Braves are trying to fix pitching, but what of the offense?

The Braves’ pitching has been an overall disappointment and the team has been exploring all potential possibilities to improve the starting rotation, with Sunday’s signing of Ben Sheets only the first of what the team says could be a couple of starting pitchers added before the non-waiver trade deadline.

The Braves hope the no-risk signing of Sheets can help boost their starting rotation.

The Braves hope the no-risk signing of Sheets can help boost their starting rotation.

No one realistically expects Sheets, who’ll be 34 this month, to be the overpowering game-changing type of pitcher he was in his Milwaukee heyday. Not after two elbow surgeries in two years and after not pitching in a game for nearly two years. But according to those who watched him pitch last week at Georgia Tech, he can be an improvement over what the Braves currently have at the back end of their rotation.

First, swap him for Mike Minor or Randall Delgado, which the Braves plan to do soon after the All-Star break, as long as Sheets is healthy and looks ready after a few minor-league starts.

Then trade for another pitcher in the next four weeks, whether it’s Ryan Dempster, Matt Garza, Zack Greinke (whom I still think is unlikely given the multiple prospects it’ll cost to get him and the huge contract it’ll take to re-sign him next winter) or even a Francisco Liriano. All of a sudden, the Braves’ Brandon Beachy-less rotation would look a whole lot more reliable than the current situation, which is three days where the Braves have a pretty good chance to win, then two days when they have absolutely no idea what they’ll get from the two young starters.

And for those who wonder why the Braves are interested in Minnesota lefty Liriano, given his 2-7 record, 5.40 ERA and 44 walks in 76-2/3 innings over 18 games (13 starts) this season, consider these numbers since he moved from the bullpen back into the regular rotation on May 30:

In his past seven games (all starts), he’s 2-2 with a 2.95 ERA, .170 opponents’ average and 18 walks with 46 strikeouts in 42-2/3 innings. He has five quality starts in that seven-game period, and the Twins scored no runs while he was in the two losses, and one run while he was in two of the three no-decisions.

And did we mention, he’s left-handed? Also, he’s making $5.5 million this season, which means Liriano is only owed about half of that amount for the rest of the season. The Braves can afford him. And, unlike what it might take to get a Dempster (that is, if they want the Cubs to eat part of the $6 million or so he’ll still be owed on his $14 million contract) or a Garza (he’s making $9.5 mill this season and is still under contractual control for another year), the Braves probably wouldn’t have to give up a couple of good-or-better prospects to get Liriano.

Dempster, who has a strained lat muscle and is expected back from the DL after the All-Star break, also makes sense for the Braves because of his experience and clubhouse reputation, which Braves GM Frank Wren and manager Fredi Gonzalez both know from their days in the Marlins organization when Dempster was coming up with Florida.

• But about the hitting: OK, so the pitching is one disappointing area the Braves are trying to improve. But what about the offense? Specifically, the Braves’ continued inconsistency with runners in scoring position. (And actually, that’s not accurate in that they are pretty consistent in that area lately – consistently bad.)

The Braves are now tied for 24th in majors with a .235 batting average with RISP, and their .681 OPS with RISP is 25th, ahead of only the Marlins, Cubs, Royals, Giants and Padres.

Can the Braves just stick with what they have and expect it all to come together in the second half? So far, they’ve only had the one early season stretch where most of their hitters were healthy and productive at the same time. And lately, the RISP thing has been particularly costly given the pitching woes and the early deficits the team has faced in many games.

Tough to come from behind when you waste so many scoring opportunities. (Not to mention when you can’t count on the bullpen to be the lock-down, majors-best unit it was last season.)

The Braves have lost three of their past four games, and in those three losses here’s what they did with RISP: 1-for-8 in Sunday’s 8-4 loss to Washington, 2-for-10 in Friday’s 5-4 loss to Washington, and 0-for-8 in Thursday’s 3-2 loss to Arizona.

No Brave has hit above .292 with runners in scoring position this season, and the three Braves with the most RISP at-bats are all at .236 or below: Dan Uggla (.236, 17-for-72), Freddie Freeman (.211, 16-for-76) and Brian McCann (.179, 12-for-67)

The Brave with the fourth-most at-bats with RISP is leadoff man Michael Bourn, who’s tied for team lead with a .292 average (19-for-65) in those situations.

BRAVES LINEUP Monday

  1. Bourn CF
  2. Prado LF
  3. Heyward RF
  4. Jones 3B
  5. Freeman 1B
  6. Uggla 2B
  7. McCann C
  8. Simmons SS
  9. Hanson P

Home-field advantage? So much for the notion that plus-100 temperatures might give the Braves a home-field advantage. But then, anyone who’s been to D.C. during a heatwave knows that the Nationals have played in more uncomfortable conditions than this weekend, when it was absurdly hot (106 degrees Saturday, 104 on Sunday) but not nearly as humid as it usually is during the summer here in Atlanta or Washington.

And so the Braves’ odd home/road disparity continues. Now granted, it’s only a half-season, and we’ve seen these sort of things turn around suddenly, without warning. And we really have no explanation for why this particular Braves team would play so much better on the road, where in the recent past they’ve had seasons where they ranked among the majors’ best home teams and struggled on the road.

That said, here are the numbers so far, and note how they reversed after the first few games at home and on the road:

The Braves swept their three-game opening home series against Milwaukee, but since then they’ve gone 15-20 with a 4.50 ERA and 155 runs in 35 home games (4.4 runs per game).

The Braves lost the first four games on the road to start the season, but since then they’ve gone 23-13 with a 3.56 ERA and 173 runs in 36 games (4.8 runs per game).

The Braves are 4-9 with a .258 batting average and 4.15 ERA in their past 13 home games, and 7-3 with a .276 average and 3.41 ERA in their past 10 road games.

For the season, the Braves are 18-20 with a 4.43 ERA at Turner Field, and 23-17 with a 3.67 ERA on the road.

The only NL East team with a worse home record than Atlanta is Philadelphia (17-24), while the only division team with a better home record than Atlanta is Washington (20-14).

• Hudson vs. Nats: Tim Hudson has faced the Nationals twice this season, and in both games they scored four runs in the top of the first inning. The Nationals went on to win 7-4 in the May 25 game, and won 8-4 on Sunday when Huddy again got rocked by the visiting Nats in the opening frame.

“For the second time in a row they ambushed Huddy early,” Chipper Jones said after Sunday’s loss. “They did it to him the last time they were in town, and today was just like his first inning the last time. We’ve got to get that ironed out, because that team’s in first place for a reason – they’ve got really good lock-down starting pitching. They’ve got a real good back end to the bullpen. It’s tough to string stuff together against them.

For the second time in two starts against the Nationals this season, Hudson gave up four runs in the first inning.

For the second time in two starts against the Nationals this season, Hudson gave up four runs in the first inning.

“I thought we did a good job once again of seeing a lot of pitches from their starter and getting him knocked out of the game early. But when you fall down early and then you make mistakes late in the game to give up a couple of runs late, it takes a lot of the wind out of your sails.”

The Braves got within 6-4 on Sunday after Freeman’s three-run homer in the sixth inning, but Jonny Venters stumbled again in the two-run eighth inning.

Since May 1, Venters has a 6.14 ERA and .348 opponents’ average in 29 appearances, with 32 hits, 17 runs (15 earned) and 12 walks allowed in 22 innings.

With Hudson, the odd thing is that his 0-2 record and 8.53 ERA in two starts against the Nationals this season comes against one of the teams he dominated for most of his career. Before this season, he was 14-3 with a 2.05 ERA in 23 starts against Washington.

• Catching oddity: Speaking of strange numbers, get a lot of the day/night splits for Braves catchers McCann and David Ross.

In 15 day games, McCann is a team-worst 4-for-49 (.082) with one homer, two RBIs, .291 OPS.

In 12 day games, Ross is team-best 14-for-39 (.359) with two homers, four RBIs, .996 OPS.

In 47 night games, McCann is 49-for-185 (.265) with eight homers, 33 RBIs, .782 OPS.

In 15 night games, Ross is a team-worst 6-for-33 (.182) with one homer, three RBIs, .553 OPS.

• Etc.

Freeman has hit .323 (21-for-65) with 12 RBIs, .366 OBP and .477 slugging in 18 games since June 5, including .378 (14-for-37) with two homers, .622 slugging and 10 RBIs in his past 10 games, and .476 (10-for-21) with six RBIs during a six-game hitting streak….

Chipper has hit .357 (10-for-28) with four doubles, one homer, five RBIs, six walks and .471 OBP during a six-game hitting streak….

Uggla has hit .208 with four homers, 46 strikeouts and a .358 slugging percentage in 120 at-bats (37 games) at home, and .252 with seven homers, 46 K, .450 slugging in 151 at-bats (40 games) on the road…

Uggla with 2 strikes: .116 (17-for-147) with four homers, 30 walks, 92 strikeouts. Uggla in day games: .200 (16-for-80) with four homers, 16 walks, 27 K, .340 OBP…

The Braves are 10-14 with a 4.50 ERA in day games, and 31-23 with a 3.86 ERA at night.

• Let’s close with “And it Shook Me” from the great Graham Parker, which you can hear by clicking here.

graham-parker

“AND IT SHOOK ME” by Graham Parker

And it shook me, it shook me up, it shook me up, yeah
I remember the way you looked when we first met
There are some things in this world you can`t forget
You were standing underneath the light I lost my heart, It felt all right
And it shook me, and I’m still shaking now.

I remember rainy nights I thought I`d drown
Was it London New York Paris or Amsterdam
I forget the details no I must admit But you were there through all of it
And it shook me, and I’m still shaking now.

Will you hold on and hope our grip don’t fail
Sometimes lovers hammer in their own coffin nails
I just read how universes start, continually they blow apart
And it shook me and I’m still shaking now.

Some believe in a heaven up above
With a God that forgives all with his great love
Well I forgive you if you forgive me, hey! Who needs the third party anyway
And it shook me and I`m still shaking now.

– David O’Brien, Braves/MIB blog

2,027 comments Add your comment

BFChris27

July 2nd, 2012
3:02 pm

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:03 pm

how come that box flashes red all da time…

Efrim

July 2nd, 2012
3:03 pm

And you know, the Braves have that first round pitcher read for them in either Signable or Polished….

Garza would cost more, but I think a deal centered around Mike Minor would work. We can add in a couple other prospects so we can get Kameron Loe and finish the comp for Greinke. 2 months of Greinke isn’t going ot get you a ton, Brewers have to know this….

Nate from State

July 2nd, 2012
3:04 pm

I’ll repost this from earlier blog:

Seems DOB is leaning towards Liriano while Bowman is pumping Grienke like no tomorrow. Given the money and prospects it would take to get Grienke, and knowing how the Braves tend to operate post-Texiera trade, I’m going with Liriano.

Efrim

July 2nd, 2012
3:05 pm

I’d trade anyone in the farm system except for Teheran at this point.

TennesseePaul

July 2nd, 2012
3:06 pm

Thanks for the work DOB.

GO BRAVES!

Ease

July 2nd, 2012
3:07 pm

Hopefully if he’s deserving, there are enough voters that understand position scarcity and understand how to properly evaluate defense (beyond fielding percentage and errors).

Because the BBWAA has nothing better to do…

Zac in Tempe

July 2nd, 2012
3:07 pm

I just hope they don’t trade for Hamels. I just know that a couple of the prospects would come back to haunt the Braves for years to come.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:07 pm

I think Greinke is very unlikely. I have huge doubts about Liriano being effective the rest of the season. Garza and Dempster are safer more than likely depending on whether they want a guy another season

Zac in Tempe

July 2nd, 2012
3:08 pm

Also, that guy’s the worst

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:08 pm

No rookie of the year has ever won the award based on defense. If so Freeman should have beat out Kimbrel, eh? ;)

Timothy

July 2nd, 2012
3:09 pm

Are you trying to say that hitting with RISP is a skill? The fact that their hits don’t come at the right time doesn’t mean they need an offensive upgrade. Who would you replace? There is literally no one in their lineup they need to or can upgrade from.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:10 pm

Freeman and his middle of the pack defensive metrics? shirley you jest

George T

July 2nd, 2012
3:10 pm

This is a fine middle of the pack Major league Baseball team with a group of very nice, average, ballplayers led by very nice, no leadership skills management both on and off the field. As Andy told Gomer when he and Barney arranged a date with Thelma Lou’s cousin “just don’t expect too much”
I have been a Braves fan since 1965 when the move South was announced and will be a Brave’s fan until I move to that Great ballyard in the sky but…I am also a realist.

Ease

July 2nd, 2012
3:10 pm

Stellar work DOB…(disclaimer to follow)

As usual.

TheOnlyBravesFan

July 2nd, 2012
3:10 pm

I’m here. Thanks DOB!

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:11 pm

I think DOB believes that to be a repeatable skill indeed

space monkey

July 2nd, 2012
3:11 pm

We scored four times yesterday. That means we could have won with a quality start. The pitching is clearly the problem, not the offense. Four runs should be enough to win any well-pitched game.

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:11 pm

“Freeman and his middle of the pack defensive metrics?”

Love those metrics. :) If they can’t see that Freeman is a top 5 defensive 1st baseman, than they might want to fix those…

BFChris27

July 2nd, 2012
3:11 pm

Hopefully the Monday losing streak ends today, it’s gotta right?

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:13 pm

“We scored four times yesterday. That means we could have won with a quality start”

No team has ever won a game by scoring 4 runs, if they have already given up 4 runs in the top of the 1st.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:13 pm

great glove, gives up too many hits from lack of range when compared to other great gloves with good range

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:14 pm

Trap Series Against the AAA Iowa Cubs, Must Take 3 out of 4, No Excuses if we go 1-3…

Matt Chernoff was On Point in that he Claims that All our pitching prospects are on the Table…And he is Questioning Fredi in what the Hell is he Doing with MED’s now that he just signed Sheets…

Med Should be starting after the all star Break!

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:14 pm

I thought we are playing the Illinois Cubs

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:15 pm

B-Macc is hitting 7th today

About damn Time Fredi, Fans on here have been calling that to happen for the last Month!

Heisenberg

July 2nd, 2012
3:15 pm

Just now saw the blog yesterday about Simmons and the ROY award. For those keeping score at home, I was on this bandwagon after his first week up and most on these blogs dismissed my opinion. Maybe now that a “professional” blogger has gotten on board, the rest of you can get on board as well.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:15 pm

he’ll keep Meds in the pen where he should be if sheets works at all

archie

July 2nd, 2012
3:17 pm

Glad to see McCann batting 7th tonight, would much rather see Freeman in the cleanup spot. Chipper is not a 3-4 hitter any more. I’m old enough to remember Eddie Matthews in the late 60s. Much like Chipper, he hung around too long. Eddie couldn’t run or field the last couple of years. Chipper still has a few singles left in his bat, but the rest of his game is gone. Sad to see.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:17 pm

depends on who the “professional” blogger is, but I kinda doubt it picks up much steam for another 6 weeks at best

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:17 pm

“gives up too many hits from lack of range when compared to other great gloves with good range”

Really can’t think of any hits he has given up this year because of his range.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:17 pm

My Post All Star Break Rotation

Huddy
Big Red
Double J
Little Big Man MED’s
Sheets

Money Mike Minor’s Next 2 starts will determine a lot on what happens to him the rest of the season, Ditto for Delgado

This Team is too Talented on Paper to be 41-37…I’m still taking it to Vegas that The Braves go 92-70

Shaun

July 2nd, 2012
3:18 pm

The Braves can’t fix their performance with RISP. It’s just bad timing and has little to do with some distinct skill or lack thereof to hit with RISP. There’s not really an open spot, except for a bench bat that can play leftfield and/or thirdbase. The only weak spot in the everyday lineup so far has been McCann, and you figure he’ll get better. It’s possible shortstop becomes an offensive hole at some point but there are no signs so far and Simmons is going to save so many runs defensively that, even if he stops hitting, it will be worth playing him everyday. You can’t fix bad timing. You just have to hope that things start to even out some.

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:18 pm

What’s the lineup?

Ease

July 2nd, 2012
3:19 pm

I thought we are playing the Illinois Cubs

And I thought it was the Chicago Little Bears.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:19 pm

Heisenberg

“Just now saw the blog yesterday about Simmons and the ROY award. For those keeping score at home, I was on this bandwagon after his first week up and most on these blogs dismissed my opinion. Maybe now that a “professional” blogger has gotten on board, the rest of you can get on board as well.”

Welcome To the Party “Professional Blogger” Can You Take me under your wing? I need Help Learning the fine arts of the Game!

ncbravesfan90

July 2nd, 2012
3:19 pm

1. Michael Bourn (L) CF
2. Martin Prado (R) LF
3. Jason Heyward (L) RF
4. Chipper Jones (S) 3B
5. Freddie Freeman (L) 1B
6. Dan Uggla (R) 2B
7. Brian McCann (L) C
8. Andrelton Simmons (R) SS
9. Tommy Hanson (R) P

flange1

July 2nd, 2012
3:20 pm

Does anyone care what Matt Chernoff has to say?

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:21 pm

I can, the video guys obviously can

the +/- leader board now at first

Adrian Gonzalez +12
Mark Teixeira +9
Albert Pujols +8
Gaby Sanchez +8
Daric Barton +7
James Loney +5
Logan Morrison +4
Justin Smoak +3
Brandon Belt +3
Joey Votto +3

phil

July 2nd, 2012
3:21 pm

Fastball

July 2nd, 2012
3:22 pm

Finally someone sees that Wren needs to go. ….and take Fredi with him. Goodbye.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:22 pm

BREAKING

Fran Wren will be on the Chuck and Chernoff Show @430PM EST to Discuss Trade possibilities. Surely He is Pd off at the play of this collection of Stiffs

Catch The Interview streaming live @680thefan.com

Ease

July 2nd, 2012
3:22 pm

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:23 pm

Fire the “Professional Blogger”

Bat Masterson

July 2nd, 2012
3:23 pm

Matt Chernoff?

That sounds like a commie name. Someone sic McCarthy on his butt

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:24 pm

you don’t expect Frank to say much of actual substance do you?

Heisenberg

July 2nd, 2012
3:24 pm

I am not the “Professional Blogger”. He is the one with the photo at the top. But still plenty of room about the Simmons ROY bus.

And on the topic of the subject du jour, I thought Minor was already on a start-by-start basis. So I guess he has at least earned 1 more start.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:24 pm

like cheap vodka

Shaun

July 2nd, 2012
3:25 pm

Freeman lacks the range to be one of the best defensive firstbasemen. It’s not possible to simply adjust the measures of his range simply because people want him to be a great defensive firstbaseman. His range is what it is. If you don’t trust actual measures of his range, it’s not those metrics that need to be adjusted. It’s your views of Freeman’s range that need to be adjusted. He’s a solid defensive firstbaseman but he’s simply not one of the best.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:25 pm

@Fastball

“Finally someone sees that Wren needs to go. ….and take Fredi with him. Goodbye.”

I’m not a Blind Homer as most on here are aware of but, Wren has done a A- job during his tenure here considering the circumstances of a Limited Budget,

BFChris27

July 2nd, 2012
3:25 pm

So I had jury duty, but didn’t get picked, so I have the rest of the day off 8-)

It’s storming though, so come on 6pm CST!!!!

Bat Masterson

July 2nd, 2012
3:25 pm

Chipper still has a few singles left in his bat, but the rest of his game is gone. Sad to see.

Yes, as was clearly evidenced by the 400 foot homerun the other night and the double yesterday.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:25 pm

in baseball anything is impossible, even the impossible

phil

July 2nd, 2012
3:26 pm

Frank isn’t going to say one meaningful thing in that stupid interview…..

Why would anyone think he is going to?

“We’re doing well. We’re doing great! Stop the hate!”

That’s basically gonna be it.

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:26 pm

Nolie – well, as much as I tend to agree with you about Greinke…I would much rather perfer him over Garza and Dempster

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:27 pm

anything is possible, even the impossible …sheeeesh

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:27 pm

Where are the Bandwagon Cubs Fans At…They Used to Turn Turner Field into Wrigley Field South, I wonder if that will hold true tonight, having known a few Frontrunning Cubs fans

least of the east

July 2nd, 2012
3:27 pm

if they knew how to draft, there wouldn’t be a pitching problem. Harrison and Diamond would help now wouldn’t they ?
when you draft mostly pitchers at top the the draft and miss, then there are few position players who you get to help. end result is 0 for both.
intl free agent period started today. BA shows many of their top 20 signed already. Braves have yet to sign anyone yet . what a surprise !
need new owner, new GM and new mgr.
aside from pitching and offense, Braves are just fine. defense isn’t that great either actually.

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:28 pm

sure Frank, he’s a better pitcher. just less likely imo

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:28 pm

Frank Wren is MORE predictable than a post-game with Fredi or Bobby.

“We’re looking for starting pitching…ya-ya…”

“Looking to improve the team in whatever way possible…”

“Yes of course we have the money to spend” (translation: we just aren’t going to spend it, therefore we don’t really have the money.)

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:28 pm

S/O To Frank From KS

Whats Up Bro? I haven’t seen you on here in a Gripp!

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:29 pm

T – Wren is NOT the problem, it’s that guy in the dugout, that has manager on the back of his uniform…namely, Fredi…

TheOnlyBravesFan

July 2nd, 2012
3:29 pm

B-Macc is hitting 7th today

Why not 9th?????

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:30 pm

if they knew how to draft, there wouldn’t be a pitching problem. Harrison and Diamond would help now wouldn’t they ?…least

huh? you are bitching about their drafting and then talk about guys who could help that they are the ones who drafted them? something is missing there

tony austin

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

Don’t underestimate the Cubs and the ability of the Braves offense not to hit that Cy Young contending rotation. Smardija (I don’t know if that’s how you spell his name, but if it’s not I don’t feel like looking up the correct spelling) and Malholm will own this offense. Just have to hope the Braves staff can hold the Cubs to a run or two per game.

unbelievable

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

Probably already addressed here today, but just came across this.

The Braves, working with diminishing payrolls, reacted with restraint to last September’s collapse, but some in the industry believe that a second straight failure to reach the postseason could jeopardize GM Frank Wren. – Rosenthal

Id say Fredi is in danger also.

Jimmy

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

B-Macc is hitting 7th today

Why not 9th?????

Because it decreases the chances of someone being on when Bourn bats.

shorty

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

Want to fix the Braves …Fire Fredi the Fail!

MFin04

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

I’ve noticed Fredi hasn’t been shagging balls or hitting BP lately…could really be effecting the Braves…. :roll: Certainly, hasn’t driven in a run yet this year, or caught a ball…

Shaun

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

McCann’s BABIP is .229, 3rd lowest in the majors (minimum 250 PA). His career BABIP is .295.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

@MFin

Give Wren some Props, dude is a Shrewd Businessman….

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:32 pm

Not much here, just thought I’d come check out the blog for a change…since it’s been awhile since I’ve come on

Efrim

July 2nd, 2012
3:33 pm

Atlanta Braves ‏@Braves
Tonight’s lineup vs. CHI (7:10, SPSO/680AM/BRN): Bourn 8 Prado 7 Heyward 9 Jones 5 Freeman 3 Uggla 4 McCann 2 Simmons 6 Hanson 1

Nice. Exactly what I was hoping for vs. RHP. Chipper hitting cleanup in between Heyward and Freeman with Uggs and Mac down until they can bounce back. Actually a good lineup from Fredo tonight.

Bat Masterson

July 2nd, 2012
3:33 pm

I enjoyed the blog, DOB. Thanks

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

unbelievale – I hope Fredi is in more danger than Wren is….

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

tony austin

July 2nd, 2012
3:31 pm

Don’t underestimate the Cubs and the ability of the Braves offense not to hit that Cy Young contending rotation. Smardija (I don’t know if that’s how you spell his name, but if it’s not I don’t feel like looking up the correct spelling) and Malholm will own this offense. Just have to hope the Braves staff can hold the Cubs to a run or two per game.

That is why this is a Trap Series! We Should have no problem beating the AAA Iowa Cubs…But I said that when the Braves went to Wrigley….

Series Like These Worry the Hell out of me, because a series loss here could make a nasty impact on weather or not we make the playoffs….

Play Every series as If its your last!

DawgDad

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

I’d be looking to unload Uggla but the possibility of getting a player back to do what Uggla SHOULD be doing in the middle of the order is remote, if not completely implausible.

Right now I’d be hitting Jones fourth, followed by Freeman, Simmons, McCann/Ross, and Uggla. If Uggla starts hitting then move him up – he is a very streaky sort, but he’s also proven capable of NOT hitting for four months at a stretch.

There’s no way I’d go all-in to win this year with the Braves salary constraints and demonstrated ability. Wren needs to be building for the future, and to do that he needs to add young talent. They’ll want to hang around in case the Nats collapse, but other teams like the Mets are going to give the Braves fits. Don’t count the Phils out; they can buy players (like Greinke).

Heisenberg

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

What really needs an upgrade is the bench. That was clear those 2 weeks when Chipper, Freeman, & BMac were all out of the lineup (but not on DL) and bench guys not named Ross were thrown into everyday roles.

TennesseePaul

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

Last 9 Starts of the Starting 9

_________AVG__OBP__SLG___OPS_wOBA_L9S9+
Bourn__ .243 .295 .351 0.647 .302 ___66
Prado__ .400 .452 .629 1.081 .451 __174
Heyward .351 .375 .622 0.997 .415 __150
Chipper .313 .421 .531 0.952 .438 __143
Uggla__ .125 .263 .156 0.419 .181 ___12
Freeman .394 .447 .576 1.023 .421 __161
McCann_ .158 .179 .184 0.364 .147 ___-6
Simmons .353 .361 .559 0.920 .413 __132
Hanson_ .000 .056 .000 0.056 .038 __-84

McFann :Ô: :Ô: :ô:

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

Thanks for the new Blog, Chief. Those are some crazy stats on BMac and Ross…

Hot dang—BMac’s batting 7th?? Lordy…he hasn’t started a game in that spot since 2008, and only did it once that year (April 6th, 2008, against Johan Santana—BMac went 1-3 with a Double)…

Aye-yi-yi… :(

ncbravesfan

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

“This Team is too Talented on Paper to be 41-37…I’m still taking it to Vegas that The Braves go 92-70″

Not seeing this team as one that can go 51-33 the rest of the way.

NickB

July 2nd, 2012
3:35 pm

Smardzia got lit up his last time out, hopefully his confidence is a little shakey

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:35 pm

kinda liking that lineup too

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:35 pm

unbelievable*

Shaun

July 2nd, 2012
3:35 pm

Really? There are folks within the industry that think Frank Wren will be blamed if the Braves fail to reach the postseason this year after last season’s collapse? Let’s hope Braves’ decision makers are smarter than that. And if they do indeed decide to let Wren go, let’s hope they have someone even better in mind, because Wren has been a pretty good GM.

Efrim

July 2nd, 2012
3:35 pm

but some in the industry believe that a second straight failure to reach the postseason could jeopardize GM Frank Wren. – Rosenthal

If they miss this year and next, it’s fair to wonder on Frank. Not saying he should be replaced, but I won’t kill folks for bringing it up. All depends on the next 15 months.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:36 pm

I’m even Keeled on Fredi…

However his approval rating is slipping by the day…and studies reveal that his approval rating by the in-game bloggers shows a larger percentage of disapproval?

TennesseePaul

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

Freeman lacks the range to be one of the best defensive firstbasemen

He needs to run faster. If he was a burner his range would be better. He could cover all of the right side of the field. That’s what’s needed in a first baseman anyway. Until the team gets that, just be prepared to deal with a lumbering giant doing splits over at the bag.

Bravesfan54

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

Please tell me that “giving up any prospects” is completely off the table. Those who fail to learn from their mistakes, are condemned to repeat them. We are still paying the Texeira “tax” (or is that merely a “penalty”) for goodness sakes.

Frank from KS (now in CO)

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

DawgDad – Uggla ain’t going no where, at least i hope not….

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

ncbravesfan

July 2nd, 2012
3:34 pm

“This Team is too Talented on Paper to be 41-37…I’m still taking it to Vegas that The Braves go 92-70″—Thawkin

“Not seeing this team as one that can go 51-33 the rest of the way.”

They are talented enough to make that kind of a run…since we have not seen this team click on all cylinders yet

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

as if blogger approval means a damn thing…..

Ward

July 2nd, 2012
3:37 pm

Hello everyone! Just got back from buying a whole lot of Fire Works, and getting ready for the fourth. Oh, we are going to have some fun that night. I agree Garza, and Dempster, or Liriano would be better for the Braves in the long run. Since Prado is playing well in LF. I decided to say go get Headley for 3rd. Later on worry about Quentin, and Josh Willingham.

TheOnlyBravesFan

July 2nd, 2012
3:38 pm

My 3:29 was sarcasm, more to the McCann crowd (cough cough, you know who you are lol, no offense meant). And yes, that’s a good reason Jimmy :lol:

Efrim

July 2nd, 2012
3:38 pm

Shaun, if they miss the playoffs this year, add to the team for 2013 and miss again…….

That’d be 1 playoff(wild card) appearance in 6 years at the helm for Wren.

Scuba Steve

July 2nd, 2012
3:38 pm

Shaun…you are an idiot…do you know how many runs Freeman saves with his scoops at first from bad throws. There is more to being a good defensive first baseman than “range”, which isn’t as bad as you say.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:38 pm

Why are we Ripping Fab 5 Freddie’s Defense???

Really?

Dude saves More Throws in the Dirt than any 1st baseman I have seen…

Fab 5 Freddie’s Defense is the least of our problems

TennesseePaul

July 2nd, 2012
3:39 pm

So, which lineup is correct, DOB’s or that tweet Ef posted.

Tomahawkin

July 2nd, 2012
3:39 pm

Scuba Steve

“Shaun…you are an idiot…do you know how many runs Freeman saves with his scoops at first from bad throws”

ouch

TheOnlyBravesFan

July 2nd, 2012
3:40 pm

McCann’s numbers are embarassing, so are Uggla’s but at least he has some OBP….

might need to bite the bullet and drop McCann today from my fantasy teams, he’s hurt me enough. I need RBIs and runs dammit! :(

nolie

July 2nd, 2012
3:40 pm

do you know how many runs Freeman saves with his scoops at first from bad throws…scuba

there are other first baseman with just as good a glove, freeman is very good at it but he is certainly not the only one who is

Add your comment