Archive for November, 2011

Of Braves’ potential sale, Freeman/Kimbrel rookie vote

If Liberty Media hung a For Sale sign out front of Turner Field next month, would Mark Cuban be permitted to purchase the Braves if he was the highest bidder? Or at this point, given the way baseball has treated him in the past, would he even bother bidding for the Bravos?

No, Mark Cuban is not your typical prospective baseball owner. But is that a bad thing?

No, Mark Cuban is not your typical prospective baseball owner. But is that a bad thing?

Under the terms of the agreement when Liberty Media bought the Braves in 2007, the Denver-based conglomerate could sell the team only after baseball’s current collective bargaining agreement expires, which is Dec. 11. A sale doesn’t appear imminent, unless there is a lot of advanced negotiating going on that we haven’t heard anything about.

Anyway, I was asked again last week about Dallas Mavericks owner Cuban potentially buying the Braves. I really don’t know if he has much interest, but the iconoclastic 52-year-old billionaire has previously expressed interest in buying a baseball team and generally drawn negative …

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Braves willing to trade the likes of Jurrjens, Prado? – updated

(Staff writer Carroll Rogers is filling in for David O’Brien.)

Royals general manager Dayton Moore acknowledged Friday having a conversation with the Braves about potential trade match-ups but apparently the asking price was too steep.

The Kansas City star is reporting the Braves wanted top outfield prospect Wil Myers, as well as center fielder Lorenzo Cain for Jair Jurrjens and possibly Martin Prado, but the Royals are unlikely to part with Myers.

The talks appear to have stalled, but it’s clear the Braves are exploring the possibility of cutting payroll by trading arbitration eligible players who are approaching free agency like Prado and Jurrjens.

The Royals need starting pitching– their 4.82 starters’ ERA last season was second-to-last in the majors – and they have some payroll flexibility to dedicate to improving their staff. The Braves have an abundance of starting pitching and are looking to shed payroll so they can spend on offensive upgrade in the outfield …

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Braves McCann takes fifth Silver Slugger award

A September swoon didn’t keep Braves catcher Brian McCann from winning his fifth Silver Slugger award in six years on Wednesday night and enter even more elite company.

McCann became the first player to win five Silver Sluggers as a Brave and only the sixth catcher to win five or more in his career, and he’s only 27. Silver Sluggers are awarded to the top offensive players at each position as voted on by players and managers.

McCann has won it each of the past four years and five times in only six full seasons in the major leagues.

Tom Glavine and Dale Murphy each won four Silver Slugger awards for the Braves. At catcher, Mike Piazza won 10 Silver Sluggers, Ivan Rodriguez seven, Lance Parrish six, and Gary Carter and Jorge Posada each have five.

McCann led all National League catchers with 24 home runs and he drove in 71 runs, while hitting .270 with a .351 on-base percentage. He beat out Yadier Molina of the Cardinals who hit .305 with 14 homers and 65 RBIs, and …

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Braves clear space on 40-man roster

With the free agency period set to begin Thursday – the first day free agents can sign with new teams – the Braves freed up some space on their 40-man roster Wednesday. They outrighted catcher J.C. Boscan, pitcher Stephen Marek and outfielders Wilkin Ramirez and Antoan Richardson. They also purchased the contract of Gwinnett right-hander Todd Redmond, adding him to the 40-man.

With free agents Alex Gonzalez, George Sherrill, Scott Linebrink and Jack Wilson expected to come off the 40-man roster Thursday, the Braves will have seven spots remaining for players they can add via trades and free agency and protect from the Rule 5 draft.

High on the Braves’ wish list are shortstop and a left fielder to play when Martin Prado fills in for Chipper Jones at third base.

“We like the foundation of our team,” Braves general manager Frank Wren said this week. “We may make some tweaks or we may make some bigger moves, just depending on what is out there and how it all falls over the …

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Three Braves prospects named Rising Stars

Braves prospects first baseman Joe Terdoslavich, catcher Christian Bethancourt and right-hander J.J. Hoover were named to the Arizona Fall League’s Rising Stars game on Tuesday. The all-star game will air on MLB Network and MLB.com at 8:10 p.m. eastern on Saturday from Surprise Stadium.

Terdoslavich homered on Tuesday, giving him two home runs in 14 games in the Fall League. He is hitting .364 (20-for-55) with eight extra-base hits and eight RBIs.

A torrid Bethancourt has homered in three straight games including his third in a row on Tuesday. He is hitting .367 (18-for-49) with four home runs in 13 games. He had only 12 home runs in his four minor league seasons entering the Fall League, including five in 99 games this season in Single A Lynchburg.

Hoover made it despite a 1-1 record with an 11.05 ERA in eight games in relief. He’s given up 11 hits in 7 1/3 innings but worked a perfect inning on Tuesday.

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Braves get busy: Lowe, McLouth gone, Hinske’s back

PHOENIX – Was just about to write a new blog when the news broke that Tony La Russa is going out on top, retiring after his Cardinals won the World Series. This came only about 30 minutes after I got a call in my Phoenix hotel room from someone asking me if I thought Terry Pendleton might be interested in becoming a manager.

Pendleton began his career with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Pendleton began his career with the St. Louis Cardinals.

My guess is that TP, who started his career in the Cardinals organization and played seven seasons for St. Louis, will be mentioned as a candidate for the Cardinals managerial job, a year after being switched from hitting coach to first-base coach with the Braves.

Pendleton turned down overtures from a few teams years ago, in part because he didn’t want to uproot his children while they were in school and because he loved Atlanta (still does) and Bobby Cox. Plus, he didn’t want his possible first managerial job to be with a team in flux, with a GM that could be on the way out and/or with a team …

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