Diaz's mistake was good for the 27th out in the 158th game, but the Braves aren't falling short of the postseason just because he was indecisive in a key spot. As they did Tuesday, the Braves were put behind by their rotation, and when that happens, they have very little chance to win. A team that lived and died by its starting pitching got back-to-back poor starts from Tim Hudson and Javier Vazquez at the wrong time, and couldn't overcome them. That's been a theme all year long. When they allow four or five runs, a level at which a team should be competitive, the Braves are a brutal 12-28, a .300 winning percentage. The rest of MLB is 495-638, a .437 mark. That .300 percentage is the lowest in the game, and by far the lowest of any contending team. It is the final indictment of the offense, and the reason the Braves' season will end on Sunday.
The rally at the end of the season was fantastic, but we shouldn't let it obscure the fact that the offense needs to get a little better for this team to reach its goals in Bobby's swan song. Some of that offensive output will come from Jason Heyward, some will come from a full season without the Out-o-matic 9000, some will come from Greg Norton not being thrown into key at-bats, and some will hopefully come from a top-shelf first baseman.