Thursday, September 29, 2011

12 comments About last night...

That was fucking awesome. For all the hating on sports journalism we do around here, and all the analysis and analysis of analysis, sometimes it's great to just watch something that is a once in a lifetime occurance. Let me taste your tears Bill Simmons, your tears taste so yummy and sweet! Enjoy the playoffs, while I talk Ben off a bridge from his Braves blowing this.


Bengoodfella said...

You say awesome and I say it was miserable. Of course I knew the Braves had lost the game at 5:30pm when the lineup was released. Matt Diaz was in the lineup and not on a bus to wherever the fuck he needs to be instead.

Fredi Gonzalez wanted to prove his horrendousness one last time. He started Diaz b/c Blanton has a reverse split and RH hitters hit him well. WHO GIVES A FLYING FUCK IF MATT DIAZ CAN'T HIT A RH PITCHER TO SAVE HIS LIFE? THAT DOESN'T MATTER AT ALL, DOES IT? This is what happens when a manager thinks outside the box and he's too stupid to do so.

Fredi Gonzalez is not to blame for the entire collapse, but in this individual game he let Diaz hit against a RH pitcher and then put Heyward in RF. Again, he let Diaz, a RH hitter (who OPS'd .550 against RH pitchers this year) hit against a RH pitcher and then put a LH hitter, in as a defensive replacement. Fredi blows my fucking mind, it's so awesome.

Those moves set the tone for the night, ending with the "Gonzalez worked Kimbrel until his arm fell off earlier in the year" reminder when Kimbrel couldn't find the plate. THEN Fredi waited until Kimbrel had blown the game to bring in another reliever. THEN Scott Linebrink wasn't forcefully removed from the stadium prior to the game so he ended up on the pitcher's mound.

I shouldn't complain, but I really, really miss Bobby Cox.

Murray said...

As a Sox fan I'm with Ben on this miserable!

Bengoodfella said...

Murray, when I start cursing in caps it is near the end of the rope for me. I blame Gonzalez too much when there is plenty of blame to go around.

It's not so bad the actual collapse, but it is the discussion of the collapse and people asking me about it.

conshy matt said...

Ben, tough one Chief. You hang in there, Sporto. It's gonna be allright, Kid. Get em next year, Pal.

Two EPIC collapses in the same day. As a Phils fan it was all wholly enjoyable. i can't say that i feel sorry the the Braves (i feel for you a bit though Ben).

I must admit that the Cardinals weren't my ideal first round matchup, but if the Phils play their best it really shouldn't matter who they play.

Why did Fredi pitch to Pence with Martinez on deck?

Bengoodfella said...

Matt, I don't expect you to feel bad for me. I'm not Bill Simmons and expect sympathy. The Braves sucked and deserved to lose b/c the Cardinals played lights-out at the end of the year.

I had the Phils in the WS at the beginning of the year and I still feel good about that. The only thing that makes me feel somewhat good is I had the Cards winning the Central b/c I didn't give up on them after the Wainwright injury. Still, I wasn't exactly right about that since they won the Wild Card instead and it still sucks.

He won't say. He was asked that question today and ended the interview. He doesn't have the balls to manage in the majors. That's a question he has to answer even if he doesn't want to. My big question is why pull Kimbrel after he gives up the tying run? Why let him walk batters and then remove him once the damage is already done?

J.S. said...

I have to say Diax not.being able to hit.righties is up there with Thames as one of the most notorious platoon splits in baseball. It's been known by everyone for at least five years.

Arjun Chandrasekhar said...

im really sorry for you ben - i grew up watching the braves on tbs, and they definitely have a special place in my heart even if they aren't my favorite team, so i feel awful for braves fans.

but overall this is a great day for sports. Caroline's tears could not taste sweeter. fuck you bill simmons and the same to you dan shaughnessy - now i will go back and read all your "boston is the center of the sports universe and omfg our red sawx are so fucking good and we are the greatest team evah!!" and laugh. and laugh. and laugh and laugh and laugh, september 28 should be national baseball day, and the entire country except for new england gets the day off. fuck boston and fuck the sox, and i take back every bad thing that i ever said about the sport of baseball.

J.S. said...

This really is a very "baseball" thing. Every sport has it's good and bad points, but of all sports, none is closer to the ethos of "anything can happen" as baseball. I really didn't think we'd have any races this year at all, and scoreboard watching is so cool in MLB. Always reminded me of like, those 70's Batman/Legion of Doom etc live action comics - MEANWHILE, IN ATLANTA!

I will also say, Andino doing this, and the insane comebacks and so on, like the Seattle win over the Saints, and Dallas over Miami, does reinforce there is something occult and abstract in sports that can't be summed up by cold, statistical analysis - and no one loves such analysis more than me, but we should remember there is some "guts like" intangible at work too, at least a little, and at least sometimes.

J.S. said...

I also think you have to concede, as a neutral fan, like I am, that this was a very bad day for the 2 wild card proposal, as illustrated here;

rich said...


What makes it so gut wrenching is that both 2-2 pitches in the ninth were right there. I honestly thought both had struck out. It sucks that the ump gave low and away to the pitchers but really squeezed the pitchers on the outside corner.

I know this isn't any consolation, but with the young pitchers the Braves have, I'm sure they'll erase this year quickly. That and maybe getting a new manager who can make the tough decisions. I mean they had the second best record in the NL for like three months, which is a great sign for a young team.

Bengoodfella said...

Rich, I noticed that too. The problem is w/ how wild Kimbrel was he wasn't going to get the benefit of that call. I didn't enjoy the outside corner calls but at least it was consistent. I'm not even mad a/b the ball at 3rd on Bourn stealing. He had no reason to steal there and should have stayed put.

I'm not going to rant like a whiny baby, but we've been rebuilding with young players since 2005. We need the young pitchers to actually stay healthy for a change. That would be nice. It's just crazy how it was the young players who got injured and the older guys were durable.

It's no excuse, but as of last week rookies had pitched 59% of the innings for the Braves in September. This leads to more bullpen work when rookie starters don't last as long in starts and an already overworked (I don't care what others say, Venters/Kimbrel weren't the same over the last month) bullpen suffering more. Throw in some crap offense and you have yourself a bonafide collapse. It actually makes me feel good we can pinpoint the cause.

I hope we have a bright future, but I will enjoy the day when the Braves actually win the division rather than talk about how good they will be in 2-3 years. Re-signing Bourn is a must and doing something to get Heyward back on track is as well.

Fredi Gonzalez is over his head as well right now. His handling of the lineup and bullpen were fireable offenses if you asked me. I'm not saying they should fire him, because they shouldn't, but another year of this and I can't see him staying around. I just hope he hasn't destroyed Kimbrel b/c he was pretty down after the game.

Enough of an autopsy on the season, but I am tired of hearing how good the future is because I have heard it for 6 years now. I want to win now because other teams in the division are improving as well.

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