Tagged in: Atlanta Braves

Atlanta Braves’ Brian McCann to retire after 15-year career

After a decade and a half in the major leagues, Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann is calling it quits.

The former All-Star told reporters after the Braves’ NLDS loss to the St. Louis Cardinals that he is retiring. Thanks to a one-year contract signed last offseason, McCann’s career will end with the same team with which he spent his first nine seasons in MLB.

“This is it for me,” McCann said. “I’m going to go home and be a dad, and play with my kids … It’s time to go. Fifteen years. It’s done.”

In 15 years as a major leaguer, McCann racked up a .262/.337/.452 career line with 1,590 hits and 282 home runs, all while directing pitching game plans behind the plate. McCann was a perennial All-Star during his first tenure with the Braves, delivering one of the most dangerous bats from the catching position in the league and accruing seven All-Star nods.

From 2008 to 2016, McCann posted at least 20 homers in every season

A nine-year streak bested only by Mike Piazza and Yogi Berra at the catching position.

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After hitting free agency following the 2014 season, McCann signed a five-year deal with the New York Yankees, where he saw less accomplishment until he was traded to the Houston Astros. There, he won his first career World Series ring in 2017.

McCann later returned to the Braves for one last ride, the perfect setting for a man who was born in Atlanta, grew up in Georgia and was drafted by the Braves back in 2002.

“I went to high school here. I grew up here. I got to play nine years to start my career here,” McCann said. “I grew up with some of my heroes growing up, and got to come back and play with the new generation. I’d say that’s a success.” Of course, McCann’s legacy is also described by who he was as a teammate, and the reviews there are quite positive.

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Boston Red Sox at Atlanta Braves

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Boston Red Sox (9-9) at Atlanta Braves (4-14)
MLB Baseball: Monday, April 25, 2016 at 7:10 pm (Turner Field)
R Porcello (3-0) (4.66) vs. J Teheran (0-2) (5.64)
The Line: Atlanta Braves +126 / Boston Red Sox -136

The Boston Red Sox look for a solid road victory to get a game above a .500 record. The Red Sox seem to have found their offense as of late with 16 runs scored against the Astros and six or more runs scored in four of their last five games. The Boston Red Sox are 9-4 this season when scoring more than three runs. Dustin Pedroia leads Boston with 25 hits, Mookie Betts has 14 RBI and David Ortiz has three home runs. Rick Porcello gets the nod, and he’s 3-0 with a 4.66 ERA and 24 strikeouts this season. Porcello is 1-1 with a 4.97 ERA and 10 strikeouts in his career against the Braves.

No matter the situation, the Boston Red Sox fought back time and time again Sunday to pull out a 12-inning victory.

Despite a short outing by their starter, leaning on the bullpen for more than eight innings and a blown save in the ninth, the Red Sox never caved en route to a 7-5 victory against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park.

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The Atlanta Braves are desperate for a victory after losing their last five games. The Braves simply can’t put runs on the board, as they’ve produced three or less in five straight games and 11 of their 18 games overall this season. The Atlanta Braves four victories this season have come when they’ve scored six or more runs. Nick Markakis leads Atlanta with 20 hits, Adonis Garcia has six RBI and Freddie Freeman has one home run. Julio Teheran takes the hill, and he’s 0-2 with a 5.64 ERA and 17 strikeouts this season. This will be Teheran’s second career game against the Red Sox.

Pitching matchups for the Red Sox-Braves series in Atlanta:

Monday: RHP Rick Porcello (3-0, 4.66) vs. RHP Julio Teheran (0-2, 5.64), 7:10 p.m., NESN.

Tuesday: RHP David Price (2-0, 7.06) vs. RHP Matt Wisler (0-1, 3.10), 7:10 p.m., NESN.

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Atlanta Braves at New York Mets

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Monday: LHP Jonathon Niese (8-10, 4.31) vs. RHP Shelby Miller (5-15, 3.00), 7:10 p.m. ET

Tuesday: RHP Logan Verrett* (1-0, 1.91) vs. RHP Matt Wisler (5-8, 5.63), 7:10 p.m. ET

Wednesday: RHP Bartolo Colon* (14-12, 4.15) vs. RHP Williams Perez (6-6, 5.16), 7:10 p.m. ET

The Atlanta Braves travel to New York to face the New York Mets in a 3-game series with the NL East division leaders. The Mets lost 2 games in a row this weekend to their cross-town rivals, the New York Yankees. The Mets had a 9.5 game lead in the NL East a week ago, but the Washington Nationals have slimmed their deficit in the division to 6 games with less than two weeks left, coming off a sweep of the Miami Marlins.

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New York (84-65) holds a six-game lead over Washington atop the NL East despite having dropped four of five after Sunday’s 11-2 loss to the Yankees. Barring a collapse, the Mets will make their first postseason appearance since 2006

The Braves (60-90), though, are coming off a weekend sweep of Philadelphia after three consecutive 2-1 wins. A.J. Pierzynski singled home the winning run in the bottom of the ninth Sunday after Julio Teheran was solid for 8 1-3.

Atlanta hasn’t won four straight since July 1-4.

Atlanta may be out of playoff contention, but can play the role of spoiler against their perennial divisional rivals during this series. It would serve the Braves well to end the season on a good note after all of their struggles in the second half of 2015. With the Mets having cooled off a bit since they swept the Atlanta Braves in a four-game series at Turner Field last weekend, a little revenge may be in order.

New York swept a four-game series in Atlanta when the clubs last faced each other Sept. 10-13. The Mets have won five of the six matchups at Citi Field.

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Toronto Blue Jays at Atlanta Braves

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The Atlanta Braves snapped a 12-game home losing streak Tuesday, and now will try to give Shelby Miller his first victory in nearly four months when they host the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday

Miller’s winless streak sits at 21 and in 13 of those outings the Braves have not scored a run while he has been in the game, but Atlanta found a way in the series opener to keep the American League East-leading Blue Jays from extending their division lead. Miller faces David Price in a matchup of two of the better pitchers in baseball this season.

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Much like the last series, this three-game set between the Atlanta Bravesand Toronto Blue Jays features two teams trending in opposite directions. Toronto took three out of four from the New York Yankees over the weekend to open up a three-game lead in the American League East. Atlanta found a way to lose Sunday to cap off a four-game sweep at the hands of the New York Mets.

Before being shutout Sunday, the Blue Jays scored 11, 9, and 10 runs against the Yankees. Against a Braves pitching staff that has struggled mightily in recent months, this does not bode well. Toronto boasts three of the top nine home run hitters in the American League in Josh Donaldson (38), Jose Bautista (35), and Edwin Encarnacion (32). Encarnacion has been especially hot as of late, hitting .341 with 11 homers and 34 RBIs in the last month. Speedy outfielder Ben Revere has been going well in recent days too, hitting .435 (10-for-23) during the past week.

The Braves, on the other hand, are in the midst of a miserable stretch. They lead theMets 7-4 with two outs in the ninth inning and the bases empty on Sunday. Three batters, later, Daniel Murphy tied the game with a three-run homer. New York scored three more runs with two outs in the tenth inning, to win 10-7. Atlanta has lost what is believed to be a franchise record 12 straight games at Turner Field. On a brighter note, Andrelton Simmons is hitting .375 (9-for-24) over the last week, and Michael Bourn has reversed some of his bad luck, batting .333 (7-for-21) over that same time.

The Blue Jays lead the Yankees by three games in the AL East and are 37-16 since the All-Star break, fueled by a high-powered offense. Toronto’s top three home-run hitters (Josh Donaldson, 38; Jose Bautista, 35; Edwin Encarnacion, 32) have combined for 105 homers, while the Braves as a team have belted just 89. Encarnacion missed his second consecutive game Tuesday with an injured middle finger on his left hand, and the Blue Jays hope he will be available at some point in the three-game series.

PITCHING MATCHUP:

Blue Jays LH David Price (6-1, 2.28 ERA) vs. Braves RH Shelby Miller (5-14, 2.86)

Price has been outstanding in eight starts since being dealt from Detroit to Toronto at the trade deadline, winning four of his last five outings. He beat the Yankees on Friday, striking out seven with two runs allowed on six hits in five innings, and has not allowed more than three earned runs in any start with the Blue Jays. Price has averaged 8.1 strikeouts in his Toronto starts, allowing only three homers in 55 1/3 innings. Miller has taken the loss in his past five outings, even though he has allowed more than four earned runs just once in that stretch. He held the Mets to three runs on seven hits in six innings last time out, but again got no support in a 7-2 defeat. The Braves have averaged 2.37 runs in Miller’s starts this season, the lowest total for any qualifying starter in the majors.

WALK-OFFS

  1. Atlanta has won just four times in its past 28 games but held the top five hitters in Toronto’s lineup to one hit in 19 at-bats with eight strikeouts in the series opener.
  2. Toronto 1B Justin Smoak started for Encarnacion and homered Tuesday, the 95th homer the Blue Jays have slugged on the road this season – second in the majors to Seattle’s 96.
  3. Blue Jays CF Ben Revere is hitless in his past eight at-bats after going 10-for-19 in his previous four games; Revere is hitting .325 in 40 games since being traded from Philadelphia to Toronto.

 

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Colorado Rockies at Atlanta Braves

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Where: Turner Field

When: 7:10 p.m.

Probable starting pitchers:

 Monday, August 24, 5:10 pm
Jorge De La Rosa (7-5, 4.50) vs.  Julio Teheran (8-6, 4.32)

Tuesday, August 25, 5:10 pm
Yohan Flande (3-1, 3.94) vs.  Mike Foltynewicz (4-5, 6.06)

Wednesday, August 26, 5:10 pm
Jon Gray (0-0, 5.94) vs. Shelby Miller (5-10, 2.50)

The Braves slump home after an 0-7 trip to San Diego and Chicago, having lost 22 of their past 24 road games.

They begin a nine-game homestand Monday night with a manageable opponent in the Colorado Rockies, but even those meetings have gone poorly for the free-falling Braves this summer.

The Colorado Rockies are now done with a long home stand — one where they didn’t find a ton of success while facing three good-to-decent teams in the Padres, Nationals, and Mets.

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Now, they’ll get the opportunity to go back on the road, facing an ice-cold Atlanta Braves team this week before heading to Pittsburgh this weekend to face a very good ball club that’ll almost surely be in the playoffs come October.

Atlanta (53-71) completed a 0-7 trip with Sunday’s 9-3 loss to the Chicago Cubs, recording its longest overall slide of the season while falling to an MLB-worst 11-29 dating to July 8. The rotation has posted a 7.57 ERA on the skid and the staff as a whole has allowed 18 home runs – nine coming in the last two games at Wrigley Field.

The Rockies (49-73), who swept the Braves in four games July 9-12 in Colorado, are coming off being swept in three games at home by the New York Mets. Sunday’s 5-1 loss was their 11th in 13 games, and another would put them 25 games under .500 for the sixth season in franchise history and third time in the last four years.

The road, however, hasn’t provided a refuge. The Rockies have dropped four straight away games, and their 16-37 record since opening the season with six straight road wins is second-worst in baseball to the Braves (18-47).

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