The heroes have a chance to split this afternoon and face a not-too-daunting pitcher in Roberto Hernandez. He used to be Fausto Carmona.
Aaron Harang is still Aaron Harang. That has been mostly a good thing for the Bravos this season. Fredi tinkers with the lineup today, which is perhaps overdue when you are above the National League average in only one of 15 offensive categories. That one is walks, surprisingly. In everything else—runs, hits, batting average, on base percentage, OPS, home runs, doubles slugging, you name it—the Braves are below average in a down year for offense.
Shocking news, I know.
On the bright side, it sure felt good to win one last night, even if Kimbrel made it tense late. At five games back, the division, me thinks, is over and I’m now focused on the wild card chase. We’re 2.5 games back there, with the Pirates, Cardinals and Giants ahead and the Reds, Marlins and, believe it or not, Padres and Mets not too far behind.
Baseball Prospectus says the Braves have a 24 percent chance of making the postseason. The Cardinals, at 60 percent, are the team we trail for the second WC slot by 2.5 games. BP gives the Giants a slightly better shot at the postseason than the Cards, even though the Cards are a half-game up on them. Must have to do with the remaining schedule, I suppose.
Today’s lineup: J Hey, Bonifacio (8),Freeman, J Upton, Johnson, La Stella, Simmons, Laird, Harang.