Any positive momentum that the Braves may have had after winning four straight series came to a screeching halt after they left San Diego with a series loss. The rubber game of the series was 100% in control of the Padres from start to finish, as Jaime Garcia had a bad start against San Diego. It sure didn’t help that the offense was dead on arrival, and Matt Adams also had to leave the game after fouling a ball off of his foot. All in all, this was another forgettable trip to Petco Park.
Wednesday night’s start for Bartolo Colon was his last chance to show that he could provide some value to the Braves this season. Unfortunately, Colon got rocked by the Padres and then the Braves DFA’d him the next day. There are reports that the Mets are interested in a reunion, and I say “Good luck with all of that.”
Two of the Braves’ brightest prospects will be going to Miami for the All-Star festivities, as Mike Soroka and Ronald Acuna have both been named to World Team for the Futures Game. As Eric noted in the article, those two have been having a blast at the Double-A level so far, so it’ll be interesting to see what they’ll do with this chance to showcase their skills against other budding stars.
Meanwhile, Bradford Doolittle of ESPN decided to give his opinion on how he feels the “clear rebuilding” teams are doing so far this season. Of course, teams like the Rays and Brewers who are actually in the mix for the playoffs are given high marks, but where did he put the Braves? He had nice things to say, but the Braves didn’t come in too high on this particular list.
Unfortunately, with Washington running away with the NL East and three strong teams residing in the NL West, a .500-ish record doesn't translate to playoff contention for Atlanta the way it would in the AL, which puts the Braves squarely in sell mode as the trade deadline approaches.
Rookie Dansby Swanson hasn't exploded out of the gate as some thought he might, but he's still the every-day shortstop and lately has looked like a player ready to take off. Meanwhile, center fielder Ender Inciarte, who came to the Braves along with Swanson from Arizona in the Shelby Miller trade, has blossomed at the plate in the new ballpark while putting himself on the short list of best defensive players in the majors. Along with Freeman, that gives Atlanta three lineup fixtures for years to come.
Speaking of the playoffs, the Braves aren’t completely dead when it comes to that particular conversation. It’s still a longshot in my opinion, but the 1991 Braves would tell you that the Braves shouldn’t give up with the way the standings look right now. However, I still decided give an update of sorts on a piece that I wrote about the Braves’ playoff chances back in March. It’s possible, but it’s not probable in my eyes.
Hoo boy, Thursday was not good for the Nationals. For starters, they lost Trea Turner for a significant period of time after he got hit in the wrist. As it turns out, his wrist is fractured and while there’s no timetable as of the time I’m writing this, I’d imagine that he’ll probably be out for a couple of months. Later on, the Nats lost their sixth game that they were leading after the eighth inning. It’s a clear problem for Washington and they’ll have to fix it or they’ll be heading towards yet another Divisional Series exit.
MLB debuts are supposed to be exciting occasions, but I’d imagine that Dustin Fowler will probably want to forget what happened as soon as possible. The game started at 11 PM ET, and by the time the bottom of the first rolled around, poor Fowler injured himself running into the right field wall in foul territory. It’s a huge bummer as you never want to see a serious injury like this — let alone for a guy who was making his major league debut. Here’s hoping he makes a speedy recovery!