Braves end season at home with a win
The Atlanta Braves have not lived up to any expectations this year. From a destroyed starting rotation to an unreliable bullpen, and a roller coaster offense, Atlanta has not gotten the job done. Despite a disappointing season, the Braves were able to give the home crowd a much desired series win. The Mets came to town to try and find a way into the postseason. Atlanta greatly hurt their chances.
New York’s offense was too much for youngster Jo-Jo Reyes in game 1. Reyes lasted only 3 and 1/3 innings while allowing 5 earned runs and 2 homers. Reyes has the stuff to be in the majors, he just simply isn’t executing. Bobby Cox has shown faith in him throughout his young career. Cox however has begun to crack. Reyes has not made any progress all year and Cox has started showing signs of frustration. With terrible opposing pitching, the Mets cruised to an easy 9-5 victory.
Jorge Campillo put in a quality start for the Braves in game 2. Campillo limited the Mets to 2 runs on 5 hits in 6 innings of work. Atlanta’s bullpen was excellent the rest of the way. Both Will Ohman and Jeff Bennett pitched well as the bridge from Campillo to Mike Gonzalez. Gonzalez notched his 12th save in a perfect 9th inning. Kelly Johnson has continued his hot play. He has been tearing up the opposing pitching with 30 hits so far in the month of September. Josh Anderson has also continued to impress while going 3-4 from the leadoff stop. Anderson has been great since recently being called up. If this continues there is no doubt that he will be roaming center field next year for Atlanta. Both Anderson and Johnson helped lead the Braves to a 2-4 victory in game 2.
Game 3 started out terrible for the Braves. James Parr was horrible. He lasted just 1 and 2/3 of an inning while allowing 4 earned runs. This should not discourage him as the 4 runs he allowed in game 3 accounted for half of his total over 4 starts. Parr is 1-0 with a 4.00 ERA since making his MLB debut. Parr has been a little on the wild side, with 8 walks in 18 innings pitched. On the other hand he has struck out 14 batters in those 18 innings. He is young and there is still so much to see from this young hurler. A strong effort from the bullpen allowed Atlanta to retake the lead in the 8th inning and steal a 7-6 victory. Jeff Francoeur sparked the offense, going 3-4 with a RBI triple.
The postseason may not visit Atlanta this year, but things look good for the future. The Braves has a ton of young kids that may be great some day. Brian McCann is already one of if not the best catcher in the National League. Jeff Francoeur has so much potential it isn’t fair. Josh Anderson may be one of the fastest players in all of baseball, while Charlie Morton and James Parr could be the next Smoltz and Maddux. Atlanta’s best prospects may not even be in the majors yet. That is what makes thinking of next year so exciting. Having a terrible season this year, could pay off next year. We will have to wait and see.
But before next season can start, you have to finish this year. The Philadelphia Phillies will try to beat up on the Braves at Citizens Bank Park. Jair Jurrjens (13-10) will take on J.A. Happ (1-0) in game 1. Jurrjens has shown signs of fatigue as he has already thrown 40 more innings then all of last year. Game 2 is set to see Jo-Jo Reyes (3-11) face Cole Hamels (14-9). Maybe Hamels will get sick and the Braves can get off easy. James Parr (1-0) is the likely candidate to pitch game 3 against Brett Myers (10-12). Parr has stumbled some since starting off his young career in amazing fashion.
By Ben Burrows
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