Beachy sharp, Heyward sore, welcome to Jupiter

JUPITER, Fla. – We’re coming to you from a place that has nothing to do with what Earth, Wind & Fire sang about, and we’re way behind and not going to take much time to get this blog out.

We’ll keep it brief, because a 2-1/2-hour drive, followed by a ‘B’  game on a backfield and watching some batting practice on the main field, doesn’t leave a whole lot of time for, ahem, composing.

Heyward has missed two games with sore back, which was sore again Monday morning after a swing in batting practice.

Heyward has missed two games with sore back, which was sore again Monday morning after a swing in batting practice.

The facts you need to know: Jason Heyward is out of the lineup again today with his sore lower back. He’s missed two games in a row with the ailment, after having a regularly scheduled day off Saturday, which is when the back first stiffened on him.

Heyward had hoped to play today, had planned to, but it was still tight after the bus ride down, and just as he was beginning to get it loose, here’s what happened:

I was at the cage to watch him take BP while ago, and he said he’d let me know after he finished how he felt (there was still a chance he’d play at that point).

About 45 seconds after he said that, on maybe the third or fourth swing of his third round in the cage, he felt it pinch and nearly dropped his bat. That was all for the day, in terms of him hitting.

“All was well until that swing,” he said after coming out of the cage. “This is not the time to push it.”

He said there’s a “great chance” he’ll play tomorrow, when the Braves face these Cardinals for the second time in two days (they stay here overnight tonight, their only overnight trip of the spring, same as every spring).

If it was the regular season, Heyward reiterated that he’d play.

“It’s uncomfortable, for sure, but in the season you’re making it work,” he said, meaning you play with such nagging injuries when the games count.

A long, early morning bus ride never helps much when you’re 6-foot-5 and dealing with back tightness.

“I got up and walked around every 30 minutes,” Heyward said. “But other than that, it is what it is.”

What it is is cramped, even the high-end buses that the Braves charter for their trips around Florida in spring training.

On the way off the field, I asked Fredi Gonzalez if he’s at all concerned about Heyward. The first-year Braves manager said he was not. He knows there are probably going to be nagging injuries, aches and pains, for his strapping right fielder.

I also mentioned that it must be a bit like owning a Ferrari.

“What the trainers have told me and Bobby [Cox] has told me, those Ferraris, like you say, are a little temperamental, their bodies,” Gonzalez said. “Right now, it’s March 15. You rest. If he plays, maybe it becomes more a problem.”

BRAVES LINEUP for ‘A’ game

  1. Prado LF
  2. McLouth CF
  3. Chipper 3B
  4. Uggla 2B
  5. Freeman 1B
  6. Gonzalez SS
  7. Ross C
  8. Clevlen RF
  9. Minor LH

♣ Beachy brings it on backfield : Brandon Beachy brought his ‘A’ stuff to the ‘B’ game this morning. (OK, it’s spring training, we’re just getting our work in like the players, so I had to use that easy one once).

braves_1002_CC16_835344l

Beachy had seven strikeouts in five scoreless innings of Monday morning 'B' game.

But really, he was impressive. In the Braves’ 3-0, six-inning win, Beachy limited the Cards to two hits and one walk with seven strikeouts in five innings.

Ex-Cardinal Joe Mather hit a long home run over the left-center fence for the Bravos against a team comprised of many of his former Triple-A Lousville teammates, one day after fourth-outfield hopeful Wilkin Ramirez drove a ball off the batter’s eye beyond center field at Dark Star.

Beachy, with pal (and fellow 5th-starter candidate) Mike Minor looking on from a left-field foul territory vantage point a few feet from me (and from GM Frank Wren and asst. GM Bruce Manno), was pretty much dominant against the Cardinals.

“I thought he was outstanding,” Gonzalez said. “Command was good. Breaking ball was nasty. Punched out seven, and he got himself out of a man-on-third, nobody-out jam in a one-run game.”

Beachy got out of that one early jam with a groundout to short, a strikeout and another groundout.

Fifth-starter longshot Rodrigo Lopez pitched  a simulated game back at Lake Buena Vista this morning. His line:  5 innings,  6 hits, 2 runs, 7 strikeouts.

Now we’ll watch Minor do his thing in the regularly scheduled game against the Cards on the main field at Roger Dean Stadium. It’s a perfect day, temps in the 70s and sunny, breezy.

Wish you were here.

Actually, wish you could’ve driven my rented Camry down here, then I could have got a couple more hours of sleep. But we got through, with coffee, Bruce Springsteen’s Darkness On The Edge of Town, Willie Dixon’s I Am The Blues, and the second disc of Jamey Johnson’s The Guitar Song.

Let’s close with the title cut from the aforementioned masterpiece by The Boss, and you can watch him do it live in typical riveting style here (you gotta check out this video).

bruce_springsteen_shirtless

“DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN” by Bruce Springsteen

They’re still racing out at the Trestles,
But that blood it never burned in her veins,
Now I hear she’s got a house up in Fairview,
And a style she’s trying to maintain.
Well, if she wants to see me,
You can tell her that I’m easily found,
Tell her there’s a spot out ‘neath Abram’s Bridge,
And tell her, there’s a darkness on the edge of town.

Everybody’s got a secret, Sonny,
Something that they just can’t face,
Some folks spend their whole lives trying to keep it,
They carry it with them every step that they take.
Till some day they just cut it loose
Cut it loose or let it drag ‘em down,
Where no one asks any questions,
or looks too long in your face,
In the darkness on the edge of town.

Some folks are born into a good life,
Other folks get it anyway, anyhow,
I lost my money and I lost my wife,
Them things don’t seem to matter much to me now.
Tonight I’ll be on that hill ’cause I can’t stop,
I’ll be on that hill with everything I got,
Lives on the line where dreams are found and lost,
I’ll be there on time and I’ll pay the cost,
For wanting things that can only be found
In the darkness on the edge of town.

994 comments Add your comment

wheelz007

March 14th, 2011
1:08 pm

Thanks for the new blog DOB.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:10 pm

Chipper flied out to LF warning track to end 1st inning (he was hitting some lasers in BP)

Jimmy

March 14th, 2011
1:11 pm

Yeah, thanks DOB.

TennesseePaul

March 14th, 2011
1:13 pm

Thank you for the work DOB.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:13 pm

Lopez’ line from simulated game back at Orlando: 5.0 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 7 strikeouts.

rammerjammer

March 14th, 2011
1:14 pm

If Heyward’s a Ferrari, what’s Uggla?

T DUB

March 14th, 2011
1:14 pm

ncscoots

March 14th, 2011
1:16 pm

If Heyward’s a Ferrari, what’s Uggla?

Monster Truck.

wheelz007

March 14th, 2011
1:17 pm

It sure looks like we’ve got some pitching. I’m excited about all these guys…

Lowe finished strong last year and it looks like he’s picked up where he left off.

JJ seems to be healthy and has started strong this spring.

Huddy looks strong so far.

Hanson’s had a good spring too.

Beachy/Minor/Lopez have all had good outtings.

I know it’s only spring, but these guys have me pretty excited.

ColoradoBravesFan

March 14th, 2011
1:17 pm

Does any know if there is a internet radio feed for todays game?

shmoe

March 14th, 2011
1:17 pm

sounds like Mike better have his “A” game for the “A” game or he will be singing his songs in minor.

Mark (another one)

March 14th, 2011
1:18 pm

A Peterbilt.

baxter my little gentleman

March 14th, 2011
1:18 pm

braves radio brass is hammering blue on giving pujols the call on the outside of the plate to run the count full before he grounded out to hoss

StingerSplash

March 14th, 2011
1:21 pm

Great damn call on the song o’ the blog, Mr. O’Brien. I guess all of Bruce’s “hunh”s as the guitar solo cranks in are a little difficult to write in. Regardless, fine damn work.
Rammerjammer, I consider Uggla like my GMC pickup truck. Ain’t much to look at but will get the job done. May rattle at a stoplight and be balky to start but when it gets cruising, even Johnny Law better watch out.

Mark in Madison

March 14th, 2011
1:22 pm

“sounds like Mike better have his “A” game for the “A” game or he will be singing his songs in minor.”

Boooo.

baxter my little gentleman

March 14th, 2011
1:22 pm

booo this man

baxter my little gentleman

March 14th, 2011
1:23 pm

back to back strikeouts for uggs and FF

shmoe

March 14th, 2011
1:24 pm

hahaha

“booo this man”

tough crowd. tough, tough crowd.

Patrick

March 14th, 2011
1:25 pm

Uggla-Hummer, the one kind, not the frilly new ones

ncscoots

March 14th, 2011
1:25 pm

How many dang Ks does Beachy have this spring, anyway? My impression is that he’s had high strikeout totals nearly every time out.

Patrick

March 14th, 2011
1:25 pm

Uggla-Hummer, the old kind, not the frilly new ones

USMC DAWG

March 14th, 2011
1:26 pm

Sounds like Heyward is already a graduate of the “Chipper school of cramps and sores”.

shmoe

March 14th, 2011
1:27 pm

uggla is a lot more subtle than a Hummer. McGwire was a Hummer.

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
1:27 pm

Lets go Braves!!!!

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
1:29 pm

Holliday doubles.

flange1

March 14th, 2011
1:30 pm

Must say that I am impressed with Braves pitching this spring.

7 Starters are pitching pretty well and the entire pen is throwing well. (those that will make the ML team and those that won’t!)

Not sure I can remember a year when everyone has pitched as well as this year.

Braves should be stocked with pitchers at the Major League level and Gwinnett should have a decent roster as well.

And that does not even count the 3 flame throwers at AA (I think that is where Tehheran, Delgado and AV will start the year)

Thinks looking UP for Braves ans!

Corky Miller's Beer Gut

March 14th, 2011
1:32 pm

kk is going to pitch after minor today..thats interesting

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
1:33 pm

Rasmus walks. 2 on and 1 out.

McFann Ô Ô

March 14th, 2011
1:33 pm

Thanks for the new Blog, Chief!

Shaun But is it any more likely than… McCann regressing?

There’s that danged word again…what’s up with that?

timthebrave

March 14th, 2011
1:35 pm

bought some new cd’s this weekend. New Drive by Truckers, REM, Iron and Wine, and Raekwon shaolin vs wu tang. Also bought the new 2011 The Show. It’s really cool seeing Heyward, Uggla and Freeman in the lineup. Good weekend but I really could have used that extra hour of sleep

Bruce's Pearl

March 14th, 2011
1:37 pm

Kawakami scheduled to pitch next,possible audition?

JC from DR!

March 14th, 2011
1:38 pm

Minor definitely needs more seasoning in the minors.

Minors for Minor.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:39 pm

Cardinals have ‘em loaded w/ 2 out in 2nd, a single and two walks this inning (walked No. 8 hitter Schumaker w/ 2 out, brings up Lohse…)

bascogcjs

March 14th, 2011
1:39 pm

In Heyward’s career so far, he sure has had a lot of nagging injuries including
his minor league days. For a guy so young, this is not a good sign.
I can assure you some people are just injury prone and this appears to be the case
with Jason. I doubt he’ll ever play 150 games a season consistently.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:39 pm

Lohse lined out to CF, nearly got it deep enough for damage.

woman in the throes

March 14th, 2011
1:41 pm

Methinks you wouldn’t treat a Ferrari the way J-Hay treats that superb body with his flat out play.

bravesgrl4life

March 14th, 2011
1:41 pm

Lucky for Minor for that line out.

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
1:41 pm

Got out of that inning without damage.

Rowland Office Worker

March 14th, 2011
1:43 pm

Really starting to worry about Heyward’s “nagging” injuries. He struggled with them during his whole minor league career. Hope it is not a trend that he will struggle with his whole major league career too.

DaveInDallas(NC)

March 14th, 2011
1:43 pm

DOB, sounds like maybe Wilkin Ramirez might have surged ahead a little in the fourth outfielder battle. What do you think?

ncscoots

March 14th, 2011
1:43 pm

Methinks you wouldn’t treat a Ferrari the way J-Hay treats that superb body with his flat out play.

If you’re gonna little-old-lady a Ferrari, what’s the good in having that sucker in the first place, LOL? Go fast, go hard, listen for sirens receding in the distance, I say.

Patrick

March 14th, 2011
1:44 pm

At this point DOB, who-in your opinion-has the edge for the 5th spot in the rotation?

TennesseePaul

March 14th, 2011
1:45 pm

Lopez’ line from simulated game back at Orlando: 5.0 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 7 strikeouts.

Simulated suckitude from Longshot Lopez.

JC from DR!

March 14th, 2011
1:45 pm

Send Heyward to some chiropractor or something…

Runnin

March 14th, 2011
1:46 pm

Leo is a little annoying as an announcer.

ncscoots

March 14th, 2011
1:46 pm

He struggled with them during his whole minor league career.

Huh? I can remember exactly two problems that caused him to miss games, and even that was precautionary.

Bat Masterson

March 14th, 2011
1:46 pm

Does anyone have a working radio link?

DaveInDallas(NC)

March 14th, 2011
1:46 pm

Wilkin Ramirez, Eric Hinske, Joe Mather, David Ross and (blink, blink) Diory Hernandez on the bench this season? I wish they had Omar Infante. What would it take to get him from Florida?

Corky Miller's Beer Gut

March 14th, 2011
1:48 pm

runnin at least he is not overly pc like most former players and managers

Duke

March 14th, 2011
1:48 pm

DOB, I wanted to ask this the other day, but for got about it. What are the chances the Braves could groom Minor into a reliever? His stuff is good, but just not consistent enough throughout an entire game. With his high strikeout rate; I think he would be well served to come out of the pen for us.

cricket

March 14th, 2011
1:49 pm

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:50 pm

Duke, I don’t see that happening. Minor has more value as a starter, for the near and long term.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
1:51 pm

Patrick, right now it seems pretty even between Minor and Beachy, but if I had to guess right now, I’d say Beachy. But that could change quickly, and I don’t say it with much conviction to begin with.

Largo

March 14th, 2011
1:52 pm

Who will be OUT of the lineup more this year, Chipper or Heyward?

also ashley

March 14th, 2011
1:53 pm

Largo, right now I’m betting Heyward.

TennesseePaul

March 14th, 2011
1:53 pm

I can remember exactly two problems that caused him to miss games, and even that was precautionary.

I see this as the issue. So far Heyward has had one injury that required the DL. But recollection holds that he has repeated nags/dings/pulls/discomforts/etc which appear quiet frequently and are either a) merely mentioned or b) getting him out of a game before an off-day. I would bet he has the same amount of physical ailments as most other players. His appear to be more amplified because he is Jason Heyward and not Ed Lucas. The solution seems rather simple. Once the season starts don’t mention it. If he does get ding-up and needs a day off, simply say, “just giving the kid a rest” no need for the details from Gonzalez unless he just likes to make the MIB/DOB Blog squirm. If it is something serious (Kid cracks his skull running into McLouth), then talk about it… there would be a whole bank full of “revenge” stories in line.

baxter my little gentleman

March 14th, 2011
1:54 pm

wait, you’re betting heyward misses more games than chip?
how much a bet we talkin b/c id take that all day.
no way oldman plays more than heyward

Jimmy, age 9

March 14th, 2011
1:56 pm

How is Jordan Schafer doing? Will he make the team?

NORRIS

March 14th, 2011
1:56 pm

Yep. Mather is lighting it up. got 4 hits now on the spring.
Can anyone say NORTON.

justin1

March 14th, 2011
1:57 pm

See. Everyone chastises me everytime I say something about Heyward being injury prone. These kinds of stories come out every other week. He is a good baseball player. No doubt about it. But I think he will be on the DL quite a bit throughout his career.

bravesgrl4life

March 14th, 2011
1:58 pm

Pitchers’ duel today, huh?

justin1

March 14th, 2011
1:58 pm

Heyward will collect more ass splinters this year than XBH

Duke

March 14th, 2011
1:59 pm

DOB, I understand that. It seems like they would at least give him more time starting before they were to even consider that. Especially since they selected him with the 7th overall pick. Just a thought with him being a lefty in this division and his high strikeout ability.

Runnin

March 14th, 2011
1:59 pm

Cork, one person’s professional on air discretion is another’s overly pc. I prefer the discretion. Leo does well when he keeps his comments to the game, instead of talking too much about himself. He needs to lose the giggling too.

hbcuclassics

March 14th, 2011
2:00 pm

FVSU’s Ricardo Lockette ran the 40-yard dash in 4.37 seconds and he bench pressed 225 pounds 22 times today at his campus Pro Day workout, according to a league source.

.hbcuclassics.com

MFin04

March 14th, 2011
2:00 pm

Heyward’s consistent injuries at such a young age are quite concerning…

baxter my little gentleman

March 14th, 2011
2:00 pm

heyward playd over 140 games last yr
chipper has done that once since 04
just sayin

Heisenberg

March 14th, 2011
2:01 pm

You know what they say about high end sports cars……buy 2 because 1 is always in the shop. So who will be the 2nd sports car?

MaSSaHH

March 14th, 2011
2:02 pm

DOB: if some scout discovered a talent that is 35 years old and he makes it to the bigs, does he also has to pass the 6 years of mlb services to become a free agent?

Just Pat

March 14th, 2011
2:03 pm

What happened to the PBP? Please don’t tell me it’s being posted on the OTHER bog……:-(

justin1

March 14th, 2011
2:03 pm

MFin04…consistent injuries, ay?

Very enlightening

ncscoots

March 14th, 2011
2:04 pm

I would bet he has the same amount of physical ailments as most other players.

Too late for sanity, now. The idea that he’s fragile seems to have taken root with some here. Next thing you know, they’ll say he was born in Kenya or something.

For the record: the kid had a hip flexor and a jammed heel that cost him games in 2009; a strained glute (or back spasms, or something, I don’t remember) that cut short his AFL season; and the thumb last year. Those are significant, because they cut into his playing time.

In addition, he’s had shin splints, maybe a groin tweak or two, and a sore back in ST, and who knows what else…the kind of things that come from playing a professional sport every day for six or eight months, and which impact hardly at all on his ability to go to the post.

Sheesh.

Just Pat

March 14th, 2011
2:04 pm

errrr….bLog

Jerry Blooger

March 14th, 2011
2:05 pm

score please

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
2:06 pm

Pitchers game here.

Dennis Reynolds

March 14th, 2011
2:06 pm

Heyward’s 2011 line just in:

.285/.385/.560
16 HRs
32 Doubles
49 Splinters

Just Pat

March 14th, 2011
2:07 pm

scoots

Kenya??? LOL

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
2:07 pm

Dan Uggla’s leadoff single in 5th is first hit for Bravos today against Lohse

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:07 pm

Just Pat …
Top of the fifth. Lohse for the Cardinals has set down the first twelve.

Uggla just got a hit.

nique

March 14th, 2011
2:08 pm

Didn’t Heyward have some kind of weird slide recently? Is the back pain related to that? If so, someone really needs to teach him (and the rest of the team – remember Prado) how to slide without getting hurt.

Just Pat

March 14th, 2011
2:09 pm

abwright….THANKS!

MFin04

March 14th, 2011
2:09 pm

Hopefully, Heyward will have a relatively healthy year. 8)

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:10 pm

Last Spring, Heyward was trying to make the team. He played through most of the nagging things, including the shin splints.

This year, he’s pretty much ready to go. The Braves are keeping things from becoming issues that might affect performance. Let’s see how the season progresses. If Heyward is missing games for shin splints or back tweaks during the season, press the panic button.

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:11 pm

Freeman makes out. Gonzalez advances Uggla to second on a ground out.

Ross to the plate.

Braveone

March 14th, 2011
2:11 pm

From the previous blog which had 791 comments, Venice Jim led the way with 91 posts. There were 124 different poster names. Here are the Top 25:

Rank Poster Frequency

1 Venice Jim 91
2 Tomahawkin 47
3 nolie 47
4 McFann Ô Ô 43
5 cabravesfan 38
6 David O’Brien 36
7 JC from DR! 34
8 Mixxo 28
9 Lew 23
10 Ward 19
11 Nova Scotia Steve 17
12 Tomas 17
13 jeffrey d 17
14 richbrave 16
15 PTBNL 14
16 haggard 14
17 ncscoots 13
18 Pameee 12
19 Soph 12
20 Shaun 11
21 abwright 11
22 Arkansas Transplant 10
23 DAP 10
24 Jerry 8
25 tiger297 8

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:12 pm

Ross lines out to the 3B. Just misses getting the go ahead RBI. Instead, Braves retired.

Braves 0, Cardinals 0

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
2:12 pm

Dan Uggla seems to be heating up.

Hillbilly

March 14th, 2011
2:12 pm

I dream about the spotlight and the roarin’ of the people and I wonder if I’m ever gonna hear em’ sing along.

JC from DR!

March 14th, 2011
2:12 pm

MFin04 – Yeah, and Im batman. I wouldnt count on it if I were you. I was trying to be positive about the guy earlier, but the kid makes it difficult.

Hillbilly

March 14th, 2011
2:13 pm

When Jason Heyward sits on the bench, the bench gets splinters.

Dennis Reynolds

March 14th, 2011
2:13 pm

Braveone, how do you have time to do that. Why do you do that?

hmm

Jesse Stone

March 14th, 2011
2:14 pm

Braveone- Why?

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:14 pm

Minor has a two hit shut out into the bottom of the fifth. He had some early trouble but wriggled off the hook.

Schumaker at the plate for the Cards.

David O'Brien

March 14th, 2011
2:15 pm

Braves have had one baserunner in 5 innings

cadilac

March 14th, 2011
2:15 pm

who do we have pitching now?

Jerry Blooger

March 14th, 2011
2:15 pm

Thanks abwright

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:16 pm

Schumaker flies out to McNate for out #1.

Just Pat

March 14th, 2011
2:17 pm

Soooooo……we’re expecting KK after this?????

abwright

March 14th, 2011
2:17 pm

Some one strikes out for out #2.

Announcers are busier talking amongst themselves than calling the game.

BFChris26

March 14th, 2011
2:17 pm

Does someone want to win the game today?

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