Despite seven innings of impressive pitching from Julio Teheran, the Braves dropped their mid-week matchup with the Dodgers in a game in which the bats fell flat. The Braves recorded just three hits, all off of starter Dodgers' starter Mike Bolsinger. His seven innings effectively shut down Atlanta, who's lone run came off of a Cameron Maybin RBI single in the third inning.
ESPN's Keith Law, the renowned guru on prospects, released his mid-season farm system rankings and what do you know, the Braves are right near the top at No. 2. This of course is mostly thanks to several off-season trades which saw the likes of Matt Wisler, Tyrell Jenkins and Max Fried among others enter the system. Add in a strong draft just last month, and the youth isn't looking too bad.
While the Braves now sit five games under .500 at 45-50, they're just 6.5 games out of the second wild card spot in the National League. While those standings may not be ideal, it shows that the Braves aren't completely out of it yet. Who's to thank? The pitching, first in foremost. With Freddie Freeman on the shelf, it's no surprise that the offense has struggled. Thankfully for the Braves, the pitchers have stepped their game up. Before Wednesday, Atlanta's pitchers have averaged a 3.36 ERA in the past 29 outings. Not too shabby. Now, if the offense can just wake up, that 6.5 gap between Atlanta and the second wild card spot may not seem so large.
Bleacher Report released a piece looking at potential moves for every contender (spoiler alert: the Braves were not listed among the contenders, but one of their players was). Zachary D. Rymer writs that Cameron Maybin is a sensible fit for the San Francisco Giants, who are looking to add to their outfield. Maybin's name has been tossed around in trade rumors, so seeing him go back to California ma not be the craziest thing.
I'm no baseball expert, but this seems good? In a double-header against the Cubs, Cincinnati's Joey Votto reached base nine times in the two games. He went 5-for-6, with four walks. He went 3-for-4 with a walk in the first game, and 2-for-2 with three walks in the nightcap.
When Albert Pujols signed a monstrous $240 million contract with the Los Angeles Angels following the 2011 season, many critics believed that he would never come close to living up to the money. And for the first few years of the deal, it looked like those critics were right. Pujols looked like a shell of his former self in the first few years as an Angel, and it left many laughing at the amount of money Anaheim invested in him. But come 2015, the Machine is back: He's slashing .262/.328/.551 with 29 home runs and 60 RBI.