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Colby Wilson’s Braves Report: Out of the Desert

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – It was hard not to feel as though Christmas had come early when news of the Shelby Miller deal broke.

A Dansby Swanson? All for me? And an Aaron Blair for my pitching collection? And wow… an Ender Inciarte! I’ve never had one of those! Oh here, I got you a Shelby Miller… slightly used. Hmm, I feel kinda bad about that now. Want a gift card?

If I knew any Diamonbacks fans, I probably would’ve felt bad for them. They’ve now mortgaged three first-round picks—including Swanson, the No. 1 overall in 2015—and a legitimately exciting defensive outfielder for Shelby Miller, a marginal pitching prospect and the right not to pay Bronson Arroyo any more money. The franchise is going for it, which is an exciting phrase to hear—it was also the same phrase Braves fans heard when Atlanta acquired the Upton’s, and that didn’t turn out all that well.

The Atlanta Braves trade pitcher Shelby Miller to the Arizona Diamondbacks for outfielder Ender Inciarte along with minor-league prospects Dansby Swanson and Aaron Blair. (Brett Davis-  USA TODAY Sports)

The Atlanta Braves trade pitcher Shelby Miller to the Arizona Diamondbacks for outfielder Ender Inciarte along with minor-league prospects Dansby Swanson and Aaron Blair. (Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports)

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: The Circle of Life

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – Yeah it sucks.

No matter what happens in the future, this much is irrefutable: the Atlanta Braves traded the best defensive player—not shortstop, not infielder, player—since Ozzie Smith, as he was reaching his prime, for wishes. Maybe those wishes can be granted and maybe they can’t; that’s for the genie and the Braves minor-league instructors to sort out.

Two years ago, Braves fans could say unequivocally, regardless of how good or bad the team as a whole was playing, that they could watch Andrelton Simmons play shortstop like a god and Craig Kimbrel be the best closer in the world. And we got to do that all the time. Now we don’t, and it sucks.

Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) hits a walk off single against the Toronto Blue Jays in the ninth inning at Turner Field. The Braves defeated the Blue Jays 3-2. (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) hits a walk off single against the Toronto Blue Jays in the ninth inning at Turner Field. The Braves defeated the Blue Jays 3-2. (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: Closing Time

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – The 2015 regular season has whimpered to a close. Let’s hand out some fake awards for an Atlanta Braves season that was all too real.

The Jermaine Dye Award for best season by a former Brave: This seems like one of those insanely stacked categories like the 1994 Best Picture Oscar nominees. In fact, lets draw some half-cocked parallels between baseball players and 20-year old movies!

Forrest Gump: Gets all the headlines and maybe (maybe!) it’s not the best, only everyone gets irrationally mad at you for suggesting that? Oh, this is so Justin Upton.

Four Weddings and a Funeral: Everybody always seems to forget about this movie… kinda like everyone forgets that Mark Teixeira used to play for the Braves.

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Shelby Miller (17) pitches against the New York Mets during the second inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Shelby Miller (17) pitches against the New York Mets during the second inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: Simba Stagnation

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – It’s easy to fly under the radar when you play on a team hell-bent on losing 100 games. The talented players tend to get the benefit of the doubt—Shelby Miller didn’t pitch perfectly in every one of those starts he was unable to win, just most of them, but you wouldn’t know that from listening to Chip and Joe—and the…less…talented guys bear the brunt of the blame (I can only imagine Fredi Gonzalez’s whole spiel to keep his job will be, “Whaddya want from me? I thought you were going to give me real ballplayers to coach.”)

Even so, I’m a little discouraged at Andrelton Simmons’ development.

(DEEEEEEP breaths, everybody. It’s not all bad, I promise. Andrelton Simmons is my favorite current Brave. Of course, he’s one of only like, three, that I recognize, but still, this is hard on me too.)

Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) tags out New York Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores (4) on a steal attempt during the second inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) tags out New York Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores (4) on a steal attempt during the second inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

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Nashville Sounds jump out early in 9-2 win at Iowa Cubs

 

Joey Wendle Records Team-Best Eighth Three-Hit Game of Season

Nashville SoundsDes Moines, IA – The Nashville Sounds never trailed and cruised to a 9-2 victory over the Iowa Cubs on Friday night at Principal Park.

The Sounds pounded I-Cubs starter Felipe Paulino early and often on Friday night, forcing the right-hander to surrender six runs on 59 pitches through two frames. Nashville loaded the bases for their cleanup man, Jason Pridie, who worked a six-pitch walk to open the scoring in the first.

Next batter Jake Smolinski drove Joey Wendle in on a sacrifice fly and Rangel Ravelo stepped to the plate. The Oakland Athletics’ prospect delivered, recording his first career Triple-A triple, giving Nashville a 4-0 lead.

Nashville Sounds grab lead early, cruise to victory against Iowa Cubs Friday night.

Nashville Sounds grab lead early, cruise to victory against Iowa Cubs Friday night.

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: Arms Racing

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – As I’m writing this, the Braves are imploding against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Actually, that’s not an accurate assessment of the situation. The Braves bullpen took a three-run lead into the bottom of the seventh on Wednesday night in Tampa and turned it into a three-run deficit in about four seconds. Matt Marksberry is looking, well, like a guy who was in A-ball to start the season—no shame on him either, that’s just what the situation calls for now.

It’s not fair to him that he has to play above his ski’s right now, but there’s just not much left in the cupboard. No Jason Grilli. No Jim Johnson. No Luis Avilan. If Arodys Vizcaino and Andrew McKirahan are the class of your bullpen, that doesn’t speak volumes so much as shout them, Lewis Black-style, from a mountaintop of crap, inexperience and ineptitude.

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Matt Marksberry (66) throws a pitch during the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Matt Marksberry (66) throws a pitch during the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

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Nashville Sounds host Memphis Redbirds at First Tennessee Park for Weekend Series

 

Faith Night Concert and Girl Scout Night Highlight Sounds Five-Game Homestand With Cross-State Rival Redbirds

Nashville SoundsNashville, TN – Beginning on Wednesday August 5th, the Nashville Sounds will commence a five-game homestand with cross-state rival Memphis (Triple-A St. Louis Cardinals). The Redbirds currently lead the Tennessee Lottery I-40 Cup Series, 6-5.

The Sounds have some exciting events coming up, including a Back-to-School Backpack giveaway, Girls Scout Night, Faith Night Concert and Fox 17 Friday Night Firework show.

First Tennessee Park

First Tennessee Park

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: Maestro, if you please…

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN For Fredi and John in ‘15
A sense they needed to glean
From CJ and JT
Miller and CB
Are they to be part of the dream?


Bethancourt is now with Gwinnett
He’s clearly not ready yet
He can’t hit a lick
His fielding’s not slick
Pierzynski (!) looks like a much better bet

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Alex Wood (40) delivers a pitch to a Los Angeles Dodgers batter in the sixth inning of their game at Turner Field. (Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Alex Wood (40) delivers a pitch to a Los Angeles Dodgers batter in the sixth inning of their game at Turner Field. (Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports)

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Colby Wilson’s Atlanta Braves Report: Checking it Twice

 

Atlanta BravesClarksville, TN – If you made a checklist entitled ‘Worst Ways for a Professional Baseball Team to enter/exit the All-Star Break’, let’s see how your 2015 Atlanta Braves might have fared:

  • Go to a hitter’s park, fail to hit.

Four games in hitter’s haven Colorado – 11 total runs. So… check.

  • Mount a losing streak, ensuring that you will both head into and out of the All-Star break with no momentum.

Five straight losses after being .500 and four games back in the division race – still in the hunt! – as recently as July 7th (That’s longform for ‘check’)

Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Jason Grilli (center) is attended to by Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez (left) and team trainer Jeff Porter   (right), and teammates after being injured during the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. The Rockies won 3-2. (Chris   Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports)

Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Jason Grilli (center) is attended to by Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez (left) and team trainer Jeff Porter (right), and teammates after being injured during the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. The Rockies won 3-2. (Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports)

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APSU Governors in the Pros: Major League Baseball All-Star break update

 

Austin Peay Sports Information

Austin Peay State University Governors - APSUClarksville, TN – As baseball fans shift their attention to Cincinnati for the 2015 All-Star Game, it’s an appropriate time to look across the country at former Austin Peay State University players competing in the pros.

Currently, there are two Govs playing in the big leagues, seven in minor league systems, and one signed to the Frontier League.

Los Angeles Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis (17) hits a solo home run in the fifth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Dodger Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)

Los Angeles Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis (17) hits a solo home run in the fifth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Dodger Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)

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