Braves ONE! …barely.
Playoff blueprint: Last night’s game seems like a possible blueprint for the postseason — dominant starting pitching and a solo home run. Cliff Lee had the Braves number, pitching brilliantly with 13 strikeouts and just 3 hits. Luckily Kris Medlen found his 2012 form and was equal parts dominant and crafty. That’s your game-one starting pitcher, folks.
The Braves used a dominant pitching philosophy throughout the 90s, but they relied on a balanced offense that was more about manufacturing runs than swinging for the fences. This year’s Braves squad will try a slightly different approach to that 90s recipe — the pitching is still dominant, but the offense is not built to manufacture runs one at a time, but instead built for the 3-run home run. We’ll see soon enough if that works.
Braves minor league players of the year: The winners will sign autographs today at Turner Field in the Fan Plaza from 5:20 to 6:20. Here are the recipients for each level, with the player of the year listed first, then the pitcher of the year.
Organization: Josh Elander OF, Lucas Sims RHP
Gwinnett: Joey Terdoslavich OF, David Hale RHP
Mississippi: Tommy LaStella 2B, Gus Schlosser RHP
Lynchburg: Robby Hefflinger OF, Williams Perez RHP
Rome: Jose Peraza SS, Shae Simmons RHP
Danville: Victor Caratini 3B, Andrew Waszak RHP
GCL: Victor Reyes OF, Oriel Caicedo LHP
DSL: Kelvin Estevez OF, Felix Falcon LHP
Many of these guys are listed and reviewed on my top-30 prospect list, which you can find here.
Really Uggla: Rowland’s Office gives us the unfortunate statistical lump of coal that Dan Uggla has become:
Congrats to the Braves’ highest-paid player, who broke his own team record, set in 2012, for most K’s in a season: 170. And he did it in 78 less AB’s!
That’s not the only record Uggla is chasing. Tonight’s 0-fer dropped his BA to .179, which would tie Rob Deer‘s mark, set in 1991, for the lowest average ever for a hitter with 20 HR. Deer hit three more homers that year than Uggla has in 2013, struck out five more times and had a better OBP, but Dan’s got the former Tigers slugger beat in salary: $13 mil to $1.96 mil.