The Braves could have played better last night, but not that much. Had just one or two things gone the Braves way it would have been a much closer game. Kershaw is the most dominant pitcher in baseball, so no one should be surprised that the Braves only managed one run off him. McCann just missed a home run.
Andrelton grounded one down the third base line with a runner on second. In super slow motion the ball appeared to go over the bag. Cal Ripken was right about Simmons not needing to overplay hitters, though the balls he couldn't get to were hard hit balls.
Had Gattis stayed close to first base and Puig not caught the ball, he would've been out at second. Gattis guessed wrong. No one praised Gattis for going first to third last night, but when Puig did it the announcers talked about it for five minutes. While the announcer braced for a clutch hit, Jordan Walden made Puig look foolish - striking out the overanxious rookie without giving him anything to hit. Aside from the Puig lovefest, the TBS announcers were fair.
The Atlanta crowd did a good job making noise. The few empty seats were in the far upper corners of the upper deck. No one ever mentions how fans with seats instead crowd into the Chop House. Hopefully the crowd will be as good today, or better.
I'm between books on CD, so I heard 680's Perry Laurentino call the loss "decimating," pointing out all the Braves strikeouts and Medlen's failures, hardly mentioning the brilliance of Clayton Kershaw and Brian Wilson. But in describing the other NLDS, Perry gushed about Adam Wainwright's dominance and did not mention the same old Pirate failures. Perry blamed Fredi for not playing BJ and Uggla "every day" to give them every chance to return to form, saying BJ had no chance against Kershaw because it was "his first at-bat in eight days." Not mentioned: Chris Johnson hadn't batted in five days, and he ripped a line drive single. McCann hadn't batted in seven days, and he did ok. Had Fredi kept playing BJ and Uggla every day the Nationals might've passed the Braves. Just Thursday morning Chipper had told the 680 morning crew in detail why Fredi was right to bench BJ and Uggla. This is why I don't listen to 680.
Perry also said the Falcons should sign Buccaneer castoff QB Josh Freeman to back up Matt Ryan, in case of injury. Christopher Rude correctly pointed out that the cost may be prohibitive and other interested teams could offer playing time, so Perry changed the subject. But should Ryan get hurt Laurentino will be crying "Check the tape! I told you back when Freeman was available that the Falcons should've signed him!" After a few minutes I had to change the channel.
A teenager I know only quotes Bible verses, Christian songs, and posts his drawings on Facebook – until the Dodgers are beating the Braves. The kid was born in Southern California but moved to Atlanta as an infant. He failed to mention that the Dodgers payroll was over 2-1/2 times the Braves payroll.
Wednesday night I walked into the stinky Kroger and saw Robert (aka "The Chief" at Braves games). Usually he keeps his head down while he works, and I have to speak before he notices me. That had been the case when I saw him Tuesday around 6 pm. But Wednesday he saw me walking in and beamed "Did you see me on Fox 5 news last night?" Right after I saw him Tuesday he got off work and took off to the pep rally at the Lindbergh Taco Mac, where the cameraman followed him around.