Jones willing to give up his No. 3 spot to Heyward

For all the Braves fans and arm-chair managers who think Jason Heyward should be hitting third in the Braves lineup, they’ll get no argument from the Braves current No. 3 hitter.

Chipper Jones has hit third for almost his entire 15-year career, but he said given his lack of punch lately, he would understand if manager Bobby Cox wants to move rookie sensation Jason Heyward into his spot and move Jones up in the order to second.

“You have to adjust your lineup with how everybody is swinging at that particular time and right now I’m more of an on-base percentage guy than I am a power run-producer guy,” Jones said. “Jason is the guy who’s hitting the homers and drawing walks and hitting for average and driving in runs.”

Jones’ power numbers have been in decline since last season when he came in under 20 homers for the first time in his career. He entered Saturday’s game hitting only .228 with a .370 slugging percentage. He had two home runs and eight RBIs.

He had drawn a team-high 25 walks to give him a .393 on-base percentage, which he understands might make him a more suitable No. 2 hitter.

Heyward has as many homers as Jones has RBIs (eight) and leads the Braves in RBIs (28). Through Friday, he was tied with the Dodgers’ Andre Ethier for the majors’ lead in batting average with runners in scoring position at .500 (12-for-24).

“Ultimately I always describe that a No. 3 hitter is a guy who can do it all,” Jones said. “A guy who can hit for average and power, draw walks, run, score runs, drive in runs. At least right now Jason is really the only guy that can do all of those things. With the way I’m swinging the bat, right now I’m more of a table-setter.”

Since spring training, Jones has said he planned to groom Heyward to take over his No. 3 spot. If that time is now, Jones said he’s OK with it. Jones has given up his third spot before to hit cleanup behind Gary Sheffield and J.D. Drew. He has let manager Bobby Cox know he’s willing to give it up now.

“Anything Bobby wants to do with the lineup, I’ve always made it known I’ll do whatever’s best for the team, and he knows that,” Jones said. “I have no qualms hitting second, I have no qualms hitting fourth, fifth, sixth, whatever.”

When asked about it on Saturday, Cox said he liked the lineup the way he has it now. Friday night he moved Martin Prado into the leadoff spot, followed by Heyward and Jones, and he said he wanted to try it that way for a while.

“I just like it the way it is,” Cox said. “Chipper – he just missed hitting a homer last night. What’s the difference, second or third, anyway, to be honest with you.”

Heyward hit third for two games in Milwaukee when Jones was out with a groin injury. Heyward went 3-for-7 with six runs scored and two stolen bases in those two games.

Cox believes Heyward will still have plenty of chances with runners on base in the No. 2 spot. Heyward came to the plate Friday night with runners on base twice.

“He came up all night long with something going on,” Cox said. “And his on-base percentage is high, so why not hit him in front of these guys right now. Chipper’s got a high on-base percentage always. That’s pretty good for (Brian) McCann and (Troy) Glaus and (Eric) Hinske right now too.”

118 comments Add your comment

RHR

May 15th, 2010
7:08 pm

Suck it, haters.

Thanks, Carroll. :)

Carroll Rogers

May 15th, 2010
7:11 pm

Chipper told me today he’s willing to give up his No. 3 spot to Heyward….Asked Bobby about it and he said he likes the lineup the way it is now. But check it out….(you two Steve, so you don’t get in trouble at dinner with the skipper)

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-braves-blog/2010/05/15/jones-willing-to-give-up-his-no-3-spot-to-heyward/

Carroll Rogers

May 15th, 2010
7:12 pm

And no it’s not raining here. It’s bright and sunny. I hear it’s pouring in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs

Carroll Rogers

May 15th, 2010
7:17 pm

well it’s a tale of two sensations here for Hanson in the first inning….two Ks on nasty pitches and a no-doubter home run to Justin Upton on a 2-0 fastball.

MattyRoss

May 15th, 2010
7:21 pm

Pretty telling that Bobby mentions Hinske in that trio of run-producing regulars, I’m thinkin’.

RHR

May 15th, 2010
7:23 pm

Carroll, wrong page?

MattyRoss

May 15th, 2010
7:25 pm

RHR — shhh!!! Private audience with the beat writer we’ve got here. It’s like the wedding in the Godfather. :)

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:27 pm

Cox “Second or third what’s the difference”. Exactly the reason the Braves are a mess (or were a mess). The leadoff and # 2 hitter are table setters to get on for the 3rd,4th,and 5th place hitters to drive them in. Basic baseball or softball,or tee ball 101. I’m ready for that new manager 5 years and counting…

Carroll Rogers

May 15th, 2010
7:29 pm

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:31 pm

Bobby “Who cares if Nate Mclouth hits leadoff (with a 4 for 50) or hits 8th or gets replaced ultimately by Schafer” ? Oh, it matters.

shawn

May 15th, 2010
7:32 pm

Bobby cox starts to making me mad with his stupid comments. He said: “Chipper was close to hit a homer last night” Is he watching the same game as we all do? Chipper was striked out badly with runners on. He is not the same guy. Bobby, you need some reality check.

Roto Rooter

May 15th, 2010
7:32 pm

Bobby Cakes should realize that Hewyard in the 3 hole and Chipper in the 2nd would give Chipper (who has a good OBP) better pitches to hit. Hewyard may have a high OBP but he also is your best run producer (Slugging Pct). Is Hewyard more valuable to the team driving in runs or being on base?

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:33 pm

D’Backs up 1-0 bottom 2nd.

Poorbrave

May 15th, 2010
7:33 pm

Agree RHR..Haters and the ones telling how stubborn and self centered Chipper was just don’t know the man.
Thanks Carroll for clearing it up.

Carroll Rogers

May 15th, 2010
7:34 pm

a rope by McCann

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:35 pm

McCann leadoff single to open bottom 2nd.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:36 pm

Glaus walks.

Bill

May 15th, 2010
7:37 pm

You know not to question the HF Mgr Bobby Cox…he walks on H20.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:37 pm

Infante was 4 for 4 and got benched for Escoshowboatbar.

steve brown

May 15th, 2010
7:38 pm

He can bat third but he can’t have Chipper’s huntin and fishin equipment.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:38 pm

Hinske flys out to CF, 1st & 3rd 1 out.

Bill

May 15th, 2010
7:40 pm

Why not trade Esco for power hitter? (SDP)

Delbert D.

May 15th, 2010
7:43 pm

So Chipper is now giving the OK on the lineup cards?

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:45 pm

Escoshowboatbar fouled off about 5 pitches then walks, bases loaded 1 out.
Bobby said “Come on Yu” Bobby speaks Chinese, one of his many HIDDEN talents…

Tmac

May 15th, 2010
7:46 pm

Nice to see Escobar back in the line up. Clutch hitter with RISP.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:48 pm

McLouth gets into 0-2 hole (as usual) then K’s looking. Damn !

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:49 pm

Hanson grounds out 2B. No runs. Nate, you killing us dude !

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:51 pm

Bases loaded 1 out and you don’t score…

Bye Bye Bobby

May 15th, 2010
7:53 pm

McCl-OUT sux.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:53 pm

Bobby talks to himself too. And sometimes abnswers himself and sometimes doesn’t. “It doesn’t matter either way you know”.

Synder grounds out to Hanson. 1 out.

Tmac

May 15th, 2010
7:54 pm

Can’t wait to see Shafer back in the line up. Give this kid another shot when he’s healthy

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:55 pm

Pitcher Lopez K’s. 2 outs

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:56 pm

M.Diaz went on DL with a “sick bat” B. Clevlen called up.

Groundout. 3 outs. 1-0
Prado,Heyward,Chipper due up.

dufferdawg

May 15th, 2010
7:56 pm

Chipper “I cant hit anymore’ Jones…didn’t go far enough with his “team first” comments…he should actually say, he will become a bench player and let Infante take his spot…it’s just sad to see him fail so miserably now…his swing at times isn’t even professional looking…he is pulling his head around so far he is looking at the dugout when he finishes…it is T-Ball stuff. And we know Cox doesn’t have the guts to pull him….I can’t wait til next year !

Tmac

May 15th, 2010
7:57 pm

Except for one pitch Hansons dealing

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:57 pm

I agree Tmac.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
7:58 pm

Somebody tell the hitters KK ain’t pitching tonight.

TruthSeeker

May 15th, 2010
8:00 pm

Chipper’s gotten a lot of criticism this year, but one thing nobody can say about the guy is that he isn’t a team player. He changed positions for the good of the team, he restructured his contract for the good of the team, and now he’s offering to move out of the spot he’s hit in the order for virtually his entire career for the good of the team.

You guys are so quick to bash him need to take that into account.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:00 pm

Prado K’s looking. 1 out.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:01 pm

Heyward flies out to CF. 2 outs.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:02 pm

Chipper doubles. He weant from a 34 oz. to a 32 oz. bat.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:03 pm

So that means Mclouth needs to go from a 32 oz bat to a 12 oz. bat…

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:03 pm

McCann just missed homerun to LF. 3 outs. 1-0 Arizona

dufferdawg

May 15th, 2010
8:04 pm

robdawg08…why do you feel it necessary to comment on every at bat???

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:06 pm

C.Jackson flies out to CF, McLkouth ran a little bit to get it. Nothing special. 1 out.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:07 pm

Play by play for those not watching.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:08 pm

Upton flies to RF. 2 outs.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:09 pm

LaRoche base hit up midlle.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:10 pm

Wild pitch runner at 2B. 2 outs.

ijudgenot

May 15th, 2010
8:12 pm

Good article. If nothing else chipper has taken the pressure off Cox and now he can make that move without looking like he was dissing the future HOFer. Also like the part about Chipper going to a lighter bat. Now just need to get a replacement for McClouth in center. he is almost an automatic out they can get him out 2 different ways.With his upper cut swing he can’t hit the inside pitch nor can he hit the high pitch which he can’t lay off of.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:15 pm

Reynolds fouled off bunch of pitches then K’s. 3 outs. 1-0 D’Backs.
Hanson kinda wild.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:18 pm

Glaus base hit.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:18 pm

Eddie Matthews ?

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:19 pm

Hinske flied out.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:22 pm

Escobar timing is off. He’s the foul ball king. Tailor made double play to pitcher. 1-0 still.

TROTTINGHOME

May 15th, 2010
8:23 pm

yahoo live game is faster than you rob. double play

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:24 pm

Anemic offense returning.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:24 pm

Ok. I’ll stop. Not appreciated any way.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:25 pm

Enjoy your Yahoo live…

choozer

May 15th, 2010
8:26 pm

Do our starters EVER get to pitch with a lead? (not counting Lowe)

I Hate Liberty Media

May 15th, 2010
8:38 pm

At least we won’t get no-hit tonight.

robdawg08

May 15th, 2010
8:41 pm

See, I stopped play by play and all hell broke loose…

usnavyvolfaninva

May 15th, 2010
8:42 pm

Oh, this is bad, very bad.

tell it like it is

May 15th, 2010
8:43 pm

Nate you’re killing us…

TROTTINGHOME

May 15th, 2010
8:44 pm

IT’S OVER.

RUBBER MATCH TOMORROW

usnavyvolfaninva

May 15th, 2010
8:45 pm

BALLGAME… just kidding.

usnavyvolfaninva

May 15th, 2010
8:46 pm

Good Sac by Hanson!

I Hate Liberty Media

May 15th, 2010
8:48 pm

Tmac

May 15th, 2010
8:49 pm

Just need to get to they’re bullpen

It's that bad!

May 15th, 2010
8:50 pm

Could Bobby Cocks be the most ignorantSOB ever? Possible! Lineup is HORRIBLE! Should look like this:

Escobar – SS
Prado – 2B
Heyward – RF
McCann – C
Glaus – 1B
Chipper – 3B
Hinske – LF
McLouth – CF

Clint

May 15th, 2010
8:57 pm

Hey, the deal is that Chipper lost his passion for the game a couple of years ago. The man has such great talent, as evidenced by his league leading BA two years ago, but he has also lost any passion for the game. What a waste…what a regret this guy’ll have in a few years. I’m not sure he’s an HOFer. I think he’ll look back on his once promising life as such a waste.

Pete*

May 15th, 2010
8:59 pm

“Chipper Jones has hit third for almost his entire 15-year career, but he said given his lack of punch lately, he would understand if manager Bobby Cox wants to move rookie sensation Jason Heyward into his spot and move Jones up in the order to second.”
Im confused…didnt CJ say just 2-3 days ago that he “thinks Im doing my job?”

usnavyvolfaninva

May 15th, 2010
9:06 pm

Man, all that after 2 out, and nothing!

Tmac

May 15th, 2010
9:06 pm

Lighten up Clint. First ballot HOFer. No doubt about it What makes you think he’s lost his passion. He dosen’t have to play this game. If he lost his passion for the game he be the first one to say so. He has to much respect for the game to do otherwise.

I Hate Liberty Media

May 15th, 2010
9:16 pm

No power on this team.

It's that bad!

May 15th, 2010
9:20 pm

Chipper lost his passion for the game when he had those 10 illegitimate children….I think we may have our own version of Tiger Woods?!

jamin.benr

May 15th, 2010
9:23 pm

chips lost a step, think he’d benefit from a slight demotion to the 2 hole

zeeeee Nachos

May 15th, 2010
9:35 pm

How about Chipper give up 3rd base to someone…. ANYONE

It's that bad!

May 15th, 2010
9:44 pm

Agreed! Trade Chipper to the AL….he can DH there. We need a leadoff hitter!

Captain Obvious

May 15th, 2010
9:44 pm

Chipper’s bat isn’t what bothers me. He’ll come around, but there is no excuse for his terrible defense. Maybe he could give LF or 1st base a try? Also why wasn’t McLouth taken out of the game after losing the ball? I happen to remember when Escobar made some terrible plays and he got benched. Whats up with that Cox?!

Bill

May 15th, 2010
9:52 pm

go kelly johnson………..

it’s that bad….you need to prove your statement are lie at 9:20.

Justafan

May 15th, 2010
9:57 pm

Lets see the new call up Clevlen. Boy the bull-pen sucks.

C Fox

May 15th, 2010
10:16 pm

I agree robdawg …huge difference between 2 and 3 hole..geez..bobby should be embarrassed for saying that in public! Although.. thank you Chipper for manning up and stating the facts and being willing to do what’s right for the club. I will never forget what #10 has done for this team..but its a new era.. and that era’s name is …. Heyward. However…would love to see Jones in a managerial role someday

billy shears

May 15th, 2010
10:19 pm

somebody take mclouth to lens crafters. that’s the biggest distance i’ve ever seen someone lose the ball in the lights like that. not even close!

Harpie

May 15th, 2010
10:27 pm

Man ,this team stinks!

Resign or Resign?

May 15th, 2010
10:30 pm

C Fox:

Did I actually read ” …would love to see Jones in a managerial role someday.”? I have never considered Chipper to be managerial material; though he has been a great player.

John

May 15th, 2010
10:57 pm

Chippie needs to give up more that his batting place. He needs to give up his position too. He’s now has limited abilities everywhere. If he had an ounce of pride he would retire. Hall of Hafe my buttocks, everything has some type of Hall of Fame. I am in the marble Hall.

joedub

May 15th, 2010
11:18 pm

Chipper is class act for saying this. It’s a shame you douchebags can’t respect one of the greatest Braves you’ve ever had the privilege of watching. Chipper’s said it, now do it, Bobby.

Truly Angry

May 15th, 2010
11:36 pm

chipper sucks

carlchamblee

May 15th, 2010
11:38 pm

First post says “suck it haters”? Classy

carlchamblee

May 15th, 2010
11:42 pm

Obviously Chipper sees a difference between the 2 and 3 spots. His manager doesn’t.

Robert

May 16th, 2010
12:05 am

“I just like it the way it is,” Cox said. “Chipper – he just missed hitting a homer last night. What’s the difference, second or third, anyway, to be honest with you”

Ignorant. Just plain ignorant

why???

May 16th, 2010
12:15 am

It took three years of Kelly Johnson (Braves edition, not current edition) hitting nothing before Bobby finally let Prado become everyday 2b. Now we see the same thing with Infante as SS. Escobar is an excitable young man who makes plays one inning and breaks your heart the next. The added bonus of his Mendoza-like avg this year makes me wonder why Infante is on the bench. The dude can hit.

Once a Braves fan always a Braves fan

May 16th, 2010
2:03 am

Couple of things I’d like to point out: 1) Chipper has been playing Bb for almost 20 years (because technically, he was drafted in 1990 by the Braves and he made his official Major League debut on 9/23/93) not 15 as stated in the article. 2) Chipper Jones is human; he will make mistakes; he will get hurt; he will have off days; he will screw up and you know what? That’s ok, he’s not perfect and no one should expect him to be, so cut the man some slack already!!!

ATL Shawty

May 16th, 2010
2:31 am

Bobby Cox is obviously a great manager but I think he’s wrong on this one. With Heyward batting 2nd he will normally have McLouth,the pitcher, and Prado hitting b4 him… that’s obviously not ideal. I believe he just wants to remain loyal to CJ.

Keep It On The DL

May 16th, 2010
2:37 am

The torch has been passed.

Prado
Yunel
Heyward
McCann
Glaus
Chipper
Hinske
McClouth

reason

May 16th, 2010
3:38 am

I think Bobby has been hit by to many foul balls, he took a winning chemistry line-up and replaced it an losing one.
He needs to replace McClouth, play Chipper part time the man is not anything close to what he use to be, and trade Escobar, he’s not happy with the Braves, Bobby made sure of that.
Everyone knows Chipper call the shots, and everyone knows Bobby will do what Chipper says, that’s why he’s still play everyday or when he wants. Every time the team is up and playing good baseball, Bobby has a way of reversing the motivation of it. Bobby positive outlook on losing a game is pathic. Is this manager taking advice from Pendleton?

The Grinch

May 16th, 2010
4:07 am

Chipper’s assessment is spot on, as was his idea to go to a lighter bat. I’ve met Bobby, and he isn’t that stupid. He’s just being selfless and bolstering egos. I wish he’d just do that in the media though, and stop doing bizarre things with the lineup while we still have a chance this season. This is the sort of thing one does when the team is 12 games out and cold, not coming off a win streak (that we might still be on).

BravesAreDone

May 16th, 2010
4:52 am

Cox has officially lost it.

FJR

May 16th, 2010
5:57 am

Only on this blog will you read “Mcl-OUT sucks” a day after he hits a game tying 3-run HR and plays some awesome D. This blog may be the most extreme “what have you done for me lately” bunch of fairweather fans I’ve ever seen.

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