LaRoche’s back…and his future

(Staff writer Carroll Rogers is filling in for David O’Brien today.)

   So I’m actually squinting as I type, which is a good sign that we might actually get this game in today, or at least the first part of it! I’ve heard that if we could somehow get this game to be played by 3:30 or 4 p.m. we might be OK. Now, I haven’t covered a two-hour game in about 15 years, ahem, but I think we’ve got the man on the mound to deliver a fast game and that’s Mr. Tommy Hanson.

   Mr. Cliff Lee should do his part as well. It’s been an unbelievable week, leaving the ballpark at 2:30 a.m. on Wednesday night and actually coming back the following night as a regular gal, with a guest in town who wanted to come, and sat through another two-hour rain delay.

   But somehow, some way they’ve been getting them in, and I trust that’ll continue today.

   The lineup looks a little different today. Adam LaRoche has a sore back which he injured diving for a ball Friday night. He aggravated it last night when swinging at a changeup and had to come out of the game. Today he took some swings in the indoor cages to try and make a go, but he felt it as soon as he built up to game intensity. So he’ll sit this one out and see what New York brings tomorrow.

   Yunel Escobar is also out of the lineup because of a sore left elbow. He took a pitch by Pedro Martinez off his elbow in last night’s game and said this morning it hurts to grip the bat tightly. Brian McCann gets the day-game-after-night-game rest.

Here’s the lineup:

1. McLouth CF

2. Prado 1B

3. Jones 3B

4. Diaz RF

5. Anderson LF

6. Infante SS

7. Ross C

8. Conrad 2B

9. Hanson P

LaRoche wants multi-year

   First off, Chipper Jones is in full-out lobby mode on behalf of his buddy and friend Adam LaRoche. He wants the Braves to re-sign LaRoche to a long-term deal and he has told Braves general manager Frank Wren so.

   Jones didn’t divulge what was said in that conversation this morning but he did have plenty to say about the subject. And before we even get into it, he said he’s not lobbying because Adam is his friend.

   And it’s not because he wants a reason not to move to first base. He doesn’t plan to do that anyway, and he puts that in no uncertain terms.

   “That’s not an option,” Jones said. “I guess if I have to say this through the newspaper (so be it), don’t even approach me. I’ve never played on that side of the field. I would be lost. People think that playing first base is an easy position; it’s not an easy position by any means. It’s a lot of footwork and a lot of things you take for granted as being easy that are not easy. I can still play third base. And I’m going to play third base. What if (Freddie) Freeman comes up in 2010 or 2011, you move me back? I’m not going to be a pogo stick.”

   He got enough of that with the left field thing.

   But he thinks LaRoche has been a big reason why the Braves, in his words, that the Braves went from a .500 team to one that’s 10 games over .500 this morning. LaRoche is hitting .356 (57-for-160) since the Braves traded for him on July 31, and he’s led the team in home runs (12) and RBIs (33) since then.

   “I’m doing this because this team is a completely different team since he got here,” Jones said. “He’s a good chemistry guy, and given 162 games here, a fresh contract, peace of mind, would do a world of good. You might even see him take it to the next level. He’s got that kind of ability.”

   Jones acknowledges Freeman who’s on is way through the system and in Class AA Mississippi this past year. But Jones argues there are no guarantees there.

   “We don’t have a first baseman next year and there’s no guarantee we’ll have a first baseman for a couple years,” Jones said. “And you have the best first baseman that’s going to be on the market in house now. So why not do all you can to lock him up. What else does a guy have to do? He’s produced since he’s been here. He’s been one of the key reasons we’ve gone from a .500 club to 10 games over since he got here. He’s an incredible defender. A 30-home run guy in a pitcher’s ballpark is a commodity that needs to be treasured.”

   At what price? LaRoche is making $7 million this season. You’d think the Braves would need to be in that neighborhood to sign him beyond this season. Chipper alluded to the fact that they’re not there yet.

   “I know he loves playing here,” Jones said. “I know he loves the guys. I know his family likes it here, but he’s not going to give us as big a hometown discount as what I think the Braves are thinking.”

   I asked LaRoche about it this morning and he said he doesn’t even have a figure in his head yet, as far as salary goes. His main objective, after going year-by-year for the first six years of his major league career, is to get a multi-year deal. And he wants three years.

   “As much as I like it here, if there’s an opportunity to play, to actually settle in somewhere for a few years, I’d have to really look into that too,” said LaRoche, who has a wife and two young kids looking for the same thing. “Ideally, if it was up to me, I’d want to do a few years here. Again a lot of that will be determined this offseason when we find out what teams need and the Braves sit down and figure out their long-term plans. I’m not one, though, that is out for all the money I can get period.”

   I think with Freeman waiting in the wings, the Braves would have a hard time going three years. And whether or not they’ll have the money to re-sign LaRoche for one or two years depends on a lot of what they do with Javier Vazquez and the back end of their bullpen.

   LaRoche also knows after watching free agency last winter, multi-year deals might be scarce. And he might be forced to take a one or two-year deal. But if somebody else comes up with a three-year deal to his liking, he’s gone. But if it’s a one or two year deal, and that’s the best he gets, and it’s the Braves, then there you have it.

   Game is about to start. Better file!

985 comments Add your comment

glord1

September 20th, 2009
1:53 pm

I know Diaz is an adventure sometimes in RF but is there anyone more fun to watch hit and run the bases?

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
1:53 pm

cabravesfan

Oh yeah, I’ll take them now, too…just a good thing ssoR is catching instead of BMac–otherwise the ump never would have called that “the bat knocked the ball lose”…woulda just let the Reaper have the stolen base.

Thanks for the new Blog, Ms. Rogers!

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
1:53 pm

I will be glad seeing Heyward in Loaf’s Spot this year, Loaf hasn’t hit all season other than June and July…

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
1:54 pm

Correct that…I meant to say next year in my post in regards to Heyward

bravesgrl4life

September 20th, 2009
1:54 pm

Okay, so we’re not gonna walk him. Lets see if TH can strike him out. Chances looking good. Notice, I did not do that stupid “first” thing.

Beautiful, Tommy :grin:

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
1:54 pm

Ryan Howard, “Hoe Sit Down!”

Roja

September 20th, 2009
1:56 pm

Given that there are only 14 games left in the season and that we aren’t out of it (at least not mathematically) yet, just what is McCann being “rested” for? Golf in 2 weeks??

bravesgrl4life

September 20th, 2009
1:56 pm

‘Cause I wasn’t first :oops:

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
1:57 pm

“But he thinks LaRoche has been a big reason why the Braves, in his words, that the Braves went from a .500 team to one that’s 10 games over .500 this morning. LaRoche is hitting .356 (57-for-160) since the Braves traded for him on July 31, and he’s led the team in home runs (12) and RBIs (33) since then.”

And Yet Bobby Continues to hit him no higher than 7th, Go Figure?

Thanks Bobby!

curtis jones

September 20th, 2009
1:57 pm

The first inning is a good example of why most of us want the HOF manager to watch games from the comfort of his farm next year.

2 players he never wanted to start this year (Prado and Diaz), who rode the bench while KJ and Frenchy were automatic outs, sparked the team with their hustle and talent. Meanwhile, broken-down Hoss continues to clutter the 3-hole. We have a new automatic out.

And Chipper, I don’t want you at 1B next year either. It’s been great to see good defense at one of the infield corners. We’re stuck with you, but hopefully the new manager will slide you down to 7th or 8th.

glord1

September 20th, 2009
1:58 pm

Hey I was first for the first time ever. Cool.

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
1:59 pm

Curtis Jones

Co-Sign on your last post

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
1:59 pm

Oh, Matty. You’re a hoot!

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:00 pm

Matty is VERY fun to watch… ’sept when he K’s.

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:02 pm

McFann-

I beg to differ…MattE is especially fun to watch when he K’s (how can you not love those crazy swings? ;) )

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:03 pm

Roachy Will be the first person (And should be only) Person that the braves resign in the offseason

Roachy resigns for 3 years 22-25 Mill, “Bank On It!”

Feel free to mention anyone else that we need to go after in the offseason

I would love for us to try to talk to Jason Bay…I might be living a fantasy in thinking that we have a shot to get him but it would please the fans if the F.O. at least made an offer to him in the offseason

Carroll Rogers

September 20th, 2009
2:03 pm

the flood waters have brought out these tiny little gnat-like bugs that are gnawing at my arms. So if i go insane today, now you know why!

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
2:04 pm

Oh, Look! It’s Kelly Johnson Brooks Conrad?!

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:04 pm

Co-Sign Carroll

The sight of Gnats in my face makes me twitch like “Smokey” on “Friday”

I hate bugs!

Carroll Rogers

September 20th, 2009
2:04 pm

Roja, I believe it has more to do with the 148 games the Braves have already played than the 14 they have left.

Kelly's Johnson

September 20th, 2009
2:05 pm

OK..I’ve seen enough of Conrad…get my boy Kelly in there

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:09 pm

Besides Carroll Mac has an OPS OF .596 against LHP. I love Mac but Ross should get more at bats in this situation.

Roja

September 20th, 2009
2:10 pm

So in other words these last 14 games mean nothing??? Bobby sits McCann more in a season than Johnny Bench sat in his first 3 years. Bench only sat 60 games his first 6 years.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:11 pm

Brooks Conrad. Half man, half amazing.

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:14 pm

cabravesfan

Haha, yeah…but you know me–I HATE K’s!

glord1

ssoR has an OPS of .581 against lefties to go with a .211 AVG…but anyway…

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:15 pm

McFann-

I guess I’m a little slow- just figured out why you are typing Ross’s name backwards…cracked me up :lol:

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:15 pm

Geez, I knew I despised the Reaper…if he wouldn’t have gotten ejected, this wouldn’t have happened!

It’s impossible for him to please me. :)

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:17 pm

cabravesfan

No sweat! Glad ya like it! :P

Yeah, that was just one of those things that struck me so funny I had to pay tribute…

Carroll Rogers

September 20th, 2009
2:18 pm

Roja didn’t say he would sit for the last 14 games.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:22 pm

God he sucks. :roll:

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:22 pm

Ibanez is really good at defense…

Danga

September 20th, 2009
2:22 pm

Ibanez is a terrible LF. AND he is almost as slow as GA.

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
2:23 pm

Chipper’s swing has looked better the past couple of games.

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:24 pm

McFann – I agree that Ross had not faired much better against LHP but that in 38 at bats not 151 like McCann. Im just saying if you are going to give Mac a day off this might be a decent day to do it.

curtis jones

September 20th, 2009
2:25 pm

Johnny Drama gets his 3rd extra base hit in 29 games!

TnBrian(Vazquez ace 2010)

September 20th, 2009
2:26 pm

Chipper sounds a little pushy about them resigning LaRoche. Well, I’d tell him whether or not we sign LaRoche won’t matter if you continue to play like crap.

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:27 pm

Brian McCann gets the day-game-after-night-game rest.

Shoulda saved yourself some keystrokes and just typed “DGANG”. ;)

Roja

What is he being rested for? Um…like, the rest of the season…DUH. (Here ya go, Soph.)

You want him to play everyday in this heat and pass out? OK, that’s your business…

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:27 pm

I bet you would, Brian.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:27 pm

Tommy Hanson = Ryan Howard killer.

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:27 pm

Nice

Sit Down Howard!

Roja

September 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Neither did I. But McCann has played 4 less games this year than Chipper has before todays game (120 at 3b for Chip, 116 at catcher for McCann). Not often you see Chipper playing more than the young studs.

curtis jones

September 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Sure would love to have McCann’s bat in the lineup more often on his days off from catching. Today would have been a good day to see him play in LF like he did in the WBC. Best hitter on the club, and his defense can’t possibly be worse than Loaf. As Cox continues to mis-manage, McCann will be worn out by the time he’s 30.

Carroll Rogers

September 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

some kind of sign? the sun was out, it was raining and ryan howard was at the plate.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Or maybe it’s Ross that’s the Howard killer. :lol:

Just kidding McFann!

Dutchie

September 20th, 2009
2:28 pm

Reds beating up the fish 4-0. Lets get this game won.
Go Braves!

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:29 pm

glord1

Oh, I totally agree that this is a good day to give BMac a rest. Heh heh…not entirely sure why I gave ssoR’s numbers…didn’t even think about the number of ABs. Sorry ’bout that… :P

TnBrian(Vazquez ace 2010)

September 20th, 2009
2:29 pm

It’s amazing that a 23 year old has the intellegence to crowd Howard with pitches, but our vets have too much pride to do that or don’t realize it.

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:29 pm

curtis jones

September 20th, 2009
2:25 pm
Johnny Drama gets his 3rd extra base hit in 29 games!

I agree that I can handle Chippers opinions in the paper much better when he is hitting .300 and driving in runs.

Roja

September 20th, 2009
2:30 pm

I’d like to see the best players in there ’til it’s over. And preferably BEFORE it was over too (like Diaz and Prado weren’t). And I don’t remember Bench passing out in the heat.

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:31 pm

Roja

BMac went on the DL in late April/early May. Keep that in mind.

curtis jones

He played like…an inning of LF in the WBC. :lol: Don’t know if it would be worth the risk…

RHR

Yeah you are! :P

Bobby's Cox

September 20th, 2009
2:31 pm

It’s amazing that a 23 year old has the intellegence to crowd Howard with pitches

Intelligence must be a west coast thing…. ;)

01HAWK

September 20th, 2009
2:31 pm

Can the camera guys stop showing Booby Cox when he is picking his NOSE !!!!!!!!!!!!

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:32 pm

Intelligence must be a west coast thing

I would have to agree ;)

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:32 pm

Bobby’s–how’s the marathon training going?

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:32 pm

Roja

Yeah, Bench played up North. My guess is that it gets hotter down here.

TnBrian(Vazquez ace 2010)

September 20th, 2009
2:33 pm

RHR, you just don’t get the point of a blog, do you? Would I be that rude to Chipper if I were GM, no. Would I tell him that we would like to see him step up and be the guy we saw the 1st half of ‘09? Yeah, damnit, I would. Of course I’d phrase it different.

Bobby's Cox

September 20th, 2009
2:34 pm

Hey Steve,

It’s a tri…and it’s going good. The swimming is progressing very nicely, and that was my biggest concern. Only 5 more weeks of training if you can believe that…

Moring cabraves….

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:34 pm

Fun fact:

Since June 1, Ibanez has hit .248/.316/.474 (.790)

Since July 11, his OPS is .760

Since Aug 1, his OPS is .717

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:34 pm

In my opinion Hanson pitch that is most impressive is the fastball that runs away from LH and into RH. That is the pitch that got Howard and the one that will take him from very good to special.

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
2:34 pm

Intelligence must be a west coast thing….

Try telling Tom Glavine that.

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:35 pm

Great to hear, Bobby’s. Best of luck!

Bobby's Cox

September 20th, 2009
2:35 pm

Cabraves & Steve….

How did the whole USC, Ohio State thing go down between you both? Probably made things worse after the loss yesterday I bet…

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:35 pm

Morning Bobby :)

haven’t seen much of you on the blog lately…guess you’ve been busy training ;) What Triathalon are you doing?

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

TnBrian

“It’s amazing that a 23 year old has the intellegence to crowd Howard with pitches, but our vets have too much pride to do that or don’t realize it.”

I was thinking the same thing when I saw the Howard K

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

Oh boy, it appears I’ve got DOB’s power of jinx…

Hanson, Chipper, Rossy, Loafy, Matty D, Marteeen and Omar all suck.

You’re welcome.

Tomy Fournier

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

atlanta…sock!

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

Bobby-

all good- Steve’s a good guy, dispite his allegience to that school ;)

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

Steve what was that? You have to wait for him to make an out before you post that. You were worse than Joe Simpson on that one.

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:36 pm

Hanson sucks today. Pull him.

Bobby's Cox

September 20th, 2009
2:37 pm

Man if we can cut this deficit by another game by Tue or Wed, we have a good shot. Colorado has a tough schedule to finish the year while ours is very favorable.

Not looking good right now…

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:38 pm

Tommy is getting everything up and his offspeed stuff aint biting.

Mitchell

September 20th, 2009
2:39 pm

Give me a f*ing break.

Who is that crazy b**** who keeps screaming every time they get a hit.

This is BS.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:39 pm

Is David Ross from the west coast?

iowabrave

September 20th, 2009
2:39 pm

Need to end this now, Mr. Hanson. Can’t expect to get too much more off of Lee with the JV roster we have today.

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
2:39 pm

ROSS!! Great Throw!!

Tomy Fournier

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

I mean….suck…or sucker…what ever…ahhhhhh!!!!

Soph

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

lol McFann, you’re first duh’s on the house. Enjoy.

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

I was just about to call “Game Over” until I saw that great play by D-Ross!

Nice!

glord1

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

That throw may have kept us in the game

Bobby's Cox

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

Hanson, Chipper, Rossy, Loafy, Matty D, Marteeen and Omar all suck

How dare you Steve….

Soph

September 20th, 2009
2:40 pm

*your not you’re

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:41 pm

This game is over folks. The Braves wont score another run, not with this crappy lineup.

cabravesfan

September 20th, 2009
2:41 pm

RHR-

Nope but he did play for the Dodgers for the first 2 years of his career…must have picked it up when he was here ;)

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:41 pm

“Can’t expect to get too much more off of Lee with the JV roster we have today.”

Nicely Put! At least the Falcons are winning at halftime!

Mitchell

September 20th, 2009
2:41 pm

Nick, are you serious?

WTf man?

They got two runs. BFD. Good thing we have our worst batter in the 3 spot.

McFann :Ô:

September 20th, 2009
2:42 pm

Thanks, Soph! :)

Yeah, nice play, ssoR.

iowabrave

September 20th, 2009
2:42 pm

Strange play by Feliz. Putting the hammer on Hanson that inning, and you give him a chance to get a free out. Happy to take it, tho. Need a couple bloops this inning.

Tomy Fournier

September 20th, 2009
2:43 pm

Mr. RHR..from the “wet” coast

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:43 pm

1-2-3 inning

Steve from OH

September 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

RHR–you gonna take that stuff from Tomy, bro?

Tomahawkin

September 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

Loaf can try to get 3000 hit just not in a braves uniform!

I will be glad to be rid of him

Roman Gal

September 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

I’ve always believed that all women are beautiful in their own way. But now I have an exception…

All women are beautiful in their own way, unless they’re wearing Phillies crud.

Mitchell

September 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

Come on. Get that in the gap.

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:44 pm

Only 14 more games of GA, Thank God!

Dan in NJ

September 20th, 2009
2:46 pm

If you’d not look at the standings, one would think the Braves are in 1st place and not the phillies the way they are resting their players. BUT… I know I know …poor guys making MILLIONS need a day of rest.

Tomy Fournier

September 20th, 2009
2:46 pm

people…this is the END…THANK TO MR. MORON COX…WITH THIS LINE UP///FOR GET IT…SAY GOOD BY AND SEE YOU NEXT YEAR…HOPPING WITH NOT WITH THE MORON MANAGER COX…OK???…HOPE….PLEASE!!!!

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:46 pm

Steve – yeah I probably will today.

RHR

September 20th, 2009
2:48 pm

Oh its Brooks Conrad. We’re about to take the lead.

Nick

September 20th, 2009
2:48 pm

Conrad sucks. Do we have any good AAA players not named Heyward?

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