No blog-outs, please.

   Washington, DC – So a 1-7 stretch here and a denizen is calling for a blog-out? No blogging in protest of the way the Braves are playing? Does that apply to beat writers as well? Can I go back to bed and leave a big white space here?

 

   Nah, didn’t think so. Hey, aren’t we here to give fans a voice? Or are we here to make statements? Oh, wait, I guess both.

   I gathered in your comments from last night that I failed you in not smoothing the edges and calming the masses, setting the blog on course for a torturous night.

   Can’t say I realized that was my responsibility, and it’s not exactly simple to do when the Braves have lost seven of eight and two in a row to a team that was 1-10 when the Braves came in here. But I can see where the pessimism gets to be a really big drag, so OK, let me try for a minute.

   It is early.

   There.

   Ha.

   Fine, a little more. Pitching is keeping the Braves in games, bullpen is getting better, so the foundation is there to fix this. Those are two things that were missing last season – trust in the rotation, and some reliance on the back end of the bullpen. Those two things that are working in their favor right now (Peter Moylan has been better last three outings, and Rafael  Soriano especially has been good), so the Braves just need to find a way to take advantage.

   The Braves starters have an ERA of 3.59, which is second in the National League behind only (guess who?) the Pirates  and their 2.79 ERA. Interestingly, Braves starters have a record of 5-6, but that’s not really their doing.

   It’s 14 games into the season. Who really knows if this is just a bad stretch or the Braves are going to end up being a mediocre team. I think there are chances at both, but that’s the beauty of the long season. There are so many ups and downs, and the truth takes time to reveal itself. Being knee-jerk in baseball ends up making you look stupid sometimes.

   I think right now the Braves are just trying to do a little too much – trying to take the extra base at bad times, trying to make the perfect play. It’s easy for me to say, but they just need to play within themselves.

   Part of the issue right now is the Braves aren’t getting their top two guys on-base. Kelly Johnson and Yunel Escobar are a combined 2-for-17 in the first two games of this series with two singles and no walks. Neither one has reached second base. Getting something going up there would really help matters.

   Oh, and for those who keep demanding an overhaul on the coaching staff? What is this, hockey? No further comment.

   Oh, except this. Greg Maddux would make a great pitching coach some day. I just don’t see it happening for a while.

   I was actually surprised to hear he had some interest in possibly doing that some day based on some of his comments leading up to his retirement. I always thought once he got out of the game, he was out. He wanted to be home for his family. The travel is a true grind, and coaches are in it just like players, broadcasters, and some of us hacks.

   But maybe he’ll do it some day. I just doubt it’s any time soon. When I talked to him recently about the Braves retiring his jersey, I asked him if we might see him next spring training as a special instructor. Bobby Cox had mentioned wanting to get him down to Florida for that, and the Padres had beat him to the punch this spring.

   Maddux said maybe when I asked. If Maddux would do it for anybody, he’d do it for Cox, but even that is not a given. Maddux said six months into retirement, he still didn’t really feel retired yet.

   So give him time. And give Roger a break.

   As for tonight, as Brian McCann told us after the game last night, he doesn’t plan to be in there tonight. That he’s going to need some time – he says hopefully not more than a week – to adjust to the new contact lens.

 

   So David Ross is back in at catcher, and while he’s no McCann, he is looking good so far. He’s gone 4-for-9 (.444) with a double, a homer and three RBIs in three starts. Corky who?

   And some housekeeping: Braves are holding their first bark in the Park on Sunday, May 3. Tickets are $25 for both you and your canine buddy. Tickets won’t be available the day of the game. You’ve got to register ahead at www.braves.com/bark.

 

   Gwinnett Braves have moved their start time of their May 7 game to 6 p.m.

   And if this blog has only managed to stir up the masses even more – I guess you never know – I recommend running to clear the head. That’s what I’ll be doing now.

 

 

2,231 comments Add your comment

Mitchie-san

April 22nd, 2009
11:26 am

Tom Hawk

April 22nd, 2009
11:26 am

the only bright spot last night was Logans play…but that was even overshadowed by stupid baserunning…

ABravesFan

April 22nd, 2009
11:29 am

The bad base running is killing us. Two straight day of losing a runner at 3rd on a ball that didn’t go too far (and for the 3rd out with Chipper batting, no less yesterday) and also losing runners on 2nd (Ross on Monday, Schaeffer yesterday).

The defense needs to do better as the 2 non errors essentially lead to go ahead runs (Escobar’s bubble on a grounder on Monday and then Diaz’s gift triple to Kearns).

Not really executing all that well plus a little bad luck needs to just be a temporary phase. Like Carrolll said, this is a LONG season, so hopefully we can turn things around soon.

I’m finding myself losing some sincerity while shouting blind encouragements to the team from right behind the dugout (thank goodness to “open seating” … the only perks of rain delays) these past two nights.

vabravesfan

April 22nd, 2009
11:31 am

fresh slate so no negativity

MFinBrian321 (née TnJeff04)

April 22nd, 2009
11:37 am

TnBrian (11:02 am): “TnJeff, hey smart A**, I listened to Brian Jordan say twice last night that the team has no chemistry or very little… at least not yet. Who are you? Shut the hell up and realize this is a blog and fans have a right to speak their minds.”

A. Why would you think Brian Jordan knows anything about these Braves’ “chemistry”?

2. ” . . . realize this is a blog and fans have a right to speak their minds.”

You’re right — did I tell to YOU to “Shut the hell up”?

No, I didn’t — I just aked why you were pretending to know something you couldn’t.

If you can’t handle a question like that, you should probably take a dive off the Walnut Street bridge. (Before or after you get to Coolidge Park.)

PS: That’s priceless — “Shut the hell up and realize this is a blog and fans have a right to speak their minds.”

Ironic much?

ease19

April 22nd, 2009
11:37 am

Carroll…THANKS for stating the obvious (meaning not so obvious for most).

But I can see where the pessimism gets to be a really big drag, so OK, let me try for a minute.

It is early.

There.

Ha.

Should be an empty blog after that. Who would dare argue with the esteemed Carroll Rogers? Oh snap, here we go again… :sad:

Run Heap Run

April 22nd, 2009
11:39 am

I agree about running clearing the head. I run every day after work but if rain throws a hook in that for consecutive days I get murderously irritable. I need to invest in a treadmill for those days when the weather doesn’t cooperate.

Anyway, we’ll get ‘em tonight. Go Braves!

Run Heap Run

April 22nd, 2009
11:40 am

And nobody needs a run like you TN boys. :lol:

The wren and stimpy show

April 22nd, 2009
11:41 am

When did we become the worst team in baseball. We are getting humiliated by a team that had to wear jerseys with “natinals” on the front. I mean they have had horrible luck. The nationals have lost three games in a row to the fish when they were leading in the 9th. The Braves have had the bases loaded against the pirates no outs and didnt score and then last night 3rd and 2nd no outs and didnt score. Im beginning to feel that the braves might be missing Mr. Smoltzs leadership in the clubhouse just a little bit. This is the worst Braves team I have ever seen. People can say oh the bloggers are just bitter and negative well maybe if the players had half the passion some of the bloggers did they would play with some pride. Mr. Wren nice work you created a roster that has been eleminated from the playoffs in April. Take a bow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Chop Chop

April 22nd, 2009
11:41 am

I’m sure the AJC is thankful for the page hits. That’s all that matters, Carroll.

Besides, I’d rather someone take out their anger in type than beat someone’s head in.

Turtsnap

April 22nd, 2009
11:43 am

DOB – We need the blog to vent our FRUSTRATIONS!!!!

bravofan

April 22nd, 2009
11:43 am

The braves are playing horrible. They are a wreck the bullpen can’t hold a lead they hardly have any offense we need another bat!

Isenberg

April 22nd, 2009
11:44 am

Carroll, what is the latest on Tom Glavine? Have you heard?

Jay212033

April 22nd, 2009
11:45 am

We’re going to go on a winning streak starting tonight watch and see and all of the summer soliders will be back saying how good the team is again!

MGL

April 22nd, 2009
11:45 am

The Braves have the lowest P/PA (Pitches per Plate Appearance) in all MLB at 3.52 average so far this year. That is nearlt 10% lower than any other team in the NL East. Phils at 3.83, Mets at 3.94, Marlins at 3.95, and Nats at 4.05. Obviously, this is not a stat that translates directly to won-loss record, but it does point out that they are not working counts well, and from observation, this is particularly bad against pitchers that they have not seen.

Sam

April 22nd, 2009
11:46 am

Does this lousy team deserve a blog????

Stop wasting your time on here people, unless you have absolutely nothing else to do.

N8

April 22nd, 2009
11:49 am

“All of you guys that think Bobby Cox needs to hang it up are idiots, as far as I’m concerned.” Isenberg

Well, to that, I say… Anybody who not only tolerates a team that collectively has played mediocre (under .500 mind you), baseball for what will be 4 calendar years come August 1st (if some things don’t change in a hurry), but PRAISES and stands by the man leading the troops during that stretch, is ALSO and idiot.

So, right back atcha!

Walter Sobchak

April 22nd, 2009
11:49 am

The dude abides the braves dont.

corkylikesbeer

April 22nd, 2009
11:50 am

Corky Miller is on a proud White Sox team making a decent living.

bravofan

April 22nd, 2009
11:50 am

Sam your a hypocrit just get off the blog yourself and let people decide if they want to or not!

C's

April 22nd, 2009
11:50 am

It’s weird the bad taste we as fans have in our mouths right now because of the way we are losing these games. But if you really think about it, there are already a number of games that would have went our way if 1 or 2 little things hadn’t happened. A base running gaffe, not getting a bunt down, not hitting a sac fly, etc, etc.

Basically my point is that there isn’t a huge glaring need. Just some simple execution and the outcome of 3-4 of these losses go the other way.

This staff will give us a chance to win more times than not IMO. The offense just needs to focus on the fundamentals of the game and execute. If they get their heads on straight and play the game like it’s supposed to be played, we’ll be fine.

C's

April 22nd, 2009
11:52 am

Wren and Bobby are not to blame for these losses. The players on the field are not executing. They deserve ALL of the blame if you ask me.

Chuck James was Solid until the 6th!!!

April 22nd, 2009
11:53 am

As sad as it is, there is nowhere else to turn. This team needs Garrett Anderson back healthy ASAP. His healthy bat is crucial for the rest of the season. Chipper needs to get back to 100% because he is hovering around 70-80% right now and McCann needs to get his vision back. Jeez that is alot of hoping….

bravofan

April 22nd, 2009
11:54 am

can the braves not make a deal for a bat? it is a must to be able to compete Garret no hit Anderson is garbage we braves fans even booo him we did when i was at a game at the TED

The Most Interesting Man in the World

April 22nd, 2009
11:54 am

Mexico once cancelled Cinco de Mayo because he had a scheduling conflict.

He always wins Halloween costume contests…even though he never wears a costume.

When he bobs for apples, the apples jockey for position.

He’s a lover, not a fighter…but he’s also a fighter, so don’t get any ideas.

He has been known to cure narcolepsy just by walking into the room.

His organ donation card also lists his beard.

Even his parents’ advice is insightful.

His beard alone has experienced more than a lesser man’s entire body.

His blood smells like cologne.

On every continent in the world, there is a sandwich named after him.

He doesn’t believe in using oven mitts, nor potholders.

His cereal never gets soggy. It sits there, staying crispy, just for him.

His pillow talk is years ahead of its time.

When he gives you directions, you always arrive at least 5 minutes early.

His legend precedes him, like lightning precedes thunder.

Alien abductors have asked him to probe them.

“Find out what it is in life you don’t do well, and then don’t do that thing.” – The Most Interesting Man In The World

http://www.staythirstymyfriends.com

SOS

April 22nd, 2009
11:54 am

N8. Gimme 5. You said it. You gives a %^&$*$* what you think Isenberg. Cox HAS to go or we will never see a winning record again.

bravofan2

April 22nd, 2009
11:55 am

the braves need a complete overhaul.bring up some guys that actually want to play unlike the ones we have right now playing crappy and making the big bucks. we couldnt be any worse than we are right now.

RemoW

April 22nd, 2009
11:56 am

The pitching is fine. Bullpen is starting to come around. But the fielding has to improve! How many of our recent losses are due to bad fielding. Last night was a great example. Chipper boots the ball then Diaz misses the liner. Chipper’s sure out scores for the go ahead. Escobar’s bobble cost too.

The Braves did a great job getting the pitching right, they even traded Boyer. Other then the starters not seeming to go more then 6. I like what I see. But we easily have 3 or 4 more wins if catch the ball.

bravofan

April 22nd, 2009
11:56 am

yeah why not give hanson heyward and all those guys a chance and gorky hernandez

N8

April 22nd, 2009
11:58 am

“First, DON’T PANIC… Next, remember that several of the best years of the 90’s and early 00’s were years where we were anywhere from not too good to absolutely horrid in April and even early May. It is a long (too long) season.” jo jo the yo yo

Keep in mind, that those teams had CONSIDERABLY more talent than the other teams within their division. Normally, with those teams back then, you could say “it’s early” and their recent track records had shown that they would turn it around and prevail in the end.

But not with this core group, and how Bobby has handled them in recent years. This team’s RECENT track record shows that this is only the beginning of a long season, unless there are some dramatic and drastic changes. I don’t expect it to get any better anytime soon.

bravofan2

April 22nd, 2009
11:59 am

bravofan- u r right, i have seen these guys play and they are great. they play with heart and for the love of the game. they could care less about the money.

Random

April 22nd, 2009
11:59 am

N8 April 22nd, 2009 12:26 am): (excerpt) “It’s not like 4/5 of the rotation is on the DL like it was last year. It’s not like 2 of the 3 bullpen guys are out for the year, and the other is less than a year removed from TJ surgery.”

Right!!!

This year’s team is not last year’s team — they’re losing what games they lose for substantially different reasons than last year.

But people keep trying to conflate all of this year’s problems with last year’s problems with those of 2007 and 2006 as if they were all of a piece.

That ain’t the case, and people should realize that and just drop it. Please.

bravofan

April 22nd, 2009
12:00 pm

yeah chipper has done a favor for the past couple of years and taking less $$$$$$ to keep huddy and to get a bat and what are those two guys doing nothing!

ncscoots

April 22nd, 2009
12:01 pm

The dude abides the braves dont.

Yeah, but they don’t like the Eagles, either, so there’s a start.

I think you’d also want to check the P/PA for the Braves in their wins versus their losses and the strikes percentages for the pitchers in those games also, in order to get an accurate read. In such a small sample size, there are lots of variables that could be producing outliers. Did they indeed see a significantly greater number of pitches in the wins, or not? If so, were they facing pitchers who throw a lower percentage of strikes, or not? And so forth.

Sometimes that darned opposing pitcher just doesn’t want to cooperate with a hitter trying to be patient, LOL.

Walter Sobchak

April 22nd, 2009
12:03 pm

SOS and N8 Realax Isenberg is on the braves board of directors he is protecting his people.

GTSteve

April 22nd, 2009
12:04 pm

I am sorry, but it still seems the same to me. They just seem dead like they don’t even care if they win or lose.

Isenberg

April 22nd, 2009
12:04 pm

I’d like to hear some intelligent arguments as to why Cox should go — I’ve yet to read any posts that make a lick of sense.

Bobby Cox doesn’t lose a fly ball in the lights every night, nor does Bobby Cox make costly errors and base-running mistakes on a nightly basis.

Sure, as the manager he needs to find a way to prevent these mistakes. Ultimately, if anyone is to blame, it needs to be the coaches (Which I understand once again are under Cox).

Cox hasn’t done anything ANY other manager wouldn’t do. Give me a break, fellas!

McFann Ô

April 22nd, 2009
12:07 pm

Thanks for the new Blog, Ms. Rogers!

So David Ross is back in at catcher, and while he’s no McCann…

Course, McCann is not McCann right now, either, so really

Sam 95

April 22nd, 2009
12:08 pm

I agree with whoever posted “where were the rally caps last night”. In the past every Brave player would be standing right in front of the dugout. Last night down 1 in the 9th w/base runners on 2nd and 3rd and no one out the players just sat there looking tired and ready for the game to end. I don’t know if it’s lack of chemistry, players giving up or Coaching. I just know it looked bad!

Jeff321

April 22nd, 2009
12:08 pm

I woke up this morning and felt extremely good! Ya know why? Because I knew Cox would get absolutely skewered on this blog without any of my input ALL NIGHT LONG!

Keep ‘em coming TRUE BRAVES FANS.

Tom Hawk

April 22nd, 2009
12:11 pm

Heap is back! I thought you were taking a couple days off?

C's

April 22nd, 2009
12:11 pm

So do people think Diaz catches that ball if we have a different manager? Or that Schafer doesn’t overrun 2nd base if we have a different manager? Or that either Norton and/or KJ hit a sac fly if we have a different manager? Or that Prado doesn’t take off for 3rd with 2 outs and Chipper at the plate if we have a different manager? Or Chipper doesn’t boot the ball if we have a different manager?

So a simple managerial change and all of these things don’t happen? That’s amazing!

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:12 pm

“Wren and Bobby are not to blame for these losses. The players on the field are not executing. They deserve ALL of the blame if you ask me.” C’s

I’m not going to argue with you. The players are VERY MUCH to blame. But ask yourself this. If you have a kid that repeatedly doesn’t clean his room, and the parent never insists on him/her doing so, who’s to blame? If you have a dog that pisses on the floor, yet never get’s trained to not do so, and not disicplined when it fails to follow the “rules”, who’s to blame?

Listen, I’m not really comparing grown men (being paid a TON of money) to dogs and kids. But ultimately, like it or not, the buck stops with Bobby. He has shown with Andruw in the past, and Francoeur last year, that these guys are above the team, and the outcome of the games and subsequent season, by “letting them play through” their troubles.

If Bobby isn’t going to hold the players responsible, then HE should be held responsible by Wren.

So, either way (directly or indirectly) based on the results, Bobby is to blame. If the manager isn’t to blame, then why have a manager? Clearly Chipper is smart enough to fill out a lineup card, right? Derek Lowe could decide who comes in from the pen. After all, once the rotation is set, a 3 year old that can count to 5 can keep the “order” in line, right?

Jeff Blauser

April 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

bravofan, why not call up timmy thomson to take the PhD qualifier? He done aced all his spellin tests last year and memorized all his times tables!

Let’s call up all our minor league talent now. Surely they’ll turn this team around. After all, they’re “can’t miss” prospects.

Jeff321 Unbeliever

April 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

Jeff321 drinks unhealthy amounts of Hatorade.

Chris

April 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

“Cox hasn’t done anything… Isenberg

NOW you’re starting to make sense. Keep up the good work.

brewdawg

April 22nd, 2009
12:14 pm

Isenberg,

Don’t hold your breath. I’m not saying the posters aren’t intelligent, but they aren’t going to change their position on the evil, twisted, conniving, and above all diabolical Bobby Cox. You’d think the Braves were the only team in the majors that hasn’t been to the postseason for 3 years in a row. But there is no point in arguing for Bobby Cox. You will just be told how dumb, brain-washed, and unworthy of living you are. The only advice I can give you is not to do the same.

PMC

April 22nd, 2009
12:15 pm

I think the malaise is an extention of the last several years really. It’s not just that it is early it is. It’s great they had a good opening week. This team lost 23 one run games last year though much of which a product of injuries, bullpen woes, and lack of offensive production. The same things that have cost them thus far this year. To be positive, they did not make the same mistake this year that they did with Mark Teixeria. They did not mortgage some really good talent (Hanson, Heyward, Freeman etc.) to try and make a run. That’s going to be to our benifit soon. They did make a decision on Boyer without dragging it out who just couldn’t throw strikes, he’s got good stuff, maybe he will in St Louis.

This year is an average team. It just is, that is thier makeup. Things look pretty good for the future though past this year.

Run Heap Run

April 22nd, 2009
12:16 pm

I love those Dos Equis commercials. One of the best ad campaigns ever.

Scuba Steve

April 22nd, 2009
12:17 pm

Again…does anybody know when DOB will be back???

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:17 pm

Random

You’re 100 percent right. Couldn’t be more correct by saying that the problems of 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and now 2009 are of completely different nature. Which leaves us one constant my friend… Bobby Cox.

Ultimately, the past 4 seasons, his teams have found endless ways to lose. You name it, it’s happened. Bad defense, bad baserunning, bad fundementals, losing balls in the lights, injuries, bad pitching, etc…

Do the math.

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:17 pm

Here are the coaching changes I would consider if I were the Braves FO (Given I’m not and given Bobby Cox can stay as long as he wants to).
1) Chino Cadahia needs to go. First of all, it’s not good for the development of your staff to have someone who has no chance of ever becoming manager as the bench coach. Also, bench coaches are responsible for defensive alignments and Cadahia has made a fool out of himself with those for the past 2 years.
2) Brian Snitker needs to go as well. How many times have you seen Snitker throw up a “go sign” on someone as they round third on their way to getting thrown out by half a mile or throw up a “stop sign” when the ball’s still at the outfield wall? He’s pretty inept at doing his job and he needs to go.
3) I’m not a fan of Roger McDowell. He had a pretty un-conventional delivery when he was a pitcher. Plus, I can’t help but blame McDowell for some of the injuries last year. I mean, he’s telling the pitchers how to warm up, keeping an eye on their pitch counts, limiting their innings, etc. I’d let him go too. I may be completely off-base here. I’m confident I’m not off-base on my previous two firings, this one I may be.
4) I’ve never heard of our Strength and Conditioning coach, but most of our players lack strength and conditioning all-together, so I’d fire him.
And that leaves Bobby Cox, Terry Pendleton, Glenn Hubbard, and Eddie Perez. I like Eddie Perez to take over when Bobby retires, but he’s so good at being a bullpen coach (plus he’s a former catcher), I like him in that role at the moment. TP I’m OK with at hitting coach I guess. I don’t know how we’d improve that so he can stay put. That leave Glenn Hubbard as the only internal option for Bench Coach, which I don’t like, so I’d bring in Julio Franco to fill either that role or 3B coach, probably 3B coach. Fill the strength and conditioning coach with someone good at that job. There are plenty of minor-league flameouts that are more in-tune with today’s game than Roger McDowell so replace him with one of those cats. And Bench Coach goes to I don’t really care who. Someone who has a good idea of fielding.

Thrillhouse44

April 22nd, 2009
12:19 pm

Listen, I’m not really comparing grown men (being paid a TON of money) to dogs and kids. But ultimately, like it or not, the buck stops with Bobby. He has shown with Andruw in the past, and Francoeur last year, that these guys are above the team, and the outcome of the games and subsequent season, by “letting them play through” their troubles.

N8, many people believe that playing through slumps is the best way to break out of them. (Some prefer the fat chick as the “slump buster”, but that’s a totally different subject.) How does Andruw affect this year’s losses to the Nats? How has Francouer’s struggles in 2008 made them skid this year? Blaming Bobby’s past mistakes on the current slide doesn’t hold much water. You haven’t mentioned that Tex was allowed to play through a slow start last year and he eventually turned things around. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with letting players play through slumps.

Braves bound for Cellar?

April 22nd, 2009
12:19 pm

its the whole teams fault. they went out there in the 9th and were givin the win, but they didnt seem to care, looks like they went up there saying damn i’m ready for dinner, and to pick up my pay check. In all situations all we needed was a routine fly ball??? KJ has been hitting them all year cant get it done. Escobar has no patience and i realized he is one of the slowest players to play SS. How many DP’s is he gonna hit into in the 1st innning of a game. its a complete joke, how can this team contend when we cant bew a team the refers to the others as Makor League players as if they aint.

brewdawg

April 22nd, 2009
12:20 pm

N8,

The Braves made the playoffs in 2005. Bash away, but do it with correct facts.

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:20 pm

Great post at 12:12 N8. Scuba Steve, I believe he’ll be back after the Washington series, but he may be back after the Cincy Series.

C's

April 22nd, 2009
12:21 pm

Again, I say a few of these guys execute just the simplest of baseball fundamentals, and no one is calling for Bobby’s job. As a matter of fact, we’d be right up there just a couple games behind the Marlins. Ergo, this is not Bobby’s fault. It is his job to put these guys in the best situation to succeed. And he is dong that. These guys are just playing below themselves. Another manager isn’t going to change that.

He is somewhat to blame, but not enough for him to lose his job. JMO

Chop Chop

April 22nd, 2009
12:21 pm

Bobby presided over a team that made the postseason fourteen straight times. A failure to do so in 2009 would constitute four straight missed postseasons. He turns 68 in a month. It does not take a thinking man (not many of those here, of course) to see that his time as manager is nearly up. If the team were winning, it would be easy for fans, no doubt with tears in their eyes and songs in their hearts, to watch him ride off into the sunset, but, alas, the team ain’t.

A winning season in 2009 with no postseason is not good enough. In my opinion, it’s postseason or bust in Atlanta. Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me. Amen.

(Ahhh, it’s nice for a Lutheran to throw in an apocryphal Martin Luther quote every now and then.)

Run Heap Run

April 22nd, 2009
12:24 pm

Hey Tom Hawk, when I’m at work doesn’t count LOL. I will suffer in the name of procrastination.

Sandlot

April 22nd, 2009
12:25 pm

Thanks for the new blog, Carroll. :)

I was wondering if there’s an update on Glavine yet, as well. Or is he still shut down waiting for the inflammation to subside?

Chop Chop

April 22nd, 2009
12:26 pm

N8,

If Random isn’t feverishly working on a post to destroy your comment about “doing the math,” he’s not Random.

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:27 pm

brewdawg

My facts are just fine my friend. YES, they made the playoffs in 2005. They finished the season 29-28 after August 1st, (which is officially the beginning of mediocre baseball), and were bounced from the playoffs 3 games to 1 by the Astros.

But thanks for the advice.

The Optimist

April 22nd, 2009
12:28 pm

Pessimism

1. A tendency to stress the negative or unfavorable or to take the gloomiest possible view: “We have seen too much defeatism, too much pessimism, too much of a negative approach” Margo Jones.
2. The doctrine or belief that this is the worst of all possible worlds and that all things ultimately tend toward evil.
3. The doctrine or belief that the evil in the world outweighs the good.

Now, are you a…

1. pessimist – a person who expects the worst
2. defeatist, negativist – someone who is resigned to defeat without offering positive suggestions or
3. doubter, skeptic, skeptic – someone who habitually doubts accepted beliefs

Because if you are, then you lead a miserable life with no joy and are thus evil. Which of course is the antithesis of being a Braves Fan.

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:29 pm

What’s the deal with Jonathan Venters? Anyone have an idea?

dude

April 22nd, 2009
12:31 pm

We have to have new approaches to the game because the majority of our guys are sub. avg to avg. baseball players. We have no speed and live off Chipper Jones(who at this stage of his career is always going to be about 75%-90% healthy so stop it with the “when Chipper gets healthy”). No steroids have changed the game and we must change our approach from the coaching stadpoint.
And to the blogger that wrote that these guys ‘don’t wear rally caps anymore’…my god man…. THEY have never been on a winning team in the PROS.
They don’t know how to win. Did you not watch all of the 1 loss games last year?

brewdawg

April 22nd, 2009
12:31 pm

2005 was the year of the Baby Braves, widely regarded as one of Bobby’s best jobs. Of course, I’m only counting the opinions of those that are actually involved in the game of baseball, and not miserable fans who blog about it. So that’s my mistake probably.

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:32 pm

re·al·ist (r-lst)

1. One who is inclined to literal truth and pragmatism.

2. A person who accepts the world as it literally is and deals with it accordingly

3. Most Braves Fans are NOT realists.

ease19

April 22nd, 2009
12:32 pm

PWHjort – It stands to reason that you might be off base…You usually are in any case.

Pete

April 22nd, 2009
12:32 pm

C’s: “So do people think Diaz catches that ball if we have a different manager? Or that Schafer doesn’t overrun 2nd base if we have a different manager? Or that either Norton and/or KJ hit a sac fly if we have a different manager? Or that Prado doesn’t take off for 3rd with 2 outs and Chipper at the plate if we have a different manager? Or Chipper doesn’t boot the ball if we have a different manager?”
C’s I agree with you, but let me present the other way also. Cox has received many accolades in the past for his managerial skills, so do you think Francoeur would have had a poor rookie season if Cox were not here? What about McCann? Would Fred McGriff not have set the team on fire when he came over if Cox were not here? What about Maddux, Justice and Smoltz, etc…..just average pitchers/players without Cox?
My point is that if a mgr. (not just Cox) gets accolades when players do well, then you cant just rule him out when players do not execute. In other words, if a mgr. deserves no blame because the players are not executing, then why does he receive accolades when they do execute? You cant have it both ways.
And I agree with you that Cox should NOT lose his job….no way.

GTSteve

April 22nd, 2009
12:32 pm

I am with you Sam95, they just don’t care

Don

April 22nd, 2009
12:35 pm

Any news on whether or not any of the Braves injured themselves getting out of bed or in the shower this morning?

The wren and stimpy show

April 22nd, 2009
12:35 pm

N8 if I recalled wasn’t that the game LaRoche jogged half A$$ around third and got gunned at the plate. Then the Astros came back and we lost. Yeah Bobby sucked back then too.

Random

April 22nd, 2009
12:36 pm

dude (12:01 pm): “This is the same team from last year. Same results. We cant HIT!!!!!!!
We cant. We just cant.
Those of you critical (Ironic isnt it?) of those who may have something negative to say are living in the 90’s.”

Well, most of us are critical of those who have something erroneous or stupid to say (which does seem to include a vast majority of “those who may have something negative to say”, now that you mention it).

For example, “This is the same team from last year.” Such BS!!!

Did the Braves have Anderson or Schafer last year? No. One problem with this year’s team is Anderson’s injury and Schafer’s rookie ups and downs. Those were not problems last year — last year’s team had different problems, which Wren tried to fix in the offseason.

Did the Braves have Lowe, Vazquez or Kawakami last year? No. They had a worse rotation than this year. Did they have Moylan or Soriano or Gonzalez? Pretty much not. Did the bullpen have the same problems the first half of last year as this year’s bullpen? No.

This is so not “the same team from last year” — anyone trying to say it is deserves to be criticized. Whether or not they’re negative.

Fletch

April 22nd, 2009
12:36 pm

I’m sorry but McCann, you need to suck it up and get in there tonight. Either you can see or you can’t see. And since you played last night, caught pitches and even through a runner out, I’m thinking you can see. Anyone who has ever worn contacts knows that you don’t need to get used to them. You put them in and if they fit, you can’t feel them.

Luckily Ross has been solid, but McCann…suck it up buddy!

Marc

April 22nd, 2009
12:36 pm

For the most part the Braves have been out hitting the opposition every game; we just need to get them at better times and we’ll be set.

Ruh Roh

April 22nd, 2009
12:37 pm

This team has no fire. Bobby needs to light that fire. Somebody get some matches……..

Chop Chop

April 22nd, 2009
12:38 pm

PWH,

Isn’t it up to Bobby to make changes to his coaching staff? If he really is bulletproof, I don’t think Frank Wren is going to ask for sacrificial lambs. That’ll be left up to Bobby.

Come to think of it, the only Braves coaches I know of that have been fired during Bobby’s tenure are Clarence Jones, Merv Rettenmund and Frank Fultz. That’s three guys in, what, twenty seasons? (If I forgot someone, anyone can feel free to jump in and let me know.)

ProScout90

April 22nd, 2009
12:38 pm

It’s early. However, their offense is centered around a player who is only expected to play about 70% of the games, that’s not a lot when your talking about an every day veteran who is a HUGE contributor to your team. If JoJo gets more opportunities from now till the break to right his ship, and doesn’t, expect him to probably be bate to get another bat in here. This team is having it’s holes exposed early.

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:39 pm

very mature, ease19.

N8

April 22nd, 2009
12:41 pm

brewdawg

For starters, I’m not miserable. I’ve enjoyed the games this year so far. It’s entertainment. I’ve stopped blogging inning by inning during the game, because it’s draining (especially with this group).

But I agree with you. 2005 was a nice job of managing by Cox. I’ve NEVER been afraid to admit his strengths or his moments of triumph. I’m NOT a profound Cox basher, like others on here. I just think his time to step down has come.

Why do you think that it’s so rare, and widely thought of as strange, when a guy steps down while “one top” like John Elway did? It’s because most try and hang on too long, when people around them are afraid to force them out, and for the love of the game, the individual themselves are not ready to walk away. That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t.

But back to the Baby Braves. My point (as it has ALWAYS been), is that this core group of players doesn’t know how to win. Period. They just done. They did it in 2005 as you mentioned (but there was PLENTY of veteran leaders guiding them along the way – along with Bobby), I admit that the young guys that year brought life to the old-timers.

But since being given the opportunity to be “handed the baton”, they’ve failed. Miserably. Smoltz is gone. Glavine is on the DL. Chipper is FANTASTIC (when he’s actually on the field).

I like McCann. Hard to believe it, but I like Francoeur (think he could use more than 2 days in the minors to find himself – thought it appears he’s headed in the right direcion this season).

Are these kids “over-rated” by us fans, or under-performing? I don’t have the answer, which is why I answer the question. I “think” that it falls more on Bobby. These guys have shown me enough ability that I think they’re talented enough to do it. They just need to be guided properly, and shown that losing and failing is unacceptable.

But this is McCann, Francoeur and Kelly’s 4th season. They’re not babies anymore. Time to man up.

Sandlot

April 22nd, 2009
12:42 pm

It seems to me that a true realist is one who realizes that it’s entirely too early to count just about anyone out this year.

Having grown up watching the truly dismal 80’s teams, I’m still feeling optimistic. Let’s get everyone healthy and get some timely hits and see what happens.

The Optimist

April 22nd, 2009
12:42 pm

A fan, aficionado, or supporter </strong is someone who has an intense, occasionally overwhelming liking and enthusiasm for a sporting club, person (usually a celebrity), group of persons, company, product, activity, work of art, idea, or trend.

Then most Braves bloggers are truly not fans but evil.

C's

April 22nd, 2009
12:42 pm

Pete – I guess my answer to your question is in my post following the one you quoted. I believe Bobby’s job is to put these guys in a position to succeed. I believe his is doing that. Just like he’s done year after year. He put McGriff and Maddux and McCann in a position to succeed based on their skill level. And they responded to these situations by playing to that level. He’s doing the same with these guys but the difference is that these guys just aren’t executing the simplest of baseball fundamentals. They are playing below their level. Therefore I can’t lay all the blame on him. I lay some on him, just not close to the amount that some others want to.

Slugger

April 22nd, 2009
12:43 pm

Braves need to have a little fly ball practice with runners on 3rd and less than 2 outs.

We used to crank the pitching machine up to about 100 MPH and move it half way b/w the mound and home plate. The damn ball nearly rises to begin with, and coach still made us hit fly balls. If we took the pitch and it was a strike, we had to leave the box right there and run all the way around the field until we got back in the box.

There’s no real end, you either hit a fly ball that gets the job done or you’re running around the whole field.

It became amazingly simple to hit a sac fly after that.

(we also did the same thing with hit/runs and the curveball machine while trying to execute a ground ball on a hit/run).

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:45 pm

I’m pretty sure the Front Office is “literally” responsible for the hirings and firing of coaches, but it’s probably Bobby’s call in the end. I mean, Bobby obviously doesn’t have the right to hire or fire anyone, his employer does. But I have a feeling his employer does whatever he says.

C's

April 22nd, 2009
12:46 pm

They do need fly ball practice. And fielding practice (in the lights!). And base running practice. And bunting practice. And…… ;)

jonatuga

April 22nd, 2009
12:46 pm

C’s

Good post. I agree with you on that.

MFin04

April 22nd, 2009
12:47 pm

No one is giving up…We’re are just collectively ticked off at the performance the Braves are putting on night in and night out. We’re aren’t being pessimists or negative…we are being realists and calling it like we see it. If a guy gets caught stealing third with 2 outs…and the best hitter in the NL up…and someone calls him stupid…they are correct. The guy was stupid for even attempting to get to third…it does you very little good….the risk/reward ratio is like 97/3…..not good ideas.

Slugger

April 22nd, 2009
12:48 pm

RE: above, if we took a strike OR hit something that didn’t get a runner in from 3rd (meaning HR, fly ball or gap shot), we had to run all the way around.

At first the physical drain hurts you mentally and makes it difficult to execute, then your total exhaustion brings you to an even more simplified mental state (with only one objective).

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:49 pm

This team seems defensively lackadaisical and it seems like we have just enough starting pitching to keep us in games but not enough bullpen or offense to win the games our starting pitching keeps us in.

Slugger

April 22nd, 2009
12:50 pm

Who cares about the Braves for today, it looks like they don’t right?

Let’s all divert our attention to team that plays with some enthusiasm: Atlanta Hawks.

I love watching Horford, Smith and Marvin Williams when we’ve got the momentum. Doesn’t it remind you of the way Atlanta Braves played in the early 90s?

Sam

April 22nd, 2009
12:50 pm

Can we turn this into a Hawks blog instead ??? Those folks are atleast doing so much better than this lousy team.

Sam

April 22nd, 2009
12:51 pm

GO Hawks !!!!

Duke

April 22nd, 2009
12:51 pm

Put Kotchman in the 2-hole and Yunel in the five spot. Then see how things may change.

Slugger

April 22nd, 2009
12:51 pm

Not to mention Josh Smith 1-hand alley-oop dunking about 5 times Sunday night. It was like I was watching a live broadcast of NBA JAM for the Sega Genesis.

Scuba Steve

April 22nd, 2009
12:51 pm

Thanks PWHjort.

ease19

April 22nd, 2009
12:51 pm

PWHjort – Maturity? On this blog? Oh that was funny! Hey man, I usually disagree with you, so what? You are entitled to your opinions and that I will always respect that, but don’t be so sensitive.

PWHjort

April 22nd, 2009
12:53 pm

Likewise on the sensitivity, ease19.

Slugger

April 22nd, 2009
12:53 pm

If Josh Smith were an Atlanta Brave he would miss a wide open slam dunk, and it would bounce halfway across court where the opposing player would hit a pull up three.

Add your comment