1:25 pm July 5, 2012, by David O'Brien
Fire Fredi Gonzalez!
July 5th, 20121:30 pm
About time. Hopefully he gets the rest/attention he needs and can come back to being close to the way he was before this year.
July 5th, 20121:34 pm
Wait… so why was our manager sending him out for 2 months while hurt (and pitching terribly)?
Now if we could put Uggla Hinske and Brian McFann on that list, we might win some games??
July 5th, 20121:35 pm
Good point Drew!!!
July 5th, 20121:36 pm
1st What Hendog?????????????????
July 5th, 20121:38 pm
guy has been pitching great this season ….. this was completely out of left field, did not see it coming at all
July 5th, 20121:40 pm
Sounds like this should have been a while ago.
What pitcher have you been watching Hmmmm??
July 5th, 20121:41 pm
Impingement???? Is that slang for crappy mechanics??? Or overuse by the braves coaching the two seasons prior?
Darn it! Now I can’t keep running him out there. Bring Livan back- better yet, bring back Jamie Easterly, Preston Hanna, or Adrian Devine! If I had them- well you know what I’d do, now don’t you?!
Coach (2012 Fredi's Beisbol Fandango)
The front office and on field management have their collective heads up their collective butts.
July 5th, 20121:42 pm
What he’s been awful this year. The braves are falling behind and apart
F. WREN + Freddie G. = Loosing
July 5th, 20121:43 pm
I think that we need a new manager and a new GM. Watched Wren make to many questionable moves and we all know Freddie G. is a sub-par manager at best. Guy blew a 8.5 game lead last year (over used J. Venters (had tommy John, manager should have taken it easy on the poor guy) and continues to dumb stuff game after game. Freddie’s most recent stupid move: Use Kris Medlen for multiple innings when the game wasn’t close tues. night. Hey Freddie, when the game became a blow out either way, don’t use your most consistent arm out of your bull pen. Bring in a mop up specialist and call it a day. Save a young mans arm for more important games. Especially considering he came off surgery the year before.
any of you clowns who think Freddie is a good manager, are sipping on too much DOB kool-aid
rev buddy greene
July 5th, 20121:44 pm
this is no surprise at all Freddi killed his elbow last season and this season he is completely ineffective….before the pitch to arod i was telling people its only a matter of time before venters and dr james andrews are mentioned in the same breath….this article is the first step in that….sucks but venters is done until next september in my opinion.
July 5th, 20121:46 pm
OK DOB, time for the tough questions! Cant keep letting this slide by! We depend on you to bring it to us with the upmost honesty!!!!! Ask the tough questions big guy!
July 5th, 20121:47 pm
Just to clarify, Luis Avilan is not Dominican, He is from Venezuela.
I am his aunt.
July 5th, 20121:48 pm
I blame Freddie with it,he messed him up last year with all those appearance,it was just too much work on his arm.I smell a second Tommy John surgery just around the corner.Thanks stupid Freddie for messing up our pitchers,it is a matter of time before Freddie will mess up Avilan,Vavaro,EOF,and the rest of our young pitchers.
Heavy workload catches up to Jonny Venters and his elbow | HardballTalk
July 5th, 20121:50 pm
[...] O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution notes that there has never been any talk of Venters being hurt until now, but there have been signs [...]
July 5th, 20121:51 pm
I really don’t think where Avilan is from, he too will be one of those “young arms” that never pans out. Look at his AA record, less than impressive!
July 5th, 20121:53 pm
So apparently Gonzalez and McDowell were the last to know that Venters has been hurt….been pretty obvious to the rest of the free world
July 5th, 20121:55 pm
Freddie and McDowell thought Johnnie had a great “Dirt ball!!!
July 5th, 20121:56 pm
what happened to the farm system that used to turn out terrific pitchers throughout the 90s???
pitching wins games….which is why the braves can’t win..
July 5th, 20121:57 pm
Someone go check if Ferry wants to run the Braves on the side.
Further evidence that the collective management of the Braves is not functioning as a cohesive unit. Someone needs to use a firm hand and take charge of this organization.
July 5th, 20121:58 pm
Len Barker is still up there in northeastern Ohio, waiting for that phone to ring. Frank, if you wait too long to do this, some other team may swoop in to get him.
July 5th, 20122:00 pm
Braves fans send best wishes to Luis Avilan and family.
Tell him to go for it!!
Is this a real injury, or one of those trumped up injuries to say he has arm fatigue.
July 5th, 20122:01 pm
OK DOB, time for the tough questions! Cant keep letting this slide by! — Rick
Letting it “slide by”? I (and plenty of other reporters) have asked Venters many times whether he’s hurt, have asked Fredi Gonzalez many times whether Venters is hurt, have asked how long they will keep using him when he’s this bad (I asked that specifically last night). We can’t dictate how they answer. Can only report what their answers are and, in a case like today, how they appear to contradict with reality.
July 5th, 20122:02 pm
Got to tip your cap to Johnny V for pitching through the pain. We can always find another arm. Now let me get back to my homework. OPS is slugging plus on base percentage. Did not know that. These saber metrics are so confusing. I did not become a manager so I’d have to relearn math. I hated math and school and I hate it now.
First question to Fredi, when did you find out Johnny was hurt.
July 5th, 20122:03 pm
There are good reasons bloggers here aren’t and won’t be managers. If a guy has a bad month, or looks bad over a short period, the cries are out to trade ‘em, push ‘em back to the minors, or outright release them. Many of these people are the ones who last year were demanding Fredi dump Heyward. Trip to the DL are not part of anyone’s managerial scheme, and Fredi is not an idiot, and while it’s fair to question some of his moves, few of them are as radically witless as suggested by bloggers. And already someone has concluded that Avilan will be no good without his throwing a single pitch in the bigs. Jeez, what a bunch of whiners who seem to know relatively little about real-life managing
July 5th, 20122:06 pm
Be there soon!!!!!
July 5th, 20122:07 pm
Not sure what goes on behind close doors these days in Atlanta, but earlier you had JJ unhappy with not knowing what the Braves plans were for him – Lack of Communication.
Now, you have Fredi saying one thing last night about Venters, while at the same time he is DL’d. Either someone other than Fredi knew he was hurt, Fredi knew he was hurt, or Venters really isn’t hurt and this is just a ‘you suck and worn out’ move. Either way, lack of communication amongst players and management, and that is bad news.
July 5th, 20122:11 pm
Anyone out there know where Mickey Mahler is? I hear he may still have something left. Also, what about Chris Reitsma, or Chopper Campbell! I’m looking into re-signing Mike Hampton.
July 5th, 20122:13 pm
Both beat writers were severely questioning Venters even being in last night’s game. I won’t even bring up the ‘injury’ but the fact that Johnny has been allowing inherited runners to score at a bad rate…that’s not the time for Fredi to “put him in a situation where he can succeed” pitching in consecutive days.
I’m highly doubting Fredi’s managerial capabilities at this point. The collapse in 2011 was one thing. Continual blunders in knowing when and when not to bunt, who to bring in out of the bullpen, taking starters out too early or too late… this stuff has to change soon, doesn’t it?
July 5th, 20122:14 pm
Way too much much work last season, You can’t pitch every day, It has been evident for some time that Venters had some kind of arm problem, But FG kept sending him out there with the same results, Makes me wonder if FG has any idea of what he’s doing, I think this organization is headed down the tubes, FW has not had the success of his predesessor and the Owners don’t seem to give a damn, I really don’t think the Braves will turn things around as long as Liberty Media owns them.
July 5th, 20122:16 pm
F.Wren + Freddi G. = “Loosing”:
Hey genius, perhaps you should learn how to spell before you accuse others of being clowns!
oh come now! Havana Fats has NO clue as to what’s going on. Ever watch him DURING a game? Just staring off into space. Recall Prado’s almost terminal infection last year? Fredi didn’t even know about until almost too late. Players won’t confide in him because they know he’s a moron…like pointy haired boss in “Dilbert”.
Large Charlie Kerfeld
July 5th, 20122:19 pm
First Wohlers, then Rocker, and now Venters. Is Kimbrell next?
“Frank Wren”…I think Roger Craig and Johnny Podres might still be alive. Why not run them out there & see how they do? (or wheel ‘em)
July 5th, 20122:20 pm
FBGuy wrote, “and Fredi is not an idiot….” You have to tip your cap to someone who’s as loyal to the manager as that.
There’s an impostor using my name on the blog!
Thanks man. I was surprised and glad to see the question from last night. Would be interesting to know more about the injury and when exactly everyone found out.
July 5th, 20122:21 pm
I seriously doubt he’s injured. It’s about “saving face”. They are shutting him down for a while, without the embarrassment. If he was in fact injured they would’nt have been sending him to lose games day in and day out.
July 5th, 20122:22 pm
DOB: not trying to suck up, but as someone who has been somewhat critical of Braves reporters in the past, I have to again give you props for asking pretty tough and challenging questions. I mean, you have been putting it to Fredi pretty hard lately. The fact that he has been mostly vague, evasive, and non-commital is on him – not you. I can imagine that when sitting across from some of these guys and getting the responses you get, you just want to sigh or say something snarky like “seriously dude?” But you can’t.
You’re doing a good job. Keep it up. And keep with the subtle pressure on Fredi. Eventually he will have to come up with some answers.
Trying to be unbiased
July 5th, 20122:24 pm
As a lifelong Braves fan (35 years) I will say that losing Cox and replacing him with Fredi has been a tough pill to swallow. In terms of tactics I sometimes disagreed with Cox, but knew at the end of the day Bobby was a guy I wanted to lead the team. He represented a somewhat antiquated style that was less reliant on the numbers and more reliant on experience. I hoped Fredi would have adopted the positive qualities I saw in Cox, but i have not seen much evidence of that so far. I’m sure he is a nice guy in the clubhouse, but I havent warmed up to him. Johnny V was used so often last year that I’m sure it brought about this arm issue. However, to be consistent I think Cox would have used him with the same frequency. Perhaps Venters should have let on that he was ailing this year if he didn’t. His velocity was good, but his results were not.
July 5th, 20122:25 pm
The Venters move is smoke screen cause the dude has lost it.
I knew as soon as he came in last night we were gonna give it up.
Cubs pitching is suddenly stellar and every pitcher they have is Sandy Kofax.
The Cubs ARE THE WORST TEAM IN THE NL and WE CAN T BEAT THEM!!!!!!!!!!
Chipper made some pointed comments about guys not showing up and playing hard everyday. Its sad really. Drop those Uggla and Mcann down to 7th and 8th. Put them in there PROPER place.
Move ANDREL up. He is hittin for high average.
Let Bourne ,Prado,Heyward,Chipper,and Andrelton hit in the high spots. Maybe they can generate enough hits to win some. Freemans hurt so he is not gonna hit.
We are scrued for POWER. And this season seems to b in vain right now. We should be better than the Mets. I mean c’mon.
July 5th, 20122:28 pm
Felt/feels like venters was hiding something trying to be the Marlboro man.
“Avilan, 22…The Dominican has a 21-30 record and 3.42 ERA in 143 games (53 starts) over seven minor league seasons, with 375 strikeouts and 154 walks in 424 innings.”
Started in the minors at 15???
Brave New World
July 5th, 20122:30 pm
Sorry to hear Venters is hurt, but this explains volumes about the way his pitching has dropped off from last year. Here’s hoping Mr. Venters returns to his dominant pitching.
July 5th, 20122:32 pm
This is on Venters. He is the one responsible for letting his boss[es] know when something is physically wrong with his arm/shoulder, but he did not. Why? Who knows? Maybe he was scared that something bad would be found and he kept trying to put it off.
He should realize that he was hurting his team as well as himself. If it really turns out to be something serious… I’m praying for you Johnny.
In the 9 games prior to June 10 (12-4 loss to Toronto), Braves went 8-1. Since then, 8-14. When Fredi made it clear he was ok with the team losing that day, he sent a VERY bad message to the team. He should have been fired right then!
July 5th, 20122:33 pm
Venters was totally unhittable for most of last year….but totally overused by Freddy to the point where…at the end of the year…it was obvious somethting was wrong. Then…..this year….it was obvious to everyone except Freddy….that something was still wrong. It was obvious in the spring when he just wasn’t the same. What a shame. I certainly hope Venters gets better, rests, and comes back strong….but probably after another reconstructive surgery….he has already had one, I believe.
July 5th, 20122:35 pm
Braves, for the love of baseball… SELL. Trade Bourn, trade Uggla, trade McCann. Keep Heyward, Prado, Simmons, Freeman, and most of all Kimbrell. Don’t waste any more money this season trying to convince yourselves and your fans that spending money on players like Ben Sheets will make any difference, because it won’t. Sure he may be good for a couple of starts, but it’s time to rebuild.
July 5th, 20122:38 pm
DOB: good to see you responding. Have you heard anything about McCann’s vision problems? He squints and bugs his eyes at the plate. It is obvious he is having vision issues. Please ask!
To boston bravo- if I were Freddie, I’d tip my cap to your suggestions! Seriously, Chris Paranto and I are in serious ngotiations as I speak. I hear Troy Glaus may still be available, and Jim Bouton wants one more shot- what do you’ll think? Freddie says he’d like to run them out there- but only in situations where they can suceed!
Please go to MLB.com and vote for Bourn. If you have a Twitter account, please tweet #VoteBourn. Every tweet counts as a vote. We have him in second place already and voting ends at 4:00PM today.
July 5th, 20122:39 pm
You know I never really liked Bobby Cox and his Yankee hit all home run ball type of play. However when jerks like Henski swings like he never sees the ball (lucky if he hits anything) he would be outta here with Bobby managing. I can hand it to him, he could tell a washed up player when he sees one. For the pitching Delgado has such a straight fastball, even I could hit it. Get him outta here also. Medlen is being used wrong, he should be a starter. He cannot be a long reliever. Some guys have that some do not, that is why he has let inherited runners score. Another thing about the bullpen, the stupid decisions of keeping a lot of Latin players in the bullpen, even though they do not need to be in the majors seems like discrimination FOR Latin players FROM a Latin manager. When is Wren going to wake up.
July 5th, 20122:40 pm
You all just don’t understand. It’s Liberty Media’s fault, not Freddie’s or mine. And please, take it easy on Freddie, he is a nice guy.
Good luck to Jonny. I hope he gets well soon and is back to his nearly-unhittalbe self. The Braves will sure need him back in the bullpen. Congrats to Avilan on his call-up.
July 5th, 20122:42 pm
I think the sportswriters, broadcasters, etc. are beginning to figure out what most of us already knew! They were all just in denial, or didn’t want to “rock the boat”.
July 5th, 20122:43 pm
If you remember Cox used the hound out of Johnny before Freddie. Johnnie is a hoss and I hope he gets well with rest. Most relievers are variable in performance. Just look at Billy Wagner’s career.
All those Freddie haters go coach a little league team and see what you have to balance to have a good team then come back and complain.
I have been a Freddie G fan until I heard him ramble on about a bunch of crap the other night on the radio pre game show. He made no sense what so ever. I think he doesn’t have a clue about anything. FIRE HIM NOW!!!!!
July 5th, 20122:44 pm
Everyone get off of Gonzalez case. It isn’t his fault that our pitching staff is a mockery of major leaguers.
It still feels to me like FG is a substitue teacher..can give the lesson plans, sits in the class to monitor the students…but doesn’t quite demand the respect the normal “real” teacher does. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if he is let go in the very near future.
July 5th, 20122:45 pm
Bobby Cox ran pitchers out there day in day out no matter how bad they were. So if he is a “Hall of Fame” manager…of course Fredi is doing the same things he was taught to do.
July 5th, 20122:46 pm
who ever said that DOB had been questioning Fredi hard must not have seen the BUNT question he lobbed to him.
July 5th, 20122:47 pm
It seems like every time there is an injury, or someone’s not performing to expectations, they come up with a new term or description for it. There have been 2 or 3 this year I had not heard of before, and honestly I have never heard the word “impingement” used in association with an injury. I know, they just do it to make it sound good, and legitimate!
July 5th, 20122:49 pm
You’ll can bad mouth me all you want, but you have to admit- I know how to TIP A CAP! Where is Buddy Carlyle- I want to run him out there.
I still say a managerial and pitching coach change will cure about 90% of the problems.
Out at the Plate
July 5th, 20122:50 pm
This is a blow … even though Venters has been a disaster much of the year. It’s just deflating.
Obviously, he was overworked last year. But despite JV’s failures this year, Fredi (and Roger) ran him out there in half the games. I hope he’s just got a tired arm, but the signage is not positive. And our best hope to replace him is a 7-year minor leaguer who never got beyond AA?
Wren approached the off season by saying that September was an aberration. We all heard his pollyanna story: We get everyone back and “we like our club.”
The truth is he had no plan for 2012. Every season is a new deal; pitchers go down – Beachy, Venters, etc. Look at Mariano Rivera. The Yankees roll on anyway. People slump (McCann, Uggla).
Wren knows this. He knows he’s handcuffed by finances. TELL THE TRUTH, FRANK.
July 5th, 20122:51 pm
Slowhiteguy: That’s an excellent analogy. I tip my cap to your astute observation.
But that is just on the defensive side of the ball. Enter your comments here
July 5th, 20122:52 pm
This team without Chipper is scary awful. Next year could be seriously bleak. We have no power and we won’t have Bourne to get on base. Mike Bourne is playing big right now so his agents can show him the money after or at the end of this season.
They are hard to watch right now.
If it were not for Chippers last season, I think we would be in the bottom.
And please this bench has to be THE WORST in MLB this year.
Dreadful. They all need to retire.
Homer the Brave
July 5th, 20122:53 pm
Is it odd that Avilan was promoted directly from AA when we still have players like Gearrin, Chapman, Flande, and Carlyle at AAA?
July 5th, 20122:54 pm
Love this kid, but 40 appearances this season is tough in 81 games. 79 in 2010 and 85 last year is a lot. I hope it’s not serious, but with that kind of work over the last 2 & 1/2 years, it was bound to happen.
Keep running em out there Freddi!!!!
July 5th, 20122:56 pm
ideasbm, yeah right. Cox kept running Troy Glaus out there and other vets without giving younger guys a chance. This is why guys like Schafer, Andrus, Melke, and many others, do better when they get away. Braves simply don’t give them much of a chance.
Same thing this year. No need to sign Livan. Braves had Flande with a 0.00 ERA in spring but we sign the bum Livan.
Wren, the spokesman for the Braves top management, annually sells us the propaganda about the depth of and the superiority of our pitching throughout the system. He sells us this because it glorifies the so called brain trust and is in reality nothing more than self-aggrandizement. These people can not judge talent. There are plenty of teams with harder throwers and plenty of teams with greater power hitters and plenty of teams with better records. If we had local ownership heads would be rolling.
“Ace” you must be referring to the one just the other night in which there was a runner on first and second, no outs, and he sends Hinske up to hit, rather than Hudson or Jurrgens, who are both good bunters. That was the worst one of all pertaining to scoring runs every chance given. I think, if I remember right that Hinske flew out to CF, and if he had been bunted over to third, there was another flyout that would have scored him. I noticed too that FG wasn’t asked specifically why he didn’t bunt in that situation. Here’s the way the question to him was worded, “The way your bench is composed, is there much you can do besides have Hinske swing away?” Of course, that gave FG an out there and all he did was basically dodge the question.
July 5th, 20122:57 pm
Good bye Freddie. Hello Terry. Should have been TP’s job to start with.
Ah yes, the old Elbow Impingement. Braves code for he needs a break.
Get well soon Johnny. Hope you correct whatever it is hurting you during the next 2 weeks. They’re goign to need you.
July 5th, 20122:59 pm
Sons of Rick Matula
Fredi makes the comment that he was trying to use Venters in a situation where he had a chance to succeed.
Then explain why he didn’t start the inning with JV rather than bring him in with man on second and no out. At his best, Venters has to rely on the slider down. He’s not at his best these days. He wild pitches one run in. he’s upset and leaves the next slider up. HR.
Now we find out his problem is a shoulder impingement. (which is a nice way of saying his rotator cuff is f’nort).
An impingement is an irritation.
As a manager, Fredi is an impingement.
July 5th, 20123:01 pm
Either Fredi is completely clueless, or he’s practicing for a career in politics.
July 5th, 20123:02 pm
My guess is Venters is not hurt.. just needs to straighten out his form/mechanics.
If the Braves can ever get a solid year out of 50% of their key players, they’d be awesome.
July 5th, 20123:03 pm
If he were a righthander, they probably demote him, but he’s a lefty so it’s DL.
This is just how the Braves operate.
July 5th, 20123:05 pm
I saw this coming! I called it! You people need to listen to me. See, Venters is a turn and drive pitcher but now his hips are flying open before he plants his right foot. That’s putting stress on his elbow and taking mph’s off his fastball because his rotation through the arm slot is not fluid. If he were a push and stride pitcher like a Nolan Ryan, this wouldn’t be an issue. Back when I was pitching, even catchers would pick up on this tendency. It’s too bad the Braves don’t have anyone who can coach Johnny through this mechanical breakdown. I saw it coming.
July 5th, 20123:07 pm
The only issue I have with Fredi is the lineup. He has made some bad decisions and it has cost us games. But honestly, this team has to play better. You cant blame him for McCann, Uggla, and Freeman struggling. You cant blame him for not bringing in runners when we have the bases loaded with no or one out. You cant fault him for our team taking the lead and in the next inning give it right back. The fact remains this team is just not playing good, consistent baseball. When they get 3 or 4 runs behind, the game is virtually over. Its just no fight.
We need a game changer on offense and a reliable ace on the pitching staff. But where do you put the bat? Freddi is not going anywhere. Uggla is not, nor is McCann. Chipper is here for the year and you cant put anyone in the outfield. So what can you do? These guys have to hit and come up clutch or you can mark this season down as a complete failure.
July 5th, 20123:08 pm
i just think the league has figured him out. He can’t/doesn’t throw strikes. Simple approach really; Just stand there and watch until he has to throw fastball down the middle.
July 5th, 20123:09 pm
“Frank Wren” thanks. No, don’t want any part of Glaus…maybe “Brooksie” is available?? Straight trade Brooksie for “SIMMY” and if it gets sticky toss in “BOURNY”.
BTW…Podres is dead. But they are doing great work in human reanimation.
I’m available if you guys need me
We practiced bunting one time in spring training- let’s not overdue it! If Hinske ever gets another hit, you’ll be eating your words. I think I might bench Simmons, and run Jack Wilson out there!
July 5th, 20123:15 pm
Okay, just got to address this: Freddie is FREEMAN. Gonzales is FREDI. Get your Fred’s right, please.
impingement is code word for possible tommy john surgery
July 5th, 20123:17 pm
To Greg Norton- get down to the stadium tonight. I’ll run you out there! Didn’t you hit .103 your last year, but Bobby kept running you out there, didn’t he? You remind me of Hinske, except you stunk from both sides of the plate!
July 5th, 20123:20 pm
If I don’t know better than to keep “running” Minor out there, how do you expect me to get my Freddies straight! If Greg Norton gets down to the park tonight, I’ll bench Freeman, and put Norton on first. Then I’ll have him hit next to McOut and Struggla- what do you think of that Murderers row!?
Jason's Sweet Cheeks
July 5th, 20123:23 pm
The whole d…./ team STINKS. Sell them all.
July 5th, 20123:24 pm
I’m thinking about trading Prado for Nate McClouth- agree or disagree? Freddie wants to run McClouth out there and bench Bourn.
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