Stirring stuff from the boys last night. It really is a shame the bullpen has been so bad because–all puffery from Powell et al aside–this team is immensely more fun to watch than last year’s somnolent crew of whiffers. They are playing pretty fine ball outside the relief corps.
Over the past 10 games, the Bravos have scored 59 runs and yet are just 5-5. The pen barfed leads in four of those five losses. Last night, the relievers pitched 3-plus scoreless frames. Maybe that can start a happy streak.
Speaking of streaks–don’t look, Ethel! Just kidding. Ray Stevens is a real buffoon.
Anyway, let’s hope Williams-with-an-S Perez does not put together consecutive bad starts this evening. One could suspect that his penchant for baserunners spells an eventual trip back up I-85 (to Gwinnett). In fact, CB thinks WP will be supplanted by Matt Wisler in the Braves’ rotation by the all-star break. It wouldn’t be a shock. Still, let’s hope Williams throws well and makes it a tough decision.
KJ returns tonight, which is nice. As Van pointed out, we’ve seen way too much of Gomes vs. righties in KJ’s absence. The long-ago Baby Brave will be joined tonight by: Peterson, Maybin, Freeman, Markakis, C. Johnson, KJ LF, Pierzynski, Simmons, Perez.
Final thought: Does anyone think the Padres might throw at Andrelton tonight after his slide into Norris? It didn’t look really dirty to me. Awkward, maybe. But certainly not vicious. Bud Black seemed to differ with me, though.
* Braves rooters of a certain vintage will recall the above shot of Whitson from the epic–truly–running brawl of 1984. Check out this shot of a lithe Pascual, looking like he’s about to get medieval on Terry Kennedy’s ass. Current Giants’ skipper Bruce Bochy was the backup backstop for the ’84 NL champ Padres.