My Top Ten Braves Games of 2019

With the start of the regular baseball season postponed due to COVID-19 and there are currently no games being played, I thought that I would share my top ten games of 2019.

10. July 27th- Braves vs Phillies

Let’s face it, this games was fun to watch! Not only was it was a wild offensive win for the Braves, it was also a special return to the big leagues for Adam Duvall. With a final score of 15-7, the Braves bats were not shy of anything. They hit a total of four home runs by Ronald Acuña Jr., Ender Inciarte, Adam Duvall, and Ozzie Albies who hit a gran slam in the third. Max Fried was pitching for the Braves, and he went a total of 5.1 innings, giving up 5 runs and three walks.

9. June 14th- Braves vs Phillies

This game was suspenseful. With the Phillies taking advantage of Max Fried, they jumped out on the Braves with a 5-1 lead in five innings, hitting two home runs (by Bryce Harper and Scott Kingery). It didn’t look good for the Braves, but the players never gave up. With their late inning magic, the Braves managed to score two runs in both the seventh and eighth innings. Then in the bottom of the ninth inning, with the Braves still down 8-6, Dansby Swanson leads off with a single, followed by a walk to Markakis, then a RBI double out of Riley. It was the up to Brian McCann. After two quick swinging strikes from McCann, he got one in the bottom-of-the-zone and didn’t miss it. Gapping the ball between the Phillies outfielders, McCann led the Braves to a 9-8 victory with a two run single. This game just shows how much perseverance the Braves have — no matter the situation, they never give up!

8. August 7-Braves vs Twins

With the Braves coming off of a big offensive win the night before against the Twins, they carried their momentum to this game. Winning 12-7, the Braves showed major offensive talent hitting a total of four home runs, two of which were hit by Ozzie Albies (my favorite player)! Max Fried once again showed dominance on the mound, striking out ten Twins hitters — seven of which came against the first nine batters he faced keeping the Twins hitless through five innings. The Braves bats really came alive in this game! Ozzie Albies and Charlie Culberson had four hits in five tries, and Freddie Freeman had three hits in five tries. This game shows how much power the Braves have.

7. April 7th -Braves vs Marlins

Wrapping us the Braves opening home stand of 2019, to me, this was the perfect game. Sean Newcomb was the staring pitcher for the Braves and pitched well through seven innings surrendering two runs and four hits to the Marlin batters. The Braves hit two home runs, one from Freddie Freeman (his first home run of 2019) and the other from Dansby Swanson. In the ninth inning the Braves were up 3-2 but, our closer Ardoys Vizcaíno gave up a home run to Marlins left-fielder Curtis Granderson, and we were tied. Then in the bottom of the ninth with bases loaded nobody out, it was up to Dansby Swanson. Dansby getting ahead in the count, 2-0 got a pitch to hit and didn’t miss it. Hitting the ball into left field, Dansby walked the Braves off 4-3 with a RBI double.

6. August 18th- Braves vs Dodgers

After the Braves came off of a big win against the Dodgers’ pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu the night before, the Braves didn’t disappoint in this game. Falling behind 3-0 on a home run by Cody Bellinger in the first inning, things did not look good for the Braves. But being the relentless team that they are, the Braves scored one in the fourth thanks to Adeiny Hechavarria’s booming double off the right field wall to score Matt Joyce. Then, in the bottom of the sixth, bases lodaded, Rafael Ortega did something magical! In a 1-2 count he got all over a pitch right down the middle. This led to a grand slam off of Dustin May giving the Braves a 5-3 lead to help them win the game and the series against the Dodgers.

5. June 12th- Braves vs Pirates

This game was a long one. With Mike Soroka on the mound for the Braves, we saw something that rarely happens to him, he gave up five runs and ten hits. After a long rain delay, the Pirates got the lead in the ninth on a solo home run by Josh Bell. That left the game in the hands of Austin Riley who smashed a solo home run to center to tie the game. Going into extra innings, in the eleventh, after Ausitn Riley was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning for the Braves, Ozzie Albies hit a walk-off triple to center to give the Braves the win and sole possession of first place in the National League East! But, what might have been the very best part of that game (besides the win) was Ronald Acuña Jr. dousing Ozzie Albies twice in his interview!

4. August 2nd- Braves vs Reds

If you keep track of scores, you might be wondering why this is one of my to ten games given the fact that we lost 5-2. It was a special game for me, it was the first Atlanta Braves game that I went to. Although the Braves did loose, I got to witness two Atlanta Braves home runs. One by Austin Riley and the other by Ronald Acuña Jr. Acuña, whose homer went 463 ft! This game will forever have a special place in my love of baseball, not because of the home runs, but because it was the first game I ever got to experiece.

3. August 30th- Braves vs White Sox

This game is also a very special one for me, it was the second Atlanta Braves game that I got to go to! Max Fried was the pitcher for that game, and he performed fantastically. He struck out a season high eleven White Sox hitters, surrendering only four hits and a walk. While the Braves did have the lead the White Sox made a game of it. In the top of the seventh inning, Welington Castillo hit a three-run homer off of Luke Jackson making the game 6-5. But the Braves, with their late inning magic got a bigger lead and won 10-7. Ozzie Albies did fantastic in this game. He went 4-5 with two singles, two doubles, an RBI, and he scored twice.

2. September 20th- Braves vs Giants

Obviously this game is in my top ten… it’s the clinch! Not only was it the clinch, but it was a very well played game on the Braves part. Winning 6-0, the Braves hit two, two-run homers, one by Acuña and the other by Brian McCann. Not to mention Mike Foltynewicz pitched very well. This game is big for every Braves fan, because, if you remember, we were picked (despite how well we did in 2018) to finish fourth in the National Lueage East. We proved them wrong!

1. October 6th- Braves vs Cardinals

This game was epic. This game perfectly describes the Braves motto, “We are Relentless.” Not only was it a postseason game, it was an amazing come-from-behind win for the Braves. With Mike Soroka and Adam Wainwright on the mound for both teams, this game was a pitching duel. The Cardinals did take advantage of Soroka in the second, scoring one run, but that wasn’t enough to pull a win. In the top of the ninth inning the Braves had to face Cardinal closer, Carlos Martínez who barely escaped a blown save in game one. Josh Donaldson started the top of the ninth inning with a double, (he was replaced by Billy Hamilton), then after two strikeouts, the Cardinals intentionally walked Brian McCann. It was up to Dansby Swanson. And boy did he did come through! The first pitch Dansby Saw, a high heater, he slashed it into left field to score Hamilton. We were tied! But we weren’t done! It was Adam Duvall’s turn. He hit a two run double to score Ortega and Swanson. We won 3-1. This game is number one for me because it shows how relentless we are in any situation, and that we are better than everyone thinks.

I hope you enjoyed my top ten and are as excited as I am waiting for the return of baseball in 2020.

The Fight For Third Base Continues

With less than three weeks until the season starts, the decision for who will be playing third base will need to be reached soon.

Will it be Camargo or Riley?

Obviously it is a tough decision for the Braves manager Brian Snitker to make with Josh Donaldson gone. Both Camargo and Riley are worthy of the everyday roll at third base, but relistically they both can’t play third base everyday unless one of them is doing so in Triple-A (Gwinnett).

The case for Camargo:

During the Spring Training games Camargo has played in, he has gone 7-for-23 with a home run, a double, and five strikeouts in nine Grapefruit games pruducing a .304 average. These numbers include his plate appearances as the designated hitter. Camargo is much leaner than he was in 2019, and after returning from Triple-A late in the season last year he had noticably improved his swing and had strengthened his patience. But, if he’s not chosen to become the Braves everyday third basemen, Johan Camargo could be put on the bench to add depth.

The case for Riley:

Like Camargo, Austin has gone 7-for-23 in nine games with two home runs, a walk, and as also produced a .304 average. Considering that Ausitn Riley struckout in 50 of his last 109 at-bats during the regular sesaon in 2019, you can tell that Riley has more patience and is laying off the slider. With just five strikouts so far this Spring Training, his patience is paying off.

Who will it be?

Both Austin and Johan are very capable and willing to play third base. But, in the end only one will get the roll. I think that it will all start to play itself out soon. As the 2020 season starts we, as fans, will better understand why Brian Snitker will choose who our 3rd baseman will be.

As for me, I think it will be Johan Camargo. I have nothing against Austin Riley, I just think that Joahn is the better choice given that he has has more experience with the Atlanta Braves as a third basemen.

But I could be wrong. The Braves could go with Austin Riley and he could do wonderful things, produce good numbers both offensively and defensively. The season will tell!