Braves Journal, The House That Mac Built

Scarred, but smarter.

13 May

Braves 8, Marlins 4

“Oh, those bases on balls!” For the really old among us (Blazon? Coop?), we remember this as the regular lament of announcer and Hall of Famer Frankie Frisch, the Fordham Flash. Frisch was an announcer for the Braves in the late 30’s (they were then known as the Boston Bees). To tie this lament even closer to our Braves, the manager of the 1914 Miracle Braves was George Stallings. According to legend, when asked by his physician why he had a bad heart, Stallings replied, “Bases on balls, doc … those damned bases on balls.” I also seem to recall Ole Ernie Johnson using this lament occasionally—but my memory is not to be trusted.

Oh, you want to hear about the game? The Marlins had 11 hits, the Braves 10. But the Braves outscored the Fish 8 to 4. The difference? The Braves received 7 bases on balls, while Braves pitchers walked no batters.

Folty is clearly the Braves’ best pitcher this year. That’s damning with faint praise, since the rest of the starters have ranged from disappointing to abysmal. Still, Folty seems to have turned a corner. He had one bad start, but otherwise has been quite consistent. Command was always going to be an issue with him; with 6 walkless innings, his walk rate is under 3 per 9 innings. We’ll take that. And for those who care about such stats, he got his first W of the season.

Offensively, Tyler Flowers was the star, with 2 hits (including a homer, 2 runs scored, and 4 batted in). I know he’s not really as good at the plate as he’s been for the Braves for over a year now. Or is he? Most of the rest of the lineup was productive—Kemp had a couple of hits, Phillips drove in 2, Freddie had a double and walked twice (his OBP is .462!). Even young Dansby had a hit and a walk and a run scored. He’s going to be fine—even if not ROY as most everyone on this blog (including me) predicted in the preseason. I’m especially encouraged that he is now walking at a good clip over the past two weeks.

Offense is not the Braves’ problem. If the Braves are going to win more games than the last couple of years, however, they will have to get better starting pitching. Folty is part of that; just as importantly, Julio needs to get back on track. He takes the hill tonight in Miami. One or two of the one year contract old guys needs to step it up, but truth be told, I would very much enjoy seeing any of Lucas Sims, Sean Newcomb, or Patrick Weigel taking some turns later this summer (or even Wisler—haven’t given up on him yet; even Blair had a good start last week, but I’m not expecting much there). And the AA starters have been pretty terrific—we won’t see them in the big leagues in 2017, but I suspect management may be aggressive in bringing them up as early as 2018.

19 Responses to “Braves 8, Marlins 4”

  1. 1
    Td Says:

    The biggest pitching disappointment to me so far has been been Garcia. Given their ages, I was expecting at least one of Colon or Dickey to falter. Otoh, I haven’t been impressed with Garcia even when he hasn’t gotten shelled. Julio will be fine.

  2. 2
    coop Says:

    Great recap. Thank you.

  3. 3
    Td Says:

    Agreed on the great recap. I’m just surprised you can remember what Frankie Frisch said about walks, but you forgot what Ernie Johnson said. ;-)

    The Braves used to regularly call up players from AA. Who is the last person the Braves brought straight from AA before roster expansion?

  4. 4
    coop Says:

    Td: short term memory loss.

    As age advances, short term covers more and more. Stick around. You’ll find out.

  5. 5
    braves14 Says:

    3 — Swanson just last year, I think. They also called up Akeel Morris from Mississippi for one game. Morris is pitching well this year at Gwinnett and would be deserving of another promotion.

  6. 6
    Td Says:

    @4 – I may already be there. What post are you talking about? (-:

  7. 7
    Tfloyd Says:

    The two dominant pitchers at AA are both 19 (Allard and Soroka). They were in high school two years ago I can’t imagine they will get a call up this year. But if they remain dominant all year, do y’all think they will get a shot at being in the rotation next year as 20 year olds?

    I don’t remember the braves ever using a 19 year old pitcher. Steve Avery was barely 20 when he was called up. He got rocked that year but he was excellent the next as a 21 year old.

  8. 8
    Chief Nocahoma Says:

    If Allard were to finish the year at AA with a sub 2.00 ERA, I’d hope that he’d get strong consideration and a very long look in Spring Training. Eventually we need to find out if these guys can play.

  9. 9
    braves14 Says:

    I’m sure Allard in particular has a strict innings limit this season.

  10. 10
    braves14 Says:

    In his first Triple A start, Weigel went 7 IP with 3 ER, 7 H, 1 BB, 5 K.

  11. 11
    braves14 Says:

    If Ramirez is unavailable I think I would have stayed with Julio.

  12. 12
    JohnWDB Says:

    Are we sure Justin Bour isn’t Ryan Howard reincarnated? The results against the Braves (upper deck bombs) are indistinguishable

  13. 13
    Rob Cope Says:

    EOF, with an ERA near 7, enters in a high leverage situation. They’re tanking. I agree now.

  14. 14
    braves14 Says:

    So after I said Akeel Morris was deserving of a promotion, he went and blew the game and his ERA took a beating.

  15. 15
    tfloyd Says:

    Win, win, win.
    1–Julio is indeed fine.

  16. 16
    JohnWDB Says:

    Ronald Acuna could well be a top-10 overall prospect by year’s end.

  17. 17
    tfloyd Says:

    Speaking of youngsters, aggressive promotions, and possible early MLB call-ups, Acuna has two more hits tonight (including a triple) and just drove in tie-breaking run in the 9th with a bases loaded walk.
    And Demeritte (who has 2 hits and another HR tonight) immediately followed with his own bases loaded walk. “Oh, those bases on balls!”

  18. 18
    krussell Says:

    Two nice starts from Folty and Julio. When we pitch like that we look like a legitimate team.

  19. 19
    blazon Says:

    great recap, mine has now been posted to follow.

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