There’s an upside to being 30 games under .500. I got three lower-level tickets, section 123, for today for $6 each on StubHub. Ah, supply and demand and the Internet and a rebuilding–are we officially rebuilding yet?–ball club.
Casting an eye back to one of the few seasons worse than this one, a 21-year-old John Smoltz would pitch creditably but take the loss as the soon-to-be World Series champ Dodgers blanked the Braves 2-0 behind a two-run homer by Mike Scioscia and solid pitching by John Tudor. I’ll admit I had forgotten he pitched for LA. Future Braves’ post-game show person Howell got his 19th save.
Smoltz would pitch 5-plus that day and be relieved by Omni peanut vendor Ed Olwine and Jose Alvarez. If I’m not mistaken, Alvarez would have been the Opening Day starter for the Replacement Braves had it come to that.
Our heroes limped into Chavez Ravine that night at 49-93. That would be 6.5 games worse than this year’s Braves! Good Lord. Perhaps reflecting the quality of opposition, only 22,000-plus showed up at Dodger Stadium, surely among the smallest crowds in a season when the Dodgers drew 2.98 million.
The visitors’ lineup that day: Gant 2B, Lonnie LF, Perry 1B, Murph RF, Thomas SS, Morrison 3B, Benedict, Blocker, Smoltzie.
Today’s lineup: Markakis, Castro 2B, Freddie, Garcia LF, Olivera, Simmons, Bethancourt, Bourn, Weber. The Mets are sending out the B-team — no Wright, Cespedes or d’Arnaud. Probably won’t matter.
Finally, it’s just sad about the organist being censored. Even the most benign snark is off limits at Turner Field. Fuck Liberty Media and its local myrmidons.