11:06 pm July 4, 2011, by David O'Brien
July 5th, 201111:49 am
Joel, I to think JJ Hardy would be a good fit~~292ab- 12 homers-31 rbi- 365 obp-slg 523- ops 878..only think I don’t like about JJ is he K’s about as much as Schafer. But the facts prove he produces. He would do better not hitting lead-off, my opinion.
July 5th, 201112:01 pm
With Prado’s return eminent, where does he play? Back in LF, McLouth to CF – that is my best guess. Schafer is out – speed + no hitting=goodbye. Though I prefer him to McOut due to defense. But I suspect not in Fredi’s eyes. The unfortunate trend in Braves is to play the guys you pay. Hence, McOut, Uggla, Linebrink getting undue playing time. I also hope Uggla listens to Freeman who seems to get it. If Uggla has any pride or sense he will use the break to work on his swing, his stance, his approach – not on his muscles. Go away and work with Chipper’s dad or McCann’s brother, or someone who understands hitting. He has a shot to be the WORST HITTER IN MAJOR LEAGUE HISTORY! C’mon Dan, don’t let this happen.
July 5th, 201112:06 pm
I know the Braves are winning, thanks to their outstanding pitching…but the hitting woes will eventually catch up to this team, in a big way. Kudos to Freddie, what a wonderful year this kid is having, but the rest of the line up, with exception to Mac, is pitiful. With Prado out, and aside from FF and MAC, the highest Avg in the line up is a mediocre .256 (Chipper), followed by 230ish hitters (McClouth, Schaeffer, Heyward, and Gonzo), and a very high paid 170 hitter (Uggla) bringing up the very ugly rear…
It may be time to start thinking about a trade, or a new batting coach. Hitting 230-240 won’t get you to the playoffs….
July 5th, 201112:09 pm
Agree that the criticism of McClouth and Ramirez are out of line. McClouth has been playin’ his butt off since he came back from the DL, particularly on defense, but also at the plate…he still can’t throw a lick, but left field isn’t quite as critical as the other two.
Schafer’s no mystery…a young man with a lot of talent that’s trying to overcome a lifetime of ‘big-doggin’ it. He’s one of those that can’t get it out of his mind that ‘chicks dig the long-ball’. Unless somebody, like Chipper – cause I don’t see the coaching staff being able to get through to him – gets in his grill and lays the law down to him about his swing, he’s gonna have a lot more ‘golden sombreros’ on his record. Then his defense won’t be enough to sustain him.
I’m concerned about Prado. That staph infection stuff is not only hard to shake, it takes it’s toll on the whole body. Looks to me that he’s clearly lost weight – to be expected – and one would question just how much stamina he’ll have for the foreseeable future. Another thing, McClouth has earned that spot in left, I’m wondering if the best use of Prado when he comes back might be to alternate between spelling Chipper and sitting Uggla. Of course playing infield might be even more taxing than left, at least mentally, but I’d sure like to see it.
July 5th, 201112:12 pm
I think ccrider might work for ESPN the way he hates on Jurjiens and the Braves.
Mid Town Joe
July 5th, 201112:22 pm
You know what some of the Braves need?
All I'm Saying Is....
July 5th, 201112:28 pm
My observations from having attended the game last night:
Uggla hit the ball hard on one occasion (I know, I know an out is an out) and had a real good at bat where worked the count for a walk so there were positive signs despite his average fall further.
Heyward hit the wall in one at bat and continues to field his position well. He’s a second year player and is going through what second year players have to which is that the rest of the league has had a year to figure him out at the plate, made major changes in how they pitch him and now he must adjust to their changes.
McClouth had a good game with a running catch that saved a run and a hit.
Jordan Schafer is the one who worried me the most. He looked completely lost at the plate with 4 strikeouts and he was over-matched on every occasion appearing as if he could not hit a major league fastball. And the most disturbing part was he did not appear confident at the plate and ‘afraid’ to take pitches and work the count which is what a successful lead-off batter has to to do.
Love the outfield of Nate, Jordan, and Heyward as they can really run some line drives down turning them into long (scary) outs.
Conrad made a great play look routine when he ran in and cleanly bare-handed a bunt and threw the runner out. They need to not move him around in the field and just let him substitute at third (i.e. no more with him at second base, please).
Luong comes in as a defensive replacement for Conrad (nice move Fredi) and in a perfect example of the “the ball will find you” statement, the first batter hits him a ground ball which he handled perfectly.
McCann is so good and steady and such a smart hitter. Wow is all I can say (along with thank goodness he is one of ours). He perfectly took an outside pitch late in the count and punched it to left for a single spoiling the shift they had on.
Gonzo ripped a couple of pitches foul in his at-bats but was otherwise ineffective at the plate. We pay him primarily to field, though, and he more than did the job with that double play he turned off the line-drive.
Freddie Freeman has really come on in the last month or so. His second homer was almost more impressive than the first because he hit it while batting during a steady rain—great concentration. Freeman also had an impressive play in the field making a tough play look easy.
And “Steady” Fredi Gonzalez is the perfect manager for this team making the post-BC era a seamless one.
We’re still a bunch of hitters that rarely (Freeman’s two homer night an exception) strike long-ball fear into the opposing team’s pitcher’s heart but, hey, the Giants won it all last year doing much the same thing —timely hitting and great pitching with stout defense— and in this non-steroid age, we have as good a chance as anybody to make it to the World Series where, as we know, anything can happen.
Hanson more than did his job (and justly earned the right to bat in the bottom of the sixth with two outs despite the bases being loaded) and the bullpen did their thing once again despite the steady rain that was falling by the time those guys came in.
And, finally, the fireworks after the game were fantastic!!! My 12-years-old son loved it as did the wife so thank you Braves for a wonderful experience worth the major bucks it cost me since I bought the lower field level third base side tickets online the day before.
LET’S GO BRAVES!
July 5th, 201112:40 pm
Conrad’s play looked like a great play, on the boob tube.
Gonzo was was called out on a close play, that the magic of instant replay showed he was safe on.
I believe that he Braves are still at the top of the list, for most HRs by a team in the NL.
July 5th, 201112:42 pm
justafan@11:19……….Who is Casey Anthony?
What team does he play for?
July 5th, 201112:48 pm
I don’t think Roger Maris had muscles like Uggla….You don’t need to be a body builder to hit the ball out of the park….I’m just saying. The guy is just too bulky and all tied up….I’m just saying.
July 5th, 201112:49 pm
Wow, Freddie seems to be very mature for his age and appears to get the fundamentals of hitting. His willingness to make adjustments is propelling him into contention for ROY. Maybe he could have a long hard talk with Heyward and Schafer about what they could do to improve their own hitting.
Awesome game yesterday! My son and I were there and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
July 5th, 2011
Wow!!! That has to be the dumbest post ever!
July 5th, 201112:51 pm
@11;17……”but james brown is dead”, or is he just reportedly dead?
There have been reports, that he is living somewhere, just outside of the Vegas area, with Elvis.
July 5th, 201112:53 pm
@ 12:49…….That was a dumb post, but I can’t say the dumbest ever.
July 5th, 20111:10 pm
Thank you for looking at the little things I do on the field. Thanks for noticing my ball was a popup to center, and right field. Even though it was an out, I sure did hit the ball hard! Like you said, I did get a walk which was awesome! Have you ever seen someone work the count harder than me? Frank Wren wasn’t lying when he told me I could fool you delusional fans into loving me, and giving me excuses while I suck it up. Making 9 million a year is tough. I know if the orginization didn’t waste their money on me, they could have gotten them a real hitter! Thanks Nick, and other Braves fans for sticking with me!
Dan “The Strikeout Machine” Uggla
July 5th, 20111:31 pm
Question to all.. If we were offered the runner-up to the rookie of the year last year, Would you take him?
July 5th, 20111:47 pm
Jim, I would.
reckingball,wake up to the really world.
July 5th, 20112:34 pm
They’re hangin with jim morrison in VIVA LOS VEGAS,UH,HUH! Yea baby……
Mark (another one)
July 5th, 20112:46 pm
Young players are rarely consistent. Freeman and Heyward are 21 (not even 22, as so many of you like to say) and Shafer is 24. They are going to struggle and then shine, and back again. Its the nature of things. I’m happy to say their defense continues to be above average to outstanding, which helps compensate for their offensive issues. Of these three, Heyward has the most at bats at 730, which is more than Shafer and Freeman combined.
This isn’t the 1950’s. The economics of Baseball have changed, and the Braves don’t have a lot of options. They need to develop young players and sometimes that includes breaking them into the majors and accepting some struggling. They need to continue to work with these guys to develop consistency.
McCann and Prado are the young veterans and their consistency shows. McCann is simply unbelieveable. Remember that the Braves looked at a young McCann and signed him to a long term contract. They looked at a young Francouer and didn’t.
Ugga should be in the prime of his career and this slump is unbelievable. My thoughts at that the Braves are working with him and doing what they can but this is a mental issue, not skills. Sometimes he starts working his at bats and seems to have a plan and then he reverts to three hacks and he’s out. The frustration level has to be killing him but he needs to work through it. Sending him to the bench isn’t going to do the Braves much good. They need him to produce.
Of all the Braves players, I hold Chipper to a higher level. Chipper’s OPS is down 175 points (career .936 to 2011 .761). I don’t know if its the knee or what but he is not at his usual HOF level. Chipper is his own worst critic so I suspect he is not happy with his production. The question only he can answer is what is he going to do about it.
July 5th, 20112:49 pm
Bill@1:47………….What is, “the really world”?
July 5th, 20113:39 pm
Is an imposter….I am the original ” the truth…” and have been since these blogs began….
July 5th, 20114:04 pm
chimp – clever response – all i did was point out the negative possibilities – if you would like to refute them, go for it
July 5th, 20114:05 pm
Mark(another one) – Just a differenting opinion regarding one statement you made. The first 3 years with the Braves Franceour BA was .300, .260, and .293, pretty good compared to our .230 OF guys of today! Yes, Brian was wise and signed a 5-6 year long-term contract for decent money at that time. Franceour thought the money he was being offered was less than what he was worth at that time and refused a long term deal. That 4th year blew up in Franceour face and he only hit .239, which was extremely low for him. He had bulked up to 225-230lbs, thinking he was going to hit alot of HRS and get the big contract, it did not work!! He was sent packing and sent to other teams during which he hit .280, .249, and currently .265 this year with 12HRS, 54 RBI’s, continuing to throw runners out at the plate with his strong arm. Don’t forget he is only27 yrs old with 7 years in the bigs. He has matured , slimmed down and got his stroke back from what I understand? Is he worth the risk or was too many bridges burned? We should look at it as a business decision not a sentimental one only, in my opinion!
July 5th, 20114:30 pm
chris – been a braves fan for 50 years – just been very disappointed for 19 of the last 20
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