1:04 pm March 30, 2009, by David O'Brien
March 31st, 200910:35 am
I’m worried we’re going to be paying him millions to sit on the bench.
Even at that worst case, it won’t strangle the budget. The Braves appear ready to start inserting over the next four years what top-flight farm talent they have, both position players and pitchers. If much of that home-grown talent fulfills expectations, at league minimums and arb levels, the Braves will have plenty of flexibility to absorb what would be a relatively low elite salary.
Chipper does not appear to be a player who would hang on solely for the money, though. Would he take the cash, knowing that he would be reduced to part-time status, pinch-hitting, and the like? Even to get to 500 HR? Don’t know, but, my gut says he would retire, instead.
March 31st, 200910:36 am
Nick – I’m sorry. THAT’S what this blog needs. 100 people screaming “Whooo! Go Braves!”
Now that’s good reading!
Just voicing some concerns, dude….chill.
March 31st, 200910:37 am
“Wren actually made a joke along those same lines upon announcing the deal. Said the code name they had for Darrow was “Clarence” during discussions before the trade.”
Did you ever ask FW if he asked Darrow, “What’s your clearance, Clarance?”
Then, confirming McDowell was on board with the trade, “Roger, Roger.”
Tomahawkin' Again (Like it's 1991)
March 31st, 200910:39 am
Great news about Chipper! Hamels not going to pitch against us in the opener, going to the game tonight here in Kissimmee and Lowe’s pitching. I LOVE THIS GAME!
scoots – No doubt that Chipper is a great player both on the field and professionally. And if he’s healthy he’s worth way more than that $40 million. But he hasn’t been healthy in years, and age is only going to make that worse.
The ghost of Will Ohman
March 31st, 200910:40 am
Chipper’s presence with the team is worth 40 million for 3 years even if he only plays 10 games per year. IMO he means THAT much to the franchise and to the fans.
I’m just a little concerned that, at 41, he still won’t be ready to retire and we could get Smoltz’ed again.
March 31st, 200910:41 am
from what i can tell, with a trade or release of wither vazquez or huddy after this season, the braves will have about$20-$23mil coming off the books, and the biggest need will be a closer.
i think with $23mil, the braves outgha be able to get a closer, a PH, and a platoon LF. the only other moves might be bullpen help, but they could get that through trading vazquez.
money is not an issue for the braves.
March 31st, 200910:42 am
DAP your a moron for wanting to cut Tim Hudson after this year — Are you a mets fan or phillies fan ?
18 Wheels of Love
I’d let Huddy walk and go after Jason Bay. Bay/Schafer/Frenchy OF would be pretty good.
March 31st, 200910:44 am
Cyrus, look up the stats of guys playing after TJ surgery…I don’t think they are too good. And we have a good staff in place right now, subtract Glavine and add Hanson, and its even better. While I like Huddy, I just don’t see a spot for him unless another is removed. And do you remove a starter for one coming off TJ in a contract year? Personally I don’t see it.
spotts, I don’t disagree with you re Chipper’s health; he’s not going to suddenly start playing 155 games again, in his late 30s. I was only addressing your concern about millions on the bench.
Some people on here are overrating Will Ohman.
The Bloviator Downstairs
March 31st, 200910:45 am
i can’t believe the braves wouldnt offer ohman a minor league deal, especially after watching their “lefty specialists” average an 8.56 era this spring. (lexbrave)
Accurate to say the ERA what it is, but not so telling without context. Most of the runs were allowed in one or two dreadful appearances. ST being what it is, there ain’t otherwise enough of a sample size to wash out the ERA effects of one bad outing. ERA ain’t very telling for relievers anyway. Like it’s telling to examine K’BB rates and GB/FB rates and quality starts for a starter, it’s more telling to examine K/BB and GB/FB rates and also the number and rate of quality appearances for a reliever (no such stat but you just have to eyeball the games themselves or resort to eyeballing game logs to get a better feel for how they performed day to day). The way you sound, you likely threw your hands up and quit on the Bloviator as a closer when he get slaughtered in the first week of 2002 by the Mets (I can not believe it has been that long, feels like yesterday, time flies).
March 31st, 200910:46 am
Pitchers who have TJ surgery usually come back around to form. In some cases they are even better. It just takes time. Smoltzie came back from TJ. Gonzalez is coming back and he looks just fine.
March 31st, 200910:47 am
Chipper may miss some time over the next several years, but does anyone truly believe that even sitting in a rocking chair drinking Geritol that Chipper won’t be able to hit?
You don’t let Huddy go….Vasquez is the trade bait here. You bring him to the NL and let him have the chance to excel, do his thing and increase his value for the off season and if Huddy is looking strong then you find a solid piece to our puzzle and let Vasquez go in return. Then you have Lowe, Huddy, Jair, KK, Hanson for 2010. Worst case, someone gets hurt and we simply have Huddy fill in later this year or next year. But you most definitely do not let Hudson go.
March 31st, 200910:48 am
They come back to form and often pick up a MPH or 2 but it takes time….time that we don’t have with Huddy.
March 31st, 200910:50 am
Who would you guys recommend picking 2nd in a NL-only, 4X4, fantasy draft? I am figuring Hanley Ramirez will go first. I was thinking either David Wright or Jose Reyes.
We could go get Bay….then we can block the “Lebron” of the Braves organization, the kid, from being in the bigs in 2010….Overpay for Bay or the Say Hey kid? Hmmmmm…..
Some people on here are underrating how bad O’Flaherty and Logan are.
Personally, if I am making the call, I would take a healthy Vazquez next year over a coming-off-of-TJ-surgery Hudson.
March 31st, 200910:51 am
18Wheels-Why in the world would the Braves attempt to sign Bay to a Free Agent contract when they will have Heyward ready in two years or less? It would be a total waste of $$$$$$.
Joseph, I’m assuming Frenchy goes elsewhere long term.
why dont we have time with Huddy Starting Pitching Depth is one of our strengths. Hanson,Reyes,Campillo,and others.
March 31st, 200910:52 am
March 31st, 200910:53 am
18 Wheels….good thing you aint the GM eh? You’d let Huddy go and go get Bay….then you’d have to trade Heyward for something too cause you just blocked him….maybe a first baseman? Then you can block Freeman too eh? I respect your opinion but I do not understand it
March 31st, 200910:54 am
Mike Hampton can pitch great when he’s healthy. That being said, the past three years everyone was screaming “He’s getting paid to do nothing!” and was outraged that we were wasting so much money for like, 2 starts.
Hampton’s missed far more time with injuries than Chipper, so I don’t mean to compare the two….yet. I’m just saying that with age, I’m scared Chipper will become the next Mike Hampton. With the exception of Freddy Sanchez’ back body drop a few years ago, look at how Chipper’s hurt himself – running the bases, swinging a bat, etc.
Just playing devil’s advocate here
March 31st, 200910:56 am
Huh? Hudson will be fully 18 months into his rehab by next ST, barring major setbacks. Or are you saying the time doesn’t exist before the option must be picked up? Even if he doesn’t pitch in September when rosters expand, the Braves will have most of the data they need to make a decision on the option. Hudson would need to suffer a significant setback in his rehab for that cheap option to not be picked up. The guy is a top-of-the-rotation pitcher available at middle-rotation money…you don’t pass up deals such as that.
18 Wheels….then you are incredibly wrong. If Frenchy puts up anything reasonable, he’s getting a contract extension. Why let him walk, get Bay and bring up Heyward? So we can overpay for Bay? We couldn’t get him last year and we offering a hell of a deal. We are losing possible 9 Mil off the books next year with Gonzo and Sori-ouch-o so why not sign Frenchy something reasonable, depending on how he plays of course, put Heyward in LF and put some money into other quality relievers and into our farm system. Guys like KJ and Esco are due some money soon too….can’t spend every nickel and dime we have.
March 31st, 200910:59 am
You don’t let Huddy go….Vasquez is the trade bait here. (josephw000)
Huddy will be 34 years old next season and coming off a major surgery while making $14 million or so. Not exactly a flamethrower anyway, he relied on nasty movement and sink. May take a while for that to come back off this kind of surgery, if it ever does – not a promise since he’s already talking about cleaning up his mechanics. While his somewhat flawed mechanics led to this injury, they also caused him to have the nasty movement he had. If he changes his mechanics, he may be at less risk of injury, but lose the kind of nasty movement on his pitches that often comes from flawed mechanics.
If Hudson was more of a flamethrower or a finesse guy, I’d feel better about how good Hudson will be when he gets back, but he’s not either. If that ball ain’t wiggling around 90 mph with heavy sink, he doesn’t have the gas to smoke ‘em and forgive mistakes and doesn’t have the experience of being a crafty finesse guy like Moyer or Maddux or Glavine to fall back on.
Vazquez will be 33, hopefully healthy and only making $11 million. Vazquez will likely give you a better return on your financial investment. I don’t see Hudson being here next season if the Braves can swing a trade at the deadline for the likes of a Jake Peavy, who’d be younger, in his prime, healthier and making the same money with less risky unknowns attached to him.
Lets Go Braves
March 31st, 200911:00 am
Don’t be suprised if the Braves move Chipper to first in the next year or two. He will become a libility at third and will be less injury prone at first. They can use Kotch and Javy as trade bait to get a great third baseman……
March 31st, 200911:01 am
I’m not blocking Heyward. I would trade Frenchy or let him sign somewhere else. I’d let Huddy walk and sign Bay.
Hanson/Lowe/JJ/KK/Locke or Rohrbaugh or new addition
Putting Huddy in that equation would mean committing long term money to a guy coming off TJ. I’m not saying he won’t make a great comeback, I’m just saying with next year being his option year, it could be bad timing. The question is, who would be his replacement if you didn’t pick up his option.
March 31st, 200911:03 am
The reason I was thinking Wright over Pujols is because Wright is going to have just about as many homeruns and probably more RBI because of the lineup he hits in. Pujols will have a better average, but Wright will have way more stolen bases
March 31st, 200911:04 am
cyrus no, youre a moron. i didnt say that.
March 31st, 200911:06 am
I fail to understand why Chipper would be less injury prone at first than third. There is more chance for a collision with the runner at first. In addition, all of Chipper’s injuries were as a result of weither playing out of position in left field (different muscle usage), skidding on a terribly maintained field and pulling muscles while swinging at balls or running to first. His injuries have nothing whatsoever to do with him playing third base.
March 31st, 200911:07 am
18 Wheels: I disagree…Jason Bay NO. If you are gonna spend that kind of money why not spend the extra 2-4 mil a year and sign Matt Holliday. Bay to expensive. Heyward probably wont play in the Majors next year unless he tears it up this year. Freeman is the same way. Give Kotch some credit the kid can play and he is only 25.
18 Wheels-How would picking up Hudson’s $12 mil one year option for 2010 be committing long term money to him?
March 31st, 200911:08 am
I’m betting on Bay being better than Frenchy and Heyward being cheaper and better as well. Of course if Bay is too expensive, then we just pass. Lots of moving parts but I am not sold on Jeff being a long term Brave.
I’m not going to block Freddie at 1B…Kotch will be traded to make room.
“Whooo! Go Braves!”
Buffalo NY Braves Fan
March 31st, 200911:09 am
Couldn’t you just move Heyward to LF? It’s not like Anderson is a permanent solution there…..
March 31st, 200911:10 am
Joseph, we were trying to trade for Bay, not sign him. Bay had no say in coming to ATL. Not saying he won’t be a lot of money, just saying it was a trade situation and not a FA signing situation.
March 31st, 200911:11 am
18 Wheels-You’re also forgetting that we still have Brandon Jones waiting in the wings. There is absolutely NO WAY the Braves even attempt to lure Bay to Atlanta. None.
James is Red
March 31st, 200911:15 am
Lew – I agree. While moving Chipper to 1st may make sense for the lineup at some point, it won’t affect potential injuries. I cringe when he swings and misses or runs the base paths – not when he’s fielding a hot shot.
18 wheels, so you would let Frenchy, a 24 year old this year, sign elsewhere, and bring on Jason Bay, who’s going to be 32 by the time Frenchy is finished with arbitration years??
If Frenchy bounces back to his pre last year numbers, they’re essentially the same player. Bay averages .282, 25-30 HR & 100 RBI’s, and is 6 years older.
That doesn’t really make much sense, IF Francoeur can get back on track.
March 31st, 200911:16 am
“Give Kotch some credit the kid can play and he is only 25.”
Show me where I took credit away from him and I will concede your point. I think Kotch is going to rake this year, just saying that Freddie is the long term answer for when Kotch hits FA.
“18 Wheels-How would picking up Hudson’s $12 mil one year option for 2010 be committing long term money to him?”
I just don’t think you pick up the option unless you plan on resigning him. Unless is just lights out dominating at the end of the year. Giving Smoltz 14m for 27 innings was a eye opener. I think it is a risk with Huddy.
Couldn’t you just move Heyward to LF? It’s not like Anderson is a permanent solution there…..”
If Jeff is solid then sure, put Heyward in LF and keep Schafer in CF. But again I’m not sold on Jeff as the long term answer in LF. I hope he is but I also want to win, and you can’t go year to year hoping a guy produces. Bay has a track record that is worth paying for – same for Holliday, and an argument can be made for him too. I’m of the belief that your OF anchors need to be able to mash consistently.
March 31st, 200911:18 am
DAP…I don’t know what game you’ve been watching over the years or what it takes for you to evaluate defensive skills, but Kelly Johnson doesn’t possess any at second base…zip, nadda…range, glove-work, turning the double-play, and if he has to go to his right the best you can hope for is for him to knock the ball down, and even they you can be sure it won’t be with his glove. If we ever decide to trade the kid – and I’d hate to see it because I love his bat – some other club will have him at another position and knocking of the All-Star door within a year.
I don’t know if it’s the fact that he simply can’t make the adjustment to the right side of the infield or what, but if you’re honest you’ll admit that every time the ball is hit to him you wince a bit in hopes that he won’t boot it.
March 31st, 200911:19 am
You don’t leave B Jones at AAA for 4 years….I’d put him in LF before Bay. Then if eventually Frenchy or B Jones earn a spot on another team, bring up Heyward.
I know we were trying to trade for Bay, what do you think that puts his value at that we were giving up the farm and couldn’t get him? He’ll be 15 mil+ per year….and he’s 34. And we have the options in the farm system.
Hamels is out for Opening Day! That means either Myers or Blanton will get the nod.
Myers isn’t so bad…really…
Wayne in Utah
March 31st, 200911:20 am
Wil Ohman (funny man, and ocassionally good relief pitcher)
Wil Ohman last year was offered a contract by his current team, the Atlanta Braves. He turned it down for the chance to become a free agent. The Braves made him a decent 2 year offer in the early stages of the negotiation period. That offer was turned down.
It is rumored that subsequent offers were made and rejected. At one point along the way, the Braves acquired two left handed relief specialists, and at that point, no longer required the services of Wil Ohman.
In layman’s terms, he was playing deal or no deal, and his offer went from $350,000 dollars to about $47.50, because early on, he kept saying “No Deal”.
Folks, he went to final jeopardy and LOST. Get over it.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t like O’Flaherty or Logan. It doesn’t matter that Ohman was a great guy, and a decent relief pitcher. He over priced himself, and now he is a LA Dodger minor leaguer.
In the words of Don Henley, “Get Over It.”
lew yeah, its not that hard to imagine that chipper will still be the best hitter on the braves team in 3 years.
also, im with 18 wheels. it wouldnt be a bad idea to add a hitter like bay. unless by this offseason, the braves are sure heyward will start in 2010, i would consider getting bay or someone like him and cross the heyward bridge when we get there. we could always trade bay, or frenchy, or frenchy might leave via free agency.
it wrong to assume that if we sign someone for LF heyward will be blocked for years. there are always solutions to problems like that.
by the way, hudson salary will only be like $12mil, im pretty sure. very close to vazquez’s ($11.5mil). i would trade vazquez and keep huddy. huddy is the better pitcher, even at 34 years, and they will both have only one year left on the contract.
18 wheels, you arent committing long term money to huddy. its a one year option year. and if you let him go? tommy hanson takes over. either vazquez or huddy will not be a brave next year, im sure of it.
March 31st, 200911:21 am
…and the whole Hudson conversation is interesting, but, I think I’ll wait to see how the 2009 rotation plays out first, LOL. Vazquez is just as likely to faceplant as go en fuego, Kawakami is an unknown, Jurrjens might regress instead of progress, just all sorts of things that might impact on the 2010 rotation. Shoot, it might be Morton-Reyes-Hanson slinging in September this year, for all I know. Lots of time and circumstance to undergo before considering viability of Hudson’s option.
Lots if ‘ifs’ in there when talking about Francoeur. I like him, I am just not giving him the benefit of the doubt until he proves it. Again, Jason Bay is consistent, Jeff has not been. I hope Jeff figures it out, I want him to be the guy, but if he doesn’t, I wouldn’t hesitate to move him and go with someone else. If we aren’t getting power from another position like a 1B, then I think you have to upgrade significantly at one of the corner OF spots.
March 31st, 200911:22 am
“Chipper Jones is not human. I think he’s been created by Ted Turner and some scientists.”
March 31st, 200911:23 am
Dirty….Kelly has played 2B for a very short time and while he is no Ozzie Smith, he isn’t horrible with a glove. He does make his share of great plays and catches. As an outfielder once before he can typically get a good read on a ball in the air and has good range and speed. I’ve noticed a huge improvement in his game over the past two years and him and Esco can turn some solid double plays.
Top it off? When you have Frenchy throwing from the warning track to the cutoff man who is Johnson, you have a very potent right side of the field. Very good arms over there, KJ has an outfielders arm and is quite accurate to teh plate and to first.
With all that being said, I’ve always considered Hudson to be this decade’s David Cone. They were both max effort, wicked movement little dudes who left their blood, sweat, tears, ligaments and tendons on the field every time they went out there (the only major difference to me is that cone never went ryan leaf on reporters like Hudson did. quite the contrary with cone). Cone got struck down at a similar age by an anyeurism. He went on to be a good pitcher for 3 more seasons before hitting a wall at the age of 36. Hopefully, Hudson can replicate what Cone did between 33 and 36 …… and perhaps be better longer into his career.
McFann :Ô: “Hamels is out for Opening Day! That means either Myers or Blanton will get the nod.”
You beat me to this bit of news. I know it’s only the first game of the year but we’ve got to get out to a good start this year, especially against the Phillies. This is pretty damn good news to start the season.
18 Wheels-You don’t pick up Hudson’s option without offering him a long term deal? Really? And why, exactly, is that? Seems to me a long term contract is not offered until the option is exercised and he actually pitches for a while first so they can see if a long term deal might be a worthwhile offering. I’m doubting it will be considering that we still have Rohrbough and Locke (not to mention Teheran) still in the pitching pipeline.
Hudson pitches for the Braves in 2010 and likely not afterwards, IMO.
March 31st, 200911:24 am
Lew: I was under the impression that the Braves were down on Brandon Jones. I get no impression that he’s “waiting in the wings” like he was before.
March 31st, 200911:25 am
I was listening about a week ago to Dale Murphy on the Braves radio broadcast on XM, and he was talking about what a solid defensive second baseman the KJ is.
Sorry, but I am not buying your rant. Is KJ a top 5 second baseman. Heck no. Is he as bad as you propose, no way.
We need to get off this KJ hate/Prado love affair around here.
I don’t put any value on the package we offered for Bay…that is their GM’s call based on needs and wants. Our failed attempt doesn’t do anything to his FA value. Nothing.
And I love B. Jones, just don’t know where to put him. I understand the Garrett acquisition but I would have loved to see what Jones could have done in LF. Again, it is that need for power that got us Garrett instead of Jones…even with his 16 or so HR’s.
March 31st, 200911:26 am
Have any of you guys heard anything about Julio Franco? Is he still swinging telephone poles for baseball bats? He was a monster.
March 31st, 200911:27 am
DOB, where are you? Sleeping in on this overcast morning here in central Florida?
Sportsmandh, I thought Kawakami looked very good, particularly that knee-buckling curveball. Really solid outing with a sellout crowd that was more Red Sox fans than Braves, and with a whole lot of attention (about 50 Japanese media members, and 75 total — more like a playoff game than a spring game, in that regard).
His shoulder wasn’t a problem, or at least he didn’t show any signs or say it was a problem, and he had good/very good command of all his pitches. Didn’t use the forkball much yesterday, but he has used it in past couple starts. Yesterday, used that big ol curve several times, with good results.
March 31st, 200911:28 am
Lew, it all boils down to 12m for a guy coming off TJ. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s a risk. A big risk. Remember Smoltz’s 28 innings for 14m? All I am saying is that now that we added an extra starter in Kawakami and Hanson is MLB ready, I would put that 12m into someone not coming off TJ.
March 31st, 200911:29 am
I say let Soriano walk after this year, trade Vazquez to Col. for Street, resign Hudson, try and keep Prado around, and we’re set. The only problem we’d have in the rotation is where to put Lowe/Hudson…don’t want two sinker ballers going back to back, do ya?
Josh B, Julio Franco is managing a rookie-ball team in the Mets organization. And his pitching coach is … Frank Fultz, the former Braves strength coach who was let go last summer.
March 31st, 200911:30 am
Tim Hudson is an ACE! Vazquez is a good pitcher but he’s not an ace. You don’t release an ace to save $3 million.
March 31st, 200911:31 am
DAP_Sorry Dude, but if I’m the Braves in 2010, we either (because he had a great year) re-sign Garrett for another year, or as I feel is more likely, we have Diaz (still another arbitration year this winter) platoon with Brandon Jones and by 2011, we consider putting Heyward out there. There is no need and it makes no sense to spend all that money on a Free Agent like Bay. It would have been one thing getting him in a trade where you have him for a year and a half at reasonable money, but not spending that kind of $$$ when his position is not a true need for the team next year.
Spend the bucks to either sign Gonzo long term or get another closer or locking up Francoeur (performance granting) or Kelly or Yunel. THAT’S what our need will be next season, NOT a left fielder.
March 31st, 200911:32 am
Why not try to sign Sheffield for one year? He respects Cox and, as long as he was with the Braves, kept his mouth shut and played baseball. It sure would be nice to have his bat in the line-up – provided, he has anything left. But what’s there to lose if he accepted a $400k contract?
KK showed us some of his makeup yesterday against his countryman. He raised his game when he needed to. I hope this is a sign of things to come from him.
March 31st, 200911:34 am
Where would Sheffield play? We just traded an outfielder because we had too many.
March 31st, 200911:35 am
TommyP-Considering that Brandon has hit .348 this spring while tied for the team lead in RBI, while playing excellent defense, I’m not so sure the Braves ARE down on Brandon. Dude had a phenomenal 2007 season and battled injuries last year. I’m thinking that the Braves may be somewhat sorry they signed Garrett instead of letting Brandon platoon with Diaz.
March 31st, 200911:36 am
Darn good news for sure (sorry I beat you to it, heh heh!), especially if it’s Myers–anytime you cann face Myers instead of Hamels, it’s a great thing. Joe Blanton…eh, don’t remember much about him except that he started that stupid game on July 27…think the rain delay knocked him out caused him to leave the game early, though.
March 31st, 200911:37 am
Sheffield was released…
Any interest from Bravos?
Put Frenchy in CF and slide Shef to RF?
Detroit’s eating his contract, so he’d presumably come cheap.
March 31st, 200911:38 am
Why are Bobby and the Braves waiting to announce Schafer as the opening day CF? If it was an open competition and now that Anderson is gone it is clear who the winner is. I don’t think much can change from a guy hitting .375 to a guy hitting .111 and Schafer is far superior in CF. Why play all these games by saying it’s now between Schafer and Blanco, it’s not even close. Give the kid his credit and award him CF because it’s obvious he’s worked hard and earned it. Now that both players have options, it would be a total slap in the face to Schafer to give Blanco the job. No reason for the Braves to say it’s down to Schafer and Blanco. Schafer has won the job so lets announce it already so he can relax for the last week.
March 31st, 200911:39 am
My belief is based on the past Braves principles…
2 power hitting OF’er and 1 leadoff OF type. (Andruw, Gant, Justice, Sheff, Nixon)
Solid infield defense up the middle with power at the corners. (Lemke, Blauser, Chipper, McGriff, Galaraga)
Average to above average C (McCann is a plus, Olsen, Berryhill)
Excellent Rotation (Big 3 + Millwood, Avery)
Above average closer and serviceable to good middle relief (Wohlers, Smoltz, McMichael, Merker)
That’s the formula that I have seen win and I think they are trying to stick to that mold the best they can.
March 31st, 200911:40 am
18 Wheels-Dude, you keep bringing up Smoltz’s small number of innings pitched versus what he was paid and I’m not at all certain it’s even vaguely an analogous situation. Smoltz was in his forties, was NOT coming off of TJ surgery and had had four previous surgeries at various points of his career. AND he was a power pitcher (stressing his arm-particularly his shoulder- more), not a finesse guy, which is MORE what Hudson is (making it likely he will be fine-less strain on the arm- as almost all pitchers are after coming back from TJ). Besides, I think the Braves will see if he’s capable BEFORE picking up the option. Hell-there are many here who think he’ll be pitching again in August-or even next weekend.
March 31st, 200911:41 am
Lets Go Braves
March 31st, 2009
Don’t be suprised if the Braves move Chipper to first in the next year or two. He will become a libility at third and will be less injury prone at first. They can use Kotch and Javy as trade bait to get a great third baseman……
Who is Javy ?
shafer’s waferswhy not spend the extra 2-4 mil a year and sign Matt Holliday. Bay to expensive.
how do you know this? he hasnt even filed for free agency yet. he hasnt been made an offer by anyone. please explain how you know what bay will cost, and how much exactly is it?
lew i wouldnt assume b. jones will ever be an everyday player for the braves. a righthanded out fielder really would be nice. (disclaimer: i realize that if frenchy rebound well, this whole thing is moot.)
Oh, I think Brandon Jones might have rebuilt some good karma with his spring. Showed a little pop, only 4 Ks in his 50ish ABs, good glove. He was never really healthy last year, and a good year at AAA might reestablish his credentials. He’s still left-handed and still can’t play CF, though, so he’s going to have a tough road to Atlanta, given the makeup of the team for the foreseeable future.
dirtydawg i dont evaluate defensive skills. honestly i am easily impressed with up the middle defense. when renteria was here, he made some special looking plays. i had to listen to experts to know that his range really wasnt all that great, and not until i saw escobar throw did i realize how weak renteria’s arm was in comparison.
i say all that to say, im not relying on myself or my perceptions on kelly’s defense. (maybe you are?) im listening to experts. and over and voer for the last year or so, i have been hearing expert sya that kelly is fine defensively. not great, but average, and improving. and instead of assuming all those experts are wusses and idiot and calling their manhood into question, i believe them.
March 31st, 200911:43 am
18 wheels, you talk of Bays track record, but he had a year that was close to as bad as Jeff’s in 2007, so he has a track record of being up and down as well, and he strikes out A LOT.
Bay batted .247 with 141 strike outs & 133 hits in 2007. That’s worse than Jeff’s 143 hits & 111 strike outs last year when he batted .239.
Bay bounced back with a big year last year, but he still struck out 137 times.
Bay’s really not that much better than Frenchy, and has been known to put up bad years similar to Jeff. He’s also not as good of a fielder, and doesn’t have the arm that Frenchy has.
Now Holliday’s another story, but he’s going to be available next year, and he’s going to command $20+ MM per year. There’s no way the Braves pay that price, especially with another year of Arb still available with Frenchy & Heyward waiting to come up and play LF full time.
You’re thought to bring on Bay is the same. He’s available next year, and he can play LF for next year, but Frenchy still has another year of Arbitration AFTER next year, so that blocks Heyward if he’s ready.
Either way, look for Frenchy & Heyward to be in the outfield together in a couple years, with Schafer in the middle & possibly letting Frenchy walk AFTER that.
Agreed on left field. A lot of guys will have to fall off the radar screen before we would need Bay in 2010. (Frenchy, Diaz and BJones)
I think Garret Anderson will be a one and done kinda guy, unless he just brings a lot of intangibles to the team and is a catalyst.
DAP_I didn’t say he would be an everyday player, but the LH hitting half of a left field platoon with Diaz.
Greg in TN
March 31st, 200911:46 am
Very pleased to see the Offensive Assassin getting a contract extension today which will place him in Atlanta for an additional three years and a vesting option for a fourth. Having U Kno Who in the first base dugout will help the transition between the next wave of baby Braves anchored by the phenom, Tommy Hanson and the man that appears to be our new starting CF’er, Jordan Schafer.
I’ve said this before, however having #10 in uniform for 130-140 games is far better than having 3/4s of the league in his spot for 160 games and with a franchise that took a very public PR hit in the exit of John Smoltz this past offseason, this deal helps at least mend a little of the damaged caused by a fan base that wanted to see Smoltz and Chipper both retire as Braves.
Eric from MO
March 31st, 200911:47 am
DAP if you think 23 mil is coming off then you must expect neither Hudson or Vazquez will be back. You also assume the payroll will remain the same. We are going into a depression. Dont be suprise if we are cutting payroll at the end of this season.
March 31st, 200911:48 am
Y’all-we need to keep something else in mind here, too. We’re talking about what moves may or may not be made a year from now. We have no idea whatsoever what will happen in 09 that will impact any potential situation that may or may not arise far in the future.
March 31st, 200911:51 am
I will never understand how some can hear actual professional baseball players say something (ie KJ is a decent defensive secondbaseman) and then turn around and think they know more than folks that have lived the game?????
And I thought I was stubborned!
lew i dont disagree, unless frenchy looks like he isnt going to work out. the braves are in good shape again with a little money to spend this coming offseason. im thinking the same as you…get gonzalez back, get a guy to platoon with diaz (eric hinske), pay raises, and maybe a bit more bullpen help, and were good. if frenchy falters though(i dont think he will), we might need to set this team up with another everyday corner outfielder.
You’re right, I guess I just need to lay off KJ cause it’s obvious that nobody here, and nobody connected to the Braves (and that includes Dale Murphy and Mark Lemke) will be honest about it. I don’t hate the kid, I just don’t see the instincts and skills that you see with a quality 2Bman. Not in the top 5? Promise you he’s not in the top 25. Just wait, when SI’s MLB preview comes out this week, an opposing scout will, if he’s being honest, make a comment about Atlanta’s limitations on defense in the infield and the weakest link is KJ,
March 31st, 200911:52 am
Eric from MO, it’s a recession, not a depression. Sorry to get technical, but there’s no set definition for Depression, and we shouldn’t throw around those terms, as we’ll probably see growth by the end of this year, where as a depression has been thought to mean at minimum a full 18 months of decrease in economic activity, so we’re not there yet, and won’t be there till the start of next season, at the earliest.
March 31st, 200911:53 am
Eric from MO-It’s doubtful they will keep the two of them at that money. $12 mil will go elsewhere under one circumstance or another. In addition to that, Soriano’s $6 mil will be gone (count on THAT) and Gonzo’s $3.45 million comes off the books, too. That comes to somewhat more than $20 million-out of which we will need a new closer. Yes, the economy may reduce payroll (wouldn’t surprise me in the least), but there is a good bit of money going away this coming winter.
March 31st, 200911:56 am
Lew, I think the Smoltz thing is relevant because it is a guy coming off surgery, albeit his 5th. I get it. I’m just not going to act like it isn’t going to be a factor with Hudson because it will. Wren went through that and it’s part of his experience. And we’ve seen how Wren is reluctant to over pay for guys like that. He also did it in Baltimore. I just don’t know if there is enough time for Huddy to prove he is worth picking up the 12m option. It is the same situation that we just went through with Smoltz…he didn’t have enough time to prove himself so we moved on. There are patterns that have been established that I base this on, that’s all.
March 31st, 200911:57 am
18 Wheels of Love what are you talking about. Many times a pitchers comes back as good or better after Tommy John surgery. Example would be Smoltz or maybe Chris Carpenter. He won the Cy Young after Tommy John surgery.
March 31st, 200911:59 am
Hey, we can’t deny that you have an opinion, but I have not seen those reports yet that state that Kelly is one of the 5 worst second sackers in the league.
I rely on folks I trust, and Dave O’Brien is one of those. What does he say about Kelly’s defense??? Taking the risk of misquoting Dave, I think he states that Kelly is an average defensive second baseman.
NOW, what is your real reason for belaboring the point??? I didn’t get the beginning of your point?? Do you want Prado in his place (certainly no better overall defensively) or did you want us to go after O-Dog (diminshing skills)?
Or did Kelly at one time in the past not ask your sister out on a date or something??
Seriously, what is your reason for bucking the choice the Braves have made for their second base job?
March 31st, 200912:00 pm
GermanBravesFan – where are you? I lived in a little town called Steinbach on a US military base with my parents in the 70’s.
March 31st, 200912:01 pm
I am not sure that your words on the economy are appreciated. I prefer to keep my head in the sand as my 401K slowly melts away……
March 31st, 200912:02 pm
Good points Lew and garlick. Jeff could be in the OF with Heyward but I still think Jeff will be gone at some point.
I brought up Bay as a option, just like Holliday is an option. I seriously doubt we get either of them but it doesn’t change the fact that we need some serious corner OF production now that we don’t have Andruws old stats in CF.
I still think we let Huddy walk after this year. Unless he absolutely blows off the doors with his return, which would need to be sooner rather than later.
an opposing scout will, if he’s being honest, make a comment about Atlanta’s limitations on defense in the infield and the weakest link is KJ, (dirtydawg)
While I agree that KJ is a defensive liability despite the sales job from the Braves camp that defies how any reasonably independent and objective observer could view his D, I have to disagree that the Braves infield D is limited. Escobar and Kotchman are +10 defenders. Chipper, at this stage of his career, is average or slightly better than average on D. While KJ may rate as a -5 to -10 defender, Chipper at 0 to +5, Kotchman and Escobar at +10 to +15 make this infield D a +10 run to +30 run infield D. That’s a 1 win to 3 win advantage with the infield D, capable of shaving 7 to 20 points off the staff’s intrinsic ERA.
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