On Saturday the Braves did a throwback night to 1914. As part of it they nixed all of the loud music from over the P.A. including walkup music for the hitters and run-in music for closer Craig Kimbrel, relying on organ music instead. Kimbrel’s usual jam is “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns N’ Roses.
Not hearing that when Kimbrel came in to protect a one-run lead in the ninth really bothered Braves’ first baseman Freddie Freeman. From the AJC:
“My issue is when, I don’t mind using the uniform, I love the throw-back uniform, but when the atmosphere is taken out of the game,” Freeman said. “Fans are coming here to have an experience and there is nothing on the Jumbotron, no music is playing. I’m looking in the stands and people’s heads are down. It kind of takes the energy out of the stadium, especially when the best closer in the game comes in and there are not flames (on the scoreboard), nothing like that.”
I’m with you, Freddie. I mean, without flames on the Jumbotron and some GN’R blaring, it’s really not even baseball. And really, doesn’t anyone remember 1914 Braves hitter Possum Whitted coming up to this jock jam of the day?
Dudes: between the Braves announcers complaining about Bryce Harper all the time and Freeman finding reason to whine about this sort of thing on a night they beat the best team in baseball, it’s a real drag to root for the Braves these days.
Starter Jeremy Hellickson has become the Phillies’ most enticing trade chip as he’s put together a solid month of July. After shutting out the Marlins on one hit and one walk over six innings on Monday, the right-hander lowered his July ERA to 1.97 and his overall ERA to 3.65. As a result, the Phillies are telling teams they want a top-five prospect to part with Hellickson, per ESPN’s Jayson Stark.
Obviously, a top-five prospect means something different if you’re the Marlins as opposed to the Rangers. And the Phillies’ price point for Hellickson isn’t likely to stay that high, but GM Matt Klentak is setting a lofty starting point so that the return might end up being higher than market value.
ESPN’s Buster Olney speculates that the Phillies could end up holding onto Hellickson and giving him a qualifying offer after the season. He notes that the Phillies have only $25 million tied up for the 2017 season, so they could afford to pay Hellickson in excess of $16 million if he were to accept.
Madison Bumgarner isn’t the only Giants pitcher who can rake. Matt Cain crushed a three-run home run during Tuesday’s game against the Giants.
Cain stepped to the plate with runners on the corner and one out against Reds starter Cody Reed in the bottom of the second inning. Reed threw a 1-1 fastball down the middle and Cain hit it about 20 rows back in the left field seats.
It’s Cain’s first homer of the season, his first since 2012, and the seventh of his 12-year career. He still has some work to catch up to Bumgarner, who has two homers this year and 13 in his career.
On the pitching side of things, Cain got the win against the Reds on Tuesday night, giving up four runs on six hits and a walk with four strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. He currently holds an ugly 5.95 ERA.