81 games have been played at SunTrust Park this season, which means that the home part of the Braves’ 2017 season has come to an end. Unfortunately it ended on a losing note as the Phillies picked up a 2-0 win over the Braves. Maikel Franco hit a home run to put Philly in front in the fifth inning and they never relinquished the lead.
The loss took a bit of attention off the fact that Luiz Gohara had another good outing on the mound, and this was arguably his best outing yet. He went seven innings, struck out nine, and the homer he gave up to Franco was the only run he gave up. Zach Dillard of Fox Sports South thinks that this should be enough for Gohara to have the inside track on a spot in 2018’s rotation.
Depending on if (and how) the Braves add to their rotation options this offseason, Gohara could find himself battling the likes of Max Fried and Lucas Sims for one or two spots. Add a frontline starter and Gohara is battling for the fifth and final spot. Add two pitchers — either through trade, free agency or exercising R.A. Dickey’s 2018 option — and Gohara could open the season in Triple-A or the bullpen, following in the footsteps of reliever-to-starter paths likes Julio Teheran and Mike Foltynewicz.
From the current perspective, the 21-year-old southpaw does not look like a Triple-A or bullpen arm. He looks like a staff shoo-in. He has ridiculous stuff from the left side and, of all the late-season promotions, he clearly boasts the best numbers. Go ahead and reserve a spot for one of baseball's most promising young arms
Speaking of 2018, John Coppolella was recently interviewed by Mark Bradley of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and as usual, the GM of the Braves was very candid in his comments. He covered plenty of topics (even though I doubt that the Joel de la Cruz’s and Jake Brigham’s of the baseball world would be thrilled with the last part of this interview), but one of the biggest takeaways is that it appears that Coppolella is ready to go with a younger squad for next season.
Speaking of youngsters, our friends over at Minor League Ball decided to take a look at a few Braves prospects that have been flying under the radar when compared to the the other prospects who have received more attention as they make their way up the ranks of the organization. It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on guys like these because, hey, who saw Johan Camargo and his 1.5 fWAR rookie season coming?
Baseball always brings up a few shocks, and the season that the Arizona Diamondbacks had is one of them. They went from being seen as at best a mediocre team and at worst a laughingstock following some bad trades (with our favorite baseball team around here), but now the D-Backs are laughing after they punched their ticket for at least one October game this year. Our friends at AZ Snake Pit are clearly thrilled with the season they’ve had.
This is a major turnaround for a team which won only 69 games last year, and needed a last-day win to avoid the second pick in this year’s draft. Many, many kudos are due to rookie General Manager Mike Hazen and rookie manager Torey Lovullo, for their parts in helping engineer such a spectacular change in fortunes. Even if the post-season were to last only one game, this will still have been one of, if not the best Diamondbacks campaign in SnakePit history.
Sunday afternoon was the final day of the home season for the Toronto Blue Jays, and it was also very likely the final home game for Jose Bautista as a member of the Blue Jays. Bautista joined the Jays at the tail end of the 2008 season and was basically the face of the franchise for the majority of his time there. Plus, he became a Canadian hero during the 2015 ALDS against the Texas Rangers, so you know that Blue Jays fans are going to miss this guy.