A primer before Freddie Freeman’s arrival

Housemates Freeman and Heyward could be Braves middle-of-the-order fixtures for years to come.

Housemates Freeman and Heyward could become Braves middle-order fixtures.

By now most of you probably know that first baseman Freddie Freeman is the Braves’ top position-player prospect (rated No. 20 in Baseball America’s midseason prospect list), and that he can hit for a high average and OBP with plenty of power.

Freddie's smooth stroke should be on display at Turner Field a bit in September, before he takes over 1B in 2011.

Freddie's smooth stroke should be on display at Turner Field a bit in September, before he takes over 1B in 2011.

You probably know he’s had a terrific season at Triple-A Gwinnett — batting .319 with 35 doubles, 18 homers, 87 RBIs, a .379 OBP and a .902 OPS in 123 games — and is going to be one of the Braves’ September callups.

He’s likely to join the big club on Wednesday, and regardless of his role the rest of the season, he’s expected to be the Opening Day first baseman in 2011.

Some of you might also know he’s been the youngest player in the International League most of the season, that he lives in Jason Heyward’s house now, and that the two close friends roomed together as teammates in the minors in past years.

But how many know that Freeman, who doesn’t turn 21 until Sept. 12, is regarded as an exceptional defensive first baseman? In the annual “Best Tools” issue of Baseball America, he was named the best defensive first baseman in the International League.

“It’s great as a pitcher, having a guy like him at first base,” said Triple-A closer closer Craig Kimbrel, who’s had three stints with the major league Braves this season and spent the rest of the year at Gwinnett.

“He’s going to make that play, you know? He does everything well [defensively]. And what’s good is, he works at it. He tries to keep getting better.”

Kimbrel has been teammates with Freeman for parts of the past three seasons in the minors, at Single-A Rome, high-A Myrtle Beach, Double-A Mississippi and Gwinnett. He’s seen Freeman, a 6-foot-5, 225-pound left-handed hitter/right-handed thrower, make adjustments and thrive at every level.

Kimbrel has no doubts about Freeman’s major league future. He believes, as do the Braves, that the guy is going to be big-time player.

“I wouldn’t say right off the bat,” Kimbrel said. “Like this year, it might take him a minute to adjust. But once he adjusts and gets comfortable, I feel like he’s going to take off.”

Freeman struggled mightily in May during his first season in Triple-A, then posted a .923 OPS in June and never looked back. He’s put up steady, sometimes sensational weeks ever since then, and last week had a 5-for-5 game.

He’s patient like his roommate, with whom Freeman talks hitting all the time. They used to have competitions in the minors, to see who could get on base the most, drive in the most runs, etc.

Freeman, a second-round draft pick in 2007 as a California high schooler, hit .316 with 18 homers and an .899 OPS in 130 games in 2008 for Rome in his first full season of minor league ball.

This was Freeman in the Arizona Fall League in 2010; he'll be back in the AFL this fall.

This was Freeman in the Arizona Fall League in 2009; he'll be back in the AFL this fall.

He was slowed by a hand injury for a big part of the 2009 season and saw his numbers dip to eight homers, 58 RBIs and a .771 OPS in 111 games at Myrtle Beach and Mississippi (while hitting .282).

But any questions about Freeman’s power (the Braves said they never had any at all) were answered this year with his big season in Triple-A.

Heyward said he wasn’t the least bit surprised by Freeman’s power numbers at Gwinnett.

“I’ve played with him for I don’t know how many years, three years as a teammate and I’ve seen him play before that,” Heyward said. “He’s always hit home runs.”

Has Heyward been excited to see Freeman’s performance and ascent up the prospect chart?

“I always want to see my friends do well,” said Heyward.

Soon, the roomies will be able to share a ride to the ballpark again.

Prado, Cox also get high marks: The Braves didn’t have a lot of representation in the major league portion of BA’s “best tools” issue, which perhaps underscores the contention of their players that this isn’t a team of stars.

The exceptions were Cox, rated the best manager in the NL;  Derrek Lee, rated the third-best defensive first baseman, and Martin Prado, who went from utility player to All-Star second baseman in 12 months, and is now rated the third-best hitter in the NL behind Albert Pujols and Joey Votto. Prado is also rated the third-best hit-and-run artist and second-best defensive second baseman (he’s played 3B since returning from DL).

Let me repeat: Prado, according to Baseball America’s survey of major league managers, is the third-best overall hitter in the league behind MVP and Triple Crown candidates Pujols and Votto.

This was Prado’s response when I informed him on Sunday.

“Oh, really? Good,” he said. “That’s nice. All the managers vote for that?”

Prado contends that he doesn’t see himself in the same light as the superstars of the game, that he’s just a blue-collar guy who comes to the ballpark, does his job, and cares only about one stat – wins.

But you could tell that being included in the same sentence with one of his heroes, Pujols, made him feel good.

When I told him, Prado was busy rubbing some sort of oily cream on his right pinkie, which is still swollen and ugly where he broke it a month ago, the top part of the finger points a bit to the outside, sort of like one of those photos you see of old NFL lineman, though not as extreme.

He told me in Colorado, after that tomahawk-style homer he hit on a pitch up near his neck, that the finger didn’t hurt much when he hit high pitches, but bit when he hit other pitches.

I asked him Sunday if that were still the case.

“I don’t know,” he said. “Sometimes it feels warm, sometimes it stings. That’s the way it’s going to be until [the offseason].”

BRAVES LINEUP for Monday vs. Mets

1. Infante 2B

2. Heyward RF

3. Prado 3B

4. Lee 1B

5. McCann C

6. Diaz LF

7. Gonzalez SS

8. Cabrera CF

9. Jurrjens RH

The comeback kids: After staging their improbable 7-6 comeback win on Sunday, capped by Brian McCann’s game-ending homer (on a call reversed after umps consulted the TV replay), the Braves are 23-12 in games decided in final at-bat.

They were 19-18 in such games in 2009. (No other team has more than 20 fina at-bat wins this season.)

Atlanta is 29-34 when the opponent scores first, after going 22-49 in those situations a year ago.

The Braves have won six games when trailing after eight innings, one more than they won in the 2009 season.

“I don’t know,” manager Bobby Cox said, when asked about the Braves’ late-innings magic, particularly in home games.

“The bullpen keeps you close in the game, to make those comebacks. That’s one of the reasons,” he said. “And we have a strong bench. You’ve got to remember, [Omar] Infante started on the bench, as well as [Eric] Hinske. They’ve been key players for us.”

Four days after their epic meltdown in Colorado, where they blew a 10-1 lead and lost 12-10, the Braves showed Sunday that their late-innings mojo hasn’t run out, especially at Turner Field.

“That’s the way we’ve been doing all year,” McCann said. “We don’t quit. We just don’t. It shows you what kind of guys we have in this clubhouse.”

Keep in mind, the Braves have the best home record in the majors (46-18), and the National League has home-field advantage in the World Series. Whichever NL team wins the pennant, they can thank McCann for that home-field advantage.

He earned it for the NL representative by delivering his game-winning three-run double in the All-Star Game, which also earned him the game’s MVP award.

August reversal: The Braves are 4-6 with a 5.55 ERA, .266 team batting average, 63 runs and 15 homers in their past 10 games. This after going 12-5 with a 1.93 ERA, .248 BA and 77 R in their first 17 August games.

Meanwhile, the power-laden Phillies are 5-6 with a 2.56 ERA and just a .195 team BA in past 11 games, during which they’ve scored 28 runs. They outscored the Padres 11-4 over the weekend to win three consecutive games in San Diego.

As for that power-laden lineup, the Phillies hit two homers Sunday for their first multi-homer game since Aug. 18. That’s astounding to me, even with the injuries they’ve had.

And then there are the Mets, who arrive tonight for a three-game series with the Bravos at Turner Field.

The Mets are 24-25 with a .234 team batting average and solid 3.56 ERA over their past 59 games, and here’s the stat that I found hard to believe: They have won back-to-backi games just once in that 59-game stretch since June 24.

The Phillies (2.93) and Braves (3.23) have the best ERAs in the NL in August, and the Mets (3.24) are third.

Heyward has accounted for nearly half of the homers by Braves outfielders, who rank second-to-last in the NL in that category.

Heyward has accounted for nearly half of the homers by Braves outfielders, who rank second-to-last in the NL in that category.

Low HRs in OF, high at PH and C: Among NL teams, only Mets outfielders (30) have hit fewer homers than Braves outfielders (33), and only Padres outfielders have hit for a lower average and lower slugging percentage than Braves OFs (.248/.391).

Nearly half of the Braves’ total has come from rookie Jason Heyward, who went a long time without one while his thumb was aching. Heyward has 15 homers, while Matt Diaz is the only other Brave with more than four homers as an outfielder.

Diaz has six homers in 153 at-bats as an outfielder, and hit a very big two-run homer in the ninth inning Sunday as a pinch-hitter.

The Braves are tied with the Reds for the NL lead with eight homers from pinch-hitters, including three from Brooks Conrad, who has 12 of the Braves’ league-leading 37 RBIs from pinch-hitters.

Meanwhile, McCann and David Ross have given the Braves’ league-leading production from the catching position, where Atlanta has a league-highs of .383 OBP and .457 slugging, and its 18 homers trail only Colorado’s 19 from catchers.

♣ OK, gotta get to the ballpark. For those interested, here’s a link to our long-form interview done last night with the knowledgeable fellas at Atlanta Baseball Talk: http://www.atlantabaseballtalk.com/?p=284

If you’re an Americana/rootsy/country-rock fan, check out the soon-to-be-released Justin Townes Earle album Harlem River Blues, right here.

Oh, and I picked up excellent new CDs by the Eels and Chrissie Hynde, the Pretenders’ head lady whose new album Fidelity is with a new band and Welsh singer-songwriter JP Jones. It’s a great album. If you like Chrissie, get it.

Let’s close with this tune that I keep coming back to, the most perfect, melancholy song I’ve heard in some time, “If You Ever Get Famous” by The Duke and The King. Man, after I hear this I find myself singing it in my head all day. Here’s a link to it, which you’ve got to check out if you haven’t heard it.

the-duke-and-the-king-nothing-gold-can-stay

“IF YOU EVER GET FAMOUS” by The Duke and The King

If you ever get famous

Don’t forget about me

I hope it’s everything that you

Thought it would be

If you ever get famous

Don’t forget about her

She was there boy before

Anybody cared who you were

You better remember

If you ever get famous

I say a prayer for your heart

You keep your eyes open wide and

Beware the sharks

Cause they come out in the dark

If you ever get famous

Show your face now and then

Cause all our days are so many

Ways in the wind

And we can’t get them back again

So many days in the week

Let them roll on by

So many days in the week

Roll on, roll on, roll on

So many days in the week

Let them roll on by

If you ever get famous

In your white limosine

It’s a rainy night and your

Headlights hit the water in the streets

And the rain beats down

And keep an eye on the driver

Cause as the highway unwinds,

Boy, the way home fades and can

Be so hard to find

Oh my oh my, oh my

So many days in the week

You keep on running round

So many days in the week

You’ve been running all your life

So many days in the week

In the hope to fnid what you’re looking for

So many days

If you ever get famous

Don’t forget about me

I hope it’s everything that you

Thought it would be

2,109 comments Add your comment

David O'Brien

August 30th, 2010
3:11 pm

BRAVES LINEUP for MONDAY: 1. Infante 2B, 2. Heyward RF, 3. Prado 3B, 4. Lee 1B, 5. McCann C, 6. Diaz LF, 7. Gonzalez SS, 8. Cabrera CF, 9. Jurrjens P

bravofan

August 30th, 2010
3:12 pm

Dave

August 30th, 2010
3:15 pm

DOB – you were supposed to type “1st”, not the lineup

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
3:20 pm

Heyward and Freeman- Hard not to smile thinking about watching that tandem the next 5 years.

heymmered

August 30th, 2010
3:20 pm

Big series before we head down and play the Marlins again. I am always worried playing the Marlins so we need to gain some ground against the Mets.

David O'Brien

August 30th, 2010
3:20 pm

And no, I wouldn’t trade Troy Glaus, not unless the Braves could get something of real value. Because he’s insurance in case Lee’s back acts up, or some other injury crops up. Glaus could be a big bat off the bench or a 1B or perhaps even a 3B if the Braves need him there.

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:20 pm

KJ batting .248 on the road this year. He’s a guy that’s hard not to root for but not a impact player. No brainer with Prado over KJ.

This post along with another that says KJ put up all his stats at a “Hitter Friendly” park are just ludicrous. KJ was a fine player and the kind of player I want representing Atlanta. It was a mistake to let him go and he would have found a place to play or Prado could have moved. They are both good players and as the years stats show – very close to the same stat wise.

.278 BA/.368 OBP/.485 SL/ .853 OPS/ 34 2B/ 4 3B/ 19 HR/ 58 RBI/ 11 SB (KJ)

.316 BA/.360 OBP/.488 SL/ .847 OPS/ 33 2B/ 4 3B/ 15 HR/ 55 RBI/ 4 SB (MP)

517 CH/ 203 PO/ 308 As/ 6 E/ 80 DP/ .988 FP (KJ)

475 CH/ 184 PO/ 285 AS/ 6 E/ 66DP/ .987 FP (MP)

Blog comments are retarded

August 30th, 2010
3:22 pm

FIRST because no one else said it and its required that it be said. Just fulfilling my duty to the DOB MIB Blog. Carry on.

Brave11385

August 30th, 2010
3:22 pm

How great would it have been to have DOB post “First!!!”?

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
3:22 pm

I’m going down to the game. I am 8 wins and 4 losses on the year which normally would be really good but I think we have only lost about 4 at home all year so maybe just ok…They got tickets for $1. No excuses. Go Braves!!

Hillbilly

August 30th, 2010
3:23 pm

Got to sinking in the place where I once stood…Now I ain’t livin’ like I should.

south georgia braves

August 30th, 2010
3:24 pm

Funny how this was a mistake in the first paragraph:
“tp be very good hitter”
TP? Trying to say something?

Just kidding!

Sophee

August 30th, 2010
3:25 pm

<em.Let me repeat: Prado, according to Baseball America’s survey of major league managers, is the third-best overall hitter in the league behind MVP and Triple Crown candidates Pujols and Votto.

Nice.

Sophee

August 30th, 2010
3:25 pm

Not nice that I sorta McFanned that one though.

McFann ;Ô; ;Ô;

August 30th, 2010
3:26 pm

OK, internet malfunction…as I was saying…

Thanks for the new Blog, Chief!

Keep in mind, the Braves have the best home record in the majors (46-18), and the National League has home-field advantage in the World Series. Whichever NL team wins the pennant, they can thank McCann for that home-field advantage.

Ah yes. Whoever it is if it’s not the Braves cann thank him by not playing that freakishly annoying and utterly stupid shift on him next year, danke. :cool:

CSpin

August 30th, 2010
3:26 pm

“he projects tp be very good hitter”

You sound archaic. Or like Tarzan. Me pitcher, you hitter.

McFann ;Ô; ;Ô;

August 30th, 2010
3:27 pm

Sophee

Naughty, naughty!

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
3:27 pm

Keylargo is still beating the Kelly Johnson drum?
How much would he have cost?
And why, when the Braves already had a quality 2B in Prado – who was much cheaper – would they give Johnson millions of dollars to be a backup?
Makes no sense.
Though I do admit, hindsight is a wonderful thing. And I’m happy for Kelly. Honestly. Always seemed like a good dude. But I wouldn’t call letting him go a mistake. He wasn’t going to play here.

CraZyTRaDeMaN ©

August 30th, 2010
3:28 pm

he comes back up tuesday? Im kinda ready to see how he will fair at 3b at the major league level—bravofan

bravofan, Well it wasn’t that good at AAA level so I don’t see it being any better at the major league level.

P-Town Brave ©

August 30th, 2010
3:29 pm

If Kelly were really as good as you say he is, he never EVER would have cleared waivers.

BTW, his road stats:

.248/.332/.393/.725

7 HR and 18 RBI (in more AB than at home)

So yes, I stand by my original statement, and it has nothing to do with being anti Kelly…

Gee, maybe a few other teams who could use a 2b saw something they didn’t like, well, considering ALL 29 teams didn’t put a claim in on him, even though he’s making a manageable salary AND under team control for next season…

But as stated, was not claimed by ANYONE.

McFann ;Ô; ;Ô;

August 30th, 2010
3:29 pm

Brian from SC Bobby put Derrek in the 4th spot against righties there for a few days, but then fixed it back.

Oh, hardy har! I knew your gloat was coming, it just took a while. :P

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
3:30 pm

Kelly Johnson is a fine player and a guy that’s easy to root for. That’s your opinion to say it was a mistake to let him go. My opinion is that guy was not a money player. In 2008 the guy hit .400 in September to increase him numbers. Of course we were 20 games below .500. Not crunch time by any means. In 2007 we made a run for the Wildcard and he hit .200 in September. He never struck me as big time player that produced under pressure situations. A great start this year in April and decent numbers since in Arizona were that hasn’t been a lot of meaningful games. Prado has been a catalyst for this team and a warrior. Got to look at more than numbers sometime.

Brian from SC

August 30th, 2010
3:30 pm

Hopefully the Braves will prove me wrong…but I don’t get the feeling that the pitching matchup tonight favors them. First of all, it’s a lefty, and that’s just about enough said right there. Second, Mitsch doesn’t walk people…just 2 walks total in his three starts this year. We all know how walk-driven the Braves’ offense is. I have visions of Scott Olsen in this one. But he’s only gone six innings each in those three starts, so we should be able to get to the bullpen.

But that being said, the Braves have been swinging it pretty well in the last week or two. And it’s not like the Mets have a good matchup with Jurrjens on the mound.

I anticipate a 3-2 kind of game tonight.

P-Town Brave ©

August 30th, 2010
3:30 pm

McFann-

I’d rather they all thank him by going home early in October and letting him catch Game 1 of the World Series ;-)

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
3:30 pm

Kelly Johnson has a slugging percentage of .581 in Arizona.
A slugging percentage of .393 everywhere else. But it’s “ludicrous” to bring that up?

bravofan

August 30th, 2010
3:31 pm

crazy: yea I just hope we dont trade him away I dont see that happening. We need him as a backup to Lee and the whole 3b thing and that is just more depth off the bench and gives the other team something to think about.

ncscoots

August 30th, 2010
3:32 pm

If Kelly were really as good as you say he is, he never EVER would have cleared waivers.

Not clearing waivers is your standard of excellence?

yellerjacket

August 30th, 2010
3:32 pm

Hey Mr. O’Brien, I saw somewhere that Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth are headlining a thin class of 2011 free agent outfielders. What do you believe are the Braves’ chances/intentions of signing a guy like Crawford in the offseason?

CraZyTRaDeMaN ©

August 30th, 2010
3:32 pm

Tuesday is the last home game for Gwinnett so I assume he isn’t going to travel with the team so he should be back Wednesday and hopefully not to play 3B.

bravesgrl4lifeeeeeeeee

August 30th, 2010
3:33 pm

I am getting ready to head out to my prison ministry tonight. Will get to listen on the radio on the way home, missing from start until about 8:30. All I have to say right now is GO BRAVES!!!!

BTW, DOB, if you didn’t get a chance to get out to Chastain last night for Joan Jett and Billy Idol, you missed a heck of a show. Both still sound as good as ever.

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:33 pm

Why don’t you post his home stats P town? Or even his overall? They too good?

Chilidog75 would you like to have a $2.5 million outfielder that hit 22 or so HR’s and 90 rbi’s?

P-Town Brave ©

August 30th, 2010
3:34 pm

Scoots-

No, but given his salary and the fact that he is under team control through next year, I would think if he were really that good, he wouldn’t clear waivers…

I mean its not like he’s making 12 mil…

And yes, slugging .393 away from Chase Field does not help his case at all…

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
3:34 pm

Key.
Sure.
Do you know of one?

bravofan

August 30th, 2010
3:34 pm

crazy: unfortunatley I think we will see him at 3b soon

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
3:34 pm

When did Kelly ever hit 20 homeruns for Atlanta?

Bravissimo

August 30th, 2010
3:35 pm

Did any of you see the HR Laroche hit in SF the other day?…Way out in the water………

bravofan

August 30th, 2010
3:35 pm

I have my tix for october 2nd bobby cox night and cant wait

Greg Maddux

August 30th, 2010
3:35 pm

Let’s go beat the Mets – just like the old days!

Jinx

August 30th, 2010
3:37 pm

keylargo, stop looking at what KJ is now, and look at what he was for more than half a season last year. He stunk.

P-Town Brave ©

August 30th, 2010
3:37 pm

Key-

Why are you such a douche?!

If you had read my opening statement on my 1st post responding to someone not named you, you would have noticed that I only discussed his road stats and why no one plucked him off waivers…

Everyone knows he hits well at home…hell, who doesn’t hit well in Arizona?!

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
3:37 pm

Kelly Johnson? Really? If the next subject is the Texeira trade I’m going to lose my sh**

Jinx

August 30th, 2010
3:37 pm

Bravissimo, yessir. Roachy crushed it. It was off the plate inside too.

Fred

August 30th, 2010
3:38 pm

bravo fan, I’m sure .Don will also be there to honor #6. He is, after all, a huge fan of our esteemed manager.

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
3:38 pm

Beat the Mets….Beat the Mets…Step right up and beat the Mets

Roy Hobbs

August 30th, 2010
3:39 pm

In regards to comparing Kelly Johnson and Martin Prado…while I think Prado is just a better player in general, you need only to watch that walk-off yesterday and Martin’s reaction to see the primary difference. He is clearly a vocal and beloved leader of this club. Kelly was a quiet (albeit good) guy. I feel like the personality and clubhouse chemistry on this club is strongly linked to Prado. Anyway, my two cents…

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:40 pm

As far as KJ clearing waivers, you must not understand the procedure. You can be almost all the Braves have cleared waivers since none of them were claimed. Just because you are put on waivers and claimed only means you can negotiate with the team that has his rights. They may want players, money, withdraw him from waivers or in Manny’s case just to get rid of him (and his salary).

south georgia braves

August 30th, 2010
3:40 pm

Anyone notice that most of the best pitchers are in the NL now?

Nova Scotia Steve

August 30th, 2010
3:41 pm

Are the Braves the worst walk-off victory celebrators in the league???

Damn….You’d think they have this thing down by now…

Joey

August 30th, 2010
3:41 pm

Kelly Johnson is back on the Braves? Jeez, we’ve got at least 3 players who can play 2nd base better than that popup-dropper – Infante, Prado, Conrad.

MFin04

August 30th, 2010
3:41 pm

This atlantabaseballtalk.com podcast is quite enjoyable.

Roy Hobbs

August 30th, 2010
3:41 pm

Also, that new JTE album sounds killer

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
3:41 pm

Arizona would gladly trade 2nd baseman with us while the rest of the league laughed their a***** off. I like KJ but if we still had him we are fighting the Mets for 2nd place

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:42 pm

Jinx – do you even remember he was put on the disabled list at that time with both wrists being injured?

P-Town Brave ©

August 30th, 2010
3:42 pm

KEY-

NOBODY CLAIMED HIM…

He wasn’t claimed and pulled back…

He wasn’t claimed and two teams just couldn’t get together on a deal…

HE WAS NOT CLAIMED!

I understand the procedure just fine…I had the luxury of explaining it to a few bloggers a few weeks ago…

Its much more likely that you just don’t understand that no one wants a streaky hitter like Kelly who is only good in hitters parks for a couple weeks at a time.

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:43 pm

Joey you’re a real dumass.

Joey

August 30th, 2010
3:43 pm

keylargo, can you check on Dale Murphy’s stats in the Morman Softball League? We may have given up on him to soon also . . .

ncscoots

August 30th, 2010
3:43 pm

And yes, slugging .393 away from Chase Field does not help his case at all…

The only point I was trying to make about the guy is that he seems to have adjusted in the second half. His splits were vicious early and he seems to have turned that around. Thus, the comments that his year is solely a product of home cooking seem no longer accurate, and I merely pointed that out. It’s not a referendum on any Braves-related issues.

FYI, 3 homers and 5 doubles at home in the second half; 3 homers and 6 doubles on the road, in fewer games.

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
3:44 pm

I wonder if Prado was put on waivers at the end of last year … if he would have been claimed by a team?
I’m thinking, yeah.

Mitchell

August 30th, 2010
3:45 pm

Why in God’s name is Derrek Lee batting clean-up?

Sophee

August 30th, 2010
3:45 pm

Kelly will forever haunt this blog.

Sophee

August 30th, 2010
3:47 pm

Hey, we’re a top story on Yahoo. :-D

Joey

August 30th, 2010
3:47 pm

Did he not drop a popup (the very last out of the game) against the Phillies to start a slide, from which the Braves didn’t recover in ‘09?

That make you feel smart to call people names?

heymmered

August 30th, 2010
3:47 pm

DLee will go yard tonight.

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
3:47 pm

Mitchell, “Why in God’s name is Derrek Lee batting clean-up?”
So the Braves can prove you wrong once again…Just like yesterday…and the day before, etc.

jerry blooger

August 30th, 2010
3:48 pm

mitchell- To help us win another game

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
3:49 pm

Feeling it with D Lee as well. If he is healthy he will start hitting. Maybe tonite.

ncscoots

August 30th, 2010
3:49 pm

Kelly will forever haunt this blog.

Perhaps. But I’m pretty sure it was somebody dogging the guy that started the thread in the first place. Almost nobody in the forum who liked the guy as a player ever brings him up.

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
3:50 pm

Mitchell, I am going to go out on a limb and say you have never play organized ball outside of Little League. Your lack of understanding team sports is so transparent.

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
3:51 pm

Ncscoots,
You can defend him all you want. Guy has had a good (not great) year.
But one of the KJ defenders goes out of his way to antagonize.
Using words like “ludicrous” and “dumass.” Asking people if they understand what clearing waivers means.

So when that happens, the blog becomes anti-KJ real quick.

MitcGo2hell

August 30th, 2010
3:51 pm

Why in Jesus name is Cabrera batting 8th?

Choppinmama

August 30th, 2010
3:52 pm

I posted this towards the end of the old blog:

I just finished a great book, The Niekro Files. It’s a series of letters written during the 1987 season between Phil and Joe. Phil was 47, released by the Yankees and playing with the Indians. Pat Corrales was managing the Indians then. Joe was still with the Yankees. They were both playing to break the record of 529 wins by pitching brothers, Jim and Gaylord Perry.

Poor Phil, he tries to hang on that season, getting traded around, but ends up pitching just one more game with his beloved Braves for Tanner. Bobby is still in the front office then. This was also the year of the “emery board” fiasco.

Interesting from Phil – “The last few years I was with the Braves they had some problems with marijuana, and they weeded (!) those players out fast. One road trip I was invited to a hotel room and it didn’t take long to smell what they were smoking.”

So, who did we get rid of that year?

Joe gets traded to the Twins, who end up winning the WS that year. It is an informative, poignant and behind-the-scenes look at these two brothers and their ups and downs of the season. Those two guys sure loved each other, their polka and were proud of their Polish heritage.

Turns out the copy I picked up has an inscription to good friend “Don” by Phil. Definitely a good read for baseball – especially Braves – fans.

jerry blooger

August 30th, 2010
3:52 pm

mitchell and schultz may be the same person

CraZyTRaDeMaN ©

August 30th, 2010
3:53 pm

Sophee not after a few years of .245 14Hr once he leaves Arizona!

Space Monkey

August 30th, 2010
3:55 pm

I love all these come back wins. They are very exciting. But let’s not bury ourselves and try to dig out of holes in the playoffs. Good teams will kill you if you do that. I’m not sure of the stats (it might be interesting for DOB to chime in on this) but in general the first team to score a run wins a playoff game. Pitching is just that much better in the playoffs.

keylargo

August 30th, 2010
3:57 pm

The problem most of you bloggers have is that you seem to think it was an “either/or” case. I just suggested that KJ could have played left field for about $2.5 M and the Braves would have been stronger.

The only thing all of you combined can come up with negative about Kelly was that he was “streaky”. I know he had slumps but he also got hot and hit with the very best in the league. Not in A ball or AA ball but in MLB. I had always hoped he would become more consistent and I still think he will as he gets older.

The stats for KJ and MP for this year are identical. So you guys object to having another Prado like bat? For $2.5 Million? We’re paying Nate more, Matt D more, I think Melky more and you object to another starter that has shown he can carry a team?

My point is that he would have been an asset to the team whether at 2B, LF or 3B and Martin Prado would also been a Brave.

CraZyTRaDeMaN ©

August 30th, 2010
3:57 pm

No Keylargo and Don are the same person because they both obsess over things and repeat themselves. .Don is obsessed with Bobby and Keylargo is obsessed with Kelly Johnson. Maybe, they’re the same person named .Don-Key .

Greg Norton

August 30th, 2010
3:58 pm

Sophee…you should know that I am the one who will forever haunt this blog.

jerry blooger

August 30th, 2010
3:58 pm

McFann ;Ô; ;Ô;

August 30th, 2010
3:59 pm

P-Town Brave I’d rather they all thank him by going home early in October and letting him catch Game 1 of the World Series

That works, too. Better, actually…I was just going worse-case scenario, like, if the Braves didn’t go to the World Series.

How ’bout catching Game 7? That’d be in Turner Field, too, right?

Sophee

August 30th, 2010
3:59 pm

Sorry, Norty. I bow down to your greatness.

:-D

monty

August 30th, 2010
4:00 pm

Brian from SC

Thanks for the reverse jinx at 3:30. I like how you think!

Brave4life-1995 all over again??

August 30th, 2010
4:00 pm

I am starving

CraZyTRaDeMaN ©

August 30th, 2010
4:01 pm

Norton no you’re just a one sided joke Kelly actually has blind loyalists.

Jinx

August 30th, 2010
4:01 pm

found this in reference to KJ

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=4305100

Brooks Conrad got his chance when this bum went on the DL too. Prado in the lineup, Brooksie on the bench > KJ being on this team. He got his chance with this team and failed to capitalize. Dear God, he’s not a Brave. He has had a good season with the D-bags, big f’n deal. He did this there, that here, blah blah blah. No way to say he could have done that here this year. The fact is, he never did, and that’s what we have to go on, not what he is doing in a different division, in a hitters paradise.

Brave4life-1995 all over again??

August 30th, 2010
4:02 pm

I cant wait any longer for this game to begin

GT Fan

August 30th, 2010
4:02 pm

I hope both members of this pair of buddies coming up from the minors will flourish for a long time.

CB

August 30th, 2010
4:02 pm

I predict 20-12 the rest of season with a 95-67 finish,division champs or tip your hat to the Phillies.

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
4:02 pm

Keylargo- let it go man. He’s gone and not coming back, just like Yunel, Elvis and Neftali.

TennesseePaul

August 30th, 2010
4:03 pm

Thanks for the work D.O’B.

But how many know that Freeman, who doesn’t turn 21 until Sept. 12, is regarded as an exceptional defensive first baseman

I knew this. But I don’t think I’ve hidden my opinions of the guy.

scoots: from the previous blog…k/bb…priceless.

Frankie Wren

August 30th, 2010
4:04 pm

We get straight this week against the southpaws(need ya D Lee). I really think we take 4 against the Mets and finish up beating Johan on Thursday. What’s Reyes situation?

Joey

August 30th, 2010
4:04 pm

keylargo, didn’t KJ ruin his arm, or have Tommy John surgery that ended his outfield career? Serious question.

chilidog75

August 30th, 2010
4:04 pm

Key.
The problem is you refuse to acknowledge or care about his home/road splits …. as if you think he would have 19 HRs playing in Atlanta.
You also refuse to acknowledge or care that he was awful a season ago – which explains why the Braves were willing to give him up.

Yes. If they knew that KJ would play LF and hit 25 HRs and drive in 90 and get on base 38 percent of the time, they’d have signed him in a heartbeat.
They didn’t. Because nothing he had EVER done suggested he would have a season like that.
And why would you pay someone $3 million to be a back-up? Someone who hit .228 last year and had an OPS of UNDER .700?

Again. It’s hindsight.

Joey

August 30th, 2010
4:07 pm

Me too, GT Fan. I remember DOB gushing about them both hitting prodigious dingers in Spring Training ‘08.

ncscoots

August 30th, 2010
4:07 pm

TennPaul, thanks. I chuckled my own self.

BraveMan

August 30th, 2010
4:08 pm

DOB

are you saying you know Freeman will get called up or you just speculating?

CB

August 30th, 2010
4:09 pm

I actually hated when the Braves traded Eddie Matthews in 1966. 44 years later I am just about over it. keylargo and scoots,I hope it doesn’t take you guys this long,lol.

T for Texas

August 30th, 2010
4:09 pm

Are the Braves the worst walk-off victory celebrators in the league???

Not to get into it with ya NS Steve, but I’d have to say the Angels with Kendry Morales and the Marlins with Chris Coughlan finish first and second above the Braves in this department–however Braves may win most awkward celebrators for sure.

Larry the Cable Guy

August 30th, 2010
4:10 pm

CraZyTRaDeMaN: “Don-Key”

Now that’s funny. I don’t care who you are, that’s funny!

timthebrave

August 30th, 2010
4:11 pm

Lets talk about something relevant……..Good luck to KJ in Arizona but time to move on.

TennesseePaul

August 30th, 2010
4:11 pm

keylargo: …The stats for KJ and MP for this year are identical. So you guys object to having another Prado like bat? For $2.5 Million? We’re paying Nate more, Matt D more, I think Melky more and you object to another starter that has shown he can carry a team?…

I didn’t read this whole thread so forgive me if I’m like a child wandering into the middle of a movie…

Two things… First, KJ is making less than Melky. However, if the Braves had retained him through arbitration he’d likely be making as much or more than Melky. So to keep him the Braves would have had to non-tender, then negotiate on the open market. In short, it’s not a given he would be making $2.5M if he were still a Brave.
Second, I agree whole heartedly that having KJ instead of Melky would be much, much, much better, regardless of price. If he cost less, or more than Melky I’d be all for it. But alas, it is no secret that I am no fan of Melky.

I’d keep Diaz though. I like him too.

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