Chipper says he won’t reconsider retirement

He leads the Braves in batting average (.317), on-base percentage (.394) and slugging percentage (.513), and in his past 30 games he’s hit .368 with 13 doubles, five homers and 22 RBIs.

Braves Jones BaseballSo, Chipper Jones, are you having any second thoughts, any reservations whatsoever, about your plan to retire after the season?

“No,” the 40-year-old third baseman replied Sunday morning.

So there you have it.

Every other week or so, Jones passes one great player or another on some career statistical list – George Brett and Mike Schmidt on the RBI list for third basemen, Pete Rose on the extra-base-hits list for switch-hitters, etc. – and he’s already surpassed the overall expectations that most of us had for his final season, hasn’t he?

I mean, seriously, even considering the fact that he’s getting a couple of days off every week, did anyone believe Jones could do what he’s doing at age 40? Batting .317 with a team-best .907 OPS, 10 homers and 47 RBIs in 68 games?

And how many would blame him if he started to think, hey, why not at least crack open the door on the possibility of returning for one more season with the Braves, make it an even 20?

Not happening, Jones said. Oh, and he said at least one person thought he could play at this level in 2012.

“I thought I was fully capable of doing what I’m doing,” he said. “In fact, I told my agent [B.B. Abbott] in spring training. He told me, ‘You can’t back-track on this [retirement decision]. If you’ve got 20 homers and you’re hitting .300 and you’ve got 80 or 90 RBIs, you can’t second-guess yourself.’ And I said, well, I’m going to have those numbers, and I’m ready to leave.

“I’m ready to move on.”

Jones started the season on the DL recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery he had in the last week of spring training. He hurt that knee literally an hour before the previously scheduled press conference to announce his retirement after the season.

He returned without a rehab assignment and homered in his second at-bat of his first game back, leading the Braves to a win at Houston to snap their four-game skid that had begun their season in his absence.

He also had a later stint on the DL for a grotesque bruise and hematoma on his lower left leg after being hit by a smoked one-hopper off the bat of Tampa Bay’s B.J. Upton, an injury that eventually required another surgical procedure to drain the blood and pus from the wound.

And yet he’s remained productive when he’s in the lineup, and since getting strength back in his legs he’s been on a roll. Since May 1, Jones has hit .335 with 23 extra-base hits, 35 RBIs and a .945 OPS in 53 games.

He ranks third on the team with a .296 average with runners in scoring position – first with a .422 OBP – and Jones has hit .446 (25-for-56) when leading off innings, with a .500 OBP that ranks second in the majors in those situations.

He has 274 plate appearances, which before Sunday was 57 shy of the 3.1 per team game required for rankings in many major statistical categories. If Jones had enough PAs, he would rank ninth in the National League in batting average and eighth in OBP.

For some perspective, his .907 OPS is two points lower than Prince Fielder’s and nine lower than Josh Hamilton’s.

Some around baseball have even suggested he could play at least another year or two in the NL and possibly more in the AL, where the designated hitter would save some wear and tear on those surgically scarred and chronically sore knees.

Not going to happen, Jones said. But he does allow that it’s good to know people believe he could keep playing.

“Yeah, it’s nice to have people saying that,” he said. “It’s nice that people aren’t saying, ‘You should have done it two or three years ago.’ The fact that people are saying I should stay, that I could still be effective, that’s kind of what I was shooting for.”

There are, of course, some critics who insist Jones should have retired two or three years ago, despite the memorable moments he’s produced and games he’s helped the Braves win this season.

Hank and Chipper.

Hank and Chipper.

“Well, no matter what you do you’re not going to make everybody happy,” he said. “I’ve got two wives that will attest to that, you know? But it doesn’t matter what game you play or how you play it, you’re not going to please everybody. So you take the good with the bad and just try to go about your business and not worry about the naysayers.

“You play for the people who support you, and for your family and your teammates. And everybody else…” [dismissive wave of his hand].

Even if Jones wanted to reconsider retirement plans – and to be clear, he doesn’t – it would be a potentially awkward situation, given that the Braves are now selling ticket plans for the remainder of the season built around it being his final months with the team, packages that include special Chipper Jones prints. Another company is selling commemorative Chipper Jones bats on TV for $99.95 (“limited to 5,000 pieces,” the ad says, which would be about a half-million bucks if I’m not mistaken).

I mentioned to Chipper something about the Braves’ marketing of those tickets and prints.

“You take that with a grain of salt,” he said. “It’s a nice gesture, I think, that they have that commemorative stuff. Like I said, my mind’s made up.”

But all that stuff would make it difficult to reconsider even if he wanted to, right? Can’t go back now?

“No, I can’t,” he said, with no regret whatsoever in his voice.

No Brett Favre retirement second acts are coming?

“No,” Jones said, as he signed a few baseballs and jerseys for opponents and others who’d sent them over to have signed.

BRAVES LINEUP

  1. Bourn CF
  2. Prado LF
  3. Heyward RF
  4. Jones 3B
  5. Freeman 1B
  6. Uggla 2B
  7. Ross C
  8. Janish SS
  9. Medlen P

• OK, let’s close this and get it up before first pitch. Braves’ Kris Medlen making his second start today against Houston’s Bud Norris, who is 0-7 with a 7.10 ERA in his past 10 starts. The Astros scored three or fewer runs while he was in all 10 games, including two or fewer in eight and one or none in five.

We’ll close with an early career tune from the legendary Waylon Jennings, which you can hear by clicking here.

waylon-jennings_1972_cmickrock1

“THIS TIME” by Waylon Jennings

This time if you want me to come back, it’s up to you
But remember I won’t allow the things you used to do
You’re gonna have to toe the mark and walk the line
This time will be the last time

This time if I should feel unwanted, I won’t stay
Each tomorrow will depend on the love you give today
It’s all up to you to keep in mind
This time will be the last time

This time should be anything like the other times
This time will be the last time

If this time should be anything like the other times
This time will be the last time

– by David O’Brien, Braves/MIB blog

681 comments Add your comment

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
1:35 pm

I don’t blame Chipper. He’s probably burned out. Plus it’s ruined two of his marriages.

BFChris27

August 5th, 2012
1:36 pm

Thanks for new blog!!!!!!!

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
1:40 pm

Nice way to begin the game for Medlen.

DAM

August 5th, 2012
1:42 pm

I have always REALLY liked Medlen and wanted him in the rotation to begin the season. I wish we could figure out a way to keep him in the rotation permanently.

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
1:45 pm

Bourn sure strikes out a lot for a leadoff guy. Need him to pick it up some.

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
1:46 pm

The strike outs have to stop for Bourn.

Nerdbucket Moylan

August 5th, 2012
1:46 pm

Random thought: Why don’t we let Ross catch Hanson? 2 days a week of Ross isn’t so bad. He’s a high obp producers and mac has shown a propensity to slow down or even get injured late in seasons.

Kat

August 5th, 2012
1:47 pm

This is not good…

MiaBchBravesFan

August 5th, 2012
1:48 pm

Chipper’s ability to adjust this season shows what an amazing hitter he’s always been. The injuries have been frustrating for him moreso than any single person on this blog. That said, his hitting knowledge is nothing short of Williams-esque. He has been stroking big hits all season long – when health has allowed – using his upper body almost exclusively. His strength is especially apparent on his dingers and doubles, where he hits ‘em using all arms and upper body, as his ravaged legs do not allow him to drive like he used. His performance has been nothing short of courageous, and his lineup presence has been the most critical cog this year for the Braves. Without Chipper, the Braves are a sub-.500 team.

Regardless of what happens this season team-wise, his performance this season codifies Chipper as the greatest ATLANTA Brave hitter since 1966.

Bravefaninok

August 5th, 2012
1:49 pm

Put some antiseptic on that…

The A Bomb

August 5th, 2012
1:49 pm

Get the cut taken care of ASAP with his history.

Larry

August 5th, 2012
1:49 pm

As he shouldn’t…

Last night he couldn’t prevent a double by a ball that bounced THREE times before passing 3rd base and he looked absolutely pale, winded and was grimacing after running only about 80 feet from first to second on a hit and run.

Good, natural hitter but has done nothing for years to condition his body…inexcusable for a professional athlete annually cashing $14,000,000.00 in paychecks.

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
1:50 pm

Just got spiked. Thought he really got injured. We can breath now.

David O'Brien

August 5th, 2012
1:50 pm

Getting spiked and open cut like that gotta be bit more scary for a guy who had staph infection last year.

Kat

August 5th, 2012
1:51 pm

Phew.. looked worse.

Bravefaninok

August 5th, 2012
1:51 pm

Thanks DOB…Hoss is having a great season ….watch him drive in a couple right here!!!

Larry

August 5th, 2012
1:53 pm

“He’s probably burned out. Plus it’s ruined two of his marriages.”

I’d say an unzipped zipper, not baseball, ruined at least one!

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
1:54 pm

Let’s Go Braves!

Let’s choke again today against the worst team in baseball!

mpimentel

August 5th, 2012
1:54 pm

if chipper leave, who will be at 3b. next season…in minors leagues we haven’t it, in the bencho well not so much…maybe go to the FA list…but just for now we’re really enjoy the last act of larry…

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
1:55 pm

Atta boy Chipper!

That’s how it’s done!

Your turn, Freeman.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
1:56 pm

Atta boy Freeman!

Good job!!

Let’s Go Braves!!!

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
1:57 pm

This team needs to take advantage of their opportunities. They have squandered many opportunities to score in this series.

Fresh Meat

August 5th, 2012
1:58 pm

Call me crazy…but…I think the umps should just call “strikes” strikes…and “balls” balls…and forget about trying to speed the game up…by expanding the strike zone….no matter what our silly-azz announcers say.

Jerry

August 5th, 2012
1:58 pm

Whatever happened to taking a bad team and just beating the friggin snot out of them? Braves are missing that boat with the Astros.

TuffShhhtuff

August 5th, 2012
1:59 pm

Contrary to popular belief there are ways to score runs other than HRs, triples, and doubles.

Scottbravesfan

August 5th, 2012
2:01 pm

Larry you are an idiot. How in the hell do you know what Chipper’s conditioning program is? You go out when you are 40, with two ACL surgeries and do sprints and see how you hold up.

TuffShhhtuff

August 5th, 2012
2:02 pm

The game could easily be speeded up by allowing no more than 20secs between pitches, or call a ball, and stopping batters from stepping out between pitches to adjust everything from A to Z. Tell the pitcher to go ahead and pitch if the batter is out of the box, and call whatever the pitch actually is. Bet a lot of batters would stop that asinine slowdown crap!

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:02 pm

Whatever happened to taking a bad team and just beating the friggin snot out of them? Braves are missing that boat with the Astros.

Have these losers ever done such thing?

Last night was a f cking embarrassment and a testament to what awaits these losers if they even make it to the playoffs.

Fresh Meat

August 5th, 2012
2:03 pm

Bourn is headed back to his “norm”…which is 275/280…335/340 OBP…and 140 Ks. Hopefully…we won’t go long term with him & pay him waaaay too much $$. He is…what he is…..

Venice Jim

August 5th, 2012
2:04 pm

Better get Medlen up in the bullpen…oh, wait…

fan

August 5th, 2012
2:05 pm

JC Brave (Douche)

why don’t you go away, you are not a fan, you are a whiney little maroon who adds nothing to this blog..

BF54

August 5th, 2012
2:06 pm

Good work D O’B

Go Bravos

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:06 pm

Ok, I got that one out of my system.

Now I feel better… sort of…

I’ll be rational now.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:07 pm

“fan” <– retard.

David O'Brien

August 5th, 2012
2:07 pm

Gilmartin makes his second start for Gwinnett Braves today at 5 p.m.

BF54

August 5th, 2012
2:08 pm

Quality Humour abides

TuffShhhtuff

August 5th, 2012
2:08 pm

“TM” mentioned Bourn has to stop the strikeouts, so I looked it up. I was amazed to see how close Bourn is to Uggla. Uggs has 121 and Bourn 106. I would have thought Uggla had way more than MB.
OK, all you guys(me included) who have been jumping on Uggs has to do the same with MB. Bourn just has to start bunting more to get on base. With his speed he could do it at least twice a game. Lots of things can happen on a bunt.

fan

August 5th, 2012
2:08 pm

JC Brave (Douche)

your village called, they want you back..

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:09 pm

And so Dan Uggla’s afternoon begins…

David O'Brien

August 5th, 2012
2:09 pm

Ross goes OPPO!

Venice Jim

August 5th, 2012
2:09 pm

Bama Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:09 pm

ROSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

BFChris27

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

Rossy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Fresh Meat

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

These announcers can “gush” all they wish…Dan Uggla is COMPLETELY LOST…at the plate !!

BravesBobblehead42

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

Chipper Da Man!!! Go Braves!!!

Bravefaninok

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

Rossyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!! Damn first pitch hacking!!!!!

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

“fan” <— retard + moronic.

VaBravesFan

August 5th, 2012
2:10 pm

BF54

August 5th, 2012
2:11 pm

Roosssyyyy!!!

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
2:11 pm

That’s awesome. The Braves need to build on the Ross homer.

Kat

August 5th, 2012
2:12 pm

I saw someone post this on twitter yesterday…

“The Real Home Run King T-Shirt” .. love it!
http://www.strangecargo.com/the-real-homerun-king-shirt

BFChris27

August 5th, 2012
2:13 pm

Tigers Acquire Jeff Baker from Cubs

ijudgenot

August 5th, 2012
2:13 pm

If Uggla developed that stroke to right the Braves would be in great shape.

David O'Brien

August 5th, 2012
2:15 pm

McCann and David Ross have combined 12 homers and 27 RBIs in 28 games since July 4.

fan

August 5th, 2012
2:15 pm

JC Brave (Douche)

You’re the type of person who lights up the room by leaving it.

Jerry

August 5th, 2012
2:16 pm

The real homerun king is Barry Bonds until proven otherwise and stricken from the record books.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:17 pm

retard + moronic,

Yeah, I like changing broken light bulbs.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:18 pm

Did someone say steroids?

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
2:22 pm

I am ready for Michael Bourn to start getting on base again.

Braveone

August 5th, 2012
2:22 pm

From the previous blog which had 942 comments, nolie led the way with 72 posts. There were 106 different poster names. Here are the Top 25:

Rank Poster Frequency

1 nolie 72
2 Venice Jim 48
3 JC Brave 45
4 phil 36
5 Pace 31
6 David O’Brien 26
7 Lance 26
8 Bravefaninok 25
9 Veer 25
10 richbrave 24
11 Capt.Mudd 23
12 Hmmmm 23
13 SNEAKY PETE 23
14 Tomahawk Mafia 23
15 The A Bomb 22
16 ChattTownBrian 21
17 Bama Brave 20
18 MiaBchBravesFan 20
19 ACE 19
20 Disgusted 19
21 TheOnlyBravesFan 19
22 MikeInFl 17
23 Ward 17
24 Mixxo 15
25 Powderfinger 15

Jerry

August 5th, 2012
2:25 pm

Bout time someone walked and showed a little patience. Norris’s slider has not been thrown for a strike yet, or even been close, but we are swinging at it.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:27 pm

Hello all. They really need to improve on their hitting with runners on base. Especially runners in scoring position.

John in Wichita

August 5th, 2012
2:27 pm

I wonder whether Henry sometimes regrets playing an extra year. Certainly he didn’t play much that last year in Milwaukee. Have enjoyed some of the great moments Chipper has given us over the years and am glad he’s ready to go out on his terms.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:28 pm

I agree – I like that he’s going out on his terms and in a with a great season thus far….but how weird is it gonna be to NEVER see him at 3rd again?

John in Wichita

August 5th, 2012
2:30 pm

Oh… and Meds is off to another good start today. Can’t see Jair pitching much the rest of the way, but would there be an argument to go to a 6 man rotation with Delgado in September to save some guys?

Bama Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:30 pm

Bad Call On Heyward!!!!

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:30 pm

I can’t believe that piece of crap umpire called that a strike…

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
2:31 pm

Why did they keep sending Prado? He was exhausted after starting and stopping about 5 times. Plus that slider was off the plate to Heyward, the Braves really should have had two on with one out.

TuffShhhtuff

August 5th, 2012
2:31 pm

After that game Friday night, someone sneaked into the clubhouse and told the Astros, “you know you are playing the Braves, don’t you?”

Venice Jim

August 5th, 2012
2:31 pm

Adam LaRoche 2 more RBIs for a 4-0 lead… :(

David O'Brien

August 5th, 2012
2:32 pm

Didn’t look like a strike to Heyward, who was lucky that the ump had his head turned when Heyward rifled his helmet and bat afterward. That helmet bounced nearly to end of Braves dugout.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:32 pm

I realize that ball could have been a little bit more outside but I’m not sure how

Rob From SC

August 5th, 2012
2:33 pm

What a crap call on Heyward.. Would have needed a boat oar to hit that

TNScott

August 5th, 2012
2:33 pm

The Spirit of Eric Gregg lives on. A third strike call just like the one to Fred McGriff to end Game 5 of the ‘97 NLCS.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:36 pm

Got Janish, to Uggla, to Freeman going good for us

DAM

August 5th, 2012
2:36 pm

Seriously. Leave Medlen in the rotation.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:36 pm

Enter your comments here

Fresh Meat

August 5th, 2012
2:38 pm

With today’s technology…seems like it would easy enough to set up some kind of system (laser or whatever) JUST for calling balls & strikes. Take some of the guess-work out of it…for these plate umpires…and players.

Gone Viral

August 5th, 2012
2:38 pm

Whenever people say that they want umpires calling balls and strikes instead of computers, stuff like that pitch is why I think they’re crazy.

Watching tennis and baseball on the same day is particularly aggravating in this regard. Going from the working tech implemented flawlessly to Heyward getting called out on a pitch that hits a right-handed hitter is infuriating.

archie

August 5th, 2012
2:41 pm

One thing’s for sure: Kris Medlen is no Tommy Hanson. He gets people out.

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
2:42 pm

archie

That seems like a fair comparison. Medlen is at least much more efficient.

Fresh Meat

August 5th, 2012
2:42 pm

Bless their pea-pickin’ hearts….these announcers are doin’ all they can…to “prop up” Dan Uggla

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:42 pm

DAN UGGLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Right down the middle.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:43 pm

Is it just me, or does Uggla seem to be more and more “active” at the plate the longer he struggles?

archie

August 5th, 2012
2:43 pm

Can’t wait until next Saturday when Uggla gets another hit and “breaks out of it!” again.

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:44 pm

David Ross thinking he’ll get lucky twice… :lol:

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:44 pm

Clarification — Uggla move so many things so much while in the batter’s box and each at time he seems to add some more movement

ACE

August 5th, 2012
2:45 pm

Fredi keeps running Uggla out there because he believes the back of the bubble gum card.

Tomahawk Mafia

August 5th, 2012
2:45 pm

Dan Uggla with two more strike outs today. It looks like he never makes any adjustments. I am assume he is working on things, but the results are pretty bad.

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
2:47 pm

Joe Simpson in 607 career games – 9 HR, .242 Avg, .289 OBP and SLG’d. 317

I guess when Uggla is this bad it triggers some bad personal memories. :lol:

BF54

August 5th, 2012
2:48 pm

I take it some of you don’t believe Dan when he say’s he’s readyy to start “clicking”

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
2:49 pm

Medlen is feeling the fatigue it looks. Get the pen crankin’.

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
2:52 pm

Don’t forget Uggal has two of our three RBI’s in the last two games so far.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:52 pm

I think (or maybe hope) that Dan will figure it out and get hot again. I just don’t see how anyone can have that much movement in the batter’s box and see the ball coming out of the pitchers hand, much less settle down to get a good swing going. I’m not a coach, never played professional ball, so it’s part observation and part question.

Lance

August 5th, 2012
2:53 pm

Enter your comments here

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:54 pm

Norris has a losing record, 5-8, and an awful ERA, 5.00.

That’s the perfect recipe to shut down the Braves’ offense.

This is one of the only teams in the majors that is capable of struggling in such ways against bad pitchers, with the excuse of “not having faced them before”.

Other teams see a bad pitcher for the first time and smoke them like it’s child’s play…

Rob From SC

August 5th, 2012
2:55 pm

I don’t see how Medlen doesn’t stay in rotation.

ChattTownBrian

August 5th, 2012
2:56 pm

Bud Norris is having a fit about that called third strike, meanwhile he’s been getting calls like that all day. Is he stupid or just plain slow?

TNScott

August 5th, 2012
2:56 pm

Dan will figure it out as soon as he finds the key to the batter’s box.

Bravefaninok

August 5th, 2012
2:56 pm

JC Brave

August 5th, 2012
2:06 pm

Ok, I got that one out of my system.

Now I feel better… sort of…

I’ll be rational now.

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