Going into this series at Seattle, my hope was that the Braves could at least salvage a split. The likes of a win happening against Felix Hernandez were pretty low, but surely the Braves could possibly cobble together enough runs to beat Chris Young while Julio Teheran managed to keep the Mariners offense at bay, right? Turns out that I had a bit too much faith in the Tomahawk-clad men for this series, as they failed to get the split and ended their worst road trip since the franchise was in Boston, shortly after World War II ended.
The first game was disappointing not because the Braves lost, but because of how they lost. The Braves miraculously got one run off of King Felix and had a slim lead going into the 4th inning. Unfortunately, that lead slipped thanks to a defensive lapse from Tommy La Stella (and to an extent, Jason Heyward). What should have been a catch on a somewhat tricky-yet-definitely possible play ended up being an extremely costly error, as what was then a 1-1 game became a 3-1 game in favor of the Mariners. Then Seattle knocked in another run, and that was more than enough as King Felix continued to do what King Felix does. That summed up loss #7 in a row.
Loss #8 in a row was equally as painful because, for a second there, the Braves really got you going and had you thinking that a corner had finally been turned. In the top of the 3rd, Atlanta had a situation that us fans have come to dread in recent times: Bases loaded with one (or nobody) out. Everyone was expecting a double play or two awful at-bats to occur. Instead, Tommy La Stella coerced a walk out of Chris Young, and Freddie Freeman hit a double that brought in two runs, giving the Braves a big 3-run inning to take the lead after a successful attempt with runners in scoring position.
Then the bottom fell out for Julio Teheran. Teheran gave up a leadoff homer to Dustin Ackley, and then later in the inning, with 2 runners on and 2 out, Logan Morrison hit a homer to put the Mariners out of reach. Those two players have a combined 13 home runs between them, and yet they were the ones who smacked Teheran around in the same inning. Extremely frustrating.
In addition to the copious amounts of losing going on, the Braves also lost Andrelton Simmons for an unspecified amount of time due to a sprained ankle that he received during the first game. When it rains, it pours.
The good news is that there's absolutely no way that the Braves are going to go the rest of the season without a win. It's statistically impossible. Eventually, they'll get a win. The bad news is that, with series against the Nationals, Dodgers, and Athletics looming, the problem is that those wins could be few and far in between with the way that the team is playing right now. Make no bones about it, this was a complete horror show of a road trip, and the Braves will have to pick things up pretty soon if they want to make up for it.
Simply put, it's time for the Braves to get off the mat, take their 8-count, and come back swinging for the rest of the metaphorical boxing match that is the tail end of the season. They may have taken a few dizzying haymakers, but somehow, they're still in this a with a puncher's chance. A punch-drunk puncher's chance, but it's still a possibility.