3:54 pm April 29, 2009, by David O'Brien
May 1st, 200911:05 am
I agree with you that the slumping Diaz and KJ need to be rested in favor of others that are hitting better.
I also like the way Tony Larussa uses his entire lineup as opposed to just the normal starters.
Our manager has a different way than LaRussa. He like to let his guys play through their slumps.
Wish he would change his mind, but not counting on it….
And Coach, the running game is important but it is not the main problem with the Braves right now.
Lack of hitting is the problem.
May 1st, 200911:06 am
Coupla’ things. I just don’t get it. You tellin’ me that this guy in Dallas is the only hitting coach around that truly understands the swing and can correct things that all the others can’t? I mean if the talking head, know-it-alls on the MLB Network that ‘went off’ on Andruw yesterday saying that ‘he was back’…’as good as ever’..and broke down his swing to show us what he was doing right now versus what he had been doing – I mean if they know enough to show us that then surely hitting coaches (including ours) would be able to do the same thing. You’ll never make me believe that the Braves couldn’t have salvaged a potential HOF-caliber center-fielder if they had just admitted to themselves that there was somebody out there they could have put on the payroll to actually fix these guy’s hitting problems – even if you kept TP on as an ‘Executive’ Hitting Instructor and had others doing the actual work.
And as for Hampton, I don’t know what the Braves offered him to re-sign here, and it may have been a lot less than Houston, but the fact that we paid him tons of money for ‘not pitching’ should have stood for something and he should have given us one more shot at having him healthy. Just like Paul Byrd. We brought him back…he pulled up lame…we paid him not to pitch…and then when he got well, promptly signed with the Dodgers or somebody. What is it about these guys? Or is it us? Certainly loyalty doesn’t figure into it much, but you’d think that they’d be a bit embarrassed for taking all that money for all that time. Embarrassed enough to try and make up for it with at least an attempt to help win some games for their benefactor. Then again, if we shell his ass tonight maybe it would be the best outcome after all.
May 1st, 200911:09 am
Coach I usually read your posts but after your 1039 am post I will never read another one. That was not necessary.
May 1st, 200911:17 am
CB…are you serious…aren’t we all adults here?
May 1st, 200911:29 am
Correct me if I’m wrong BUT aren’t the Hawks 1 for 1 in their last ROAD playoff game?
<strongscuba stevearen’t we all adults here?
as a matter of fact, no we arent. i mean…I am. but not everyone is.
May 1st, 200911:30 am
DOB, Thanks for the restaurant recommendation, I live near Oak grove. The Oak Grove meat market is in that same area and has great meat and take out meals if you need a quick lunch (although I’m sure you have been there already). Monterrey’s mexican restaurant is also very good and is located a little further east on Lavista near Northlake.
May 1st, 200911:31 am
Good News / Bad News
We play the Astros for 3, the Mets for 2, and then the Marlins for 2
First, the bad news… We’ll be facing the Astros 2 best starters in this series (Oswalt and Hampton), and then we’ll have to face Santana in that 2-game Mets series.
The Good news… As long as the 5-day rotations hold, we will NOT see either of the Marlins young aces (Johnson or Volstad) in the upcoming Marlins series.
Then, in the Phili series, hopefully we won’t have to face…. um…. never mind.
Here’s hoping we can find a way to go 4-3 over these next 7 games against division rivals until McCann’s return (and hopefully Anderson’s as well) for the Phili series. That is, assuming his eye is doing ok. What’s the latest on that??
Steve from OH
May 1st, 200911:32 am
DAP, I was going to say just about the exact same thing…
May 1st, 200911:36 am
The Mets enjoyed an off day yesterday as well, so they could go with Santana on either of the two upcoming games vs. Atlanta (Monday or Tuesday).
The way it looks now, in all likelihood, we’ll face Santana in game-1, and then we’ll have Kawakami on the mound for the second game. Ouch. If we don’t win the Houston series, and then face NY under those circumstances… things could go south in a hurry.
But hopefully we’ll win the Astros series. We really need to.
I wish the Braves would just go ahead and pitch Kawakami in whichever game Santana starts. That way, at least we’ll have a good chance to at least split that series.
May 1st, 200911:39 am
Oh yeah…forgot about McFann.
May 1st, 200911:40 am
So when is Tommy Hanson going to get a well-dserved callup to the bigs ?
May 1st, 200911:44 am
Scuba Steve, don’t forget that “lurkers,” any number of which could be kids. That said, I wasn’t offended by it in the least…it’s Coach. That’s what he does. Hey, I’m an adult, and I can take it just as well as it can give it, but I do think a bit of moderation would be more appropriate. But whatever. Not a huge deal.
May 1st, 200911:45 am
as soon as we need a 6th starter Gangus
May 1st, 200911:48 am
MLB Probable Pitchers has Santana Tuesday against KK.
May 1st, 200911:49 am
Hanson dominated winter ball, had an awesome spring, and is pitching very well at Gwinnett (AAA). Kawakami is throwing BP….and Hanson I think will be better than Jo-Jo Reyes…guess Braves brass still believe in Kawakami ? He ought go down to Gwinett and get straightened out…
May 1st, 200911:52 am
i think coach proved we arent all adults here just by using language like that. thats just me.
May 1st, 200911:57 am
Something tells me our bats will wake-up this weekend.
May 1st, 200912:01 pm
Gangus, the Braves aren’t going to give up on KK after only 4 starts…and considering he’s been adequate in 3 of them, I don’t see why they would just yet. Plus, he’s under an 8MM/year contract, so you don’t just send that guy to AAA in April, do you?
Jo-Jo has been very impressive so far, so I think he’s earned another few starts. Besides, Hanson still needs a bit of work on his change, his fastball command, and managing his pitch counts in Gwinnett (his last start was much better in those regards). And by bringing him up later in the year they push his free agency back and don’t have to risk him being a super-2 player. I doubt that’s as muh of the reason as him just maybe needing a bit more refinement, but it’s something to think about.
Not that he needs refinement to come here and be effective, but with a bit more work he’ll become an ace, and more quickly, I think. The dude just has tremendous potential, so there is really no need to rush him, especially given our good starting pitching so far.
May 1st, 200912:02 pm
That said, I cannot wait until he is in our rotation…he’s gonna be something special (Heyward too).
May 1st, 200912:04 pm
Coach (10:39 am): “if either you or Steve in Ohio think that any team with a non-existent running game can compete over the long haul of the 162 game marathon, you’re both out of your [GOLDURNED] MINDS.”
Coach, weren’t you the wanker making a causal connection between the Braves’ dismal NL Stolen Bases ranking in 2006 (16th out of 16 teams — “dead last”, you noted) and their dismal seasonal performance (79-83)? And in 2007 (14th in SBs & 84-78)? And last year (13th in SBs & 72-90)?
Yes — yes, you were.
Well, the Braves also ranked “dead last” among NL teams in SBs in 1996 (14th out of 14) — their record was 96-66) and they went to the World Series.
They ranked 12th out of 14 in 1995, the year they won the World Series.
They ranked 13th out of 14 in 1994, a year they were on pace to win 97 games.
They ranked 12th and 13th out of 16 in 2002 and 2003, each season winning 101 games.
I imagine it’s all in how you define “non-existent running game” — for you apparently, it’s any which way you want.
PS: Or perhaps all you were trying to say is you can’t win a marathon without running? Okay.
You know it's coming
May 1st, 200912:21 pm
Great. Now Coach is going to yell at David O’Brien and tell him that this is all his fault. How he shouldn’t allow bloggers like Random and Steve from Ohio to bully him around with scary statistics.
You know it’s coming….
May 1st, 200912:27 pm
For those who feel I am wrong for standing up for my beliefs- its all cool. You may call me a kid for the rest of my life.
Carroll, don’t know if you’re reading this, but that was a real nice feature you did on Lowe. Like the Diaz/Schafer story, this one was insightful and very well written. You seem to have a knack for the feature-type stories, and I know they have to be more fun than game caps (it’s fun to editorialize a little!). Kudos.
May 1st, 200912:30 pm
No, everyone not an adult here. Besides, adults should be able to express their opinions without using foul language.
P-Town Brave(Schafer for leadoff)
May 1st, 200912:36 pm
Read my 2:00a and 2:14a on Pg 16…It will tell you close to the same thing of what I said about LaRussa and how Cox should run out the 5 men that can’t seem to separate themselves (Johnson, Escobar, Infante, Prado, Diaz)
I hope so too…Mac is one of my favorites and I also hate to see bad things happen to good people…I also really hope the eye thing gets figured out for his health as well…the first thought that came to my mind when they talked about it being serious was Kirby Puckett…and I really hope we don’t end up down that road.
May 1st, 200912:40 pm
DOB, in fairness on that 1-12 Hawks record in thier past 13 playoff road games, they are 1-1 in their past 2 playoff road games, and the 4 games they lost last year were to the eventual NBA champs. That being said, I’ll be suprised if they make it to a game 6 with Cleveland.
May 1st, 200912:41 pm
I still think it’s funny that so many people are talking about team speed and ONLY assessing SB’s. It’s not the case.
And to compare the 96 Braves being dead last in SB’s and using that as a guide to compare how a team can win without SB’s??? Come on. Really?
We had 5 of the regular 8 in the lineup with 23+ HR (we’ll lucky to have ONE reach that this year).
Oh yeah, we had three guys (Smoltz, Glavine and Maddux), that comined for 54 wins between the three of them, while ALL having ERA’s under 3.00, while piling up 734 innings between them (and average of 244.2 each), and a guy named Wohlers closing, who had 39 saves (remember his first real meltdown was in the WS that year against Lyritz).
Add to that, 5 of our top 6 relievers had ERA’s under 3.20 (with Bileki adding excellent spot starting and bullpen work with a sub 3.00 ERA).
That team could have won the NL East with ZERO SB’s. But every single one of those guys could run. Javy and McGriff were the “slowest” guys on that team of the regular 8, and each could run circles around McCann and Kotchmann, along with a hobbled Chipper these days.
So puuuuuleeeez. Stop using the mid-90’s Braves as examples of a team that can win without SB’s. These last three seasons of Braves baseball, don’t even come close to comparing to that core of players. Period. End of discussion. The ONLY legit connection to those teams, is the name on the back of Chipper’s jersey and Cox.
Other than that, that group of players might as well have been 50 years ago. This Braves team has as much connection and right to be compared to that group of players, as they do the Yankees teams of the 70’s, or for that the Yankees of the 90’s.
The real question is what THIS GROUP of players needs to do to win. NOT what the 90’s Braves did to win.
Until we’ve got 4 or 5 allstars in our regular lineup everynight, along with three legit Cy Young candidates in the rotation, why bother comparing what those 90’s Braves teams did?
May 1st, 200912:43 pm
Total lack of class. Taking God’s name in vain. Why don’t you just curse yourself if you feel the need to abuse somone’s name.
May 1st, 200912:46 pm
The phillies play the mets 5 times in the next week, but are going to miss having to face Santana. Figures.
May 1st, 200912:49 pm
Ultimately, this team is doomed to fail. No speed. No power. Shoddy defense, and slightly above average pitching from Vazquez, JJJ and Lowe. Certainly not the trio of Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz in their prime.
Don’t get me wrong, those three are certainly good enough to lead a team to the playoffs, if the other area of the team would be good enough. But those three aren’t that good (on a consistent basis), to make up for no power, no speed, and weak defense (I’ll leave Cox out of this).
Then when you take Chipper and McCann out of the mix? This offense is just flat out BAD. Period. This team would have had a hard enough time competing WITH those guys in the lineup. But without them, we’re in the hurt bag.
Something has got to be done. Wren needs to add a legit power bat in the middle of the lineup, or a killer top of the order guy to pair up with Schafer (when he’s ready to hit 1st or 2nd) that can run and spark the offense.
I was against adding a big power bat, dude to assuming that Chipper and McCann would be there. Well, it’s time to assume that we might not get much production from them if this keeps up. So SOMETHING has to be done, or all that money spent on Lowe, Kawakami and trading for Vazquez will be wasted on a mediocre team that can’t score runs.
Unfortuneately, it’s too early in the year to start making trades for impact players, but by the time it’s not to early, then it might be too late to dig out of the hole.
Wren is really stuck between a rock and a hard place right now. But he made this bed (the roster he assembled), so I guess he’s gotta sleep in it.
The Braves have the exact same record this season as they did last season after 21 games.
The Braves should be able to sweep the Astros. It’s going to be a long day against Santana, especially with KK on the other side.
May 1st, 200912:50 pm
I agree with you about comparisons, you need to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges. However, barring major trades, this present team has more potential to hit for power than it does to improve it’s running abilities. Is that your point, that trades need to be made to get back to the playoffs? And not trades for power guys but speed guys?
May 1st, 200912:52 pm
Just got done watching the Kutner suicide episode of House. Powerful stuff. One of the peaks in one of the better TV dramas.
May 1st, 200912:54 pm
CB (12:27 pm): “For those who feel I am wrong for standing up for my beliefs- its all cool. You may call me a kid for the rest of my life.”
Get the chip off your shoulder, kid — you’re swinging at shadows.
May 1st, 200912:56 pm
Thanks for the Hanson update. I have him on my reserve fantasy roster, am a starter down, and figured I could get “the truth” from the Brave fan locals. Everything is economics these days. I vaguely recalled Kawakami got a decent $ deal. Overall Jo-Jo #’s aren’t impressive, but aren’t horrible either. Braves with Hanson are doing what Rays are doing with David PRice, what Orioles are doing with Matt Wieters, and what Rays did with Evan Longoria in ‘08 and what Brewers did in ‘07 with Ryan Braun…thx for filling me in.
It seemed strange that Hanson didn’t break camp with Atlanta. And he’s had nothing but good #s, even tho he’s only 1-2 overall. When Glavine couldn’t be SP#5, I figured Hanson would get the call. I guess he’ll fill in for the next SP injury once we are into late May or June. I’ll practice my patience.
Gummy Bears...Bouncing here and there and everywhere....THEY ARE THE GUMMY BEARS!!!!
WOW we really need more fans to show up at the games…
Again I say if we had a BIG name like GRIFFEY!!!! Thanks Wren more butts would be in the seats..Sadly we have names like Gorky, Prado, and Diaz…
Looks like it will be easy to get to walk down to those front level seats soon.
Obviously the numbers are there to be had. But I failed to mention that while the 96 Braves were dead last in the NL with SB’s, they were 2nd in HR and 2nd in BA, 3rd in OBP, 2nd in SLG, 2nd in OPS.
That would make up a bit for last in SB’s, huh?
The 2009 version? 16th (out of 16) in SB’s, 8th in BA, 8th in OBP, 10th in SLG, 9th in OPS. Can you say middle of the pack?
The pitching, on the other hand, is in the upper half of most categories. We actually lead the league in fewest HR allowed.
May 1st, 200912:57 pm
Just looking over some of the Braves stats. Does Bennett have the most misleading ERA in all of baseball?
There hasn’t been a single game that he’s entered with runners on, when at least one hasn’t scored.
So, stats cam be misleading sometimes.
May 1st, 200912:58 pm
Oh come off of your high horses folks, this is one of the least offensive blogs in terms of the language used, it is also a very passionate blog and from time to time there is bound to be some intemperate phrases, but nothing like that seen on other forums. Have a look at one of the Yankee or Mets blogs if you want to see how some people behave.
I think that we are very well behaved (not always sensible, but generally not profane) and it is rare that something really offensive is posted, and if it is (I recall something very distasteful about McFann a few weeks ago) it is leapt upon quickly.
If we sanitize the blog so that any mild expression is banned then we would lose much of the passion, debate and humour that we turn up here for.
So, stats can be misleading sometimes.
May 1st, 200912:59 pm
DOB that was a GREAT episode of House. They actually had you believing for a bit, that he might have been murdered. The following episode is a good one too.
Didn’t see that coming at all (my wife reads the TV and all that crap – so she knew that he was leaving to work for Obama’s staff – so it got “spoiled” for her). But agreed. GREAT episode for one of the GREAT shows on TV.
THe Braves have outhit their competition head to head statisticly speaking.THings like hits, the Braves have more; avg. the Braves have hit for a higher avg., they have surprisingly out homered their opponents, out slugged their opponents, more total bases than their opponents. THey have however scored 5 fewer runs than their opponents. All of that to say that statistly speaking as far as hitting goes the Braves aren’t that bad. WHere they are bad is in hitting in clutch situations late in games when driving in a run ties or takes the lead.
May 1st, 20091:00 pm
the Suicide episode of House, I could not watch because I knew what happened before I watched it, Hate when that happens!!!!
May 1st, 20091:01 pm
there are many differences between this team and the ‘96, but the point made with the ‘96 team is a good one. SB totals arent the end all. thats all that was intended to be gleaned from that, and its true. pointing out the better offense and dominant pitching is moot.
also, i think you are a little to down on this offense so far. it has looked bad because of injuries. brian mccann by himself probably would have made the difference in some of those close games, so him coming back will help tremendously.
yeah we need another bat…we all knew that coming in, but i think youre going a little extreme with your “doomed to fail” mentality.
by the way, how about lost this week? i thought it was very good this week. it feels like all season they have been good episodes that give us just a little bit, and ive been waiting for that BIG one…like they have spent all season setting stuff up….
Run Heap Run
Again I say if we had a BIG name like GRIFFEY!!!! Thanks Wren more butts would be in the seats..
You cannot be serious.
May 1st, 20091:04 pm
N8 (12:41 pm): “So puuuuuleeeez. Stop using the mid-90’s Braves as examples of a team that can win without SB’s.”
Did they win?
Did they steal a lot of bases?
So they are PERFECT “examples of a team that can win without SB’s.”
As long as some guy is gonna be claimimg that you can’t win period without a ton of stolen bases period, those years are a handy enough refutation. And totally valid.
A team can win without a ton of stolen bases.
In order to do so, they may need more power than we got now, better pitching than we got now, all your yada yada yada — but that wasn’t the topic under discussion.
May 1st, 20091:05 pm
Monty, my point was that something has to be done either way. I’m more of a speed, defense pitching kind of guy. Rather than relying on HR (because come playoff time, good pitchers don’t give up HR – thus why I feel our past playoff bound teams failed – and why other “lesser” hitters got big hits off of our HOF bound pitchers).
But, I can concede that during the 162 game schedule, having a powerful lineup (and good pitching and defense), can mask other weak spots.
A manager has to have SOMETHING to work with. Right now, Bobby can’t run or wait for the 3run HR. So any move, would spark this team. But like I said, it’s too early, nobody is gonna trade us a big bat (speed or power), without giving up JJJ, Medlen or Hanson. So, what does Wren do?
Unfortunately, I think he has to ride it out, and hope we don’t fall 15 games out, by the time teams want to start making deals.
But, the lineup CANNOT remain as it is (without big contributions from Chipper and McCann) and expect to be successful. I think Escobar, KJ and even Francoeur and Kotchmann were ready to be big contributors IF they weren’t relied upon to be the heart and sould of the team.
Without Chipper and McCann, this lineup is doomed, IMO.
May 1st, 20091:06 pm
Good call on the comparison and thank you as I did not want to have to start into another argument as to why the 96 team didn’t have to steal bases, hit n run, etc. and this team does…
Aside from the obvious in that we are hitting a guy in Kotchman cleanup who has ZERO power capability…
And you’re right about one thing…they need to be Top 3 in either BB, K, and SB or top 3 in BA, OBP, SLG…otherwise we do what we’re doing now, which is wasting good pitching efforts.
I think the real point being made is that we’re never making it to the playoffs with the current lineup and group of guys…
Interjecting myself into this, I feel there are only 3 positions on this team that can’t be replaced, and thats Mac, Chipper, and Schafer. Schafer simply because we have no adequate CF to replace him. Now Kotchman I could be able to throw in there IF we had other power hitters on the team. His main problem is that he plays a power position. BUT everyone else as far as now is playing as though they’re replaceable pieces, from Francoeur to Kelly to Yunel, down to Diaz.
There have to be multiple standouts on the team and then some key role players to get anywhere…For example:
LA – Manny, Kemp, Ethier, Hudson, Furcal (5 standouts as of now)
St. Louis – Pujols, Ludwick (2 standouts, along w/ 3-4 middle range players better than ours)
Those were just 2 ex. while there are many others.
May 1st, 20091:09 pm
No ones on a high horse. Lets just keep the gutter talk off the blog. Maybe you take God’s name in vain,and don’t mind your kids listening to it, reading those words etc.. however it is offensive to me,I don’t use it and I don’t want my kids hearing it if it can be helped. Personally I could care less how bloggers in New York talk, hopefully they won’t become the standard for this blog.
May 1st, 20091:11 pm
Monty- I second that motion. Well said!!
May 1st, 20091:13 pm
I think we all, including myself, are overreacting to this teams offensive troubles so far. Yeah, they’re pretty bad, but it has to get much better once Mac and if he gets back to his ‘08 self, Anderson are back. Not a whole lot Chipper can do when Kotchman is “protecting” him. Once Mac and G.A. are back and if this team is still struggling to do anything at the plate, then I’ll panic.
Some of us just get bored and magnify the negative. 10-11 ain’t great, but we’ve been in 95% of the games we’ve lost. A loss is a loss, but things can and probably will turn around, soon.
May 1st, 20091:16 pm
DAP and Random, I agree with you guys. That’s where I differ from Coach. I agree with him that team speed (not SB’s) is important. It helps defense, it helps going 1st to 3rd. It helps stretch singles into doubles, it helps stretch doubles, it helps runners score from 2nd on hard hit singles, it helps runners score from 1st on doubles that hit the gaps.
I’m sorry to ramble on about this stuff. I know that you guys get it. Again sorry for babbling.
But I’m just trying to make my stance clear that when I mention team speed, it has little to do with SB’s. That 96 team while lacking SB prowess, had more team speed than this team does, IMO.
As far as the pitching and other offensive stats being a “moot point”. I disagree. By dominating in EVERY OTHER facit of the game (which the 96 – and other 90’s Braves teams did), Bobby had ZERO reason to run with those teams.
Regardless of Grissom’s injuries he had, he WAS coming off of 4 seasons of big SB numbers (76 in 91, 78 in 92, 53 in 93 and 36 in the strike shortened 94 season). So he COULD have ran Grissom more if he wanted to. But he didn’t need to in both 95 and 96. Remember, Grissom had 9 SB’s in 30 playoff games in 95 & 96 (while being caught only 2 times), compared to 56 SB’s in 327 regular season games those years. So when he was needed to run, Bobby sent him and he did the job just fine.
Bobby chose NOT to run in the mid-90’s because he didn’t need to.
With the power outage we currently have, it would be NICE if he was able to run more, but with this speed (or lack there of), along with guys not being very adept at it… he can’t.
So, in all fairness to Bobby (roster moves and lineup choices aside), he’s left with little to no weapons on which to make any “moves”, while being unable to sit back and wait for the 3run HR.
Wow. Did I just stick up for Bobby? Yikes. Time to take a blog-break. LOL!
LT- A Blogger
May 1st, 20091:17 pm
Thought this weeks episode of House was by far best of the season- hallucinations, ear phone, kidnapping, and a Karamel.
I see your point, but I also see Steve’s…I feel that you’re right in a sense that you shouldn’t be able to curse like a sailor, and I’ll be honest that I have used the words on here w/ an asterisk of course, BUT I also feel that in the proper setting and without going overboard, we should be able to express opinion freely and openly. This board generally lets us do that, so thats why most keep coming back.
Is it really a true message board/blog if its completely censored?
Just ask Bill Shanks…he controls what comes in and out of his board and whats read is not whats said, but only what he allows to be said.
Is that better?
Let it go already! This team will not win games like the 96 team…it just won’t happen…and we “maybe” need some power…There is no MAYBE about it…its pretty cut and dry that if we aren’t going to steal bases AND hit and run on a consistent basis, then we need more pop in the lineup.
May 1st, 20091:25 pm
If this team wins, it will be because the pitching becomes “superior”, which is possible, and the offense becomes “adequate” which is also possible. (not saying either or both are guaranteed, but they’re possible.)
May 1st, 20091:27 pm
Spooneybarger – Now that was a BIG name…
“Coach I usually read your posts but after your 1039 am post I will never read another one. That was not necessary.”
CB, I commend you.
I’ve always heard language like that is used when folks have an extremely limited vocabulary – Coach proves the point.
May 1st, 20091:28 pm
“Again I say if we had a BIG name like GRIFFEY!!!! Thanks Wren more butts would be in the seats..Sadly we have names like Gorky, Prado, and Diaz…”
I hope you’re being sarcastic.
Oh man…I can’t stand to see bad things happen to good people! That why that Extreme Makeover: Home Edition cann be such a powerful show…
Anyway, your comment about Kirby Puckett caused me to Google him. Hu…let’s just say it’s a good thing I didn’t know about that when this thing with Mac first started going down! That’s strange stuff, though. Hopefully they cann fix BMac’s eye (from what he said the other day, those new contacts worked much better), and, like you said, not go down that road. But his game at MB Wednesday night did put my mind at ease.
I read on the “Official Site” that he was gonna be re-evaluated when he got back to Atlanta, so I’m guessing that means yesterday.
May 1st, 20091:34 pm
Something tells me our bats will wake-up this weekend.Mixxo
Yeah, doubt it.
Best case scenario – ‘feast or famine’ offense comes back with a brief power surge. Braves line up is 2 legit hitters away from resembling a functional offense, but enough of the gloom-and-doom…
On the bright-side, Houston is one of the only teams in the NL with a crappier offensive output than the Braves. The Astros are 14th in the NL in runs scored, and near the bottom in every single major offensive category (14th in runs and avg, 15th in OBP, SLG, OPS).
Surprisingly, the Astros are 3rd in steals, and last in the NL central standings (team speed is worth a lot when you can’t hit).
Carlos Lee has 5HR and 17rbi, so they at least have someone who can mash (albeit, with a putrid .299 OBP with only 6 walks).
And Berkman has 5HR and 10rbi… with a .162 BA (ouch) – still good for a .326 OBP (17 walks).
May 1st, 20091:38 pm
“If we sanitize the blog so that any mild expression is banned then we would lose much of the passion, debate and humour that we turn up here for.”
Steve McP, as a Christian, Coach’s outburst was highly offensive to me. If you know even one person, adult or child, will be offended, then why do it? It certainly added nothing to the conversation – never does.
I guess that Coach has created a pretty good discussion on speed and it’s importance to a teams success.
He wants us to believe that just having increased team speed will make the Braves a better team. Actually, with his normal negative pronouncements, his view is the team CANNOT succeed withOUT speed.
Random has showed us that past Atlanta Braves teams have won without speed.
N8 suggests that those team had lots of power and thus did not NEED speed.
In pats conversations on this subject, Coach tries to interject that the old Cardinal teams of the past and teams like the Twins that run and play good defense are the BEST way to play the game.
I think in MANY pats posts Steve from Oh and Random have showed that speed in the line up by itself does not make a team a winner.
From my viewpoint, I think the Braves need to use the speed they HAVE by running more, hit and running more and being more aggressive in the running game because they do NOT have the power they have had in recent years.
I think a lot of us are arguing semantics here when we all really believe the same thing, when you don’t have lots of mashers, you need to rely less on station to station baseball and try to generate runs. Speed helps for that. Running helps for that.
While BMac is out, we can count on Chipper being pitched to like the he was in the Cardinals series. Why give Chipper a pitch to beat the team? Let Kotch or Frenchy beat me, not Chipper.
Bobby has got to find a way to get the guys who are hot ON THE FIELD and hitting in front of Chipper to FORCE the other team to pitch to Chipper.
Bobby has got to find SOMEONE who can hit in the 4 hole and drive in a run when needed.
Sorry for the rant!!
May 1st, 20091:45 pm
Great post flange1.
May 1st, 20091:46 pm
Will any current Brave hit 20 homeruns this season?
Schafer and Ross are essentially being wasted in the 7 and 8 spots. There were a few games they both were getting on but of course the pitcher was up next and killed the rally. I say give Ross a shot at scoring runs…and give Schafer the chance to get up more…by hitting higher in the lineup. Schafer has shown great patience at the plate as of late…and Ross looks like he has some pop in his bat. It couldn’t hurt. Kotchman would be a good 8 hitter since he seems to get on when it never matters. He has failed to hit in big RBI situations. Doubles with no one on is not exactly what a cleanup hitter is supposed to do. His speed also makes him a liability…cannot score from second on any single….and can’t even score of shallow/medium sac flys.
May 1st, 20091:51 pm
20 Individual Homers – No
20 Team Homers – More Likely
J williams (12:57 pm): “There hasn’t been a single game that [Bennett]’s entered with runners on, when at least one hasn’t scored.”
This is both misleading and inaccurate.
First, in his 10 relief appearances, only 4 times has he come in with runner(s) on. Talk about small sample sizes.
So, four times, with 5 runners inherited. Three of the 5 runners he did allow to score.
However, he did not allow the runner he inherited in the 6th inning on 7 Apr at Phila to score.
PS: This comment is also misleading, but at least not inaccurate.
May 1st, 20091:53 pm
I was also only expressing my opinion on what was said by Coach. I am not here to be anybody’s censor. I was only finding what was said to be offensive to me. It is not necessary for an adult conversation to offend others when you are attacking somebody’s baseball opinion. Please just respect others.
May 1st, 20092:00 pm
You guys kill me. Your plan is to constantly shift the lineup around to have the “hot hands” be more effective? Have you ever heard of buying high and selling low? Because that’s exactly what you do with that kind of “strategy”. “Hot hands” have used about 80% of an offensive burst by the time it’s noticed by such knowledgeable fans as we have here. Likewise, most of a slump is in the wind by the time you can recognize it for a slump.
So, ideally (for some of you), the best time to take advantage of a hitter going good…is just before he won’t be. And the best time to minimize the underperformance of a player when he struggles…is just before he’s due to break out of it. That about cover it?
And people wonder how Bernie Madoff was able to fool so many people.
May 1st, 20092:03 pm
So you think the average fan is going to get excited about a guy named “Martin Prado?” compared to “Ken Griffey Jr”
Im sorry but you have to have a big name to get the fans to come to the park, especially when your team is middle of the road….Chipper has been here for a long time and it would have been exciting to get a new player in the clubhouse to at least say hey the braves have Griffey now, people would have been OOOHHH and Ahhh…. Go up to the average fan and say “Hey the braves have Gorky Hernandez or Martin Prado!” They will say did they bag my groceries at Kroger yesterday? The names are what brings the fans to the park when a team has yet to be a winner….
Now that brings me to all the 90s talk, the BRAVES were great then, but the 90s are gone the next “90s” will not be here till 2090.. And Brian McCann will be about 90 more than likely lol. My point is that era was wonderful and exciting but its gone! I doubt ANY major league club will have that success ever again, including today’s braves…So we need not bring up that past anymore that is a problem that has bugged me alot with Bobby, and the media, and the players they all talk to the past, talk about the future!!!
Oh and who is bill shanks?
Take the Bible beating elsewhere fellas. It’s just as offensive, especially when it’s coming from folks who I can’t honestly recall ever voicing a memorable baseball opinion on this blog. If you don’t talk ball, but wanna talk God, I gots to think you be a troll. It’s cool to have your beliefs. It’s offensive to think you need to impose your beliefs and heightened sensitivies on others.
May 1st, 20092:04 pm
N8 (1:16 pm) –
Agreed — well-put.
I suspect that Coach would agree with you as well. (If I had not just now jinxed it by saying so.)
May 1st, 20092:05 pm
N8As far as the pitching and other offensive stats being a “moot point”. I disagree.
they are only a moot point because we were talking specifically about SB totals. obviously those things you pointed out had ALOT to do with the ‘96 team going to the WS.
The official language of the military is cursing. It’s not necessary, but that’s what soldiers do.
Coach is a soldier of sorts. He proudly bears the guidon of Co. SB, 1st MIB BN.
May 1st, 20092:06 pm
yes. i believe chipper and mccann both will, at least.
May 1st, 20092:13 pm
youre out of line. no one is bible beating or talking about God, or imposing beliefs.
talk about heightened sensitivities.
May 1st, 20092:14 pm
Now that we have the subject back to baseball what has been memorable that you have said Willy Wally?
May 1st, 20092:18 pm
Yeah, sorry, DAP, Bible beating was a bit strong. Is take the biblical babble battle elsewhere better?
P-Town Brave (1:17 pm): “Let it go already!”
Let what go?
“This team will not win games like the 96 team…it just won’t happen…”
I never said that they would.
“and we “maybe” need some power…There is no MAYBE about it”
I never said that there was.
“…its pretty cut and dry that if we aren’t going to steal bases AND hit and run on a consistent basis, then we need more pop in the lineup.”
I’ve never argued against that.
It’s clear that you haven’t been following the argument, and are unfamiliar with the principals involved and their history.
May 1st, 20092:20 pm
N8 (1:45 pm): Great post flange1.
Ditto for me — great post!
May 1st, 20092:25 pm
Asking Random to let something go of something is like asking for our clean-up hitter to hit a home run every once and a while
May 1st, 20092:30 pm
flange1 – Yes that was a great post, but if I may? You mention aggressive base-running…I would like to see smart base-running before we try to get aggressive on the base paths. Other than that, I toast you
How much more fun and interesting it would be if the Braves ran out Heyward and Freeman on a daily basis and had a rotation with Hanson minus KK. The current ineup is about as boring and predictable as it gets. No excitement equals fewer fans.
May 1st, 20092:31 pm
Yeah, we haven’t gotten a homer from the cleanup spot since my b-day!
Wayne in Utah
Don’t get so uptight about folks being offended by a poor choice of language. I have typed damn or $hit or hell on ocassion, but I stop at taking the name of God in vain. Just the way I am.
I too get offended by what I consider as poor judgement, such as our beloved Coach has used today.
I also get offended by vulgar language.
To be honest, both have been rare. I think a lot of us are sensitive to these things also to protect the innocence of some on the blog that we don’t want to lose.
Let the man have his say, and then we move on. (assuming CB is male)
I certainly don’t see this type of rebuttal as trying to introduce religion to the blog or “bible beating”.
Now, if you wanna talk politics, then I want to know what has “enchanted” you lately????
May 1st, 20092:32 pm
WW, love the alliteration.
scoots, yes I would like to see more guys in the “playing rotation” when starters are slumping. I agree that it is hard to tell when a slump begins or is ending, but from my perspective both KJ and Diaz have been slumping for a couple of weeks.
I am not of the school to sit them for a couple of weeks, I prefer to give them a few games off here and there and get guys who have been performing better a chance.
Again, I like the way LaRussa uses all of his position players. Guys don’t play everyday and he changes his lineups actively.
Bobby on the other hand would love to run Frenchy and others out there everyday. I understand his way of thinking, but don’t really like it.
Believe me I am not the guy that is saying to bench KJ and Yunel and play Prado and Infante NOW everyday because they are better players.
I just think especially without BMac and GA and with Diaz and KJ struggling, we need to rotate more players into the playing mix.
May 1st, 20092:34 pm
willy wallyIs take the biblical babble battle elsewhere better?
its just as idiotic since you were the first person today to mention the bible.
May 1st, 20092:35 pm
To Braves fans:
What has frustrated you, puzzled you, baffled you and enchanted you most about our beloved Braves this year?
May 1st, 20092:37 pm
Paraphrased from The L.A. Times-Teixeira called his Angels tenure “the best 2 1/2 months of my career. I sat and cried at my locker after that last game in Boston because I knew that was a special group.”
What Mark didn’t mention was the Angels were out of tissue and he had to use $100 bills instead. Word is, he told the locker room attendant he was doomed to fail.
Great points flange!
I think that Frank is going to have to ride this one out. You certainly don’t hear of many big trades this time of year, and short of acquiring a strong bat, I am not sure what other choices we have.
(we could bring up Heyward and Freeman, at the risk of ruining their psyche)
May 1st, 20092:40 pm
I just love it when those guys “cry” in those situations, then turn around and throw it away for hard, cold cash!
Wayne – give me a sec to write it all down first…
May 1st, 20092:44 pm
Thank you Wayne in Utah. Please lets move on.
May 1st, 20092:49 pm
NOW THE BIG QUESTION!!!!
What are you eating for dinner tonight?
May 1st, 20092:54 pm
I don’t understand the speed conversation. This team has no speed thus cannot steal bases consistently? What is the point of running if they get caught? Frenchy got a hustle run the other day…and 9 times out of 10 he should have been out at both third and home if the team didnt mess up. Let me clarifiy…I liked the play because of how horribly we have been scoring runs…but do try that stuff on a consistent basis is more risky than rewarding.
The problem with this team is the offense.
Our leadoff hitter has been non existent (I like Infante there, but with Bobby it will never last)
Our #2 hitter htis too many ground balls and thus turn into fielders choices at second or double plays
Third hitter is still hurting and when he is healthy will be pitched around
4th hitter is injured with vision problems and replaced by a guy that has consistently not driven in runners and cannot score because of his speed
5th hitter…Frenchy is better than last year…not as good as years before that
6th hitter who knows who that is
7th/8th hitters have been Ross and Schafer and need to be moved up in the lineup.
The offense is the teams biggest problem…not necessarily speed.
Piedmont Blues (formerly BravesFan InRockies)
Bobby’s style of handling a roster has completely changed since his Toronto days (and his first stint with the Braves). Back then, he platooned a lot and made sure none of his regulars ever got rusty. Nowadays it seems like he’d prefer to find eight guys breaking camp and play ‘em til they drop (or until one gets hurt, which with Chipper around, guarantees ABs for his backup 3B). His pinch-hitters get plenty of work, but just in that role. His backup catcher typically works with only one starter, meaning his everyday guy might catch 130+ games.
Of course it’s been a long since he was with the Blue Jays, but it is fascinating (and at times pretty frustrating) how his entire approach has changed over the years.
May 1st, 20092:56 pm
Forgot to tell you…The Cat actually caught a vole last weekend! Weeks short of turning 16! And then he brought it into the house strutting like there was no tomorrow. Fortunately I was able to nab him before he could let it go and “gracefully” placed him back outside. No voles were harmed…yet!
Man, do I want the BRAVES to exterminate that $$$$sucking a**hole HAMPTON tonight!!!!
May 1st, 20092:58 pm
Wayne-Nothing has baffled us. We have Nathan to make perfectly clear how bad they are-with all the subtlety of a wrecking ball.
Nathan-Not too sure why you think your point could be any clearer-the rant has remained the same for the entire time you’ve been here. The only difference is that we now know medication wouldn’t help much.
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