Thursday, September 29, 2011

Colossal Collapse!

Going into the month of September, the Atlanta Braves had an 8 ½ game lead for the NL Wild Card. A lead that seemed insurmountable due to the way the team was playing in August and the start of September. Only the bats fell asleep and the pitching dropped off considerably due to injuries and fatigue. What seemed to be a lock to make the playoffs going into the last month of the season slowly started to become a slow burning fire that eventually overtook the team and their fans hopes of making the playoffs! This one really hurts!

It all came down to the last day of the regular season and the Braves needed a win to force a one game playoff against St. Louis for the NL Wild Card spot. Even though the Cardinals game started an hour later than the Braves on Wednesday, it was over way earlier. The Cards took care of business in Houston and put the game away early. They won 8-0 against the Astros and game them their 106th loss of the season. Meanwhile the Braves were playing the Philadelphia Phillies who have the most wins in baseball. The game ended up going 13 innings with the Phillies winning 4-3. Then the heartbreak set in!

I don’t even know how to explain it. Things were going so nicely for the whole summer. I realized around the end of July or the start of August that the Braves were not going to win the Division, but would still make the playoffs via the Wild Card. The offense was clicking, the defense was solid and the pitching staff was on cruise control. Then the wheels started to get wobbly and eventually fell off the last week of the season. The Braves lost the last 5 games of the season and went 9-18 in the last month. That is a complete choke!

I know it is no consolation to Braves fans, but we weren’t the biggest collapse in MLB history. That happened to the Boston Red Socks. They were in the same type of situation yesterday and had to win to either make the playoffs or force a one game playoff depending on what the Tampa Bay Rays did. The Socks lost and the Rays won to clinch the AL Wild Card. The only thing that makes the Red Socks collapse worse than the Braves was at the start of September, the Red Socks were in first place in their division and their payroll is more that double what the Braves is. So as bad as a failure the Braves season turned out to be, at least we weren’t expected to win the division and the cost wasn’t nearly as much as the Red Socks. Even knowing this, it doesn’t stop the hurt that Braves fans are feeling.

Well, at least we have the Thrashers! Oh wait, they were sold and moved to Canada.

Well, at least we have the Hawks! Oh wait, they are being locked out and the season might not happen.

So now I guess I focus all of my attention on Georgia football and the Atlanta Falcons!

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