7:26 am February 27, 2012, by David O'Brien
February 27th, 20127:38 am
Fredi Will Screw It Up Somehow
February 27th, 20127:42 am
Hanson’s hair is just epic.
February 27th, 20127:46 am
Freeman helps the other infielders be better infielders.
February 27th, 20127:48 am
Early AM post – well done Dave and thanks!
February 27th, 20127:53 am
Freeman sounds ready!!!
February 27th, 20128:00 am
Put a kilt on Hanson and he could star in Brave(s)heart 2
Chris from the Rock
Three 22 y/o’s in the lineup this year. That’s just crazy. Imagine how young they’ll be if Chipper retires next year and Terdoslavich wins the job. Not that I’m complaining… All of the great young players will be peaking about the time Utley, Howard and Co. are out the door. Is that another division run I smell?
Gil in Mechanicsville
February 27th, 20128:01 am
Thanks for the info Dave, great song too..
Tomahawkin (The Godfather)
Thanks for the New Blog Mr Sulu
February 27th, 20128:02 am
Braves Have 3 starters 22 or younger
The last team to win the pennant with 3 guys 22 or younger was the 1976 Reds I think?
February 27th, 20128:08 am
Thanks David. Great info on Freeman and I got a few laughs with my morning breakfast re: sunblock part of the DOB AM blog.
Thoughts on neither Michelle Williams or Viola Davis winning last night?
Meryl’s performance in Iron Lady was better than the movie itself. I thought she transformed into Margaret Thatcher. The beginning of her speech was hysterical though – saying she could her the rest of America saying “not her again!”.
February 27th, 20128:13 am
Jason needs sunblock is news to me.
Fed Up Fan
February 27th, 20128:19 am
It’s good that Freeman’s “aiming,” but so far I haven’t seen what it takes for him to win anything.
February 27th, 20128:20 am
P.S.- I hope that he proves me wrong.
Freddie Freeman is solid and will some day in the near future be an All Star, only relapse in this kid will come from an injury.
February 27th, 20128:23 am
Freeman better make the All-Star Team this year.
February 27th, 20128:35 am
Hey, David, don’t feel sorry for yourself on your thinning hair. You’re what, 20 years older than Heyward? Well, I’m probably 20 years older than you, and I could tell you some things about being this age that would make you very thankful to be the age you are. So get over it, pal.
February 27th, 20128:36 am
Thanks for the info, DOB. Excited to see Freddie in his sophomore year!
February 27th, 20128:40 am
Fred McGriff and Dave Justice are in camp as special instructors this week, arrived today.
I was standing in the clubhouse just now when Fredi (Gonzalez) introduced Freddie (Freeman) to Fred (McGriff). Kid you not.
February 27th, 20128:53 am
I don’t think we will see Freeman go through any sophomore slump unless he’s injured. The kid’s game is solid all the way around & his baseball IQ seems high compared to most his age. He’s lived in Heyward’s shadow his entire career as a Brave, but I think after this season that will change if it hasn’t already.
February 27th, 20128:56 am
DOB, are you getting any seat time on the Harley while in Florida?
February 27th, 20129:04 am
Reminds me of a Memorial Day, during my HS days. Rode to the beach that Thursday in a GTO rag top for the 3 day weekend. No SPF. Was burnt beyond party, before I reached the water. The smell of the dead fish, two drunks and Noxzema was a blister of enjoyment.
I scratched through it and felt better by Sunday…
BravesFan in DC
February 27th, 20129:08 am
Great blog, DOB. Always a good way to start the work week. I’m really looking forward to see how FF fares his sophomore season. Great tune as well!
February 27th, 20129:09 am
Justice and McGriff in camp can only be a positive thing. Justice can definitely give Heyward valuable advice as McGriff working with Freddie. I like this.
February 27th, 20129:13 am
That’s too many Freds this early in the morning.
February 27th, 20129:17 am
Hey DOB, have you thought about doing a blog about the day in the life of a Spring Training pitcher/fielder?
Wouldn’t have to be a specific player, maybe just a timeline run through of all the stuff they usually do in a typical day? Would be neat…
Bob the Blogger
February 27th, 20129:20 am
I agree completely that the defensive metrics are lacking in their ability to define the quality of defense. Whatever Freeman may lack in range (and I’m not saying he does) he makes up for in his ability to catch anything thrown in the vicinity of first base. His ability to pick throws out of the dirt is uncanny. Also, he made a number of catches over his shoulder while running toward the right foul pole.
Coach (2012 Fredi's beisbol fandango)
What Freddie Freeman said:
I truly believe Alex Gonzalez should have won one last year; he was incredible Sometimes it goes unnoticed [by Gold Glove voters]. All that matters is if guys on the team think you’re doing a good job. I was told a lot that I was helping out the team, and that’s all that matters to me.
Folks if you don’t believe Gonzo’s glove is gonna be missed…….think again. The new rookie at SS better bring his A game in 2012. Otherwise our infield is gonna leak like a sieve.
Tomahawk Chops: Daily Atlanta Braves News Clippings For Monday, February 27th | Augusta News | Augusta GA Local News
February 27th, 20129:21 am
[...] Freeman kid is not too bad either Freeman aims for Gold Glove and batting title, not HRs | Atlanta BravesSo I asked the 6-foot-5, 240-pounds first baseman, who added about five pounds this winter through [...]
February 27th, 20129:22 am
Fred familiarize Freddie for Fredi’s favor.
February 27th, 20129:31 am
Otherwise our infield is gonna leak like a sieve.
Actually, it won’t. It’ll be average. Just because the IF isn’t Gold Glove doesn’t mean it follows that it will be horrible. Just…average.
That fact, however, does mean that Hanson and Beachy take on more importance in the rotation for their ability to miss bats. Wouldn’t hurt if Jurrjens finds a little more life on his gas from his nu shooz, either.
February 27th, 20129:34 am
Thanks for the work DOB.
February 27th, 20129:37 am
Amazing what the right shoes can do, as evidenced by the near riots at the stores selling the new Jordan shoes. People lined up in the streets to get sneakers. Who would have thunk it. And yes I do know about their value on EBAY.
February 27th, 20129:38 am
wishful thinking ncscoots, don’t say that I didn’t try to warm ya’ll.
“Folks if you don’t believe Gonzo’s glove is gonna be missed…….think again. The new rookie at SS better bring his A game in 2012. Otherwise our infield is gonna leak like a sieve.”
Yes, but the career .277 on base percentage as a Brave isn’t going to be missed. The consistent 3 swings at balls and a strike out won’t be missed either. What Pastornicky may or may not give up defensively, he should more than make up with his speed and bat. And that is saying quite a bit about how bad A-Gon was offensively for the Braves.
Freddie’s got the right idea. Henry Aaron was a line-drive hitter as well. He did all right.
February 27th, 20129:41 am
Rioting over shoes…….just wait until the food stamps and welfare checks don’t show up, then I guess we can watch the real fun
February 27th, 20129:42 am
Even playing like they did in September, the Braves only made one error . Kind of hard to imagine that even with Goinzalez back that they’d equal that level of defense again, anyway.
Pastornicky should get on base better than Gonzalez and his fielding won’t be as good. Prbably at worst, it’s a wash.
February 27th, 20129:43 am
Coach – You’re surprised about rioting over shoes? Hell, the French Revolution ended in lots of death over bread.
February 27th, 20129:44 am
MFin04, I’m one of the few who values defense as much as offense these days.
February 27th, 20129:46 am
Coach – No need to try to “warm” me, I’m pretty cold natured…Oh, you probably meant “warn”. In that case, I guess time will tell.
February 27th, 20129:50 am
Coach – I place a high value on defense, as well…especially up the middle. However, in this case it comes down to how many runs the defense costs you, vs how many runs your offense produces. As Lew said (beat me to it), it may be a wash, at worst.
I agree MFin04 about missing Gonzo. The left side of the infield is going to be hard to watch with Chippers lack of range and Pastornicky’s propensity for errors. It’s going to take a lot of offense to make up for it. It’s also going to put a lot more pressure on a young pitching staff that doesn’t need the additional runners on base.
February 27th, 20129:52 am
One reason Gonzo was so good was Freeman, the Rev gets Freeman this year. He will be just fine.
February 27th, 20129:53 am
February 27th, 2012
I really hope you’re right, otherwise I’m gonna be doing a lot of cussing at the TV this summer
Well, with Gonzalez at bat, the offense was painful to watch. That should be improved this eyar. Like I said – a wash.
However, I’d expect with the tutoring by Wilson, a very well maintained infield (not tooo many in AA) and a 6′5″ first baseman who can dig the ball out of the dirt with the best of them, that Pastornicky won’t be nearly as bad as most believe he will.
February 27th, 20129:55 am
Not to mention considerably better lighting at the MLB levbel.
February 27th, 20129:57 am
I’ll definitely take the loss in defense at SS with the improvement they are bound to get at offense. I think it will be negligible. Don’t forget that in 2010 the Braves were pretty bad defensively, and I think Freeman is a big part of why they got better. He saved so many bad throws to first that would Glaus never would have gotten. Looking at the total errors on the infield in 2010 vs 2011, every position went down except for 2B (only one more error there with Uggla primarily playing versus Prado/Infante). Both Gonzo and Chipper had improvements on defense in 2011, which is again something I think can be partly contributed to Freeman.
February 27th, 201210:00 am
I’m one of the few who values defense as much as offense these days.
Which is why you’re always pretty much wrong on questions in this area. You tend to overvalue the former and undervalue the latter. Successful baseball requires that a team value appropriately the skillsets available to it and determine if its strengths overcome its weaknesses, and to what degree.
I’d rather see players who can bring the leather than those who can’t, but that doesn’t automatically make me cast less-than-stellar defenders into the abyss. On this team, anyway, the IF defense isn’t going make anybody forget Ozzie Smith, but it’s not as if they’re bricklayers, either. And Chipper and Uggla make up offensively any defensive lacks, in spades.
February 27th, 201210:04 am
lew You’re surprised about rioting over shoes? Hell, the French Revolution ended in lots of death over bread
rioting over bread actually makes sense. the people rioting over jordan’s probably are already wearing shoes, and have a couple more pair sitting in a closet at home. bread is kinda a basic necessity.
February 27th, 201210:05 am
“………….it’s now 6:30 a.m. Monday and I need to get this blog posted and get in the shower and drive back over to the ballpark for 8 a.m. clubhouse time………….” DOB
If you half-way included that comment as a reference to those doofus idiots who post here and razz you regarding work, and think you have a soft job…………fa’ gid’ da’ boud dit’, and them. They don’t respect themselves or their work, let alone others’.
February 27th, 201210:07 am
“I’m one of the few who values defense as much as offense these days.”
Yeh, but you have to give value to the .277 on base percentage. That is close to worst in the NL if not the worst for NL Starters. And Freeman does help the defense out a lot. The reason the Braves didn’t have that many errors last year wasn’t because of great defense from 3B, SS, and 2B it was because of Freddie Freeman digging out anything that came close to the bag.
February 27th, 201210:09 am
Whatever Freeman may lack in range (and I’m not saying he does) he makes up for in his ability to catch anything thrown in the vicinity of first base
Glove work is more important than range at first and Freeman probably does get lower on the ratings a bit unfairly,but it does not make up for lack of range because there are others who catch as well but have much more range.
February 27th, 201210:11 am
The Braves have 4 Starting Pitchers coming off injuries (Hudson, Hanson, JJ, and Medlen). Three of these (Hudson, Hanson, and JJ) – before their injuries began – were great pitchers; and the fourth (Medlen) was already performing great in limited experience. A BIG QUESTION is – will all 4 of these return to being Great – after their injures – Or will it be 3 out of the 4 – Or 2 out of the 4 – Or 1 out of the 4????? Problem is — Pitchers (unlike position players) many times never returen to being great after serious injuries. The Braves could be in significant trouble if even 1 or 2 of these 4 pitchers to not returen to form – and just coming back and being average will not get it. In reality, odds are that at least 2 of them will not return to their former greatness. The Braves and almost everyone else seem to be ignoring the fact that in the 6 or 7 years since Leo left as Pitching Coach – of all the large number of Starting Pitchers the Braves have had (counting only those who were in the rotation a reasonable length of time) – most of them have become injured. True, the Braves have an abundance of additional young pitching talent – but as long as this trend of Starting Pitchers being injured continues – this may be meaningless – may just destroy this wealth of young talent.
February 27th, 201210:12 am
The reason the Braves didn’t have that many errors last year wasn’t because of great defense from 3B, SS, and 2B it was because of Freddie Freeman digging out anything that came close to the bag.
Well, in fairness, you have to be able to get to it first, for Freeman’s glove to be of any account. Safe to say that infielld defensive range is not going to be one of this team’s assets.
DAP – Since when has common sense or sheer need made any difference in what people feel they absolutley have to have. Think rioting during the post Thanksgiving sales – people assaulted over insignificant pieces of trash. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the guillotiner come back into use. People are flat out freaking nuts these days.
February 27th, 201210:13 am
On this team, anyway, the IF defense isn’t going make anybody forget Ozzie Smith, but it’s not as if they’re bricklayers, either. And Chipper and Uggla make up offensively any defensive lacks, in spades.,,,scoots
I kinda disagree a bit, the three returning players are all short on range so even if Tyler is average, and I think he will be, we are still gonna leak more than I like
Lew you are correct about minor league fields, lighting and first baseman contributing to error totals. Elvis Andrus, former Braves farmhand, had error totals his last three years before being promoted to Texas of 32, 30 and 32. He improved his error total by 10 less to 22 errors in his rookie season
Pastornicky never reached the 30 error region Elvis consistently played at. Also since I’m talking about Texas, the team did pretty well last year with Beltre having near doubled (11) the errors as Chipper (6) and Elvis near doubled (25) the errors of Gonzalez (12)
Pitching and defense is the name of the game. Defense can bail a pitcher out of a lot of problems and pitching can bail the defense out of some harmless errors.
February 27th, 201210:14 am
Case in pint – Don will take a life over pitchers injuries before much longer. McDowell should be very afraid.
I’m also not sure how much improvement we are gonna get in offense over Gonzo except in OBP
Also case in point. Either way………
February 27th, 201210:16 am
well it doesn’t take a psychic or a prophet to realize when
gas gets a little higher , what the next revolution will be brought about by
Texas won 96 games with that horrid left side of the infield in 2011
February 27th, 201210:17 am
Wait a minute. The cheapest (non-lawn) tickets for Saturday’s opener are $30.75?! For a spring training game? So I can go see the Yankees play the Braves at the Ted on a beautiful summer afternoon for like $12 but seeing scrubs knock the rust off costs $30.75? That seems a little crazy to me, unless I’m missing something. And didn’t someone, maybe DOB, mention you had to pay just to get into the park?
they play in a hitter’s paradise
February 27th, 201210:22 am
nolie – Psatornicky’s OBP and speed? Got to be better than Gonzo’s .270 OBP and a few HR.
You only pay to enter Disney’s Wide World of Sports that the Braves share with other events that go on at the same time the Braves practice. Yes you must pay $15.50 to enter that complex and that allows you access to everything, including Braves practice
The game ticket price is the only cost to enter the complex.
I agree Billy, I think Tyler will be a better defender than some here fear
February 27th, 201210:23 am
Might have something to do with the difference between having 54,000 seats and 3500 where the Yankess sell out imediately every year.
February 27th, 201210:24 am
Was McDowell also Tommy’s mechanic? This would help Don’s theory…
scoots Well, in fairness, you have to be able to get to it first, for Freeman’s glove to be of any account
i have a hypothesis that freeman being so good over there made the infielders willing to take more chances, and make more plays. if thats the case, freeman’s glove came into play on every ball fielded.
February 27th, 201210:26 am
Coach – A lot of cussing this summer? And that varies from your norm how?
Did Don say something?….No, I guess not.
February 27th, 201210:27 am
maybe Lew, but I bet not all that much better .Gonzo was 642 last year but would likely bounce back some this season, since he is a 690 career. I’m guessing Tyler will do 660 or 670. be real nice if he does better though
February 27th, 201210:28 am
An unusual photo which includes Terry Pendleton, Tim Kurkjian and Maxwell Smart…
February 27th, 201210:29 am
Billy and Lew –
Thanks for the advice. I have never been to Braves spring training and have a couple of weeks before starting a new job so it seemed like the perfect time to go, but after looking at ticket prices, gas prices and my truck’s fuel economy, I’m starting to think it will cost several hundred dollars just to see one game! Obviously the Braves only control the ticket prices, but expecting a family of four to shell out $150 for tickets and hot dogs to a spring game just seems a little crazy to me. Especially when you compare it to other teams who have similar tickets going for $10 (e.g. Pirates in Bradenton).
February 27th, 201210:30 am
Some pics from workout in past hour:
president John Schuerholz talks w/ Fred McGriff
special instructor David Justice w/ Dan Uggla and Brian McCann during stretching
hitting coach Greg Walker & Fred McGriff. David Justice & McGriff are special instructors
New MLB 2k12 Video has Yunel Escobar getting picked off. Well if that isn’t realistic gameplay, I don’t know what is.
February 27th, 201210:32 am
DOB, are you getting any seat time on the Harley while in Florida? — fastasballs
February 27th, 201210:33 am
“The last team to win the pennant with 3 guys 22 or younger was the 1976 Reds I think?”
This HAS to win the award for most totally irrelevant statistic of the day. The Reds had Joe Morgan and Dave Concepcion in their primes, the Braves have Dan Uggla and Tyler Pastornicky.
thanx for the pix. Good to see Crime Dog again in a Braves uni. still looks pretty trim, can we sign him up for our weak bench
February 27th, 201210:34 am
Lew People are flat out freaking nuts these days.
thats for sure. i do think we are going to see more of that in 2012, but over stuff more serious than shoes. what has happened in greece has really got me thinking. not to get political, but i worry about that happening here.
February 27th, 201210:35 am
and I really like those jerseys
Mikey – That’s one reason why I try to go to practice befopre the games start instead of going to the games, themselves. ONly exhibiton games and going before the games after everyone reports, you actually get to talk to players and get autographs for half the price (and no concessions are open, so you don’t spend all that money for Diet Coke.
February 27th, 201210:36 am
gun sales are breaking records every month lately. gonna turn into a “polite” society again
Mikeyc588 – I share your pain. Reluctantly gave up our spring training seats in Clearwater this year when the price hit $900 for two seats. Still have a ticket from a 4th of July game between the Pirates and Phils at 3 Rivers from ‘76 – $3.50 right behind first base! Just shows I’m old. Will still catch the Braves three times here and in Dunedin this spring.
February 27th, 201210:39 am
nolie I’m also not sure how much improvement we are gonna get in offense over Gonzo except in OBP
because of rev’s skill set, i think he will have a much better slash line that gonzalez, meaning better avg/obp/slg. he wont have the raw numbers, like homers, but he is going to put the ball in play, and thats going to equal alot more hits that gonzalez had.
by the way, i was thinking the same thing about crime dog. looks like hes in playing shape. seeing him in the braves uni reminds me of the old days…
February 27th, 201210:41 am
Ever been to Ybor City in Tampa? Has a rich cigar history and is mentioned in several Hold Steady songs. I have to go down to Tampa next week and was thinking of making it a priority. Just wanted to know if perhaps you had any restaurant/bar/cigar bar recommendations…
A Lot of those spectacular plays made by AGon last year, were made with the help of Freeman’s ability to dig put-out throws out of the dirt.
I think that Pastornicky will do alright on the defense, and will definitely be more productive at the plate than last year’s SS.
February 27th, 201210:42 am
Slick fielding Alex Gonzalez had 37 errors before breaking into major league baseball, as a minor leaguer. That is where you make your mistakes to learn your craft.
Slick fielding Alex Gonzalez made 27 errors in his 22 year old rookie season.
Pastornicky will be fine.
February 27th, 201210:43 am
I don’t think there will be much OPS difference DAP, the speed will be an asset to some degree but with less power
February 27th, 201210:44 am
Oh I forgot to be more diminutive to those that need it. Yes, those 37 errors were his one year AA total
February 27th, 201210:45 am
Gotta love auto correct. Was intended to be definitive before it was hijacked for another word
February 27th, 201210:46 am
Thanks for posting the pics DOB. I want to make sweet love to that beautiful green grass.
February 27th, 201210:48 am
Lot more scoring opportunities with a higher OBP and speed than a dozen and a half solo HR.
Great read. Thanks, DOB
February 27th, 201210:49 am
From the left side the Braves will field Bourn, Jones, McCann, Freeman, and Heyward. From the right, Prado, Uggla, and Pastornicky. When Jones doesn’t play the most likely fill-in will be Hinske or Diaz. The Braves GM is making life awfully tough on Freeman and Heyward, not to mention the veteran lefties and Jones. That lineup would look a LOT different with a big right-handed bat in the middle of the order. Keep in mind, overall the Braves got an AVERAGE year of productivity from Uggla last season (he just did it all in one month).
Lemke’s needs a girlfriend.
February 27th, 201210:50 am
The two man grounds crew keeps that main field painstakingly immaculate with the never ending attention they were giving it Saturday
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