  Javier Vazquez brings his solid season performance, averaging 12.5 strikeouts per 9 innings, to face off against Edison Volquez.  Volquez is 2-1 on the season, but showing a 6.46 ERA.  Hopefully the Braves offense can show up for the game tonight and help Javy out.

Braves: 4          Reds: 3

Bot 9th: Gonzalez on to close it out and try to get the save. Taveras strikes out looking. Hairston grounds out back to Gonzo. Votto strikes out looking. Gonzo was dominant. Braves win 4-3.
Top 9th: One-out single to left field for Kotchman. That’s about it for the Braves in the inning. Only 4 hits for the offense all night.
Bot 8th: Soriano in to pitch. Jay Bruce leads off the inning with a double into the right field corner. Encarnacion walks. Hernandez bunts the runners over to second and third. Sac fly for Gonzalez scores Bruce. Encarnacion stays at second. 4-3 Braves.
Top 8th: Kelly Johnson hits a two-out single to right. Yunel can’t move him at all however.
Bot 7th: Moylan on to pitch for the Braves. He gives out a two-out walk to Dickerson. Votto reaches on an error by Moylan, but he avoids any runs scoring.
Top 7th: Yunel walks to lead off the inning and Chipper gets him over to second. Francoeur draws his second walk of the night. Diaz singles up the middle to plate Escobar. 4-2 Braves. Masset is replaced on the mound by Herrera. Schafer grounds out to end the inning.
Bot 6th: Encarnacion singles with one out to left. The defense puts away two more. The night’s likely done for Vazquez.
Top 6th: Schafer draws a leadoff walk off of Nick Masset who has taken over for Volquez. No further offense for the Braves though.
Bot 5th: Votto singles past short with two outs. Vazquez strikes out another two. That’s 9 for him.
Top 5th: Francoeur with a two-out solo homer. Braves’ first hit of the night makes it a 3-2 Braves lead.
Bot 4th: Phillips walks to lead off the inning. Hernandez with a two-out single to put runners of first and second. Gonzalez singles up the middle scoring Phillips. 2-2 Game. Vazquez has 7 strikeouts of his own.
Top 4th: Kotchman walks to lead off the inning. Francoeur walks. Kotchman strikes out. Schafer and Ross walks to load the bases. Vazquez walks to bring in a run. 1-1 Game. Johnson walks to bring in another. 2-1 Braves. Volquez has struck out six but walked seven.
Bot 3rd: 1-2-3 inning for Vazquez. Good to see him getting hitters to keep the ball on the ground.
Top 3rd: Yunel hit by a pitch with two outs. Yunel is not happy and has some choice words for Volquez. Benches and bullpens empty. Chipper grounds out to end the inning.
Bot 2nd: Hernandez doubles off the left field wall with one out. Two more Ks for Vazquez.
Top 2nd: Francoeur and Diaz with a one-out walks. Schafer grounds out but moves the runners up a base. Ross strikes out, Volquez’s 4th.
Bot 1st: Taveras leads off with a single and reaches second on a passed ball. Votto singles and Taveras scores. 1-0 Reds. 3 strikeouts in the inning for Vazquez.
Top 1st: 2 strikeouts and a quick grounder gives Volquez a 1-2-3 inning.

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Jurrjens Looks For Redemption

Written by Jonathan on April 22, 2009 – 6:06 pm

Jair Jurrjens finally found his stride against the Pirates Friday night.  After struggling with control for his first two starts of the season, Jurrjens threw a great outing, going 6 2/3 innings and only giving up one run.  Unfortunately for Jair, the Braves failed to put a run on the board and he was stuck with the loss.  Jurrjens comes into tonight’s game with a 2-1 record and a 2.04 ERA.  He will face off against a struggling John Lannan, who has posted an 0-2 record with a 6.46 ERA so far this season.

The Braves are looking for a much needed win tonight after dropping two straight to the Washington Nationals and 7 of their last 8 games.  Stay with us for in game updates.

Braves: 1 Nationals: 0

Bot 9th: Soriano in to close. Dukes strikes out. Willingham pops out to left. Belliard strikes out. Braves win, 1-0. Tough break for Jurrjens however.
Top 9th: Diaz singles with one-out. Kotchman hits into a fielder’s choice. Schafer walks. Infante in to run for Kotchman. Hinckley on to pitch. Prado walks. Kelly Johnson draws a bases loaded walk. 1-0 Braves. Julian Tavarez strikes Escobar out on 3 pitches.
Bot 8th: Zimmerman draws a two-out walk and Jurrjens is done. That’s 14 1/3 straight innings of work for him without one run of support from the offense. Gonzalez on to pitch. Strikeout to Adam Dunn. No decision for Jurrjens.
Top 8th: Garrett Mock in to pitch for the Nats. 1-2-3 for the Braves in the inning.
Bot 7th: Willingham doubles to lead off the inning. Sac bunt moves him to third. Two solid outs by the defense saves a run.
Top 7th: 0-0 game at the stretch. Second start in a row for Jurrjens to pitch a great game and just not getting the offensive backing.
Bot 6th: One LOB for the Nats. No runs.
Top 6th: Braves put a runner on base but no scoring. No run support for Jurrjens again.
Bot 5th: Dukes singles to center to lead off the inning. Nats put two on base but a double play ends the inning.
Top 5th: Top of the Braves lineup down 1-2-3.
Bot 4th: Zimmerman leads of the inning with a double down the left field line. Dunn grounds out and moves Zimmerman to third. Defense manages to keep the run from scoring.
Top 4th: Leadoff single for Brian McCann. Francoeur hits into a fielder’s choice. Kotchman with a two-out double into left. Francoeur to third. Intentional walk to Schafer to load the bases. Jurrjens strikes out to end the threat.
Bot 3rd: Jurrjens responds with a 6-pitch 1-2-3 inning of his own.
Top 3rd: 1-2-3 inning for John Lannan.
Bot 2nd: Dukes strikes out looking. Willingham walks. Belliard grounds into a fielder’s choice and advances to second on a throwing error by Yunel. Stranded there however.
Top 2nd: Leadoff single for Jeff Francoeur. Kotchman draws a one-out walk. Schafer comes a foot short of a home run, but moves Francoeur over to third. Jurrjens grounds out to third. Once again, we need to plate leadoff base runners.
Bot 1st: Nick Johnson with a one-out single. A couple of easy outs and Jurrjens is out of the inning.
Top 1st: Kelly Johnson leads off the game with a single. Yunel grounds out, but advances KJ to second. Chipper strikes out looking. Slow grounder downs McCann. No production from the leadoff hit.

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Mac Is Back For Game Vs. Nats

Written by Jonathan on April 21, 2009 – 5:52 pm

After missing two games with blurred vision in his left eye, Brian McCann has been tentatively written into the linup for tonight’s game against the Washington Nationals.  Mac has been suffering from the blurred vision issues over the past two weeks and had tried a series of options including a contact lens and an antibiotic ointment.  These caused an increase in the blurred vision and the absence from the past two games.

After a visit to an eye doctor this morning in Washington, McCann has been prescribed a new contact lens that has corrected the issues for the most part.  Before taking batting practice today, he said he felt great and would be ready to go.  Bobby Cox, always cautious, has a lineup ready without McCann as well and said a lot would depend on how he looked while taking batting practice today.

Kenshin Kawakami takes the mound for the Braves today, facing off against Shairon Martis, who has been credited for one of the Nationals’ two wins on the season.  After dropping the first game of the series last night, the Braves need to get back into the win column tonight.

Braves: 3 Nationals: 4

Top 9th: Hanrahan on to close for the Nats. Diaz draws a 4-pitch, leadoff walk. Schafer doubles down the right field line. Diaz to third. No outs, runners at second and third and the Braves can’t plate a run. This is pathetic. Nats win, 4-3.
Bot 8th: Gonzo on to pitch. Gets a strikeout to start the inning and then a walk. Gonzalez steals second and McCann throws the ball into center; Gonzalez to third. Yunel picks up a sharp grounder and throws Gonzalez out at home.
Top 8th: Chipper singles to lead off the inning. McCann lines out sharply to second. Kotchman flies out to center. Francoeur grounds out to third. Down to our last three outs.
Bot 7th: Peter Moylan on to pitch for the Braves. Gives up a walk, but no hits or damage.
Top 7th: Hinckley on to pitch for the Nats. Prado singles to lead off the inning. Johnson bunts him over to second. Yunel strikes out. Prado thrown out stealing third.
Bot 6th: Adam Dunn with a solo homer to center. 3-2 Braves. Dukes reaches on an error by Chipper. Kearns triples under the glove of Diaz. 3-3 Game. Bennett on to replace Kawakami. Bennett retires two, but Willingham singles to left. 4-3 Nationals. Johnson strikes out to end the inning. Really unfortunate for Kawakami to be on the hook for the loss now.
Top 6th: Schafer doubles with two outs but is thrown out on his way back to second after taking too large of a turn.
Bot 5th: Nick Johnson singles with one out. Great double play to end the inning. 5 pitches for Kawakami.
Top 5th: Escobar with a one-out single. Chipper grounds into a fielder’s choice. McCann walks. Can’t get a run across though.
Bot 4th: Kawakami issues two one-out walks. Groundout and a strikeout to avoid any more runs.
Top 4th: Kotchman singles to lead off the inning. Francoeur gets Kotchman over to second. Diaz grounds out to third. Kawakami strikes out looking to end the inning.
Bot 3rd: 1-2-3 inning for Kawakami. Great sliding catch for Diaz to end the inning.
Top 3rd: Chipper sends a one-out single up the middle. McCann grounds into a double play.
Bot 2nd: Dukes with a leadoff double. Thrown out by a great throw from McCann trying to steal third. Kearns walks and scores on a double off the fence for Flores. 3-1 Braves. Gonzales with an infield single. Martis strikes out trying to bunt. Kawakami takes care of a little chopper to avoid further damage.
Top 2nd: Braves down 1-2-3.
Bot 1st: Zimmerman hits a two-out double, but no further damage.
Top 1st: Two out walks for Chipper and McCann. Kotchman drives one to right center. Chipper scores 1-0 Braves. Infield hit for Francoeur and an error allows two runs to score. 3-0 Braves.


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Braves at Nationals, Game 1

Written by Jonathan on April 20, 2009 – 5:37 pm

Derek Lowe takes on the Nationals tonight as their #1 prospect Jordan Zimmermann takes the mound in his major league debut. The Braves have lost six in a row in Washington and need a series win after losing five of their last six this season. The Nationals have done some roster shuffling recently after a dismal 1-10 start to the season – so Braves fans, remember it could always be worse.

Brian McCann is out of the lineup tonight as he’s still experiencing some eye dryness. He may need lasik surgery before he can return – hopefully that’s not the case. Either way, good thing Dave Ross got healthy just in time for this. Fortunately Chipper should play tonight – the Braves are a much better team when opposing pitchers have to think about pitching around him.

The Braves need to step it up and take at least 2 out of 3 from the Nationals. They’re an easy team to take it from – and we need to be back on track soon so we don’t fall behind early in the season. Hopefully our bullpen is less sucky without Blaine Boyer.

Braves: 2 Nationals: 3

Top 9th: Kotchman walks and the Braves can do nothing with him. Nats win 3-2.
Bot 8th: Rafael Soriano on th pitch. Dunn doubles to lead off the inning. Willingham hit by a pitch. Soriano strikes out two to get out of a bases loaded jam.
Top 8th: Two outs in the half inning….rain delay. One pitch for the third out.
Bot 7th: Rain’s coming down again. Eric O’Flaherty on to pitch for the Braves. 1-2-3 inning for the bullpen. That’s refreshing.
Top 7th: Kip Wells on to pitch for the Nats. Schafer draws a two-out walk but doesn’t advance.
Bot 6th: Dukes with a one-out single. Willingham singles past Chipper. Dukes to third. Flores singles past short. 3-2 Nationals.
Top 6th: Quick 1-2-3 inning for Zimmermann.
Bot 5th: Hernandez walks. Johnson singles past short. Two on with one out. Zimmerman grounds into a double play to end the inning.
Top 5th: Ross walks to lead off the inning. Lowe pops up the bunt again and gets Ross and himself out on the double play.
Bot 4th: Johnson walks to lead off the inning. Zimmerman singles to right. Dunn with a sac fly to the track moves the runners up. Dukes singles to right. Johnson scores. 2-1 Braves. Dukes steals second and intentional pass to Willingham to load the bases. Flores sac fly. 2-2 Game.
Top 4th: Chipper triples down the right field line to lead off the inning. Kotchman pops out to short. Francoeur grounds out to second. Diaz turns on one for a two-run homer to left center. 2-0 Braves.
Bot 3rd: Rain’s starting to fall again. Flores singles to lead off. No further damage though.
Top 3rd: David Ross with a leadoff single. Sacrifice by Lowe fails and Lowe’s at first. Johnson singles to right. Double play ends the inning however. Nothing on the board.
Bot 2nd: Lowe gets his second strikeout of the evening while notching another 1-2-3 inning.
Top 2nd: Kotchman leads off with a double but is thrown out trying to take third on a passed ball. Francoeur strikes out but Diaz doubles to center. Left there by a Schafer flyout. Should have gotten a run out of that had Kotchman not caught the tough break.
Bot 1st: Lowe responds with 1-2-3 inning of his own.
Top 1st: Braves down 1-2-3 on 7 pitches.


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Chipper Returns To Try To Avoid Sweep

Written by Jonathan on April 19, 2009 – 12:05 pm

With Chipper Jones out of the lineup for the past 4 games, the Braves have been nothing short of abyssmal.  In those 4 games, the Braves have only managed 6 total runs, as well as being shut out by the Pirates the last two games.  After starting out the season 5-1, they have dropped 5 straight to fall below .500 on the season.

Chipper has been nursing a bruised left thumb for the entire season that he reaggravated during a home game against the Marlins last Tuesday.  Yunel Escobar, who has missed two games with a strained abdominal muscle, is a game-time decision today.  Hopefully one, or both, of the two can provide a much needed spark for the Braves’ offense today and avoid the sweep by the Pirates.

Javier Vazquez takes the mound for the Braves today with an 0-1 record and 4.50 ERA.  Vazquez has been dominant with the strikeout this season, but still has been giving up some runs.  Zach Duke will be on the hill for the Pirates with a 2-0 record this season and a non-existent 0.59 ERA.  Chipper however, has hit .500 on his career against the left-hander.

Stay with us for ongoing updates throughout the game.

Braves: 11 Pirates: 1

Bot 9th: James Parr on for the Braves. Parr labors a bit but only gives up a run. Braves win 11-1.
Top 9th: A couple of base runners in the inning but nothing further for the Braves. Let’s hope 11 runs is enough to get through one more inning for the bullpen.
Bot 8th: Jeff Bennett taking the mound for the Braves. Morgan grounds back to Bennett who proceeds to throw the ball halfway to the wall in right field. Morgan takes third. Bennett recovers with a pop-out and a strikeout to keep the shutout.
Top 8th: Donnie Veal on to pitch for the Pirates. Infante doubles to center. Prado walks and a wild pitch moves the runners over. Chipper walks to load the bases. Sac fly for Diaz scores Infante. 11-0 Braves.
Bot 7th: Moylan on to pitch for the Braves. 1-2-3 inning. The bullpen only needs to survive 6 more outs.
Top 7th: Craig Hansen in to replace Zach Duke. Chipper gets hit by a pitch with one out. Francoeur doubles down the right field line and Chipper scores. 7-0 Braves. Kotchman walks. Dave Ross with a three-run homer. 10-0 Braves. That’s why we signed him.
Bot 6th: Morgan leads off with a single up the middle. Sanchez follows with another single. A couple of good plays in the field and Vazquez’s 8th strikeout on the day saves any further trouble.
Top 6th: Schafer singles, 3-3 for him today. Vazquez bunts him over to second but he doesn’t make it any further.
Bot 5th: 1-2-3 inning for Vazquez and the game is official now. Let it rain.
Top 5th: Diaz singles to lead off the inning but is thrown out on a double play ball from Francoeur. Kotchman pops out and it’s a quick inning for Zach Duke.
Bot 4th: Diaz in to replace Anderson in right field. Vazquez strikes out another pair for 7 today. He’s second in MLB right now on the season (24), behind Johan Santana (27).
Top 4th: Ross doubles to right. Schafer bunts Ross to third and is safe at first. Vazquez make the sacrifice bunt to move the runners to 2nd and 3rd with one out. Infante pops out. Prado with a 3-run homer to left center. 6-0 Braves.
Bot 3rd: Starting to rain in Pittsburgh. Vazquez strikes out another two. 5 on the day now. Sanchez hits a double but is left standing on second.
Top 3rd: Chipper Jones leads the inning off with a single. Francoeur hits a two-out single to center but Chipper is thrown out after overrunning second base. A couple of base running mistakes on the day, let’s hope they don’t come back to haunt us.
Bot 2nd: Another K for Vazquez. Wilson singles to center and is thrown out by Schafer trying to stretch it into a double.
Top 2nd: Schafer singles. Vazquez bunts and Duke throws the ball into center field. Infante pops out on a bunt and Prado grounds into a double play. Wasted chance there.
Bot 1st: A single and a walk, but Vazquez strikes out two and gets Adam LaRoche to ground out to avoid any damage.
Top 1st: Prado doubles to left but is caught in a rundown on a Chipper fielder’s choice. Garret Anderson doubles to left. Francoeur with a 2 RBI double to center. 2-0 Braves. Kotchman with an RBI single. 3-0 Braves.

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Oh No, It’s Jo-Jo

Written by Jonathan on April 18, 2009 – 11:42 am

The Braves were counting on Tom Glavine to take the start today, but due to his recent injury setbacks, they have had to look elsewhere.  The answer comes in the form of Jo-Jo Reyes, who was called up from AAA Gwinnett this morning.  Jo-Jo hasn’t gotten much love here at BravesBlast in the past, with a 3-11 record last season and over a 5 ERA.  Reyes looked decent in spring with a 2-0 record and a 2.08 ERA.  We won’t be easily convinced.

Ian Snell is taking the hill for the Pirates. We’ll be updating throughout the game as the Braves try to get back into the win column.

Braves: 0 Pirates: 10

Top 9th: That’s 18 innings that the Braves have been shut out by the Pirates. Something has to change and has to change quickly. There’s always tomorrow, right?
Bot 8th: James Parr gives up a couple of hits and a run. 10-0 Pirates.
Top 8th: Braves strand one. Is it over yet?
Bot 7th: Another 3 run homer and an assortment of hits, all with two outs. 9-0 Pirates.
Top 7th: Braves down 1-2-3. The offensive struggles are getting a little old.
Bot 6th: Sanchez triples past Jordan Schafer (should have been a single) and McLouth knocks him in with a single. Steals second and an intentional walk to Doumit. 3-run homer to Monroe. 5-0 Pirates. Andy LaRoche doubles to left. Intentional walk to Vazquez. Buddy Carlyle comes on to pitch and gets Ian Snell to ground out on the first pitch.
Top 6th: Another double play sinks any hope the Braves had of getting on the board in the inning.
Bot 5th: Another 1-2-3 inning for Jo-Jo. Where’s the run support?
Top 5th: Prado singles to lead off the inning, but is caught stealing after a Jordan Schafer strikeout. Jo-Jo strikes out to end the inning.
Bot 4th: Doumit with a one-out double to the center field wall. Jo-Jo gets the double play to end the inning.
Top 4th: McCann and Kotchman make it to 2nd and 3rd with two outs. Francoeur flies out to center to end the inning though. We need to start plating runners. I think we’re up to 2 runs in 25 innings now.
Bot 3rd: Another 1-2-3 for Jo-Jo.
Top 3rd: Jo-Jo draws a two-out walk. No help though.
Bot 2nd: Leadoff double for Doumit. Andy LaRoche knocks him in with a two-out double. 1-0 Pirates.
Top 2nd: Braves down 1-2-3. The offensive struggles continue.
Bot 1st: 1-2-3 inning for Jo-Jo to get started. A couple of nice defensive plays behind them, but definitely a good boost to the confidence.
Top 1st: Nothing doing for the Braves in the top of the 1st.  Infante singles but got doubled up on a sharp Anderson line drive.

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Braves Kick Off Roadtrip In Pittsburgh

Written by Jonathan on April 17, 2009 – 6:08 pm

After a three-game sweep by the Marlins, the Braves are looking to turn things back around against the Pirates as they kick off a 9-game roadtrip.  Coming into the roadtrip at 5-4 the Braves are looking to get back into form that got them off to a 5-1 start.  Over the next 9 games in Pittsburgh, Washington and Cincinnati, the Braves will be fighting through a few injury issues with both pitching and starting offense, but we have fought through worse in the past.

Tonight, Jair Jurrjens looks to overcome some of the control issues that have haunted him up until this point in the season (while still retaining a solid 2.45 ERA) and bring down Paul Maholm for the Pirates.  The left-handed Maholm comes into tonight’s game with a 1-0 record and a 1.32 ERA.  The Braves have struggled at the plate against lefties throughout last season and into the first games of this one.

We’ll be updating throughout the game as the Braves try to get back into the win column.

Braves: 0     Pirates: 3

As a result of our server outage during the game, we were unable to finish covering the progress.

Top 6th: McCann reaches after being hit by a pitch for the second time tonight but the Braves can’t capitalize.
Bot 5th: A couple more strikeouts for Jurrjens. That’s 5 on the night. The Pirates strand a runner on third.
Top 5th: I was still ordering food. But we didn’t score either.
Bot 4th: McLouth singles to right field to leadoff. I got distracted looking for food, but they didn’t score.
Top 4th: Francoeur singles but gets doubled up by a sharp liner from Prado. Nothing on the board for the Braves still.
Bot 3rd: 1-2-3 inning for Jurrjens with 2 Ks. We need to see more of those.
Top 3rd: Jurrjens walks to lead off the inning. Sac bunt by Kelly Johnson moves the runner. Two flyouts and the Braves are unable to capitalize on the leadoff runner.
Bot 2nd: Moss triples off the wall. Once again, Schafer misplays the ball. Andy LaRoche plates Moss with a ball to short. 1-0 Pirates.
Top 2nd: McCann gets hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Francoeur singles up the middle. Prado singles past short to load the bases with no outs. Kotchman pops out to the catcher and Schafer grounds into a double play. How can we expect to win if we blow chances like that?
Bot 1st: Sanchez triples off the center field wall with one out, not handled well by Schafer. Jurrjens gets McLouth to strike out and Doumit to pop out to get out of the inning with no damage done.
Top 1st: Braves down 1-2-3. We’re going to need to find that early offense that started the season off so strong again.

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Kawakami Tries To Avoid Sweep

Written by Jonathan on April 16, 2009 – 11:12 am

After two rough beatings by the Marlins, the Braves are looking for Kenshin Kawakami to steer them past the potential sweep in today’s afternoon game to end the homestand.  Kawakami took the win in his first outing of the season behind a 3-run, 4-hit performance where he struck out 8 in 6 innings of work.  Hopefully that was the confidence booster he needed after a rough outing in the exhibition game at Turner Field before the season kicked off.

The Braves will have to produce runs without Chipper Jones and Brian McCann in the lineup today.  Chipper is still nursing the bruised thumb that was reaggravated during Tuesday’s game.  Omar Infante will take the start at third.  David Ross will be filling in for Brian McCann.  Ross was activated off of the disabled list and took the place of Clint Sammons on the roster, who was sent back to AAA Gwinnett.

After two rough games, the Braves are looking to avoid the sweep and get out of town on a high note to kick off the road trip.  Stick with us for in-game updates.

Bottom 9th:
Nunez on to pitch for the Marlins.
– Ross singles.
– Brian McCann pops out. Double play. 2 out.
– Johnson grounds out. 3 out.
Final: 6-2 Marlins

Top 9th:
Jorge Campillo on to pitch for the Braves.
– Gload triples to center.
– Bonifacio strikes out. 1 out.
– Amezaga singles. Gload scores. 6-2 Marlins.
– Amezaga thrown out trying to steal second. 2 out.
– Ramirez flies out to second. 3 out.

Bottom 8th:
Nunez on to pitch for the Marlins.
– Kotchman lines out to first. 1 out.
– Francoeur strikes out swinging. 2 out.
– Schafer strikes out…..again. 3 out.

Top 8th:
– Cantu strikes out. 1 out.
– Uggla singles to left.
– Hermida strikes out looking. 2 out.
– Ross singles to center. Uggla to center.
– Paulino grounds into a force out. 3 out.

Bottom 7th:
Calero on to pitch for the Marlins.
– Infante pops out to right. 1 out.
– Prado flies out to left. 2 out.
Meyer on to pitch.
– Anderson flies out to center. 3 out.

Top 7th:
Jeff Bennett in to pitch.
– Bonifacio grounds out to third. 1 out.
– Amezaga grounds out to second. 2 out.
– Ramirez flies out to right. 3 out.
Good to see a 1-2-3 from the bullpen.

Bottom 6th:
– Ross flies out to right. 1 out.
– Norton flies out to right. 2 out.
– Johnson grounds out first. 3 out.

Top 6th:
– Uggla walks.
– Hermida triples to center. Uggla scores. 4-2 Marlins.
– Ross sac fly to center. Schafer’s throw off-line. 1 out. 5-2 Marlins.
– Paulino grounds out to third. 2 out.
– Sanchez grounds out to second. 3 out.
At 109 pitches and the pitcher spot up in the inning, I’d say Kawakami’s done.

Bottom 5th:
– Infante flies out to center. 1 out.
– Escobar grounds out to short. 2 out.
– Anderson doubles to right.
– Kotchman singles.
– Francoeur doubles to center. Anderson scores. 3-2 Marlins.
– Schafer strikes out. 3 out.
Jordan needs to get all the check swings under control.

Top 5th:
– Amezaga strikes out. 1 out.
– Ramirez strikes out. 2 out.
– Cantu strikes out. 3 out.
Great inning for Kawakami. 7 Ks on the day.

Bottom 4th:
– Ross grounds out to third. 1 out.
– Kawakami singles.
– Johnson grounds into a fielder’s choice. 2 out.
– Johnson thrown out trying to steal second. 3 out.

Top 4th:
– Ross singles past short.
– Paulino strikes out. 1 out.
– Sanchez grounds into a fielder’s choice. 2 out.
– Bonifacio strikes out. 3 out.
Good to avoid the leadoff single.

Bottom 3rd:
– Infante flies out to left. 1 out.
– Escobar flies out to right. 2 out.
– Anderson doubles to right.
– Kotchman walks.
– Francoeur singles past short. Anderson scores. Kotchman to second. 3-1 Marlins.
– Schafer strikes out. 3 out.
At least we’re on the board.

Top 3rd:
– Amezega grounds out to Kawakami. 1 out.
– Ramirez flies out to right. 2 out.
– Cantu walks.
– Uggla doubles to left. Cantu to third.
– Hermida strikes out swinging. 3 out.
Worked out of a jam there.

Bottom 2nd:
– Jeff Francoeur flies out to center. 1 out.
– Jordan Schafer grounds out to first. 2 out.
– David Ross walks.
– Kenshin Kawakami singles to left. Ross to second.
– Johnson pops out to second. 3 out.
Another couple of runners stranded. We need to start crossing the plate with those!

Top 2nd:
– Jorge Cantu singles past third.
– Dan Uggla grounds to short. KJ bobbles the catch for the double play. Both runners safe.
– Jeremy Hermida flies out to center. Runners stay put. 1 out.
– Cody Ross homers to right. 3-0 Marlins.
– Ronny Paulino walks.
– Anibal Sanchez bunts to first. Paulino to second. 2 out.
– Bonifacio grounds out to first. 3 out.
Those runs are all on KJ, the inning should have been over. Not to mention the many added pitches on Kawakami’s arm.

Bottom 1st:
– Kelly Johnson flies out to center. 1 out.
– Omar Infante lines out to center. 2 out.
– Yunel Escobar singles to left. Steals second.
– Garret Anderson walks.
– Casey Kotchman flies out to left. 3 out.
Stranded a few men, but at least a little spark of offense.

Top 1st: 
– Emilio Bonifacio strikes out swinging. 1 out.
– Alfredo Amezega flies out to right. 2 out.
– Hanley Ramirez grounds out to third 3 out.
Just the start that Kawakami needed.  Good 1-2-3 inning.


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