10:06 am December 6, 2010, by David O'Brien
December 6th, 20101:20 pm
MattE in LA? I suppose I could live with that
Nova Scotia Steve
December 6th, 20101:21 pm
I’m going to guess Beachy or Minor for Cain…Just a thought….I’d do it…Could be CF of the future for Los Bravos.
Plus we have a surplus of prospect pitching – and I’d be very surprised if they all pan out the way some Braves fans think they are about to…
December 6th, 20101:25 pm
Jordan Schafer has had one good year in A-ball, Rome Ga. and he was Juiced then. He is not a major league player. He was a joke at Gwinnett. He was a joke at Misssissippi and he has never been woth a dime . He is built up by media idiots. The Braves have several outfielders in the minors that are a lot better. Check it out!
December 6th, 20101:26 pm
we need a CF that can play at MLB level in 2011… not a few years in the future. Cain doesn’t solve anything for Braves. No way I’d trade good pitching prospects for that Cain kid when we still haven’t seen what Schafer can/will do.
December 6th, 20101:28 pm
The Braves potentially already have a Cain type player in Schaefer. The key word for both these guys “potentially”. Might be too early to pull the trigger on a deal like that without giving Jordan a chance. Rather have Chippers replacemnt in camp. Don’t know if this Kepplinger guy is him.
Josh Smith For 3
December 6th, 20101:29 pm
I don’t think any of us expect Schafer to return and just fit right into the lineup. He’ll need time to adjust to the game at full speed again, but once he does I don’t see why he wouldn’t be able to tear it up like he did before his injury. The dude is a physical specimen and showed all the tools to be a solid player, so he’s got my second-chance vote.
December 6th, 20101:31 pm
yogi2…Thats why the Braves said he was the best player in ST in 2009 before he got hurt. The media guys ran out there and helped him be good. Gimme a break.
yogi2…that was a thoughtful post. Show me two outfielders in our system with more talent than Schafer.
And DOB wasn’t joking, for that spring training and first week of the 2009 season, he was one of if not the best player on the team.
Lollygagger…………….Know that Morse played right field AND some first base for the Nats last year. Guy looks like a ballplayer to me. Wouldn’t mind having him with the Braves.
Still, its hard to picture a player contributing less than McLouth did for most of last year.
Good thing it isn’t last year, anymore.
Seriously, lots of folks ignore the fact that players change…during the year, during the offseason, shoot, almost all the time. They get stronger or weaker, they build good or lose bad muscle memory, they mature physically or mentally, all sorts of things. I mean, if you think McLouth has lost every ounce of ML skill at age 28, then you’re right to worry, LOL. Otherwise, you have to believe that the probability that he will return to his norms is higher than that of a crash-and-burn.
Me, personally, I have no idea. I don’t know if he’ll have an epiphany working in the cage this offseason, or if he’ll wander in the wilderness pursuing his swing. And even if he’s better, will he be good enough? Don’t know.
I do know that almost no player has the same type of year back-to-back, because performance is more of a sine wave than a moving average. Thus, I continue to think Nate will rebound, until he shows he can’t. Just have to get the mote of last year out of your eye to see the possibility.
P-Town Brave ©
December 6th, 20101:33 pm
Why not get Cain if for nothing else than to put alongside Schafer and Heyward?
We have NOTHING in the system in the OF of worth in the lower levels that I know of, and what was supposed to be one of our bright future guys, well, he just got shipped to the Yankees for some Sbarro pizza.
December 6th, 20101:36 pm
^^ and by that, I mean at a future date (obviously)
December 6th, 20101:37 pm
Jordan Schafer has had one good year in A-ball, Rome Ga. and he was Juiced then
Have you seen Schafer?
December 6th, 20101:39 pm
ncscoots…Well said. It looks like Nate has lost his confidence. How bad do you think this guy felt when he had to tuck his tail between his legs and ride a bus to minor league games with guys that may never make it? When Nate hit that game winning home run and the team left the dugout, you could tell he was ecstatic. His performance was embarassing last year. Who do you think it bothered more?
BTW great blog BOB…perhaps you can do one on Heyward’s off season workout routine?
The Pirates and the A’s are possible destinations for Kawakami. Pirates have money to spend (for once), and need a starter.
He might be a good one-year fit for Oakland, too.
Whichever team trades for him, one of those or another, I’m guessing Braves eat at least $4 mill of deal.
Cain is obviously much closer than that of Schafer to the big leagues. We could lose half the line-up next year if Chipper retires, Uggla, Gonzalez, and McLouth hit FA so it would be nice to fill some holes now. Prado’s versatility is always value, but if we have a speedy capable OF in Cain it would add some much needed depth to the OF.
December 6th, 20101:42 pm
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not defending Nate at all for his performance. Don’t think he is doing it on purpose…If he has a bad year this year, he is done in MLB.
December 6th, 20101:44 pm
heres a sad story…a high school catcher playing for the Braves dies after getting hit in the chest with a pitch.
What’s tragic to me is that McLouth will only get chance after chance after chance to have that CF job because of his salary. Bucha BS because at least Schafer can run em down and has a cannon for an arm.
Nats are stupid. $18 M a year for the next seven for that fugly fool? OMG are they dumb!
How do you figure?
Schafer has actually playd significant time IN the big leagues…
A few teams have both Diaz and Francoeur on their list of possibilities, including Yankees and Phillies. It sounds as if Diaz is getting interest from at least three or four teams.
December 6th, 20101:45 pm
I really want Schafer to be back. I cant remember how many times I yell at McLouth for not throwing the ball. Just would hate to see the Braves pay 7+ mill for a back up outfielder. Course we did pay KK 6 mill last year to sit on the bench.
The A Bomb
Well… if Kawakami goes to Oakland it’s on the Pacific Rim (sort of)….. and if he does well Beane can swing him around in a deal in July.
If Kawakami goes to Pittsburgh I guess they can begin counting Splashdown hits into the Monongahela River. Or the Ohio. Or the Allegheny.
Just pull the trigger Frank.
We could lose half the line-up next year if Chipper retires, Uggla, Gonzalez, and McLouth hit FA so it would be nice to fill some holes now.
In that scenario, I doubt a light-hitting OF would be of much use filling the holes. The team would be back to trying to find corner offense from an OF, and certainly a guy such as Cain wouldn’t fill that bill.
December 6th, 20101:47 pm
I won’t give up more than Hoover for Cain. Cain has absolutely no power and very limit ML experience. I’d just assume to stay away from giving up too much there.
Werth would have to put up his ‘09 season numbers for the next seven years straight for that contract to be worth it in my eyes. That’s not including his defense needs to continue to be top notch for the seven years. Do those GM’s just not think about this stuff in the long run?
December 6th, 20101:48 pm
If that’s what it takes to move KK, then done and done.
He could play before the injury, I don’t think anyone can really question that.
Pirates just signed Scott Olsen. They might not need that starter anymore.
December 6th, 20101:49 pm
Good news, DOB. Sounding like Braves might actually be able to save more money on KK than some thought originally. If we can “save” $2 million on him, there’s the money for b-u IF right there. Good news indeed.
Pirates just signed Scott Olsen. Do they need two starters? Yep, I think they need about 5
December 6th, 20101:51 pm
KK had to have ticked off some people. I say that because everybody knows Bobby will give a guy chance after chance and if that doesn’t work then he’ll give him a couple more tries. In KK’s case it seemed like even Cox pulled the trigger and his his carcus in that pen for half the year. I think it’s possible they didn’t care for his work ethic. Maybe even disgusted by it.
Sell him like he’s a workaholic Wren.
I want to know: Is CAIN, ABLE?
December 6th, 20101:53 pm
Gosh Richbrave….thats a good one…
Do you think if we traded for him it would be, A Brave New World?
December 6th, 2010
Pirates just signed Scott Olsen. Do they need two starters? Yep, I think they need about 5
Aw-w-w unbelievable, you’re forgetting my main man CHARLIE MORTON.
December 6th, 20101:54 pm
“Schafer has actually playd significant time IN the big leagues…”
And a low of AA since then. Hard to come back after that long and be successful. If he’s healthy he’s got a chance, but I’m making a case for Cain in order to add depth to the OF.
P-Town Brave ©
December 6th, 2010
Gosh Richbrave….thats a good one…
I’m just hoping somebody doesn’t die.
December 6th, 20101:55 pm
Hey… the Pirate’s still have Charlie Morton. LOL
December 6th, 20101:56 pm
Do those GM’s just not think about this stuff in the long run?
I’m pretty sure that “the long run” is exactly why they were willing to overpay. Even the Nats guys will say publicly that they gave more years and dollars than they would have liked. But setting a head-held-high atmosphere and developing a culture of winning takes more than lip-service.
The Tigers made much the same deal when they corraled Magglio Ordonez a few years ago. Seemed a foolish contract. But it gained cred for the organization when they spoke to other FAs later, and almost certainly helped them sign some guys they might otherwise have lost.
FA is an inefficient way to build an organization, but time has value, too. If signing Werth to this contract allows the org to accelerate their plan by a year or two, then the back end of contract becomes less of an albatross and more of a R-and-D cost.
Besies, who knows what guys will be making in seven years, LOL? $18MM might be a bargain.
richbrave you beat me to it.
December 6th, 20101:57 pm
Schafer has yet to prove he’s fit and ready. One report from DOB and “the sky opens and the Lord bless the Braves with Schafer again”. He should earn a spot on the team, fans, not give it to him. I do hope he is ready but its takes more that a sports report. A little time in AAA will not hurt him.
Don’t forget he’s played like 2-3 months in 3 years…gee he really deserves it.
This is not a knock on DOB. I know he is doing his job but he’s not your Pal.
December 6th, 20101:58 pm
Not a chance I would trade Beachy or Minor for L. Cain. That’s insanity to the highest degree. Kudos to the Brewers if they get either….
The Nats had to over pay because FA’s don’t want to go there, yet.
December 6th, 20101:59 pm
Jordan Schafer is a farm hand….
Until he performs at the ML level over a series of months, he is a wanta-be to a never was.
I get tired of hearing about dudes like him…
December 6th, 20102:00 pm
And what exactly are you proposing we give up in return? I have nothing against acquiring the guy but to give up anything more than some like JJ Hoover would be ridiculous.
December 6th, 20102:01 pm
MattyRoss: Cox is very approachable, writers and just about anyone else in the lobby stops to say hello.
December 6th, 20102:02 pm
He should earn a spot on the team, fans, not give it to him. I do hope he is ready but its takes more that a sports report.
At what point during the actual blog or subsequent comments did you conclude that Schafer is going to be given a ML spot simply becasue he deserves it. Everybody keeps saying that he will need to perform in ST and more for him to get a shot again. If you have a problem with Schafer that’s fine, but stop putting words in other people’s mouth.
December 6th, 20102:03 pm
Cain was alreayd playing at the MLB level last year for the Brewers and was pretty productive. What are you talking about a few years down the road? Are you sending him down? Watch a game before you comment.
So what exactly is Cox’s role in these meetings? Does he give input on team building or is it more of a greet and meet role for him now.
December 6th, 20102:05 pm
Does anyone know what the Braves are doing with (gulp)…..Conrad??
December 6th, 20102:07 pm
I understand where you’re coming from… he hasn’t done anything other than that first week.
I do think you have to take into account his ST performance and how he played that first week before he got hurt. He was more than anybody could have hoped for.
McLouth, on the other hand, has been the exact opposite of what the Braves hoped for. About as horrible as a guy could be without being named Melky.
If I were the one making the decisions I’d give McLouth the opportunity to prove himself during ST and that’s it. If he can’t hit guys throwing at 75% then he shouldn’t be in the lineup. Let hungry guys like Young and Schafer battle it out.
loafer: as we’ve written a bunch of times, the Braves are bringing Conrad back with a chance to compete for a job in spring training, same as last year.
hope Schaefer rallies. wouldn’t take a helluva lot to supplant McLouth in my mind.
Efrim, the way you broke all that down sounds smart and might very well be correct. Just looking at the surface though and 7 years at $18 M per for a guy in his early 30’s is plain silly any way you want to slice and dice it. Just my opinion.
December 6th, 20102:09 pm
Anything more than Hoover would be a shock. This guy is a speed OF, nothing more. I’m not at the Winter Meetings idk what the Brewers want or what the Braves are willing to give up, but as we all know by now Teharen, Delgado, and Minor aren’t going anywhere. That’s what I do know
Sorry Efrim, I meant that for ncscoots.
Ozzie is doing his 30-minute session with media. Asked about Werth’s contract, he said, “I wish I was his agent. Or his wife.”
thanks DOB. Just been too Falcons focused and must have missed it. I expect that’s code for he doesn’t make it out of spring training. Just guessing.
December 6th, 20102:10 pm
Sounds like Matty D wont have a hard time at all finding a job, teams are just lining up for him. Good for him, hope he gets at least 3 million out of it.
Conrad gave up his number 26 to Uggla, so what does that say?
December 6th, 20102:11 pm
Just looking at the surface though and 7 years at $18 M per for a guy in his early 30’s is plain silly any way you want to slice and dice it. Just my opinion.
You bet; it’s mine, too, LOL. Just pointing out what may have been the thought process behind it does not mean I agree with the execution thereof.
I’m just thankful that I’ll never, ever have to sit through another game of watching Melky Cabrera attempt to play the game of baseball.
Be great if Schafer can get all the way back to the highly though of CF prospect he was a couple years ago. Be even better if he goes out in spring training and takes the job away from McLouth. Braves got took on that one, McLouth is just awful. But with Schafer in center, surrounded by Prado and Heyward, it might actually be a OF that isn’t flat embarassing like last years was.
That Uggla will wear 26 next season. Amirite?
December 6th, 20102:12 pm
i would hate for him to have to keep working 6 hour days.
December 6th, 20102:13 pm
The equipment manager came out of the locker room and said “I’ve got a few numbers up for grabs… let’s see here… starting with 26″ and Conrad raised his hand. The guy threw the jersey at him and it went right through Conrad’s legs and landed at Uggla’s feet, so he picked it up and put it on.
Asked about Werth’s contract, he said, “I wish I was his agent. Or his wife.”
Dude should have his own talk-show or stand-up act.
Robert, that means that Conrad will have to find a new number.
December 6th, 20102:14 pm
My Conrad wounds haven’t healed. Despite dousing them with sever amounts of alcohol.
December 6th, 20102:18 pm
Hey I saw where somebody asked DOB if he thought the Nats were a playoff contender with Werth…..and correctly he responded no. I agree because to me Werth just replaces Dunn. But I see where LaRoche has interest in going to Washington. If you add LaRoche with his good defense and 25hrs, plus Werth, plus a solid pitcher or 2 (which the Nats are looking for), then all of a sudden the Nats look like a very respectable baseball team. Think about this 3 through 6: Zimmerman, Werth, LaRoche, Willingham (if they keep him), that is very solid. Better than Mets and Fish in my opinion. It will be interesting to see if Wahington actually trys to build a “baseball team” or if they just wanted Werth to pretend to be relavent.
December 6th, 20102:19 pm
“It sounds as if Diaz is getting interest from at least three or four teams.”
And Matty should generate interest. I hope he excells anywhere he lands. If I were Atlanta, I would be interested. Oh yeah, thats right! Atlanta actually had him! lol
December 6th, 20102:20 pm
All you have to do is think of all the clutch pinch hits Conrad had.
Conrad makes the team next yr and come through in the clutch again.
December 6th, 20102:21 pm
Now it’s official: The Phillies are truly “Werthless.”
Scott Boras wants 70+ million for Beltre when one of the few teams that can give that kind of money is effectively out of the running. He has already rejected a $64 M deal from the As. Is he that crazy?
December 6th, 20102:22 pm
Does the eye black kid have a chance to make the Nats next spring?
Braves Fan Since "80
December 6th, 20102:25 pm
I hope Matt, Schafer, MCon all have super spring training…… like to see Jordan mature enough to go to AAA everyday player status and come to the majors in 6 weeks if he stays hot or sooner if McOut returns
I have my doubts about jordan but I remember his first week in the bigs…… I say i would rather he not rush back but come back prepared to stay…. he is still young but younger in playing years…..great years ahead if he is ready……. I recall Josh Hamilton with some struggles along the way…. not tryin to suggest any similarity but the time away from the game
Flat Bill Cap Curse
I agree with someone who posted above that the Braves should take Schafer aside and show him how to wear a baseball cap.
That flat bill stuff looks like crap! Chad Cordero was the first flat biller I saw in the bigs. Started great, then fizzled out. Then there was George Sherrill. Had an all-star year for the Orioles and now is looking for a job. Of course no one here needs to be told about what has happened to Jordan Schafer.
The flat bill cap thing is a curse! Someone share that with the kid!
Seriously, I hate looking at the idiots who wear ‘em that way. They deserve to fall on their face.
December 6th, 20102:26 pm
We really need this kid to step up. I can’t go another season watching McLousy out there.
December 6th, 20102:29 pm
I think KK is going to surprise some Braves fans when he pitches somewhere else.
Has Milky signed with anyone?
Think about this 3 through 6: Zimmerman, Werth, LaRoche, Willingham (if they keep him), that is very solid. Better than Mets and Fish in my opinion.
Marlins can run Ramirez, Stanton, Sanchez, and Morrison out there in the middle, if they desire. Now, that’s awfully young, granted, but that could look pretty nasty from the mound, along about the All-Star break.
Forgot…. Cameron Maybin is another flat bill unit. Seems he’s working out great to, huh?
December 6th, 20102:30 pm
We’ve still got several potential holes in our lineup. Freeman, Chipper, and Mclouth are all unknowns at this point. Everybody is assuming that Freeman will be able to hit major league pitching because of what Heyward did last year, but the truth is that we don’t know yet if he can or is ready to. We’re also assuming that Mclouth is past his struggles from last year and that Chipper won’t get hurt again even if he makes it back from his current problems. We still need some insurance at 1st and 3rd and another major league outfielder.
Someone like Jorge Cantu would fit the bill to back up first and third and we definitely need another outfielder who can play some CF and LF. Cantu has some power and had 100 RBIs as recently as 2009, can play 1st or 3rd base, and Gonzalez is already familiar with him. Posednick probably makes the most sense as a fourth or fifth outfielder given our payroll constraints. I wonder if Wren and Gonzalez are thinking about moving Heyward to CF in case McLouth doesn’t work out and putting Hinske in RF, because right now we don’t have anybody else on our roster capable of playing CF.
December 6th, 20102:32 pm
DOB – just how much money do the braves have left to spend on whatever needed?
Snotboogie ..that was my opinion and its good as yours.
I’m not putting anything in your mouth but I know what you wish………
December 6th, 20102:34 pm
Great stuff, O’Brien. I’m pulling for the kid. Hopefully by the trading deadline he will be doing great at Gwinett, making it impossible to not bring him up and McOut will be showing just enough to have trade value and JS takes over in center with Matt Young serving the 4th OF spot. Speed in the lineup and speed off the bench. That’s my new years wish for 2011…
We have nothing to lose at this point.
Hoping someone is foolish enough to take on KK and a big chunk of his salary and get him the hell out of Atlanta.
T for Texas
December 6th, 20102:35 pm
Hey ever’body, long time no see. Been checking up on the ol’ blog almost daily but haven’t chimed in for a bit–taking a little off season break just waiting til I can jump in and say something really dumb. So here it goes…
I like the Nats gumption in overpaying Werth. Their payroll was non-existent up til now, they just lost their fan favorite in Adam Dunn, and they have to be able to attract a FA starting pitcher or two to that club (rumour has it they are going after Pavano, and making a token attempt at Cliff Lee.) They have a new ballpark in a large market, and it’s time they started acting like a team serious about contending. What better way to do that in professional sports than to start throwing cash around?
Is it, in a vacuum, a good contract–no. But the dude has OPS’d between .861-.921 the last 4 years, after missing 1.5 years due to injury. He is only 31 years old, has athletic lineage, and took the aformentioned year and half break from baseball saving that wear and tear on his body. Also if Nats manage to sign Adam Laroche to play 1B, pull in Pavano, another passable starter, and a closer they become a team that could compete in the AL west or the NL central–too bad for them they are in the NL east. But they become much less of a lauging stock in this division. They had to do this for their fan base that they were on the verge of alienating.
I am surprised by the amount of vitriol the Nats are recieving from the national press on this deal, the same press that lauds the Yankees for making Derek Jeter the highest paid middle infielder in all of baseball. Seems to me that baseball would be excited to see a top FA go to lower echelon team, as opposed to padding the offense of one of the elite over-spenders.
The only thing that bums me out about this deal is that it may cause Dan Uggla and his agent to argue that hi value is higher than it actually is when it comes time to sign him to an extension.
Sorry to offend. Glad to be back on the blog.
December 6th, 20102:36 pm
Everyone in baseball knows that Schafer was on drugs. That is why he was suspended
Heyward’s last year in the minors: .323, 17 HR, 63 RBI
Freeman’s last year in the minors: .319, 18 HR, 87 RBI
No, there’s no guarantee that those numbers will translate to a solid year in the show, but I think Freddie has shown he’s as ready as he’s going to be to find out.
December 6th, 20102:37 pm
I don’t think anyone assumes Freeman will hit major league pitching only “because of what Heyward did last year.” Most people seem to project him as having a respectable rookie campaign. And that’s bc of his excellent performance in AAA at a young age. I’m not saying he’ll do anything amazing, just that he earned the spot as an everyday player based on his own performance and not because people think he’s Heyward. I don’t think the braves need any “insurance” at first base other that if he goes on the DL. And that’s what a BU-INF is for. If he struggles/fails etc. then they address that need at that time.
December 6th, 20102:38 pm
Well said, T for Texas.
SoWeGa – I think KK is going to surprise some Braves fans when he pitches somewhere else. – I don’t disagree. I don’t think we’ll be lamenting letting him go or anything, but I bet he rebounds to pitch okay.
10bravesfan Hey I saw where somebody asked DOB if he thought the Nats were a playoff contender with Werth…..and correctly he responded no.
maybe not in 2011, but they may be in 2012. the nats already had a good enough offense. thier defense and pitching lacked. it looks like they will be improved defensively, so all they need is a few good pitchers. they have some decent arms, plus some top draft choices and strasberg coming back from injury in 2012.
nats are probably still at least a year away, but they could be really good in 2012.
December 6th, 20102:43 pm
December 6th, 20102:44 pm
Werth was a good fit in Philly. He was in the middle of a lineup that didn’t depend on him to be the sole big bopper. If he failed, he could be picked up by Howard, Utley, Ibanez, and of course Rollins, Victorino and Ruiz aren’t chopped liver in that lineup either.
In DC, it will be Zimmerman and Werth. In DC, Werth will shoulder a much larger load. All eyes will be on him to produce. In Philly, he was just one of a half dozen who were expected to produce.
Some people just don’t carry the load that well when they know they are the ONE who has to step up and carry the load. It will be interesting to see how Werth responds.
t for texas I am surprised by the amount of vitriol the Nats are recieving from the national press on this deal, the same press that lauds the Yankees for making Derek Jeter the highest paid middle infielder in all of baseball.
that is a good point.
Good to hear that it seems to be working out for Matty D, one of the true gentlemen in the game and it is sad that he could not fit into the Braves plans, but with Prado in LF there was no room to be spending $2.5 million on somebody that could only back up that one position.
Flat bill… Jo Jo
December 6th, 20102:46 pm
Yeah!!! Flat bill JO JO! Forgot about that failure!
So who should tell the kid he is riding a losing hand with that Hat?
It’s a curse I tell ya!
December 6th, 20102:47 pm
Freeman will be fine. He’s not going to be Pujols in his first year, but he’s not going to be Scott Thorman either.
Have the Braves released any info on the top prospects that are invited to spring training?
flat bill cap In DC, it will be Zimmerman and Werth.
i disagree with this. the nationals offense isnt bad, and hasnt been for a couple of years now. they do ok. they will add a 1st baseman who will hit in the middle of the lineup (like laroche or pena) and they have mike morse, josh willingham, ivan rodreguez, ect. they have a capable team offensively.
December 6th, 20102:48 pm
Rumor now is that there is heavy trade talk around Carlos Beltran.
Man, this offseason went from slow to busy in a hurry didn’t it? Comforting to know that the Braves have already taken care of most of their shopping and won’t get caught up in crazy bidding wars.
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