The 2015 Braves have “gravitas” and “veteran leadership” and will have dirty uniforms. Just kill me now.


This tweet came out from the Braves last night:

Then David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was talking last night about why the Braves got Jonny Gomes and Nick Markakis. And he offered some buzzwords that should make the fans of any team to which they apply shudder:

Just kill me now.

We’ve gone on about the “dirt” and “grit” and “gamer” stuff at length around these parts. It’s empty and horrible and is designed to distract fans from the fact that your team is not particularly good at baseball but, hey, they’ll look intense while losing.

Meanwhile, talking your team up for its “gravitas” and “veteran leadership” is like talking your friend’s blind date up for having “a great personality.” Sure, those things are nice, but for the purposes at hand, they are only mentioned because it cannot be truthfully said that the baseball team is good or that the blind date is physically attractive. It’s a dodge.

Personally, I like baseball teams that have good players. The 2013 Braves won 96 games without much “gravitas” and “leadership.” The 1988 Braves had “gravitas” out the wazoo in the form of Ken Griffey Sr. They had veteran leadership in the form of Dale Murphy. They also lost 106 games.

My guess is that, unlike in 1988, the 2015 Braves at least have a chance to avoid the cellar. It’ll be a pitched battle with Philly for that “title” all year, but at least it’ll be worth watching for all the veteran leadership on display.

Oh well:

Braves ace Mike Soroka out for year with torn Achilles

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Atlanta Braves ace Mike Soroka is out for the season after tearing his right Achilles tendon Monday night against the New York Mets.

Soroka was hurt in the third inning after delivering a pitch to J.D. Davis, who grounded the ball toward first baseman Freddie Freeman.

Soroka broke toward first to cover the bag, only to go down on his first step off the mound. The right-hander knew right away it was a devastating injury, one that ensures he won’t be back on the mound until 2021.

“It’s a freak thing that happened,” manager Brian Snitker said, delivering the grim news after the Braves lost 7-2 to the Mets. “I’m sorry it did.”

Soroka yelled in obvious pain and tried to walk gingerly for a couple of steps before dropping to his knees. He couldn’t put any weight on the leg as he was helped toward the clubhouse with the assistance of Snitker and a trainer.

It was a major blow to the two-time defending NL East champion Braves, who had won five straight despite struggling to put together an effective rotation.

“Somebody else is going to get an opportunity,” Snitker said. “Things like that happen. These guys will regroup. Somebody is going to get an opportunity to do something really good. Our young guys are going to continue to get better. We’re going to be fine.”

Soroka, who turns 23 on Tuesday, made his first opening day start last month after going 13-4 with a dazzling 2.68 ERA in 2019 to finish second in NL Rookie of the Year balloting and sixth for the Cy Young Award.

Soroka was making his third start of the season. He came in having allowed just two earned runs over 11 1/3 innings but struggled against the Mets, giving up three hits and four walks. He was charged with four earned runs in 2 1/3 innings, the second-shortest outing of his career.

Unfortunately for Soroka, he won’t get a chance to make up for it this season.