I feel bad about the lack of content about the Braves over the past several weeks. I know that the title of this blog makes reference to the local baseball collective and does not refer to the Clockwork Oranje or La Furia. It's not that I haven't been keeping tabs on the Braves. I just find it painful to discuss them. They're a perfectly good team that have been paralyzed by fear at the end of close games. When the Braves were 0-8 in one-run games, I thought that their bad luck would even out and they'd be in first place within a matter of weeks. Instead, they are 3-9 in one-run games since that time, a total exception to the rule that performance in one-run games is a matter of fortune. If you'll forgive me a lame turn of phrase, fortune most definitely does not favor the Brave(s) in 2008.
The games this weekend were incredibly frustrating. Going into the three-game set against the Phillies, I figured that the Braves would take two of three and head out onto the road 2.5 games out. That certainly wasn't an unreasonable expectation, given the Braves' home form. (The footie expressions are creeping in more and more.) Instead, the Braves got swept after playing the same game three times in a row: three games that were very tight going into the late innings and ended with the Phillies getting the big hits and outs. It really hurts watching the Braves play close games. The bullpen, which is otherwise perfectly fine, can't get a key out. The lineup, which is otherwise excellent, can't get a key hit. And when everything goes alright, my favorite Brave (post-Smoltz) Kelly Johnson drops a pop-up.
So, I understand if you may be frustrated by the soccer-heavy content, but can you really blame me?