Heyward arrives in camp, jaws hit floor

Lake Buena Vista, Fla. – Jason Heyward reported to spring training Monday, then jaws hit the floor. Millionaire athletes reached for words to describe the masher from McDonough, whose already epic physique has become more so.

“He’s an outside linebacker,” pitcher Derek Lowe said of Heyward, who enters spring training with a good shot at winning the right-field job at age 20. “He’s huge.”

“He’s Jevon Kearse – he’s The Freak,” third baseman Chipper Jones said, comparing baseball’s top-rated prospect to the Tennessee Titans defensive end. “I’m telling you, he’s a bigger version of Freddy McGriff.”

Far bigger.

Heyward is 6 feet 5 and 245 pounds, up from 230 last season. The 20-year-old McDonough native insisted he did nothing special this winter to add weight.

“Nothing’s changed, same workouts,” he said. “I’m growing. Twenty years old, growing into that grown-man strength hopefully soon.”

If he’s not there yet, it’s frightening to think what he might be when he gets there.

Most of his added weight appears to have been distributed across his muscular shoulders. Simply put: dude is shredded.

And yet, Heyward has maintained the narrow waist and V-shaped back that he had last spring training. That was when he first impressed Braves players, coaches and team officials with a quiet confidence, respect for others, and a skill set that was off the charts.

He had a big season at three minor-league levels, posting a .323 average with 17 home runs, a .408 on-base percentage and .555 slugging percentage in 99 games, including 49 games in high-Class A and 47 in Class AA.

He had only 13 at-bats in three end-of-season games at AAA Gwinnett, and his Arizona Fall League season ended after four games due to a low-back strain.

But despite the inexperience in the high minors, the Braves say if he’s ready, he’s getting the right-field job – and playing every day, not as part of a platoon.

He’s a five-tool player with a sharp mind and a work ethic that pleases an old manager.

“He’s big and strong,” manager Bobby Cox said. “I can’t wait to watch him swing tomorrow.”

The Braves will have their first full-squad workout Tuesday morning at Champion Stadium, where pitchers and catchers had the run of the place for the past three days.

Other position players weren’t permitted on the field for those pitchers-and-catchers workouts, but they hit in the batting cage beyond left field. Heyward scorched balls into nets Monday morning, then stopped to sign autographs for dozens of fans after a few shouted to him to “pleeeease!” come over as he strode in from the batting cage.

The only person who drew a bigger crowd of autograph seekers Monday was the legendary Hank Aaron, who made his annual visit to Braves camp.

Heyward looked at ease with fans and with reporters, noticeably more comfortable answering questions than a year ago. He’s a non-roster spring invitee for the second time, with a non-roster type of number. No. 71.

“He’s still No. 71?” Jones said. He grinned and added, “I’m going to say he’s not No. 71 at the end [of spring training]. Just a hunch.”

In other words, Jones believes Heyward will win the right-field job. Heyward said he will go about his business the same way he always does.

“No different approach,” he said. “I’ve got to go out there every time like I’m trying to win the job. So nothing’s changed. I think that’s the best way to go about it.”

But what about pressure? Everyone watching, waiting to see how he responds?

“No pressure,” he said, smiling. “I’m playing baseball, having fun.”

Jones was asked what advice he might offer Heyward entering spring training.

“He’ll be fine,” Jones said. “He knows how to handle it. I doubt any of us will have to say a word. I think we’ll just kind of sit back and watch, because the kid has a good head on his shoulders and he knows what he’s got to do.

“He was here last year, and he knew last year that he was going to be in this situation this year. He’s been preparing all year for this moment, and I have no doubt in my mind that he’s going to make the most of it.”

Photo galleries from AJC.com: Meet Jason Heyward | Braves Caravan stops in Henry County

To interact with DOB, see his main blog entry http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-braves-blog/2010/02/22/coxs-first-day…ly-be-his-last/

161 comments Add your comment

And Roodge Owns

February 22nd, 2010
6:13 pm

If Heyward produces immediately, graduating Hanson and him in back to back years is really something. Fun time to be a Braves fan.

lanier

February 22nd, 2010
6:27 pm

What exactly is a 5 tool player? im not a baseball guy but just interested now in the Braves

SeanM

February 22nd, 2010
6:31 pm

Ok….I think I just got excited. I always heard this kid was a 5 tool player, but could it be that the Braves have actually developed…gasp…a true slugger??? I love Chipper, and he has done real well in the homerun department, but there was a big difference between Chipper and Andres Gallaraga(has another human being ever had bigger thighs?)

It would be nice to put someone to rival that “other” guy on the phillies squad…

TROTTINGHOME

February 22nd, 2010
6:39 pm

lanier..5 tool player…

hits for average, hits for power, speed, good defense and strong thrower…i think

tvsportscaster

February 22nd, 2010
6:42 pm

trottinghome, you nailed it, that is exactly what a five tool player is.

ChipperFan

February 22nd, 2010
6:45 pm

lanier,

A so-called “5-tool player” is good or exceptional in all 5 major areas of baseball that scouts can gauge, namely:

1. Hitting for average
2. Hitting for power
3. Baserunning
4. Defensive range / ability
5. Defensive arm strength

ChipperFan

February 22nd, 2010
6:45 pm

woops I was late to that party

lanier

February 22nd, 2010
6:46 pm

Thanks thats were i am confused doesnt fielding figure in?

ugaaccountant

February 22nd, 2010
6:53 pm

Lanier – Fielding is also called defense

Scout Dawg

February 22nd, 2010
7:00 pm

Your right there is a big difference between Chipper and Gallaraga, HGH, and don’t get me wrong I’m not hating, just look at the year by year comparison, But damn this kid could could light a tomahawkin’ fire here and make a hell of a difference in these damn Liberty Media years. And oh yeah Ron Gants thighs were giant redwoods not even a comparison.

@DanWeiner

February 22nd, 2010
7:13 pm

I can’t wait to see him in the lineup in June because the Braves are cheap ass organization that doesn’t care about winning.

Tommy Boggs

February 22nd, 2010
7:29 pm

@DanWeiner is so negative. Jason will get two hits on opening day against the Cubs. Will your cheap ass be in the stands?

RomeDawg

February 22nd, 2010
8:29 pm

I hate to be Mr. Negative, BUT, the way the media is hyping him up he has nowhere to go but DOWN! I think the pressure and expectations are very similar to what Frenchy dealt with, and we all know how that ended. Easy on the young man and let him “earn” all the accolades by his performance on the field in the summer and fall, not now.

Stumpknocker

February 22nd, 2010
8:45 pm

Maybe I’m over concerned, but the durability of our pitching staff comes to mind with Lowe being at the backside of his career…Hudson starting over after major surgery ….and now Jurgens possibly having a lame shoulder. We basically gave Vazquez away for a song and a dance, when he should have been the opening day pitcher.

Tim

February 22nd, 2010
8:47 pm

if anyone else was managing this team the kid would have a legit shot at playing everyday. But with Bobby first time he has an o-fer Bobby will ship him down to the minors saying we don’t want to rush him. Then we get to look forward to Milky Caberra or Diaz or Schaffer or some other clown

dgd

February 22nd, 2010
8:53 pm

Er, Tim have you watched how Bobby manages? How he kept trotting Jordan Schafer out there last year day after day as his average plunged toward and then below the Mendoza line? How he trotted Francouer out there every day until Frank Wren mercifully shipped him off. How in previous years he did the same thing with Ryan Langerhans and Andruw Jones? Whatever his faults, the one thing Bobby has NEVER done is ship a player out after a bad day (or 60 bad days)…

BLH

February 22nd, 2010
9:34 pm

I agree with dgd. Didn’t Kelly Johnson start out 0-31 or 1-31 when he first came up?

scottbravesfan

February 22nd, 2010
10:20 pm

Tim,

Are you insane? Bobby Cox the guy who wouldn’t take Jeff Francouer out of the line up? The guy who wouldn’t take Ryan Langerhans or Jordan Schafer out of the lineup? If the Braves say that Heyward is the every day guy, he is the every day guy.

Romedawg,

Jeff Francouer was never the prospect that Jason Heyward is. The only other position player that the Braves have produced that has this much upside is Andruw Jones. Even Chipper didn’t put up the numbers that Heyward did in the minors, although he was hyped as well. And the thing that is in Heyward’s favor vs. Francouer? The fact that if Jason Heyward gets into a slump he can still get on base because the guy knows what a strike zone is. Jeff Francouer has no clue as to what a strike zone is and he didn’t know what it was in the minors either. Francouer got hyped because he was a Gwinnett county football hero and all of the 12 year old girls thought he was cool. If the Braves were smart they would have used their marketing dollars and promoted Brian McCann instead of Francouer.

Atticus

February 23rd, 2010
8:22 am

I really like this team, I still think Ynuel will continue to get better, Mac is a stud and I love Prado. But the concern for injuries seems to be too much between Glaus and Chipper and Wagner and Saito at the back of the rotation. He really should’ve tried to keep either Gonzo or Soriano, that is just too much age at the back end.

RomeDawg

February 23rd, 2010
8:25 am

Scott,

With all due respect, to say Francouer was not the prospect Heyward is, is wrong. He was also considered one of the top 5 minor league talents in all of baseball as well as being on the cover of Sports Illustrated with the the title “The Natural”. I do agree about Heyward’s knowledge of the strike zone but I think you will see Frenchy rebound now that he has the pressure taken off of him after being out of Atlanta. Francouer is a heckuva athelete.

Fischerking04

February 23rd, 2010
8:46 am

Rome Dawg you are mistaken. I have to side with Scott here. Frenchy was a big time prospect but never as big as Heyward. He was on the cover of SI AFTER coming up and producing big time numbers. Then his mental make-up didn’t allow him to continue to flourish. He couldn’t handle the pressure of being tagged the next face of the franchise. After going to the Met’s he did much better because the NYM fans didn’t expect too much of him.

Heyward, by all accounts is a mental mile ahead of Frenchy. Not to mention that he is just a physical specimen he has the mental toughness that a player needs to endure the pressures of being the next Braves leader.

Fischerking04

February 23rd, 2010
8:48 am

“If Heyward produces immediately, graduating Hanson and him in back to back years is really something. Fun time to be a Braves fan.”—And Roodge Owns

Very true. And don’t forget that next year we will most likely be introducing Freddie Freeman at 1st. Good time to be a Braves fan indeed.

Fillin' up @ Juniors

February 23rd, 2010
9:04 am

First or Last place I’ll be in the stands yelling, “I want Diaz”. Love that guy.

don

February 23rd, 2010
9:29 am

the Braves have some more outstanding prospects. Let’s hope management uses a little more discretion in making trades. No more emptying the cupboard for rental players. surely, the lesson has been learned

patriots75

February 23rd, 2010
9:43 am

Rome Dawg, the difference between Jeff and Jason is more than hype, i watched them bothup close, Jeff was a hacker at the plate with poor strike zone ability,where as Jason has a better grasp of the strike zone and has a much better contact swing, he hits to all fields,has better speed and more upside than any player to come thru in years, lets just hope he can stay healthy.

GRADUATE THE FARM

February 23rd, 2010
9:48 am

i want to see what a line up would look like with Cody Johnson’s power in it would look like he could instantly be a clean up hitter to protect whoever just thinking but ya heyward seems like he can take the pressure and who knows maybe he can teach jordan a few mental things and we can see an outfield of McClouth Schafer Heyward out of spring with our tru lead off man of the future

Greg

February 23rd, 2010
9:49 am

Francouer didn’t struggle because of the pressure, he struggled because he has no command of the strike zone. MLB pitchers are smart, and they get great advanced scouting information. Once the word got out that Francouer would swing at anything, he got a steady diet of high fastballs and low and away sliders. Heyward is reknowned for him plate discipline. He’ll be ten times the player Francouer is.

David

February 23rd, 2010
9:54 am

I’m very dissapointed in Hank Aarons comments at spring training. One of his first comments after walking around the clubhouse was how dissapointed he is that theres only 2 black players on the Braves. Way to motivate all the young white players Hank. That’s like Larry Bird complaining during NBA training camp how dissaponited he is that theres very few white players on the Pacers and the NBA. I think we know Bird would get hammered but Hank Aaron gets a free pass. I think we all know why the Atlanta Journal won’t even touch this. It seems Hammering Hank can’t get through an interviews without bringing up race. He’s done this for years and is still considerend this great ambassador for baseball. Give me a break! Just more of the same old double standards when it comes to race in America.

tp

February 23rd, 2010
9:55 am

If I were Glenn Hubbard, I’d stay a good distance from Heyward. You never know what a guy like that will reach for when he’s hungry! Jeez, he’s huge!

Maybe one day we can sign Ryan Howard and officially have the ‘Twin Towers’ on the roster.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
10:02 am

This will probably be Chipper’s last year as well!

Falkor

February 23rd, 2010
10:02 am

Francouer’s hype was in large part due to him being a local product. Heyward is obviously “local” too, but not from a well known East Cobb Highschool like Francouer was. Francouer had a reputation in Atlanta since he was 14 playing travel baseball. Too bad other than his partial rookie year all he ended up being was hype. I look forward to watching our pitchers strike him out on sliders 3 feet off the plate rather than him doing it for us. He’s a good guy, and I wish him well but good riddance at the same time.

raleighbravesfan

February 23rd, 2010
10:05 am

Atticus – You sound as if Gonzo and Soriano were dependable – which they were not. Every time they came in was an “adventure” filled with walks, wild pitches, and hit batsmen. They also both had a history of injury problems, including the mysterious (fantom even) arm problems that plagued Soriano, to the exasperation of Braves management. This is why they were not kept. I like our closers, and predict that they will be more dependable than G&S.

Don – I actually agree with you on this. I think we will have a good year this year, and believe the Wren haters will soon be eating thier words as the talent in the system moves up. He has aquired talent, not traded it away, and I think his approach has been the right one.

stew

February 23rd, 2010
10:32 am

Bat Heyward third. Batting him seventh or eighth is retarded. Don’t worry about his confidence.

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
10:37 am

David,
Facts are facts. It’s not our fault that America has the double standard. It actually does more harm than good if you ask me. Me being a black man I actually find it laughable because this double standard is only there because people want to feel like when they accuse a white man of racism they are helping rid the country of racism but that’s not true at all. I’m sorry you feel like you do, but unless you’ve been through what Aaron went through then you would never understand. If Larry Bird complained about not enough whites it would be funny because there was a time when the NBA bascially meant No Blacks Allowed so if Bird made the statement it would be funny. Aaron makes the statement because while ATL may be diverse they haven’t had no more than maybe 3 or 4 black guys or a roster in the last few seasons.

Kid me not

February 23rd, 2010
10:39 am

It’s always a great time to be a Braves fan, some times it’s just greater than others! But always a Braves fan! Go Braves….Win it all!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
10:40 am

1. MCCLOUTH
2. ESCOBAR
3. HEYWARD
4. GLAUS
5. MCCANN
6. CHIPPER
7. PRADO
8. DIAZ/MELKY

chem

February 23rd, 2010
10:41 am

I think DOB has a crush on Heyward.

Panther08

February 23rd, 2010
10:43 am

Does anyone know if Heyward is a threat to steal bases?

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
10:46 am

David- “Larry Bird complaining during NBA training camp how dissaponited he is that theres very few white players on the Pacers and the NBA”

Larrr Bird wasnt threatened daily as he played for the celtics. It is a completely different circumstance. Hank has a pass to be able to want more blacks in the game. He is a black man who went thru alot (second only to Jackie Robison in baseball terms) to be able to play and he wishes that more young black men would continue to follow in his footsteps. He never makes negative or racist comments towards whites, latinos or asians, so quit calling him a racist.

Oh and by the way, I am a white man who grew up in the burbs of ATL.

chem

February 23rd, 2010
10:47 am

not at 245 lbs

ITP Brave

February 23rd, 2010
10:47 am

There’s no chance of Heyward starting with the big club – none. Just like Hanson last season, the Braves will say that Heyward needs a little more time in the minors, and he’ll come up in June, coincidentally the same time that allows the Braves to push back his arbitration-eligible season for another year. It’s ridiculous, but it’s a money decision, and the Braves have shown that they must save money when they can.

I hope the Braves prove me wrong, but the evidence from last season is just too clear. When they held back on Hanson even though he was good enough to be the No.3 guy in April (which, arguably, cost the Braves the wildcard), they showed that they will not hesitate to hurt the team’s season to save a few bucks down the line.

Vic

February 23rd, 2010
10:47 am

Hank is right though about the mosaic that is MLB. The lack if african american (AA) players is a concern to many Hank just calls it out when he sees it.

MLB needs to do more to get AA kids interested in baseball. They have done a little re: refurbishing ball parks and the like but more needs to be done.

It’s not a race issue its about losing the interest and involvement of kids who happen to be african american’s – and the key word there is American. Part of the American population is not factoring into a sport they helped develop a long time ago.

For Hank to know how hard it was to over coming the segration of the negro leagues and how those men wanted to be treated equally and play in MLB – finally achieve that – and now all these years later see such a low percentage of AA players. It must be disheartening for him.

PS – We all get that Heyward is a large guy. Hopefully after this blog we don’t have to hear it anymore. It is starting to get creepy at one level and crossing into Jimmy the Greek territory if you get the reference.

Heyward is a bright and physically gifted guy – we get it. Let’s focus on his baseball skills not his dimensions.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
10:50 am

Wes-

That looks like the 2011 line-up. Only add Schafer in CF and at leadoff, just move everyone else down one spot!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
10:51 am

ITP BRAVE, I DISAGREE. HEYWARD WILL BE A STARTER ON THE BIG LEAGUE TEAM COME OPENING DAY BECAUSE HE IS A FREAK! THE GUY IS READY NOW AND EVERYONE IN THE ORGANIZATION KNOWS IT. JUST LISTEN TO THE PLAYERS. THEY SEEM TO TELL YOU WHO WILL BE THERE AND WHO WON’T.

Kid me not

February 23rd, 2010
10:53 am

Who cares whether they are black, white, red, yellow, green, purple? Can they play baseball at the highest level…Be a team and some thing of which a community can be proud. Bemoaning a lack of blacks or whites or any color simply shows racism still exists and is practiced and perpetuated by blacks.

It’s reallly great to see the NAACP has elected new and younger leadership. Perhaps, it’s a mark of progress in moving on from the past.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
10:54 am

Heyward isnt real fast, but scouts say his a “smart” base runner and he did steal 15 bases last year. I think that would have led the Braves!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
10:54 am

NC BRAVES FAN, SCHAFER WILL BE TRADED BY SEASONS END. IT IS NICE TO HAVE MY GOOD FRIEND BILLY WAGNER AT THE CLOSER POSITION. ANOTHER VA BOY!

Jesse Stone

February 23rd, 2010
10:54 am

Heyward has never seen a major league pitch and you guys want him hitting 3rd?

wes

February 23rd, 2010
10:56 am

KID ME NOT, I AGREE TOTALLY WITH YOU. WHO CARES WHAT COLOR YOU ARE AS LONG AS YOU CAN PLAY THE GAME! SOME OF YOU ARE SAYING AARON HAS THE RIGHT BECAUSE OF WHAT HE WENT THROUGH, BUT THE INDIANS WENT THROUGH A LOT TO AND I DON’T SEE THEM QUESTIONING WHY THERE ARE NOT MANY NATIVE AMERICANS PLAYING!

Vic

February 23rd, 2010
10:57 am

That is why I said mosaic at the start. He may have an eye for a particular demographic but the more involved we get kids of all ethnicities the more baseball with thrive.

I think again he has an issue with AA because of his history in the game and of the the game. AA have history with the game that most other demos do not.

I agree in the end let’s focus on the kids and make baseball interesting and fun for them.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
10:57 am

Why are you screaming at everyone WES?

Jesse Stone

February 23rd, 2010
10:59 am

I worked an RBI tournament in Jupiter this summer. To say that MLB is not doing their part in promoting the game to minorities is simply not true.

BuckheadBrave

February 23rd, 2010
10:59 am

There is a HUGE difference between Francouer and Heyward. I would take a Francouer rookie type year out of Heyward to carry this team into the playoffs. The difference comes in when he will experience the inevitable drop off in years 2 and 3. Heyward actually has his fundamentals down when it comes to swinging a bat and will actually take coaching. Nearly everyone on this team came out after the trade to the Mets and said Francouer at times straight up refused to make adjustments, being a true professional athlete comes from the ability to take critiques and turn it into part of your game, Francouer seriously lacked that ability.

Heyward and Schaffer are a breath of fresh air after Frenchy. Schaffer didn’t cry and complain when he was sent down he said i’m going to go get my at bats MAKE ADJUSTMENTS and get back here, Francouer complained for 3 days until they brought him back up having learned nothing.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:00 am

JESSE STONE, YES BAT HIM 3RD BECAUSE HE IS MAJOR LEAGUE READY. THE EXPERIENCE PART WILL COME WITH PT.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:01 am

nc braves fan, sorry I didn’t realize I had caps on.

scott

February 23rd, 2010
11:01 am

Is this new SS prospect we are looking to sign on the fast track? I hope so, I would like to see Esco be able to slide over to 3rd and bulk up more and be more of a long ball threat increasing his RBI potential.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:04 am

I think Heyward should hit 7th, behind Yunel and in front of MattyD. You dont want him in the 3/4 spot as a rook and dont want him 8th because he will just get pitched around. His style points to a middle of the line up hitter but lets let him get accustomed to it first.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:06 am

ncbraves fan, i still think bat him 3rd. he is young and poised to make a name for himself. he is not intimidated at all. so lets see how the kid does.

BuckheadBrave

February 23rd, 2010
11:06 am

Oh, and all you people still whining at Vasquez, i’m glad you are not GM. If you look at historical trends, which most people obviously do not because if they had looked at historical economic trends we wouldn’t be in this mess and there wouldn’t be a giant hole in the middle of Buckhead, but i digress. If you look at historical trends Javy played out of his mind last season heads and shoulders above his ability, Lowe had a career worst in a lot of categories. When it comes down to it there were very solid reasons to trade each but Lowe’s reasons were centered only around money, which the Braves perferred to do but could not. History tells us though that Lowe will have a much better year than Vazquez, the odds are much greater that Lowe had an off year and won;t do that back to back than they are that Javier Vazquez suddenly turned into Nolan Ryan. The trade wasn’t for nothing you got outfield depth with a player who despite popular oppinion here in Atlanta was a major role player on the WORLD CHAMPIONS. He has played on a bigger stage and been solid than any one else on this team, save Chipper. Not to mention you get a pitching prospect that has the potential to turn into twice the pitcher Vasquez was last year. Complain all you want but the trade makes sense.

Mike S

February 23rd, 2010
11:07 am

David, Hank’s comments were dead on. He was not making a statement about the Braves organization, his statement was about the fact that very few you Blacks are playing baseball and it is being reflected in the makeup of major league rosters now a days.

Hank was sad because instead of young blacks wanted to be the next jackie Robinson, Willie Mays or Hank Aaron — they want to be the Next Kobe or LeBron or Carmelo, etc etc etc.

Hankw as 100% dead on in what he said and how he feels.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:07 am

Edward Salcedo is the SS name. He is only 20 (maybe!!) but he is apparently 6-3 195lbs so he might be the 3b prospect we need once he matures a little.

Mike S

February 23rd, 2010
11:08 am

Ugh you = young.

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
11:08 am

Kid me not
I couldn’t agree with you more except maybe the last statement. It shouldn’t matter as long as you can play. The problem is this organization brings in a lot of players from various backgrounds but there are a lot of blacks that don’t want to play baseball especially in Atl because they know that they will lost in the farm system.

I just hope the new leadership for the NAACP doesn’t think racism has died down, it has only taken a new form it’s called politics and political correctness.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:09 am

Well said MikeS

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:10 am

Mike S, what about the native americans? Maybe they want to be the next Hank Aaron.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:13 am

terrell, what is the NAACP going to do? promote baseball? If these kids are any good then they will not be lost in a farm system. just look at heyward

Pat

February 23rd, 2010
11:14 am

The Braves faithful is due for a breakout from a home grown prospect.

This kid could very well be the answer…

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
11:15 am

BuckheadBrave,
We agree on Vazquez probably not repeating what he did last year, but we disagree of Lowe not repeating what he did last year. I think he’s a waste of money and ATL overpaid for him, and no matter what you say I would rather had taken the risk of keeping Javier based on what I saw last year than what Lowe did last season, but I understand why the move was made. If anything I wouldn’t had resigned Hudson since we weren’t just going to release Lowe.

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
11:17 am

Wes,
I was commenting on a statement made by Kid Me Not @ 10:53.

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
11:19 am

Wes,
Considering the aren’t too many Native Americans that play sports in high school at all, that may be why there aren’t any in MLB

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:20 am

Jacoby Ellsbury is native american. The only one in MLB.

benchwarmer

February 23rd, 2010
11:21 am

Bravos look good to me on paper. There is enough in each aspect of the team to cover a slump in another. This is the definition of potential championship. Eastern division champs anyone and then!!!!!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:23 am

Terrell, you just made my point. Aaron should try to get more native americans playing baseball as well.

scott

February 23rd, 2010
11:24 am

NCbravesFAN… I wasn’t aware Salcedo was that big. Maybe he is the 3B prospect we need.

CF Schafer
LF McLouth
SS Escobar
RF Heyward
C McCann
1B Freeman
3B Salcedo
2B Prado
P Hanson

I can live with this lineup in a few years.
McLouth

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:24 am

The Yankees will be tough to beat again this year.

scott

February 23rd, 2010
11:26 am

not sure why McLouth snuck in there again. That little pesky fella’

BuckheadBrave

February 23rd, 2010
11:26 am

Terrell,
The Hudson signing was a purely business move. The Braves know they have an attendance problem and they have to find players that will have crossover appeal to the 24/7/365 College Football crowd, and Hudson fits that bill. I’m a huge SEC fan, but once April roles around i’m all Baseball, unfortunately many people in Georgia aren’t that way. Hudson is a local guy, a southerner, and an Auburn man and the casual fans in the far flung suburbs will come out to support him over Vazquez, it was all economics where that is concerned.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:26 am

Wes- Thank you Captain Obvious!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:28 am

ncbravesfan, no problem!

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:29 am

I would like to say Billy will get around atleast 30-35 saves this season.

David

February 23rd, 2010
11:31 am

Even if all the players were black, Hank Aaron and all the Jesse Jackson types would complain that theres not enough black coaches. Once the coaches are black it will be not enough black general managers, then not enough black owners. They have done this in every sport.

Get over it already. The average white guy can care less about color. It seems more blacks make an issue over race , not whites.

I just don’t see the same outrage in basketball or football where few whites play professionally.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:33 am

BuckheadBrave- I think that logic is flawed. If that was the case then why didnt we keep Vaz for the Latino ATL fans?

It was purely money. 3years 28 mil of pretty solid production from Hudson or 1 more year of who knows what from Vaz and then he wants a big raise or leaves with ZERO players in return.

F-105 Thunderchief

February 23rd, 2010
11:34 am

If Heyward could post Bob Horner-type rookie season numbers – while not breaking anything – I would be one very happy Braves fan.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:35 am

Wes- I would love for Wags to get 40 and break the All-Time Saves for a lefty record!

WonderDawg

February 23rd, 2010
11:37 am

RomeDawg, yeah, being hyped by SI is one thing, but OTHER TEAMS’ scouts are raving at Heyward’s plate discipline, patience, and strike zone awareness. Frenchy was never called disciplined and patient. Heyward also has no pressures regarding money, as his ivey-league educated parents both are big earners.

BuckheadBrave, I’m with you about the Yankees trade and you didn’t mention the 3rd player we got in the deal, Mike Dunn. He’s a hard throwing lefty who is certain to make the opening day bullpen.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:37 am

ncbravesfan, if he doesn’t this year then he will next year if he stays healthy. although, the braves is now the only team he wants to play for so we will see what happens. he is a freak! in college the guy only through his fastball around 85. then after the season he came back to school throwing straight heat!

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
11:43 am

Wes, I will never forget him getting beaned in the head with a come backer a long time ago in Houston. It takes guts to get back on the mound throwing heat after an shot like that.

Brian Asselstine

February 23rd, 2010
11:45 am

Will DOB be blogging more about Heywards hot bod?? Maybe a shower report. I want to hear about the water glistening off his rock solid pecs. His bulging triceps all lathered up with Dove Soap. The way his biceps pop up as he reaches for the Head and Shoulders. The way his calve muscles tense up as he washes his bum…

Oh jeez…I need a cold shower…

OMG Heyward shirtless!! | Atlanta Metblogs

February 23rd, 2010
11:48 am

[...] was reading the local fish wrapping this morning when I came across an odd article about the Braves’ Jason Heyward. Apparently Heyward has put on some weight from last year, which is cause for uncomfortable [...]

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:49 am

ncbravesfan, the guy is as tough as they come. i’m not saying that because he is a good friend. But the guy broke his right arm when we were little and started throwing with his left hand so he could play backyard ball with us. When he is right handed. Unreal!

Terrell

February 23rd, 2010
11:51 am

wes,

Why should he? That’s like me telling you to look for a job for my wife. It’s not your responsibility buy mines. As NCbravesFAN corrected me earlier, let Jacoby Ellsbury be the spokesperson.

David,
you’re right the average white person doesn’t care and for what reason? I don’t know. All I know is while you may work hard at what you do minorities as a whole have to work twice as hard to get the same recogniction, so unless you understand and know the story don’t try to summeraize the whole book based on only one chapter.

There isn’t an outrage in football and basketball maybe because the majority of the owners and the GMs are white they select the players.

BigTimeTECHFan

February 23rd, 2010
11:56 am

If he makes it he will play every day, how will the Brave outfield lineup:
RF Heyward
CF Schafer / McLouth platoon
LF Diaz

Melky will be utility play – does that sound correct.

Will need 100 RBI out of somebody in the outfield, with chippers 90 and Glaus’s 80+, Heyward is our only option,

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:58 am

Terrell, why should he? Are you kidding me? Why should he just stop at blacks, when there are other ethnic grougs out there that need as much help if not more? And you do know it starts with kids parents. If they don’t support their kids playing baseball and try to help them succeed at it then it will remain the same. Last I looked, Aaron is a Hall OF Famer who should be trying to help the game grow as much as he can.

wes

February 23rd, 2010
11:59 am

McClouth will not be a platoon player as long as he continues hitting 20 home runs.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
12:01 pm

Techfan- I dont see Mclouth platooning with anyone. Diaz is the platoon candidate.

scott

February 23rd, 2010
12:07 pm

McLouth won’t be platooning. He may move to LF at some point but he is too valuable with what we have.

NCbravesFAN

February 23rd, 2010
12:10 pm

McLouth in left Schafer in center and Heyward in right has great potential for good defense plus power and speed for the next few years!

bravesfan

February 23rd, 2010
12:11 pm

don’t we hear about prospects being the next “natural” every year. Last year it was Schafer. Heyward may win the job in spring but give him a few months and he’ll be back down in minors. The bottomline is it takes several years for these prospects to develop into every day major leaguers and Heyward will be no different. His day will come but we should not expect it this year. Major league pitchers figure out quickly how to get these youngsters out and it takes time for hitters to learn to adjust

The Official Skip Caray T-Shirt

February 23rd, 2010
12:12 pm

Hello Again Everybody!

Be one of the first to get The Official Skip Caray T-Shirt!

http://www.skipshirt.com

BuckheadBrave

February 23rd, 2010
12:15 pm

Heyward can go through every typical Rookie struggle there is, high strike outs, lack of solid contact, trouble with quality at bats, he would still have to try to be the hole in the lineup that Francoeur was last April and May.

Add your comment