#108: A Handful Of Questions About The Future

By VOR aka Voice of Raisins/Reason/Reality/Ridiculous/Rose-colored glasses

JEFFERSON, GA (God’s country) – There was a good bit of chatter a few days ago on MLBTR’s chat regarding the Braves, their pitchers and Michael Bourn. All very good questions, and questions we all pretty much ask regularly. So here are a handful of questions for 2012 and beyond:

1. Thumb: Will the Braves trade DLowe in the off season?
2. Index Finger: Will the Braves trade JJ in the off season?
3. Bird Finger: What pitcher goes to make room for Julio Teheran next year?
4. Ring Finger: What will Bourn make in arb?
5. Pinky: Will the Braves try to extend Bourn?

The first three fingers are about pitching. Literally. Those are the fingers used to grip the baseball… but I digress. Those first 3 questions can really be combined, and expanded to include Mike Minor, who must be included in the rotation candidates. No one seems to remember that Minor, like Teheran, has very little left to learn at AAA. He’d already be in the rotation of almost every other major league team. So, what to do? You already have 3 young stud pitchers in Hanson, Jurjjens & Beachy. Huddy is likely a Brave until he retires. He’s the veteran rock that all the youngsters lean on. He’s so entrenched in the community that I can’t see the Braves even entertaining any thoughts of parting with him. Huddy is a lock for next season. So is Beachy. He’s got every quality you want in a pitcher. He’s gritty, smart and cool under pressure. And he can pitch… not throw, pitch. He’s Greg Maddux lite. Following that, you have the 2 star youngsters, Jurjjens and Hanson, and you have the overpaid grizzled veteran DLowe. Obviously, one of those 3 pitchers will not be here next season.

First, let’s address JJ and Tommy. Both are under team control for the near future, and both are represented by Ber’s favorite, Scott Boras. Big Red, though, is under team control for a couple of years more than JJ, who is a FA in 2014. Red doesn’t hit the market until 2016. Plus, he’s the big righty power pitcher that every rotation must have. Tommy’s not going anywhere for a while.

So… for those keeping score, in no particular order, Huddy, Beachy and Hanson are locks for next year’s rotation. And I don’t think I’m going out on too flimsy a limb to say that Teheran/Minor will be the #5 next season. That battle will be fierce, with the loser going back to Gwinnett to be the first guy on Frank’s Rolodex.

So that really leaves one spot for DLowe and JJ in 2012. I know… no real earth shattering revelation here. We can all see that handwriting on the clubhouse wall. The conventional wisdom says that DLowe will finally be tradable with just 1 year left on his onerous contract and that he is the obvious one to go. I say, “Hold on there, Baba-louie! I’ll do the thinnin’ around here!” (Vague reference to Quickdraw McGraw…) The decision between the two is not as cut and dried as some would suggest. Yeah, I know that JJ is an All-Star and was clearly the Braves best starter for the first half of 2011. He was pretty much their best starter the first half of 2010. Problem is, they make us play the second half, too. JJ is a very talented pitcher, no doubt. He’d be the #1 on many teams in both leagues. His value is pretty high. That, to me, makes him the clear choice. His value will never be higher, and he’s gonna have to go after 2012 anyway. Too many studs in the pipeline.

And I’ll even offer one other scenario. I can see the Braves trading JJ during the off season, gaining a nice return while opening a spot for Teheran/Minor, and then dangling DLowe at the 2012 deadline. At that point, he’ll be the veteran rental pitcher that a lot of contending teams will covet going toward the playoff push. That’s likely where they’ll get their best return for him.

You say, “VOR! No way the Braves would have two rookies in next year’s rotation!” Reasonable objection… but again I say, “Hold on there, Baba-louie!” First, Minor has had enough major league starts that he isn’t a true rookie in that sense. Plus, he pitched in last year’s playoff push, and pitched quite well, if you’ll recall. Second, Teheran – whom I think wins the #5 spot – will have half a season under his belt before the aforementioned trade deadline. This is the pros, folks. Go big or go home. After 14 or so starts, is he a true rookie? I say no…

So my final assessment says the Braves will start, in no particular order, Huddy, Beachy, Hanson, Teheran & DLowe/Minor. Formidable, and among the best in baseball.

Now… Bourn. (Transition homage to The Scribe…)

4. Ring Finger: What will Bourn make in arb?
A: A lot.

5. Pinky: Will the Braves try to extend Bourn?
A: No. 2 words: Scott Boras. Boras won’t allow an extension; rather he’ll take him all the way to FA. It’s what Boras does. And Boras wants a lot, like DLowe kind of money. The Braves won’t make that commitment to Bourn. I can’t see it.

So that leads to…

6. Antonio Alfonseca’s 6th Finger: Who is the Braves CF in 2013 and beyond, now that Jordan Schafer is gone?
A: The water gets very murky here…

Schafer was not going to be the Braves long term guy anyway. He had his chance, and couldn’t make the step. As far as the farm system goes, they really like Matt Lipka, a SS who they have talked a lot about converting to CF. He’s a tremendous athlete with a ton of speed. He’s very young though (19), and 2013 will be pushing it for him… really pushing it. By the way, I am not sold on Jose Constanza long term, but I suppose you never know. He was hitting .312 with a .361 OBP for the season in AAA before his call-up, so I suppose he could just be a late bloomer. But we’ve had our Charles Thomas moments before.  I need to see more.  Outside the organization, that’s why you trade JJ.

One thing is for certain. I think we have seen what Frank and Fredi’s vision is for this team. In the post PED era, speed is the difference maker.  Pitching has risen to dominance, and good pitching will always beat good hitting, but speed can beat a good pitcher.  Speed can frustrate a good pitcher. There is no defense for it.

Somewhere, Whitey Herzog is smiling…


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336 Responses to “#108: A Handful Of Questions About The Future”

  1. 1 Carolina Lady August 19, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    Superior, Raisins! Excellent thoughts!! And we thank you very much!!


  2. 2 Carolina Lady August 19, 2011 at 4:29 pm

    I did read a comment this morning where Fredi said they were considering a 6-man rotation. Don’t know if it is for the remainder of this year or what.


  3. 3 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    As always, thought provoking commentary by our outstanding staff.


  4. 4 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    I will answer all the points, toe by toe when I settle in. However, I would be surprised if DLowe is wearing an Atlanta uni next season.

    As for JJ, it really depends on how the rest of the season plays out for him as to what his trade value might be. That said, unlike Lowe, which would be a pure and simple salary dump. JJ should command a good return in either high level prospects or possible lead-off man to allow flexibility in dealing with Michael Bourne.


  5. 5 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    And over 77,000 hits now for Ms Carolina Lady’s little blog. I might note, those totals do not include visits made by our esteemed editor in chief or myself…


  6. 6 Carolina Lady August 19, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    🙂 That’s pretty good for a little group like us! I’ve always said that the very BEST are the gentlemen (and FBG) here! Three cheers for Stuffville!!


  7. 7 Voice of Raisins August 19, 2011 at 9:34 pm

    So… I’m watching DLowe scuffle, yet hold the Snakes scoreless through 5. That’s the one thing you cannot take away from Derek… the dude is a mega-battler.

    Arodys looks good… and as I look up, Chipper belts another one to the opposite field.

    Ahh… it’s good to be a Braves fan. 😀


  8. 8 Voice of Raisins August 19, 2011 at 10:56 pm


    Chipper Jones said he will return to play for the Braves in 2012, ending speculation that the Braves’ 39-year-old third baseman might retire after this season and walk away with a year left on his contract.

    “I’m playing next year,” he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Friday.


  9. 9 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2011 at 7:25 am

    Not said by Chipper but implied.. They will have to pry my cold dead fingers away from around the bat handle before I give all this up… 🙂


  10. 10 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2011 at 7:27 am

    One thing noticed in spring training at at games not seen on DOB’s blog is an overwhelming adulation towards Chipper by a huge majority of fans and a respect bordering on fear by fans of other teams for what Chipper has done to them in the past.


  11. 11 Voice of Raisins August 20, 2011 at 9:45 am

    There is a whole lot more to contributing to a team’s success than just the performance on the field.

    Have you noticed that JHey seems to have remembered again how to hit a baseball? Is it due to extra work in the cage? No. Did Larry Parrish actually coach a hitter? No. During a rotation in the cage that they were both in, Chipper noticed that Jason was locking his left arm early on his swing, effectively preventing his right side from leading through the swing. JHey had become all arms. Chipper pointed it out to him and the results have been shown at the plate. Case in point: did you see the low and outside pitch that Jason took down the 3rd base line last night for a double?

    I gain new respect for Chipper every day.


  12. 13 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    Excellent V! SG in length for sure! 🙂
    Glad Chipper is going to stick around for another year! His ability to play Defense is in a way, more important than his hitting, and with his body type, he hasn’t gotten the size of say a Jim Thome, he can still move in on the ball just fine….
    and I like seeing guys that WANT to play, in spite of great career and team success, their huge bankrolls and being sore all of the time. The Jermaine Dye’s of the world (and that lefty starter…have to look him up, Jarrod Washburn, didn’t get great offers and hasn’t pitched since 09 when he was 34!) bug me…I know, you want to spend more time with your family…guess, what??? You are rich! Bring them on the road, move them to the town you play in…sigh….

    V, didn’t know that about Chipper helping out JHey there, great! I also noticed he isn’t diving in as much either….


  13. 14 berigan2electricboogaloo August 22, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Is there yet another new blog??? 😉
    Missed most of the game yesterday (saw the braves not score with the bases loaded-I Think) was in midtown with friends eating at an interesting restaurant with lots of character, I’d upload the pics, but while transferring them to a mini SD card, thought I could erase them off the phone at the same time, wiped them off the card as well! 😦

    Anyway, amazing how this team can win those 1-0 games that a few years ago, they would lose 2-1!

    Storm a-brewin’ Gil and Cl, guess you know this! 😯


  14. 15 Gil in Mechanicsville August 22, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    Are you speaking of the coming of Irene Ber? Pretty sure we will be driving home in the rain Saturday, afraid CL is just going to have to batten down the hatches and ride her out. Good thing the Braves are in Chicago for the next four days…


  15. 16 Carolina Lady August 22, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Well, one thing I know – the track path of a hurricane changes, so if Irene is forecast to hit here this far out, hopefully the track will change between now and then. Gil, you maybe need a relief driver?? But the thing will probably just follow you northward. I hear that Memphis is nice this time of year…..

    Kelly & I had a FABULOUS lunch today!!! Amazing company, fascinating conversation! We were the guests to two people who are so lovely and charming!! Could have talked all day!!! I hated for it to end. Next year, same time??


  16. 17 Gil in Mechanicsville August 23, 2011 at 7:05 am

    The feelings were mutual CL. 🙂 Great food, great company, beautiful ladies, what more could a guy ask for?

    Ok, there was no ball game on but other than that?? 🙂

    Nice win by the Braves last night, lots of stressful innings by the pitching staff but this is a much different Cubs team right now. Can’t take anything for granted.

    Yes, all indications are that this part of the country is developing a big red bulls eye for Irene. Will keep and eye peeled but I am thinking we will be made to leave early this year. I’m pretty brave, I am not stupid…. Besides, will likely have to pump several inches of water from the pool and my mom’s basement.


  17. 18 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 10:10 am

    I listened to a regional forecast this morning… it looks like Wilmington is the odds on favorite at the moment, but as y’all said, that is subject to change as nothing will happen before the weekend. James Spann suggests that Thursday is the day to begin hunkering down, as the course will be much better defined at that point.

    That said, it’s never to early to start planning, anyway…


  18. 19 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Here’s your current track: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/storm/


  19. 20 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Not that I expect Frank to be scouring trade possibilities at the waiver trade deadline, given that the Braves seem to be clicking on all cylinders right now, but here is a list of players who have cleared waivers and could be had:



  20. 21 Gil in Mechanicsville August 23, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Of those listed, I would be interested in Pegan. He is a hard worker and a ball player.


  21. 22 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    Who in their right mind just a few short weeks ago would have thought Dan Uggla would be just 1 HR behind Albert Pujols for the league lead in HR’s on August 23?


  22. 23 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Hey… you good folks on NC:

    You get rattled?


  23. 24 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    … and Virginia, too.

    Did y’all have a whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on?


  24. 25 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    OK, Gil. Tell me you and Ms. Josie are alright. The news says it was centered up there right on top of you guys. 5.9 scale.

    I realize that your net access may be affected, and the ol’ B&S is down a bit on the priority list, but we need to know y’all are OK.

    Check in when you can, please.


  25. 26 Gil in Mechanicsville August 23, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    Well, seeing as how we are currently in Holden Beach NC. We are really just cooling our heels awaiting news on the path of Irene… Josie is stressed because she is worried about he china cabinet. Me, I am not worried, it is why I have insurance….

    I’m guessing we are going to get the notice to leave friday. That’s okay, was kind of anticipated that all along.

    I subscribe to the Brother Dave Gardner philosophy of as along as you can say “what was that?” You are okay… 🙂

    Of course I can imagine our cat likely had a seizure but that is another story in itself…


  26. 27 berigan2electricboogaloo August 23, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    Just sent an email to Gil, but V, you are right of course, power/internet may be down. Hope all is well there and in N.C.!


  27. 28 Carolina Lady August 23, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    There wuz a whole lot of shakin’ goin’ on for about 45 seconds! Very, very strange because it was totally silent. That’s when I fully realized that it was a quake and not my house about to fall into a sink hole. Don’t laugh, there are some BIG cracks in the foundation that run all the way up to the roof line. Estimates of $30,000 to repair. A sink hole would be a blessing because I actually have ins. coverage for it! I’d just want time to get Kelly, the cat and my flashdrive out.

    For anyone who has yet to meet Gil and Miss Josie, you are in for a special treat when you do! (He didn’t even ask me about his press credentials!)

    V, I keep an emergency “box” prepared 24/7/365. We can easily survive for 2 weeks without outside help – and that includes cat food and litter! 😀


  28. 29 Voice of Raisins August 23, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    $30K… wow. Just wow…


  29. 30 berigan2electricboogaloo August 24, 2011 at 4:35 am

    CL, you are on that long list of folks I need to help WHEN I win the lottery! 🙂


  30. 31 Gil in Mechanicsville August 24, 2011 at 10:38 am

    I have had to resort to using Holden Beach’s version of high speed internet to watch the Braves games. It drives me a little batty sometimes because it hangs between pitches/plays often… A lot like having a cell phone conversation in an area with bad reception. Oh well, at least I get most of it. Sometimes I really miss my house…

    Josie has already reserved this house for next year. Personally, I would like to come in late September but it is her vacation so I deal with it, after all, she’s worth it.

    Now baseball…. J-Hey trying to play (okay hit) his way back into the good graces of Freddie Gonzalas it appears. If he will continue with his current approach of a shorter swing and hitting the outside pitch away, he could return as a force. I think it is a little too late to worry about this season but he is going to be needed to step up for many years to come.

    Happens to a lot of young players who get homer happy and take that big long swing trying to go for distance. Heyward has enough pop to hit em 400 feet without the Scott Thormanesk whooshing swing. There are few secrets in baseball these days. Too many cameras for that.

    I thought Mike Minor pitch a nice game last night. Okay, gave up a gopher ball to Soriano but the game was only close because Hinske cannot pick the throw from Gonzo like Freddi can. It is almost like how we got spoiled seeing Andruw Jones make plays in centerfield when we watch FF pick’em out of the dirt at firstbase.


  31. 32 Voice of Raisins August 25, 2011 at 7:07 am

    Y’all tying everything down up there in NC?


  32. 33 Gil in Mechanicsville August 25, 2011 at 8:36 am

    Yep, headed home ahead of the storm tomorrow. That way I can at least be in a familiar place when the lights go out. Besides, my SUV doesn’t swim very well….

    Kinda of a disappointing game last night. Lowe deserved better. Two of the runs he gave up were legit, the Braves defense has gotten a bit lackadaisical. (blog first) 🙂


  33. 34 Voice of Raisins August 25, 2011 at 10:23 am

    Disappointing indeed.. the Phils lost as well. Coulda picked up a game.

    That said, I am perfectly happy with the Wild Card. In fact, once they clinch it, I hope they rest guys, set up the rotation and forget about chasing Philly.

    And yes, DLowe deserved better, but he’s handicapped the other 8 a few times, too. I’m just glad he’s showing that he has something left in the tank.


  34. 35 Voice of Raisins August 25, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Early game today, Ber. 2:20pm local time. WAKE UP!!! 😀


  35. 36 Voice of Raisins August 25, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    2day’s lineup:

    1. Bourn to run, CF
    2. Meh-teeen, 3B
    3. Mac, C
    4. Popeye, 2B
    5. ROY, 1B
    6. Gonzo, SS
    7. JHey, RF
    8. George, LF
    9. Beachy, RHP


  36. 37 Voice of Raisins August 25, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    Let’s see… open the game with a couple of singles and a 3 run bomb. Me likey… 😀


  37. 38 Gil in Mechanicsville August 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    So, BMac goes yard twice today, rest of the crew chips in to take 3 of 4 from the Cubs. Nice run for the Bravos right now. Should know when they are going to play the likely Sunday rainout by the time they get to New York.

    Going back home a day early to A) Beat the rush up 95 (I cheat and take 301) B) Get everything lined up at home to weather the storm. I know we won’t have the wind like CL is going to get but we will get lots and lots of rain…

    Worse case is for the trees to knock out the power line but ever sense Va Power got lambasted and fined for failing to keep their right of ways cleared, they have been much better at preventing wide scale black outs.


  38. 39 Carolina Lady August 25, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Have a safe trip back, Gil! The only left to do here is fill all the water jugs and board up the sliding glass doors. The center of Irene is expected to come ashore just north of me (I’m guessing at this point probably 50 miles), but not nearly far enough north to suit me. The thing is so widespread! I’d be surprised if we don’t lose power and cable and who knows when it will be back. Sometimes rather quickly, sometimes several lifetimes – or so it seems. (The 1-2 punch of Bertha and Fran in 96 left me without power or cable for 2 weeks but that a whole different ballgame!)

    I think I need some chocolate.


  39. 40 Gil in Mechanicsville August 25, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    Josie and I will be thinking about you and Kelly, you have my number if you need anything…


  40. 41 Carolina Lady August 25, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    Thanks, Gil! Y’all be safe!


  41. 42 berigan2electricboogaloo August 25, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Yep, you all be safe! Sounds like use guys are more prepared than most folks….you know, if the storm did anything wacky,(zigged, when it should have zaggged) I saw one of those “when weather attacks” shows, on the Weather Channel, and one family put a mattress on top of themselves during a hurricane, and hung on, not the worst Idea in the world!


  42. 43 berigan2electricboogaloo August 25, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    V, you weren’t loud enough! I slept thru the first few innings, and also thinking all the games were night games, went looking for the game tonight…D’oh! At least they won!


  43. 44 Voice of Raisins August 26, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Here is a summary of the rescheduling of the Mets series, courtesy of the ajc:

    … their Sunday game scheduled for 1:10 p.m. has been postponed, and Saturday’s 4:10 p.m. start has been moved up three hours to 1:10 p.m.

    Of course, some of you may not have any power to take in the games, anyway… 😕

    Mr. O’B also noted on his Twitter that the team would be leaving NYC immediately after the Saturday game is completed. He said, “Charter will be gassed and running.” Get the heck outta Dodge while the gettin’ is good. Also, I can imagine that alot of the east coast air traffic will be diverted to the ATL hub. Glad I’m not travelling…


  44. 45 Voice of Raisins August 26, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    And now Saturday’s game has been cancelled as well. Apparently NYC is shutting down their public transportation at noon tomorrow. So, there is a short 1 game series tonight with the Mutts. Does that automatically make this the “rubber game”?


  45. 46 Gil in Mechanicsville August 26, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    Well, looks like the make up date could be a twin bill then. Good thing the Braves have a big lead in the wild card. Plus it should be after the rosters expand… Will have the look of a split squad game.

    Little bad weather is expected tonight. Will hit us with rain tomorrow. Likely means no satellite reception. I fear CL will catch quite a bit of this storm.


  46. 47 Voice of Raisins August 26, 2011 at 9:23 pm


    Big Red has a small tear in his rotator cuff. I was afraid of that, but didn’t dare utter the words.

    Here’s the story:



  47. 48 berigan2electricboogaloo August 27, 2011 at 1:35 am

    Gil, is satellite how you get internet???
    Can’t win them all, but there are times when Freddi G manages like a previous manager. I know there are some holes in the bullpen, but WHEN Venters has arm trouble, then what??? Why was he brought in when we were down 4 to nothing? because they will have two days off?
    Linebrink’s era goes down, after being terrible, so I guess he can keep pitching…
    And how does Capuano , after giving up 4 or more runs in 6 of his last 7 starts, pitch the best game of this year (and his career?) against the braves??? Oh right, he throws with his left arm. 😕
    Sorry to hear about Tommy…I didn’t really think he was a slacker….hopefully it can heal, hope he doesn’t pitch til next year…
    Seems funny to talk baseball with more important stuff going on. Stay safe Gil and Margie! Praying for rain, and not much else!


  48. 49 Voice of Raisins August 27, 2011 at 7:55 am

    Yes, Ber, Venters came in because he hadn’t pitched in a couple of days, and the Braves now have 3 days off. He needed the work. Linebrink needs to go look for Proctor.

    Now on to more important things…

    Hang on, CL!!! 😯


  49. 50 Gil in Mechanicsville August 27, 2011 at 9:55 am

    And how does Capuano , after giving up 4 or more runs in 6 of his last 7 starts, pitch the best game of this year (and his career?

    Remember the formula for 1-5 pitchers and the expectations. Your 1 and 2 guys should give you good efforts everytime out. That expectation diminishes as you drop lower in the pecking order. That said, even a blind squirrel can find a nut once in a while.

    No Ber, I have cable for my internet and DirecTV for my television.

    We have not gotten much of the storm so far.

    As I speak. my TV reception is going crappy. I suppose Margie is watching TV by candlelight by now… 🙂


  50. 51 berigan2electricboogaloo August 27, 2011 at 10:20 am

    Gil, 😆


  51. 52 Carolina Lady August 27, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    Hello, world! Power is back, Irene is leaving, the a/c is removing the humidity and I have a cup of REAL coffee! Rough 24 hours and I’m going to need some MAJOR help cleaning up the yard but I’ll take it in comparison to what it could have been if it had not degraded as it did. Haven’t been able to check the roof yet – still too windy – but judging by the noise, it took a pounding.

    Gil, you are too funny! Everybody KNOWS that during a hurricane, you watch TV by hurricane lamp! 😀

    I have no idea what has been on the news – power went out fairly early last night and we kept the radio on a local station – but I gather that the Braves lost last night. (Shame on me, I don’t even know who they were playing!)

    I think I’m just going to rest (no sleep last night) and start putting everything back together tomorrow.

    Thanks for your prayers, my friends! 🙂


  52. 53 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2011 at 7:58 am

    WELL, that was certainly inconvenient… Got about 4 inches of rain, 2 inches of pine tags and the power out for 12 hours.


  53. 54 Carolina Lady August 28, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Fun, fun, fun, huh, Gil? My front yard is bad enough but the back yard is knee deep. WHY did I ever think that an acre of land was so great??!!!
    Bad shoulders, bad knee, bad back and it’s 95 degrees outside. 😀


  54. 55 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    Margie, in a few months, it will be cooler, and turning into mulch! 😛


  55. 56 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    Went out on the ATV path to check out the ‘forest’ … Lost a very large (well, not lost really since I know where it is) sweet gum. It left a huge hole in my path from the root ball. I would estimate it is about 3 foot in diameter and about 90 foot tall long. I just knew I should have bought that sawmill. Hate to turn all that wood into firewood.


  56. 57 berigan2electricboogaloo August 29, 2011 at 6:34 am

    nice article on Chipper’s all time rank amongst 3rd basemen…



  57. 58 Gil in Mechanicsville August 29, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Interesting piece Ber, now, think about it, to be in the top 10 of all the players who ever played a particular position given the huge number of players who actually have played major league baseball.

    That might be an even greater achievement than being in the top ten Presidents of the United States. Of course, given the quality of those presidents in the last several years, that might be too easy..

    One has to wonder. however, who might have been the best for the amount of time they played. So many good player’s careers cut short by injuries, wars, etc…

    I saw all of those players mentioned play, some a lot more than others. I don’t really remember Eddie Mathews but I saw Brooks Robinson a lot. The guy was amazing with the glove. He was not the offensive force in the Oriole’s line-up but when you have guys like Boog Powell, Eddie Murray and Cal Ripkin, do you really need another long ball hitter?

    Wade Boggs was an artist with a bat. Chipper could have had a higher batting average too if he had gone the Tony Gwen route. That said, you leave the singles to the Rapheal Belliards and the Jose Constanzas, Chipper, like McCann are suppose to hit the ball a long way.

    The amazing thing about Chipper is the fact he could hit for power from both sides of the plate as well as hit for average. We will miss him when he is finally gone..


  58. 60 Gil in Mechanicsville August 29, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Yes, the Braves have the pitching talent to trade for what they need. Personally, I love a crowd when it comes to pitching prospects. I say again, you cannot have too many…

    On Derek Lowe, I cannot see the Braves just giving him away and paying him $15 million. I know the Braves would like to do a salary dump but I think it would take another team picking up at least half of the 15 mil.

    Note: worse thing a fan can hear coming out of a GM’s mouth is ” We will spend what it takes to be competitive”… Translation… We plan to suck every nickle we can out of this town while looking it’s fans straight in the eye and lying about how the team is a good product.

    Seen it too many times….


  59. 61 flbravesgirl August 30, 2011 at 12:12 am

    Glad to see everyone’s OK! Been there, done that with the no-power-no-ac-yard’s-a-mess routine so you have my sympathy.

    I’ll be glad to get our boys playing tomorrow night. Feels like a week since I’ve seen a game.


  60. 62 flbravesgirl August 30, 2011 at 12:15 am

    Also wanted to let y’all know that Grinchy has written a wonderful piece about Chipper on Braveswire.com.


  61. 63 Gil in Mechanicsville August 30, 2011 at 5:59 am

    Hey Jenn, long time no see…. By the way, I agree on the long absence of the Braves on TV has been weird.


  62. 64 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 10:21 am

    How about this factoid from Mr. O’B:

    Since the start of the 2009 season, Michael Bourn has more steals (160) than Jose Reyes (75) and Jimmy Rollins (76) combined.

    Now, of course the two aforementioned northern aggressors have each spent significant amounts of time on the DL, but that’s still quite a feat for those mighty fleet feet.

    Perhaps we should effort to lock this fella up for a few more years after all, regardless of his agent’s wishes…


  63. 65 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Congrats Julio Teheran, International League MVP and ROY.

    Now there’s a nice season for ya…


  64. 66 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    2night’s lineup:

    1. Bourn to run, CF
    2. Meh Prado, LF
    3. Mac, C
    4. Popeye, 2B
    5. Old Man Jones, 3B
    6. Fred Flintstone, 1B
    7. Gonzo, SS
    8. JHey, RF
    9. JJ, RHP


  65. 67 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Jon Paul Morosi over at FOXsports says that Frank is actively looking for bench help. He isn’t specific, though.


  66. 68 Gil in Mechanicsville August 30, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Sigh, another day, another grandchild having a birthday… Honestly, am I required to remember them all? I know each of their names, isn’t that enough?

    Bench help.. Oh the humanity, call a carpenter quick.. I thought Chino was gone…

    And J-Hey batting eight… Well, I guess somebody has to do it, at least he is in the line up. Nothing like getting shown up by a 27 year old scrub to motivate you…


  67. 69 Gil in Mechanicsville August 30, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Lots of folks still without power around here. Turns out Josie and I were lucky, we are on the same power grid as the local hospital. Helps having friends in high places… Helps more to just have friends…

    So? Is everyone ready for some baseball??? Ber? You awake?


  68. 70 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    Yes. When are the Braves gonna start? 🙄


  69. 71 Voice of Raisins August 30, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    What is it with these stinkin’ Nats?


  70. 72 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2011 at 6:54 am

    Better question, what is it with JJ?

    Always said, I hated facing a team coming in with a long losing streak. Nats had lost 6 in a row coming in.


  71. 73 berigan2electricboogaloo August 31, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Gil, I was going to quote you, but you had so many funny posts, I didn’t know where to start! 😆 Lets just say you were on a roll!

    Now baseball…umm, err…hmmm…. Well Livan Hernandez is clearly going to with the Cy Young this year….


  72. 74 berigan2electricboogaloo August 31, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Wow, didn’t see this trade!

    from MLBTR
    Braves Acquire Matt Diaz
    By Tim Dierkes [August 31 at 10:32am CST]

    Matt Diaz is returning to the Braves, as the Pirates announced they’ve traded him to Atlanta for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Diaz fits the Braves’ desire to add a bench bat, and of course they had him in the organization from 2006-10 before non-tendering him last winter.

    Diaz, 33, is hitting .259/.303/.324 in 231 plate appearances for the Pirates this year while playing mostly right field. He was signed to a two-year, $4.25MM deal in December, but hasn’t shown the expected power production against left-handed pitchers. The Pirates’ press release does not say anything about the Braves receiving money, so GM Neal Huntington did well in unloading the $2MM owed to Diaz next year.

    ESPN’s Buster Olney first tweeted news of the trade.



  73. 75 Voice of Raisins August 31, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    Buster says the Braves aren’t done:


  74. 76 Voice of Raisins August 31, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    And Matty is expected to be in the dugout tonight. Wonder whose 24-man roster spot he takes?


  75. 77 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    Who is hurt? Jose’ going back down until tomorrow? Linebrink DLed? Hey we can only hope, right?


  76. 78 Voice of Raisins August 31, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Prolly a pitcher, given that Moylan will come off the DL before the playoffs, and is playoff eligible having been on the 60 day DL. Won’t be Constanza. Bet it’ll be Linedrive. Of course, there is still time for more tinkering, which could affect the move as well.

    If I were a betting man, I’d bet that Frank is done dealing, Matty is added, Linebrink is DFA’d, and one of the better Gwinnett relievers – Anthony Varvaro or Jairo Asencio – is brought up tomorrow when rosters expand.


  77. 79 Voice of Raisins August 31, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    Sherrill on DL with elbow soreness. Convenient.


  78. 80 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    Actually, I’m happy Matty D is back, thought he should have stayed in the first place.

    Sherrill eh? Well, I kind of had him in mind behind Linebrink… Still, maybe he was the lessor of two evils…


  79. 81 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Wouldn’t mind picking up Mike Morse from the Nats but I think that ship sailed a long time ago. Dude has some definite pop…


  80. 82 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Lowe really had good movement on his pitches tonight, maybe he is just not a hot weather guy. Like Steve Avery, but different…

    Nice to see Matty go 2 for 3 tonight, too bad AGon is batting behind him, maybe they should bat Gonzalas ninth.


  81. 83 Voice of Raisins August 31, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    Boy, frank made some tremendous depth moves today. Great moves…


  82. 84 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2011 at 6:03 am

    Jack Wilson… I always viewed him as a Walt Weiss kind of guy. Do they play ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ when he comes to the plate?

    I think it will be interesting as to whom makes the 25 man roster for the play-offs. My guess is Lugo won’t be one of them…

    By the way, wins are way more fun to watch than losses.


  83. 85 berigan2electricboogaloo September 1, 2011 at 8:06 am

    Hadn’t really noticed, since Lugo hit a bit at first, but wow, he had really tanked the last month or however long he has been here…
    Jack Wilson was/is a human highlight reel, and no doubt is tickled to be in a race after being stuck in Seattle and Pittsburg so many years…
    Like V said, some very good moves!


  84. 86 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2011 at 10:01 am

    To be fair to Lugo, he was an experiment that has played itself out. Just fell victim to father time and lack of reps. That and slow bat speed. Could still play in the infield a bit. Low risk, low reward in that move…

    Now Wilson, I wonder if AGon might hear footsteps? This might be his last year in Atlanta if Jack can still hit a bit.


  85. 87 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2011 at 10:09 am

    The thing about baseball, there is always someone who could go on the DL at any given moment. Some are even legit….

    Okay, time to get off the old CPU and haul brush to the land fill. always a fun job.

    Did I mention I dropped in on my mom’s place and found one of her 100 year old cedars broken in half. Another chore to get it cleaned up but the good thing is it blocked the driveway so as to keep out trespassers. Still, the cedar is a good 24 to 30 inches in diameter. Maybe I could talk the sawmill salesman into letting me try one out for 30 days.


  86. 88 Voice of Raisins September 1, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    So… a few moves today.

    Pitcher Dustin Richardson was outrighted to AAA after clearing waivers, opening a spot on the 40 man for Jack Wilson. He’s here tonight and will be activated tomorrow.

    Wes Helms was released. Apparently, he’s injured and he didn’t think he’d be able to help the team.

    Anthony Varvaro and J.C. Boscan have joined the big club and are available tonight. Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado will be up soon. Should be all of the call-ups.

    Peter Moylan will also be activated soon.

    And there ya have it…


  87. 89 Gil in Mechanicsville September 2, 2011 at 6:50 am

    Most encouraging signs taken from last night’s game against the Nats… Jason Heyward really putting some good swings on the ball. Folks, the Braves need for J-Hey to break out for them go go deep into the play=offs this year.


  88. 90 Voice of Raisins September 2, 2011 at 8:53 am

    Didn’t see the game last night, but listened to some. Huddy is… well, Huddy. He is a rock. I give him the ball in game 1 of the NLDS easily.

    I am worried about JJ’s knee. It’s obvious that it is an issue, and needs to be resolved in time for him to pitch in October. Guys, October is only 4 weeks away.

    Our playoff rotation could easily be Huddy, Beachy, DLowe and if a 4th is needed, Minor. Would anyone have imagined THAT in July?


  89. 91 Gil in Mechanicsville September 2, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    Well, did anyone really think the Braves would be without Chipper and Marteen for the play-off last year going into June? Going to be interesting though, good chance to watch the kids this weekend.

    I still say JJ’s problems were escalated with his AS appearance, not sure on who to blame Hanson’s woes on quite yet but give me time, I’ll find a scapegoat somewhere… .


  90. 92 Gil in Mechanicsville September 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    And… as predicted, the Braves have released Lugo… Remember, you heard it here first. Okay, I know, that was a really easy one to predict but still…

    Tomorrow’s lottery numbers to follow….


  91. 93 Voice of Raisins September 2, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    The locker strikes again…


  92. 94 Gil in Mechanicsville September 3, 2011 at 8:39 am

    BOOOOOOO….. I thought the Braves could hold a 5 run lead…


  93. 95 Voice of Raisins September 3, 2011 at 11:27 am


    Dish Network has MLB Network now!!!

    I am a very happy dude!!!



  94. 96 Voice of Raisins September 3, 2011 at 11:32 am


    I get to see the Braves highlites on MLB Network!! 😀

    Oh, dadgummit… I saw the Braves highlites on MLB Network. 😐


  95. 97 berigan2electricboogaloo September 4, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Man, today we get the great Dodgers pitcher…
    V, glad you finally got MLB TV! Much needed right now even….15 minutes straight of college football before I saw any baseball highlights, and they were about 15 second highlights on espn….MLBTV was not doing highlights the one hour I was watching in the early am


  96. 98 Gil in Mechanicsville September 5, 2011 at 4:41 am

    I must say, winning sure beats losing no matter who you are… Being totally honest about it, I did not think the Braves had a chance of coming back on the Dodgers, goes to show how much I know. Then again, I thought the Braves would hold a 5 run lead on Friday too.

    Now the Braves will be chasing the weather for a week or so. I’m thinking the games might get rained out completely in New York. Depends on if they will make a difference in the standings at the end of the season would be my guess.


  97. 99 Gil in Mechanicsville September 5, 2011 at 10:25 am

    Okay folks, looks like rain in the forecast for the week if you live on the east coast from Florida to Maine. I know you guys in Georgia are parched but the mushroom spores have gone crazy here.

    I hope everyone enjoys the final holiday of the summer.


  98. 100 Voice of Raisins September 5, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    We were forecast for 6-9 inches of rain beginning last night. Thus far, we’ve barely been spit on…


  99. 101 berigan2electricboogaloo September 5, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    bet you have been spat upon by now! 😉


  100. 102 Voice of Raisins September 5, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    Not much. It rained kinda steady for about 20 minutes. Now… nuthin’.


  101. 103 berigan2electricboogaloo September 5, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    V, we didn’t get much rain in Jonesboro either…but as you know, tornadoes, and heavy rain to the west and north!
    now baseball…methinks we will have lots of free time come October…sigh….


  102. 104 Gil in Mechanicsville September 6, 2011 at 8:41 am

    Yes, last night’s game was pretty ugly if you are a Braves fan. While I thought DLowe pitched much better than his line indicated (two ground balls just out of the reach for Prado at third that would have ended threats and a non-called third strike on Pence) It was what it was. When Freddie brought in Linebrink, I knew he had thrown in the towel….

    The one bright spot was Peter Moylan. Other than the adventurous flay ball to left to start, I thought he had good movement on his pitches. Now, if the Braves can just score enough to be able to get to the bullpen, they might have a chance.

    Speaking of chance… DO the Braves seem lethargic to anyone else but me? Can’t put my finger on it but it seems as if they are going through the motions… Been that way for a couple of weeks now. Maybe it’s just me…


  103. 105 Gil in Mechanicsville September 6, 2011 at 8:47 am

    By the way, it’s been raining here all night… 😦 I’m really getting a bit tired of it. Most of the heavy rain is forecast to the west of us this time. Was to the east with Irene.

    Down to just a few folks without power today in the aftermath of Irene here locally. One of the radio stations had a contest going on who would be the last one in Richmond to get their power back. Looks like the winner will be some lucky/unlucky soul on the southside.

    One thing for sure, power lines, trees and wind are a recipe for misery…

    I would venture to guess all those crews from Georgia Power will be headed home today for another round of 16 hour days.


  104. 106 Voice of Raisins September 6, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    Maybe… just maybe we got 1 inch of rain here in J-town. At one point, there was a huge blob of red and yellow on the radar that had one little circle of green on the middle. Guess where that was?

    I’ve never seen anything like it… 😐


  105. 107 Gil in Mechanicsville September 6, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    I got about 1/4 inch last night and another 1/2 inch today. Mushrooms (toadstools) are popping….


  106. 108 Gil in Mechanicsville September 7, 2011 at 7:15 am

    And speaking of toadstools… Anybody else watch the Braves last night? Ugh…


  107. 109 berigan2electricboogaloo September 7, 2011 at 7:30 am

    Nope, missed it…my Dad’s best friend is in town, and we go out to eat every night(Dads friend says we are saving him a ton of moola on a hotel room, so he pays, who are we to argue? 😉 ) then they want to watch stuff that is not baseball related…so I am just catching bits and pieces of the games til saturday….season is going way too quickly for my taste. Did use guys know the last regular season game is Sept. 28th??? 😦
    And I fear we are seeing that we are boys playing a men’s game….I guess their is a reason the Phillies are 40+ games above .500. And when your fifth starter has a sub 3.00 ERA and is 11 and 1….
    Come on V, (or anyone) give me some hope we won’t just be one and done in the playoffs…..


  108. 110 Voice of Raisins September 7, 2011 at 7:53 am

    “Hope” carries a bad context these days, Ber. I have had all the “hope” I can stand.


  109. 111 berigan2electricboogaloo September 7, 2011 at 8:15 am

    I hear ya brother V! Ok…a reason to feel optimistic???


  110. 112 Carolina Lady September 7, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Optimism?? ummmm, they get to try again next year??


  111. 113 Voice of Raisins September 7, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    I am optimistic that the Braves will take the field tonight.


  112. 114 Gil in Mechanicsville September 7, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    I wouldn’t bet the farm on that one happening, lots of rain still. We got another 3 inches today. That is 4 inches in 24 hours…


  113. 115 berigan2electricboogaloo September 7, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    CL, V 😆 Thanks, you really have given me some confidence in the future! :p


  114. 116 Voice of Raisins September 8, 2011 at 6:57 am

    That… sucked.


  115. 117 Gil in Mechanicsville September 8, 2011 at 8:29 am

    Yep, well, at least it was interesting. The Phillies at least made us think the Braves had a chance. The team has been very lackadaisical for about two weeks now.


  116. 118 berigan2electricboogaloo September 8, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Blah Humbug


  117. 119 Voice of Raisins September 8, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    Ber!!! Stay awake! 4:00pm start today for the 1st of 2!


  118. 120 Voice of Raisins September 8, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    2day’s lineup:
    1. Bourn cf
    2. Jones 3b
    3. McCann c
    4. Uggla 2b
    5. Freeman 1b
    6. Prado lf
    7. Heyward rf
    8. Gonzalez ss
    9. Minor p


    Maybe they’ll pound the Mutts in their frustration and I can get excited again… 😐


  119. 121 Voice of Raisins September 9, 2011 at 7:15 am

    OK… that’ll work. 😀


  120. 122 Voice of Raisins September 9, 2011 at 7:57 am

    Nice little assessment here from MLBTR:


    I have to say that I am very much in agreement with most of the author’s opinions…. most specifically that the Braves are mostly set in their positions, but will have to address SS and could address LF. Look, I like Martin Prado as much as a straight man can, but he is not in the conversation of top notch LF’s in MLB. He is one of the best utility players in the game, though, and would best serve this team in that role. If the Braves could acquire a real LF – a HR threat that can get on base consistently – and let Martin be the crack filler he was in 2010, we would take a huge step forward.

    As for SS, there is no bigger fan than me of Gonzo’s defense. He’s maybe the best I’ve seen in Turner Field. But I gotta say, Jack Wilson has the same reputation, and is probably a better hitter. He reminds me alot of Walt Weiss. Given that both are FA’s at the end of this season, the Braves are going to have to do something in that area. It’s a good bet that they’ll try to bring one of those guys back on a 1 or 2 year deal while Tyler Pastornacky puts the finishing touches on prepping for the big show. WIll it be Gonzo? Will it be Wilson? Gonzo loves t in Atlanta, and loves playing for Fredi. All indications are that Wilson is ecstatic to be here as well.

    Who would you go with? The familiarity and defensive prowess of Gonzo? The reputation and potential of Wilson? That’s a tough one for me, but I think I give Wilson the nod. The guy is a gamer… a grinder. He is everything that Jeff Blauser and Walt Weiss was, but more talented. Personally, I’ve seem enough of Gonzo wailing away at bad pitches. But his defense… wow. Then again, in his short time in the Tomahawk, Wilson has provided a few gems himself.


  121. 123 Gil in Mechanicsville September 9, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    “It was good to hit one. A little insurance run. It’s nice to contribute offensively. I haven’t felt good at the plate lately. Today I felt a little better. Chipper let me use his bat today. It’s a little heavier. That bat hit two home runs today. I took BP with his bat and I had a good BP and our hitting coach said ‘You should use that.’ It feels good so I used it and got two hits and two RBIs. He needs to send a box of bats to my locker or I’m going to start stealing them when we get home.” David Ross


  122. 124 Gil in Mechanicsville September 9, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    If I were Chipper, I would give him a dozen and a gift certificate for “Buck Commanders”

    Yeah, I agree on the Jack Wilson assessment, perhaps he will get a chance to addition. He sure impressed me.

    Maybe Alec has a nagging injury we don’t know about but Wilson’s substitution for him came after Gonzo had a brain infarct and nearly let Ross’s throw sail into center field. Alex has played a lot this year so who knows.

    I do think we will see a little more of Jack ‘Flash’ this month.


  123. 125 Voice of Raisins September 9, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    I think we will, Gil. 2 reasons…

    1st, we now have a bona fide SS to backup Alex. Because we haven’t had that backup all season, Alex has logged alot of innings. Alot. He could use some time off.

    2nd, it’s pretty much an on field audition. Gotta sign a veteran to a short term deal. Both guys are perfect candidates.


  124. 126 Voice of Raisins September 9, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    2night’s lineup:
    1. Bourn, CF
    2. Chipper, 3B
    3. Mac, C
    4. Uggla, 2B
    5. Freddie, 1B
    6. Prado, LF
    7. Heyward, RF
    8. Wilson, SS
    9. Delgado, RHP

    It should be noted that Gonzo is out of the lineup again…


  125. 127 Gil in Mechanicsville September 9, 2011 at 5:48 pm

    Aha… And the plot thickens… 🙂

    Okay Frank, we all now know that the B&S blog is on your own personal “must read” list for the expert insight given.

    Time to cut the middle man and just e-mail us direct…. I’m pretty sure Raisins and Ber can be available, me??? Will cost you air fare.. 🙂


  126. 128 Voice of Raisins September 10, 2011 at 6:19 am



  127. 129 berigan2electricboogaloo September 10, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Indeed…Fredi has a bit of Bobby in him…does he see Linkbrink’s era and say 3.70 is a good era for a reliever, just hasn’t gotten the breaks?
    I mean, we ALL know the game is over when he comes in, why doesn’t Fredi???
    It’s September, the season ends in little more than 2 weeks (sniff, sniff) he isn’t going to regain his form (shoot what form? Just looked him up to see his era after the run yesterday-4.66 in 2009, 4.40 in 2010-no wonder Chicago was willing to pay him to pitch for us!) No doubt someone has to have a stat showing how many inherited runners have scored when he comes in, I’d say he has to be in the top 10, if not the top 5 in the league. WHY IS HE STILL HERE????

    And something else I wanted to mention, a bit unfair, but still…I saw highlights in the last few days of two balls getting past Freeman down the line, late in games…true, one time it was an opposite field hit, still…its again like the days of Bobby, Guard the line late in the game! Singles are still less of a problem than doubles, I believe….


  128. 130 Gil in Mechanicsville September 10, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I stayed until the bitter end last night but I knew it was over when Linebrink came in.

    Still did not get to sleep until after 3:30 AM…

    Late inning walks are the bane of any ball team. Thinking Venters hits the wall in September. Kimbrel? Hey, got to give up some runs sometime… It’s in the book…


  129. 131 berigan2electricboogaloo September 11, 2011 at 7:18 am

    Braves sure want to make a once dull wild card race exciting, eh what???
    What’s funny, is the fans of just about every playoff team I see on that Jazz forum I read, is in near panic mode, especially Red Sox fans. Their starting rotation is even more banged up than ours. The Yankees have some sore armed pitchers and Nick Swisher as well…Tampa is making a strong run, in and now their closer Kyle Farnsworth has a sore elbow…Every team save the Phils seems to have some pretty major issues….


  130. 132 berigan2electricboogaloo September 11, 2011 at 7:20 am

    If you have never seen Jack Buck’s 9-11 poem, read months before dying, check it out. It’s worth 3 + minutes of your time…


  131. 133 Carolina Lady September 11, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    That’s beautiful, Ber. Thanks for posting!


  132. 134 Voice of Raisins September 11, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    The Dawgs got beat again, the Falcons looked awful, and the Braves got swept in St. Louis. Not a stellar weekend for us sports fans in the N GA foothills.



  133. 135 Gil in Mechanicsville September 12, 2011 at 7:35 am

    I’m a badddd fan -( , I just could not bear to watch the Braves this weekend so I did other stuff. I know this is just a rough patch but still, the futility is disheartening.

    Denny Hamlin did make the chase and the Redskins looked surprisingly stout against the Giants and Va Tech escaped East Carolina with a win. Three out of four can’t be all bad I suppose.

    At the end of the day, 29 MLB teams are going to end their season with a loss. Same is true in every other sport except NASCAR where you don’t even have to win a race to be crowned champion. Maybe that’s a little screwed up too…


  134. 136 berigan2electricboogaloo September 12, 2011 at 10:18 am

    Glad you liked it CL! 🙂
    Now baseb…oh nevermind…Red Sox are only 3 1/2 ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays, and most everyone seems to think they will lose their lead on the Wildcard. Braves are 4 1/2 up….Still, win a few games in a row, and it will be over for the Cards….

    I’ve been meaning to do a post about how good several ex braves are doing this year, but until then….here are two fun facts….Melky has 39 doubles, Frenchy 44 doubles. No braves has more 31 doubles. Of course, no one, NO ONE wanted either to be in a braves uni at the start of 2011, weird, eh what???


  135. 137 Voice of Raisins September 13, 2011 at 7:41 am

    I fell asleep in extra innings. Apparently, I didn’t miss anything… 😐

    Horrible timing for a nosedive.


  136. 138 berigan2electricboogaloo September 13, 2011 at 10:37 am

    V, this run FEELS like the Braves in October….impossible to get a hit with runners in scoring position. Everyone seems to have a slider speed bat. Why? Clearly McCann came back too soon, I mean, .154 BA since coming back from the DL? And it’s killing him…he needs a day or three off…Prado was losing sleep. And least he and Alex seem to be hitting better…Heyward would be a 4th outfielder on most teams right now. At least his swing looks better. Then there is the starting rotation. We may be paying DLowe to pitch in AA next year, like KK did this year…He’s 38, Hudson is 36…neither is a power pitcher, you know, the kind of pitcher that teams need to get out of the first round…sigh….


  137. 139 Gil in Mechanicsville September 13, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    A losing streak is a terrible thing to endure. So much like the Padre’s classic fall last year. It seemed like every mistake the Braves made came back to haunt them, the Marlins were playing like… well. I’m not exactly sure but they were sure playing better ball…


  138. 140 Gil in Mechanicsville September 14, 2011 at 6:53 am

    Okay, that’s more like it. Nobody said it was going to be easy.


  139. 141 Gil in Mechanicsville September 14, 2011 at 9:34 am

    Nothing a like a 3 run homer to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside… Actually, the most encouraging thing might be AGon’s ability to make contact with the ball.


  140. 142 berigan2electricboogaloo September 14, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Gil, no joke, I was going to write, that’s more like it…great minds, something something! 😉
    AGon looks like a new man at the plate, doesn’t he??? It is now looking much harder for the Cards and they will be going to Philly this weekend…that’s where dreams go to die, I believe! 🙂


  141. 143 Voice of Raisins September 14, 2011 at 10:15 am



  142. 144 Voice of Raisins September 14, 2011 at 10:18 am

    2day’s lineup:

    1. Bourn to run, CF
    2. Chipper, 3B
    3. Fredo, 1B
    4. Sluggla, 2B
    5. Mac, C
    6. Sleepless, LF
    7. JHey, RF
    8. Gonzo, SS
    9. Delgado, RHP


  143. 145 Gil in Mechanicsville September 14, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    Gonzo’s back must have really been hurting for a long time, looks like the guy who showed up after the trade of Escobar again. Big 3 run gopher today by Alex. I guess the opposition will go to J-Hey for the outs now.

    That’s not completely fair either because I think the big rook is playing with an injury. He has not been able to get around on balls inside all year.

    When the Mets show up to play Friday night in Atlanta, it will be their second Star Wars theme night in a week. Must have something to do with the “Evil Empire” thingee…


  144. 146 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2011 at 8:20 am

    V, you didn’t holler loud enough! 😉

    Missed it, but saw the highlights….Gil, I wonder if you are right, he really looks like a different hitter, doesn’t he????

    and I am sure everyone was wanting to look at the 2012 schedule, here it tis


  145. 148 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Interesting banter on a Braves LHP prospect I have never heard of, Ronan Pacheco:



  146. 149 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 9:34 am

    Omar Infante appears to want to “test the market” in FA. I for one will not be surprised if he ends up back in ATL. Obviously, the Braves would like it because they explored a trade for him at the deadline. And Omar would likely be interested as he enjoyed his best seasons here. (Not to mention that he’ll follow the $$$.) Where would he fit, given Prado’s presence?

    I’m not sold on Prado returning. You say, “Wait… he was an All Star just 1 year ago!” I say, “So was Omar.”

    His best position – and All Star position – is at 2B, a spot where he will not play here. He is not a LF. And he is not a backup SS, something the Braves lacked until late this season when they acquired Jack Wilson. Regardless of who starts at SS next season, we’ll still need a backup. Omar makes sense. If Prado can break out of his slump before the season ends, especially if he can perform in the playoffs on the national stage, he’ll have real trade value… as a 2B.

    The way I see it, LF is the one position that the Braves will look to upgrade this offseason. The FA route is unlikely due to a couple of reasons: the market is thin, and it always, ALWAYS costs too much. It will have to come through trade. So… who needs a 2B that has a surplus in the OF? Hmmm?


  147. 150 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 9:38 am

    Maybe FLA will want him (since Omar will leave a void) for disgruntled LF Logan Morrison. 😆

    OK, not very realistic, but then again, was Omar and Dunn for Uggla? Well?


  148. 151 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    You know, after umpteen games in which DLowe’s pitches are all up in the zone, you’d think he or someone would do something about it… 🙄


  149. 152 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    And he’s getting drilled…


  150. 153 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    marlimaniac.com: The only opening that could be left is in the corner outfield spots, where Logan Morrison‘s future with the team remains in doubt because of his “off-field antics,”




  151. 154 Voice of Raisins September 16, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    What time is kickoff tomorrow?


  152. 155 berigan2electricboogaloo September 16, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    V, that’s interesting about Logan….I’ve been on the fence about his situation in Florida. We know the ownership just stinks there…but a change of scenery could only help. I assume Freddi knows him to a degree…Lets see, Infante goes to the braves or some other team, Marlins need a 2nd baseman…. 😉

    And guys, DLowe is now officially untradeable…he is KK only older….


  153. 156 Gil in Mechanicsville September 17, 2011 at 7:12 am

    WOW… that was brutal…. I hate it when a team comes in following a long losing streak, it never seems to fail that they will get healthy against Atlanta pitching.

    I have never seen DLowe look so ineffective, time to right the ship guys…

    Like Satchel Paige famously said, “Don’t look back, something might be gaining on you”…


  154. 157 Voice of Raisins September 17, 2011 at 6:19 pm



  155. 158 Gil in Mechanicsville September 17, 2011 at 10:19 pm

    Hudson is the anti-Lowe


  156. 159 berigan2electricboogaloo September 18, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    Yep…I think he had a huge game like that for us last September too…He’s money for sure, what he lacks in velocity, he makes up in brains and desire.
    Now today’s game…ugggh…at least what little of it I could follow. Sad when you go into a restaurant in Atlanta and no braves game is on, but a Football game between the Bears and the Saints is…
    I thought the plan was not to bring in Venters and Kimbrel in games the braves were tied or behind in??? Seems panicky to go against what you said a few days ago, and then to lose with the best guys out there…Good thing the Cards are playing the phils right now…the bad thing is the Braves will finish up with the Phils…yuck…and how many runners were left on base??? Prado and Bourn had 6 AB’s in a 9 inning game?? With the braves only scoring 5??? YUCK!!!


  157. 160 Voice of Raisins September 19, 2011 at 7:09 am

    Stumbling toward October… tripping even. I wonder if they’ll still be upright in a week?


  158. 161 Voice of Raisins September 19, 2011 at 7:13 am

    Still… 3 1/ 2 up with just 9 games to go will be tough to erode. Too bad we won’t be able to set up the rotation the way we want to, though.


  159. 162 Gil in Mechanicsville September 19, 2011 at 8:11 am

    Is it just me or does everybody else notice that Jonny Venters has hit the wall? Even his outs are hard hit balls at somebody… The kid looks like the Venters I saw in AAA a few years ago. He is not going to complain but I think we need to pray that Medlin can come back in time to save the team.


  160. 163 berigan2electricboogaloo September 19, 2011 at 11:39 am

    Venters was overworked last year (79 games) and is on pace for 86 this year! I know they are trying to rest him a bit now, but in a way, it’s too late…

    From the AJC
    with so many appearances, if he’s tired:

    “No. I feel fine. It’s September; it’s time to dig down deep and reach for something extra. Unfortunately today I couldn’t do that and cost my team the game. There’s tomorrow, we’ll go out and try to win a ballgame.”

    If he really felt fine, why would he need to dig down deep and reach for something extra? I know he has to say something like that, still…

    Some managers just know how to handle a bullpen better than others…helps that the Yankees are in first place, but still, they have been without Joba Chamberlain and Rafael Soriano most of the year. There 8th inning guy, David Robertson has pitched in 66 games, Mariano Rivera has pitched in only 60 games. Get this, Scott Proctor is now pitching for the Yankees!

    Now, back to the braves…O’Flaherty 74 games so far (hey, wasn’t he on the DL even?) Kimbrel 76 games so far…I know the often sucky offense makes it harder on Freddi, but….look at one pitcher, Mike Minor. He’s 23, not 21. Need to not overdo it, sure but did ya know he hasn’t thrown 100 pitches in any game this year???
    It’s a problem Beachy has to work on(throwing too many pitches per inning) but you can still see games it seems strange he was pulled from after 6 innings.
    It would be different if we had a Sabbathia type, that went 9 innings once or twice a month, but we don’t, so you can’t have everyone just pitch 5-6 innings a start, save Hudson. Those arms are going to be worthless in the playoffs, if they are used in losses down the stretch….


  161. 164 Gil in Mechanicsville September 19, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    So, I guess it’s not just me…

    I saw this coming about a month ago, looked as if Venters was trying to compensate for fatigue by throwing harder (digging down deep) . Sigh, the nature of the game and why you play all 162 or so games.

    Like I said, getting Medlin (providing he could actually pitch) would be a real boost.

    For right now, I think you plug in Moylan in the 7th and drop O’Flaerty down to the 8th.


  162. 165 berigan2electricboogaloo September 19, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    the good news is Mike Stanton will no doubt sign with the Red Sox or Yankees in five more years….


  163. 166 Voice of Raisins September 19, 2011 at 9:57 pm



  164. 167 berigan2electricboogaloo September 19, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    Wow…just wow….it felt like a playoff game…so many twists and turns, Omar helping the Braves with a rare error, then crushing them with a 2 run homer…off of the formally unhittable Kimbrel.
    a homer that should not have happened, but a chopper to Chipper lost in the lousy lights at Joe Robbie…the baseball Gods are not behind the Braves right now…


  165. 168 Gil in Mechanicsville September 19, 2011 at 11:29 pm

    Want to get away for a while?


  166. 169 Voice of Raisins September 19, 2011 at 11:33 pm

    Yep… the 27th out was induced, but rendered useless by playing baseball in a football stadium.

    2 1/2 games.



  167. 170 Voice of Raisins September 20, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    2 night’s lineup:
    1. Bourn, CF
    2. Prado, LF
    3. Jones, 3B
    4. Uggla, 2B
    5. McCann, C
    6. Freeman, 1B
    7. Gonzalez, SS
    8. Heyward, RF
    9. Delgado, RHP

    I don’t like it… I’ll tell you why:

    1. Bourn, CF OK. 1 of only 2 consistent bats. He’s doing his job.
    2. Prado, LF Why? What has he done since… last season?
    3. Jones, 3B The dude’s OBP is outstanding. Bat him 2nd behind your only other consistent bat.
    4. Uggla, 2B Yes. Definitely yes.
    5. McCann, C Dude’s hitting .181 since he’s come off the DL.
    6. Freeman, 1B Definitely hitting better than Mac right now.
    7. Gonzalez, SS Current hot bat. Ride it until it cools off.
    8. Heyward, RF Braves were 18-10 with Constanza starting and running the bases with Bourn.
    9. Delgado, RHP

    My lineup:
    1. Bourn, CF
    2. Jones, 3B
    3. Heyward, RF He has been hitting the ball much better lately. Better than Prado.
    4. Uggla, 2B
    5. Freeman, 1B
    6. Gonzalez, SS
    7. McCann, C
    8. Constanza, LF Prado needs to sit.
    9. Delgado, RHP

    I feel better.


  168. 171 berigan2electricboogaloo September 20, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    V, I’d go with what you suggest….Freddi has more than a little of Bobby in him….they both panic at any sign of a starter faltering, but will ride .181 hitters hoping they will eventually get hot…amazed that Freddi even benched JHey, don’t know that Bobby would have…but the sign of insanity is what? Doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results…


  169. 172 berigan2electricboogaloo September 20, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Gil, to your idea….


  170. 173 Gil in Mechanicsville September 20, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    I refuse to give up but the Braves need to get a grip, that said, they are not the first team to falter at the end. Actually, they are not alone either, the Rays are pushing the Red Sox too.


  171. 174 Gil in Mechanicsville September 20, 2011 at 11:25 pm



  172. 175 berigan2electricboogaloo September 20, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    More like it, eh? 🙂


  173. 176 Voice of Raisins September 21, 2011 at 7:05 am

    Yes… yes it was. Maybe the most important win of the season. And against Anibal Sanchez, no slouch of a pitcher.

    They said it over and over on the radio broadcast, but it was a “character” win for sure.

    Hat’s off to Randall Delgado. That’s an awful lot of pressure for a guy with just 5 major league starts under his belt. I believe that’s his greatest asset. He may not have the magic arm that other top prospects possess, but he has something that can’t be taught. The dude has Glavine-esque ice water in his veins. He won more than just his first MLB game last night; he won me as a fan.


  174. 177 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Still, way too many opportunities wasted on the base paths last night. It has almost become a signature of this Braves team to leave guys on base in scoring opportunities with less than two outs. Getting on base does not appear to be the problem, situational hitting sure seems to be.


  175. 178 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2011 at 10:22 am

    Joe Simpson kept commenting that Delgado should use his breaking stuff more often but he just threw what McCann called for. Lots of the old Number One… I think Ross would have mixed it up a bit more. Still, you can’t argue with success.

    Now, lets hope “Bad” Javier shows up tonight.


  176. 179 Voice of Raisins September 21, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Saw this morning that the Braves have not faced Javier Vazquez since 2005. That kinda surprised me. Seems like he always had our number. But that was a while ago, now wasn’t it?


  177. 181 berigan2electricboogaloo September 21, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Javy had a 5.23 pre all star, 2.35 post all star…figure that one out! And, they keep saying he is going to retire at the end of the season, which makes no sense….he’s 35!


  178. 182 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    He was going to retire as long as he was pitching poorly, after finding himself, he likely has had a change of heart.


  179. 183 berigan2electricboogaloo September 21, 2011 at 7:10 pm

    Gil, it’s weird, two stories lately on MLBTR with fellow players saying he will retire…


  180. 184 Voice of Raisins September 21, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Linebrink’s coming in? Well, the 3 run deficit will surely expand quicker than an Obama tax increase…


  181. 185 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2011 at 11:51 pm

    Oh well, looks like the Braves are about to become the latest footnote on late season collapses.



  182. 186 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 6:58 am



  183. 187 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 7:21 am

    So, as the Braves take the day off today, the Cards get one more with the horrible Mets. They’ll start tomorrow just 1 game off the Wild Card.

    Then, the Braves open a 3 game series in Washington, which is alot like Sarah Palin having a fundraiser in San Francisco. Can anyone say Alaskan salmon swimming upstream? Meanwhile, the Cards host the Cubs in St. Louis. I cringe.

    But the worst part is this…

    The Braves finish with 3 against the MLB best Phillies – a team that already has 98 wins with a week to go. The Cards wrap it up with the MLB worst Astros – a team that already has 102 losses with a week to go.

    I’m not running out to buy playoff tickets.


  184. 188 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 9:14 am

    OK… I know I’m supposed to be the positive, upbeat kinda guy here, so I have found a positive little tidbit to bring to the table.

    This from the Braves beat writer: “Medlen… threw 19 warmup pitches and 12 pitches in one inning of an Instructional League game. He could pitch at least once more in Florida before possibly being activated for next week’s finale series against Philadelphia.”

    I’l take what I can get today. 😐


  185. 189 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2011 at 9:29 am

    For right now, I’ll take Davis Ross playing a few games in place of McCann. He has been awful since the oblique strain. As for the rest of the crew, well, you know….


  186. 190 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2011 at 9:48 am

    It’s been a nice ride this season but looks like the Braves are fighting on two fronts, the Cardinals who are hot as a two dollar pistol and themselves.

    That said, things look pretty good for next season. Just an arm or two for the pen and a left fielder should do the trick.

    Look for Prado and a pitcher to be traded.

    Oh, and Heyward getting back on track… Still say the Braves should break out the shock collar….


  187. 191 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 10:06 am

    Can anyone honestly say that they ever imagined we would all come to a complete stop for a Mets-Cards game in late September?

    Seriously, one of the most important games of the season (again) is not even one where the Braves take the field. I don’t want to head into a series in Washington with just a 1 game lead. I can’t see us sweeping this series, and I really don’t want to go into the last 3 with Phillie as close as 1 game off with the cards playing the Astros. I always thought a playoff race was supposed to be fun. This is far from fun. Maybe this is what LA felt like back in ’91 when they saw their once formidable lead dwindle in the last couple of weeks.

    No fun! 😥


  188. 192 berigan2electricboogaloo September 22, 2011 at 11:41 am

    No fun indeed! This must be what it felt like for Mets fans back to back years(2008, 09?)
    Not anything we don’t all know, but it was long, and posted on the jazz forum to the question if the Cards had any chance to overtake the braves…..
    I’d say there is about a 90% chance the Cards or even the Giants (pretty long shot now with so few games left) overtake the braves. 😦
    Kind of hard to to lose Jair Jurrjens (1.87 ERA at the all star break) and Tommy Hanson (2.44 ERA at the break) and still be competitive. We had 4 rookies in a row start a week ago.
    We don’t have the Red Sox’s or Yankees offense, to just pound the opponents on the days the starters don’t have it. Something is clearly wrong with Brian McCann. at the break, he was hitting .310, and few would have doubted he was the best offensive Catcher in the game (at that time) then he hurt his oblique, and is hitting .197 since the break, and some of that was before getting hurt!
    Martin Prado is hitting .265 this year, and has only driven in 56 RBI’s which would be easier to hide at 2nd base, than in left. He hit .307 or higher, the previous 3 seasons. So many players not having career years, which usually you need of course, to get in the playoffs… Eric Hinske, 11 HR 51 RBi’s in less than 300 AB’s last year, 10HR 28 RBI this season. (.261 before break, .181 after) Dan Uggla came on strong in the 2nd have, and leads the club in RBI’s…78. Not very impressive when you consider he has 35 HR’s. Possible rookie of the year, Freddie Freeman (20 HRs .286, .351 OBP) has 74. And there are many scoring opportunities every day…sorta interesting fact. Chipper Jones is hitting only .240 with no one one (but 13 HR’s) but .335 with runners on (but only 4 HR’s)
    I mentioned before I believe how very overworked the bullpen is.
    Eric O’Flaherty, who was injured awhile ago still has been in 75 Games
    Jonny Venters 82 games
    Craig Kimbrel 77 games
    Mo Rivera has never appeared in more than 74 regular season games in any season!
    in the immortal words of Jim Mora, Playoffs???

    Oh, how could I forget, the next Hank Aaron, Jason Heyward, the JHey kid!
    14 HR’s 42 RBI’s and robust .227 BA in 383 AB’s. But hey, he is hitting . 263 in September! <_<
    He just turned 22, so he's clearly not done, but he is not the impressive kid who had 10 HR's and 38 RBI's at the end of May, 2010.
    He has mastered grounding weakly to 2nd base.
    Meanwhile, the Marlins have Mike Stanton, who may be THE power hitter of the next decade. Did anyone see the 2 homers he hit the other night? One down the left field line at Joe Robbie was in the 3rd deck, ABOVE the exit, then he hit one supposedly even further to left center. Amazing…


  189. 193 berigan2electricboogaloo September 22, 2011 at 11:46 am

    I wrote that, a fact I somehow didn’t mention in the post above…. 😕


  190. 194 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    I think a really telling stat you mentioned was Heyward and his 42 RBI. How can any team expect to contend with just 42 RBI from their starting RF?

    Answer: You can’t. I get that we lost a couple of pitchers, but those youngsters kept us in games. Our offense let us down. It’s that simple.

    Geez… 42 RBI. That’s just… ugh… Do you realize that our RF and LF combined may still not crack the century mark?

    None of this makes me feel any better… 😦


  191. 195 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    OK… as dismal as I recall the Braves being against the Nats, we’re actually 8-7 against them this season. We have Huddy going tonight against Strasburg, and Beachy tomorrow against Wang. I like both of those matchups. It’s the Sunday game that worries me. Minor against TBA. I can’t find anything on this TBA kid. Nuthin’. But any kid that is that well known by just his initials, like MJ or ARod… well, that can’t be good.


  192. 196 Carolina Lady September 22, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    The Braves are juuuust good enough to drive you crazy!


  193. 197 berigan2electricboogaloo September 22, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    V, amazing that LF and RF doesn’t = 100! Yankees have 3 players with more than 100 RBI’s, 2 with 116 + !


  194. 198 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Yep. the RBI stat says a lot about how poor the Braves as a whole have performed with runners on base or in scoring position. So many times the Braves have failed to score when afforded men on base and less then two outs and striking out, popping up or hitting into a double play.

    And yes, the lack of production from the outfield has been very telling.

    I still think Prado is a super talented guy, one of the best utility guys in the league, just not the guy you want to rely upon for your offense.


  195. 199 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    Like the old saying in racing, “If you want to finish first, then first you must finish….”


  196. 200 Voice of Raisins September 22, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Whew! 😯


  197. 201 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 8:25 am

    Ya know…

    On Tuesday morning, we talked about character. We had come off a night before where Omar Infante dealt us a crushing blow. The team was stunned. They had to come back on Wednesday and show whether they had either A) given up, or B) steeled their resolve to finish the drill.

    I believe that the Mets’ 6-run 9th inning last night may have been an even more crushing blow to St. Louis. I’m telling you, when we finish this season going forward into the Wild Card series – yes I just said when, not if – we’re going to point to that game, a stinkin’, Mets victory, as the point where St. Louis lost it.

    Their momentum is now stalled. Their ideals are now questioned. The ball is now back in the Braves’ court.

    Just take care of business, baby… take care of business. If we can go 3-3 over the final 6, I believe we take it. 2-3 in Washington, and not get swept at home in the finale, and I believe we take it.

    Tonight: Huddy vs. Stephen Strasburg. I will NEVER bet against Tim Hudson.
    Tomorrow: Beachy vs. Chien-Ming Wang. Ours. Period.
    Sunday: Minor vs. they haven’t decided who they want to look at. I like those priorities for them. This year is lost again; worry about next year.

    Then, we hopefully get Tommy Hanson for a test start on Friday. This begs the question for game 161. If Hanson does get the Friday start, does he start in place of Delgado, or does he just push Delgado back a day? Why does this matter?

    I’ll tell ya. If it pushes Delgado back to Saturday, guess who’s lined up for game 162. DLowe would be lined up for the season finale.

    Oh Lord, I pray that the Wild Card does not come down to a start by DLowe. I’d have to find an alternative. Heck, I’d start Teheran, the rookie, before I start DLowe. $15MM be hanged. I don’t care. No way I start Derek Lowe in that spot. No way.

    So, to bring it back around 180 degrees, was yesterday the crushing blow for St. Louis? Will the Cards now collapse like an Obama economy? Lord I hope so before next Sunday. Please.


  198. 202 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 8:30 am

    The Phillies series is of course Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Somehow I lost 4 days. 😐

    Which skews my whole timeline. Hanson could only come back for a Wednesday start at the earliest.

    So, never mind…


  199. 203 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 8:31 am



  200. 204 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2011 at 9:16 am

    Who would have thunk it? The Mets coming back with 6 runs against ‘Scrabble’..

    The Braves still have a shot, Strasburg will not be pitching more than about 5 innings. The secret to the Braves success against him will be not swinging at the first pitch.

    As for the game tonight, it’s real iffy that they will even be able to play. Big time rain expected. Could skew everything.


  201. 205 berigan2electricboogaloo September 23, 2011 at 11:14 am

    V, I do believe you are right about the Cards loss yesterday, yea Mets! 😛

    Changes everything…I just would hate to watch the braves get in by only losing 2 of 3…you just feel if you can’t win against the Marlins or Nats, how can you beat any playoff team?
    Anyway….Gil, YES!!!! Several rainouts, pushing the playoffs back several days, screw up everything! 😈 Oh, you mean MLB would rather have teams play triple headers than move a playoff date…nevermind…


  202. 206 berigan2electricboogaloo September 23, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Oh, and CL, hello again stranger! 🙂
    Now, a question for the ladies…well, Lady, since FBG seems to be AWOL! 😦
    Do Gil, V and I stink??? If we do, please let us know! We are willing to change brands of deodorant, honest! We seem to be just the three amigos for the last several months…with all of our issues with the braves, its not like they are battling to stay out of last place…


  203. 207 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    So many blogs Ber, so little time. Appears as if most want their own gig…

    Now an observation from Josie, with whom I shared a great lunch with today,… She feels, and I concur, that Freddie should have rested MCCann more when they had the chance. The guy is just flat worn out. Maybe they can let him play left field or something to keep his bat in the line-up but in a less stressful area. Look at the numbers the last three years and you will find similar fades by BMac.

    Secondly, Heyward has been a huge disappointment this season. For whatever reason, he has failed to make the adjustments necessary to be a major league player.

    Thirdly, Freddie has worn out the bullpen. End of discussion….


  204. 208 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    And between ‘Farmville’ Bakeryville and every other ville on facebook, it’s a wonder anyone shows up at game time….


  205. 209 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    Sigh, stuck with the Nat’s play by play tonight…


  206. 210 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    Now that was different, Bourne scores from second after a blown rundown play by the Nats.


  207. 211 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    Good grind-it-out win tonight. There’s some fight left in this dog after all.


  208. 212 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 11:27 pm

    … and the Cards lose. I love it when a plan comes together.


  209. 213 Voice of Raisins September 23, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    So Moylan has a torn rotator cuff?!? 😯

    Dadgummit! Can we catch a break?


  210. 214 Gil in Mechanicsville September 24, 2011 at 8:27 am

    I feel bad for the Aussie, that is a lot of rehab to go through and torn labrums are the worse part, the rotator cuff is doable but torn labrums are the bane of a pitcher’s career. Ask Smoltz, or McBride or Chuck James or Tom Glavin or any other pitcher who has tried to come back from it.

    I’m not sure what’s going on with Hanson but it does not bode well for him either. I guess that funky delivery of his is catching up with him.


  211. 215 Voice of Raisins September 24, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    The thing with Hanson’s “funky” delivery is that it is supposed to put alot of stress on his elbow. I never saw the shoulder thing coming…


  212. 216 Voice of Raisins September 24, 2011 at 4:17 pm

    Oh… I missed a day game today. Apparently, it’s a good thing I did.


  213. 217 Carolina Lady September 25, 2011 at 1:02 am

    Hey, Ber! I stop in most days but I’m not “up” on enough news to warrant posting anything. And you three are the most erudite, charming, dapper, and good-looking guys in Stuffville! I’m deep in 3 different projects plus some facebook time to check up on the Restaurant, Farm Town and my buddies from around the world. Trying to get the Freedom Warriors CHRISTMAS Care Package Campaign ramped up. We have to mail by Dec 1 so the packages arrive in time. 4 – 6 weeks transit time to Iraq and Afghanistan. Trying by best to finish the current research project by Christmas.


  214. 218 Gil in Mechanicsville September 25, 2011 at 10:44 am

    I don’t know why I really thought the Cubbies could pull off a 1-0 win against the Cards yesterday, I watch the carnage unfold after two outs in the bottom of the ninth. It was realllllyyy ugly.

    As for the Braves, I have said all along the Nats could put a crooked numbers on the board PDQ if you weren’t careful.

    To be honest, if the Braves stand a chance, they need to earn their way into the play-offs. Win today and win 2 of 3 against the Phillies… If the Braves can’t beat the Gnats, I can’t see them beating either the DBacks or the Brewers…


  215. 219 Gil in Mechanicsville September 25, 2011 at 10:48 am

    By the way, game time is 1:35 today. I gave serious consideration to going to the game but my back has decided otherwise. Guess I will just have to tough it out at home from the couch…

    Oh well, at least the beer is cheaper here and colder too…


  216. 220 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    I’m going to go out on a limb here…if you can’t score with the bases loaded, and nobody out, and you can’t score 2rd and 3rd and one out, against a sub .500 team….like Gil(I just typed Chipper!) said, you can’t expect to beat the Brewers or Diamondbacks…nor would they even deserve to.

    I’d love to be a fly on the wall when hitting philosophy is talked about in the Braves dugout, in the clubhouse…and compared to what the Yankees say to their hitters(or amongst themselves) or Red Sox hitters…I know they all “know” to hit to the other field, to the deepest infielder, to hit a fly ball deep enough to score…but, for how many years has it been, does it seem like the Braves are purely incapable of doing this?
    Is it as simple as teams like the Yanks and Sox being more patient, not swinging at letter high pitches they can’t do anything with? Hitters tired? Why aren’t the Yankee hitters tired right now?


  217. 221 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    nor would they even deserve to….what I meant to say deserve to be in the playoffs….
    WOW. Henry Rodriguez at 101 on the outside corner=unhittable. David Ross trying to bunt with 2 strikes says it all.


  218. 222 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    CL!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂
    First, you are doing great work on behalf of our fighting men and women, congrats!
    Any clearly work has to come before anything else…
    I was going to jokingly say Gil, V, and voted a new rule, you and FBG had to post at least once a week! :mrgreen:
    So, a “go braves” once in awhile would let us know you gals haven’t turned your back on the poor braves, or on us….


  219. 223 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    still say we are rank! 😛


  220. 224 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    And clearly work comes first, he meant to say…


  221. 225 berigan2electricboogaloo September 25, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    Kris Medlen just had a 1-2-3 inning, Yay Kris! 🙂


  222. 226 Voice of Raisins September 25, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    Meds looked really good. That’s all I have to say about today.


  223. 227 Gil in Mechanicsville September 26, 2011 at 8:19 am

    Sure glad I saved $150 and stayed at home yesterday, watching that train wreck on TV was bad enough. Going out on a limb here and saying the Braves won’t make it…

    So when did the collapse begin? I’m saying when McCann pulled the oblique…

    Situational hitting and the Braves, two words never uttered in the same sentence in a positive way.


  224. 228 berigan2electricboogaloo September 26, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Gil, I heard Tim K. on baseball tonight last night…he said he talked to a scout who said he has seen the braves 30 times this year, and said if they don’t hit homers, they don’t win. Not good at situational hitting, or going deep into counts. Tim asked some braves player (bet it was Chipper) who said yeah, basically that’s true.

    Also heard since late August (I think) the braves are hitting under .200 with runners in scoring position….sigh….


  225. 229 Voice of Raisins September 26, 2011 at 11:27 am

    Here are 9 really good reasons why the Braves are not a playoff team heading down the stretch:

    Leadoff: Michael Bourn has seemed like a great pickup for us, but the reality is that his OBP with ATL is only .315. You do realize that Schafer was getting on base at a .310 clip at the time he was traded, right? And he’s bumped that slightly to .316 with Houston. Ouch. Perspective hurts sometimes.

    2nd: And when we did get Bourn on base, Martin swatted at a sad .219 in August, and .240 thus far in September. If folks are going to pile on Heyward, they need to pile on Martin, too. Why has Fredi continued to bat this pretender 2nd?!?!?!

    3rd: Thank God for Larry Wayne “Chipper” Jones. Period. Even at about 80-85%, he’s still the best player on the team day in and day out.

    4th: Dan Uggla hit a fat .340 in August. He has hit a scrawny .236 thus far in September.

    5th: Mac came off the DL to play 13 games in August. He hit .146 for August. He followed August with a robust .192 thus far in September. Wither he came back too early, or he has some other physical ailment we aren’t hearing about, or his vision is weirding out again. Regardless, he shouldn’t be out there 6 out of 7 games under these conditions. Fredi, what say you?

    6th: Freddie was one of the hottest hitters in the NL for June and July, pushing his average over .300 late in July. Then, he hit .277 in August, followed by a not-so-hot .250 thus far in September.

    7th: Should Gonzo be asked to hit alot when he saves so many runs at SS? I’ll take this season from him. No complaints. Under that reasoning, though, he should be batting 8th, not 7th or higher. Uh, Fredi?

    8th: Heyward. Well, at least he’s been consistent. Consistently BAD yes… but consistent. Folks, we’ve looked at .262 with 4 RBI in September and called it an improvement. Man…

    Bench: We’ve had very little late inning heroics from Conrad and Hinske this season. Watching Conrad look at strike 3 too many times this season has not been any fun. He’s a pinch-“hitter”. Not a pinch-“draw a walker”. Can’t hit the ball and drive in runs with your bat on your shoulder.

    Fredi bears alot of responsibility. He has too often managed the back of the baseball card and not the player.

    And I will cut all of the pitching staff a break. We would not even be watching the standings if not for their keeping us in most games.

    So there you have it – my office chair perspective on the state of the Braves on September 26, 2011. I hope they prove me wrong in these last 3 games.


  226. 230 Voice of Raisins September 26, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Wow… the Braves are really trying to fill The Ted for these 3 very important games. Tickets can be bought on StubHub for $1!

    I can’t do it tonight, but maybe tomorrow. Gotta check into this one…


  227. 231 Gil in Mechanicsville September 26, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I can’t stand to watch any longer, I am going to help my youngest step-son move the refrigerator into his new digs tonight. I’ll read about it later…

    By the way, talked baseball with my older brother today and he agrees on the situational hitting aspect with the Braves.


  228. 232 Voice of Raisins September 26, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    Dadgum… I just come in and go straight to the TV, and we’re down 2 with 6 outs to go. As if on cue, Eric Hinske watches strike 3 go by. 5 outs now.

    I’m done, too. I’ll check back later. I can’t take it.


  229. 233 Voice of Raisins September 26, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    They suck. I couldn’t help but watch. I need mental help..


  230. 234 Voice of Raisins September 26, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    Whew! Dodged a bullet in Houston. Still 1 game up…


  231. 235 Gil in Mechanicsville September 27, 2011 at 6:54 am

    Guys, (and gal), I came home just in time to see Chipper hit into an inning ending DP in the eight and watched the ninth. It’s like a train wreck, to horrible to watch, too horrible not to.

    Remind me to send Houston a bottle of Champagne…


  232. 236 berigan2electricboogaloo September 27, 2011 at 9:32 am

    V, when you look at those stats you brought up, it looks more like the work of a last place team, than a first, doesn’t it??? Well, first in the wildcard….
    I like Bourn’s energy, and you can tell that it’s eating him, and Prado up not to produce like they have in the past…and McCann too of course. At least JHey doesn’t have the ____ eating grin we used to see from Andruw, but still doesn’t look like it’s bothering him in the same way. Perhaps he is too stunned to believe it, he’s never failed at baseball before…
    Freddi has WAY too much Bobby in him…perhaps he has gone to Bobby for advice…Stay the course son, don’t rock the boat! 😕

    As for the cheap tickets…man, I have been limping around in a car with a bad brake booster, and radiator for about a year, and finally am getting both fixed this week,(brakes today, radiator, well, hopefully later this week) so don’t have the gas money…drat….


  233. 237 berigan2electricboogaloo September 27, 2011 at 9:40 am

    Amazing that the Astros beat the Cards, when I saw Lance Berkman had doubled in two runners(who had just moved up on a double steal) and hearing the Astros had the highest ERA in either the NL or all of baseball….really, we should be tied in the WC right now…I think Ron Gant is right, Oswalt is our best bet to win one against the Phils…


  234. 238 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 10:37 am

    So tonight, when the Braves are in as close to a must win situation as they could possibly be, they are starting Derek Lowe against Roy Oswalt.

    Ugh… 🙄

    Not very rosy on the injured pitcher front, either. See below:



  235. 239 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 10:58 am

    Want to feel good? The Cards will start Jake Westbrook tonight, and Chris Carpenter tomorrow.

    The Braves will start Derek Lowe tonight. At least we have Huddy scheduled for tomorrow.

    Oh, 1 good bit of news… Furcal is out of this series with another injury. Then again, he’s had 2 errors directly lead to 2 Cards’ losses in the last couple of weeks. Maybe we want him in after all…


  236. 240 berigan2electricboogaloo September 27, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    Furcal also hit a homer to win a game…win a game with his bat, lose two with his glove, same ol’ Furcal. Still dislike him very much for his bowing out of a handshake deal with the Braves…glad we haven’t been wasting money on him all these years….


  237. 241 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    And Lowe was quite… Lowe-ish. Thanks, Derek, for the 4 run hole.


  238. 242 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    I love the Astros.


  239. 243 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 8:57 pm

    Arodys should have started this game…


  240. 244 Voice of Raisins September 27, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    … and as soon as I say that, he gives up a monster shot to Jimmy Rollins. 😐


  241. 245 berigan2electricboogaloo September 27, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    V, still love the ‘stros??? 😕


  242. 246 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 5:56 am

    At least they gave a little fight. Not even that from the Braves…


  243. 247 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 7:26 am

    Fredi needs to take a little heat for starting DLowe yesterday. Everyone can plainly see that DLowe is struggling mightily. DLowe himself says he’s been fight his mechanics badly for weeks. His own lips say that it can’t be corrected until the offseason. Why was he starting the most critical game thus far in the season? Seriously, why? I know Huddy could not go on 4 day’s rest, and God knows we need him today, but what about Teheran? Heck… I would have started Arodys over DLowe.

    It’s easy to say now having seen the results, but we all said it beforehand! We knew that he’d give up 3 or 4 runs in the first 3 or 4 innings. We knew that we’d be in an early hole. And we all have witnessed how badly the offense has struggled to get hits, much less score runs. How can you allow your anemic offense to be put in such an early hole? Maybe he was hoping for a last gasp miracle from DLowe. Maybe he was looking for some storybook ending. I wasn’t. I’m more of a realist. And I am completely disgusted over the complete loss of a 10 1/2 game Wild Card lead.

    So here we are… game 162. Win or go home. So the ‘stros are starting Brett Myers today. Myers has been strong in September, going 4-0 with a 1.24 ERA in his last 5 starts. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the Cards are starting Chris Carpenter. While Carpenter’s September has not been quite as impressive as Myers’ has, I’d rather have Carpenter for one important game. What really ticks me off is that we are now dependent on what happens in someone else’s game. That really sucks…

    As for the Braves in game 162, we know that we are throwing our ace. We know that Philly is tossing Joe Blanton and a host of others. This is just a tune up for their guys. That said, knowing Charlie Manuel, he’ll play it like any other game because doing anything else would not be right in light of the playoff implications. I respect him for that. And if we can’t win one stinkin’ game in this series, we don’t deserve to be there anyway.

    There is a part of me that wants the torture to end tonight. But my nature won’t let me actually pull against the Braves. But to be honest, I’m not watching. I saw all I need to see last night. I have other plans for tonight, like feeling good about something. I’m planning on watching Rocket City Rednecks on the National Geographic channel. (Google it.) I know that I can come away from that with something of value. Not so at The Ted.

    I’ll just read about it later. Maybe y’all can fill me in in the morning…


  244. 248 Gil in Mechanicsville September 28, 2011 at 7:41 am

    And for the good news??? At least the Red Soxs have tanked too. Keeps the Braves from being “THE STORY” … No mention of the Braves spic slide but the BoSox are front page..

    I can’t say I’m happy about it but I did see this coming, Too many holes in the line up. Too many missed opportunities to drive the stake thru the heart of the rest of the league. You cannot play 162 games on emotion but you can play the final 30 games that way.

    Thing is, everybody else in the division is going to get better next year, where does that put the Braves?


  245. 249 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    OK… so I am keeping up a little bit with what’s going on. Gonzo’s calf is bad enough that the Braves called up Pasternicky to back up Jack Wilson. Not a good sign…

    I wasn’t aware that Pasternicky was even on the 40 man roster. I guess he is. If not, I have not heard of any corresponding move. But that could easily be accomplished by placing Moylan on the 60-day DL.


  246. 250 berigan2electricboogaloo September 28, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    Where to start? V, this is 2nd hand info, but from a minor league ump who plays trivia with us, I said something about Teheran not looking all that impressive to me and he said weeks ago he was toast, really tired…all the young stud pitchers are very young, and are very Pedro Martinez in build…I really hope they fill out some, otherwise we will have 3-4 guys that will never pitch 180 innings a season .
    But, the point is the “organization” may be saying you can’t start these guys. So Freddi takes the heat.
    I like Freddi, think he’s a good manager…I didn’t question moves nearly as much this year as I did the last few years with Bobby…but, he’s not very creative. The most creative time was when Bourn and Constanza batting 1-2 and the pitcher hitting 8th. Then when Constanza got cold, it was back to JHey grounding weakly to 2nd. Wonder if Wren would tell him to play JHey more? I know we wanted some pop, and like Gil said, if we were to get anywhere, JHey would have to start hitting…but, he didn’t. And the braves got nowhere fast….
    I would really hate to see Freddi lose his job, and I don’t think the organization would do that to him, but if the team starts slowly next year….
    V, the show sounds interesting, thanks!
    Gil, a very good question! We are almost the AL East as it is. How’s this for a scenario? Nats sign LEFT handed starter(just what the braves love) CJ Wilson, as they are already rumored to be after? John Lannan, Chien-Ming Wang, Strasburg , Jordan Zimmermann , Ross Detwiler . Oh, yeah Livan Hernandez too…..thats a very good starting rotation.
    What if the Mutts signed Prince Fielder? Not very likely, I know….don’t know how much moola is coming off their books, if any….They may be the last place team, at around .500 next year. Marlins may sign Prince, that’s the rumor, they will try to get a big name. Aramis Ramirez sounds interested now that Ozzie Guillen is the Marlins Manager…it’s not going to get easier, is it?


  247. 251 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    Wow… this from MLBTR:

    Royals lefty Bruce Chen is among Boston’s trade targets as they consider acquiring a starter for a potential Thursday play-in game, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Chen is scheduled to start tonight in Minnesota as he seeks to tie his career-high of 13 wins.

    Chen projects as a Type B free agent, and an arbitration offer from Kansas City is realistic. Red Sox GM Theo Epstein would have to surrender something significant to best the value of that potential draft pick, and he’d probably have to complete the trade before even knowing whether he’d need Chen for tomorrow. At most, the Red Sox would be able to use Chen for that one game, as he would not be eligible for the postseason roster. As Rosenthal notes, the lefty has already cleared waivers. The 34-year-old Chen has a 3.98 ERA, 5.7 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, 1.1 HR/9, and 35.5% groundball rate on the season.

    In theory, Epstein could also look at fully rested starters such as Chien-Ming Wang, Rodrigo Lopez, and Aaron Harang, though Harang also may be a Type B. If the Red Sox do not acquire a starter, they might have to use John Lackey or Tim Wakefield on three days rest should a play-in game occur Thursday at Tropicana Field. Another option might be activating Clay Buchholz, according to WEEI’s Rob Bradford.

    Now THAT’S a desperation move. Acquire a starter just to try to win 1 game?!? Dadgum… 😯


  248. 252 berigan2electricboogaloo September 28, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Yep! Baseball is more important in Boston, too important in a way…some players can’t play there, just like they fail with the Yankees too…


  249. 253 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    And even though I haven’t been watching it, I’ve had it on “Gamecast” on my laptop. Now that Rocket City Rednecks is off, I’ve got the game on the TV. This is pretty nerve racking.


  250. 254 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm

    And Martin grounds weakly to 3B with the winning run 90′ away. And that, my friends, sums up the Braves collapse.


  251. 255 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    3 outs away from early tee times. 😐


  252. 256 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    … make that 2.


  253. 257 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:39 pm

    And we have a baserunner aboard with Freddie Freeman at bat. A pulse remains…


  254. 258 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    And as the Phillies turn the double play, the Braves turn the page on 2011.


  255. 259 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:42 pm

    I feel bad for Jack Wilson. He came on board practically assured of the very first playoff appearance of his career.



  256. 260 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:48 pm

    Then again, I suppose we could blame him. I mean, every team he’s ever been on has missed the dance. He is the common denominator.

    You know… it’s not even fun to be funny. 😐


  257. 261 Voice of Raisins September 28, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    I’m going to bed. I doubt I’ll sleep well, though. I’ve already had my nightmare.


  258. 262 berigan2electricboogaloo September 29, 2011 at 12:01 am

    Damn….my easy to reach, minor goal for the team was just to see them lose in St. Louis tomorrow, so good guys like Prado, McCann, Uggla(early in the year) even DLowe wouldn’t feel like they blew the teams chance to get to the playoffs….didn’t expect them to win a one game playoff…that couldn’t even happen. Haven’t even gone over to the AJC, can’t imagine what is being said there….


  259. 263 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 7:38 am

    I have slept. I have thought.

    Plenty of blame to go around for sure. Plenty of failure. But that said, is there anyone here that thinks we would have lost so many games in August and September if we had a healthy JJ and Tommy in the rotation? When you lose 2 All-Star pitchers for half your season, that’s tough to overcome. Yes, the rookies pitched well. Delgado proved alot to me. But the youngsters didn’t go deep enough, and stretched the bullpen, which was completely gassed coming down the stretch.

    Surely JJ or Tommy would have made at least 1 game’s difference.

    It’s not an excuse. Others needed to do their jobs. But man…

    This morning, I feel bad for Jack Wilson for the aforementioned reasons. I feel bad for Chipper – he doesn’t have many rodeos left. Yes, we are likely to be right in the mix again next season, but will Chipper still be vertical in September? Maybe… maybe not. I feel bad for Craig Kimbrel. He had a ROY season. He’ll be thinking about last night’s 9th inning until April.

    But I don’t feel bad for us here at B&S. I think we gave up on them last week. I know I did. That’s not a lack of loyalty, just a case of having both eyes open. It does have me a little sour, though. I’m not even interested in any playoffs right now. Maybe that will change. I don’t know…


  260. 264 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    My heart goes out to the Atlanta Braves, mostly because they didn’t play with any in September. – Matt Sussman of Detroit, on Twitter



  261. 265 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    So… Tyler Pastornicky:

    How’d that first MLB callup go for ya? 😎


  262. 266 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    Early chatter:

    The Braves will certainly look for a change at SS. Gonzo, even at the end of his career, will be looking for a 2-year deal. The Braves will look for a 1-year bridge to Pastornicky. (This kid needs a good nickname quickly. We’ll be talking about him from here on, and I need something alot shorter than “Pastornicky” to call him. Maybe “PNick”.)


  263. 267 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Gotta figure out a way to make room for Minor. He can’t go back to AAA. He’s too good, and he has absolutely nothing to gain by going back. Trying to trade JJ now would only return pennies on the dollar. Same with Big Red, whom I can’t imagine they’d move anyway. And he could be facing surgery. And DLowe has zero trade value. The Braves would have to eat well over half his salary just to get a bucket of balls in return. Teheran will be back at Gwinnett, but Vizcaino will likely be back in the ATL pen next year. And Delgado? In my eyes, he’s ready. But what do you do with him? I see AAA again at least for a little while.


  264. 268 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    Now… Heyward. I hope this kid figures something out over the offseason. He was clueless this year. He struggled for the first time, well… ever, and couldn’t figure out what to do about it. Next season is his watershed season. He’ll either be Francoeur #2 or JHey Part 2. I hope for the latter. Maybe he can work out with Mac and his gang this offseason.


  265. 269 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    And finally… Prado. Maybe if he wasn’t working on investments, meteorology, playing the organ, announcing, etc., he’d have some time to work on his hitting.

    Seriously, though, I see Martin going back to his utility role next year, with Conrad moving on. This team sorely needs at least the typical production you usually expect from LF. What they got was pretty weak. I see that spot as the team’s only real “splash” of the offseason. Maybe Martin gets traded to a team in need of a 2B. Martin and a pitcher (Delgado?) maybe for a productive LF? I could see it…


  266. 270 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Next year’s pen: Kimbrel, Venters, EOF, Medlen, Vizcaino, Varvaro, Martinez.


  267. 271 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    1-year bridge SS candidates: Gonzo, Jack WIlson, Orlando Cabrera, Marco Scutaro (if the Bosox do not pick up his option), Edgar Renteria.


  268. 272 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    By the way… if you missed it earlier, Fredi has already announced that all of his coaches will be returning in 2012.


  269. 273 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:31 pm

    Complete blog domination! 😈


  270. 274 Voice of Raisins September 29, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    Now… today’s blog question, should anyone else care to join me here and should anyone care to opine…

    Who would you rather have in your rotation next season: Derek Lowe or Julio Teheran/Randall Delgado?

    Follow the logic here. If DLowe remains, his spot in the rotation will cost you $15MM, and he’s been a .500 pitcher (40-39) in a Braves uni, and not trending upward either.

    If you trade him, and you could trade him for a marginal prospect if you eat $8-9MM of his remaining deal, you would open up a spot for one of the youngsters, who would be making the league minimum of roughly $500,000.

    So, you’d be filling the rotation with a talented kid from whom we could reasonably expect .500 production for half a mill plus the $9MM you have to eat, meaning close to the same production, and trending upward, for around $10MM. I don’t know about you, but that makes sense to me.

    I ask again: Who would you rather have in your rotation next season: Derek Lowe, trending downward at $15MM, or Julio Teheran/Randall Delgado, trending upward at an effective $10MM?

    I know what I would do.


  271. 275 berigan2electricboogaloo September 29, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    V, I came very close to saying, “blog domination” yesterday, but I hadn’t posted enough to deserve it…you sir, deserve it! 😉

    First, glad to see someone here…I would really hate to see everyone get so sour on the braves that they no longer cared to post here. I would really miss everyone! 😦

    Fortunately, we seem to be like heroin addicts, and can’t quit them that easily! 😕


  272. 276 Gil in Mechanicsville September 29, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Good afternoon guys, sorry I didn’t chime in earlier but the wife and I went to the ‘Rivah’ for a couple of days…

    Good points all Raisins. I was talking with my older brother today and we agreed, the Braves did not lose the wild card last night, last night was just the culmination of a season of starting pitchers not going deep into games and relievers being over used because of so many close games.


  273. 277 Gil in Mechanicsville September 29, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    In addition, so many times the hitters failed to understand situational hitting. As for Prado, I believe he would thrive in the 7 hole, hitting second, not so much. Too many guys try to do too much in each at bat rather than let the game come to them. SEE THE BALL, HIT THE BALL.. It is really that simple, trying to hit a 5 run homer in the first inning or not playing for at least one run..

    Ah well, I will not feel bad, I refuse to cast blame, it is a team game and everybody on the team shares in the spoils or not.

    The Braves in July and August could have won the Series, the guys in September were worn out both emotionally and physically. I felt pretty exhausted too just watching them.

    Now, DLowe.. With Kamikaze coming off the books, I don’t think the Braves would really mind eating 7 or 8 mill of his salary to see him go. The Braves could use him as a reliever but I think the hand writing was on the wall last year for him.

    A lot of what the Braves do next year depend on the health of Hanson and Jurgians. They have a good base from which to build, and didn’t Medlin look great?

    By the way, Hunter Pence may be the guy that gets the Philles the Championship, the guy was a Braves killer for sure.


  274. 278 berigan2electricboogaloo September 29, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    Tyler Pastornicky….hey, he will be 22 in Dec, so he’s the same age as Freddie and JHey…of course SS is harder to master at a young age..is it the hitting or fielding they are more concerned about??? I mean, we can’t have a shortstop hitting .230 for the big club! 😛

    He’ll either be Francoeur #2… just checked, Frenchy’s worst full season with the braves? 11 HR 71 RBI’s and .239 BA at the age of 24. 100 + RBI seasons at 22 and 23. Of course, he was batting in RBI positions most of the year he drove in 71. What does it prove? Nothing…except even Frenchy at his worst hit 12 points higher than JHey this season….


  275. 279 berigan2electricboogaloo September 29, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    Now, about DLowe…guys…I feel like I’m saying there is no Santa Claus. (well, that I’ve ever seen at least! 😉 )
    Let’s turn this around. We need a veteran pitcher. an Innings eater. DLowe is mentioned…guy will be 39 in June. He pitched 7 innings, 3 times all last year. . 8.75 ERA in Sept. 6.20 ERA after the all star break!!!!
    What GM in his right mind is going to pay 7-8 million for that????
    We are stuck with him. Our best hope is he turns it around (really, have you ever heard of a sinker pitcher always losing his sinker like Lowe? I remember folks like Tommy John who were better with a tired arm, but then again, not everyone is Tommy John) and that we can trade him at some point in the season.
    Or, Wren, Homeboy, etc saying they made a mistake, and either releasing him, or trading him and eating all but 2-3 million….But, they never do that sort of thing, just expect other teams to do it…


  276. 280 Gil in Mechanicsville September 29, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Ber, I never gave up, but unlike Pickett, I could face reality…

    When McCann strained his oblique, the Braves declined like a junk bond…


  277. 281 Gil in Mechanicsville September 29, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    I doubt many folks thought Wren & Company would eat 7 mill they paid Kershin but they did. Let’s face it DLowe has become the Braves number 5 guy. Of course if the offense would help out once in a while, we would not be having this conversation.


  278. 282 Gil in Mechanicsville September 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    How many guys actually pitched 7 innings for the Braves this year anyway?


  279. 283 berigan2electricboogaloo September 29, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    Gil, JJ went 7 innings or more 9 times…missing the last month.
    Hanson went 7 , 7 times, missing the last two months..
    Minor, one time.
    Beachy twice.
    Hudson 15 times, including an amazing 9 times in a row in July and August! I do NOT give him enough credit.
    Now, check out these truly offense stats I just saw…and we are bringing back our hitting coach? What does a hitting coach have to do to get fired????

    22nd Overall

    26th Overall

    26th Overall

    21st Overall


  280. 284 Gil in Mechanicsville September 30, 2011 at 3:18 am

    Ber, I think you summed up the Braves pitching problem with your last post. It was beauty which killed the beast….

    Maybe it is time we looked at the real problem of players who lack the ability to understand situational hitting and lack the ability to make adjustments.

    I am hoping Jason Heyward makes whatever adjustment necessary to become an effective hitter.

    Look for Wren to make some changes in the Braves roster PDQ too. (Left field)… Short stop…


  281. 285 Voice of Raisins September 30, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    Well… today is full of news, to be sure.

    First, Larry Parrish was fired. I think he was a scapegoat, but hey… somebody had to fall on the blade, right? According to Mr. O’B, Frank met with Parrish Thursday afternoon and made the decision to fire him after not being satisfied with Parrish’s answers. Well, there ya go.

    This is the news release:

    ATLANTA, Ga. – Atlanta Braves Executive Vice President and General Manager Frank Wren announced today that hitting coach Larry Parrish will not return for the 2012 season. A search for a new hitting coach will begin immediately.

    The remainder of the Braves staff, including bench coach Carlos Tosca, pitching coach Roger McDowell, first-base coach Terry Pendleton, third-base coach Brian Snitker and bullpen coach Eddie Perez, will all return for 2012.

    In my eyes, it is the right move. I agree that a hitting coach actually has very little impact on most players, especially veterans. But to the younger guys..? I lay JHey’s hitting woes directly at Parrish’s feet. Or more correctly, I blame his lack of adjustment at Parrish’s feet. That is his job. Or was…


  282. 286 Voice of Raisins September 30, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    A couple of other very, VERY interesting tidbits from Mr. O’B’s Twitter:

    **Wren said they have not had any discussion whatsoever about trading Heyward. But said he isn’t assured of starting RF job.

    In other words, Jason, you better work your butt off this offseason. You have something to prove in March. Message delivered.

    **Wren said he doesn’t project Lowe having spot in starting rotation. Trade or bullpen are options.

    This is a good indication that Frank actually watches the games. DLowe is officially over the hill.


  283. 287 Gil in Mechanicsville September 30, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    Keys to being a good hitting coach.

    A) Don’t mess with the guys who are hitting well

    B) Help the guys who are not


  284. 288 Gil in Mechanicsville September 30, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    I still say Frank reads our little blog every day…


  285. 289 Gil in Mechanicsville October 1, 2011 at 8:25 am

    So, the Terry Francona era is over in bean town.. tough crowd, I guess someone has to fall on their sword for the players.

    Dream Team, Red Sox offense, Braves pitching….

    So, let’s go RAYS….


  286. 290 Gil in Mechanicsville October 1, 2011 at 8:32 am

    Earth to Wren… move Prado to the utility infield spot, pick up a left/right fielder in the off season…

    Jason did actually begin to look better in the last few games this season, Fewer strike outs, more contact. It was just too late.

    Dan Uggla, you will not be allow to take the first half of the season off again next year. Go to the cage a couple of times a week during the off season.

    Now, let the games begin… Go Rays…


  287. 291 Gil in Mechanicsville October 1, 2011 at 8:38 am

    And by the way, I doubt it was Freddie who hired Linebrink and Sherrill last season, a manager can only do so much.

    You’ve got to play with the hand you are dealt.

    That said, teach McCann how to play left field, Lord knows he could not be any worse than Manny, or Old Bonds out there and allow him to keep his bat in the line up and let him catch 4 times a week instead of every day so he can play past August each year.

    I wonder what it would take to get Logan Morrison?


  288. 292 Voice of Raisins October 1, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    I would take Logan Morrison on a heartbeat. But it would take a load, I’m afraid…

    I think I’m with you, Gil. Go Rays!


  289. 293 berigan2electricboogaloo October 1, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    Don’t think I have ever felt as glad to hear a coach/manager was fired as I was when I saw V’s post about Parrish! Clearly, can’t blame all the hitting woes on him, I don’t think I heard about anyone saying how he helped them. Of course, rarely heard that about Pendleton either.
    I saw some comments over at the AJC (that I could stomach) that shared my feelings on bringing back everyone…really glad Wren took the bull by the horns and made the call. I really changed my bitter feelings about the season…weird…of course hearing that JHey and DLowe are not guaranteed anything is just icing on the cake! We have WAY too many options in the rotation to keep him there and keeping any combo of Medlin, Beachy, Minor, Tehren, Delgado out of the rotation…


  290. 294 berigan2electricboogaloo October 1, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    And some sucker team will give Linebrink a shot next year…amazing how an era can look good and a pitcher so bad…Sherrill didn’t bother me half as much as Linebrink. He actually didn’t scare me , especially against lefties…Linebrink had no luck against anyone.
    And I just thought about Nate…I know he’s gone for next year, but doesn’t it seem funny he never came back? I thought there was some chance at least….
    Let’s all tweet Morrison to talk about how he really feels about trader Jack, and seal the deal! 👿


  291. 295 berigan2electricboogaloo October 1, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    any other teams folks are rooting for??? I will never HATE the Phils, and would like to see the NL win, but the Cards might surprise folks…honestly don’t have a feel for anything this post seaon…Think any team could get lucky…and that’s a good thing! 🙂


  292. 296 Voice of Raisins October 1, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    Once it gets to this point, it’s whoever is/gets hot… makes it pretty much wide open. I gotta feeling about the Rays, though…


  293. 297 Carolina Lady October 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Ber, thanks for you comments (Sep 25)! I appreciate it very much. A lot going on in my world – most really great, some devastating. Most of the foundation work on the house is complete. I think I’ll have 2 piers put in under the chimney and see if that will correct the remaining big problems. Now I just have to figure out how to repay the $10,000+ it all costs! 😀

    I haven’t commented on the Braves because they did exactly what I expected but didn’t want to add any negativity. OK, Frank, ya got a big job before ya. Get busy!! And – thanks for reading B&S. Got the best baseball men in the world here to guide you and explain things to ya!!

    Nice COOOOOOL weather at last! The air is fresh and invigorating for a change! My kind of weather!!

    OK – now what for next year, guys??


  294. 298 Gil in Mechanicsville October 3, 2011 at 8:53 am

    So, the bright side of it all is I have no scheduling conflicts between TV shows and baseball….

    What we don’t know is what injuries have plaques Heyward this season. My contention is his back is/was preventing him from swinging free and easy.

    McCann needs to be used less as a catcher and learn to shag fly balls in left field.

    The Brooks Conrad era for all intents and purposes has come to a close in Atlanta.

    Guys like Eric Hinski need more at bats than he was given.

    Freddie Freeman is a keeper. I don’t know if the Braves will be able to afford him when he grows up.

    Kris Medlin will be in the starting rotation before the end of next year’s season.

    Derek Lowe will be somewhere else by the end of spring training.

    Chipper is getting old. What they did not apparently tell him when they removed his meniscus is he would be left with bone on bone…. Look for him to wear a brace next year.

    Dan Uggla will not get a pass the first three months of the season again….

    The Braves will miss AGon’s glove but not his bat.

    Lack of depth in your bullpen rears its ugly head at some point during the season, too bad for the Braves it was the last game of the season. Of course, we here as the old B&S knew that in April. We saw what happened with Jonny Venters in September of 2010.

    Matt Diaz is not an everyday player but he is a great platoon guy. Just wish he would level his swing out a bit but then, he probably couldn’t hit water falling out of a boat.

    In this era of speed and small ball, Larry Parrish was still a go for broke kind of guy.


  295. 299 Voice of Raisins October 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    Vaca week for me, folks. If I seem to disappear for a few days, it isn’t because the season is over. I’m not also over… just taking a week’s break. I’ll be in and out, maybe with a fresh outlook for 2012. Who knows…


  296. 300 Gil in Mechanicsville October 3, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    Have a great week V


  297. 301 berigan2electricboogaloo October 4, 2011 at 9:52 am

    CL, isn’t it beyond ridiculous what it costs these days to just have repairs done on a house??? People used to buy houses for 10 K not all that long ago. Remind me again, was it a tree that did that damage??? We have a tree very close to the house….


  298. 302 berigan2electricboogaloo October 4, 2011 at 10:00 am

    Have a good trip V! 🙂
    Gil, I’ll chat about baseball later today, don’t fret! 😉


  299. 303 Gil in Mechanicsville October 4, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    Speaking of trees, discovered why I should have bought a better chain saw… And the one I bought four years ago was $400…

    Oh well, my back will not let me do that much anyway.

    Now baseball… Cards are tough… Detroit is close to knocking off the Yankees, Brewers are not even going to let the DBacks get a smell…


  300. 304 berigan2electricboogaloo October 5, 2011 at 2:07 am

    Gil, the Cards lost, Yankees won, and DBacks won….
    shows you just never know, you know????


  301. 305 Gil in Mechanicsville October 5, 2011 at 7:28 am

    Ber, another reason not to bet on baseball…. Too unpredictable. Just ask the Braves…


  302. 306 Gil in Mechanicsville October 6, 2011 at 5:41 am

    So, the Dbacks and the Cards are making a game of it all. Not going quietly in the night…


  303. 307 berigan2electricboogaloo October 6, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    they sure are! Reminds me of the Braves this year…not quite sure how though! 😉


  304. 308 berigan2electricboogaloo October 6, 2011 at 5:48 pm

    Gil, did you see part ll on Wren???

    I wonder if Prado was slowed down by that Staf infection, more than we realize???


  305. 309 Carolina Lady October 7, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    Hi, guys! My (required) weekly check-in! (I corrected an error there. It read: “My (required) weekly chick in!) lol Well, that might be right, too!

    Thanks for the condolences on Jim & Steph. They were a really special couple and friends.

    I followed your link above, Ber. First time I’ve been there since —-I don’t know when. “We talk baseball, other sports, music, movies, BBQ and whatever (except politics or religion)”. Ummm, doesn’t that sound just a leeetle bit familiar??? Plagarism?? But we’re better because we CAN discuss politics and religion and still be respectful and friends. (take that, ajc!) lol

    For my birthday, I have a Hershey Bar! Large. All to myself. :-))))))) It is sitting over there whispering, “CL. I’m over here. Come on, CL. You know you can’t resist.” 😀

    Baseball – I think the staph infection was a factor. That stuff is devastating and takes a long time to recover. I think Mac’s side was still a factor. I’m sad that Chipper is, in effect, a part-time player now. But other teams never know when he’s going to explode on their party! I think I need another cup of coffee.

    (I may not be a young chick, but I refuse to be an old biddy!)

    Chick out!

    😀 😀 😀


  306. 310 berigan2electricboogaloo October 7, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    CL, weekly Chick in! 😆 Wish I had thought of it!
    Sounds like you are having a very good birthday, hope for many more happy ones! 🙂


  307. 311 Voice of Raisins October 8, 2011 at 8:09 am

    Happy day after your birthday, CL, and congratulations to the Cards and Brewers. I am thinking that Charlie Manuel may wish he had played the last 3 regular season games differently about now…


  308. 312 berigan2electricboogaloo October 8, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Yep, and Ryan Howard my have blown out his Achilles, yikes!


  309. 313 Voice of Raisins October 8, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    Howard recorded 3 outs in that half an inning…

    Out #3, out of the playoffs, and out for a while . Yeow.


  310. 314 Gil in Mechanicsville October 9, 2011 at 5:18 am

    Good morning all, back from the ‘outer limits’… and here I thought it was Raisins who would be gone. Long story so I won’t bore ya’ll with the details.

    A happy belated birthday to CL… may you enjoy many more. Not belated of course but you know what I mean. 🙂

    Anyway, who’ld have thunk it? Not one ‘big market’ team left… Don’t we all feel really sad for Fox Sports? Just a reminder of how having the best record is no real advantage in a short series. Just ask Bobby Cox.

    Cards may well be the team to beat now. They have been tested by over coming a big lead by the Braves, For sure, I am keeping my money in my pocket when it comes to wagering on the out come on these games.


  311. 315 Gil in Mechanicsville October 10, 2011 at 8:19 am

    So, just as I laud the Cards, they get blown out by the Brewers. My crystal ball has been on the blink lately. I think it might be interference from sunspots…

    Where is my tin foil hat?


  312. 316 Gil in Mechanicsville October 10, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Ah, Columbus Day, be sure to extend a greeting to a native American.

    Just goes to show you what can happen when you have unfettered immigration.

    Of course, it is not the first time a man discovered a new place because he did not stop to ask directions.


  313. 317 berigan2electricboogaloo October 10, 2011 at 10:28 am

    Gil, I know, every time I think a team is hot, a chosen team like say the Rays, they are the first to lose….


  314. 318 Gil in Mechanicsville October 10, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    All I ask for is the umpiring to be fair and accurate, that way the game can be decided by the players and with that, the best team will usually win.


  315. 319 Gil in Mechanicsville October 11, 2011 at 10:49 am

    So… no structural damage to J-Hey’s shoulder… Of course, learning to play thru the pain can be tough too. Could explain a lot of the whys about Jason’s sophomore woes.

    Now other baseball news. Cards bounce back in a big way, Rangers continue to roll. I’m not counting anyone out yet. Of course, the Tigers picked a bad time to lose their boppers….


  316. 320 Voice of Raisins October 11, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Ya know.. they are prescribing a strengthening regimen for JHey and his back/shoulder. Have you seen him already? And he’s gonna work out to strengthen? Yikes… 😯


  317. 321 Carolina Lady October 11, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    @Gil “Of course, it is not the first time a man discovered a new place because he did not stop to ask directions”

    I’m going to sit here and try my best to be polite and not ROFL – Nevermind, that isn’t working. R.O.F.L. 😀 😀 😀 😀


  318. 322 Voice of Raisins October 12, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Newsday’s Ken Davidoff includes this little tidbit in his offseason suggestions for the Yankees:

    Trade A.J. Burnett to Atlanta for Derek Lowe

    Burnett makes $16.5 million in 2012 and 2013, while Lowe makes $15 million next year and then becomes a free agent, so the Yankees would have to include a healthy amount of dough to make this palatable for Atlanta.

    But who in New York doesn’t have A.J. fatigue at this point? As Girardi said Tuesday of Burnett, “You get older as a pitcher, you’re not immune to adjustments. And you have to make them, because sometimes you’re going to lose a mile or two.”

    Burnett is not a “make adjustments” type of guy. You know who is? Lowe, who — if you look at his peripheral numbers — got hurt by some bad luck in 2011, should be motivated by his walk year and doesn’t get fazed in pressure situations.

    Hmmm… I have to mull this one over. I certainly can see Davidoff’s point of view. His goal, of course, is to improve the Yankees not the Braves. The question then is simple: would it be a win/win deal for both teams? He asks the question, “… who in New York doesn’t have A.J. fatigue at this point?” Similarly, we in Atlanta can ask, “Who in Atlanta doesn’t have DLowe fatigue at this point?”

    Maybe a change of scenery would be beneficial for both pitchers. DLowe has seen success in the AL East, and A.J. has seen success in the NL East.

    I see the big hangup here as the difference in years. DLowe is now one and done. A.J. has 2 years left on his deal. The Yankees could and would “include a healthy amount of dough to make this palatable”, as Davidoff said. But Atlanta has a handful of young pitchers ready to contribute on the major league level. That, to me, would be the deal breaker.

    Look.. I know this is merely speculation on the part of a newspaper columnist, but it is an interesting scenario. It also underscores the need for Frank to find someone that will take DLowe of his hands in a way that won’t strangle the Braves in cash outlay. That list is going to be pretty dang short. In fact, there may not be any teams on that list.

    So.. you have to get creative. Not DLowe for Chone Figgins creative – that would be crap for crap – but DLowe for A.J.? The bottom line is simple… Frank changed the locks on the clubhouse and didn’t give DLowe a new key. He has to find a taker somewhere. What if this is the only type scenario he finds?

    So the question is simple: Is a “change of scenery” swap desirable over keeping the expensive status quo? Or is the “devil you know” more desirable than the “devil you don’t know”?

    What say ye?


  319. 324 berigan2electricboogaloo October 12, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    V, almost impossible to find a way to say this without sounding ghey….I would like to see JHey and Mike Stanton standing next to each other shirtless…I think Stanton would dwarf him, upperbody wise.


  320. 325 berigan2electricboogaloo October 13, 2011 at 7:50 am

    V, it’s an interesting proposition (DLowe as hitting coach 🙂 ) and DLowe for AJ…..but like you, Just don’t know if it makes sense. Plus, AJ’s wife might not like the really long limo rides from wherever they live. 🙄
    Too bad Chone Figgins doesn’t play SS. Can you believe as recently as 2009 he hit .298, had a league leading 101 walks, and stole 42 bases in both 09 and 10??? Then hit .188 for 2011??? Weird…

    Also not exactly crazy about the braves thinking about the Chi Sox hitting coach. Adam Dunn had the worst b.a. ever from a full time player. (.159)This after hitting 38 or more homers 7 straight years. and I read he hadn’t been able to get thru to Gordon Beckham either. Who is a success story for him, perhaps Lilibridge????


  321. 326 Gil in Mechanicsville October 14, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Ber, Lilibrdge could hit when he first joined the Braves AAA club in Richmond, his ability to make contact with the ball seemingly disappeared after a stint with Atlanta. Maybe he looked at some old film.

    DLowe as a hitting coach, not so different from a catcher being a pitching coach maybe…

    Anyone else see that ‘bad hop’ double that jump starter the Tigers last night? See, that’s the thing about baseball, you never know what is going to be the instant that everything changes. If Jack Wilson had made the play in the eight inning he should have, maybe the Braves would be playing the Brewers right now…. Naw… that wasn’t going to happen with the Braves anemic run scoring would it?


  322. 327 Gil in Mechanicsville October 14, 2011 at 9:20 am

    And now a not so expert analysis of the Braves’ hitting woes… They repeatedly failed to hit the other teams pitchers’ mistakes. Pop ups, foul balls straight back, etc while other teams seemingly had the ability to crush every pitch the Braves left up in the zone or those hangers that sat on a tee.

    Too many times the Braves had guys trying to hit 5 run homers when a single would do….

    Attention Braves hitters, you do not get extra points for distance…..


  323. 328 Gil in Mechanicsville October 14, 2011 at 9:22 am

    And AJ Burnett? It would take a LOT OF MONEY to make such a deal even remotely palatable to the Braves…. Then they would ‘flip’ him…


  324. 329 berigan2electricboogaloo October 14, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    Gil, I saw an amazing stat in the Brewers game. Ryan Braun drives in the runner 70% from 3rd with less than 2 outs! Then they said the league average was around 50% !!!! Why do I feel the braves number was about 15%???


  325. 330 Voice of Raisins October 14, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    Well.. I set out today to write a new lead detailing the pro’s and con’s of keeping or trading Derek Lowe. It was going to go into great detail about his contract, Fredi’s options for DLowe in 2012, and trade possibilities.

    Funny thing happened. As I was writing, it became increasingly clear to me that only one option was really viable.

    Regardless of the amount of salary “eaten”, or the return gained, DLowe must be traded. And the reasons aren’t lengthy enough to merit a full lead. So, here ya go:

    #1 – Worst case scenario is that DLowe remains on the roster. Net dollar effect is $15MM. Net roster effect is disaster. With younger (and better) arms waiting, DLowe cannot, and will not according to Fredi, be in the rotation. But the same can be said for the bullpen. DLowe must go.

    #2 – Any trade removes DLowe from blocking younger, cheaper and better arms from emerging. And even if the Braves have to eat $9MM to send him away, they save $6MM. Add only the minimum salary back in for Cory Gearrin or Anthony Varvaro and the team is still ahead $5MM+.

    Could he rebound and have a decent 2012 season in his contract year? Sure. And I hope he does… somewhere else. Preferably in the AL. He’s gotta go. Period. No matter what it takes. Is there really any intelligent argument to the contrary?


  326. 331 Gil in Mechanicsville October 15, 2011 at 7:19 am

    Is there really any intelligent argument to the contrary?

    Remember, this is baseball you are talking about… Since when does intelligence have anything to do with it? 🙂


  327. 333 Voice of Raisins October 17, 2011 at 8:50 am

    Well, with little fanfare, and almost no chatter, the Braves FOT’s (Front Office Types) held their annual organizational meetings last week in their Disney home away from home. Typically, I suppose, it’s not really newsworthy to most, but to news junkies like us, well like me at least, it is on my radar. It’s the time of year where they map out their general plan for the offseason – you know, where they say, “OK, this is what we have, this is what we need to let go, this what we need to bring in, and this is what we have to spend.”

    Granted, not generally exciting stuff, but I sure do wish I could sit in on them and voice a few of my own opinions. What would I say? Glad you asked…

    Position by position:

    * We can start with the certainties. Catcher, 1B, 2B, 3B, CF and RF. They can talk all they want about RF being an open competition. There’s a Greek word for that… baloney. That will be JHey’s for as long as he wears a tomahawk.

    * What to do in left field? Well, JTerd (Joe Terdoslavich), currently a 1B, is tearing up the AFL. He hits for both power and average, and is being strongly considered for a position change to LF. 1B seems to be occupied for a while. But he will start 2012 in AA, and isn’t even on the radar for competing for a spot on the 25. We need to acquire a veteran guy who is a proven hitter. Frank’s track record says it won’t be through FA. A trade is a’comin’. What about Martin? Martin Prado is one of the best utility guys in either league. He is just a mediocre everyday outfielder. He would benefit the Braves better back in the super-utility role.

    *Bench? Welcome back Martin; see ya Conrad; please rebound Big Hinske; and get a hit, would ya Matty? Rossy is thankfully back, too. We need a backup SS, though. Maybe we address that after we address the starting SS…

    * Which brings me to SS. I’ll bet that Gonzo returns on a 1 year deal. He’d probably like a 2 year deal, but I honestly don’t think he’ll get that anywhere, and not from ATL either. Love his glove. His bat could do more, but he wins you games with his D. Pitchers love him.

    * Even though the bullpen wore down toward season’s end, I think you still have most of it already in place. Gone is Line Drive Linebrink. Gone is Scott Proctor. Gone is George Sherrill. The ineffectiveness of those 3 forced Fredi to go to his horses more often. Peter finally made it back for a few appearances before his shoulder turned to lunch meat. His tenure with the Braves is done. His cost now exceeds his benefit. Look for him to be released. But we welcome back Kris Medlen, and Arodys Vizcaino proved he is a capable MLB pitcher. I won’t be surprised to see Arodys slide into EOF’s 7th inning role, allowing EOF to move around and make the pen a bit more versatile. Jonny and Special K return to their shut down roles. Martinez was very good at times in his long relief role, and I see no reason to believe he won’t return to the same. So 1 spot remains… DLowe? God, I hope not. I think Anthony Varvaro earned it, though many think that Cory Gearrin would fit Peter’s old “ground ball specialist” role. I can see that. That will likely be a spring training battle.

    * DLowe has got to go… even if only for the clichéd “bag o’ balls”. The truth is, he still has value, if not $15MM worth. But he is a veteran hurler who can adjust and can still pitch effectively at times. Remember the near no-hitter earlier this season? Yes, that was this season. That said, he has worn out his welcome in Atlanta, and would in all likelihood benefit from the proverbial change of scenery. The only real question is how much $$$ are the Braves willing to eat in order to move him? I’ve already beat this mule and won’t rehash it here.

    * Finally, we must address the rotation. Huddy is the clear #1 ace. Beachy is only getting better, and Minor proved he belongs… and is the only lefty there. Obviously, there are injury concerns surrounding both JJ and Tommy. That’s too bad. We needed one of those guys as a trade chip this offseason. Can’t do it now, you’d just get pennies back on the dollar. But Julio Teheran has nothing left to prove at AAA, and Delgado established himself in his big league starts as well. Too many starters… it’s a good problem to have. But if you’re Frank, it’ll give you even more grey hair. There will be more scrutiny over what he does here than anywhere else on the roster. That’s a tough call. If it were me, I’d take it to spring, prove one of either JJ or Tommy are healthy, and find a team desperate for a starter. That’s where you’ll find your LF.


  328. 334 Voice of Raisins October 17, 2011 at 8:51 am

    Wow.. that got longer than I planned… almost Savannah Guy-like! 😀


  329. 335 Carolina Lady October 17, 2011 at 11:16 am

    We have a new lead – or will have shortly! Thanks, V!!


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