It will be Atlanta versus Houston

“In the home half of the fourth, though, the scorching Eddie Rosario hit a two-out, three-run homer off Los Angeles starter Walker Buehler to give Atlanta a 4-1 lead and change the tenor of Game 6. The home run was Rosario’s 14th hit of the 2021 NLCS, which ties the all-time record for most hits in a postseason series.”

My addition:

Each of those other guys did it in a seven-game series. Rosario is the only one to do it in six. The others had at least 28 at bats and as many as 34, while Rosario needed only 25.

The Braves seem overmatched, but then again they have seemed overmatched in every series. Hell, they seemed overmatched in their own division when they started the season 37-41 and were in fourth place out of five teams in baseball’s weakest division. It really looked bleak when they lost their best hitter four games later. Acuna had been the cornerstone of their offense in that first half, and appeared on his way to a 50-homer season. But they actually did better without him, and here they are, so you may not want to bet against them.

Credit their pitching staff with that amazing second half. The Braves allowed 4.5 runs per game before the break, 3.5 after. In theory, that’s the difference between a .500 team and a .620 team – therefore worth about .120 in the ol’ W-L pct, and that theory held up well. They were .494 before the break, .611 after (.117 difference). The biggest improvement came from Max Fried, who had a 4.71 ERA in the first half, 1.74 in the second.

7 thoughts on “It will be Atlanta versus Houston

  1. LOL. I’m still pissed off at them for picking 95 to be the one series where they didn’t choke.

      1. The dynasty that never was, The John Hart plan was to first assemble a great hitting team while filling in the pitching with free agents like Hershiser and Dennis Martinez. Then “waves of arms’ (his words) would be the emphasis in the second phase.
        Part one was a total success. But other than Bartolo Colon and Jaret Wright the young arms never showed up. And the first time I watched Wright’s odd-looking cross-body delivery I was afraid that the DL was not far off (and it wasn’t). The Indians were also starting their bad drafting streak which lasted until about 10 years ago. By 1999 their pitching was so crappy that a 1000-run scoring team had its playoff hopes ruined when the immortal Dave Burba came up with a bad forearm.
        And some other things. Their two best players, “Joey” and Manny Being Manny were total jerks. And the revival of that East Coast team.

        1. Manny was a jerk, but that man could rake. His 165 RBI that year were the highest total of the integration era, which is now 3/4 of a century old.

          And poor Kenny Lofton should get a free pass to the HoF just for having to play the entire outfield by himself, between Albert Belle and Manny.

          Now that I think about it, Visquel and Lofton were like those two guys in fast pitch softball that were the only fielders behind Eddie Feigner. It was basically those two guys and seven DHs.

          1. With the exception of the catcher, Einar Diaz, everyone on that team could rake. The opening five were: Lofton having his typical great year, Omar hitting .333, Alomar having an MVP-level year, Manny, and Thome having one of his good years. And then you had Justice, Sexson (116 ribbies), and Travis Fryman.
            And even Diaz, through the magic of Shapiro/Antonetti trading, eventually morphed into Travis Hafner, the heart of the glorious one-shot ’07 team with the sinkerballer who wasn’t quite himself.

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