Braves set to ramp up negotiations with Uggla

ORLANDO – While Braves officials  talk to teams and reps for free agents at baseball’s winter meetings about deals to strengthen the bench and bullpen, negotiations on a potential Big Deal have been on hold.

That changes soon, when general manager Frank Wren and Dan Uggla’s agent ramp up negotiations on a possible contract extension to retain the power-hitting second baseman well beyond the 2011 season.

The Braves got Uggla in a Nov. 16 trade for infielder Omar Infante and reliever Mike Dunn.

“We had a nice discussion when he was in for the [introductory] press conference,” Wren said. “We’re going to get to further discussions probably in the near future. I’ve talked to his representative [recently] but nothing substantative, negotiation-wise.”

A two-time All-Star and 2010 Silver Slugger winner, Uggla has averaged nearly 31 home runs and 93 RBIs in five seasons. He could command at least $10 million in arbitration for 2011 and become a free agent after the season.

The Braves hope he signs a multi-year extension before then. Preferably long before.

Uggla turned down Florida’s four-year, $48 million offer, asked for  five years and $71 million, then was traded.

Raised a Braves fan in Columbia, Tenn., he seems motivated to stay long-term with the Braves and play for his former Marlins manager, Fredi Gonzalez.

“The early discussions we’ve had — really just introductory discussions — have been very pleasant,” Wren said. “I think there’s a mutual desire for us to keep him long-term and for him to stay long-term. I think that’s come through loud and clear, both from Terry [Bross, Uggla's agent] and from Dan.

“And I think we’ve made it very clear that’s what we want to have happen. But we haven’t gone beyond that. There will be an appropriate time for that.” Wren smiled. “And hopefully you guys won’t know a thing about it till it’s over.”

Uggla is the right-handed power hitter the Braves searched years to find. He has more homers (154) in his first five seasons than any middle infielder in major league history.

“He likes playing for Fredi,” Wren said. “His family loves the fact that it’s Atlanta. It’s easier for him, for friends and family to come watch him play.

“He likes hitting in our park. There’s places where you feel very comfortable playing, you feel very comfortable hitting. And then there’s other places you don’t. Those places you don’t, you probably don’t want to go long-term.

“And so we have a lot of those things that are advantages for us.”

Cox leaves meetings for family matter

Retired Braves manager Bobby Cox left the winter meetings late Monday because of an undisclosed illness in his family, and missed a special press conference Tuesday with fellow just-retired managers Joe Torre, Lou Piniella and Cito Gaston.

Braves president John Schuerholz sat in for Cox at the event, hosted by commissioner Bud Selig.

“I don’t know if you’ve ever been a pinch-hitter before, but you are now,” Selig said to Schuerholz.

“It’s like you came to see Babe Ruth come to bat and here comes Eddie Gaedel coming out of the dugout,” Schuerholz joked to a ballroom filled with reporters and TV crews. “That’s probably not what you came for, but here I am.”

Cox has been at the meetings in his new advisor’s role, sitting in with top scouts and other Braves officials during sessions with Wren and his staff in their eighth-floor suite.

Wren said several teams are interested in starting pitcher Kenshin Kawakami, whom the Braves are peddling. They know they will have to cover a significant portion of his $6.67 million salary in order to trade him.

The Braves also want to add more utility-infield and outfield depth, but Wren said there’s no urgency and that they won’t overpay. He mentioned recent free-agent signee Ed Lucas, a former Royals minor leaguer, as a solid utility infield candidate along with returning Braves Diory Hernandez, Brandon Hicks and Brooks Conrad.

“If we find the right guy, the right match, we would probably do something,” Wren said. “But at the same time, if we don’t, we feel like we’re covered right now. With Diory, Hicks, Brooks … there’s enough guys that can catch the ball and can play up the middle, we’ll be OK.

“We’ve signed a guy, Lucas, a veteran minor league shortstop that has good ability. He can swing the bat and really play short well, so he’s another guy that’s already in the mix that has us covered. Our guys feel like we’re in good shape. If we can improve upon some of these positions, we will. But we don’t feel compelled to.”

He said the Braves would like to add a versatile backup outfielder who can play center field.

“We’ve open-minded,” he said. “We’ve identified a guy or two that would be a nice fit for our club if it would work, but we’re not going to go overboard. A guy that could have some versatility, that would be the ideal world, having some versatility out there. But [Jose] Constanza can do that; he can play all over.”

Constanza, 27, is a recent six-year free agent signee. He hit .319 with eight triples, a .373 on-base percentage and 34 stolen bases in 2010 for the Indians’ Triple-A Columbus affiliate, and has a .365 OBP and 210 stolen bases in 657 minor league games over six seasons.

146 comments Add your comment

Mozelle's

December 7th, 2010
8:29 pm

NoCabernet4Dogs

December 7th, 2010
8:33 pm

I hope our new hitting coach can elevate Diory Hernandez to mlb status as he showed so much improvment at AAA last year, would be great to have a lot of young guns in 2012 on the team and then we could spend veteran $$$ on major hitters

[...] According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Braves will soon begin discussing a contract extension for the recently-acquired Dan Uggla. [...]

Bigwheel

December 7th, 2010
9:07 pm

Schuerholz could have used, ‘Everyone came to see Stephen Strasburg pitch, and her comes Miguel Bastista to the mound.’… Too soon?

Branch Rickey

December 7th, 2010
9:11 pm

Centerfielders Lorenzo Cain or Jacoby Ellsbury should be Frank Wren’s primary objective between now and spring training. The Brewers need pitching. Give them Beachy or Minor for Cain, a righthanded hitting speedster and only 24 years old.

If Nate McLouth or Jordan Schafer are still being counted on for centerfield, a mannequin might be an better option. Steroids obviously did something to these hasbeens.

Feeanch

December 7th, 2010
9:12 pm

Bigwheel, someone needs to retweet that. DOB, that was a good one eh?

JT Grace

December 7th, 2010
9:21 pm

Mike Minor is WAY too much to give up for Lorenzo Cain. Beachy and a mid-tier minor leaguer for Cain makes more sense.

joedub

December 7th, 2010
9:23 pm

Good! The only way the Uggla trade stays a good one is if they sign him long term.

tmoneylove

December 7th, 2010
9:24 pm

anyone else worry about Venters’ arm? It has to be on our GM’s mind, doesn’t it?

jonathan Simeone

December 7th, 2010
9:25 pm

Uggla’s deal should not be longer than four years. Also, he should be told that he will be expected to change positions at some point during the contract. If he won’t accept those terms I’d let him go for the draft pick consideration at the end of the season. The Braves didn’t give up too much for him so they shouldn’t pay for any of his expected decline years if his career follows a normal pattern.

hind tit

December 7th, 2010
9:26 pm

Derek Jeter is mad at the Yankees because they wanted to cut his pay because of his age.I wish somebody would piss me off and give me 51 million for three years.

JC Boscan III

December 7th, 2010
9:30 pm

I hope you’re talking about Venters’ right arm.:> He was used so much last year, I hope he’s ambidextrous!! Getting the 3rd lefty for the bullpen (which Frank Wren’s mentioned) might help with that set-up workload. There should be enough depth for us not to wear Venters and Moylan out again…..?………..

450 footer!

December 7th, 2010
9:31 pm

I’d feel better if they got signing Uggla for a few years taken care. I’m tired of giving our young talent up for a one year and gone player. But I feel confident they’ll git it done! Can’t wait for spring training! GO BRAVES!!!

yogi2

December 7th, 2010
9:32 pm

Branch Rickey you really know alot about the Braves, I totally agree with you.Schafer is a ST hero that can’t hit. Last year he was in Gwinnwtt and could not hit,then was optioned to Mississippi and still did not hit, less than .200. Then quit and went home. two years and a secret wrist injury and still nothing. How about the drugs?

jimmymack

December 7th, 2010
9:34 pm

get a c.f who bat’s lead off and steal’s bases

GarynpOH

December 7th, 2010
9:35 pm

Branch Rickey

right give up two young stud pitchers before we see if Mclouth or Schaeffer can even bounce back why not throw in Terherhan too

AdirondackDave

December 7th, 2010
9:38 pm

Thanks for the good blog, DOB. I especially appreciated the Eddie Gaedel reference from JS. I was a Tigers fan back around 1950? and listened to every one of their games that I could back one the radio (WJR in Detroit). No televised baseball in Michigan back then.

Anyway, I was listening when Bill Veeck brought in 3-ft something Gaedel to pinch-hit against the Tigers righthander Ray Herbert. He walked on 4 pitches, of course. I can’t remember who won the game but I’ve never forgotten the Gaedel at bat. The great old Tiger outfielder, Harry Heilman, was the broadcaster.. he died just a year or two after that.

Josh

December 7th, 2010
10:00 pm

How come every time any team signs a player, that player always seemed to grow up rooting for that team? Adrian Gonzalez said in his presser that he grew up rooting for the Red Sox? I bet Uggla really grew up an Expos fan.

AdirondackDave

December 7th, 2010
10:18 pm

Josh, you’re joshing, right?

ryan

December 7th, 2010
10:32 pm

We should not trade Mike Minor we don’t want to have Wainwright 2.0 and what about Grady Seizmore i hear he could be on the block .

luv them braves

December 7th, 2010
10:45 pm

How many would take Jairs J straight up for Ellbury?

Justafan

December 7th, 2010
10:47 pm

Ellsbury has had injuries for two years…hell no on that ? mark.

Justafan

December 7th, 2010
10:54 pm

If Wren can move KK then he might be able to pull off a deal for LH relief pitcher and Cf.
We got a utility player from AAA that will fill the bill.

JonATLBraves

December 7th, 2010
10:54 pm

Lorenzo Cain could = Josh Anderson 2011. If you remember, Anderson had a successful campaign when he was called up and was a “speed threat” as well…

Every day Johnny

December 7th, 2010
11:00 pm

be interesting to see if Fredi zeroes in on two or three relievers, as did Bobby, and uses them every game or if he spreads it around so as to preserve the arms. Also be interested to see if he lets any of our starters go more than 7, which always assured that the bullpen was used up by September.

Lester Miles

December 7th, 2010
11:03 pm

Did Cain hit three homers last year? Outfielder with no power we already have. Sign our old golden boy outfielder, I think he is availabe and has more power than Cain. And can Cain be trusted? Didn’t he kill his brother? Have a great day.

Branch Rickey

December 7th, 2010
11:05 pm

How much longer can we give McLouth & Schafer? They’ve both been huge disasters !

The Braves need SPEED in centerfield, hit leadoff, someone that can get on base, make things happen !

Schafer must have photos of Frank Wren in the shower ! Why is he still being mentioned ?

Lorenzo Cain ! Jacoby Ellsbury !

Bobby Cox

December 7th, 2010
11:08 pm

Gee, Skip. I think McLouth and Schafer are going to have huge comebacks in 2011. They’ve been tearing the hide off the ball in our simulated games. With Terry no longer being the hitting coach, they can only be better. Time for another drink …

vin

December 7th, 2010
11:31 pm

I’m guessing a 5yr deal for 70mil.

Oh Nah!

December 7th, 2010
11:47 pm

I don’t know about McLouth, but Schafer still has value. He was our #3 prospect 2 years ago…do you just give up on those kind of players? Especially a player who was hurt for more than a year? So quick to give up, yeah? There is not enough space to displace the logic, but seriously…i laugh when i read disparaging comments about Schafer like the kid is the worst baseball player ever. Don’t worry tho…many of you will be all over his nutz if he does it big.

K with a K

December 7th, 2010
11:53 pm

If the Braves stay with what we got I think the bench will be Mahter,Ske,Matt Young,Ed Lucas and Diory. Schfer will start the season in AAA unless Chipper is not ready.

Jreeves

December 8th, 2010
12:04 am

K with a K, aren’t you forgetting Ross????

Mather
Ross
Hinske
Ed Lucas/Diory
Matt Young/Non-roster invitee

I fully expect them to add a veteran outfielder with CF experience….but like Wren said, not 100% necessary.

In other news…..good for Matty Diaz getting his deal with Pittsburgh, he will fit that city well.

Marino

December 8th, 2010
12:07 am

I don’t understand why Diaz went to Pittsburgh. He’s most likely going to platoon there anyways….so why not go to a team that can win and was interested in him like the Yankees. Poor Diaz. At least he will be able to see the Penguins winning games towards the end of May when the Pirates are already 15-20 games under .500

Bobby

December 8th, 2010
12:40 am

Dan should get extra incentives with every homer he hits that travels 450+ feet

[...] will try to add some more utility-infield and outfield depth according to Braves GM Frank Wren (via David O’Brien of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). Although Wren said that there’s no urgency and that they won’t [...]

Patrick

December 8th, 2010
1:11 am

With Matty on the Pirates it’ll make it easier for Wren to aquire him back come trade deadline.

MWC

December 8th, 2010
1:48 am

Uggla wants to be here. Wrap this thing up, big time.

[...] Atlanta Braves’ GM Frank Wren started to negotiations with Dan Uggla’s agent on a possible contract extension, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s David O’Brien. [...]

Cameron

December 8th, 2010
2:22 am

I dont understand you Braves fans. Yall could never be satisfied. We get the best power hitting 2B in the majors and yall complain we gave up the whole minor leagues in a rookie RP and a UT Player. And about Schafer, the dude came up in his first major league series, hit a HR in his first game and again I think in his 4th, he was awesome those first couple of games, hurt his wrist bad and couldnt hit, had to have surgery and now 2 years later his wrist is finally healthy, and now he sucks? I guess none of you guys have ever hit 90+MPH fast balls with a really bad wrist that needed surgery all along. But then again im thinking all of you have did it and think its easy, thats why you all can judge him. How bout yall let the guy prove hes been workin his tail off to get back to this before yall talk trash about him. And I dont think yall need to say how bad he sucks anyway, how far to the majors did any of you get?

Dont mean to be hateful around here, im just as big of a Braves fan as yall, but I swear I havent ever heard as many people gripping and complaining as bad as yall.

And this is only directed to the guys that are doing this.

tbhawksfan

December 8th, 2010
4:17 am

This is the first year in many that the Braves will start the season “ready”. Except for a couple of expected minor moves, the only question is Chipper.

I would love for the Braves to list Chipper as a bench player (until he proves he can play) and bring in the solid OFer that is missing. Then the team would truely be “ready” and we’d be in a win / win situation regarding Chipper.

longtimefan

December 8th, 2010
6:15 am

Cameron, you are right on. Uggla is a terrific addition that will probably sign long term. Recent article about Schafer told how hard he has been working and how his wrist is finally 100%. We are looking for a speedy, plus glove leadoff hitting CF with a little pop. That fits Schafer. Lets see if he bounces back in spring training. Do you bozos out there who watch a little baseball,maybe played high school ball and spend your day working at Pizza Hut or delivering packages for UPS- do you think you are a better judge of talent than Wren, a major league GM, and his braintrust? Do you really? Really? Do you think there is any GM in history of any sport that has hit a home run on every trade or free agent signing? Do you think you could do better within the budget constraints of Liberty and without decimating the Farm system which is the future lifeblood of this club? 14 straight titles-all time record for any major sports team. I think i’ll let the experts make the decisions. You wouldn’t want your plumber deciding how to fix your cerebral aneurysm, would you? So, just keep to spinning those pizzas and tossing those packages and let Wren handle the Braves.

Uknowme

December 8th, 2010
6:24 am

Chipper, his fans, and the Braves know that age has been catching up on him for three or more years now. He is past his prime and being physically able to play on a regular basis is past too.
His best options are joining Hinski as a bench player and pinch hitter or retiring. He can not expect his big salary after the upcoming season.
We need to go for an outfielder and starting Prado at third base.
Maybe Frenchy has learned his lesson about over valueing himself and would bust his butt to be back with the Braves. A one year trial would not be very expensive and just might be a good move for the Braves since TP will not be able to mess him up again.
I don’t think Fredi will tolerate things the way Bobby did.

Justafan

December 8th, 2010
7:31 am

Popcorn DOB?

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
8:03 am

To sum the Schafer situation up for the most antagonistic of you – he was an up and coming player with a lot of promise. He had an attitude problem in that he hardly suffers from self-doubt. He was swept up in a problem where he was hanging around with some players who were found to have done drugs. He was never tested for nor found to have done any drugs but was suspended regardless. After getting his timing back after the suspension, he showed a lot of promise both in spring training and the first week of the season before his injury, which he kept silent about, in part due to his ego. After trying to work through the injury, he finally had surgery. After he had the surgery in Sep 2009, he was told it would take one entire year to gain his strength back. He tried to come back too early and found out they were right. Amazingly, he reports he began feeling strong again after Sep 2010. After the full recovery period, he has been working out with success.

While I will grant you that Schafer has not shown any reason to believe he will definitely win the CF job, I will also remind you that he has shown absolutely no reason to think he will be an utter failure. He deserves a chance, and he has as much promise as many of the suggestions that many of you on here are throwing out there as replacements, and he will not cost any prospects or extra money.

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
8:07 am

I hope Schafer can beat out McLouth for CF in spring training. But this is the 3rd year he was supposed to break out and become a major league starter…

CJ

December 8th, 2010
8:08 am

I don’t quite understand why so many people still have faith in Schafer, lets only focus on the 52 games played at Gwinnett last year, batted .201, hit 1 homer stole 9 bases but was caught 8 times.You can add in the 6 games at Rome and 18 and Miss. but they are just as bad. I’m looking at the games he played towards the end when his wrist was “healthy”. The only proven reliability that he has shown to me was defensively. He is horrendous on offense, will NOT be a starter (wish we would have traded him when his value peaked), BUT can be brought in as a defensive replacement-just don’t know if the Braves would waste a spot on him.

I understand injuries can have lasting effects and take time to heal-this is not one of those cases and that cannot be an excuse for Schafer anymore.

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
8:21 am

If Chipper returns healthy and if Mclouth regains his stroke the Braves look good. If not they look really bad. No other way to put it.

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
8:23 am

Braves need .300 28 100 from Chipper and .280 20 80 from CF (McOut). I somehow see Chipper returning and starting off hot then pulling an oblique followed by turf toe…

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
8:25 am

Its just amazing that Wren & the Braves will allow their success or failure to depend on a 40 year-old oft-injured 3B (HOF no doubt) and a CF that was sent to the minors last year “Lost In Space” at the plate…

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
8:36 am

“I don’t quite understand why so many people still have faith in Schafer”

Because he has not shown any reason not to have faith in him

“lets only focus on the 52 games played at Gwinnett last year”

While he was still recovering from injury

“You can add in the 6 games at Rome and 18 and Miss. but they are just as bad.”

See above

“I’m looking at the games he played towards the end when his wrist was “healthy”. ”

Why would you put healthy in quotations? Are you insinuating he was not actually injured? You do understand, I hope, that after an injury that takes an entire year to recover from, there will naturally be a period of adjustment to get timing back, etc.

“He is horrendous on offense, will NOT be a starter ”

Although you have made the declaration, I am willing to wait until someone actually associated with Braves management makes the decision. Oh, and yes, I guess you can say that he is horrendous on offense…WHILE INJURED.

“I understand injuries can have lasting effects and take time to heal-this is not one of those cases and that cannot be an excuse for Schafer anymore.”

Says who? You admit injuries take time to heal but refuse to allow Schafer time to heal from an injury? Or are you again hinting that you think he wasn’t injured?

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
8:38 am

Wow, shamrock. From cautiously optimistic to totally unrealistically pessimistic in three consecutive posts.

Milt Famey

December 8th, 2010
8:38 am

Quit beating on Schafer. Have any of you CRITICS ever tried to play sports while injured or rehabbing? Jeff Porter told Schafer in Sept 2009 that it would be a year before he would be 100%. Cut the guy some slack. Remember that in the spring of 2008, before the injury, he was considered “one of the best players on the field” by real baseball people.

sidslidkid

December 8th, 2010
8:39 am

“If Chipper returns healthy and if Mclouth regains his stroke the Braves look good. If not they look really bad. No other way to put it.”

or… Chipper is banged up like he was last year, McLouth struggles like he did last year and we still go to the playoffs…. like we did last year.

Huh, I guess there is another way to put it.

CJ

December 8th, 2010
8:39 am

I somewhat agree with you Shamrock, while I think its possible both Chipper and McLouth can attain these stats I see your scenario happening. Chipper has a nice season but is injured-McLouth stays streaky and continues you golf swing for the fences. But I don’t think we are relying on either of these players. It would just be a nice bonus if both or just one came back to life and stayed healthy. The way it looks like they’re setting up the team would be additions that would stop the bleeding when one or both of these players went down. The trading isn’t finished yet.

Let alone if Chipper does go down for the year at any point Wren makes a nice trade. I think the team looks very good even without Chipper/McLouth. IMO.

David O'Brien

December 8th, 2010
8:39 am

ramblingman on a roll at 8:36 a.m. Quite thorough, yet succinct at same time.

David O'Brien

December 8th, 2010
8:42 am

Shamrock Lucky: So you say the Braves “need” an approximate combined .290 average with 48 homers and 180 RBI from Chipper and McLouth. Based on…?

Milt Famey

December 8th, 2010
8:45 am

@Shamrock, I’m sorry, I didn’t realize that you are a doctor and have no doubt examined J Schafer based on your post that “injuries take time to heal-this is not one of those cases”

K with a K

December 8th, 2010
8:45 am

Man I did forget Ross earlier…Shamrock Luckey, Chipper is not going to get those numbers IMO, and IMO I don’t think we need him to. We won 91 games last year with out that from him and that was before we added Uggla. I think Chipper hits for a high avg around 290-300 and some pop maybe 15-20 HR. Plus Wren is in a good spot we have not lost any of our top prospects this offseason so if Spring Training roles around and Chipper is not going to be able to come back or during the season Chipper or McLouth are not pulling thier weight the Braves can make a move.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
8:46 am

Okay, shamrock, let’s look at your third post. You say the Braves are allowing their success or failure to depend on Chipper and McLouth. Let’s examine that.

The following items are factual and not in dispute.

The Braves are on a budget, just like every other single sports team in existence.
Chipper and McLouth have contracts with the Braves that guarantee them a specified amount of money.
If the Braves tried to trade Chipper, they would run into a storm of protest from actual fans, plus Chipper has 10/5 status and would most likely reject any trade.
If the Braves tried to trade McLouth, who would take him, without making the Braves pay his salary, which would not exactly resolve anything?
If the Braves cut McLouth, they still pay him. Again, problem still remains.

So, now that is out of the way, tell us what your solution to the problem is. Go ahead. You complain about the problem like you have the answer. What is your solution? Who should the Braves get to replace these two, and how are they going to pay for them? Go ahead and dazzle us with your solution.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
8:48 am

CJ

December 8th, 2010
8:49 am

“Because he has not shown any reason not to have faith in him”

6 seasons in the minors with a career .258 BA, not batting above .229 above AA, 58% SB success – a homer in only every 50 PA and 5 nice games in the majors does not equate to having faith in a player.

“While he was still recovering from injury”

He states he was healthy when playing with Gwinnett.

“Why would you put healthy in quotations? Are you insinuating he was not actually injured? You do understand, I hope, that after an injury that takes an entire year to recover from, there will naturally be a period of adjustment to get timing back, etc.”

The quotations are that all his woes are b/c of his wrist injury, HGH has affected many players play also.

“Although you have made the declaration, I am willing to wait until someone actually associated with Braves management makes the decision. Oh, and yes, I guess you can say that he is horrendous on offense…WHILE INJURED.”

Only time will tell.

“Says who? You admit injuries take time to heal but refuse to allow Schafer time to heal from an injury? Or are you again hinting that you think he wasn’t injured?”

See above.

Ted M

December 8th, 2010
9:07 am

Your hands and wrists are probably the most important things for a hitter.

I’m glad the Braves are being patient.

Doug

December 8th, 2010
9:14 am

C.J.: Can you simply not read? He says nowhere that he was healthy while at Gwinnett…in fact he states the exact opposite; that for the first time in two years he feels “normal”. Again…the Braves training staff TOLD him that he would not be back…really..until September of 2010. Welll…..April-August of 2010 occur BEFORE September. Do you have any remote clue what impact an injured-weakened wrist would have on trying to hit a baseball?? And…yet again…were all those folks who raved about his skill set…delusional…Schafer acolytes…or just plain stupid???

ryan c

December 8th, 2010
9:33 am

ok, so he was injured. can you explain these 3 things that have nothing to do with his injury?
1. why he struck out 1 time every 5 at-bats pre-injury
2. how he’s never had the ability to hit lhp
3. how, even though he’s supposedly “fast”, why he only steals at a 58% rate (which he’d be better off if he didnt try to steal at all).

i hope he does well, but let’s get real: his 1 1/2 good years of .865ish OPS was good, but not great, and that’s all he’s proved (unless you take into account spring training fastballs, which i dont).

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
9:40 am

Chipper’s career numbers are average what I posted .300 28 100
If you look at other team’s CF you get production.

I don’t want the Braves to trade Chipper multi-posting moron, I want a good CF instead of Nate. I want Chipper to be healthy is all.

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
9:42 am

My solution is to trade McLouth and a few young pitchers for a real CF.

Shamrock Lucky

December 8th, 2010
9:43 am

Get Lowe,Hudson,or Chipper to restructure their contracts to free up some money to get a real CF (if they really want to win) ?

Jesse Stone

December 8th, 2010
9:46 am

Jordan Schafer had ONE good year, 2007. Look up his stats. Nothing good before 2007, nothing good after.

ryan c

December 8th, 2010
9:50 am

Shamrock, I’m not trying to tear you down, but hear me out…
You’re totally contradicting yourself when you say you want Schafer to beat out McLouth. Sure, Nate was awful last year, but Jordan has been worse at a much lower level of competition. Expecting Jordan Schafer to outproduce Nate in CF, when Nate had 3 full years of an .820 OPS is extremely wishful thinking (prior to last year).

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
9:51 am

CJ – okay, we get it, you insinuate that Schafer’s problems are due to HGH. As you yourself say, time will tell. Now be so kind as to allow him that time without slamming him before Spring Training even starts.

Shamrock – Who are you going to trade McLouth to? Remember, this needs to be someone who will take him and most of his salary, so we can still afford whoever we are getting to replace him. Oh, and look up irony before you call someone else a “multi-posting moron”. Just saying…

gainer

December 8th, 2010
10:03 am

I look forward to the day when Schafer starts hitting and becomes a good major league hitter whether its with the braves or another team and then all these people that hate him will be singing his praises or will be pissed that we got rid of him. Give the kid time to get healthy in AAA and if he still sucks then we at least we gave him a chance to get healthy and try to show us what he can do.

Curt

December 8th, 2010
10:04 am

I will admit that Nate McClouth has frustrated me at times. Since he has been with the Braves he has had the tendency to swing at bad pitches and too often swings at the first pitch. Major league pitchers have gotten the best of him by pitching into his tendencies and causing him to look bad.

On the defensive side, Nate does not have a great arm and does not look real instinctive on when and where to throw.

All this said, you need to look at Nate’s history, especially 2008 to know that he has some potential. You can also look back to last year when he came back from Gwinett. After working at Gwinett and also getting some advice from Chipper, Nate seemed to be the hitter that he was in 2008.

To me, Nate’s biggest asset is his speed and base stealing ability. If Nate can get on base and Gonzalez plays a speed game, Nate could be a valuable part of the Braves.

The fact is that with his salary, Nate is going to have the opportunity succeed or fail with the Braves. One can hope that 2008 was the norm and not the aberration.

Ted M

December 8th, 2010
10:06 am

McLouth is untradeable. No one would want him. I don’t get it; how could people not realize that?

E-6

December 8th, 2010
10:07 am

Who cares if it’s Schafer or McClouth wins the battle in CF – just so they produce something. Oh and one slight correction on the Tigers/midget story. The pitcher was Bob Cain not Ray Herbert. I remember junk like that but forget where I put my cell phone.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
10:09 am

Ryan C – I won’t go back and go through all his stats in the minors, but I will rely on lots of people throughout baseball who know a lot more than you or I do about these things, including a lot on the Braves staff, who have had lots of great things to say about Schafer. He has had a lot of people in his corner since before he was drafted.

I am on record as saying I saw him in AA, before the injury, just after his return from the suspension. I was not that impressed but it could have been a case of being rusty from a 50 game layoff. I felt he was trying to do too much to live up to the hype instead of relaxing and playing his game (Francoeuritis), But, I am quite willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and let him prove himself now that he is healthy again. It sounds like he got his head on straight finally. He could be a nice surprise. He doesn’t have to be that great to be a productive player for the Braves.

I think between him, McLouth, and Young, the Braves could find their CF, and if they go into ST without adding another to the mix, I’d be okay with that. I think those who are trying to bury either Nate or Jordan or both are premature and need to ease up.

Oh, and as an aside to CJ – I have never heard of HGH affecting players in any way that Schafer exhibited. HGH has been used to help people recover from injuries quicker. There has never been any proof that he used HGH, only that he associated with those who did.

Ted M

December 8th, 2010
10:10 am

I hope McLouth bounces back. If he hits .265 to .275 with 12 or 14 hrs woo hoo way to go Nate.

We’ll get a chance to see in the first few weeks of the season.

1234

December 8th, 2010
10:18 am

Never been any proof that he used HGH…..then why was he given 50 days off..just for fun? Why was he told not to talk about it? No proof that the public got to see. They don’t punish you for nothing.

Branch Rickey

December 8th, 2010
10:19 am

Steroids betrayed Schafer & McLouth. Look how ineffective they’ve been at the plate. “Injuries” and deflated stats are a usual sign of withdrawal.

Let the dreamers keep deaming. Wren needs to find a centerfielder !

Jesse Stone

December 8th, 2010
10:19 am

re: Gainer @10:03. I don’t know of anyone that “hates” Schafer, but several are scratching their heads as to why this guy has such a loyal following for someone that has done so little. Of course Braves brass are saying good things about him. You don’t hear of front office people or coaches in this organization slamming players in the media. Too classy and it diminishes trade value.

Doug

December 8th, 2010
10:23 am

Well, I don’t think anyone is saying that he is an all-star…just give him some time…to answer your query:
1. because he tended to strike out alot
2. lots of young LH hitters have trouble hitting leftiies
3. because he had not fully mastered the “art” of stealing bases

Jesse Stone

December 8th, 2010
10:25 am

Doug, All those things you listed add up to career minor leaguer, or future Adult League Baseball star.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
10:26 am

1234 – You can spin it anway you want, there is no proof he used HGH. He was suspended for associated with others who used. I have never said categorically he did not use them, but others are dead wrong when they state categorically that he did. He has not had any accusations against him either before or after that one time.

Branch – you need to look up the difference between steroids and HGH. You are hearing wild accusations and changing them to buffer what you want to believe.

Jesse Stone – I don’t think it’s a case of loyal followers. Rather, I think it’s a case of those willing to give the kid a chance reacting to those who slam the kid before he can have a chance to show he’s recovered from the injury. That is what is head scratching worthy to me.

1234

December 8th, 2010
10:28 am

agree Branch, & J Stone.
Doug..give him some time…he’s had 2-3 years, how much more u need.

mudcat

December 8th, 2010
10:30 am

Minor could have a breakout season this coming season. No way I’d trade him. It would make more sense to go to spring training, see what we have and what we need, then make any necessary changes. Be patient!

[...] to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, chatter emerging from the Winter Meetings yesterday suggest [...]

Curt

December 8th, 2010
10:38 am

Right now, the Braves have at least 3 options for CF. McClouth, Shaefer and Young. While none of these are top of the line seasoned professionals I believe that unless the Braves happen upon the right deal for the right player, they are going to start spring training with exactly these 3 players.

The “right deal for the right player” means not mortgaging the future. Giving up the likes of Mike Minor or other pitchers with potential is mortgaging the future. I am glad that Wren and company thinks things through when seeking to fill holes (ok for the most part they do).

1234

December 8th, 2010
10:50 am

I don’t hate Schafer. I wish the kid luck. But the media and bloggers make out like he is “the O’Mighty” until he proves himself on a longer term base give it a break. How many time have the fans heard the “super star” crap and the kids a one year wonder, falls on his face. Do it 1st then talk.

ryan c

December 8th, 2010
10:50 am

Let’s get something straight, no one “hates” schafer. It’s immature to suggest so. There are people that don’t have the same viewpoints concerning Schafer. I don’t think he’s ever been that good. Does that make me evil?

I was at Spring Training for 4 games the year he broke out and I was sold. However, a much wiser follower of the Braves told me to not buy into the hype just yet because Spring Training is exactly that…Training, for young pitchers, for old pitchers, and for hitters. Pre-Spring, Jordan had been working hard and was in top physical shape. He had purchased the 100,000 dollar simulated MLB pitcher pitching machine and was season-ready when everyone else was still “Training”. It showed. Along with stellar defense, he looked to be the complete player. He still had huge holes in his game, but for a month and a half, those holes were overshadowed by his “head and shoulders above everyone else” play.

Is it too much to admit that most Pro-Schafer fans use that month of spring, the first week of his MLB career, and 1 1/2 seasons in the minors to lean on and completely ignore how blindingly awful he’s been at other times?

He needs to re-establish his value. Not as a major leaguer, but as a minor leaguer.

Branch Rickey

December 8th, 2010
11:01 am

Schafer has photos of Frank Wren in the shower.

How else does he get another shot. He hit .201 in three different minor league towns last season.

We cannot go another season with non-production coming from CF !

1234

December 8th, 2010
11:04 am

I like the players we have. Give Young and Lucas a chance and the other three kid we got as Mi-L fa. You may be surprised.

Pena going to Cubs.

Uknowme

December 8th, 2010
11:09 am

These are the facts:
1. Schafer will show what he can do at spring training.
2. Mclouth will show what he can do at spring training.
3. Chipper will show what he can do at spring training.
4. Fredi and Frank will determine if they will fit in.
5. Anything offered by anyone not in charge of the team is a useless waste of time.
6. We should shut up till late in spring training or early in the season.
7. I hereby shut up until then.

AdirondackDave

December 8th, 2010
11:11 am

Ryan C. — You may be right about Schafer but if he has another very strong spring like ‘09 when he was the best player on the team, how in the world do you send him to Gwinnett again? Especially if McLouth and Young are putting up modest numbers and playing inferior defense? The guy is a game winner when he’s right. I say keep the competition open and let’s see what Frank and Freddi decide at the end of ST. They know more about the CF situation than the rest of us combined, probably by a fact or 10.

Ted M

December 8th, 2010
11:11 am

WOW what a bargain!

The Chicago White Sox agreed to a three-year, $37.5 million deal with free agent first baseman Paul Konerko on Wednesday, according to a league source.

Konerko, who will be 35 on Opening Day, is coming off one of his best seasons, batting .312 with 39 home runs and 111 RBIs.

Chuck

December 8th, 2010
11:13 am

Congratulations to Diaz on his $4.2M, 2-yr contract! Will he play every day there? I hope Matty comes to town and smacks one!

1234

December 8th, 2010
11:19 am

we should shut up! >>>>you sound like the govt we have.

sometimes ST is not a good show of what one can do.. u could have a bad 8 weeks but be a very good player. Good 8 weeks and be a bad player. Thats a short time to judge.

USAF Retired

December 8th, 2010
11:24 am

Yeah…but just one..with no one on base.

1234

December 8th, 2010
11:29 am

Adirondack…do u believe one is going to shine and two is going to flop..thats what u said.
Again u see the Super star kid..example……Young and Nate playing inferior defense. WOW! What makes you believe JS is going to Shine after 2 years of nothing.

1234

December 8th, 2010
11:32 am

USAF retired..thanks for your service…men like you are what makes America great. Thanks Again.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
11:42 am

1234 – how much time? Well, he was on track and moving up and getting rave reviews from lots of talent evaluators, not just from the Braves (so this was not just someone pumping up his trade value). He was almost universally recognized as a very good prospect. He was right on track for making the majors and actually did make the team when the injury happened. If we negate the time lost to injury, then he would be right on track for making the majors again. So, how about we give him spring training and, unless he completely flops, a few weeks at least in the majors to show us what he’s got.

ramblingman

December 8th, 2010
11:51 am

Ryan c – the person using “hate” when talking about Schafer seems to be you. Other than one post that you replied to, and then felt the need to reply to again later. Don’t get defensive. It’s just as immature to keep suggesting that everyone is calling you a hater when they are not. You are not evil, and neither is Schafer. Those who want to give him a chance are not blinded and completely ignoring anything, and he was not “blindingly awful” no matter how you want it to be true. The worst he has been was when he was injured, and you should admit that. Stats from playing while injured are not a good basis on judging someone’s talent. That is all we are saying.

This is coming down to two sides – those who are willing to give Schafer (and McLouth) a chance and those who are not. The side not willing is the more exreme side based on their posts. The majority of the side willing to give them a chance are saying pretty much the same thing – give him a chance. That’s not asking for too much. And it’s not declaring him the almighty or proclaiming him a superstar to ask that he be given a chance, 1234.

Branch, you are just a troll.

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