May 5, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Aaron Harang (34) pitches in the first inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Braves News: Morning Chop and Box Score 8/20

Baseball Reference

Tomahawk Take Editor’s Notes:  Aaron Harang almost completed a complete game for the Braves on Tuesday.  Fredi, I guess was trying to save him bullpen, sent him back out there in the ninth inning but was able to get only one out.  He finished the game with giving up three runs off nine hits and had four strikeouts…and no walks!  The lineup seems to be on fire right now so if you jumped off the bandwagon, it’s time to jump back on it.  

Jason Heyward RF 6 1 2 3 0 0 6 .269 .351 .388 .739
Philip Gosselin 2B 5 1 1 0 0 2 5 .286 .286 .371 .657
Freddie Freeman 1B 3 1 2 0 2 1 5 .296 .386 .491 .877
Justin Upton LF 4 1 2 5 1 0 5 .287 .363 .522 .884
Chris Johnson 3B 5 1 0 0 0 2 5 .274 .298 .382 .680
Evan Gattis C 5 2 2 1 0 0 5 .277 .330 .516 .846
Andrelton Simmons SS 3 2 1 0 1 0 4 .252 .299 .345 .644
   Ramiro Pena SS 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 .226 .294 .331 .625
B.J. Upton CF 5 2 2 1 0 1 5 .209 .279 .332 .611
Aaron Harang P 4 0 1 1 0 3 5 .083 .102 .083 .185
   David Hale P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .063 .059 .063 .121
Team Totals 41 11 14 11 4 9 46 .341 .400 .537 .937
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 8/20/2014.
Aaron Harang, W (10-7) 8.1 9 3 3 0 4 0 3.50
David Hale 0.2 0 0 0 0 0 0 3.01
Team Totals 9 9 3 3 0 4 0 3.00
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 8/20/2014.



Braves roll to fifth straight win with rout of Bucs

Tomahawk Take Editor’s Notes:  Baseball is a lot more enjoyable when the Braves are winning games.  That’s five in a row for Atlanta…but to be a debbie downer, the Washington Nationals also won on Tuesday – the Nats haven’t lost since the Braves beat them, winning eight straight games.  The Braves still sit six games behind Washington for the NL East crown and are currently tied for the second wildcard spot with the Giants.

As the suddenly vibrant and rejuvenated Braves have rolled through their competition over the past few days, it’s hard to imagine that this is the same group that appeared lethargic and destined for doom last week.

But with Jason Heyward providing a spark in the leadoff role and Justin Upton in the midst of one of his patented hot streaks, the Braves now find themselves blazing through a impressive stretch that was extended with Tuesday night’s 11-3 thrashing of the Pirates at PNC Park.

“It’s nice to string together a few nice games and be at ease and have some fun again,” said Heyward, who drove in three runs as the Braves notched their first streak of at least five games since July 5 while distancing themselves from their recent miseries.



Projecting Craig Kimbrel’s legacy

Tomahawk Take Editor’s Notes:  Craig Kimbrel is one of the best closers Major League Baseball will probably ever see…at least in our life time, we’ve seen a few.  Kimbrel is only 26-years-old and has already notched 176 saves.  Mariano Rivera was the best closer and Kimbrel still has many more steps to match his numbers.

Of course, saves do not tell the whole story. He’s healthy and goes a lot of innings for a closer in today’s game. Here’s somebody who blows batters away with a fastball that can touch 100 miles an hour. He shows his dominance, striking out far many more batters than he walks. He’s not the person a slugger wants to face, giving up just 11 home runs in his career and only a single big fly in 2014. Kimbrel is also way ahead of the game. Already at 26, he’s converted 176 saves, the most in Braves history. All time saves leader Mariano Rivera didn’t get his very first save until he was 26. Trevor Hoffman, whose career saves record Rivera broke, didn’t get his first save until age 25 and Hoffman was the first closer to reach both 500 and 600 saves.

Rivera is generally considered the greatest closer of all time. Certainly, there are many reasons behind such a belief. It’s more than just his longevity, holding the all time saves record, having the highest career ERA+ of 205 and a 1.000 WHIP. Rivera was one of the biggest reasons why the New York Yankees had so much postseason success when he was there, and with him growing himself as a postseason legend, he helped move himself forward as the consensus best reliever ever. His regular season dominance speaks for itself, but it seems to be that his playoff dominance also played a part in his immortality.


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