#132: PO-TEN-TIAL

Vox O'Raisins

by Vox O’Raisins

PO·TEN-TIAL
adjective:  having or showing the capacity to become or develop into something in the future
noun:  
1. latent qualities or abilities that may be developed and lead to future success or usefulness
2. physics:  the quantity determining the energy of mass in a gravitational field                                 or of charge in an electric field.

 

The Braves simply do not have the pieces in place to be a championship team, and I have to keep reminding myself that they are very young. What are they missing?

Dizzy Dean

Dizzy Dean

 

 

 

#1.  a rotation leading ace. That’s right, I said it again. It’s much ballyhooed, and much debated, but a champion has an ace to lead the way. Julio has the potential, but an ace doesn’t go into a critical game, get a lead, and wet his pants.  Julio did that yesterday.  Most championship contenders have that tough 1-2 punch, like Kershaw-Greinke or Verlander-Scherzer.. The Braves have… uh, Teheran-Harang?

 

FredMcGriff3

 

 

#2.  a slugger. One might think about Gattis or JUp or Freddie. The NL HR leader as of today is the Fish’ Stanton with 26. The closest Brave is JUp with 19, tied for 7th. The league RBI leader as of today is also Stanton with 74. The closest Brave is JUp with 64, tied for 8th. Both are middle of the road of 15 teams. Not championship caliber.

 

Chipp4

 

 

#3.  a leader. The great teams have a strong character leading the way ala Chipper Jones. The current Braves have a couple of Cali surfers, a couple of guys from a FLA retirement haven, and a handful of dudes who barely speak English. The only 2 guys who show any fire at all are BJ, who vents his K frustrations at umpires, and Chris Johnson, whom I really think may be a little unstable.

 

 

Here’s a curveball for you…

Fredi Gonzalez

Fredi Gonzalez

 

I have vented plenty at Fredi, and I think he has deserved most of that, but to be honest he’s been dealt a pretty rotten hand. And none of us knows how much pressure he gets from above to play certain players. His biggest fault may simply be that he doesn’t handle the press as deftly as Bobby, and therefor makes himself out to look like a doof. He’s had pitchers go down quicker than a Malaysian airliner, multiple black holes in his lineup, and no clear productive hitters on which to hinge any lineups. And somehow, even after a historic roadie to the worst coast, we are still in the hunt in mid-August. I guess he can do something right.

Here’s the 2-edged sword. Things are not likely to improve a whole lot over the off-season. We’re locked in to most of our pieces, and don’t have the financial flexibility to make any significant upgrades. But the flip side is that Julio does have ace-potential. Freddie does have slugger-potential. And any number of our youngsters could step up and become a leader.. potentially. But it’s all potential.  I had a coach in high school who taught me that “potential just means you ain’t done $#!+ yet.” I guess the key word is “yet”.

Will those elements emerge? Maybe. The potential is on the roster. But they ain’t done $#!+ yet…

~ Vox O’Raisins ~

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384 Responses to “#132: PO-TEN-TIAL”


  1. 1 Carolina Lady August 8, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    Just great, Vox! And thanks for letting us hijack your post! 😀

    Like

  2. 2 Vox O'Raison August 8, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    Tip o’ the cap the the graphics department. It’s the best!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 3 Carolina Lady August 8, 2014 at 10:56 pm

    We live to serve! 😀 Thanks!

    Like

  4. 4 Vox O'Raison August 8, 2014 at 11:37 pm

    Whew!

    Like

  5. 5 Vox O'Raison August 8, 2014 at 11:39 pm

    Weekend checklist:

    #1 – beat Strasburg ✔

    Liked by 2 people

  6. 6 Gil in Mechanicsville August 9, 2014 at 12:33 am

    Fantastic opine my friend… Braves stave off the gNats assault but a little too close for my liking. It is why you keep trying to score runs every chance you get.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. 7 berigan2electricboogaloo August 9, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    When it was 7-0…I have to say, I was pretty confident the braves were going to win. I mean, 7-0! Santana was on a role. So, thank goodness rain decided to stop the Nats, as it looked like they were going to roar ahead.
    Still made it too close, but a win is a win

    Like

  8. 9 Vox O'Raison August 10, 2014 at 12:21 am

    MLBTR: The Braves were close to pulling off a major deadline deal that would have sent center fielder B.J. Upton and a starter (which could have been either Mike Minor or Ervin Santana) to an unidentified club and for an unidentified return. The nature of the hypothetical return has not been revealed, but Rosenthal says that Atlanta ultimately felt it was not receiving sufficient value in return. Ultimately, the conception of the move was intended more to shake up the roster and clubhouse (in addition, no doubt, to shedding Upton’s future obligations), and Rosenthal says that a deal of that type could be revisited in the offseason.

    Holy cow!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. 10 Carolina Lady August 10, 2014 at 12:33 am

    Wowser. Verrrrry interesting.

    Like

  10. 11 berigan2electricboogaloo August 10, 2014 at 2:55 am

    If that deal was for BJ and Minor, the Brave were stupid not to make it…STUPID! Minor may turn it around, but right now, he is one of the worst starters in the game. 4 of the past 5 seasons, his era has been above 4…he is still only 26(27 in Dec) but…I am sure you can find a replacement for that kind of production.
    And if BJ doesn’t say, hit .260 the rest of the year, no one will take a chance on him then

    If it’s Santana, well, that’s different, but…if you are realistic about the team, they have a very tough hill to clime(really, the only reason the braves are still in it, is the Nats have way underperformed, plus key injuries) and take a page out of the Red Sox book, and save a ton of money this year(and next not paying BJ 15 mil for 2015 and the next 2 years after, ) and use the savings to get a true #1, Max Schurzer (sp) or David Price..
    I know, a big risk…but, if you want to beat the Nats(and the Marlins and Mets) for the next several years, a true ace will be key…

    Of course, I have to realize, I am saying this 10 days after the trade deadline, when the team lost 8 straight, and now 9 of 10.

    Who knows what, if anything the braves were getting, besides salary relief.(and how much salary relief)

    Like

  11. 12 berigan2electricboogaloo August 10, 2014 at 3:12 am

    and speaking of stupid…I sure hope everyone was a stupid as me and stayed up til 2:30 🙄
    Harang, sure has deserved a better fate this year, really has turned around his career.
    BJ J Up, and JHey were a combined 0 for 12.
    And I was about to say JHey and to a lesser extent, BJ have been hitting the ball fairly hard the last week, tonight…same ol same ol. JHey was having trouble catching up to Tyler Clippard’s 91 MPH fastball…Not good.

    And will FG ever get that David Carpenter is a 1 inning guy? Just cuz you want someone to be a 2 inning guy, doesn’t mean he is going to be one. Just like Kimbrel didn’t do so well the last time he tried to go 2. Hard I imagine for guys throwing upper 90’s to maintain velocity and location.

    Then James Russell comes in, he of the .314 BA against lefties to face the Overrated Kid… OK works a walk. So, James Russell, he of the .103 BA against Righties, it taken out, for Varvaro. 5th game in 7-8 days. Isn’t successful
    But, ultimately an offense that scores 1 run in 11 innings, ain’t gonna win a whole lot….

    Like

  12. 13 Gil in Mechanicsville August 10, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    I went to bed thinking the game was raained out, just as well, would have never made it to the end. It was tough reading the headlines this AM however.

    Too bad Frank did not pull off that deal, I doubt he will get another opportunity.

    Fredi suffers from the same type of short term memory that Bobby C once did, does not know the names of all the pitchers in the pen so he just says, get up “flavor of the week” and then seems confused when they don’t perform.

    Yep. I’m thinking Harang should be able to command a little more than 1 mill next season…..

    Like

  13. 14 Gil in Mechanicsville August 11, 2014 at 7:40 am

    That was more like it, Woods twirled a gem…

    Like

  14. 15 Vox O'Raison August 11, 2014 at 8:05 am

    How is it that JUp can appear to be just mediocre until you look at his numbers? The dude is actually having a pretty good season, and his career numbers are dadgum good themselves. But he is very quietly putting together a solid season. Just imagine if he had guys on base in front of him!

    Like

  15. 16 berigan2electricboogaloo August 11, 2014 at 9:17 am

    V, I think it’s the streakiness of his hitting. But yep, right up there with FF this year.
    V, did you also notice Alex Wood did not wet himself last night? 😉
    He really is looking much better, the espn folks were talking about how he improved his curve during the offseason….
    Still have the Nats number! 🙂

    Like

  16. 17 Vox O'Raison August 11, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Definitely, Ber. Could have had the sweep. Should have had the sweep. I hope that one doesn’t come back to bite us.

    Like

  17. 19 berigan2electricboogaloo August 11, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    CL, funny you should post that link….Saw this story on FF on ESPN’s Baseball tonight, last night…
    Apparently from June…never saw it before. Makes one like the guy even more…
    http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=11086535

    Liked by 2 people

  18. 20 Vox O'Raison August 11, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    According to DOB, the “scuttled” trade involving BJ was essentially a swap of BJ’s bad contract for a shorter term bad contract, and we throw in either Minor or Santana. In Rosenthal’s article that revealed it, he says the deal could be revisited in winter. If we revisit it in winter, Santana will be a FA, so Minor would be the guy. Interesting. There is much speculation as to the other team and other bad contract, but thus far no clue as to the identities…

    Like

  19. 21 Vox O'Raison August 11, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    God must be a Braves fan. The Dodgers are activating newly acquired Kevin Correia to start tonight’s game, bumping their starters back a game to give them extra rest. This means that the Braves have LA coming in for a 4 game series and still miss both Kershaw and Greinke. It’s a miracle!!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. 22 Vox O'Raison August 11, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- Boni, SS
    2- Stella, 2B
    3- Gumby, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- JHey, RF
    6- Gatt, C
    7- CJohn, 3B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Julio, RHP

    Like

  21. 23 berigan2electricboogaloo August 11, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    V, that or to show Braves fans that this just isn’t going to be their year, when you can’t touch the guy with the 4.79 ERA
    and once again…mental GIANT Freddi Gonzalez put in James Russell, he of the .314 BA against lefties, to face a lefty. Actually made a decent pitch, but it was hit. Then, he takes him out, so he doesn’t face a right handed hitter, guys he keeps to a .113 BA. Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?
    And now multiple errors , that won’t show up in the box score….6-1…if the braves win this game….Well…it would truly take a miracle from God….

    Like

  22. 24 berigan2electricboogaloo August 11, 2014 at 9:59 pm

    Well, Frenchy went 2 for 24 with the Padres, and was DFA’ed today… .296 in the minors, but the minors ain’t the majors, in case ya didn’t know…and that old dog is never going to learn new tricks.
    In better former braves news, Josh Willingham was traded by the Twins to the Royals, which may free up some more playing time for Jordan Schafer,
    so far for the Twins, he’s 5 for 16 (.313) with 4 stolen bases.
    Good for Schafer!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. 25 Vox O'Raison August 12, 2014 at 7:29 am

    And this perfectly epitomizes my frustration with Fredi Gonzalez. It also confirms that this is not a contending season. Too many holes. I am ready to shed Santana’s salary, to shed Doumit’s salary, and to begin looking forward to next year.

    Like

  24. 26 Vox O'Raison August 12, 2014 at 8:03 am

    More clarification on the “scuttled” BJ trade last month. Apparently there was one specific trade scenario, but the important point to understand is that Braves were actively trying to shed his contract by dangling a pitcher as incentive. The potential to revisit that in the offseason is not to the same specific trade, but more so to the same scenario. They will offer him up as a bad contract swap, and give a pitcher in the deal as incentive. The idea being that they take back another team’s bad contract, but for a shorter term than BJ’s deal, which runs through 2017.

    There are many who think that dumping BJ will screw the Braves chances of re-signing JUp at the end of his deal through next season. 1st, I’m not so sure it necessarily would have that effect. 2nd, I’m not so sure the Braves will attempt to re-sign him. JHey’s contract is also up at that point, and I don’t see them re-signing both. Plus, there could be the potential to move La Stella to LF to accommodate Peraza.

    Like

  25. 27 Vox O'Raison August 12, 2014 at 8:07 am

    And while I am venting, one of my biggest disappointments this season is Ramiro Pena. I have watched him make horrible decisions at the plate, and look even worse in the field. Wonder if we could also dump his contract in August as well? Gosselin looks fine in that super-sub role to me, and Pastor can man the 25th spot on the bench at a lower salary..

    Like

  26. 28 berigan2electricboogaloo August 12, 2014 at 9:16 am

    Naturally, found this clip on a jazz forum I check out from time to time…Dodgers vs Cards in 1959 at the LA Coliseum. As the guy who posted it said…”Jack Brickhouse calls, Roger Craig pitches, Stan Musical plays first, Pee Wee Reese coaches third (and maybe has a player run through his hold signal), Don Zimmer gets tossed in the 2nd, the list goes on.”
    The guy leading off for the Cards, Joe Cunningham, hit 343 that year, with a .453 OBP! And…l have never heard of him.

    Like

  27. 29 berigan2electricboogaloo August 12, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    V, not sure what has happened to Pena this year. One thing I just noticed is in 2013, before getting injured in June, He had 97 AB’s. 80 batting left handed, and hit .313 batting left. 2 for 17 RH
    this year, 19 for 96 batting left handed, for a .198 BA, 7 for 25 .280 RH.
    Odd…and his defense was flawless it seemed last year. To be slightly fair to him, he was taken out at 2nd…not sure how much that had to do with the errant throw.
    From DOB Fredi G on botched double play in 6th: “You can’t assume a double play, but in the major league level, most guys turn that, 99.9 %” Of course, Bonifacio was the SS first, then the 2nd baseman, and yeah, he should have made the play…but should he be called out, thrown under the bus??? When was the last time FG called out BJ for striking out all the time? 99.9% of guys hit a hanging nothing ball like that one, and he rolled out. Or to Chris Johnson, sure, he’s hitting .271, but his OBP is under .300, that’s hard to do, 99.9 % of hitters hitting .270+ have a .300 or higher OBP.
    Whether he or Pena made those plays or not, chances are the braves still weren’t going to come back…
    and one more thing. I simply can’t wait to see Simmons come back too soon because of an error…cuz watching him be hobbled, and not able to get to certain plays, instead of putting him on the DL (which would only cost him 6-7 more games) its just too risky. I mean, imagine if he had played during the 0-8 road trip, the braves wouldn’t have lost all those games…wait, he played during 7 games and they lost all of them?
    Don’t care…he HAS to come back too soon! Have to make panicky moves now!

    Like

  28. 30 Gil in Mechanicsville August 12, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    Whhooowee, the sarcasm is thick today.. 🙂

    Things were going swimmingly until the 6th.

    Yep, Fredi is no Bobby Cox, will lay the blame somewhere other than himself each time. Why move Boni? Couldn’t Pena play 2nd?

    Y’all are right, too many holes.

    Fredi’s bullpen management dooms this team to also ran status. Sad really, too many good players to be this bad but they are young.

    Like I said, This is the 2006 team reincarnate…

    Like

  29. 31 Gil in Mechanicsville August 12, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    On the plus side, lots of tradable contracts other than Melvin’s…

    Managers cannot win games but they sure can lose em.

    Like

  30. 32 Vox O'Raison August 12, 2014 at 4:04 pm

    Well, we have all opined ad nauseum about what the Braves will do with the Gattis/Bethancourt situation after this season. I am beginning to believe that it will be addressed by dealing with another problem. Rela or not, there is a perception that the Upton brothers just don’t do things :the Braves way”. I don’t know if that’s accurate or not, but I do know the perception is there. And for a club trying to sell seats, and not doing so well in that area of late, perception is everything.

    I won’t be surprised if the Braves continue their effort to dump BJ in the offseason, and trade Justin away too. After all, they’ll have to deal with his pending FA anyway in 2015. But if they trade him this offseason, they’ll get a decent return, and open up LF for Gatt which opens up C for Bethancourt.

    Now… I know the first thing everyone says is that Gatt is a liability in LF. Well, he played several games there in 2013, and he didn’t exactly embarrass himself. In fact, I’ll go as far as to say he is at least on a par defensively with Matt Holliday, of whom you never hear anyone complain. Behind the plate, he has to receive every pitch. In LF, he’ll average less than 10 plays a game.

    This team needs a transformation. It needs a shakeup. It needs a kickstart. They are slowly sinking into what the Hawks have been for many years, just good enough to hang around, but not good enough to progress. And by hanging around, they don’t do the things necessary to get decisively better because there is a perception that they are “so close”. Problem is, they stay on that side of “close” without ever crossing over.

    Like

  31. 33 Gil in Mechanicsville August 12, 2014 at 7:09 pm

    Josie ask me if I could make three changes in the Braves line up, what would they be? Other than firing Fredi G. and aside from pitchers, who are always a crap shoot from the moment they brush their teeth in the morning
    until the lay their heads upon their pillows at night, my reply was 1. Dump Melvin, somehow, someway, move him off the team, 2. Bring up Bethencourt, now Gattis can be traded to an AL team or he could be moved to left field but honestly, he is not a ML catcher. A ML hitter but not a catcher. He could even play first for some other teams but moving him to left, Justin to right and J Hey to center would work. 3. Trade Chris Johnson. Chris is not a bad player, he even has a reasonable contract and some value but the Braves really need a high value hitter and field at the position.

    Pitching is a whole nother can of worms…

    2006 guys, 2006

    Liked by 1 person

  32. 34 Gil in Mechanicsville August 12, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    And you are right, At some point you have to pull the trigger

    Like

  33. 35 berigan2electricboogaloo August 12, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    V, those are risky moves, but I like it! Right handed power, heck any outfielder power is rare as a hen’s tooth these days. Plus him being so young…seems like you could get a lot for him. The braves could try to keep him, but with BJ’s contract….if BJ is a 15 mil player(in both theory and contract) then what is Justin? 20 Mil? 25 Mil a year? Yanks and Red Sox would like him, no doubt….Red Sox have the players, Yanks don’t. Interesting.
    Of course, the Braves would like some stars to attract fans for the new park, and in theory(that word again) Justin has a better track record, than JHey, but if JHey can truly get on track batwise, naturally, folks would rather see him get the deal…

    Like

  34. 36 Carolina Lady August 12, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Just a thought that occurred to me: Heyward’s real woes began after the Uptons arrived if I remember correctly. I wonder if – he lost confidence/something mental when they came aboard. Feeling badly overshadowed? I also wonder if – he would eventually revert back to form if they were no longer in the same outfield. Somehow, he’s not the same kid who first came up. No longer has that same look about him, not the same aura. I’m guessing that the atmosphere in the clubhouse is pretty rocky but don’t know anywhere to place blame/reason except the manager’s office. Or maybe having that fabulous home-made chocolate brownie earlier is causing my blood sugar to drop too fast. 🙂

    Like

  35. 37 berigan2electricboogaloo August 12, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Gil, I think Gattis could be a decent/Average catcher with more reps. He actually is very good at throwing runners out(at least I have seen him throw out big time runners) but he does have trouble blocking pitches, (Though I think there wasn’t much he could do with the ball today) But, so did McCann, to a lesser extent.

    But, trading him, and likely losing Justin after next year…means, a very weak lineup in the future.

    Gattis in left, Peraza in CF…La Stella at 2nd…. Imagine Peraza batting leadoff, La Stella 2nd…that’s a potentially potent 1,2 punch…
    But, the braves aren’t very gutsy. Likely to try to trade BJ(and give up something good as well, cuz braves are poor/cheap) and then what? Missed all the young CF’ers that the Twins traded a few years back.

    As for Chris Johnson…I like him, in spite of his low OBP. I was able to say, who do you get to replace him that is better? Well, La Stella could go over there…and then Peraza goes to 2nd…but he is still so young, only 20…seems like the bat is there, but have no idea on the glove…V, did you say he was already considered a slick fielder???

    Like

  36. 38 Gil in Mechanicsville August 13, 2014 at 9:38 am

    After watching last night’s game, one thought keeps running through my mind..

    “Consistent adequacy often out performs occasional excellence”

    Like

  37. 39 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 9:44 am

    Josie ask me if I could make three changes in the Braves line up, what would they be?

    Gil, I think I am completely on board with each of your 3 moves, and probably in that order.

    Like

  38. 40 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 9:53 am

    V, did you say he was already considered a slick fielder???

    Slick fielder indeed. He would be a top SS prospect for us if Simba wasn’t already there. And honestly, La Stella will not block him. I like Stel, but he’s not a game changer. Peraza is a game changer.

    As for Stel at 3B, nah. He barely gets by at 2B. He’s a good bat and a great OBP, but little power and average at best fielding. You might stash him in LF, but you would lose the power you expect from a corner OF.

    Don’t get me wrong… I love Tommy La Stella. I think he is tough as nails, and the kind of player Bobby would love. And if we had power at the traditional spots – LF, RF, 1B, 3B – and speed at the traditional spots – SS, CF – then TLS would be great. (By the way, I just described the Braves of the 90’s with Mark Lemke.) But we need Peraza’s speed and bat in a bad way. He could compete for a spot in 2015, but certainly in 2016.

    I could also see TLS as part of a trade package. He won’t be the feature player, but certainly a compliment.

    Now as to Peraza as a CF, I suppose it isn’t out of the realm of possibility. But he’s already had one position change from SS to 2B. Not sure they’d change him again in successive years. But who knows..?

    Like

  39. 41 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 10:20 am

    BTW- Let’s not forget that Peraza is only 20 years old. But he is the singular point of excitement on the near horizon. Bethancourt is for real, but Peraza is exciting. RHP

    Cody Martin is also solid but not exciting. I think he’s a legitimate contender for a rotation spot next year, at least on a par with David Hale. Given that there is no guarantee at all that either Beachy or Medlen will make it back to a ML rotation, Martin has to be noted. He’s nothing exciting, as I mentioned, but just a solid strike throwing pitcher. He is alot like Kris Medlen… just gets people out. And he doesn’t walk alot. That will be his ticket to the dance. I’ve seen him pitch and think he’s the real deal. I believe he could be a 4th or 5th starter right now. I really believed that they might have found a way to stash Minor on the DL to cool his jets and to bring Cody up for a turn or 2. But I suppose Minor showed enough last night to be safe for now.

    Oh… and speaking of the DL, it’s that time of year. You know, the time of year that alot of veterans end up on the DL past Aug. 31, so that teams have more options for their post-season rosters. That should begin shortly after Aug. 17.

    Like

  40. 42 berigan2electricboogaloo August 13, 2014 at 10:27 am

    I guess I am just wondering who fills holes these trades would create? Ok, you trade La Stella and Chris Johnson…what if Peraza isn’t ready at the start of 2015? And can anyone name a better hitting 3rd baseman out there….that is either going to be a free agent, or some team is going to be willing to trade? And always remember they have to be cheap.

    Shamefully, don’t know a whole lot about the kids on the farm (though I sure have heard of some names that don’t seem to be panning out)
    Looking at the top 10 guys, looks like most are very young, or pitchers…
    http://atlanta.braves.mlb.com/mlb/prospects/watch/y2014/index.jsp?c_id=atl#list=atl

    Kyle Kubitza is number 10. 3rd baseman. 5 Homers this year,, at the age of 24. 112 strikeouts. But, a .292 BA, and a .406 OBP.

    Juan Jaime is apparently the 13th best prospect. at the tender age of 27.
    So, looks like the braves have some arms to trade, but since power hitting outfielders have all but disappeared….who do they trade them for? Or are we going to trade for another bad contract guy that has to play cuz of his big contract?

    So many questions. And, if the braves continue to collapse against the Dodgers, then the A’s and Pirates…we will have plenty of time to wonder about who might get traded 🙄

    Like

  41. 43 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 10:29 am

    This is an assessment from ESPN’s Keith Law, done at the mid-season point this year. It shows Peraza’s overall prospect ranking, and also his pre-season ranking. You’ll see how much he ha sopened some eyes, shooting from #99 to #39. Oh, and he is only 20, not 22. Here’s the assessment:

    39. Jose Peraza 2B/SS | Atlanta Braves
    Age: 22 [wrong] | Current Level: Double-A (Mississippi)
    Preseason Ranking: 99
    Atlanta slid Peraza, a natural shortstop, to second base earlier this year, probably a full season sooner than necessary. But Andrelton Simmons is an all-world defender and has the shortstop position locked down in Georgia for at least the next six years. Peraza’s now a 70 defender at short who’s also a plus runner with a compact, quick swing that produces contact without power. I’d like him more if he were a left-handed hitter who could make better use of that speed, but he’s still going to be an above-average starter in the big leagues who hits .300-plus and plays great defense.

    Like

  42. 44 berigan2electricboogaloo August 13, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Oh what the heck, gonna kept guessing at things that may or may not happen.
    Are the braves likely to re-sign Santana,? Not likely. How about Harang? He’s having his best year…well…ever, if his ERA stays this low. Plus, he’s going to be 36 next May. So, he may well be offered a 1-2 year deal for 10 Mil a season. So, he could be gone.
    That leaves Tehren, Wood, and MInor for next year, assuming he turns things around/or doesn’t get traded. Won’t those 3 guys scare the living daylights out of teams in 2015…lots of issues besides a poorly put together offense that may get worse depending on if Gattis, J UP and or La Stella get traded away..

    Like

  43. 46 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 10:51 am

    Are the braves likely to re-sign Santana,? Not likely. How about Harang?

    I cannot see the Braves getting into the bidding for Santana. He’s been great here, both as a pitcher and as a teammate, but Frank simply won’t have the $$ to do it. Now Harang might be different, depending on where the bidding goes. If we don’t re-sign him, then the “battle tested veteran” on the staff is Mike Minor. Not sure I’m comfortable with that.

    And again, both Beachy and Medlen are coming back from TJ #2. Not a boat load of optimism with either. If anything, either might make a contribution in the pen. But TJ #2 is not easy to return from. Just ask Jonny Venters.

    But looking in the crystal ball, the 2015 rotation could be Teheran, Minor, Wood, Hale and ??. Harang? Cody Martin? Unknown cheap vet of the year? Harang profiles there nicely, I think.

    I would be comfortable with

    1- Teheran RHP
    2- Wood LHP
    3- Harang RHP
    4- Minor LHP
    5- Hale/Martin RHP

    Like

  44. 47 Gil in Mechanicsville August 13, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    Isn’t it funny how a season can go? Would have thought we would be talking about Teheran and Wood being our number one and two starters?

    I say put Reraza in centerfield. Hey, it’s what the minors are for isn’t it?

    That is where I thought Fredi fell down as a manager, he did not rotate his subs enough so when he did need them, their timing was way off.

    Liked by 1 person

  45. 48 Vox O'Raison August 13, 2014 at 11:14 pm

    Came in late and missed it all. I admit I was quite nervous about checking the score. I even put it off for a while. Glad they pulled it out. First victory against the Trolley Dodgers this season. We need to make it 2 tomorrow afternoon. Early start tomorrow, Ber!!

    Like

  46. 49 berigan2electricboogaloo August 14, 2014 at 7:40 am

    Man, that’s a horrible outfield collision! I sure hope he will be ok
    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/11351123/minnesota-twins-prospect-byron-buxton-scary-outfield-collision

    Like

  47. 50 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 8:47 am

    Nasty indeed. 1st game at AA too.

    And what a weird position to be in as a baserunner on the opposing team. Dude scores from 1B as everyone else is making sure Buxton is OK after the collision. Waddaya do? I guess you gotta keep running, but somehow it just doesn’t seem right…

    Like

  48. 51 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 10:28 am

    In case you missed it, Juan Jaime was sent down to AAA after the game last night. The corresponding move was made this morning – Luis Avilan has returned. “Reports” say he has been solid at AAA although his stats do not necessarily back up the claim. I suppose we’ll see. As we noted before and after the deadline day trade, James Russell is not a “lefty specialist” given that his splits are basically opposite those of most LHRP. (It should be noted that I lauded the trade because of the inclusion of Bonifacio. The jury is still out on him, too.)

    All that said, we really need Avilan to step up and be the Avilan of 2012-2013. Gotta have it.

    Like

  49. 52 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 10:32 am

    2day’s lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- Boni, CF
    3- Freeman, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- TLS, 2B
    7- Simba, SS
    8- Laird, C
    9- A-a-ron Harang, RHP

    That’s an interesting 1-2 punch at the top. I gotta say, I like it. I like it alot. With the exception of Gatt not being in the lineup , this may be my favorite Fredi’s done. And if Gatt was batting 5th behind JUp, it would definitely be my fave.

    Like

  50. 54 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Speaking of Eddie Perez, I would like to see him as the bench coach on Manager Terry Pendelton’s staff. 😉

    Like

  51. 55 berigan2electricboogaloo August 14, 2014 at 11:40 am

    I too left a resturant with game 2-2, and expected the Dodgers to win, so quite pleased to see it was 3-2 braves…
    JHey leading off? I don’t know..I guess that’s FG’s problem too. .254 batting leadoff, .292 batting 5th. But, he’s 4 for 22, and has , after a brief warm spell (and DOB touting him as the player we all thought he would be, just without power) 4 for 22, and is back to being a singles hitter again. So…leadoff makes some sense. I would rather Boni bat 1st and JHey 2nd, but, oh well…

    Like

  52. 56 berigan2electricboogaloo August 14, 2014 at 11:41 am

    hey, did you know JHey was 4 for 22 of late? Did ya know I only slept 3 hours,? 😕 Did ya know I will likely miss the game then? If I miss all of it, the braves should win 8 to 2, so I am good with that! 🙂

    Like

  53. 57 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    Grr… BJ up to bat with 2 out in the bottom of the 9th, tying run on 3B, go ahead run on 2B…

    Strike out… 😡

    Like

  54. 58 berigan2electricboogaloo August 14, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    Hey….they were supposed to win…I slept thru it all….well, they scored….4 :/

    Like

  55. 59 Vox O'Raison August 14, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    Sorry… my bad. I missed the 6th run scored by LA. Tying run left on 2B by BJ. Like it makes a difference… 🙄

    Like

  56. 60 berigan2electricboogaloo August 14, 2014 at 10:52 pm

    Marlins, after walk off win 1 game behind braves

    Like

  57. 62 Gil in Mechanicsville August 15, 2014 at 1:31 pm

    I missed yesterday’s game because despite the thought that yesterday might be a good candidate as a get-a-way game, I was on the road myself. Oh well, no great loss, at least I did not get upset for wasting 3 hours of my life I would never get back….

    Ber, I said last season that I thought Melvin would be the Braves’ version of Jason Bay. My feeling is Frank Wren is sweating this one. he was the guy who made the deal….

    IT”S ALL JOSIES’ FAULT. She said when they released Dan, they would start losing…. Put the curse on them she did…. Hey, I am just reporting, not like I said it, I’m just the messenger.

    So, tonight is Zombie Night at the Ted… How appropriate!

    Liked by 1 person

  58. 64 Gil in Mechanicsville August 15, 2014 at 9:05 pm

    Still early (top of fifth) but Braves leading 5-2 on a barrage of homers. Maybe they should have Zombie night more often…

    Liked by 1 person

  59. 65 berigan2electricboogaloo August 16, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    Man, forgot about the game, flipped over and it was long over…4 homers? Amazing!

    Like

  60. 66 Vox O'Raison August 16, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    … and an early lead too. Will miracles never cease?

    Like

  61. 67 Gil in Mechanicsville August 16, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    Ber, what will be more amazing is if they can keep it up. A couple of tough customers ahead with Gray and Lester on the mound. I am not too reassure with Mike Minor facing John Lester Sunday night but stranger things have happened. Would not out any money on the Braves to win that one however….

    Goslin looked really good playing short stop last night. Just the kind of spark the Braves need right now. Methinks the Braves have found their new super-sub. Reminds me a bit of Mark DeRosa. Can play a lot of positions and has some pop in his bat, makes contact a lot so a go hit and run candidate…. Good kid to bat second. I would seriously consider giving him more playing time if I were Fredi G.

    Like

  62. 68 berigan2electricboogaloo August 16, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    BJ almost made the catch of the year, perhaps the decade…almost….was way above the fence but glove was slightly out of position.No way to leap, reach and move arm back to the left…amazed he could even get that close to the homer by Vogt…

    Like

  63. 69 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 7:52 am

    Yes, pretty impressive but no cigar… Still say he has eyesight problems but we are stuck with him so may as well root for him….

    I thought Sogard made the defensive play of the game at short last night against Simba…

    Good win for the Bravos though, reverses an ugly trend of late…

    Like

  64. 70 berigan2electricboogaloo August 17, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    Gil, don’t know that I have ever seen a more streaky team than this one. And, it’s not like you can blame injuries(well, a bit in the bullpen) Teams like the Mariners probably think we are no good(swept us twice in 2 game series) while the Angels and A’s must think we are a very good team.
    Yet, no one has really carried the offense for a week or two…FF has been getting hot of late…just can’t figure out this team…at least they aren’t quitting…I really though the A’s coming to town was going to be the final nails in the coffin of 2014. Fortuneately, they have really struggled after trading their cleanup hitter away. Now they are out of 1st place for the first time all year.
    Can you imagine , a great team(best record in baseball til a few weeks ago) trades to get one of the best starters in all of baseball(and probably the one with the best track record in the playoffs, still playing) and somehow doesn’t make the playoffs? You never know..
    Oh, CL braves on espn tonight at 8 pm

    Like

  65. 71 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 2:16 pm

    Yep, one would have to wonder what would happen if the Braves were to trade away Freddie Freeman? It would be ugly… Still, The As were due for a course correction.

    Kind of the same thing with the Braves, they really have too good a team to fall that flat, some really odd happenings which only go to show how close a team can be between a a hero or zero….

    Now, to really feel good, the Braves need for Mike Minor to man up and beat Lester. I know… but it could happen…

    Like

  66. 72 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    Maybe the real difference was the arrival of Mark DeRosa Phil Gosselin. I like your suggestion Ber but likely we will see Boni get the start in CF.

    Like

  67. 73 Vox O'Raison August 17, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Apparently Fredi really has a liking for Goose also…

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- “Goose” Gosselin, 2B
    3- Freddie, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- Gatt, C
    7- Simba, SS
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Mike Minor, LHP

    Man, oh man, do we need Mikey to step up tonight. His last outing was decent; showed real progress. He needs to put it back together tonight.

    Like

  68. 74 Vox O'Raison August 17, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha 😆

    Like

  69. 75 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    No, but he has played somewhere in the outfield and there are two other guys who can be moved…

    Like

  70. 76 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Prado was playing second for the Yankees today.

    Like

  71. 77 Gil in Mechanicsville August 17, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    Ex Braves just about everywhere.

    Like

  72. 78 Gil in Mechanicsville August 18, 2014 at 8:28 am

    Woo hoo, ESPU with a little egg on their face. Guess we can’t write off the Braves quite yet?

    Like

  73. 79 berigan2electricboogaloo August 18, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    nope! excellent series sweep!

    Like

  74. 80 Gil in Mechanicsville August 18, 2014 at 2:27 pm

    The last three games, looks like the Braves reached their potential….

    Like

  75. 81 Vox O'Raison August 18, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1 JHey, RF
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Fred, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- TLS, 2B
    7- Laird, C
    8- Boni, CF
    9- Ervin “Magic” Santana, RHP

    Today is Evan Gattis’ birthday. He is celebrating it on the bench. Are we still trying to keep him fresh for later in the season? I bet he’ll be just like a daisy in November. 🙄

    Like

  76. 82 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2014 at 10:39 am

    LOL Raisins… I’ll bet he really wishes he had been able to take a few hacks at Worley in the first inning…

    Okay, it was not the prettiest game but I’ll take it. Santana looked off but the Pirates played like the “Bad News Bears” in the field. Tough on a pitcher when you don’t have confidence in the guys behind you to make the plays.

    I switched over to the gNats and DBacks game in their eleventh inning. When the DBs failed to score after loading the bases with no outs, I knew they were done. Did not see LaRoache hit his walk off dinger because I knew Zona had lost it in when they failed to score.

    Lots of games left. Going to to be a nail biting kind of September methinks…. Only think we can hope for is the Braves to go on a couple of their long win streaks….

    Like

  77. 83 Vox O'Raison August 19, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Santana looked off…

    He was, and he said so in post-game interviews. It was a very candid response actually. He said none of his pitches were working, but that the big lead in the 1st gave him the ability to battle. He called it one of the best games he’s pitched because of the fact that none of his pitches were “on”. If you could hear the whole interview, it might give you a new respect for him. It did for me. In a nutshell, he wasn’t concerned about the 3 solo HR’s, nor the fact that he gave up 3 earned runs. Said he knew they wouldn’t hurt and that the important thing was to get the W for the team. I truly believe that was sincere, too. That’s the kind of guy our youngsters need to see. Makes me wish we could keep him around longer.

    Like

  78. 84 berigan2electricboogaloo August 19, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    You guys might have given up on the braves, but not me! :mrgreen:

    Like

  79. 85 Vox O'Raison August 19, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- Goose, 2B
    3- Fredster 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- Gatt, C
    7- Simba, SS
    8- BJ, CF
    9- A-a-ron Harang, RHP

    Like

  80. 86 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    Haven’t given up Ber, just not real sure of the final outcome… SIGH! I guess that is why they play the games.AND SELL BEER….

    Like

  81. 87 Gil in Mechanicsville August 19, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    Tough picking between Gosselin and LaStella… both are nice pieces. Not superstars but nice ballplayers…

    Like

  82. 88 Vox O'Raison August 19, 2014 at 10:41 pm

    Like

  83. 89 Vox O'Raison August 19, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Like

  84. 90 Vox O'Raison August 19, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    Scalded…

    Like

  85. 91 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 7:54 am

    Nice to see this team on a roll. It’s also nice to see what they can do when all cylinders are clicking. This is the team we have been waiting for…

    Like

  86. 92 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 10:08 am

    MLBTR: It was unthinkable just months ago, but Yankees catcher Brian McCann couldn’t be given away for free right now, writes Mike Petriello of Fangraphs. It’s unknown whether McCann has been placed on waivers, but no team would risk putting in a claim on him and getting stuck with his $17MM annual salary, Petriello opines. So far this year, McCann has a .235/.291/.380 slash line.

    Ouch!!

    Like

  87. 93 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 10:32 am

    To go with Mac’s .235/.291/.380 slash line, he has 14 HR and 51 RBI in 94 starts.

    For anyone wondering, Evan Gattis is slashing .277/.330/.516 with 19 HR and 48 RBI in just 78 starts. Way to go, kid. Tough shoes to fill, and you have done it marvelously.

    Like

  88. 94 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Gil, I was kidding of course…no one has dumped for…dirt on this team than me. Not only had I put the final nails in the coffin, I had placed them in he ground, and patted the earth flat over them. I am truly shocked, in a very pleasant way withe team play of late.
    Like V, said, we are finally seeing the team fire on all cylinders, and showing what they are capable of. Even BJ is hitting the ball a bit more solidly of late, outs included(Of course this may be that strange voodoo he is able to use, where everyone thinks he’s turned the corner, then a week later he’s still hitting .212 )
    I really think J UP and FF getting hot around the same time has turned the season around.That, and after a terrible road trip, seeing they still had the Nat’s number….
    Doesn’t hurt they have capitalized on beating up on two teams that were very hot til late(A’s and Pirates) now on losing streaks.

    Like

  89. 95 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 11:01 am

    no one has dumped more dirt…is supposed to be what the fingers typed…. sigh….

    Like

  90. 96 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 11:23 am

    V, I just clicked on that link from MLB trade rumors , that led to fangraphs…have to say, never have been a fan of fangraphs… all it took was some moron stat head (who was that guy on the ajc that everyone argued with?) that somehow tried to compare Babe Ruth the pitcher, to present day pitchers, and how he likely would be just mediocre..cuz stats. No footage exists of him pitching, in the dead ball era…but somehow, he knew he wouldn’t be that good…anyways…getting off topic a bit.( I never do that 🙄 )
    phone call…to be continued….

    Like

  91. 97 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 11:31 am

    Not a fan of Fangraphs either, and for the same reasons. Too much belief in the “advanced metrics”. IMO, those “advanced” stats are just more self-invented ways for the basement dwelling number-crunchers to justify their piety and almost religious reliance on concept and idea. Reality takes a back seat. Kinda like Congress, except different. (Not really that much different.)

    Like

  92. 98 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    If the Yankees were footing the bill, their are 29 other teams that would snatch up BMac off waivers… Just saying…. I wonder what they would be saying if they (the Yankees) had Melvin patrolling centerfield?

    That was a mammo shot for sure last night by Evan. Still, only one run but his bat is heating up again. Official distance was 415 feet but that bad boy hit the stairwell four tiers up. Only thing that stopped it was a steel I-beam…. It reminded me of the tater Andruw Jones hit in San Diago off the Western Metal Supply facade four tiers up…

    Harrang was very Maduxese last night. The old, I’ll let you hit it but not on the sweet spot kind of game. Even Ms Josie was impressed and folks, that is hard to do…..

    Got to keep rolling because the gNats have got their groove on… Goes to show how one bad streak can mess up your season but a course correction is predicted for the Washingtonians…

    The Braves are catching the Pirates and a good time. Maybe the Braves really are this good… Who knows? Let’s just ride the wave as long as we can….

    And what can we do about stopping Simba swinging out of his shoes? The boy is going to seriously hurt himself. He is never going to hit one as far as Gattis no mater how hard he swings. It is all about balance… Ask any golfer worth his salt…. Over swinging causes one to lose their balance and (pick one) top the ball, miss, hook, slice, hit the ball fat, slim and otherwise screw up your head…. Like Jordan Schafer, hitting a home run will mess him up for weeks…..

    Like

  93. 99 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    V, very well put 🙂

    Like

  94. 100 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    Drive for show, putt for dough… True in golf, true in baseball…. Then again, maybe he likes batting eight in the order because that over swinging will certainly cause him to be planted in that spot, except of course when Melvin is in the line up, but you all know…. 🙂

    Like

  95. 101 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- Simba, SS (sore hip and all)
    3- Freddie, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- Gatt, C
    7- Stella (… spoken in the whispery voice of Marlon Brando), 2B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Woody, RHP (9-9, 3.07 ERA overall; 2-1, 1.86 ERA in Aug.)

    Like

  96. 102 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    Raisins, the only different in the fangraph devotes and political wonks are the stats sheets they are perusing….

    Like

  97. 103 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    9- Woody, RHP (9-9, 3.07 ERA overall; 2-1, 1.86 ERA in Aug.)

    Did he switch hands????

    Like

  98. 104 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    I know he bats right but that is a whole nother topic.

    Like

  99. 105 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    Doh!! ^^’

    9- Woody, RHP LHP (9-9, 3.07 ERA overall; 2-1, 1.86 ERA in Aug.)

    Like

  100. 106 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    Uh… RHP stands for Really Happy Pitcher. Yeah, that’s the ticket… 😳

    Like

  101. 107 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    🙂

    Like

  102. 108 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    I think I need a 🌯 O_o

    Like

  103. 109 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    I guess what got me is that in the first year of a long contract, the Yankees would try to get rid of him(but couldn’t if they wanted to)…why? do they have a stud catcher in the wings? Don’t think so…they traded their stud can’t miss catcher to the Mariners…so far…he’s missed.

    from fangraphs… And it’s not all bad, of course, because McCann is still viewed as a positive pitch framer, and that’s not without value.
    Can’t find (create-yet) a stat on a catcher and how they work with a pitching staff…so that’s not mentioned.

    So McCann, 14, 51 .236
    Beltran, 14, 45, 233
    Teixeira 21 53 .235

    So, a guy , first year in new league, new rotation to learn..is 2 RBI’s away from tying the club lead in RBI’s . is some sort of colossal failure? And he writes this just as he comes off the Concussion DL…odd.

    Like

  104. 110 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    See, we do pay attention to details around here, it’s just that a lot of times we just don’t care…. 🙂

    Like

  105. 111 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    Speaking of lineups (attempting to draw attention away from the gaffe), why is Gatt batting 6th behind Chris Johnson, and not the other way around? I do not get that…

    Like

  106. 112 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    Ber, they are Yankee fans, that is all that needs to be said…. Anyone who does not hitt .325 and belts at least 60 homeruns is deemed a failure.

    Just wait until A-Roid comes back sans the Kick-A-Poo Joy Juice and let’s see how he does….. LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!

    Like

  107. 113 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    Well, Gattis needs somebody on base to drive in. Not sure it woks the other way around…. CJ is a good contact hitter, not sure if he really protects Justin but you have to know Gatt protects somebody and opposing pitchers loath to throw Gattis a fast ball anyway…

    Like

  108. 114 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:48 pm

    Speaking of which…. Seems to me, Gio Gonzalas is not near the pitcher he was when his dad was a patient of the anti aging clinic in Miami… Just saying….

    Like

  109. 115 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 3:48 pm

    Man, we made a lot of posts in a short period of time!
    I really like Stellaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa (Pretty funny V 😉 ) and Gosselin has played very well…IF BJ keeps hitting…great…but…if the team is going to make the playoffs, and have a chance in the playoffs…you need 8 actual, real hitters…LaStella actually has hit lefties just fine…splitting time with him and Gosselin , doesn’t really make sense…oh well…not the biggest issue in the world.
    The Broadcasters were getting on Simmons for swinging so impossibly hard even with 2 strikes….6 homers…17 last year…I am sure he thought he would have 25 this year…but he won’t….

    Like

  110. 117 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    I’m a little disappointed in Pena’s performance so far this season but I am inclined to think that is from lack of reps due to long stretched on the bench.

    Got to play him to keep him sharp. Same with Doumit… The guy struggles as just a bat once a week. Becomes a self fulfilling prophecy of failure…

    Like

  111. 118 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    Yes CL, it is safe to read the papers again….

    Like

  112. 119 berigan2electricboogaloo August 20, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Gil, it is funny that Gio ain’t what he used to be, ain’t it? Throws hard still…but he was unhittable with the A’s,
    A-Rod, highest paid pinch hitter ever?

    Like

  113. 120 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    I like LaStella, he, Kelly Johnson and Gosselin have all now dropped pop-ups to short right field. None quite so devastating as Kelly’s but all drops just the same. I guess it depends on how much good will you have built up before you are vilified by the masses…

    I am thinking Gosselin is the better all around player right now. At least he does not try to hit home runs. His just happened. he seems pretty content with just making contact. LaStella has warning track power, he needs to stay within himself. I hate it when he upper cuts the ball…. Level swing plane son, level swing plane…

    Like

  114. 121 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    but I am inclined to think that is from lack of reps due to long stretched on the bench

    Mmmmm…. I don’t know. I kinda think he is what he is. It’s not just rust, he’s simply not the player he was before the shoulder injury. And if you’ll recall, it was deemed “significant” damage to the labrum on the back side of the shoulder. Methinks it is having long-lasting effects even post-surgery. After all, they can’t really fix anything, they just remove the frayed parts.

    As for Doumit, well he just plain sux at the plate. Whatever the reason, he isn’t producing and certainly isn’t worth the $3.5M he’s getting for his 24 H and 14 RBI. The only saving grace is that Sean Gilmartin isn’t exactly having a Cy Young year at Minnie’s AAA affiliate. But the truth is Doumit’s real value to the team is that he can catch in an emergency, allowing Fredi to PH Gattis or Laird in late game situations. Kind of expensive insurance, if you ask me. But nobody did. Maybe Joey Terdo should ask to catch in a Winter League somewhere. He’s younger, alot cheaper, and has a better bat.

    And despite the high profile misery of BJ, the Braves bench has let them down countless times this season, failing horribly too often in close games. Boni has helped a little, but we still don’t have the kind of bench threat that we’ve had in many seasons past.

    Like

  115. 122 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    I have to laugh when the owners bitch and moan about a players’ salaries like the player held a gun to their heads and said “here, sign this”!

    It is payback for all those years on the buses beating the bushes in A and AA ball. and it is not like the owners are not still managing to make a fist full of money on TV contracts and the like.

    And for every George Stienbrenner, you have a Jeffery Loria… So let the smartest GM in the room make all the right moves and hopes he doesn’t screw up the team chemistry by trading away the next Cy Young or his best hitter…. After all, even if your staff has a team ERA of 3.00, you better be able to score 4…

    Like

  116. 123 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Doumit will be one and done. next season, Bethancourt will split time with Gattis and I would not be surprised at all if Terdo doesn’t follow your advice. hey, couldn’t David Carpenter sub behind the plate in an emergency?

    The Braves’ payroll will not be any smaller next season. May as well get the most out of who they have.

    Like

  117. 124 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    You are probably right about Pena VOX. Would be nice to be able to afford a guy like Prado or Infante’ but the game moves on. Time is fun when you are shagging flies.

    Like

  118. 125 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 4:43 pm

    Would be nice to be able to afford a guy like Prado or Infante’ but the game moves on.

    I kinda see Gosselin taking over that role, with TLS getting the majority of 2B playing time… in 2015. Jose Peraza will take that position in 2016 and not look back.

    Like

  119. 126 Vox O'Raison August 20, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    And speaking of both Peraza and Bethancourt, each is currently on the DL. Peraza has a left groin strain; Bethancourt has a left hand contusion. Hopefully the 2 injuries are not related… 😮

    Liked by 1 person

  120. 127 Gil in Mechanicsville August 20, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    You are a baaadddd man Raisins…. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  121. 128 Gil in Mechanicsville August 21, 2014 at 10:18 am

    Okay, the party is over, time to start a new streak.

    Still believe that game should have been won… Play in the outfield should have been made…

    Like

  122. 129 Gil in Mechanicsville August 21, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    Looks like the Braves are continuing with their new found scoring spree.

    Like

  123. 130 berigan2electricboogaloo August 21, 2014 at 10:41 pm

    new streak!
    hey check out this clip, a true blast from the past

    Liked by 2 people

  124. 131 Vox O'Raison August 22, 2014 at 7:38 am

    What a wonderful clip, Ber. Really brought back a flood of memories. Every time I watch the Braves on a national broadcast, I am more and more thankful for our local team of broadcasters; yet the current crop – for however good they may be – cannot compare to the great Skip, Pete and Ernie. I will include Joe Simpson, who was the perfect partner for Skip.

    As for the current guys, well of course Joe… And I believe Chip has improved light years from his first couple of years here. They do a great job on TV. They make the national goons sound like… well, goons.

    On radio, Don is Don. He is still the king of cliches, and cannot emphasize the correct number when the score changes to save his life. That leaves Jim Powell, whom I really enjoy hearing on the radio. He actually reminds me alot of Pete. In fact, I often wish Don would just shut up and let Jim back on the mic. For the life of me, I cannot understand why the radio goobs tuck Jim away at times, letting Don bloviate for innings at a stretch. Typically, Jim does play-by-play for a few innings with Don doing the color analysis. That’s Don’s wheelhouse. He’s good at that. That is the correct recipe. But then the powers that be will switch Don to pbp, where he prattles on, and regurgitates the same cliches over and over, and covers the color commentary at the same time. Jim can’t get a word in edgewise. Not my favorite. When Don invariably announces “And here’s Jim Powell to take us the rest of the way home,” I exhale and relax again. Don is fine as the analyst as he is a connection to the old guard, and he is very knowledgeable. I especially like hearing him analyze what a pitcher is or is not doing. But they should keep him away from the pbp. Excruciating. And Jim is very good… too good to sit idly by during Don’s blathering.

    Liked by 1 person

  125. 132 Gil in Mechanicsville August 22, 2014 at 9:15 am

    Thanks for refreshing some fond memories Ber, really glad you did not include Jim Varney doing the NA… 🙂

    VOX, Listening to the/a ballgame on the radio is something of a bygone era. I can still remember sitting with my brother and my father in my dad’s car while parked in the driveway,listening on the car’s to the local triple A club’s games. The Richmond Vees and later the Braves when the Atlanta franchise moved to RVA from Atlanta. During the 90s, the Braves major league games were also broadcast.

    I also remember listening via a six transistor radio with an ear bud to the World Series games while in study hall. Those bygone days before the big money from TV and cable took hold… I still miss Skip and Pete. What a great duo.

    Now more recent history… Woo-hoo, how much more fun is this? While I am pretty sure the gNats will lose again at some point, it could be worse. At least the Braves are keeping pace. The Giants face off against the gNats in Washington tonight with our old friend, Tim Hudson, facing off against Doug Fiester. Only answer is for the Braves to just keep winning, they will gain ground on somebody…

    Like

  126. 134 Carolina Lady August 22, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    Great video, Ber. How I miss those guys and those days. Skip’s birthday was August 12.
    Pete’s farewell to Skip:

    Liked by 1 person

  127. 135 berigan2electricboogaloo August 22, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    CL, happened to see that clip too, a fine tribute. Couldn’t get over the clip I found, the quality of it! Like someone in the studio made a master tape of it. Would love to see more…I see the trade was made in march of 1997 …man, the homeboy upstairs had more wins than losses with trades, but Marquis Grissom and David Justice, for a left handed reliever, and Kenny Lofton? Lofton left after one year, as he was a free agent. terrible, terrible trade. Didn’t recall Grissom hit .308 in 1996, and .444 in the W.S. that year.
    Anyway…sidetracked myself. I am sure I wouldn’t have become a braves fan without listening to Skip and Pete on TBS in Jacksonville. Why watch a last place team, that isn’t even your hometown team? They were excellent reasons to…and Murphy, and Horner 😉
    One can go overboard on nostalgia, but man…it’s a shame for so many reasons when folks that become part of our lives die…I LOVED listening to Harry Carey do Cubs games. He was a homer, and also told you the way things were, no sugar coating (He’s the man that said of Dick Allen 1,000,000 talent, 50 cent brain., boy he’d be called a racist if he were alive and said that about someone today!)..now…he’s the guy who is mocked, sounding drunk in impressions by folks like WiIl Farrell…and it’s just a bit sad to me that a lot of folks won’t know how good Skip and Pete were, in 10-20 years….

    Liked by 1 person

  128. 136 berigan2electricboogaloo August 22, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    And CL, thanks for that article too! Had no idea Santana had helped Minor…V was already mentioning it was too bad we would lose him next year…well, perhaps it would make more sense to go after him, than Harang…I know, Harang will be a lot cheaper, still…find a sucker…err, a team to take on BJ(heres to him bringing his BA up to .225 and hitting 10 homers in the next 5 weeks to entice someone) and just have to pay 10 of his 15 mil a year to play elsewhere…and perhaps, just perhaps the braves can re-sign him….

    Liked by 1 person

  129. 138 Gil in Mechanicsville August 23, 2014 at 8:09 am

    There was “Magic” in the air last night for Mike Minor, hurling a no-hitter for 6 &2/3 innings, only to be done in by a lead-off walk and bleeder over second base… He pitched well enough to ear the respect from the Red’s fans. You kept waiting t=for the blast to occur but it never came against Minor last night. Hat’s off to Santana for getting him turned around, might have even helped Satana too. Often does by reminding the tutor of what he is supposed to be doing.

    The big blast did happen however, only it was the suddenly all world Justin Upton providing the detonation in the 12th with a 415 foot shot to left… Pretty intense game because I kept waiting for Mike to stumble but he never did. Going to be fun watching to see if this Mike Minor can continue…. Now, if we can just get Melvin to take hitting tips from Gosselin….

    Liked by 2 people

  130. 139 Gil in Mechanicsville August 23, 2014 at 6:01 pm

    Good news/Bad news Good news, Giants are losing, Bad news, Washington is winning…

    Like

  131. 141 Vox O'Raison August 23, 2014 at 10:31 pm

    Bob Nightengale, USA Today Sports: Whispers are getting louder in baseball circles that if the Atlanta Braves miss the playoffs, it could result in a front-office shakeup involving GM Frank Wren and perhaps even manager Fredi Gonzalez.

    Braves CEO Terry McGuirk, in a lengthy interview with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, did not offer any votes of confidence, saying only that they are accountable for the team’s performance.

    Liked by 1 person

  132. 143 berigan2electricboogaloo August 23, 2014 at 11:02 pm

    Gil, you were right about last night, Minor looked great! What a turnaround, after looking like a total loss before these 3 very good starts.
    I was about to send everyone a message via facebook to put the game on last night, if you didn’t have it on already. Was Merker really the last brave to toss a no-no?
    Another very well pitched game tonight to…really impressed with Mike Leak. And it’s funny, but the reds commentators (well, Thom Brennaman, remember him doing Cubs games in the 90s, and MLB tv folks Harold Reynolds and Tom Verducci) were saying how when everyone is healthy, he would basically be their 5th starter next year, and would get a lot of moola for a 5th starter…we would be glad to take him off their hands! 😉

    Like

  133. 144 Gil in Mechanicsville August 24, 2014 at 10:17 am

    Yep, this is Frank Wren’s ensemble, for better or worse and a reminder, everyone has a boss. Very spotty team… An understatement…

    One to nothing loss… ACK!

    Another great pitching performance wasted….

    So, does Frank and Freddi have to take BJ with them? If Melvin is still around, nothing changes….

    Liked by 1 person

  134. 145 berigan2electricboogaloo August 24, 2014 at 1:24 pm

    Wren’s signing Uggla at the time, that made sense…got 2 decent(looking back) years…but BJ…never made sense. Last 4 years in Tampa, on turf…never hit higher than .246.that deserved 5 years, 15 mil per year? I am sure , if nothing else, Wren thought he would hit at least 20 HR’s a year, if nothing else…but not even half of that…so far.
    I thought about this a few weeks ago..You know who the braves should have signed instead of BJ? The thinkin’ man’s Frenchy….Hunter Pence. What? Him? Yep…him…remember that he was traded by the Phil to the Giants in 2012? drove in 45 runs in 59 games, only hit .219. Now…can you imagine the braves getting someone at the trade deadline…becoming a team leader, a motivational speaker…during the playoffs? Well…he did…
    from wiki…
    On October 10, 2012 in Game 3 of the NLDS, the Giants were down 2–0 and facing elimination against the Cincinnati Reds. Pence gave his teammates a passionate pregame speech in the dugout shortly before the first pitch.[21] The Giants ended up beating the Cincinnati Reds in 3 straight games to advance to the NLCS. His inspirational speeches have been credited by his teammates as helping them rally together during the Giants’ postseason and to eventually win the 2012 World Series.[22][23] His speeches have also become the source of good-natured ribbing between Giants teammates.[24]
    Is BJ the kind of player do to this? But, BJ is younger by 2 years, and faster…and gets 3 mil less a year. So, there’s that… 😕

    Like

  135. 146 berigan2electricboogaloo August 24, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    Or…the braves could have signed Yasiel Puig, ($42 Mil contract) Yoenis Cespedes ($36 Mil contract) or the AL’s leading HR leader, Jose Abreu ($68 Mil) but, those deals can be…risky Who knows if those guys will make it….

    Like

  136. 147 berigan2electricboogaloo August 24, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    why yes I am watching old baseball tonights from earlier in the week, instead of the game…D’Oh!

    Like

  137. 148 Gil in Mechanicsville August 24, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    May as well Ber, the game is not that much fun to watch unless you are a Reds’ fan…

    Like

  138. 149 Vox O'Raison August 25, 2014 at 8:57 am

    After 131 games, [this] pretty much describes these Braves: They’re not bad enough to discount altogether, but they’re not quite good enough to inspire complete confidence in anyone, from Frank Wren on down. – Mark Bradley, ajc

    Sums it up very well.

    Nice opine by the aforementioned Mr. Bradley: http://markbradley.blog.ajc.com/2014/08/25/good-news-the-tough-part-is-behind-the-braves/?ecmp=ajc_social_twitter_2014_braves_sfp

    Like

  139. 150 berigan2electricboogaloo August 26, 2014 at 12:37 am

    Schafer update… 16 for 53 (.302 BA) .403 OBP. 8 out of 9 stolen bases. 5 RBI’s
    Hmmm almost seems as if playing time has caused him to hit…

    Emilio Bonifacio
    13 for 51, (255 BA) .296 OBP, 3 out of 5 Stolen bases. 0 RBI’s

    Like

  140. 151 Gil in Mechanicsville August 26, 2014 at 9:54 am

    So, Jordan, what do you attribute your turn around to? New hitting coach, new field, playing time, manager?

    Like

  141. 152 Vox O'Raison August 26, 2014 at 10:53 am

    Likely starting 17 out of 18 games for the Twinks is a direct cause. But who was he going to start over in ATL? JUp? Nope. Heyward? Don’t think so. BJ? I can give you 13,450,000 reasons why not. We can debate the merits of playing or benching a $13M+ player all day long, but in the end the heavy investment is going to get the playing time. He just is.

    And Schafer was not very good off the bench. But neither has Doumit been. It’s a good lesson for kids… learn to catch. Ryan Doumit and Corky Miller are perfect examples at the dearth of Major League catching talent.

    As for Bonifacio, I hailed that trade at the time for the inclusion of Bonifacio with James Russell. But after the dust settled, and the ration and logic crept back in, it really was not a good trade for the Braves. We needed a good lefty specialist, and only got a LHRP that gets righties out better than lefties. We still suck against tough lefties late in games. Boni has been pretty much what I thought he might be, but interestingly, Phil Gosselin has also been that good. Kinda diminishes what Boni brings to the team. So in hindsight, I’d have rather kept the good hitting prospect Victor Caratini and left Russell and Boni in Chi-town.

    We really needed power for our bench, not another “super-sub” kind of guy. We have more than 1 of those already. Probably could have gotten Josh Willingham from the Twinks straight up for Schafer. Willingham has 4 HR’s for KC in August.

    Not getting that sorely needed tough loogy and power off the bench will be the biggest reasons we don’t reach our goals in 2014. Just look at the number of 1-run games we’ve lost. Case closed.

    Like

  142. 153 Gil in Mechanicsville August 26, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    Raisins, the up side to Boni and Russel is the Cubs footing the bill. There are some players who benefit from playing everyday and others that don’t. Russel is actually a good seventh inning guy, just not a lefty specialist which the Braves need.

    Oh well, it is near the end of the 2014 season for the Braves. They are still building. Going to be tougher next season though. Miami will be better. Washington will hold serve. Mets will be better.

    The Braves aren’t done yet, just that they met what would be reasonable expectations.

    Look for the team to be under new management next season…. Note, I did not say new ownership…

    Like

  143. 154 Vox O'Raison August 26, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Mr. O’B: The Braves will try to trade Upton this offseason – personally, I think it’s just about a fait accompli that he’s gone before spring training – and that they might do it by including Minor in a package. In other words, they’d tell a team, you can have three years of contractual control of Minor before free agency, but you’re going to have to take B.J. Upton in the deal.
    The Braves would surely have to take back a bad contract such as [the Cubs’ Edwin] Jackson in such an exchange, but Atlanta would also probably ask that a decent prospect be included from the other team.

    Like

  144. 155 Vox O'Raison August 26, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    More Mr. O’B: So, what does the future hold for El Oso Blanco? As much as a lot of Braves fans don’t want to hear it, there’s at least a pretty good chance he could be traded this winter.
    It’s not that the Braves don’t love his big-power bat, because they do. It’s that they have young, cannon-armed Christian Bethancourt waiting in the wings, ready to shut down opponents’ running games and play superb defense, two areas that are not Gattis’ strong suits. And they’re not sure how long Gattis’ 250-pound body can hold up to the rigors of catching.
    … he’s got American League written all over him. He could be a primary DH and part-time catcher in the AL and hit 35-40 homers in 500-600 at-bats. And the Braves should be able to get a relative king’s ransom for him in a trade, more than they’ve gotten back for any player in quite some time.

    Like

  145. 156 berigan2electricboogaloo August 26, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    So…because Wren made a terrible signing, you have to give up another player to sweeten the deal, then take back a bad contract. Makes sense. 😕
    And the cubs, while terrible now, have a TON of prospects, can’t imagine why they would want to waste CF on BJ.
    By the by, Edwin Jackson’s ERA? 6.09. 4.98 in 2013.
    Still a hole in CF then. Unless Heyward goes there. Then hole in RF. So, then you trade Gattis, another hole in sketchy lineup.
    Bethancourt is a better overall catcher, true. Gattis still hasn’t caught 130 game in the Majors, and I have seen improvement. I think his 22% CS rate is a bit misleading, as I have seen him throw out the best of the best stealers. We all know Bethancourt has a cannon, but still, 6 out of 7 basestealers stole against him(more likely the pitchers)
    What is Bethancourt’s ceiling as a hitter? He has a sub .300 OBP and 7 HR’s in 337 AB’s in AAA. Guessing 2015, offense would be weaker…against teams like the Marlins, Mets and Nats getting better.
    I guess the “King’s Randsom” would be the deciding factor…thing is, everything I hear is that there are few power hitting outfielders out there anywhere…so, do you trade Gattis for….another starter? Padres can tell ya how it’s great to have a low starter’s ERA, but without an offense…it really doesn’t matter.

    Like

  146. 157 berigan2electricboogaloo August 26, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    see? Why would anyone want to break up an offense that has scored 5 runs in 3 games? 😛

    Like

  147. 158 Vox O'Raison August 27, 2014 at 7:25 am

    Meh…

    Like

  148. 159 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 7:40 am

    Simba never ceases to amaze…

    Like

  149. 160 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2014 at 9:09 am

    I still say Gattis could play left field as well as Holiday. First as well as Adam Dunn.

    Yes, VOX, heck of a play by Simba, saved the game if you ask me.

    Like

  150. 161 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    Perhaps, Gil, but if the “kings ransom” assessment is accurate, I’d have to do it. Especially if I’m going to have to give up talent to shed BJ’s contract.

    But I’ll tell ya, the biggest issue Frank faces isn’t getting much pub. Both JHey and JUp will be heading into the final year of their respective contracts in 2015. And realistically, the Braves cannot keep both. Will Frank try to lock up one of them prior to a “lame duck” season, or will he let it ride? Which one does he try to keep? Does he try to work a trade for one over the offseason so as to maximize the return for losing one?

    This coming offseason promises to be one of the most interesting in many, many years…

    Like

  151. 162 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    Man how I wish we could give BJ’s money to JHey…

    Liked by 1 person

  152. 163 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    For those keeping score on Tommy La Stella…

    AVG by month:
    May (only 4 games) – .333
    June – .276
    July – .309
    August – .109

    That’s called “the book is out”. This is the part in the rookie’s season where the pitchers have adjusted to him. Can he now adjust to their adjustment? That’s what decides whether the guy sticks or not…

    Like

  153. 164 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    Actually, he hit .191, but point taken. I do think at least a part of it could be the fact he is now in an odd platoon (no rhyme or reason, just what FG feels like, according to ESPN broadcasters) and he’s 25 and no doubt worried that he could be labeled a platoon/backup guy.. I know if I were him, I’d press, I’d panic a bit…
    He’s hitting .250 over the last 16 AB’s , or, what BJ would call, red hot! 😉

    Like

  154. 165 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    Yes, you are correct… .191.

    Not so sure it’s a case of a youngster getting his hiney in a wad over a role, though. If a kid trying to make an impression gets rattled over sharing a few starts, it doesn’t speak well of his makeup, IMO. Until he signs a Melvinian albatross deal, he’s gotta prove himself every day. That goes for many of the players on all 30 MLB rosters. Entitlement only exists in the US economy…

    Liked by 1 person

  155. 166 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    V, thats a darned good question…who(whom?) to keep…I think that J Up is going to command a lot of money. His age, power…the dearth of power hitters. He might get 20 Mil a year, or more! So…the more I type….J Hey will be cheaper, is a home grown player, and the new stadium. You need more than FF and Kimbrel as the face of the club in the new park…

    Like

  156. 167 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    I just think, it’s got to be tough to prove you are truly an everyday player when…you don’t have a ton of speed, and don’t have power. Look at Prado and Infante, Bobby was bound and determined to make them platoon players, and make Kelly Johnson an everydayer…Funny, KJ is now the platoon player,and Infante (Royals) and Prado(Yankees) play most everyday…
    What does someone like La Stella have to hit, to play everyday? .270? .280? .290?
    I bet, if FG had his way, he’d love to have La Stella, and Gosslen both in the lineup(one of them can play left, don’t think they could play CF though)

    Like

  157. 168 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    The biggest strike against TLS (no pun intended) is that his defense is average at best. And when your overall offense is not exactly lighting up the scoreboard, you gotta clamp down on the D. And he is a good contact hitter, but that may not be enough in a lineup that has trouble stringing hits together.

    I like the kid and hope he can get back to a .280-.290 pace for the rest of 2014. It’ll make him more marketable as a throw-in in the offseason. 😉

    Like

  158. 169 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    JHey vs. JUp is a puzzler. Their market values may be near the same. IMO, JUp is underrated and JHey is overrated. Don’t misunderstand… I think both are terrific, and I wish we could keep both. But JHey hasn’t hit for either AVG or power consistently. JUp does consistently put up big numbers, but has a bad rap from his days in ARI when he didn’t do things the “Kirk Gibson” way. In other words, he didn’t look like he was running through a wall on every play. But look at his numbers. He’s legitimately in the top 5 MVP conversation. It’s funny… with Andruw Jones, Bobby used to say he made everything look fun and easy. Gibson thought JUp looked lazy. Same type player, different perspective IMO. I’ll take his numbers all day long.

    If I had to choose, I’d take… both. Different players that bring different tools to the table. Perfectly complimentary IMO. Sad they won’t be together for the long term. We’ve been Melvinated…

    Like

  159. 170 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    V, I was going to raise a question…I just saw you already raised 😛
    To trade, or not to trade J UP or J Hey… J Hey has only known one organization…so…he might, just might go for an extended deal, with a hometown discount. And it might make sense to do that now, in case he does turn into a 25-90 guy…then, along with his defense, he’s going to be too expensive.
    J Up, 2nd organization…not the same thing to him…just turned 27.
    Think the Red Sox, if unable to get Stanton (Which they seem to think is some God given right that they should have him cuz they are the Sox) would give a King’s Ransom for J Up, perhaps the only other power hitting outfielder that would be available?
    They have two kids they think highly of…that haven’t panned out yet.
    If the braves, end up at .500 at the end of the year…do you think they might trade Gattis, for say pitching…and J Up for some young outfielder?

    Like

  160. 171 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Oh my! 😯

    Like

  161. 172 Vox O'Raison August 28, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    J Hey has only known one organization…so…he might, just might go for an extended deal, with a hometown discount.

    Actually, he won’t. They tried to do such a deal this past offseason, but JHey’s side came in too heavy for the Braves’ taste. So they went 2 years and agreed to revisit it. He’s gonna get paid; he knows he’s gonna get paid; he wants to get paid.

    No clue what JUp might want. He’s kinda hard to read.

    I don’t think the Braves would give Gattis up for just pitching. He’s too much of their offense to not replace it in some way. That said, they’ll probably get some pitching back… and hitting… and prospects. That’s the aforementioned king’s ransom. He’s that valuable to an AL team.

    Like

  162. 173 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    V, that would change things if JHey won’t go for a hometown discount. Of course, he was coming off a pretty mediocre season(s) and they may have made an insultingly low offer.
    If BJ is “worth” 15 MIl a year, how about his bro, who, as streaky as he is, drives in many more runners, and hits for a higher average? I could see a team giving him 22-25 MIl a year, especially being so darned young still!

    Like

  163. 174 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2014 at 5:56 pm

    Hi guys, just a quick comment. Traditionally, outfielders and players in general do not hit their stride until their mid to late twenties. We saw a lot of abnormal stats during the steroid era but I look for things to return to normal sooner than later.

    J-Hey’s best years are still ahead of him. Justin’s will be also but not at a price the Braves can afford. Of course, if a new GM moves in, all kinds of changes will be ahead.

    I cannot see Gattis thriving in Boston. Lots of hard hit single off the monster.

    J-Hey will become a Yankee… Just will, weather we like it or not.

    Few players ever produce at a high level for 10 years.

    The most successful gamblers are those who have no regard for money….

    Looks like 2014 might be the Royals’ year after all…

    Like

  164. 175 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2014 at 5:57 pm

    Tough news for Venters…. Hang em up kid…

    Like

  165. 176 Gil in Mechanicsville August 28, 2014 at 6:01 pm

    Has to make all the fans of Medin and Beachy feel a little queasy.

    Like

  166. 177 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 10:32 pm

    Gil, I think from a PR standpoint(and fannies in the seats, which is all that matters to the corporation that owns this team) they have to keep one of the two. Sad to say , but a so-so year, next year, would make it easier for the braves to re-sign JHey. Plus, new park…hard to say who will be available during the 2016 offseason. But, lose 2/3rds of your outfield, then move into a new park? I Know, it would be after 2015 they would leave, still
    They have a real problem drawing now….Not sure what will help that…short of getting the stadium built sooner. I think those plans have kept some fans away…I mean, for all the issues, they are still right in the middle of the wildcard race, and have…a chance…at the division still. And, no one is coming out. Already, 11th out of 15 in attendance.
    I don’t know…a lot of issues for the next GM(if there will be a new one, I still find that a little hard to believe, just cuz the team , if nothing else, is fairly competitive every year) but, the next GM, or the same GM..don’t ya think he’s going to be very wary of signing anyone, with the issues the last 2 big signings have had? Might be another reason to re-sign 1 of JHey or J Up, less likely to bomb in the ATL….

    Like

  167. 178 berigan2electricboogaloo August 28, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    And poor Venters…I don’t get it…folks like Smoltz, David Wells, had it done once, and pitched forever afterwords. Just like…Tommy John did…
    There has to be some reason why it’s not “taking” for some players these days. If anything they should be better than ever now….

    Like

  168. 179 Vox O'Raison August 29, 2014 at 7:37 am

    Ervin “Magic” Santana shows Mikey Minor a new grip for his slider, and suddenly it becomes a devastating pitch, and Mikey becomes unhittable. I know we won’t be able to afford Magic after this season, but man I wish we could. He’s one of my faves this year. I not only love his talent, which is pretty dang good, but I love his personality. What a great teammate!

    Liked by 1 person

  169. 180 Vox O'Raison August 29, 2014 at 7:49 am

    Can’t afford Santana; can’t afford both JHey and JUp… it’s a maddening theme. We can afford Bossman Jr., though. BTW – nice game in CF by Boni last night.

    Maybe we can keep Jason and Boni and send both Uptons to NYY for Martin Prado. 😀

    Kidding…

    Liked by 1 person

  170. 181 Gil in Mechanicsville August 29, 2014 at 9:28 am

    Kidding…

    Are you VOX, are you really???

    Pretty impressive run by Mike Minor of late, amazing what can happen when potential is realized and reached. How many of us were clamoring for Mike to be traded for a bag of balls and some used bats?

    It’s as if Mike Minor has suddenly become Tim Hudson. All those ground ball outs….

    Like

  171. 182 Vox O'Raison August 29, 2014 at 10:22 am

    Did you get to see the game, Gil? His breaking ball was sick. New grip is paying of in spades…

    Like

  172. 183 berigan2electricboogaloo August 29, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    This isn’t the first time Minor has done a 180 like this. Had to look it up, 2012. Remember what his ERA was up to the All Star game? 5.97!!!! I was so mad that they didn’t send him down, he cost the braves a lot of games that year. Then, like a light switch…post all star break. 2.16!!!!
    Can anyone remember a pitcher changing so much in the middle of a season? And he’s done it twice.
    Yep, I was one of the folks more than willing to trade him for a bag of balls. He was terrible, til what, the last 4 starts?
    But, what a change!

    Like

  173. 184 Vox O'Raison August 29, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    Wow… you never really know what’s going on behind the scenes, do you?

    http://www.baseballamerica.com/minors/prune-packer-prompts-bidding-war/

    Like

  174. 185 berigan2electricboogaloo August 29, 2014 at 10:24 pm

    Man, sounds like the braves should have made an offer, or at least more than 250 K…oh well..
    So, Garrett Jones Just missed catching a line drive at 1st..and they kept harping on it, like it was an error. Don’t get it…but, moot point, in my mind, it was a hit by Pena, and several more runs scored. And J Up is hotter than a firecracker right now….nice long streak of hotness 27 RBI’s for the month they said…

    Liked by 1 person

  175. 186 Vox O'Raison August 30, 2014 at 9:07 am

    Like

  176. 187 Gil in Mechanicsville August 30, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    Did not get to see the game last night….

    VOX, I guess it’s his choice, maybe he does not believe he does not have another skill set. Perhaps it is covered under workman’s comp…. Good luck to him and the next team he signs to play for….

    Like

  177. 188 Gil in Mechanicsville August 30, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    Yeah Ber, I guess the Braves did not think they needed a guy who could throw 100mph… Still need to make payments on Melvin….

    Like

  178. 189 Gil in Mechanicsville August 31, 2014 at 9:33 pm

    Wow, what a gem of a game Sunday between the fish and the Bravos. Woods looked like the second coming of , well, somebody famous…. He was crazy good…. And Gattis was just Gattis… woohoo//

    Liked by 1 person

  179. 190 Vox O'Raison September 1, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    The good news: Evan Gattis is 3-for-6 with 2 HR’s against today’s Phillies starter Cole Hamels.

    The bad news: Gattis was not in today’s lineup.

    The worse news: The Braves were no-hit today.

    Liked by 1 person

  180. 191 Vox O'Raison September 1, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    Tell me again how Gattis is being kept fresh for the stretch run?

    Like

  181. 192 Vox O'Raison September 1, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    Like

  182. 193 Vox O'Raison September 1, 2014 at 5:36 pm

    Just want to make sure I get this right. Fredi didn’t start Gattis, who has a history of success against Hamels. And he pinch hit for the team’s best hitter this season in the 9th? Is he trying to prove his ineptitude or something?

    Liked by 1 person

  183. 194 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    LOL…. Turned it off after it was 5-0… Just had a feeling of where the game was going. Not surprisingly, it is where it went.

    Just when I get the feeling the Braves might actually pull this off, the offense, (I use that term loosely) reminds why it is a fool’s errant.

    At least it will not be an epic collapse, you have to have built something to begin with for it to collapse.

    Liked by 1 person

  184. 195 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    Joke of the week…. Raycom, the owner of our NBC affiliate failed to come to terms with DirecTV in order for it to carry the signal… I checked, not one single NBC program is on my must see list… HA! The joke is on Comcast…

    Like

  185. 196 Gil in Mechanicsville September 1, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    Once the baseball season is over, I flip to movie mode, that and audio books….

    Like

  186. 197 Gil in Mechanicsville September 2, 2014 at 10:48 am

    So, the Stros fire Bo Porter and his bench coach. I wonder if he would like to come to Atlanta? At least he could light a little fire under some butts maybe.

    Maybe a hitting coach or two who can get into Melvin.s head? If you are working 24/7 trying to fix a problem, maybe it’s because you don’t know how to answer the question. The best guys are the ones who look as if they never have to work hard to come up with a solution.

    Like

  187. 198 Vox O'Raison September 2, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    OK… this is very interesting to me. Mark Bradley has been around the local ATL fishwrapper for a long time. He’s one of 2 ajc sports columnists. This morning he conducted a “live” online Q&A session. He was asked the following question, with his response right behind:

    Q: “Rank the following in order of likelihood to be on 2015 opening day roster: BJ, Justin, Heyward, Gattis, La Stella”

    A: “Heyward, J. Upton, La Stella, B.J. Upton, Gattis”

    Wow. That speaks volumes to me as to the vibes being given off from the always private Braves front office.

    Like

  188. 199 Vox O'Raison September 2, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Also from the Bradley Q&A, after being asked the same questions repeatedly, it’s easy to determine he believes Frank will trade Gatt this offseason for a starting OF. He also believes that the organization has already given up on BJ.

    One might assume, then, that Fredi giving BJ the playing time he’s getting right now is a desperate attempt by the organization to give the guy some semblance of value. I get that. I’ll try not to complain so much when I see his name penciled in the lineup.

    Like

  189. 200 Vox O'Raison September 2, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Crikey :-/

    Like

  190. 201 Vox O'Raison September 2, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- Gatt, C
    6- CJ, 3B
    7- TLS, 2B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Mikey Minor, LHP

    Like

  191. 202 Vox O'Raison September 2, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    Really only 24 games left in the regular season? Yowsers!

    Like

  192. 203 berigan2electricboogaloo September 2, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    I missed the combined no hitter…a real shame 😦
    V, can’t for the life of me figure why FG sat Gattis (did any stories of sorness/sickness show up today?) and pinch hitting for J Up…I know they were down 7-0, but still…very odd…
    Kyle Kendrick seems to only survive because of what he can do to the braves(More in past years than this year, but still)
    TV ratings must be way down…cuz they are trying to paint such a pretty picture, usually they get pretty honest about the team…
    Again, keep playing BJ to show he isn’t worth taking a chance on…I am sure they will get as much for him as they got for Uggla…

    Like

  193. 204 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:10 am

    keep playing BJ to show he isn’t worth taking a chance on

    That’s just it – he isn’t worth taking a chance on now. Unless he starts beheading teammates in the dugout, it ain’t gonna get any worse. No place to go but up.

    Like

  194. 205 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:11 am

    I forgot they were even playing last night? Did they? Let me see how they did…

    Like

  195. 206 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:11 am

    Never mind.

    Liked by 1 person

  196. 207 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:17 am

    Minor allowed 7 hits & 3 runs with 5 K’s and 2 BB’s in 7.1 innings. A pretty solid night’s work.

    The Braves offense collected 3 hits and 0 runs in 2 days. A comparison to solid waste seems appropriate.

    Like

  197. 208 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:34 am

    I will only point out one of the painful lowlights from yesterday’s game:

    Ryan Doumit comes to the plate with 2 on and 1 out in the 6th, Braves trailing 2-0. He promptly pops up weakly to foul ground. He’s batting .194 on the season, .128 in the last month. (By comparison, BJ – the guy we are all clamoring to shove out the door – is batting .207 on the season, .182 in the last month.)

    Why is Doumit up at such a critical point in the game? He’s not the only guy on the bench. They had just called up Joey Terdo for PH duties, and he had a half decent season in AAA Gwinnett, batting .256 with 15 HR and 61 RBI. Why not give him a shot? Fredi thought it important to get Jose Constanza an AB in the shameful no-hit game on Monday. Why run Doumit out there again yesterday at a very important juncture in the game?

    I will say it again, and probably for the rest of this season. The Braves needed a solid bench piece and LHRP specialist at the trade deadline and got neither. It’s going to cost them a playoff spot this season.

    Like

  198. 209 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 7:44 am

    Speaking of meeting needs, the Nats also had a need for a LHRP and snagged Matt Thornton on a waiver claim from the Yanks in early August. He has appeared in 11 games for them and allowed exactly 0 runs.

    It must be noted that the Braves had a better waiver position than the Nats and let him pass right by.

    Like

  199. 210 berigan2electricboogaloo September 3, 2014 at 7:54 am

    “I forgot they were even playing last night? Did they? ”

    Good question V, good question. I think 1 guy pitching, showed up…

    Like

  200. 211 berigan2electricboogaloo September 3, 2014 at 8:44 am

    V, very good point about Thornton! I didn’t even know how they got him, but I saw on one baseball tonight, him striking someone out, at 97 MPH. I thought..gee, I thought he was past his prime, washed up…clearly not. Very smart pickup.
    I do, in a way…understand playing BJ…except. Supposedly, the Braves are in the hunt for the playoffs.
    But, it sounds more like they are hoping for a miracle, a 27 for his last 100 AB’s with 5-6 HR’s tossed in. So they can find a sucker..err, a team willing to take a chance on him, and pay say, 5 Mil of the 15 Mil a year he will be owed for the next 3 years. Perhaps sweeten the deal and toss in Minor. The one story as you all recall, wasn’t as good as that scenario….it was the braves take on the Cubs bad contract of Edwin Jackson(and I assume Money would more or less stay the same for both teams, but Minor would go to the Cubs) So, the braves could, in theory, lose Harang, Santana and Minor and have a rotation of Wood, Edwin Jackson(6.00 ERA), and…who? Medlen, if he can come back? David Hale? Untested prospect X? Guy that nobody wanted that will magically pitch like Harang of 2014?
    Nats , mutt, and Marlins would fear that rotation.
    You know why dealing BJ (and not eating 90% of his salary) is so unlikely?
    Alex Rios. Remember him? He still is playing , for the Rangers, and is now 33. (hitting .282)
    Toronto, decided to sign the home grown talent to a long term contract. From wiki…

    Rios signed a seven-year contract with the Blue Jays in April 2008 for a guaranteed amount of $69,835,000: $5.9 million in 2009, $9.7 million in 2010, $12 million each in 2011 and 2012 and $12.5 million each in 2013 and 2014
    in 2009, The Toronto Blue Jays placed Rios on waivers on August 7, 2009.[7] On August 10, 2009, Rios was officially claimed off waivers by the Chicago White Sox.[8]

    What did they Blue Jays get back? Salary relief. Yep, less than 2 years in, they decided Alex Rios was so lousy, that it would be better to get someone to take over his contract…and have some payroll flexibility.
    Just how terrible was Rios in the first year of that deal? BJ ish? 15 HR’s 79 RBI’s, 291 BA, 32 steals. 2nd year, the year they let him be claimed… after 108 games, 14 HR’s 62 RBI’s .247 BA , 19 steals. and…that was just too horrible, so they dumped him…
    BJ, after 251 games with the braves, has 18 HR’s, and 57 RBI’s and a sub .196 BA.
    Who is going to take a chance on that?
    Some team willing to pay 2-3 mil each year? Maybe. Are they going to give anything in return, unless the braves sweeten the pot? Nope. So, why not just release him? Nah…that makes too much sense. Best to give up talent to save a few Mil per year….

    Like

  201. 212 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 9:53 am

    I do not believe the Braves will give up any real talent just to get rid of BJ unless they get real talent back in some form. It makes no sense. In fact, let’s just think about the reported scenario (which has never been confirmed, but all things on the internet are true, right?) Braves give BJ plus Minor for Jackson and enough cash to equal out the bad contracts. That would leave the Braves with the same cash outlay minus one starting pitcher. It just doesn’t add up because you can achieve the same financial results by just releasing the guy, and get to keep your pitcher.

    So I don’t really take the supposed details in that reported scenario too seriously. Now trading one bad contract for another straight up is a real possibility because it gives each team the small hope that the ol’ fabled “change of scenery” might help a little. And sometimes it does. Clearly BJ has worn out his welcome in Atlanta. There is no hope remaining for him here. Maybe we could scrounge up a little hope for someone else’s albatross.

    You know, you can never really figure how well a player is going to perform. Look at some past players with Braves connections. Reggie Sanders was an immensely talented player until he put on a Braves uni. That was one completely forgettable season in 2000 where he batted .232 and only drove in 37 runs. How about Melky? In 2010 in ATL he hit .255 and drove in 42 runs. Even after coming off the juice, he hasn’t approached those abysmal numbers since. Bret Boone? He was an All-Star in 1998, then came to ATL in 1999 and batted .252 and drove in just 63 while striking out 112 times. He was Uggla before Uggla was Uggla.

    Should I go on? Does anyone remember Damaso Garcia? For 9 years in the AL he batted .293, averaged 34 SB’s per season and was an All-Star in the ’84 & ’85 campaigns. He was brought to the Braves in ’88 to be the veteran 2B to match with young SS Andres Thomas. He totaled just 7 hits as a Brave, and 3 of those came in the season opener. After that, he managed just 4 more in 53 AB. His .117 AVG was lower than pitchers Rick Mahler, Zane Smith and Charlie Puleo. He was released in May (replaced by a young prospect named Ron Gant) after twice pulling himself from the lineup and refusing to play 3B. He was so beloved by his teammates that they celebrated his release by burning his uniform.

    So things could be a worse. When we look out onto the diamond and see BJ standing between Justin and Jason, we can chant the words “Damaso, Damaso…” It’s gotta make us feel a little better, doesn’t it?

    Like

  202. 213 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Post note: The Braves really did not burn Damaso Garcia’s uni. That was a tongue-in-cheek reference to Damaso burning his own uniform in 1986 while with Toronto, trying to break a slump. Ironically, the uni torching and Jays’ manager Jimy WIlliams’ blistering response to it strained their relationship and was the beginning of the end of Damaso’s tenure in Toronto. I got to thinking that my reference was probably too vague for anyone to remember. I was a huge braves fan in the 80’s and remember Damaso Garcia as the poster boy for all of the Braves failures back then.

    You know, when you think about some of the horrible players that Dale Murphy had to prop up all those years – Damaso Garcia, Andrews Thomas, Brad Komminsk, Rick Cerone, Jim Morrison, etc. (way too many to list them all here) – the man deserves the HOF just for sharing the clubhouse with them.

    Liked by 1 person

  203. 214 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 10:33 am

    History is kinda my thang…

    Like

  204. 215 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:08 am

    Oh, and if anyone is interested, it’s a noon game today.

    2day’s pathetic lineup:

    1- JHey, RF
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- Ryan Flippin’ Doumit, LF (You gotta be kidding me. 😡 )
    5- TLS, 2B
    6- CJ, 3B
    7- Bethancourt, C (Again, no Gattis. Got to keep him fresh for when games matter, right? 🙄 )
    8- BJ, CF (“Damaso… Damaso…”)
    9- Ervin “Magic” Santana, RHP

    Like

  205. 216 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:18 am

    Is there drug testing for managers?

    Liked by 1 person

  206. 217 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Why is Ryan Doumit starting in LF? I know Justin got plunked in the left elbow again by Kendrick. But with all the possibilities to play LF – Terdo, Boni, Gosselin, heck even the perpetually resting Gattis – why Doumit? .191 AVG, .230 OBP, .298 SLG… just the numbers you want in your cleanup spot, right?

    The team has managed 3 hits against the division cellar dweller in the last 2 games, and Fredi puts even worse hitters into the Game 3 lineup.

    Like

  207. 218 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:42 am

    So Kendrick has hit JUp in the same elbow the last 2 times he faced him, and JUp was out of the lineup following each time. Can we please just hit someone wearing a “P” today? Can we show a little emotion? Maybe carry a small chip to the fiend? Unless the umpires serve a warning to both benches prior to the game, let’s just hit Revere to start the game and get it on. Maybe it’ll wake someone, or something up in our dugout.

    Like

  208. 219 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:43 am

    fiend Uh, field. Although “fiend” may have been a Freudian slip.

    Like

  209. 220 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 11:44 am

    *tap* *tap* *tap* Is this thing on? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  210. 221 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    Doumit squibs one just under Utley’s glove for a single, TLS bunts him over, Bethancourt (needs a nickname) earns an infield single that brings Doumit home, and BJ hits a 2 run HR.

    Well… OK then.

    Like

  211. 222 Vox O'Raison September 3, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    Braves win 7-4 on big offensive days for Doumit, Bethancourt and BJ. Who woulda thunk it?

    Like

  212. 223 berigan2electricboogaloo September 3, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    V, we just got ’em made bad mouthin’ them! :mrgreen:

    Like

  213. 224 Vox O'Raison September 4, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Well… the Braves have an off day today as they travel to Miami to “go Fishin'”. Yesterday’s offensive breakout didn’t really inspire me as a whole, but one thing I saw definitely encouraged me.

    i’m not so sure we can label Christian Bethancourt as a “defense only” catcher anymore. His AB’s yesterday were solid, and the 3 hit, 2 RBI result is evidence. The kid has turned the corner offensively IMO and is ready to stay in the bigs. I did not realize he was coming off such a strong August at Gwinnett, where he hit .342 in 19 games and finished his 2014 AAA campaign at.283 in 91 games.

    It would not surprise me to see him get alot of starts the rest of this year, especially in Texas where Gatt can DH. (BTW- Texas is rumored to be a possible landing spot for Gatt this offseason. A nice showing for those 3 games might enhance the “king’s ransom” we should get back for him.)

    Anyway, I believe Bethancourt has arrived for good. Great looking catcher. As much as I love Gattis, Betty will only help our pitchers, whom are already pretty strong.

    Like

  214. 225 Gil in Mechanicsville September 4, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Wonder if we can get five “ready for the show: rookies from the Rangers? One has to wonder how well Gattis would hold up for an entire season? I’m sure there has to be an American League team (cough) Athletics… who could use a “cheap” bopper… Oakland have anybody worth trading for?

    So, yesterday I went with Josie for the start of her fall bowling league.. Her team won all three games, and gave up watching the Braves for a day, hoping it would change their luck…. Worked on both counts…

    Washington’s new hitting coach seemed to do the trick for them, could it work for the Braves?

    Like

  215. 226 Vox O'Raison September 4, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Hitting coaches always seem to be the scapegoat. For me personally, I believe the hitters have to do their job. They are the one’s truly responsible for performing or not. But a hitting coach’s job is to coach… well, hitting. So when hitting fails, somebody’s gotta take the fall.

    I look for Gattis to bring back a solid hitting OF. Gotta have one. I think BJ is done as the full time CF after 2014, whether he’s still on the team or not. And we’ll lose one if not both of our corner OF’s in 2015.

    I think he’ll bring back a top shelf OF, a top hitting prospect, and a couple of lesser minor leaguers. That is minimum to me. Remember, he’s a guy who not only poses a major HR threat every time he strides to the plate, he’s very cheap for a few more years. His value will never be higher than it is right now… or at the end of 2014. Timing is everything.

    Like

  216. 227 Vox O'Raison September 4, 2014 at 11:33 am

    To revisit our JUp vs. JHey discussion, I believe JHey is more important to this team regardless of his underachieving offensive numbers. If I had it my way, I’d keep both, but JHey brings something to this team beyond just statistics. And that is a major reason I get bent outta shape at all the SABRE-goobs arguing WAR and BABIP and ASAP and FUBAR. JHey simply brings something to this team that is immeasurable. My position has changed alot since this season began, and I now hope that both sides can agree on a Freddie-like deal during this offseason. Gotta keep him here.

    I might also entertain trading JUp this offseason given his standout performance this year. It’s another case of trading high on a guy they likely won’t be able to afford after 2015 is done anyway. I realize that means re-tooling 2/3 of the OF, but the CF has been a tool for 2 seasons anyway. And Gatt will surely bring back a worthy guy anyway. If you can trade JUp and his $14.5M obligation for 2015, you could pick up a pretty darn good FA to plug in.

    I do believe there will be a good bit of movement on this roster this offseason despite the number of players that got locked down already.

    Like

  217. 228 Vox O'Raison September 4, 2014 at 11:51 am

    Just a thought, but Detroit will likely lose their DH/part-time C Victor Martinez to FA. Gattis would slide into that role perfectly. Wonder if the Kitties would part with J.D. Martinez?

    Like

  218. 229 Gil in Mechanicsville September 4, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    VOX, I think there will be a lot of suitors for a guy like Evan from a host of American League teams, and if not during the off season, then during the spring. I still say he could play a bit of first base as well as catch but as a DH, he would be gold…. And if the Braves can;t get what they want, well, there is still left field. Lots of guys who are worse defensively in the position than Gatty who play everyday.

    Keeping his bat available would not the the worse thing in the world. Also keep in mind, the Braves have a lot of guys with very tradable contracts, not like the Phillies who have old guys with boat anchors around their necks making them un-tradable.

    Like

  219. 230 berigan2electricboogaloo September 5, 2014 at 12:36 am

    potential free agents this off season..
    Outfielders
    Norichika Aoki
    Emilio Bonifacio
    Melky Cabrera
    Nelson Cruz
    Michael Cuddyer
    Chris Denorfia
    Jeff Francoeur
    Jonny Gomes
    Franklin Gutierrez
    Tony Gwynn Jr.
    Scott Hairston
    Torii Hunter
    Raul Ibanez
    Reed Johnson
    Ryan Lukwick *
    Nick Markakis *
    Darnell McDonald
    Mike Morse
    Colby Rasmus
    Alex Rios *
    Nate Schierholtz
    Grady Sizemore
    Seth Smith
    Alfonso Soriano
    Denard Span *
    Ichiro Suzuki
    Ryan Sweeney
    Josh Willingham
    Chris Young
    Delmon Young

    Who, besides Nelson Cruz(too expensive, and really slumped after 2 great months)
    looks appealing? I was going to say Nick Markakis, but after 129 games, 12 HR, 44 RBI’s Meh…
    People liked Torri Hunter, Ryan Lukwick, etc would be good signings…in 2008. Seth Smith has actually been better than you would expect . 279..but still only 12 HR’s and 42 RBI’s.
    If you want a power hitting outfielder, 20 to 30 HR potential every year…there is a guy named Gattis…

    Like

  220. 231 Vox O'Raison September 5, 2014 at 7:37 am

    My JUp supposition was really purely hypothetical, and not likely at all. Now I do think they’ll do something with BJ, but I cannot imagine how they’ll gracefully sever the relationship.

    As Gil says, there are a number of AL teams that would drool all over the prospects of Gatt as DH. And his greatest value is there. Not pointing fingers, but Gattis is clearly in the bottom half of catchers defensively. I won’t regurgitate all the statistics, and I cannot understand most of the the “defensive metrics” anyway, but Gattis scores in the negative area in most if not all. If you go back and look at the number of games the Braves lost this year by just 1 run, you can see why our defense is so critical. All you have to do is look at St. Louis to see how a talented defensive catcher can change the game. Now I’m not predicting Betty to be the next Yadier Molina, but he has drawn some mighty lofty comparisons.

    I must admit that for the first time in my life, I almost could be accepting of a DH in the NL so that Gattis could stay in ATL and be ours. As good as his numbers look for a catcher, they’re only middle of the pack for OF, and if we are really honest about it, we’ll admit he was about as mobile as an oak in LF. Fredi refuses to play him more than about 4 games a week at catcher anyway. He’d be in the lineup everyday as a DH. That’s where his real value resides.

    I cannot remember the last time the Braves had a guy on the block that the rest of baseball coveted. I really can’t. No idea what we might expect in return…

    Like

  221. 232 Vox O'Raison September 5, 2014 at 7:45 am

    Well… apparently WordPress did not like the link I just attempted to share… :-\

    Like

  222. 233 Vox O'Raison September 5, 2014 at 9:42 am

    Dadgum…

    Liked by 1 person

  223. 234 Gil in Mechanicsville September 5, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    Sure, Evan will be a real plus when the DH is mandated by the new commmisoner for both leagues, just saying.

    Funny how a little playing time can change your stats. Maybe Jordan just could not break out from the shadow of Melvin, after all, not loike he was going to force Melvin to sit down…

    Liked by 1 person

  224. 236 Vox O'Raison September 6, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    Thanks for the link CL. It appears the ajc staff has been reading our little work here. It’s a nice summation of the last couple days’ discourse.

    Liked by 1 person

  225. 237 berigan2electricboogaloo September 6, 2014 at 5:28 pm

    The thing is…who? or for whom would Gattis be traded for? If he doesn’t catch at least 100 games a year for a team, his value is going to be less. But berigan, you say….right handed power hitters are a premium…yep. True that, but other than Big Popi, teams seem to be moving away from a full time DH. Now, LF isn’t as important as C, but still more valuable than DH.
    I mentioned something above…. RH hitters with pop are rare today. Heck, any hitter with Pop is increasingly rare, what with everyone and their brother throwing 95 + in the bullpen (the guys…guys fattened up their numbers against not that long ago) So, who is that power hitting outfielder that Gattis brings back? Someone under say…33. That hits homers, drives in runs, and hits hits as well? Talked about the free agents. We got so lucky with J Up (perhaps thats why we couldn’t get too lucky with 2 Up’s in the outfield :/ ) but the GM that traded him, is now out of a job. Few teams have players like him(and I think the main reason they traded him was he was injured some, and didn’t live up to his potential, or rather what they thought his potential was(seem to recall the team prez of the diamondbacks racking him over he coals one year when he had a lingering hand injury-stupid)
    I thought of looking over team rosters…and just trying to see if anyone fits the bill . Stanton would do nicely, but somehow…I don’t think that would happen 😛
    What may seem like a good idea, in theory, trading Gattis for power hitting player X, that some team inexplicably doesn’t want(sure he hits for power, and doesn’t cost 20 Mil, but we need another power hitter in exchange for him thats cheap and a power hitter) I don’t know who fits that bill. Unless you trade a proven hitter, Gattis, for an unproven prospect or 2.
    Remember, the Rays had the either first or 2nd best pitcher in David Price, and all they got for him was a number 3 or 4 starter, and a A ball player, that is supposed to be very good…down the road.

    Like

  226. 238 Gil in Mechanicsville September 6, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    Yes Ber, I still think Gat’s greatest value is in left field. Yes VOX, I know he was really raw out there two years ago but that is why you send guys to the Caribbean for the winter…

    Still allows for the Braves to have three catchers on the roster….

    As for defense, I don’t think Piazza was all that as a defensive catcher either….

    Heck, even having just Joey T in the outfield would be an upgrade over Melvin playing everyday.

    Nope, the Braves need to completely rethink their hitting approach, period…

    Like

  227. 239 Gil in Mechanicsville September 7, 2014 at 7:19 am

    WHEW!… So, looks like the Braves will have to trade their only real offensive threat at the end of the season, sad….:(

    Like

  228. 240 Gil in Mechanicsville September 7, 2014 at 7:21 am

    I am wondering if Alex Wood has crossed Jordan Walden off his Christmas list yet?

    Like

  229. 241 Vox O'Raison September 7, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Crossed the Jordan, eh? 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  230. 242 Vox O'Raison September 7, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Ya think? With only about 20 games left, it’s about time…

    Liked by 2 people

  231. 243 berigan2electricboogaloo September 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    V, to be fair, he’s going to need to be fresh for the deep playoff run the braves are poised to make… poised just as our economy is to take off!!!!!
    😆

    Liked by 1 person

  232. 244 Vox O'Raison September 8, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    How inconsiderate of Evan. And after Fredi saved him all season just for these 3 weeks, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  233. 246 Carolina Lady September 8, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    I also posted a permanent link to the schedule top right for your convenience.

    Liked by 2 people

  234. 247 Vox O'Raison September 8, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    Hey, that’s cool, CL. Thanks!!

    Liked by 1 person

  235. 248 Gil in Mechanicsville September 8, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    Do I even dare to watch?

    Like

  236. 249 Vox O'Raison September 8, 2014 at 9:07 pm

    If you like 0’s, then sure… why not…

    Liked by 1 person

  237. 250 Vox O'Raison September 8, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    They suck.

    Like

  238. 251 berigan2electricboogaloo September 8, 2014 at 10:25 pm

    Hope you didn’t dare…my Dad’s Birthday, so flipped over when he got a call…fortunately, I missed it all…

    Like

  239. 252 Gil in Mechanicsville September 9, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    Okay, I think we have all seen this movie before, sadly, we all know how it’s going to end…

    Like

  240. 253 Vox O'Raison September 9, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    From an ajc Q&A session:

    Q: The Braves are so disappointing this year! They act like they don’t have a care in the world. I see no fire and want with this group. All I see are a bunch of overpaid zombies. Do you sense a pulse when you are around the team? Do they act like they care behind closed doors? They certainly act like they don’t care once the cameras are on.

    A: Yes, they care. I don’t think it’s great chemistry, but I also think that’s about the personnel and the lack of a leader with both the personality to speak with authority and conviction to other players as a group, and the gravitas to pull it off and have it resonate with the group. Not to generalize, but a veteran player who plays with a real intensity and through apparent injuries, inspires other players in that way, is always nice to have. They’re not readily available, but imp’t to keep when you have one.

    I think that is so spot on. IMO, an athlete does not reach the professional level without caring about what he does, whether it is outwardly visible or not. What is being said without naming names is that the Braves should have retained Tim Hudson this past offseason. I believe that was a turning point in the way the 2014 team was shaped. Chipper was that guy for a number of years, and Mac picked up the mantle in 2013. Everyone wanted Freeman to take that role for 2014, but the reality is that his Cali roots make him too laid back for that kind of personality. I don’t see a readily available successor. The lack of leadership is evidenced through all of the 1-run losses. No clutch hitting; no timely performances; no big shoulders to load the team on…

    Liked by 2 people

  241. 254 Gil in Mechanicsville September 10, 2014 at 9:37 am

    Have we not seen this very thing happen time and time again with young teams. that is, wilting under pressure? At some point, you have to have a guy in the clubhouse who can rally the troops.

    The Braves are done this season… I know, they still have a chance to back into the playoffs but I do not think it can happen.

    Look for some sacrificial lambs to be led to slaughter soon…. Dan Uggla was more important to this team than anyone thought possible….

    Like

  242. 255 Vox O'Raison September 10, 2014 at 10:07 am

    So I read that the Braves are hopeful that Gattis will be 100% or the upcoming series in Texas so that he can play in front of his hometown crowd. Great! I love that! But wait… I also read that Fredi expects him to DH in 2 of those 3 games.

    What!?!

    DH in 2 of 3? Why is he not DH’ing in 3 of 3? Does he plan to catch him one game? If so, why? He has the best defensive C in the organization already on the squad! Is he going to rest him again? Does Fredi own a calendar?

    There can be no more looking out for next month or next week! Fredi needs his best possible 9 in the lineup for each of the season’s remaining games!

    If he doesn’t DH Gattis and C CBet for each of those 3 games in Texas then Fredi has lost what’s left of his flippin’ mind. 😡

    If I’m Fredi, my final 17 lineups are pretty easy.

    I take advantage of 3 days of DH and maximize my offense and defense between Gatt and CBet. I bury BJ so far on the bench he has to pick splinters out of his eyebrows. I assign Pena to be BJ’s designated splinter picker. Gosselin and Terdo are my “go to” guys off the bench. Laird and Doumit make sure Gosselin and Terdo are loose and hydrated, My 1-4 hitters are always JHey, Boni, Free & JUp. 5-8 are always Gatt, CJohn, TLS and Simba, except in Texas, where CBet slots in ahead of Simba.

    I ride that horse the rest of the way because it’s my best offensive group. And if Fredi doesn’t realize he’s desperate for offensive production, then he should seek professional help. Is Dr. Jack Llewellyn still practicing?

    Liked by 1 person

  243. 256 Vox O'Raison September 10, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- JHeyward, RF
    2- Gosselin, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- CJ, 3B
    6- TLS, 2B
    7- CBet, C
    8- BJ, Cf
    9- A-a-ron Harang, RHP

    Awful lineup…

    Like

  244. 257 Vox O'Raison September 10, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    My official schedule has today’s game as a night game, but it actually starts at 4:05pm. Be aware. Or beware. Whichever is most applicable.

    Liked by 1 person

  245. 258 berigan2electricboogaloo September 10, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    or be-wary 😛

    Like

  246. 259 Vox O'Raison September 11, 2014 at 8:36 am

    Well… it was actually a well played, well pitched game yesterday. It was the kind of game that reminds us what this team is capable of when they put it all together. In that sense, it was frustrating, but I’ll take it. If they stay this track, the 4 games at the end of the month (not the last series, but the one prior) with the Pirates will essentially be a playoff series.

    Now for pure speculation… if the Braves do claim the 2nd Wild Card slot and have that insane 1 game play-in with the Giants, could Huddy get the start against us?

    Like

  247. 260 Vox O'Raison September 11, 2014 at 8:57 am

    And for the record, in case anyone forgot where I stand…

    I detest the 2nd Wild Card, and especially hate the 1 game play-in. I personally do not like any 2nd place team reaching the playoffs, so am not a fan of the Wild Card in general, but I understand its need with 3 baseball divisions. But to have a team’s post-season fate determined by 1 game where any innocuous factor can effect the outcome, like… oh, I don’t know… a phantom infield-fly-rule called in LF?

    I detest the DH…. but have actually thawed in some small microscopic amount given our current status with Gattis. If it truly is inevitable, then lets get it over with and utilize Evan to his greatest strength. If it isn’t, then get rid of it in the AL. To have 2 parts of the same professional group playing by different rules is just dumb. Can anyone explain how that makes any sense?

    I detest artificial turf. Period.

    I detest domes, but can live with retractable roofs. Baseball should never be played in snow. Ever. (Football should be played in everything including lightning and tornadoes, but I digress.)

    I detest the regular season pushing into October, which 2015 will.

    I detest the World Series pushing into November, which 2015 will and 2014 probably will.

    I detest the World Series’ home field advantage being determined by the outcome of an exhibition game. It’s the worst edict to come out of Bud’s office, and he’s had some bad ones.

    I detest so many off days between World Series games.

    I detest all the World Series games being played so late that even I cannot stay up and watch them. And they wonder why the younger generation has turned its back on baseball…

    Like

  248. 261 Gil in Mechanicsville September 11, 2014 at 9:20 am

    I thought the game was at 7:05 like the other two. Read VOX’s post and turned on the game just in time to see Justin drive in two. I must admit, the game is so much better to watch when the Braves are up by 5 runs. Sort of corrects the out of whack nature or the universe and all.

    Aaron Harang must wonder how the Marlins are able to club him whenever he is in Miami but he pitches like an All-Star against the gNats.

    Like

  249. 262 berigan2electricboogaloo September 11, 2014 at 9:22 am

    V, I’m confused(should be my middle name) I heard Jim Powell say if the braves got into the 1 game playoff, and won that game, that perhaps it could be the Nats they would play…Is there a link to the order teams play of the new playoff structure?

    Like

  250. 263 Vox O'Raison September 11, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Yes Ber, that is correct. It used to be that they would not play NLDS games between teams in the same division. That changed a couple of years ago and now it is strictly done by regular season record. The division winner with the best regular season record gets the WC survivor.

    Like

  251. 264 Gil in Mechanicsville September 11, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    I just finished reading a blurb by Bowman on the problem the Braves face next year with Bethancourt being ready to take over the everyday duties behind the dish vs what to do with Gattis. So, here is my take

    1. Both are young

    2. Both are cheap

    3. Evan can play DH, catch, some left field and PH and in a pinch likely first base.

    4.The Braves are always looking for a “power bat” from the right side.

    Thus, unless the Braves are getting a mother lode back for Evan Gattis, I would just a soon hang onto him. He would be cheaper than Domit with better numbers and better defense, just saying.

    I know the WAR on Evan was -10 when he was in left field last year as far as fielding but for a team that already is as offensively challenged as any I can remember in recent Braves’ history, more defense is not going to be the answer to their problems.

    Oh well, let’s see how the rest of the week goes. Braves need to have a nice streak to put themselves in the hunt. Losing two of every three isn’t going to get it done.

    Like

  252. 266 Gil in Mechanicsville September 12, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    What is with these headhunters? Now I guess people see why J-Hey continues to wear a face shield on his batting helmet. This one will not be forgotten quickly by the Marlins methinks. Especially after Johnson being hit too.

    If I were Ryan Bruan, I would never dig in against a Marlins’ hurler ever again. Just saying.

    I know pitchers have to pitch inside to establish a zone but never do they need to throw at someone’s head.

    Like

  253. 267 berigan2electricboogaloo September 12, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    from the article at the link… In the video, Stanton is seen trying to duck out of the 88 mph pitch’s path before being hit and falling to the ground. Trainers from both team responded immediately.

    No, he didn’t!(typical great journalism from the ajc) Alex Cora and others mentioned that fact on baseball tonight. (And they mention it in the clip) No, not blaming him, but they were wondering if he just didn’t see the ball, as players usually turn away…and he’s looking right at the ball it appears, when it him him. Then the Brewers pitcher hit the next guy…clearly he was rattled…they also said they probably should have taken him out…Hope no brewers hitter gets hurt today or tomorrow. It’s in Milwaukee, and if Carlos Gomez got hit in the face or neck….there would be real trouble.
    Regardless , it’s a real shame what happened to Stanton, thank God it didn’t get him in the eye. Should be able to return next year aok…

    Like

  254. 268 Gil in Mechanicsville September 12, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    Alex Wood doing what Alex Wood does…Unfortunately, the Braves offense is continuing to do what they don’t…

    Like

  255. 269 Gil in Mechanicsville September 13, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    So, Evan continues to ail, along with the Braves offense. Sigh…. You get a feeling the Braves may be big movers this off season, starting with the coaching staff… They say good pitching beats good hitting but you get the feeling that every other team in the league is filled with Cy Young candidates when confronted by the Braves’ batting average.

    So, look for a big shake up in Braves country as soon as the league allows for moment after the World Series….

    Like

  256. 270 Gil in Mechanicsville September 13, 2014 at 1:20 pm

    It is not just a matter of finances, it has come to the point of having “The Guy” that makes the difference.

    Like

  257. 271 Gil in Mechanicsville September 13, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    Trying to decide if I want to watch the game or mow the lawn…. Dang, tough decision…

    Like

  258. 272 Gil in Mechanicsville September 13, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    Should have mowed the lawn…..

    Liked by 1 person

  259. 273 Gil in Mechanicsville September 14, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    Oh my, a lost weekend in Texas…. Anyone else remember when the Braves could not win without Chipper in the line up? This team is like that, no clutch guy to carry the team….

    And everything that could go wrong has…

    Like

  260. 274 berigan2electricboogaloo September 14, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    Wow, to be swept by the worst team in baseball…wow….

    Like

  261. 275 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 7:49 am

    Worse than the 0-fer trip to the west coast. This one had much more meaning and impact. Now 4 games back for the last WC spot, and the Nats in for 3. Do you realize we the Nats could clinch the division and knock us out of the WC all in one series?

    Honestly, I think I’d rather just fade out in September. This bunch is too disappointing already for them to just amplify it in October. So many flaws. With all the bad karma in Atlanta right now following the Atlanta Hawks debacle, people around here are just in a mood to dump everyone and start over. Frank ought to be sweating.

    Like

  262. 276 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 7:50 am

    Since the trade deadline:

    Jordan Schafer — .300 AVG, .375 OBP, 10 RBI, 14 R, 12 SB, 18 K

    BJ Upton ———- .159 AVG, .281 OBP, 07 RBI, 10 R, 01 SB, 30 K
    EBoni ————– .241 AVG, .284 OBP, 02 RBI, 09 R, 08 SB, 21 K

    Painful.

    Like

  263. 277 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 7:54 am

    Perhaps he should have started a little sooner? 🙄

    Liked by 1 person

  264. 278 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 8:04 am

    Maybe if he had started worrying in July or August, we might not be 4 games out of the WC in the “2nd week of September”. Maybe.

    Maybe we’d be better than 1 game above .500. Maybe.

    Like

  265. 279 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 11:07 am

    I guess FG thinks what worked for Bobby, will work for him…I understand, we all would have hit the panic button earlier than Bobby or FG, and at times, we would be wrong to do that….but, I also think both were/are adverse to playing the hot hand…unless they stay hot for weeks in limited play.
    To now not be running BJ out there every day…makes one wonder if Wren didn’t say to FG recently, look, we may both be gone if this team doesn’t at least make a 1 game playoff appearance….put Boni out there.
    Funny, some fellow baseball fans on a different trivia team (sadly, no one on my team cares for baseball 😦 ) seemed to think Wren would be more in the hotseat than FG… thing is, new GMs don’t seem to stick with old managers anyways…of course, GM changes have not been the braves way, in the past at least….
    Also, one of those trivia baseball fans said, “So, I hear there is talk of trading Gattis in the offseason. Who hits then? Heck, if they had traded for David Price, or John Lester, would they get into the playoffs then? ”
    Hard to argue that point.
    IF he is traded, it has to be for some can’t miss hitting prospect…the kind of player that doesn’t seem to exist these days. :/

    Like

  266. 280 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    As for Frank Wren, to me there are a couple of sides to the same coin…

    First, this team is severely flawed in its construction. That falls squarely on Frank’s shoulders. Too many RH bats, too many K’s, not enough contact hitters, not enough OBP guys.

    There were alot of rumors when BJ was signed that the Braves were going to trade for Denard Span, and I was all for it. **To be fair, I did celebrate the signing of BJ. Ironically, Span went to our rivals on the very same day BJ was formally introduced in Atlanta.

    But tell me how Span would look in this lineup. He’s LH and a leadoff guy. It would have transformed the lineup completely. Pair the speedy OBP guy with a non-K guy behind him, then let the hosses do the heavy lifting. If you’ll recall, at the time Simba was one of the hardest guys in the NL to strike out… remember? Of course, that has changed dramatically being around all the “all or nothing” swingers he’s been around for too long. Span, Simba, Free, Jup, JHey, Gatt, CJohn, TLS would be so much more balanced and fluid. But insert RH non-leadoff BJ into the mix, and it scrambles the whole recipe.

    I know… hindsight is always 20/20. But I am talking from a purely philosophical standpoint. Span was/is a pure leadoff hitter and LH. BJ is not and never has been either. His power and K numbers suggested he was much more suited to the middle of the lineup. Thus the problem with Frank’s team construction. It’s full of middle of the lineup hitters. Somewhere in there you need a guy who can get on base, and another guy who can put the ball in play behind him. It’s simple Baseball 101.

    The trade for James Russell was simply not a good one. He did not meet our most dire need, and the lack of a LHRP in our ‘pen has cost us several games. That was a must at the deadline, and Frank settled for what he could rather than making it happen for what we needed.

    I never understood the Ryan Doumit trade, His numbers have not been anything to write home about since 2008, and he was never a proven PH. I think his acquisition was driven by his ability to catch, supposedly so that the Braves could bat Gattis and Laird more liberally with the presence of a 3rd catcher. He appeared in only 2 games behind the plate this year, so that argument doesn’t really wash with me. And Fredi certainly did not bat Gattis liberally. (If he’s one of our most potent hitters, he should have had more than 359 AB’s thus far. By comparison, Free leads the team with 563, BJ has had 488, and late comer Tommy La Stella has had 309. That’s dreadful with respect to El Oso Blanco. He doesn’t need to be El Asso Bencho. Of course, that part is on Fredi, and that is a whole separate rant.)

    Gotta say, no one expected Ramiro Pena to be as ineffective as he has been this season. Don’t know how Frank could have seen that coming. And no one could have predicted that Schafer would catch fire in Minnesota. His season numbers certainly did not portend that. It just rubs a little more salt in a gaping CF wound.

    Now, as for the other side of the coin…

    He lost 2/5 of this year’s starting rotation in a 24 hour span before the Braves left Disney. Ervin Santana was a no-brainer. We just needed the $$ to make it happen and Frank was granted that. But he did find Aaron Harang available and snapped him up quickly. That was certainly a positive. But the loss of Medlen and Beachy was a hard setback before game 1 was even in the books. And let’s not forget Gavin Floyd and his freak elbow injury. Who saw that coming? What about Cory Gearrin, Shae Simmons and Jonny Venters? It’s a good thing the Braves have pitching depth in the organization with 6 pitchers on the major league level going down for the season. That is half the ML staff and is just brutal. Um… that organizational pitching depth is a notch on Frank’s side, BTW.

    Since Frank became the GM in 2008, his teams have finished 4th, 3rd, 2nd, 2nd, 2nd and 1st. Consistent progress by most standards. They have made the playoffs in 3 of the last 4 seasons. winning 90+ games in all of those but 2011 (89). And he’s done this with a strict mid-level payroll cap that was almost doubled by 1st place Phillie in his first few seasons.

    Under Frank’s watch, the Braves have developed – and locked up – a pretty talented young core that will be around for several years. I don’t know of many GM’s that would not like to have Freddie Freeman or Andrelton Simmons or Julio Tehran or Craig Kimbrel.

    In other words, he’s done a pretty good job for most of his tenure here.

    Obviously, there is no excusing this year’s team. It is certainly flawed and painful to watch at times. But I think Frank gets a pass and a chance to correct his mistake. I think his record gives him that. But he’s got a mighty big job to do this off-season to keep the dogs at bay. I mean a big’un. A real big’un.

    Like

  267. 281 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    If he [Gattis] is traded, it has to be for some can’t miss hitting prospect…the kind of player that doesn’t seem to exist these days.

    See, I told you it’s a really big job. 😉

    Like

  268. 282 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    The key on Gattis is that he is a power bat that can catch on occasion and is cheap for the next several seasons. That is an AL dream.

    How about LF J.D Martinez in Detroit? He’s had a great season, only coming on after regular Andy Dirks’ back injury. He’s cheap, only 27 years old, under team control until 2018, and according to Rant Sports is “… is now slashing a staggering .305/.350/.557 with 22 home runs and 71 RBIs [in just 110 games]. At this point, it should be safe to say that he has been the greatest surprise of the Tigers’ season.”

    Dirks should be healthy again in 2015. Los Tigres are about to lose their DH / part-time C Victor Martinez to FA. And Comerica Park has a very hitter friendly left side of the OF. Sounds like a perfect match to me.

    Like

  269. 283 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    MLBTR: Buster Olney expressed doubt that the Orioles would re-sign Nelson Cruz this winter. The O’s are more likely to let Cruz go and pick up an extra draft pick (via the qualifying offer) since Cruz’s big season may have made him too expensive for Baltimore. If the team looks for a right-handed bat to replace Cruz, Olney opines that the Braves’ Evan Gattis, rumored to be a trade candidate, would be a perfect fit as the Orioles’ new designated hitter.

    Like

  270. 284 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    V, it’s true we are spoiled as braves fans….we expect them to compete each and every year…and…they usually do.
    But, I think what burns my britches this year, is the pitching , after losing Medlen and Beachy(granted, Beachy didn’t really pitch last year, but was expected to be a starter this year) the starting pitching had no right to be as good as it has been this year. And it’s been wasted.
    It’s hard for me to give credit to Wren getting Santana. No other team was willing to take a chance on him(really makes no sense, looking back) and the braves lucked out with him still being available, and that the Clark Howard like ownership actually opened the purse strings.
    Harang has a 4.23 era for his career. He’s 36, had a 5.40 ERA last year(but had a 3.52 ERA for 4 starts with the mutts) I think a fair bit of credit has to go to Roger McDowell….
    And while I was no fan of BJ signing with the braves, (.246 ba was the “best” of his last 4 seasons in Tampa) I did expect him to hit 20 + HR’s drive in 70 +, play steller defense , steal some bases…and be in a friendly competition with his bro(perhaps in the HR department) Plus, playing in front of fans….people in the seats. He would get more adrenalin flowing.
    Nope…
    Didn’t know they were in the running for Span….would have helped the braves, hurt the nats. Seem to recall, like the Phils CF, neither guy cost much in prospects..and that is Wren’s fault.
    Team would have 7-10 Mil extra to play with for the next 3 years. Instead, an albatross to get rid of that will end up costing the team dearly in prospects, if they can’t just man up admit a massive mistake, and pay BJ to not play with the Bravos….

    Like

  271. 285 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Span cost a top rated single A pitching prospect.

    Like

  272. 286 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    J.D Martinez…interesting name. Could he just be a late bloomer, a-la Raul Ibanez? Or is he just a 1 good season guy, that teams headed to the playoffs often get(You know, career year guy out of nowhere)
    Has potential, that’s for sure.
    But, Gattis in Left might hit 30 next year. Again, is the team really better off then?
    Olney opines that the Braves’ Evan Gattis, rumored to be a trade candidate, would be a perfect fit as the Orioles’ new designated hitter.
    I am sure he would be! Thing is, I would really like to see a perfect fit…for the braves. 😛
    from an article before the season…
    Duquette Administration has made progress with the farm system. The Orioles boast intriguing pitching depth but need more bats.
    http://www.minorleagueball.com/2014/1/26/5336980/baltimore-orioles-top-20-prospects-for-2014
    Ok…the top hitting prospect was a 27 year old…

    Like

  273. 287 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Well, braves made it interesting at least…
    Nats have gone from being the brave’s Daddy, to being the Brave’s Daddy 😦

    Like

  274. 288 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 10:23 pm

    … Alex Meyer. He is a pretty highly rated pitcher. He’s the Twins’ top pitching prospect, but has had some shoulder issues. Still, it was maybe equal to trading Lucas Sims. Frank has all but said Sims is untouchable. Trading Sims could be like trading Adam Wainright all over again, and nobody wants to see that.

    Like

  275. 289 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    tru dat, don’t want to give up the farm…again.
    Perhaps it’s the guy the Phils gave up for whosits…Phils never seem to have anyone good in the organization anymore. And won’t trade anyone for prospects. Odd.

    Even though they said 18 K at the park, didn’t even look like half of that…

    Joe and Chip didn’t mention it, but Brian Jordan and whosits 2 mentioned BJ didn’t get out of the box quickly, and cost him 1st base. Can’t expect a guy getting 15 Mil a year, and having a 2nd bad year, to bust it out of the box every single game. 😡

    Like

  276. 290 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 11:01 pm

    He did have some good AB’s tonight, though.

    Like

  277. 291 Vox O'Raison September 15, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    Phils got Revere for Vance Worley and a decent pitching prospect named Trevor May. Worley is awful, but May is already contributing at the MLB level. Twins did OK.

    Like

  278. 292 berigan2electricboogaloo September 15, 2014 at 11:31 pm

    Looks like Worley has turned it around with the Pirates(after being purchased from the Twins) 3.18 ERA,
    Trevor May, on the other hand…7.71 ERA for the Twins. Typical lousy phils “prospect”

    Like

  279. 293 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 8:11 am

    This morning’s NL Wild Card update:

    S F 82-68 +3.0
    Pitts 79-70 —
    Milw 78-72 -1.5
    Atl 75-75 -4.5

    Like

  280. 294 berigan2electricboogaloo September 16, 2014 at 9:01 am

    V, I think you are going to get your wish, the team is going to fade away very quickly.
    Didn’t realize is but J Up is only hitting .146 for September….

    Like

  281. 295 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 9:31 am

    Was red hot in August, and ice cold in September. He is so inconsistent. Can’t say the same for JHey. He is consistent… consistently mediocre at the plate.

    I don’t get it. He’s so immensely talented. He has all the tools of a Dave Winfield. He hits the ball as hard as anyone I’ve ever seen. Remember how everyone used to say the ball just sounded different when he hit it? He can hit to all fields with power, and can run like a deer. So why does he have only 11 HR and 58 RBI? He’s hitting a semi-respectable .274, and even has a decent OBP of .353. But this guy has to produce more runs.

    According to BaseballHeatMaps.com, his average flyball distance is 267 feet, more than 20 feet less than his averages from either 2012 or 2013. Where did his power go? Is it because he’s hit leadoff so much this season that he has altered his approach at the plate? I know this team needs a leadoff hitter, but they need a run producer more.

    Batting 1st and batting 5th are entirely different things. Maybe that’s why JUp has cooled so much in September. Gattis has been out and he’s had a variety of JHey, Doumit, Laird and CJohnson batting behind him. If I were a pitcher, I wouldn’t throw him anything to hit either.

    Like

  282. 296 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 9:57 am

    What was your impression of Gosselin thus far? What about TLS?

    I see that Fredi is using September to evaluate both Goss and TLS. I love TLS’s approach at the plate. he is a pure contact hitter, and well suited for the 2 hole in someone’s lineup. But I think I like Gosselin’s overall game better. He’s a better and more versatile fielder (TLS can only really play 2B and in an Ugglan manner); both have similar numbers. But Goss is another RH… and we are so overloaded with RH hitters.

    My take:

    I think TLS could be traded and Goss kept around to play 2B early in 2015, and as the next in the line of Infante/Prado/Pena super-subs when Jose Peraza arrives. And I think the club will give Peraza a chance to win the 2B and leadoff jobs in spring, but are looking more to a 2nd half call-up with Peraza spending the early part of 2015 in AAA Gwinnett. As for Ramiro Pena, his season has been a total disappointment. They could choose to trade or non-tender him, and keep both Goss and TLS. I don’t think they’ll pay Pena’s arb number given the presence of both youngsters.

    Much will depend on Peraza. He was slated to participate in the Arizona Fall League where he could be more closely evaluated by Braves muckety mucks, but instead opted to play winter ball in his native Venezuela. Alot of what the Braves choose to do in 2015 could hinge on what Peraza looks like over this winter. I’m sure they would have much preferred to see him in the AFL, but it is what it is.

    I cannot imagine the 20-year-old Peraza making the jump from AA to the bigs, but we’ve seen it before in Rafael Furcal. It should be noted, however, that Furcal was a couple of years older than initially believed.

    Like

  283. 297 Gil in Mechanicsville September 16, 2014 at 10:18 am

    Fredi G says the league has figured out Tommy LaStella. Seems to me, they have figured out the rest of the Braves too….

    I stopped watching after the Braves failed to score with Heyward on third with no outs. Just too exasperating for me to deal with right now.

    On Gattis, I’ll bet money it’s mono… He is done for the season. Looks like the Nats will clinch the division in Atlanta this year… In the words of the immortal JJS, “Oh, the humanity”!

    Liked by 1 person

  284. 298 Gil in Mechanicsville September 16, 2014 at 10:21 am

    One more comment on Melvin. He suffers from the same attitude as his old idol, Allen Iverson… Million dollar talent with a 50 cent brain…

    Like

  285. 299 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:15 am

    The new Braves stadium in Cobb County will be names SunTrust Park.

    Like

  286. 300 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:16 am

    names er, named

    Like

  287. 301 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:19 am

    JS says that the new park will not be a “pitcher’s park” nor a “hitter’s park”, but rather uniquely favor both. Not sure how that works, but whatever…

    Like

  288. 302 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:21 am

    I hope the Braves acquire or develop some hitters before then.

    Liked by 1 person

  289. 303 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:33 am

    Re: SunTrust Park.

    If I heard correctly, the Braves and SunTrust reached a 25 year deal on the naming rights. Not sure if they revealed the $$ amount; I tuned in late just as they unveiled the name. Just knowing that a new source of revenue is available is encouraging. I’d really like to know how soon that revenue stream will be available and impact team spending. For instance, will the team now be able to afford to retain both JUp and JHey after 2015? Sure would like to…

    Like

  290. 304 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Wow… just got a look at the renderings of the new park, inside and out. If it looks like that, it’s really going to be something. Beautiful. JS mentioned it, and I saw it on the renderings – they have brought the field level down the lines in the outfield. It really puts the fans out close to the action. Very cool.

    Like

  291. 306 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 11:47 am

    Here’s something I noticed… there is a picture in one of the renderings that shows a JHey image being featured at an entrance, and a “fan” walking around with a JHey jersey on. Does that indicate what the team’s plans are regarding JHey after 2015? Hmmm…

    Like

  292. 307 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Mark Bradley, ajc:

    The Braves have worked 104 quality starts, seven more than any other team in baseball and two more than they did all of last season, when they led the National League — and they’ve won 75 games. Roughly speaking, they’ve lost 29 games that should have been winnable for a team with even an average offense.

    No, you’re not going to win every single well-pitched game. But say the Braves had gone 14-15 in those 29 games. Know where they’d be? Occupying first place in the National League East, three games ahead of Washington.

    According to Baseball Prospectus, they now hold a 2.7 percent chance of advancing to October.

    Holy smokes!

    Like

  293. 308 berigan2electricboogaloo September 16, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    thanks for the link V…looks nice. And…well, small. Couldn’t find how many it seats , have you heard? Hope it’s not too much of a pitchers park, that might make JHey and J Up think about playing elsewheres…

    As for JHey…I do know what you mean. He is a great fielder, most everyone says the best Right fielder in the game. And have heard he wants to be the best. Now surely, he wants to be a great hitter…but right now, he is just a good one, slightly above average batting average/obp wise. But, how do you go half a month without a homer? 4 doubles?
    Just checking noted hothead Yasiel Puig’s stats…35 Doubles. JHey, 25 is Puig that good a runner? Nope, 9 steals, caught 7 times. Jhey 19 out of 23.
    But, as streaky as Puig is, he seems to forever be putting the ball in the air, hitting off walls, or gapping it at least. And of course, he runs with abandon(and does get thrown out a bit) JHey, seems to have mastered a sinking liner to right… a single…Like you said, does he have an different approach to leading off? I know he doesn’t like it, from what I have read, but dang, don’t change your approach. As a hitter, you always want to get on base, right? You have to take pitches in this league, or they will kill ya(I sure wish Chris Johnson got that, 4 for 36, for a .111 average in Sept, hey FG, did the league figure him out too?) So being selective won’t hurt him…but….his swing still looks odd to me. His stance. He looks 6-10, like he’s just too big a guy to be a hitter.
    I just wish he’d go back to how he batted, exactly like he did his rookie year.

    Like

  294. 309 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    If I were GM, and apparently I have about as good a chance as Frank after 2014, my offseason “to do” list would start with:

    #1: I would trade JUp as soon as possible. I would not wait until mid-2015; I would not take the draft pick as compensation when he walks after 2015. I’d trade him and I’d trade him early in the off-season before the market really gets glutted. he is a supremely talented player albeit streaky. He has alot of value. I’d trade him.

    #2: I would resign JHey. I still think he’s a great player, and can be greater yet. He is still relatively young. I think he does alot between the lines besides just hitting to that wins games. I know they wanted to lock him up long term prior to this season and that his reps pushed for more money than the Braves were willing to go. Maybe they can come to an accord this off-season.

    #3: I’d trade BJ and cut my losses. The money is a lost cause, so you might as well maximize your chances of winning. BJ must be gone.

    #4: I’d trade Gattis and get as much as I can back in return. I’ve got to replace 2/3 of my OF, and between JUp and Gattis, I ought to be able to get a leadoff hitter and CF/LF.

    Once those 4 items are checked off, I have a clearer idea of what the next items will be and can focus on the next phase…

    Like

  295. 310 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    And one more thing…

    They are celebrating the new stadium today with much fanfare and excitement. All parties from Terry McGuirk to Derek Schiller to John Schuerholz to Frank Wren know that they have to have something really exciting and appealing moving in. They have new revenue streams coming online. I think they are going to have to make a splash somewhere down the line. Via trade? Via FA? I just sense they will do something big sooner than later.

    Maybe that’s just me and my rosy outlook, or perhaps it’s heartburn. Regardless, I hope they make forward moves and not lateral moves for the sake of change.

    Like

  296. 311 Gil in Mechanicsville September 16, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    This year just has to go down a the epitome of underachievement. Too many cases of just missing for the Braves and just falling in for the opposition. Too many laid back personalities on one club and the one guy who really gave a crap they muzzled him and sat him down.

    Unless you have supreme talent, you have to play with some heart….

    This team has collectively given up, period… Slumped shoulders abound..

    Like

  297. 312 Vox O'Raison September 16, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    2nite’s lineup: (and apparently Fredi’s “go to” down the stretch)

    1- Goss, 2B
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- JHey, RF
    6- B’court, C
    7- CJohn, 3B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- A-a-ron Harang, RHP

    Like

  298. 313 berigan2electricboogaloo September 16, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    P……………………U………………………

    Liked by 1 person

  299. 314 Gil in Mechanicsville September 17, 2014 at 8:23 am

    That pretty much sums it up Ber….

    Great performance by Harang wasted by a no show offense…. Where is Hunter Pence when we need him?

    Liked by 1 person

  300. 315 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 8:55 am

    It’s just as well. No need wasting any time or resources on false hopes. This way we can get going on the shakeup in just 2 weeks.

    Like

  301. 316 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 9:46 am

    As disappointing as this season most certainly is, I have to remind myself that the team is not the D’Backs or Phillies. In fact, if you just back up one season to 2013, the Nats were experiencing alot of what we are going through right now.

    This team does have talent… especially pitching talent. Our starters have literally been among the best in all of baseball. And if you look at the lineup, with few exceptions, there is talent sprinkled in and amongst it. So before I go jumping off any bridges, I am going to wait and see what adjustments are made this off-season. I think Fredi is a 50/50 bet to be back. He has 11 very important games left to show that his team has not quit on him.

    If you asked me just a couple of days ago (which you did) if I thought Frank was in danger, I would have thoughtfully and carefully laid out my stance… which I did. But a couple of things have come to light since then that makes me reconsider at least a small amount. According to local media and club sources, Frank is not an easy guy to get along with, which has led to a couple of top aides bolting to other clubs. That could prove to be troublesome, especially when the man’s own mistakes have been so glaringly bad. And given that he has not proven the ability to recognize his own errors, his handpicked manager is probably safe unless Frank himself is let go. So I also give Frank about a 50/50 chance to return as well – and that is loosely tied to Fredi. If there is no justification to keep Fredi, there may be no justification to keep Frank either.

    11 games…

    Like

  302. 317 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Unfathomable.

    Like

  303. 318 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 11:42 am

    BTW- Something is going on with Gattis that isn’t getting pub. You don’t miss 8 games in September with strep throat. Especially when 3 of those only required that he stride to the plate 4 times and sit the rest of the game. Mono? Something more serious? Something physically that they are trying to mask so as not to hurt any prospective trade value?

    i don’t know what it is, but I know it ain’t strep throat.

    Like

  304. 319 berigan2electricboogaloo September 17, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    V, hmmm…I sure hope Gattis isn’t seriously ill!

    And Mark Bradley was talking about FG and Wren too…
    http://markbradley.blog.ajc.com/2014/09/17/whos-to-blame-for-this-september-braves-flop/?ecmp=ajc_social_twitter_2014_braves_sfp

    Like

  305. 320 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    The Braves have been shut out 14 games thus far in 2014… scored 1 run 22 times and scored 2 runs 20 times. Holy smokes! That’s 2 or fewer in 56 games! That’s over a third of the season. Wow. 😯

    Like

  306. 321 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    Peter Gammons:

    Speculation had been centered on the futures of Frank Wren and Fredi Gonzalez long before the Nationals clinched in Turner Field, making the Braves 58-69 since April 27. Bobby Cox remains a staunch Gonzalez defender, and despite leading the league in quality starts—helped by Wren picking up Ervin Santana and Aaron Harang after losing three-fifths of their rotation—the offense has been dreadful, second-to-last in the league in runs.

    John Hart, who is one of John Schuerholz’s closest friends, may be asked to oversee the baseball operation, maybe as GM, maybe as an overseer, as was his role in Texas with Jon Daniels, as it appears John Coppolella is a prime young GM candidate.

    Hmmm… interesting. It seems that this talk of Frank being on the hot seat is really picking up steam. (See what I did there..? Heat? Steam?) Anyway, I still maintain these last 11 games are paramount to Frank and/or Fredi keeping their positions.

    Like

  307. 322 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    2nite’s lineup… again. Apparently it is Fredi’s “go to” down the stretch.

    1- Goss, 2B
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- JHey, RF
    6- B’court, C
    7- CJohn, 3B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Alex Wood, LHP

    Why not? It has worked so well in these other games against the Nats. 🙄

    (Is there a sarcasm font?)

    Liked by 1 person

  308. 323 Gil in Mechanicsville September 17, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    As for Gattis having something seriously wrong, it would be discovered by a team during the pre-trade physicals so that is not it. Nope, I think it is Mono. It takes about 6 months to recover from it. O’Flararty came down with it too. Could be something else, just a real shame for everybody.

    Now the Fredi/Frank saga…. Hey, those folks see the same things we do and besides, they have someone gleaning the internet for all of our collective wisdom…. 🙂

    Anyway, Having a guy like John Hart in the wings sure allows for a lot of maneuvering on the executive front. I predict the first announcement will be the hiring of a new hitting coach. It sure turned the gNats around this summer. I still think Terry Pendenton deserves a shot.

    Like

  309. 324 Vox O'Raison September 17, 2014 at 5:04 pm

    I still think Terry Pendenton deserves a shot.

    Me too… as manager. 😉

    Like

  310. 325 Gil in Mechanicsville September 17, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Yes, as manager… Sorry if I cut myself on that, it was implied but not clearly stated.

    Like

  311. 327 Vox O'Raison September 18, 2014 at 10:07 am

    Morning all…

    It’s nice to wake up after a Braves victory, but it doesn’t change the complexion of this disappointing season. So, back to the speculation.

    The more I think about it, and the more I read about John Coppolella, the more I like Gammons’ suggestion – “John Hart, who is one of John Schuerholz’s closest friends, may be asked to oversee the baseball operation, maybe as GM, maybe as an overseer, as was his role in Texas with Jon Daniels, as it appears John Coppolella is a prime young GM candidate.”

    Why not give Hart a role similar to Larussa in ARI? Make him VP of Baseball Operations, and give him the task of overseeing the new young GM. Coppolella is a hot name, and will surely be tapped to be the GM somewhere in the next couple of years if not here. In ATL, he has overseen the pro scouting dept. That’s be the staff that brought in EOF, Harang, Carpenter, Laird, etc.

    Baseball Prospectus has him listed 1st in their “Top 10 names to know” among rising GM candidates. They have this to say:

    Candidate: John Coppolella
    Current role: Assistant General Manager (Braves)
    Skill set: A rising star in the industry for some time, the former student manager for the Notre Dame football team has injected the characteristics of winning into his DNA through nearly 15 years experience with the two most successful franchises in the modern era (Yankees/Braves). Coppolella is fluent in both the esoteric language of scouting (he still directs pro scouting for the Braves) and the importance of advanced statistical analysis, a marriage of information management that would allow him to thrive at the helm of a team as a younger upside play. It’s an eventuality that both the writers at Baseball Prospectus (he received the most votes) and his peers in the industry think happens sooner rather than later.

    I’m ready. Frank has had his time and brought us to this point. I appreciate that. Thinking about this season makes my head hurt. BJ makes my head hurt. Reading about Frank’s inability to get along with top pitching instructor Dave Wallace and top scout Dom Chiti, leading to their departure for other clubs, was the straw that broke this camel’s back.

    What about Fredi? Does he deserve a chance to manage a team that is not so flawed? Ugh… I think I grudgingly have to say “yes”. He has been dealt a pretty rotten hand this season. When a manager continues to spend hours trying to put together a lineup at game 150 of the season, he has problems. And he has managed the pitchers and bullpen much better this season. Maybe one more year…

    Like

  312. 328 Gil in Mechanicsville September 18, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    When you look at the core team of Braves players, one has to realize that other than the loss of two prospective starters and Jonny Venters, This was the team assembled by Frank Wren.

    He had a choice of keeping O’Flararty or Venters and picked wrong…

    Now we don’t really know all the trapping of the behind the scene working of a ball club but money certainly has a lot to do with it. As for being able to play well with others…. we only know what we hear but evidently other folks hear plenty.

    Freddie has to play the hand he is dealt but who knew, other than the White Sox, the cards were being dealt from the bottom of the deck when it cam to out current hitting instructors?

    I am beginning to think it is a case of too many cooks spoiling the soup. Just because a guy works hard, does not mean he knows what to work hard at. Just saying…. It has been my experience that the guy who has to stay up late trying to figure things out is still trying to figure out what it is he is suppose to know to begin with. Just saying….

    as a guy on the outside looking in, I still say JS was demoted upstairs because of the Texiera trade… It really set back the club for 5 years. Same might be said of Wren signing BJ Upton…. For a club that is hamstung for cash, big free agents that don’t work out can box you into a corner pretty quick. Worse, it can keep you there…

    Like

  313. 329 berigan2electricboogaloo September 18, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    Gil, not funny! 😉
    I thought he had some new drug issue….
    V, making John Hart VP of Baseball Operations sounds good to me. Honestly, with Wren, I could have cut him some slack with the Uggla signing alone. He had one very good year (hey, 36 HR’s no one has hit that many since he did that in 2011, correct?) and drove in 78 RBI’s the next year. Who could imagine he would hit .149 at the age of 34?
    But, the BJ signing was strange…15 for a some .250 hitter? Who else does that? White Sox with Dunn? That’s about it.
    And now you report those 2 key guys leaving…that could really damage the organization for years to come(and it’s not like we have real hope, offensively in the future except for the 2nd baseman)
    Shoulda gone with Dayton Moore

    Like

  314. 330 berigan2electricboogaloo September 18, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    15 MIL for some SUB .250 hitter….left out a few words…or abbv 😛

    Like

  315. 331 Gil in Mechanicsville September 18, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    Not saying these things were all Wren’s fault but let’s look at Frank’s track record on Free Agents/Trades

    Derek Lowe… Well, it could have been worse, he could have signed AJ Burnett…

    Kershin Kawkami… Wow, super dud…. from the get go….

    Aaron Harang… Lucky strike, does he really count? He was like found money…

    Ervin Santana… Hey, he could have signed with Baltimore, I wonder if Magic is kicking himself right now….. Wren had little choice for the Braves to be viable in the pitching department. That said, they could have kept Hudson for the same money.

    BJ Upton which ultimately led to signing Justin Upton. Who could have seen that coming? After all, the guy did have one good month while with Tampa Bay.

    Dan Uggla…. While not really a Free Agent, he was close and the Braves only had to give up Omar Infante’ (All-star) and Dunn who is the lefty specialist they have needed desperately.

    Frank’s record with low priced talent has been pretty good, high dollar talent, not so much.

    Like

  316. 332 Gil in Mechanicsville September 18, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    So, in the broad scheme of things, one thing always remains constant, when you go all in (Braves signing Santana, thus going over budget) and falling flat on you face, somebody has to fall on their sword and take the blame.

    Only real question is who will still be around after the dust settles?

    Terry P? Eddie Perez? Roger McDowell? I think everybody else better be dusting off their resume’s and brushing up on their interviewing skills…..

    Like

  317. 333 Vox O'Raison September 18, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    Well, I don’t think there is any chance of Walker/Fletcher returning to their co-hitting coach duties. That’s pretty easy. Unless Terry McGuirk does some major surgery, such as John Schuerholz, there won’t be a major house cleaning. TP is safe. EP is safe. Doug Dascenzo… who cares? Roger McDowell is probably the highest respected coach in the organization. He’s safe… and could be considered for manager IMO. Fredi is 50/50, and thus his 1st mate Carlos Tosca is 50/50.

    In my fantasy world, new GM John Coppo… Copa… John C would hire TP as manager, who would then make EP his bench coach. Roger would remain as pitching coach. They would start fresh with 1B and 3B coaches. The bullpen coach should be some crusty old baseball guy who has been around since before Don Zimmer was a rookie that spits tobacco juice all over the place. As for the new hitting coach, who is not a fantasy but a likely reality, I don’t have any idea. The last good one we had was Don Baylor.

    Liked by 2 people

  318. 334 Gil in Mechanicsville September 18, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    As for the new hitting coach, who is not a fantasy but a likely reality,

    So Chipper is out… 🙂

    How about Dale Murphy? He could use the work….

    I wonder if Bobby Dews would like the bullpen job? Yes, there was a reason Bobby always mentions Jimi Williams.

    I know the first and third base coaches have other responsibilities but for the life of me, I don’t know what.

    Here is the thing, hitting coaches need to remind hitters to stay within themselves. There is a reason the shift is employed on so many homerun hitters. Giving up a base hit is a victory when facing a bopper. Unless that person was Dan Uggla but he did get a lot of walks before everyone got in his head to the point he could not hit water while falling out of a boat.

    Right now, I think the entire team has chucked it. The are so befuddled they don’t know what to do.

    Like

  319. 335 Vox O'Raison September 19, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Interesting facts via DOB: From ’91-’05, Braves won 90 or more games in every full season except 1 (88 wins in ’01). And during the period from ’93-’03, Braves surpassed 100 wins 6 times in 9 full seasons.

    Good times.

    Like

  320. 336 Gil in Mechanicsville September 19, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    So, a quick trip around the bloggasphere reveals the Braves are not the only example of abject failure this season. They are joined in no particular order by the Brewers, the Athletics, the Red Sox, the Yankees and Texas. We know the reasons for some, not so clear as to others but all will be taking October off.

    Each and every club can point to an absence of a key playmaker(s) at a a crucial point in the season. Okay, for some. it started on day one (the Diamondbacks) but still…. I predict a lot of finger pointing to take place.

    Perhaps the most unfair would be Ron Washington of the Rangers. Anyone really think it was his fault the Rangers all got hurt?

    Perhaps I can parlay the idea into a lead….

    Like

  321. 337 berigan2electricboogaloo September 19, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    Gil, actually Ron Washington stepped down for personal reasons.

    Like

  322. 338 Vox O'Raison September 19, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Ron Washington’s “personal reasons” was an extra-marital affair. Scoundrel.

    Like

  323. 339 Vox O'Raison September 19, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Like

  324. 340 Vox O'Raison September 19, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    2nite’s lineup:

    1- Goss, 3B
    2- Simba, SS
    3- Free, 1B
    4- JUp, LF
    5- B’court, C
    6- Dadgoumit, RF
    7- TLS, 2B
    8- BJ, CF
    9- Julio Teheran, RHP

    Like

  325. 341 berigan2electricboogaloo September 19, 2014 at 6:36 pm

    V, believe it or not, I hadn’t heard about that today, was just remembering the story from weeks back…amazing that came out today 😕

    Like

  326. 343 Gil in Mechanicsville September 20, 2014 at 10:47 am

    Last night’s line up for the Braves was not one to strike fear in the hearts of an opposing pitcher, At Wheeler had the good sense to pitch around Fredi Freeman, something Teheran did not appear to understand when he hung a breaking ball to the one guy who could really hurt him in Lucas Duda. Something he should learn from Aaron Harang in that it is okay to pitch around a hitter to get to a guy who you own….

    I guess that could sum up the youthful inexperience of this Braves team. Thinking with their heart way more often than with their heads.

    Once it was 2 zip, the Braves were done… sad… but when you cannot score, you cannot win….

    I had not heard that about Ron Washington… too bad, not the first to think with the little head, won’t be the last….

    Liked by 1 person

  327. 344 berigan2electricboogaloo September 20, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Yep, when the Mutts got those 2 runs, I gave up…Mutts really have some good, hard throwing starters, they are going to be harder and harder to beat in the next few years. Sigh…

    Fun little article by Jayson Stark on 3 potential batting champs in the NL
    http://espn.go.com/blog/jayson-stark/post/_/id/937/batting-champs

    Like

  328. 345 Vox O'Raison September 20, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Like

  329. 346 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    Rather have one guy to answer to than be hamstrung with being second guessed all the time. Better to let the guy go than to have someone always looking over his shoulder. Just the way life is….

    Last night’s game had all the look of a team simply playing out the string rather than clawing their way into the playoffs. You would think that team to be the Mutts but the Braves are pulling dirt over themselves at this point.

    Looks like the Pirates will have the last laugh this season…. Bonny sure had himself a night however.

    Every time I hear Jason Bays’ name mentioned, I cannot help but think of BJ Upton… At this point, who would want that cancer in their clubhouse? He cannot get along with his own brother…

    Like

  330. 347 berigan2electricboogaloo September 21, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    Did you guys see FF interview after the game? He’s clearly disgusted, and ready for the season to end.
    Next year, the surfer dude may take a much stronger leadership role, by necessity

    Like

  331. 348 Gil in Mechanicsville September 21, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    Much is learned from losing…. Mistakes not to be made again…. Well, for most folks anyway, some like Melvin start “phoning it in ” around mid May. Just saying.

    The talk now is if Wren will even be allowed to finish the season with only six games to go. That is akin to calling a guy off the field after the inning starts. Perhaps they will want to make the changes before they are barred from doing so during the play-offs.

    I think the one thing folks are unsure about is whether or not Fredi G stays or is let go. I think it really all depends on who is chosen as the new GM.

    Like

  332. 349 Vox O'Raison September 21, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    With all due respect to fat women everywhere, I hear one of you singing. 🙄

    Liked by 1 person

  333. 350 Vox O'Raison September 21, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    Mrs Raisins has stated it so eloquently: “They suck.”

    Like

  334. 351 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Well, I had submitted a nice, thoughtful and detailed exhortation as a lead possibility detailing why the Braves needed to clean house today, and darned if they didn’t fire Frank before it could be published. Ha ha ha…

    I’m just glad the “fixing” has begun.

    Like

  335. 352 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 11:39 am

    Like

  336. 353 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 11:39 am

    Like

  337. 354 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 11:41 am

    From DOB:

    Fredi Gonzalez, who has also drawn much criticism from fans during the second September collapse in his four seasons as manager, was spared the ax, at least for now while a search for a new GM is underway. At a minimum, there are expected to be several changes made to Gonzalez’s coaching staff.

    Like

  338. 355 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    Director of Player Personnel Bruce Manno has also been fired.

    Like

  339. 356 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Watching the press conference…

    JS emphasizes that he and Bobby worked closely together as GM and Manager for almost 20 years in “the Braves way”. Perhaps a backhanded reference to what now appears to be a difficulty for staff to get along with Frank?

    Like

  340. 357 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Continuing references to “the Braves way”…

    Like

  341. 358 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    They have not spoken with Fredi… are taking their time to assess all operations.

    Like

  342. 359 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    JS emphasizes that a new GM should have a say in who manages.

    [No surprise there.]

    Like

  343. 360 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Continuing references to “the Braves way”… JS says he and Bobby spoke of it often during the season that “the Braves way” was being lost. Says it is a cumulative effect over time. Says it need to be “reinvigorated”.

    Like

  344. 361 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    Again referring to “the Braves way”. Was asked to define it… character and makeup mentioned prominently.

    Like

  345. 362 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Bobby Cox has just vocally backed Fredi. Says he has done a “remarkable job under the circumstances”.

    Like

  346. 363 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    “Leadership” finally brought up as an intangible quality when asked about analytics as a part of what they will be looking for.

    Like

  347. 364 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    “The Braves way” mentioned again. I think I sense a theme…

    Like

  348. 365 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    When specifically asked, Bobby said that Fredi “absolutely” has his vote of confidence.

    Like

  349. 366 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    And it’s done. Very informative. It is obvious that Frank has been going against “the Braves way” for longer than just a couple of months. I get the feeling that he was already under the microscope, and the epic collapse of 2014 was the final nail in his coffin.

    His allowing David Ross, Eric Hinske, Brian McCann and Tim Hudson to all depart without replacing their leadership was his biggest cardinal sin.

    One thing JS was very intentional in doing was NOT blaming players like BJ, Justin and Uggla. He said that all the FOT’s (front office types) examine all the analytics and data and numbers and scouting reports, etc before making a big acquisition. He also says that players themselves are constantly evolving… some for the better, and some for the worse. Said obviously BJ and Uggla were examples of the latter.

    So here is what I take from the whole thing. They didn’t throw Frank under the bus too badly, but it was made very clear that he ceased doing things “the Braves way” and that it cost him his job. They also will not say anything negatively about remaining staff or players… regardless of what they may feel privately. For Bobby to almost go out of his way to back Fredi tells me that. Nobody can truly say that Fredi has done a “remarkable job” and seriously mean it. No, it’s more of Bobby’s way of deflecting negativity while things are being handled behind the scenes.

    Honestly, I don”t see any way the next GM will keep Fredi around. And I think the only reason Fredi wasn’t also shown the door today is the fact that he was dealt a crappy hand by the guys already shown the door. Let’s not forget that Frank’s right hand man Bruce Manno was also in the first wave of bloodletting. But I believe that they are expanding their GM search to beyond just the previously mentioned John Coppolella and Dayton Moore. JS himself says he believes it’s a high profile job that will attract many candidates. he also says he does not expect it to take a long time. He mentioned more than once that they are driven by “the baseball calendar” and that they need to have their leadership in place by the GM meetings scheduled just a month or so away.

    Like

  350. 367 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    It occurs to me… now that the GM and Director of Player Personnel are being replaced, it will certainly mean that some prior decisions and directions will be adjusted as well. It makes me wonder if Jose Peraza could now see some development in the OF? It makes me wonder if JHey’s contract status may be approached with a more aggressive approach?

    One thing is certain: BJ will be dumped and the new guy has the freedom to say, “Hey, I know we’re eating alot of money, but I didn’t bring the bum here.”

    I wonder, too, if David Ross could be brought back as BUC given this team’s black hole in leadership, and the Red Sox’ recent indications that they will not try and re-sign him for 2015. Laird’s deal is done, and he hasn’t really performed at anything beyond just passable as a backup this season. And given the aforementioned dearth of leadership, he didn’t contribute a hole lot there either.

    Is it time yet to toss up the 25 man roster and begin to speculate as to who could be traded, released, or simply allowed to walk? I do have a little time on my hands today…

    Like

  351. 368 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Here we go with the 25 man roster, plus major leaguers on the DL, and their contract status.

    Starting 8:
    F. Freeman (L), 1B – through 2021
    A. Simmons, (R), SS – through 2020
    C. Johnson (R), 3B – through 2017 w/ team option 2018
    M. Upton (R), CF – through 2017
    J. Upton (R), LF – through 2015
    J. Heyward, (L), RF – through 2015
    E. Gattis (R), C – arb in 2016
    P. Gosselin (R), 2B – arb in 2018

    Rotation:
    E. Santana (RH) – FA 2015
    A. Harang (RH) – FA 2015
    J. Teheran (RH) – through 2019 w/ team option 2020
    M. Minor (LH) – 2nd year arb
    A. Wood (LH) – arb in 2016

    Bullpen:
    C. Kimbrel (RH), Closer – through 2017 w/ team option 2018
    J. Russell (LH), Mid – 3rd year arb
    J. Walden (RH), Setup – 2nd year arb
    D. Carpenter (RH), Setup – 1st year arb
    A. Varvaro (RH), Mid – 1st year arb
    L. Avilan (LH), Mid – arb in 2016
    D. Hale (LH), Long – arb in 2017

    Bench:
    G. Laird (R), C – FA 2015
    R. Doumit (S), OF/1B/C – FA 2015
    E. Bonifacio (S), OF/2B/3B/SS – FA 2015
    R. Pena (S), 2B/3B/SS – 3rd year arb
    T. La Stella (L), 2B – arb in 2018
    C. Bethancourt (R), C – arb in 2018, *Sept. callup

    DL:
    G. Floyd (RH), SP – FA 2015
    K. Medlen (RH), SP – 3rd year arb
    J. Venters (LH), RP – 3rd year arb
    B. Beachy (RH), SP – 2nd year arb

    Like

  352. 369 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Let the speculation and discussion begin…

    Like

  353. 370 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    Like

  354. 371 berigan2electricboogaloo September 22, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    V, Blog dominator!!! (It might be a word, should be if it isn’t)

    One thing is certain: BJ will be dumped and the new guy has the freedom to say, “Hey, I know we’re eating alot of money, but I didn’t bring the bum here.”
    Good point.
    Wonder if signings like Chris Johnson also got them a-wonderin’ about the speed the GM made signings….

    Liked by 1 person

  355. 372 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    Dang, word press ate my comments… Will try again later.

    Like

  356. 373 Vox O'Raison September 22, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    Wonder if signings like Chris Johnson also got them a-wonderin’ about the speed the GM made signings

    Funny you mention Chris Johnson and his contract. I have heard that criticized since he hit his late season swoon, yet the consensus among talking heads and so called experts seems to be that he actually has a very affordable and tradeable contract.

    Then again, I’m not sure that we’d want to trade him anyway. For one, we don’t have anyone n the pipeline close enough to taking over. And secondly, I don’t think he is as bad a hitter as he has been much of this season, in much the same way I didn’t think he was as good a hitter as he was last season. If we can get some consistency in the middle, we should all be happy. Think about it… even though he doesn’t offer alot of power at a traditional power position, the high average and high OBP he gave us in 2013 is exactly what this team is lacking.

    I don’t think there’s any question they’ll rid themselves of BJ this offseason. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Justin traded either. What they need is for Jason to hit like he’s capable, and to fill in the other 2 spots with speed and contact. That would go a long way toward straightening out a screwy lineup.

    For instance, a leadoff hitter like maybe switch-hitting CF Dexter Fowler (from Houston, slashing .273/.371/.399) with LF J..D. Martinez (from Detroit, slashing .320/.363./570) batting behind him would be a far sight better than what we have right now. And with Houston having Jose Altuve locked in at their leadoff spot, they could part with Fowler. Wouldn’t Justin’s power translate nicely in that little league park? Just a thought… And while I love Justin when he is on – he’s one of the best when he’s on – when he’s off… ew.

    Now I’m not saying it has to be those guys specifically, but those types of hitters. Guys that can get on base and guys that can get a bat on the ball. It really isn’t rocket science. You have to have guys get on base before you can drive them in. The Braves have a flawed lineup full of middle or lower lineup hitters.

    Like

  357. 374 vaquietlife September 22, 2014 at 9:18 pm

    well the season over, or I could say it been over for months now, just someone forgot to tell the ones that showed up to play. Maybe in the off season they will make some much needed changes. More so then they did today. Well can’t wait for spring training. 🙂 Ms. Josie

    Like

  358. 375 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    Josie says it’s all my fault for getting Dan fired. Thus, the “curse” was placed upon the team and dang if it didn’t take////

    Liked by 1 person

  359. 376 Gil in Mechanicsville September 22, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    VOX, my take on Chris Johnson is he (and the Braves’ brain trust) messed him up when they put him in the four hole of the line up. He went away from spraying line drives to all fields to trying to hit home runs. Thus, the poor start and it got in his head. He never recovered. He is great as a seven hole guy or even a six on occasion but a “bopper” he is not, at least not at this stage of his career.

    Too many thoughts going thru a batter’s head and he is doomed… Kind of like a rookie who knows the strike zone and gets called out a lot on border line pitches Umpires are notorious for not wanting to be shown up.

    Anyway, watching another great performance by a Braves pitcher go for naught… Santana is right….

    Liked by 1 person

  360. 377 Vox O'Raison September 23, 2014 at 10:46 am

    Naturally…

    Like

  361. 378 Vox O'Raison September 23, 2014 at 10:52 am

    More Crasnick: Amid the Braves’ sorry performance, it’s hard to ignore the undercurrent of discord in the organization. When Bobby Cox gave his Hall of Fame induction speech in Cooperstown in late July and pointedly omitted Wren’s name on the list of people he wanted to thank, it publicly substantiated the notion that the relationship between the two men was beyond strained.

    Wren’s name was also glaringly missing from the guest list that circulated prior to the formal ground-breaking in Cobb County last week. Ironically, he did appear at the end of the program with one of the many shovels used to turn over the dirt. Kind of symbolic since he apparently had already dug his own professional grave.

    Like

  362. 379 Vox O'Raison September 23, 2014 at 11:19 am

    While publicly the new 3-headed cabal states that their search will be wide open and national in scope, chatter continues to surround 2 names, KC’s Dayton Moore and current Asst. GM John Coppolella.

    Moore was JS’s right hand man during the glory days and is well versed in The Braves Way. John was the “homeboy upstairs”, and Dayton was the “homeboy upstairs and 2 doors down”. KC’s owner has said publicly that he won’t stand in Moore’s way if he chooses to come back to ATL, but cannot imagine he would want to, given the Royals’ are standing on the doorstep of their first playoff appearance and are just barely realizing the fruits of many years of Moore’s laboring.

    It’s compelling argument.

    But this is, as our broadcasters said last night, a “plum” job. (A plum is a fruit, too… last time I checked.) It’s high profile and carries a proud tradition. Moore is already a part of that tradition and this would be akin to a conquering hero returning to the homeland.

    As for Coppolella, he’s a bright young rising star in the potential GM ranks. But as it is defined in the top of this current lead article on the ol’ B&S, potential means you ain’t done nuthin’ yet. Moore has a track record and a history. He also has a name, and let’s not forget that a huge part of this “transition” is to position this franchise for a cannonball splash moving into their new ballpark.

    Unless JS can convince John Hart to take the reigns full-time while Coppolella stays on as the GM-in-waiting, I can’t see a better candidate than Moore. And Hart as much as said in their presser yesterday that he isn’t interested in the job full-time. And Coppolella is so hard to consistently spell correctly.

    This fan can see the Braves doing their due diligence, interviewing many candidates, observing the diversity guidelines, and getting all their ducks in a row while the playoffs are progressing. And barring a stunning championship run by the Royals, this fan can see Dayton Moore being named the new Braves GM following the completion of the World Series.

    But I can also see the Braves appeasing some of their very vocal critics and going with some new blood, with Bobby Cox hanging around in a more prominent Senior Advisory role. Like him or not, Bobby has a very successful track record in player development. Do the names Tom Glavine, Steve Avery, Jeff Blauser, Pete Smith, Ron Gant, David Justice, Mark Wohlers, Kent Mercker, or Vinnie Castilla mean anything? Every one of those players was drafted under Bobby’s tenure as GM. It was Bobby who defied all conventional wisdom in 1990 and passed on consensus #1 pick, Todd Van Poppel, and instead drafted a virtually unknown kid named Chipper Jones with pick #1. And it was Bobby, not JS, who made the franchise changing trade of Doyle Alexander for John Smoltz. The guy does know a thing or two about personnel.

    I think I would be OK under either scenario. But if the Braves intend to have their GM in place and on the ground running by early November’s GM meetings, it almost has to be one of those 2 guys…

    Like

  363. 380 berigan2electricboogaloo September 23, 2014 at 11:22 am

    V, I noticed that in that article too…for all my issues with Bobby’s management style at the very end, it’s easy to see, an easy guy to get along with. And if Wren didn’t want to be friends/listen to a guy with all of his experience….nuts to him!

    Like

  364. 381 Vox O'Raison September 23, 2014 at 11:50 am

    I am now trying to focus on good things ahead, not so much on the grease fire that is on the field right now. I really don’t want to even mention another shutout… a stinking 1-0 defeat. (I personally think 1-0 is worse than a beatdown.) But did anyone else notice that when Bossman K’d to end the game (again) last night, he wasn’t wearing his glasses?

    Like

  365. 382 Vox O'Raison September 23, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    OK… from the list I detailed above, I am going to look into my crystal ball and pick out my “survivors”…

    “Go to” lineup:
    1- Jose Peraza (R), 2B
    2- TBD, CF
    3- F. Freeman (L), 1B
    4- TBD, LF
    5- J. Heyward, (L), RF
    6- C. Johnson (R), 3B
    7- C. Bethancourt (R), C
    8- A. Simmons, (R), SS

    Rotation:
    1- J. Teheran (RH)
    2- A. Wood (LH)
    3- M. Minor (LH)
    4- TBD typical wily veteran
    5- D. Hale (LH)

    Bullpen:
    C. Kimbrel (RH), closer
    D. Carpenter (RH), setup
    TBD (LH), lefty specialist
    L. Avilan (LH)
    Kris Medlen (RH)
    Gus Schlosser (RH)

    Bench:
    P. Gosselin (R), utility
    TBD, BUC typical David Ross-type cagey veteran
    TBD, IF
    TBD, OF
    TBD, 1B/OF
    TBD, bopper

    The way I see it, the Upton bros. act has played itself out. They are both gone, I believe the new GM’ll get that extension done with JHey and finish locking up the young core. The future at 2B will begin on day 1 in 2015. It’s bad news for the limited Tommy La Stella, but won’t hurt Goss as he will be the new utility guy. Pena is a goner… too expensive 3rd time to the arb table. I think the bench is wide, wide open. And it should be. It was/is wretched this year. The future is already behind the plate. They’ll maximize Evan’s value, as they should.

    Backup catcher is a big deal. B’court is the now and future guy. Let’s hope Fredi (if he’s still around) doesn’t save him for December like he did with Evan this year. B’court is the man, and should really only get a day off about once a week. I’d even be OK if they wanted to assign the backup to one of the starters and give him 1 start every 5. The Laird train has also left my station. Re-signing David Ross would be great with me. And he would also give you the added bonus of a big clubhouse presence that is currently missing.

    Hale deserves and should get a shot at the rotation, and the team will pick up its typical older veteran on a typical 1 year deal. I do think Meds makes it back, but I think the bullpen is best suited for his recovery, as history would suggest. As for Beachy, time will tell. He could claim a rotation spot if he proves healthy, but we have already seen what happens to 2-time TJ guys, right Jonny? I think Meds stands a much better chance of making it back given his delivery and pitch selection, etc. And I think Jordan Walden is finished here. It’s a big arb hit for a guy who walks on the edge almost every appearance.

    They have to address the lack of a lefty specialist for the ‘pen. Not sure what it’ll take, but it’s critical, IMO. I gave Gus the nod for the last ‘pen spot because i am still on the Gus Bus, but it’s wide open also.

    To summarize, the big holes are at loogy, most of the bench, possibly 1 starter, and of course 2/3 of the OF. That is a big job for a new GM. Those 2 OF spots are absolutely critical. The remaining 6 in the everyday lineup are locked in and not likely to be altered. So the new GM absolutely cannot afford to whiff on either of those positions.

    Like

  366. 383 Gil in Mechanicsville September 23, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    Raisins, there is so much information mentioned in your post, I hardly know where to start but I will make a stab at one or two.

    I’ll start with Evan Gattis. Evan’s days as the everyday catcher for the Braves are done, yep, I’ll buy that. But… I don’t think the Braves will give him up for a prospect or two. Nope, he actually could fill the “bopper” role off the bench pretty well I would think and he would cost zip as far as major league payrolls go. Maybe the Braves dangle him to an AL team like the A’s out in Oakland because he would fit right in there but the Braves better get some quality back because he is a marketing gold mine for the franchise… I still say he could play some first base or left field as well as a lot of DHs out there.

    But…. The Braves are already one of the most offensively challenged teams in the league and giving up one guy who can actually be a game changer needs to be done with care.

    Grizzled veteran pitcher? How about Harang? Not his fault the offense has deserted him. To be honest, he has pitched better than Santana for a lot less money. No, pitching is not where the black hole exist in this team. It is a line up of hitters who have had their heads screwed up this season to the point they don’t really have a clue as to what they should be doing.

    There are two formulas for success. One is to get guys who fit your style of play or adapting your style of play that suits the talent of the players you have. Trying to alter either formula is a sure fire recipe for disaster and a steady diet of anti acid tablets.

    On Tommy LaStella, the kid has some promise but I would fine him $100 every time he upper cuts the ball trying to hit a home run. he is a Michael Borne type hitter with less speed. Still, he can be a success if he tries to hit the gaps or goes the other way. He has warning track power and he was a pretty good hitter before the hitting coaches in Atlanta got their hooks into him.

    Yep, ship out both Uptons, Could even make it a package deal but I doubt there will be any takers on that one without having incriminating pictures of the opposing GM. The Braves formula was to always bring along one promising rookie each season. Having a core of good home grown talent and trading a few of those farm hands for some vets and role players as needed.

    Liked by 1 person


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