“Please lift up the bar and exit to your left. Thank you for riding on the Braves Rollercoaster”
Do you feel like you’re on the same ride I’m on? The Atlanta Braves seem to cause more heart attacks than a jumbo hot dog that’s served with chili after sitting in grease for two months. From all the playoff heartbreakers to the way they start every single season. Up and down. Occasionally, we’ll take a few turns. It’s a rollercoaster. The Braves won the first three of four games. Then they lost the next three of four games. They’ve won the first game of every series, except the Dodgers, then we struggle or lose the next two (or three).
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Did they put it all together against the Giants? Swept the world champions in three straight games. It’s still April, I know, but when you win a division by two or three, those games matter in April.
Next up is the Padres. They have the worst hitting in the league but one of the best pitching thus far. This should play as a low scoring series unless the Braves bats stay alive as they showed in the Giants series.
You know those rollercoasters that take a long and slow time to get to the top and then it hovers there for a while? (It gives you that great view and anticipation of the upcoming thrill.) I wonder if this is one of those rides. Will the Braves string off a few series wins before coming back to reality?
Anyway, let’s coast into my top concerns for the Atlanta Braves.
- Hitting – It’s still my number-one concern. They have a team batting average of .229 and an OBP of .302. Some teams have a higher batting average than our OBP. Yikes!
- Brooks Conrad – Everyone was excited when he got that first hit that snapped the hitless streak for pinch-hitters, pitchers and anyone else that batted in the nine hole in that God forsaken 0-for-50 stat. We’ll he hasn’t had another hit since then. Still one hit in 10 tries.
- Mendoza Warning – Alex Gonzalez is hitting .214 and Dan Uggla is hitting .182. Do I mention our bench Mendoza players? David Ross is hitting .214, Conrad is hitting .111, Matt Young is hitting .105 and Brandon Hicks hasn’t recorded a hit yet. How did we win 10 games so far?
- Chipper Jones’ Knee (no the other one) – It’s already made him miss a game and it’s not even his surgically repaired knee! How can you play with two bad knees? Didn’t Mike Piazza try that?
- Fredi Gonzalez – How often will he get bored and have a game like he had against the New York Mets?
So that’s all I have as far as concerns right now. The list is getting smaller. I guess a Giants sweep will do that, so it’s a good thing this list wasn’t created last week during the awful Dodgers series. I took off Freddie Freeman, Gonzalez and Nate McLouth for a couple of reasons. Gonzalez got moved to the Mendoza Warning. Freeman and McLouth are showing signs of life. It’s like they are feasting off each other at the bottom of the lineup. I believe they are at a different rollercoaster park than the Braves team.
I also took off Jair Jurrjens as he has been absolutely dominating opponents. Don’t worry though; his health will always keep him on the Suicide Watch. I also took off the bullpen weakness as well for the simple stat that the pitching ERA is at a customary 3.22. Don’t worry though, Sherrill and Linebrink will make the Suicide Watch as well. Want to know what or who else can blow up at any moment?
- Derek Lowe – We’re patiently waiting for a massacre.
- Chipper Jones’ body
- George Sherrill and Scott Linebrink – They will be back on my list, it’s just a matter of time.
- Jair Jurrjens’ health
- Mendoza Boys
Come on guys, what did I miss? Let me hear it.