Chipper no longer talking about retirement

MILWAUKEE – Those wondering what’s going through Chipper Jones‘ head these days vis-à-vis the retirement possibility he mentioned last fall, well, you can stop wondering for the time being.

Unlike during last season's struggles, Chipper says he isn't thinking retirement these days. (Curtis Compton/AJC photo)

Unlike during last season's struggles, Chipper says he isn't thinking retirement these days. (Curtis Compton/AJC photo)

He said he’s not thinking about walking away after the 2010 season.

“I’m good,” Jones said, referring to his current frame of mind. “I feel like I’m doing my job. There hasn’t been a point where I got in bed and couldn’t sleep because I’m worried about what’s going on. Those days come when you go 0-for-20 without barreling a ball.”

Thirty-two games into the Braves’ season, the 38-year-old third baseman is hitting .230 with two homers and seven RBIs in his 27 games, numbers that project to lower totals than his .264-18-71 from a career-worst 2009 season.

There are differences, however.  Jones is tied with Chase Utley for the National League walks lead with 25, and has 12 strikeouts in 87 at-bats. Last season, he finished with 89 strikeouts and 101 walks.

He’s 6-for-19 with two doubles, seven walks and one strikeout in his past six games, and left Monday night’s game after aggravating a left-groin injury on an infield single in the sixth inning.

Manager Bobby Cox said after last night’s game that he didn’t know if he could play today, but Chipper told me later that the injury wasn’t any worse than before the game and said, “I’ll be all right.” And yes, he’s in the lineup tonight (see below).

The walks, he said, are a good indicator of how he feels at the plate.

“When I’m drawing walks you know I’m seeing the ball good,” Jones said. “Everybody points to the RBI, but when there’s not a lot of opportunities you can’t help that.”

He’s walked in nine of 27 plate appearances with runners in scoring position, and gone 5-for-18 (.278) with a homer and five strikeouts in the others.

As for those who think he’s a shell of the hitter he once was, Jones said, “You can point to the home runs, but that’s probably the only argument that people really have. Because I’m not hitting the ball out of the ballpark. People talk about the average, but the on-base percentage is still there.”

As for the average, he said, “I certainly feel like through the first month and a half, I’m swinging the bat a lot better than the average indicates. Is it .300, .310, .320 like it used to be? Probably not. But I certainly feel like I could be hitting .270, .280 right now [if some well-hit balls weren't caught]. And you’re talking about a very high OBP if that’s the case.”

His on-base percentage is .402, five points below his career OBP and 14 points higher than his 2009 OBP.

Jones is slugging a mere .368, far below his .539 career mark.

His slugging percentage has been in steady decline, from .596 and .604 in 2006 and 2007, to .574 in 2006 when he won his only batting title with a .364 average, to .430 in 2009.

The switch-hitter is hitting .219 in 32 at-bats against left-handers this season, but both his homers have come against lefties, and he’s slugging more than 100 points higher against lefties (.438) than against righties (.327).

It’s an inverse of his OBP, which is .343 vs. lefties and .432 vs. righties.

“I mean, I’m doing my job as far as getting on base, but … I don’t know. I don’t know what the answer is to the home runs,” he said. “Right-handed, early I had it going. But left-handed I haven’t been able to get that happy medium.

“I spent so long working on the mechanics of my left-handed swing, just trying to get to the point where I was making contact consistently. Now that I’m doing that, balls aren’t carrying out of the ballpark.”

That frustration pales compared to last season, when he spent nearly the last four months in an overall offensive malaise that made him seriously think about retiring if it continued another season.

He insists he was serious about the possibility, despite a three-year, $42 million extension he signed in March 2009 that runs from this season through 2012.

But again, that’s not how he’s thinking now. When he first mentioned that retirement possibility to me before a September game in Houston, Jones was in the midst of a 95-game stretch in which he hit .229 with 10 homers, a .356 OBP, .364 slugging and almost as many errors (13) as doubles (14).

He had 61 strikeouts in 327 at-bats during that stretch, which began seemingly from out of nowhere with an 0-for-20, five-game skid June 10 through June 14. In 48 games through June 9, Jones had hit .335 with eight homers, 31 RBIs and a .452 OBP and .565 slugging percentage. Vintage Hoss numbers, at age 37.

Then the bottom fell out, and a few months later he still had no answers. Thus the retirement thoughts that grew stronger as the 2009 season wore on.

“I was pretty beat up last year,” he said, and meant mentally more than physically. “Last year I was hitting .340 before I went 0-for-21. I literally did not hit a ball on the barrel for three weeks. That is discouraging. That’s when you go home and give the dog a kick as you talk by, or you snap at your wife. Right now, I can’t complain with the way I’m swinging the bat.

“I called my dad the other day and said, over my 17-year career, how many times have I hit .220 and not been ready to hang myself?” Jones said. “He said, ‘Never. You’ve never been satisfied with hitting like that.’

“I said, but I’m not really disappointed with the way I’m swinging the bat now. I’m pretty happy with it.”

Just not with the end results so far – not his, and especially not the team’s.

“With the exception of [Jason] Heyward, nobody’s been immune to it,” Jones said of the slumps and what so many Braves say are bad breaks that have contributed to them. “At some point you’ve got to feel like things are going to even out, and some of the balls are going to fall in.”

A few hours after he said that, the Braves had their first six-run inning since Opening Day during Monday night’s 8-2 series-opening win against the Brewers.

♣ Hanson’s rapid progress: Milwaukee hitters saw last night just how far young Braves ace Tommy Hanson has come in under 11 months.

Remember it was the Brewers whom he faced in his major league debut on June 7, 2009, when Hanson was charged with six hits, seven runs (six earned) and three homers in six innings.

Hanson has quickly developed into a bonafide ace.

Hanson has quickly developed into a bonafide ace.

He pitched eight scoreless innings of four-hit ball with one walk and eight strikeouts against the Brewers on Monday night, and one of those hits was a bloop single by Prince Fielder that fell between three converging Braves.

In the 27 starts that have followed his debut, Hanson is 14-6 with a 2.51 ERA, .226 opponents’ average and 157 strikeouts with 58 walks in 164-2/3 innings.

And he’s only getting better.

Check out these stats: In his past 18 starts, since Aug. 5, Hanson is 9-4 with a 2.46 ERA, .218 opponents’ average and 111 strikeouts with 33 walks in 109-2/3 innings. That’s true ace-caliber stuff, folks. And he’s 24.

“Going eight strong innings the way he did and shutting out this team in this ballpark is hard to do,” Cox said after last night’s game against the highest-scoring team in the NL. “He had all of his pitches working, fastball, curve, slider, and even mixed in change-ups toward the end. He had it all going.”

Hanson has worked eight innings twice in his past three starts, and in those two games he allowed eight hits, two runs and one walk with 15 strikeouts.

“It feels good to go deep into the game,” Hanson said. “That’s what I want to do. I threw all my pitches where I wanted to [Monday]. I threw a lot of change-ups late that felt really good, and my slider and curveball, my fastball on both sides of the plate. I felt good with all my pitches and my gameplan out there.”

He threw 109 pitches and said he didn’t feel tired. And he worked out of the one jam he got into, after hitting Ryan Braun in the elbow with a pitch and then seeing the Fielder single drop with one out. He got a strikeout and flyout to end that threat.

“I knew I had to make pitches. That stuff happens. I was trying to go in on Braun and it got away from me a little bit. And the pop-up fell in there. There’s nothing you can do about that stuff. I just tried to bear down and make pitches, and it worked out.

“I felt really good today. To be honest with you I didn’t feel tired one bit, so I feel like I could even have gone back out there [in the ninth]. But Bobby’s the manager. I just do what he says.”

True ace, this kid. And as long as that delivery doesn’t cause any problems, I can’t see anything preventing him from becoming a perennial Cy Young Award contender. He’s that good, and that smart to know how to use his talent.

Hanson ranks seventh among NL starters with 9.63 strikeouts per nine innings, between Josh Johnson (9.84) and Chris Carpenter (9.4). Also, Hanson’s .183 opponents’ average against righty hitters ranks ninth among NL starters.

Can’t help but notice the difference between how the Braves’ best two starters are going about being effective this season. Tim Hudson has the third-fewest strikeouts per nine innings (3.76) among NL starters, ahead of only John Lannan and Livan Hernandez.

Hudson pitches tonight's game as Braves go for series win. (Curtis Compton/AJC photo)

Hudson pitches tonight's game as Braves go for series win. (Curtis Compton/AJC photo)

Hudson is 2-1 with a 2.82 ERA entering tonight’s start against the Brewers.

♣ Series probably rides on tonight’s game: If the Braves want to get their second road-series win of the season, they had better win tonight.

I say this because tomorrow, they’ll pitch Derek Lowe (6.16 ERA) against Yovani Gallardo.

Gallardo is 4-0 with a 1.17 ERA in his past four starts, with 35 strikeouts and 12 walks in 23 innings. For his career against the Braves, he’s 2-0 with a microscopic 0.81 ERA and .125 opponents’ average in three starts.

The Braves scored two runs against him in 2007, but last year Gallardo blanked them on six hits over 15-1/3 innings in two starts, with 12 strikeouts and eight walks.

♣ Etc.

Jordan Schafer is progressing in his rehab from wrist surgery and moves from Class A Rome to Double-A Mississippi tonight for a game against Chattanooga. It took a while, but Schafer’s finally making real progress. Braves haven’t said how soon he could be ready for majors, but with their lack of outfield production, I won’t be surprised if we see him by June or July…. The ESPN E:60 segment on Jason Heyward will be featured in tonight’s 7 p.m. episode of the newsmagazine-style program. Buster Olney did the reporting…. Jesse Chavez gave up a two-run homer in the ninth inning Monday to spoil the shutout bid. Between them, Chavez and Jo-Jo Reyes have allowed 18 earned runs in 17-2/3 inn. All other Braves relievers have allowed 17 earned runs in 79-2/3 inn (2.15 ERA). Chavez and Reyes have allowed two homers apiece, while other Braves relievers have allowed just three homers in 79-2/3 innings.

♣ Just got Braves lineup, and it’s quite a different look, including  Martin Prado at leadoff and Heyward hitting second. I like it.

  1. Prado, 2B
  2. Heyward RF
  3. Chipper 3B
  4. McCann C
  5. Glaus 1B
  6. Hinske LF
  7. Infante SS
  8. McLouth CF
  9. Hudson RH

♣ My work here is done. Let’s close with a classic cut from Milwaukee’s own Violent Femmes.

Violent Femmes

“KISS OFF” by the Violent Femmes

I need someone

a person to talk to

someone who’d care to love

could it be you

could it be you-ew

the situation gets rough,

and I start to panic

it’s not enough

it’s just a habit

and, kid, you’re sick

darling this is it

well you can all just kiss off into to the air

behind my back

I can see that stare

they’ll hurt me bad but i won’t mind

they’ll hurt me bad they do it all the time

yea yea

yea they do it all the time

yea yea

they do it all the time

yea yea

they do it all the time

do it all the time

they do it all the time

do it all the time

they do it all the time

do it all the time

I hope you know that this will go down on your permenent record

oh yea

well don’t get so distressed

did I happen to mention that i’m impressed

I take one one one cause you left me and

two two two for my family and

three three three for my heartache and

four four four for my headaches and

five five five for my lonely and

six six six for my sorrow and

seven seven for no tomorrow and

eight eight I forget what eight was for and

nine nine nine for the lost gods

ten ten ten ten for everything everything everything

well you can all just kiss off into to the air

behind my back

I can see that stare

they’ll hurt me bad but i won’t mind

they’ll hurt me bad they do it all the time

yea yea

yea they do it all the time

yea yea

yea they do it all the time

do it all the time

do it all the time

do it all the time

do it all the time

do it all the time

time time time time

timetimetimetimetimetimetimetime

do it all the time

2,408 comments Add your comment

timthebrave

May 11th, 2010
3:40 pm

ugaman

May 11th, 2010
3:40 pm

Chipper feels like he’s doing his job? LOL

Rob (from SC)

May 11th, 2010
3:42 pm

We all knew Chipper wouldn’t walk away from all that money

abwright

May 11th, 2010
3:42 pm

No-one on the Braves not named Jason Heyward is hitting for power, despite yesterday’s game.

Glaus is starting to come around. Season AVG, OBP, SLG versus Career are .262/.355/.364 versus .255/.359/.494.

In other words, in a very small sample, Glaus’s numbers are consistent with his career numbers, except for slugging. And, Glaus’s slugging comes mostly from HRs, not from doubles. His Slugging Percentage will fluctuate dramatically. When he hits a HR, it will jump, then it will decline til the next HR.

Chipper is down both on average and slugging percentage. However, OBP is consistent with career numbers. A good sign that he is not getting anything to hit. When he does hit, it’s not for power (yet). Chipper’s slugging is more balanced between doubles and HRs. His doubles look consistent with career numbers, it’s just his HRs are down.

McCann’s average and slugging are both down, but his OBP is higher than his career average.

Escobar is down on all three categories.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that it’s all Yunel’s fault!

Actually, why 3-4-5 hitters on the Braves aren’t hitting home runs is a mystery. Prolly, a statistical anomaly due to small sample size on a factor (HRs) which will occur rarely in a season anyway.

To pick on Chipper, in his career, he has hit 1 HR every 18.5 ABs. To start this season, he has hit 1 HR every 43.5 ABs. If he hits a HR in his next AB, that number drops to 1 HR every 29.5 ABs.

Last year, Chipper’s ABs between HRs is 27.11. In 2008, it is 19.95. In 2007, it is 17.68. Clearly a consistent drop off, but not the cliff that many would believe.

And, since everyone not named Heyward has experienced a similar power decline to start the season, it is reasonable to expect that opponents’ pitching has had something to do with Chipper’s numbers. Injuries may also play a role.

If Chipper has a good stretch of 20 ABs, his SLG will move back pretty close to his norms. Same with McCann, Glaus, and Escobar.

BuckheadBrave

May 11th, 2010
3:44 pm

Its your #3 hitters job to hit .230?

Coach (2011 or Bust)

May 11th, 2010
3:44 pm

Well, Chipper should retire whether or not he wants to. The dude is done, as in finished. Broken down, can’t stay healthy or productive. In fact, in my not so humble opinion..he has no business being in any starting line up. Bench player, maybe. Starter? NO.

13 million per season and not worth half of it. Larry Wayne Jr., do the honorable thing and walk away.

monty

May 11th, 2010
3:45 pm

Talk about being delusional.

FEAR

May 11th, 2010
3:45 pm

loving the lineup

zmerk13

May 11th, 2010
3:45 pm

sportsmandh-

From last blog, Church is making 1.5 mil this year.

BuckheadBrave

May 11th, 2010
3:46 pm

I didn’t understand letting Church go, they didn’t even want to give him a chance to be value in return for Francoeur.

Daybed Wagmoe

May 11th, 2010
3:46 pm

Looks like the infield singles have got Chipper thinking about staying!

ncscoots

May 11th, 2010
3:46 pm

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that it’s all Yunel’s fault!

Shoot, the only reason he’s not being ragged on more is that he’s on the DL and not playing, LOL. Therefore, only HALF of everything is his fault. :-)

FEAR

May 11th, 2010
3:47 pm

Chipper is such a jerk. sorry. had to say it.

timthebrave

May 11th, 2010
3:47 pm

Coach, he will hit about .275 with 15-20 hr. better than anyone we have in the minors. Is he earning 13 million? no…but it aint my money and I’ll take him over brooks conrad as my starter

Steve from OH

May 11th, 2010
3:47 pm

Ah, the Violent Femmes. Good tune, DOB. By the way, did you get my question about the Primanti Bros. at PNC park? I was wondering if the food quality there is as good as it is at the regular shop. I’m heading to a game there in a week or whatever and eating one of those sandwiches is on my to do list…

monty

May 11th, 2010
3:49 pm

I’m not saying he can’t improve, find his stroke, etc..I hope for the team he does, but if he can see his swings on replay and feel good about his total lack of punch,(what’s he slugging?)then he is in la-la land. He can hit weak fly balls to right right now, about all he can do. Even his groundballs are 10 hoppers to short or second.

Ted Williams Frozen Head

May 11th, 2010
3:50 pm

Glad to hear the Chipper is going to be around long enough to collect his gold watch….all be it an expensive gold watch for a guy who is probably gonna hit like a number 7 hitter in the #3 hole for the rest of his career.

Chris from the Rock

May 11th, 2010
3:51 pm

Good news about Schafer moving up to AA. He’ll be in ATL by mid-June.

Change Turner Field to Aaron Stadium

May 11th, 2010
3:51 pm

DOB, I guess with Chipper playing tonight, there is no truth to the rumor that Heyward is in the 3-hole?

Chuck James was Solid until the 6th!!!

May 11th, 2010
3:51 pm

I am convinced McLouth’s eyes are all twisted and he doesn’t want to wear the Robin glasses to improve his game. McCann’s issue is weirdly suspicious, this could be career threatning. He did have 2 surgeries this past year, right? McLouth needs a new exam to be taken ASAP.

ugaman

Haha, that is a good laugh.

Pesky

May 11th, 2010
3:52 pm

Chipper needs to be hitting second and then he would be right in bragging about that on base percentage, bc in that spot it is still all about getting on-base. He goes to the 2 spot and then no one can really complain.

Flip-flop him and Martin or bat Martin leadoff.

Ted M

May 11th, 2010
3:52 pm

Rob (from SC) – I second that

MiaBchBravesFan

May 11th, 2010
3:53 pm

timthebrave: at this point in time, Hinske is a better option than Chipper.

First, the chronic oblique.

Then, the balky hip.

Now, a groin.

Dude, you waiting for him to play third in a wheelchair? Someone had it right: Glaus at third, and Hinske at first. ‘Cept I had Hinske in LF. Oh well, wait ’til Schafer is healthy, put him in CF and you have this (provided all are healthy):

C – Ross/McCann
1B – Hinske
2B – Prado
3B – Glaus/Chipper
SS – Escobar
LF – Infante
CF – Schafer
RF – Heyward

The bench of ineptitude!

McLouth
Cabrera
Diaz
Jones
Conrad

(WOW! that is a horrid bench at this time.)

TnBrian

May 11th, 2010
3:53 pm

I want to see Heyward out in RBI spots. I know he’s not getting a lot of those anywhere he hits in the order right now … but 2nd? Not crazy about that, but we’ll see. Chipper needs to pick it up, ASAP.

ChrisfromSacramento, CA

May 11th, 2010
3:53 pm

Chipper is my favorite player and always will be, but he needs to make major changes. I am not talking about his health.

Chipper needs to dump the toe tap at the plate. Simplify things. His hands are not as fast as they were. He needs to drop a few ounces on his bat. He misses alot of fast balls. Alot of those are fouled straight back. I remember him driving the ball over the fence the other way left handed. Even Joe Simpson brings up Chipper’s power the other way that he had. We all remember his HOMER in the 2000 all-star game at the Ted. Now he rolls over. He needs to make things simple and realize he is not as quick as he was.

I know Chipper is a HOF and Im on a blog. But, he needs to make things simple he has to many moving parts at 38.

Ted M

May 11th, 2010
3:53 pm

I thought 2011 was the last year. Crap

abwright

May 11th, 2010
3:54 pm

ncscoots, as soon as Yunel gets back from the DL, I’ll stop ragging on him. I’m having fun blaming someone who is not currently playing for all of the Braves woes. Beats complaining about TP and BC for the offense (although TP does need some scrutiny).

Churchy

May 11th, 2010
3:54 pm

Hopefully Chipper will walk away after 2011 if he doesn’t after this year. We could use the money for the 2012 season.

Chipper has a 2013 option in his contract.
I’m not sure how it works. I believe it is a club option but is guaranteed with: 123 games in 2012, or average of 127 games in 2011-12

Snotboogie

May 11th, 2010
3:55 pm

The line-up posted by Ease (thru’ Gondee) is unreal, if true. Heyward just skipped the 4th and 3rd spot and went straight to 2nd. I guess Chipper got the table-setting he sorely needed to start hitting the ball harder.How long before they walk Heyward so that they can pitch to Chipper.Ideally Chipper and Heyward should be flipped, especially now that Glaus has started hitting.

Supes

May 11th, 2010
3:55 pm

If he has another “career” worst year, and he doesn’t retire…it’s all about the money. He should just come out and say it….instead of feeding fans this BS about “I’m feeling good”…well the results aren’t there. I’m a big fan of Chipper’s…but he simply hasn’t been the same for almost a year now. (Since the All star break last year). Whatever the reason…he just isn’t driving the ball with authority anymore.

If he TRULY cared about the team, and the organization…if this continues…he WOULD retire at the end of the season and be done with it.

We don’t need a 13 million dollar part time player at 3B…we already have an expensive 5th starter in KK, and a very expensive and none productive “ace” :look: in Derek Lowe. We can’t afford it.

MFin04

May 11th, 2010
3:55 pm

It makes more sense to have Jason Heyward hitting behind the guys who get on base, because he is the only one hitting for power and driving in runs.

If you want to hit Martin at leadoff, hit Chipper second, and Jason 3rd. If you want to have Infante leadoff, hit Martin 2nd, Chipper 3rd, Heyward 4th.

If you don’t want Heyward at the 4 spot, hit him 5th behind McCann.

Ted M

May 11th, 2010
3:56 pm

DOB – any stats on Schafer from A ball?

David O'Brien

May 11th, 2010
3:57 pm

Braves haven’t posted lineup yet. Should be coming shortly.

sportsmandh

May 11th, 2010
3:58 pm

guys look, think about it, even if he is thinking about hanging it up, he’s not going to come out and say it now in May. His talk is probably a smoke screen. I don’t care what he says, you can’t tell me everytime he’s hobbled around, fell down on a swing, ‘tweaked’ the groin, botched a routine play at 3rd, missed pitches that he thinks he should crushed, etc. that retirement has not crossed his mind again.

monty

May 11th, 2010
3:58 pm

The hardest thing to know for a player is when to walk away. Smoltzie and Glavine still thought they could pitch. MAybe Chipper can turn things around from here on out,(hope so). But you mean to tell me if he’s hitting .235,.400.,.370,.770,at year’s end that he wants to play again next year and hit 3rd? WOW!! WAy to think about the team Chip.

ncscoots

May 11th, 2010
3:59 pm

abwright, roger that at 3:54, LOL.

Kevin

May 11th, 2010
3:59 pm

I’m actually relieved to hear Chipper talking about how he’s ok with his approach and swing. Players can’t control results, only approach. If he was frustrated with his approach and having these results he’d be talking about retiring.

Contrast his comments with those of Hanson’s. Hanson is saying that stuff happens with the hit batter and flair base hit. He had to control what he could. That he got out of the jam by pitching well is incidental to his approach (i.e., it’s a result – once the ball leaves his hand it’s out of his control).

Same thing with Chipper. If his approach stunk it would be one thing, but sounds like his head’s screwed on straight this year. Hopefully the results will start to follow.

TnBrian

May 11th, 2010
3:59 pm

Chipper Jones can do whatever the hell he wants to do, and he damn well knows it. Bobby is a loyal man anyways, but to Chipper — his loyalty should be damn near illegal.

Don’t ya’ll see this?

Daybed Wagmoe

May 11th, 2010
3:59 pm

Braves haven’t posted lineup yet. Should be coming shortly.

So that one posted on talkingchop may not be the one for tonight? Hmmm…let’s hope it is!

SC Smith

May 11th, 2010
4:00 pm

If Chipper cant play tonite please Bobby use this lineup:ss-Omar 2b-Prado 3b-Hinske 1b-Glaus
rf-J-Hey c-McCann lf-Diaz cf-Nate

ryan c

May 11th, 2010
4:00 pm

schafer: 6/22: 2 doubles 4 walks 2 stolen bases and 1 caught stealing. .273 avg .385 obp .748 ops

MiaBchBravesFan

May 11th, 2010
4:00 pm

Supes: yeah, the KK signing was a mistake. That said, I’d be happy with just unloading Lowe’s and Chipper’s contracts.

Ah, to dream. . .

Chop Chop

May 11th, 2010
4:01 pm

I hope Chipper collects every penny of his deal. Same goes for Lowe. Why?

Wren’s a genius.

ryan c

May 11th, 2010
4:01 pm

i dont know how they get their info, but talkingchop doesnt post crap. its legit.

David O'Brien

May 11th, 2010
4:02 pm

Yes, Heyward’s hitting second, and our Prado suggestion…

Braves LINEUP:
1. Prado 2B, 2. Heyward 1BRF, 3. Chipper 3B; 4. McCann C; 5. Glaus 1B, 6. Hinske LF, 7. Infante SS, 8. McLouth CF, 9. Hudson RH

Pete

May 11th, 2010
4:02 pm

abwright: “Chipper is down both on average and slugging percentage. However, OBP is consistent with career numbers.”
Very true. The problem is hes hitting #3, and his SLG is way below his OBP (.368 vs. .402) which is very unusual, especially for a #3 hitter. In fact, Id wager hes the only #3 hitter in the league with a SLG lower than his OBP. His career stats are SLG .539 vs. OBP at .406, so you can see how dramatic of a drop in power he has shown so far this year, and to a lesser extent, last year as well (.430 vs. .388).

Change Turner Field to Aaron Stadium

May 11th, 2010
4:02 pm

Buck and Kincaid just confirmed that Heyward’s in the 2-hole and Prado leading off – wow!!

zmerk13

May 11th, 2010
4:03 pm

So with Lowe tomorrow, do we give the free pass to Braun, Fielder and McGehee and hope Edmonds grounds into a triple play? Or do we just let them all hit solo homers?

Steve from OH

May 11th, 2010
4:03 pm

Not a bad lineup at all…

ncscoots

May 11th, 2010
4:03 pm

DOB – any stats on Schafer from A ball?

The guy only had about 20 ABs there and those numbers don’t mean much, whatever they are. Just a place to see game speed again and swing the bat against live pitching. I don’t think you can really put much stock in any numbers he puts up for the first month.

Unless he hits about .350, of course. That, naturally, would be legit. :-)

Change Turner Field to Aaron Stadium

May 11th, 2010
4:03 pm

Sorry DOB, you beat them to it – I love this lineup!!

MFin04

May 11th, 2010
4:04 pm

Ted M – MILB.com and under player search type, Schafer.

Artist Formely Known As BravesfaninWis

May 11th, 2010
4:04 pm

If Chipper thinks he is doing his job, then he should no doubt retire. The guy is not the same, period. He is getting older as far as professional sports goes, he has been dealing with injury after injury the past 3 seasons, and his range at 3rd is dwindling. Its time for him to call it a career. He will be a HOF’er no doubt, so there is nothing else for him to prove at this point. All he is doing now is handcuffing the Braves from spending that money elsewhere. Time to move on Chipper. You will always be remembered in Braves Country.

yeah c'mon

May 11th, 2010
4:04 pm

we need Melky, McLouth, and Diaz to start hitting a little. Also, McCann should get a new eye doctor.

wheelz007

May 11th, 2010
4:04 pm

10

May 11th, 2010
4:04 pm

Know how you can tell this blog is filled with people who probably haven’t attended a Braves game in years? The Chipper hate. The proclamations that he just needs to go, as if you speak for every Braves fan. Go to a game sometime, and you’ll be shocked that the one who gets the biggest roar by far from the crowd when he comes to the plate is Chipper Jones. No player even comes close to Chipper’s nightly ovations every single time he comes to the plate.

You can’t wait to get rid of Chipper? Fine, speak for yourself. Or make yourself heard at the Ted. But we never hear from you at the Ted when Chipper comes up, or when Chipper makes an out, or Chipper makes an error? Why is that? Where are you? Why can’t we hear you? Are you the lone voice being drowned out by the masses? Or, more likely, are you not even in attendance? And why is that? Can’t afford it? Mommy won’t take you? Not really that big of a Braves fan? Can only be heard on daddy’s computer down in mommy’s basement?

JT Grace

May 11th, 2010
4:05 pm

I love that lineup. I’m glad to see Hinske getting some well earned playing time in LF.

Drew

May 11th, 2010
4:05 pm

Schafer promoted to AA ball! That’s a sign.

Artist Formely Known As BravesfaninWis

May 11th, 2010
4:05 pm

Holy crap, does Bobby Cox read this forum? He actually has Prado leading off, and Heyward batting second? Holy wow, I didn’t think I would see that lineup this year.

TnBrian

May 11th, 2010
4:06 pm

DOB, can you shed some light on why Bobby keeps McCann in the cleanup spot? He might start the platoon thing against RHP/LHP with he and Glaus like lat night, but I don’t get it. Mac is struggling against both lefties and righties while Glaus is hitting everybody. Plain silly and stubborn by Cox, imo.

Artist Formely Known As BravesfaninWis

May 11th, 2010
4:06 pm

Not to mention that Hinske is starting at no Cabrera or Diaz in the lineup. Damn, I feel like its my birthday or something.

Thrillhouse44

May 11th, 2010
4:06 pm

If Chipper thinks he is doing his job, then he should no doubt retire. Artist Formely Known As BravesfaninWis

Here’s Chipper’s quote. “I mean, I’m doing my job as far as getting on base…”

dickfer

May 11th, 2010
4:07 pm

our best power hitter and rbi hitting second

sweet jeebus

MiaBchBravesFan

May 11th, 2010
4:07 pm

With the exception of McLouth, an excellent lineup! A gutsier lineup would be Heyward hitting cleanup, with Infante in the two-hole and “Singles” Glaus fifth. McCann is just not hitting squat!

zmerk13

May 11th, 2010
4:07 pm

10-

To be fair, a lot of us don’t live near Atlanta, and can’t go to all the Braves games.

With that being said, I would still cheer for Chipper.

meh

May 11th, 2010
4:08 pm

DOB- you have two 1B in your lineup.

monty

May 11th, 2010
4:08 pm

CHrisfrom Sacr

Part of Chipper’s problems is he is flying open so fast with his body hitting LH that he has spent his enegry by the time the ball hits his bat.He’s overcompensating for his lack of speed with his hands through the impact zone. A lighter bat in theory should allow him to let the ball travel closer to the plate before he feels the need to stride and therefore being more in sync.

Dylan

May 11th, 2010
4:08 pm

Great Lineup

StingerSplash

May 11th, 2010
4:08 pm

Thanks, DOB. Thanks a stinkin’ lot. Bringing back the Femmes “Kiss Off” like that. Makes me want to be 19 with a cold oat soda in my hand acting like a stinkin’ fool at 13th grade (where I matriculated for college), instead of on the backside of 40 with a bad knee, aching shoulder, balky hip and gimpy ankle.
Thanks a lot, pal. (8 … 8 … I forget what 8 is for ….). Damn your eyes!

Snotboogie

May 11th, 2010
4:09 pm

So many good things about that lineup.
1) No Melky
2) No Melky
3) No Melky
.
.
.
.
.
.

.
.
99) No Melky

Angus

May 11th, 2010
4:09 pm

I’ve never thought Chipper was one to BS about how he was feeling at the plate. If he says he’s feeling good, then great – hopefully it’ll mean a little more production from the 3-hole.

As much as I understand the logic, I would have loved to have seen Tommy go the distance last night. CG shutouts are rare and quite a feather in a pitcher’s cap.

Great lineup!

For the music lovers, check out this Shel Silverstein tribute coming out soon:
http://twistableturnable.sugarhillrecords.com/
(featuring, MMJ, Andrew Bird, Bobby Bare Jr. & Sr., Kris Kristofferson, John Prine, Pixies members et al)

cs95

May 11th, 2010
4:10 pm

i think heyward batting second is for three reasons: 1) if he keeps hitting the guys at the bottom don’t he is just going to get walked A TON and therefore he doesn’t really get those RBI chances anyway. He’s less likely to get pitched around ahead of chipper, glaus and mccann. 2) let’s not forget that this guy has speed too. maybe batting second we can actually score a run with a guy on first and a double is hit. also, if he becomes a base stealing threat than maybe the 3-4-5 guys get better pitches 3) could be a way to ease him into the 3rd hole: a. see if he can handle it up at the top and b. if chipper minds

Playoffs!?!?

May 11th, 2010
4:10 pm

Yeah, I like the idea of Chipper hitting second, where his high OBP would be a boost. I hate it when people post their Braves lineups–but I can’t help myself:

Prado
Chipper–because of his high OBP
McCann-best hitter on the team when his eyes are right
Glaus
Heyward-don’t want to put the pressure of batting cleanup; he’ll be there soon enough
Escobar-when he comes back
7-8; whatever, it doesn’t matter

Ted M

May 11th, 2010
4:10 pm

ryan c – thanks

David O'Brien

May 11th, 2010
4:10 pm

By the way, can some tell Milwaukee that it’s May? It’s in the freakin’ 40s here.

Change Turner Field to Aaron Stadium

May 11th, 2010
4:10 pm

I just hope Cox sticks with this lineup for a while. And when Yunel makes it back he can slide right into where Infante is hitting in that 7th spot.

StingerSplash

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

And could Schafer be any worse than Cabrera at this point? OK, technically, there is a possibility, but it’s slimmer than one of the Olsen twins.

zmerk13

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

DOB-

I am sure Bobby only made this lineup switch because you “held him accountable” the last few days right? Giving him hell in the clubhouse like a true “New York Columnist?” haha

sportsmandh

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

10,

Some of us posting about Chipper aren’t ‘hating’ on him, or chomping at the bit to see him go. We are posting observations. If you can’t see that he can barely move around then you are blind. I hope his numbers come up. I hope he does better. But he is looking very bad physically. If he is hurt, they need to put him on the DL. Don’t send him out there if he can’t move. It should be pretty simple.

And by the way I do go to some games. Not all the time b/c I live out of town, but I do go time to time. And I watch all the time on TV.

A. Dylan Thomas

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

I say we surgically remove ted williams eyes and put them on mccann.

NaHe5

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

Good news about Schafer…but I have to laugh when so many people always mention ‘bringing so-and-so up….’ Well, YOU HAVE TO HAVE ROOM FOR HIM FOLKS!! Who you going to move in order to have room for Schafer? Diaz?…..don’t think so. Cabrera?….as much as I dislike him and have no confidence in him, he is a switch-hitting OF and adds versatility, for sure!….McLouth?….not likely!
Now, 3 weeks ago I would’ve given up ANY of our outfielders for a healthy Schafer. Right now, we should just let him play and get stronger and back to his normal game….then let it all play out.
Hey, what about this?….release Lowe and put Schafer on the mound! Sure wouldn’t be any worse! And, you wouldn’t need a pinch-hitter after 4 innings when you have to pull him out after being down 6!

Pete

May 11th, 2010
4:11 pm

10: “You can’t wait to get rid of Chipper? Fine, speak for yourself.”
I believe thats what were doing. Whom are you speaking for?

ncscoots

May 11th, 2010
4:12 pm

Mac is struggling against both lefties and righties while Glaus is hitting everybody.

Trying to get Heap some better pitches to hit, maybe.

The gods help us if this lineup does anything tonight, LOL. Folks here will start thinking that Wayne’s idea of managing-by-blog has some legs. :-)

Pesky

May 11th, 2010
4:12 pm

lol…I guess the only way Chipper is moving from that 3 spot is at gunpoint, but at least it should be interesting, and hopefully our leadoff woes will disappear.
,
Chipper will retire if and when he thinks his 300 career batting avg is in jeopardy, imo.

10

May 11th, 2010
4:13 pm

Pete, attend a game. No one can hear you at the Ted. Ask mommy to buy you a ticket

SC Smith

May 11th, 2010
4:14 pm

Best lineup Bobby put on the field all year. Don’t know how it’ll come out but at least only 1 hitter under .200, think I’ll grab a few beer’s grill some steaks and watch this one. Keep Hinske playing somewhere. Hell he looks like a ballplayer.

onebravosfan

May 11th, 2010
4:14 pm

Wow, that’s an amazing lineup change, J-Hey hitting second, Prado leading off, Hinske playing LF. I really never thought I would see BC move J-Hey that far up until at least the all star break…Wow.

chip carey's eyebrows

May 11th, 2010
4:14 pm

Good lineup tonight. I have read a lot of stuff about Chipper on here lately and him being selfish/past his prime etc. Maybe that’s all true, but there is no one waiting in the wings to take his place. This team is much better served riding it out with Chipper, taking the high on-base percentage, and hoping he finds his power stroke. Bottom line is that if he doesn’t the team is not going anywhere anyway and no one they put there (Brooks Conrad?) is going to do better right now. When Escobar comes back I can see an argument for Infante, but I’d rather see him get time in left. So my point is to quit bitching about the guy. He is a legend, hall of famer, and we all have been lucky to see him play for our team. I hope like hell he turns it around, and if he doesn’t he’ll know when to leave. But until there is a guy like Heyward or Freeman waiting to take over at third, what the heck is the rush to shove him out the door? (I will say if things don’t change power wise in the next few weeks it might be time to adjust the batting order, he’d be a great 2 hitter at the stage in his career with the contact swing and on-base numbers).

Nate from NCState

May 11th, 2010
4:16 pm

Wow… what a curve ball from Bobby Cox. I don’t know how it will work out with Heyward in the 2 hole.. but he’s really changed things up! I’m pumped!

Not sure what to conclude from Chipper’s comments. Either he is OK right now with being mediocre or he’s comfortable and confident that the homeruns and RBI will come… We shall see.

I’m glad Chipper is not talking retirement. I’d like to have him until the man can’t pick up a bat anymore. We’ll see how things shake out.

Daslied

May 11th, 2010
4:16 pm

Chipper is 2nd among MLB 3rd basemen in OBP (.402 – .001 behind David Wright).

He leads all 3rd basemen in walks. He is 29th in strikeouts. 15th in doubles. 8th in stolen bases. 1st in intentional walks. 18th in double plays.

Oh yeah, and he’s ahead of Pablo Sandoval in OPS.

Still a good player.

MiaBchBravesFan

May 11th, 2010
4:16 pm

10 -

You sound like a bitter middle-ager with a strained oblique, chronic hip problem, and groin issues above and beyond a strain.

Why don’t YOU retire!

RHR

May 11th, 2010
4:17 pm

Good News! I <3 10!

MFin04

May 11th, 2010
4:17 pm

Chipper and McCann as posted before are not hitting well with RISP. They also have terrible power numbers, terrible HR and RBI totals. But their asset currently is there OBP. Therefore it makes sense to have Heyward hit behind them. Not in front of them. Especially not with those two not hitting. Once they do start hitting it makes sense to have Heyward in front of them to score him.

Pete

May 11th, 2010
4:17 pm

10, I attend plenty of games, thanks anyway. Meanwhile, attending games is not a prerequisite for posting here, even if you think it is, for whatever strange reason. And Ive never heard you either, by the way.

Marc in FL

May 11th, 2010
4:18 pm

“That’s when you go home and give the dog a kick as you talk by, or you snap at your wife.”

Jesus Chipper, just go to the bar and have a cold one. No need for the domestic violence over a baseball game, lol

CraZyTRaDeMaN

May 11th, 2010
4:18 pm

BuckheadBrave…… I didn’t understand letting Church go, they didn’t even want to give him a chance to be value in return for Francoeur.

What did you want 4 backup outfielders. Obviously the rest of major league baseball agrees with you. There was a heck of a bidding war for him after last year.

Snotboogie

May 11th, 2010
4:18 pm

Must be global warming.Pete

HahaHa, that’s so funny. My stomach hurts. Please… Stop….

Daslied

May 11th, 2010
4:19 pm

Why does <3 look like balls to me?

ncscoots

May 11th, 2010
4:19 pm

Oh yeah, and he’s ahead of Pablo Sandoval in OPS.

No ragging on The Panda. Must not. No no.

I love that guy, LOL, how can you not?

Soph

May 11th, 2010
4:19 pm

10 @ 4:04 –

:lol:

Tell ‘em.

Add your comment