Wren discusses Braves’ future, offseason to-do list

Fifteen hours after the Braves lost 6-3 against St. Louis in the single-game Wild Card playoff game, Atlanta general manager Frank Wren discussed the abrupt end to the season, as well as plans for the offseason and what he believes is a bright future for the organization.

Wren (left) says goodbye to retiring Braves icon Chipper Jones on Saturday, the morning after the Wild Card game loss. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

Wren (left) says goodbye to retiring Braves icon Chipper Jones on Saturday, the morning after the Wild Card game loss. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

Can you describe the feeling the next day after losing like the Braves did in the Wild Card game?

Wren: “Probably a one-word description is emptiness. I think we’ve talked all season long that we had a real good team and had a chance to take it into the postseason and do well. How well? You never know. That you understand that’s kind of the laws of baseball. But we had a chance to do well. I probably went into [this] postseason game as relaxed and at ease as I’ve gone into any in a long time, because I felt like we were ready to play. We had played well in September and felt like we had the right guy on the mound. We had everything going in our direction. And then you don’t make the plays defensively in postseason, it’ll bite you. And that’s what beat us.”

Did this game show what some view as an inherent flaw in the Wild Card single-game playoff?

“All of us at the general managers meeting when we talked about this format, it’s not a format that’s indicative of the best team. When you’re playing for six months and 162 games, this is not a sport where you play 20 games. This is not a sport where you play a handful of games, and then one game is appropriate. This is a sport where it’s about series, it’s about winning series. And one game is kind of a harsh reality.”

Could you see Major League Baseball tweaking the format?

“I think there’s a lot of people that love it. They love the drama. They’re not sitting where we’re sitting this morning. They love the drama, and I understand that. I’ve watched those 163rd games over the years and thought about, this is baseball drama at its best. I’ve also seen a real good friend of mine, David Dombrowski, play in one of those games a couple of years ago, and see what a crushing defeat it is. It’s a little bit different, that being a tie at the end of the season and a 163rd game. Postseason is supposed to be different.”

“Really what came down to the crux of the problem when we discussed it at the general managers level – obviously this is a decision made above the general managers level – but you don’t want to disadvantage the division winners as well, by having them sit. Because in many cases — and we’ve experienced it with the Braves over the years, where we clinched on the 20th of September and you’re now getting your team ready, and you lose that edge — well now all of a sudden you sit four or five days to play your first playoff game, there’s a good chance to lose your edge. So it’s a difficult fix, to say the least.”

Thinking outside the box, could they perhaps play a three-game Wild Card series in two days?

Braves fans littered the field with plastic bottles and other garbage after the controversial infield-fly ruling went against them in the eighth inning of the Wild Card loss to St. Louis.  (Curtis Compton photo/AJC)

Braves fans littered the field with plastic bottles and other garbage after the controversial infield-fly ruling went against them in the eighth inning of the Wild Card loss to St. Louis. (Curtis Compton photo/AJC)

“That’s one off the things we discussed at the general managers meetings, make it a best two-out-of-three and play a split doubleheader the first day. I think all of us would prefer that. I mean, if you’re playing a team that’s got Randy Johnson — they really don’t have much else, but they’ve got Randy Johnson – you’re likely going to lose. But that same team is going to go into the playoffs and get swept.

“I guess it’s trying to fit everything into a neat little package that may not fit very well.”

On the infield-fly rule, do you think there might be a time where they change it, maybe say you can’t go more than 200 feet out, put a line down or something?

“I don’t know. It really comes down to umpire’s judgement. There’s always case studies after things happen, and usually it takes something like this for it to be studied further. I can’t remember, and I’ve been in the game 34 years, I can’t remember an infield fly rule having this big of an impact, and being talked about. So there’s a first time for everything.

“But that’s not the reason we lost the ballgame. We didn’t lose the ballgame because of that call. We lost the ballgame because we didn’t make routine plays. We had three of them that came back and bit us. And that’s not indicative of the way we played all year long. We played pretty sound baseball all year long. If there was any question about our club over the course of the season, it was would we be consistent enough offensively. And what did we end up with, 12 hits [in the Wild Card game]? If we make plays we win the game 2-1 or 3-1. They score one run. I know they end up getting more earned runs than that, because you can’t assume a double play. But they shouldn’t have scored.”

A year ago when you fired hitting coach Larry Parrish, you talked about requiring a better approach at the plate from hitters. Were you satisfied with the approach in the first season under new hitting coach Greg Walker and assistant Scott Fletcher?

“Very much so. I think we started from the beginning of spring training with a real battling approach. You look at early in the season, I thought up until the All-Star break we did a really good job of that. I think that kind of whittled away a little bit in the second half, and Greg will tell you that. And it’s not because he stopped preaching it. I think hitters will sometimes get less patient.

“But we saw a lot of games where we got the other team’s starter up around 100 pitches in the fifth inning. And that’s the goal. That’s the goal, to make them pitch and make them make their pitches to get you out. And I thought we did a very good job of that throughout the year, and I think it’s only going to get better. Because there’s a lot of nights where we’ve got three or four young hitters in that lineup, and as they learn their craft and become more patient, look for a better pitch, they’re just going to get that much better.”

Could that decline in patience in second half also have contributed to the team’s reduced average when hitting with runners in scoring position? (The Braves finished the season tied for last in the majors with a .231 average with runners in scoring position.)

“I think there’s probably no coincidence. Because when you get over-anxious as a hitter, you really fall into the strategy of the pitcher, because he’s going to try to get you out with his pitch. And especially with runners in scoring position, they’re not going to serve you something over the middle of the plate, unless it’s a mistake. You’ve got to make them come to you. And usually, that’s not swinging at the first pitch.”

Going into this offseason, obviously you’ve got significant holes to fill with Chipper Jones retiring and the Michael Bourn free-agent situation. What’s this kind of offseason like for you as a GM?

“I feel like this is a more focused offseason. I’m looking forward to it, because I think there’s a narrower focus with what we need. We have a lot of good young players in place. We’ve got to determine what we do it center field, and that kind of couples with leadoff. Center field/leadoff. And then how we replace Chipper. And beyond that, our club’s pretty solid. So it’s a fairly narrow focus.

“I think the exciting part for all of us is we’ve got a dynamic young core. We’ve got three young guys that were in that lineup [for the Wild Card game] that have a chance to be All-Star players and have a chance to be leaders of this team for a long time. And the bullpen’s intact, our starting rotation’s intact. There’s a lot of things that are real positive going into next year. And guys are going to get better. We’ve got a very young pitching staff, and we’ve got some dynamic young pitchers that are just on the horizon who have a chance to be good.

“I’m very optimistic about where we sit as a franchise, with the thought of adding a couple of key pieces.”

Do you think Brian McCann is going to be fine after surgery?

Brian McCann struggled with injuries in the second half of the season and could face shoulder surgery and several months of recovery. The Braves hold a $12 million option on his contract for 2013. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

Brian McCann struggled with injuries in the second half of the season and could face shoulder surgery and several months of recovery. The Braves hold a $12 million option on his contract for 2013. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

“I think we first have to determine if surgery is necessary. And that hasn’t been determined yet. So I think there will be some testing to determine if surgery is necessary.

How about the contract options for him and others? (The Braves hold 2013 team options for McCann, at $12 million, and starting pitchers Tim Hudson, $9 million, and Paul Maholm, $6.5 million.)

“We haven’t talked about options, picking up options. We haven’t talked about any of that stuff yet. We’ll do that over the next weeks.”

What’s the deadline for picking up those options?

“I think it’s within three days after the World Series.”

Is it too early to determine how realistic a chance there is of re-signing Bourn, given the market?

“Yes, it is. Michael’s situation is, we made contact with his agent in spring training to start negotiations, and they were not prepared to negotiate at that point, and said they would prefer to wait until after the season. We made it clear to Michael that we want him back, that we’d love to have him back. But we also know there’s a process in place.”

A year ago you had four young pitchers you considered nearly untouchable in terms of trades. How is that situation now?

“We’ve got a good handle on the inventory of pitchers we have. We still like our young pitchers a lot, so that hasn’t changed. I think the opportunities were there for them to get their feet wet. In the case of [Randall] Delgado, I think he got a number of starts in the middle of the season and I think he saw some things that both he and we realized he continued to develop.

“Julio Teheran, in his case he got off track for about two-thirds of the minor league season, and in the month of August he got back on track and was dynamic and outstanding again. So we’re looking forward to him – they’re both pitching winter ball in the Dominican Republic, and we’re looking forward to them continuing that development. But they’re still guys that we value a lot, and so if we’re going to have any [trade] discussions it’s going to be for a very, very big piece.”

Now that you have more cash available, do you look beyond cheaper options to fill holes?

“We may shop at a different store.” [Laughter.]

So instead of Walgreen’s or Wal-Mart….

“We may go up the street to Target.” [Wren laughs; he was joking.]

“No, we have the [financial] ability. We’re losing one Hall of Fame player, and the salary that goes with a Hall of Fame player. And we’re going to be looking to replace him. And as we do that, it gives us an opportunity to add another big player. And we’ll see what happens with Michael Bourn. We’d love to keep him and hope we do keep him.

“That being said, there are not a lot of pieces out there in the free-agent market this year that are all that appealing. So we might have to look other places.”

Regarding the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, does having the extra wild-card team in each league make teams approach roster building differently and/or make fewer team willing to trade in the offseason, or in July because they’re still in playoff contention?

“The trade deadline is pretty early right now for the current system we have. I’m not sure people are going to be courting for the Wild Card in October-November-December. I think what they’re going to be trying to do is build a division winner, so I think it’s still the same concept in offseason team-building. I think it changes in-season.”

When would you like to see the trade deadline moved to?

“I almost think it should be probably Aug. 15. As late as possible. Fifteen days is probably about as far as you can move it.”

We’ll you be on the free-agent market like you were in, say, 2009, when you pursued A.J. Burnett and others and signed Derek Lowe?

Kris Medlen (left) get a bat signed by Tim Hudson the day after the Wild Card loss. Medlen will anchor the rotation in 2013, and the Braves have a reasonable $9 million option on Hudson's contract. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

Kris Medlen (left) get a bat signed by Tim Hudson the day after the Wild Card loss. Medlen will anchor the rotation in 2013, and the Braves have a reasonable $9 million option on Hudson's contract. (Phil Skinner photo/AJC)

“We’re going to be looking for premium players, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. But a couple of things we’re always mindful of. We’re mindful of, we’re putting a team together. We’re not trying to put a player on this team. And so that’s our overriding philosophy of putting a good team together – if we think we can add two players that give us more than one player, we’re going to do that.

“So we’re not going to go outrageous salary-wise. We’ve seen that time after time bite teams in the butt, so we’re not going to play that game.”

How do you view Martin Prado? (Prado can be a free agent after 2013 season.)

“I see Martin as a real valuable player on this team, a real solid player on this team. He’s a Brave. He cares about this organization, he cares about the team. I think the good thing for us is we were able to get him through a full season without him starting to break down. I think he’s a hard guy to get through a season because he wants to play every day. The season just wears him down, and this year he got through it and was still a real solid performer and producer right until the end.

“The other part of is, he can do a lot of things for your team. Those are all things over the next few weeks, as we start having our organizational meetings and we talk about how our team comes together, I’ll meet with Fredi and the coaching staff early next week and we’ll go through our team and evaluate our team and talk about their view of how we configure for next year. And we’ll start putting plans in place based on that.”

Could you see Prado as a leadoff option?

“I think he is your absolute prototypical No. 2 hitter. I think that’s who he is. I think he’s really good in that role. It would be … it would be OK [for him to hit leadoff], but it wouldn’t be great.”

What’s his best position?

“It would probably be in the infield, either second or third. I mean, the ideal situation for him. But that’s the hard part, because you don’t necessarily get to go out on the market and get the perfect guy for your team. So we’ll have to see how that all plays out.”

Could Jason Heyward be an option to play center field?

“For a few days. We think he’s arguably the best right fielder out there, and I think it would diminish him if we played him in center field. I think it would diminish his defensive value. And that’s one of the things we talk about a lot – we were really good in the outfield. We turned a lot of balls into outs, and part of that was his play in right field, and I don’t think it’s the same in center.”

Wren said Jason Heyward matured more than any player he could remember. The Braves don't have any intention of moving him to center field even if Michael Bourn isn't re-signed. (Brent Sanderlin photo/AJC)

Wren said Jason Heyward matured more than any player he could remember. The Braves don't have any intention of moving him to center field even if Michael Bourn isn't re-signed. (Brent Sanderlin photo/AJC)

Because he’s so big and muscular, is it better to not have him in center field where might be more likely to get hurt running around and diving so much?

“I just think Jason probably matured as a player more than anyone I’ve seen in a long time. And I think leaving him alone, putting him in a position where he excels and is performing at a high level, and know that’s his home, and not have to wonder where he’s going to play.”

Is it too early to say (backup catcher) David Ross will be re-signed, do you have to wait to see how that market develops?

“Rossy’s been a big part of this team for the last three or four years since he’s been here. A real valuable guy in that backup role, and we’ll continue to hopefully have him back. He did a heckuva job [in the Wild Card game]. Got us off to the lead, which, most of the time in a playoff game, you get off to that 2-nothing lead, with the way we’ve played most of the year, you’re going to win that game. And that’s really, I think, probably the biggest disappointment. We had that 2-nothing lead, now you get that double-play ball and you’re going to get through the big part of their lineup unscathed, and it doesn’t happen…

“I think the way he’s used [in the backup] role, he’s handled it really well. The thing about David, the days he plays he gives you a lift. He calls a good game, he obviously still can throw with anyone, as far as having a quick release and accurate, and has a knack of getting that big extra-base hit. Almost every time he starts, you’re looking for a double or a home run or something out of him. And if he doesn’t do that, he gives you a good bunt.”

Going back to McCann and the cyst in his shoulder, so there’s a possibility that can heal without having it removed surgically?

“From what we know today, it would not be a surgical repair. But because during the season we can’t do the MRI with [dye] injection — because you’re [sidelined] too long — once he has the MRI and we know totally and we get the medical report on it… But for what we know now, the prescribed treatment is rest.”

Between the shoulder and the knee he really struggled this season.

“He had tendinitis [knee]. He had an MRI the other day and the knee was clean. It was tendinitis, and if you get raging tendinitis in a joint, it can be very painful. And so he was battling that and he was battling the shoulder, and unfortunately with the shoulder, the only thing that can help it is rest. And during the course of the season you’re never going to get enough rest to get it turned around. We may find out with the MRI with contrast that there’s more going on in there. So that’s one of the things we need to find out.”

The Braves didn’t get Dan Uggla to be a No. 7 hitter….

“We got him to be a run-producer, and I think we always saw him as a 5 or 6 hitter. That’s what we hoped we were getting, that’s what we thought we were getting. And I think we feel like, in the course of the last month, some progress was made in helping him stay more consistent. And so if that’s the case, we’ll be in good shape. We really do feel like there were some diagnostics done as to what got him out of whack over that summer period. So hopefully that doesn’t happen again, but if it does happen again I think we can shorten the time.”

Fredi [Gonzalez] said all the coaches all being asked back. So they’ll all return?

“We’re going to offer them the opportunity to come back. If they choose not to … I can’t answer that.”

You’re at a crossroads with (struggling starting pitcher Jair) Jurrjens, but what about (Tommy) Hanson, is that case a little different?

“That’s different. I think with J.J. will have a determination this winter as to what happens with him. But Tommy won 13 games and pitched very well early in the season. At the end of the season his outings got a little shortened. If we can help him from a stamina standpoint, getting stronger, I think that would help correct a lot of that.”

1,736 comments Add your comment

Disgusted

October 8th, 2012
5:02 pm

The future once again is to wait till next yr & they will find a way to disappoint again.

They even might make another WC run only to bow down early in post season again.

There is NO HOPE. The Braves cannot do it. Don’t matter who wears this uniform.

And Hanson is lazy, second rate pitcher who needs to pitch in a league that ends in July.

Darryl Blackberry

October 8th, 2012
5:10 pm

Stamina was not Tommy’s issue. Lack of a good fastball was.

DHD

October 8th, 2012
5:16 pm

Simple fix for the infield fly rule. It is designed to protect the offense. All you have to do is say that in the same situation, a dropped fly ball cannot be turned into a double play. If you drop it, you can force one runner but no double play. Simple fix.

King of Carrot Flowers

October 8th, 2012
5:16 pm

Still trying to erase the final image Chipper left us for his career. Can’t imagine a more disastrous end to an otherwise storybook season.

First, there was the week-long personal victory lap that was the final homestand. Obviously it wasn’t in the team’s best interest for Chipper to play every day, when he hadn’t been healthy enough to do that all year. Would he have played better against the Cardinals given normal rest? We’ll never know…

Of all people to Buckner an elimination game to end a HOF career, I would’ve never bet on Chipper to go out like that. Enough has been said about the bad throw. At least that was a physical error…

Most disappointing of all was Chipper’s final “hit”…9th inning of an elimination game…Chipper fists a ball up the middle that has infield hit written all over it. But for some inexplicable reason, he couldn’t even muster max effort for one last sprint to first. And as a result, he was out. Even though the ump missed the call. Really, Chipper? That’s what you wanted to leave us with? An out that would’ve been a hit for any schlub that bothered to run hard in a playoff game?

It brings to mind George Brett’s famous quote, when asked what he wanted out of his final AB:

“I want to hit a ground ball to second,” Brett replied, “bust my butt down the line and be out by an eyelash.”

Chipper obviously had thoughts to the contrary. He might’ve said:

“I want to hit a ground ball up the middle, cadillac down the line and be out by an eyelash.”

There aren’t many players who’ve had a better career than Chipper, and Braves fans have been lucky to watch him play for all these years. I just can’t help but think his personal sendoff became a huge distraction for going out the right way, and keeping his focus on the team, as it had been for 19 years. It was certainly a sad ending for a great player.

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
5:18 pm

Yeah; Here we go w/ rhetoric & pull’n the rug out beneath the fans again. Who can be Genuine around Here? Who’s for real Uncle Frank?

One Big Dummy

October 8th, 2012
5:22 pm

DOB, in regards to the question about Freeman’s Lasik surgery, is Wren’s response about Freddie or Fredi?

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
5:26 pm

You sugar coated everything real good Frank!

flange1

October 8th, 2012
5:26 pm

Nice interview DOB! Would love one with the same questions for Fredi!

Jeff R

October 8th, 2012
5:26 pm

Solid interview. Thanks, DOB.

Brava

October 8th, 2012
5:26 pm

Thank you, DOB.

Interesting that Wren and McCann don’t seem to be on the same sheet of music when it comes to whether Mac will need surgery. Also interesting that he says 2b and 3b are Prado’s best positions. I don’t want to read too much into it, but could it be possible he’ll try to shop Uggla during the off-season? Not that I think any team would want to take him and his salary on.

I know many are down on Bourn for his lackluster second half, but I, for one, hope Wren is able to re-sign him. If they do, I think Fredi should give him more days off, he just seemed to be running on fumes there at the end until he got that break from the thumb injury.

I also saw no mention of the bench. Surely he doesn’t think the one we had this season was adequate. I don’t know the stats, but I’m sure it had to be one of the poorest hitting benches in baseball. Sure hope he puts some effort into improving that.

Whatever happens, it should be an exciting post-season, unlike the one last year which could not have been more boring.

Brava

October 8th, 2012
5:29 pm

Should have said off-season. The post season was not to be for the Bravos. :(

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
5:30 pm

flange1

October 8th, 2012
5:26 pm

Nice interview DOB! Would love one with the same questions for Fredi!

Agree, would love to hear the same interview with ex-manager Fredi G.

King of Carrot Flowers

October 8th, 2012
5:37 pm

An obvious change for the infield fly rule in the postseason should be that it’s not the outfield umpire’s call to make. There’s absolutely no reason why an outfield umpire should be a better judge of an infield fly than an infield umpire. The outfield umpire isn’t making any other calls that relate to the infield — balls/strikes, safe/out at bases, balks, etc.

adam

October 8th, 2012
5:37 pm

Thanks DOB. Good to hear from Wren. I was really frustrated with some of the management in recent years, but have become more optimistic about FW, Freddi, and co. And as always, I appreciate your hard work. You do a great job and should be commended for it.

Brave New World

October 8th, 2012
5:42 pm

Frank Wren has turned a losing team into a play off team. We won 94 games in 2012. It will be exciting to see what happens to improve the Braves this winter. GO BRAVES!

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
5:43 pm

Hey DOB! I do thank you for the interviews, the efforts, the questions, & also having to set appointments w/players, officials, & any of the brass that you have to schedule. I commend you brother, even for this down time, still trying to seek answers. You’re job isn’t easy, & you do ask tough questions Bro. You don’t ask the clown questions bro….LOL…. seriously, I do enjoy you’s & Carrolls blogs. Alot of time & Hard work, keep it going, you’re much appreciated!

Slammin' Helmets, and Breakin' Bats!

October 8th, 2012
5:46 pm

Unless they completely break down Hanson’s delivery, and then build it from scratch, he’s not going to get any better. With the amount of pitching talent this organization has, it’s surprising management remains hooked on some pitchers who never deliver for so long. KK, Lowe, Linebrink, Proctor, Jurrjens, and now Hanson. In the past two seasons, Hanson has shown little improvement, and he actually seems to be getting worse and worse. He’s unable to hold runners, he can’t locate his 87-89 mph fastball, and he basically only has a two-pitch repertoire. Hanson was very lucky to pick up 13 wins this year. I doubt he would have had a winning record at season’s end if it weren’t for our offense picking him up on many occasions. Remember the 9 run deficit the Braves made up in that game against the Nationals? Yeah, that was a Hanson start, and there were plenty of other starts that were similar.

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
5:48 pm

@ king of carrot; I resoundly agree w you’re statement, Totally!

TheOnlyBravesFan

October 8th, 2012
5:50 pm

“That being said, there are not a lot of pieces out there in the free-agent market this year that are all that appealing. So we might have to look other places.”

There’s only 1 good piece… a free agent pitcher, in Anaheim…

But we’re not getting a pitcher. Not a lot of good options on the market. Gonna be some trades going on this winter.

Thanks DOB

TheOnlyBravesFan

October 8th, 2012
5:52 pm

Bench should be improved… Pastornicky will hit better than Hack-Bunt Wilson, Reed’s better than Diaz, and our backup 1B will be better than Ske…

SR

October 8th, 2012
5:54 pm

Based on the team’s gag jobs every stinking year, I expected them to come up short yet again but I also thought I’d be immune to being upset and angry. And I was, until I started watching the first round of the playoffs and those teams play and then I saw how some teams rise up and play with confidence and energy and manage to win. Why can’t we do that!!?? Why are we always the team that chokes, that can’t hit when it counts, can’t make the key pitch, throws the ball away and friggin chokes, every stinking post-season!!!! With the exception of 1995, that’s the way it’s been. Dammit.

jbailz23

October 8th, 2012
5:55 pm

Isn’t Swisher a free agent this year? Maybe grab him and put him in LF and move Prado to 3B? I don’t think Swisher will demand crazy money and he’s solid defensively and a good bat.

spittoon for struggla

October 8th, 2012
5:55 pm

FIRST!!!

Well put re: Chipper’s last hoorah, “King of Carrot Flowers.” It was indicative of the culture of the team for the last number of years. Apathetic, and sometimes just pathetic.

TheOnlyBravesFan

October 8th, 2012
5:57 pm

Swisher supposedly wants Werth money (17-20 mil/yr) and is 32.

spittoon for struggla

October 8th, 2012
5:57 pm

With you too, “SR.” And previous posts regarding the bench.

Looking forward to seeing Borne become the highest paid CFer in baseball, and still in a Braves uni.
“Not!”

jbailz23

October 8th, 2012
6:01 pm

Is he a Boras client too? Swisher I mean

No Kidding

October 8th, 2012
6:01 pm

@ Disgusted: Seriously? For everyone except the team that wins the Worlds Series, it’s “Wait ’til next year.” I’m sure Frank Wren is racking his brain looking for new ways to disappoint. You can tell that’s why he’s invested his life in baseball. Same with Fredi. They get together and say, “how long can we string these fans along for?” Grow up.

fan

October 8th, 2012
6:02 pm

Truthfully, Wren should go.
If not, and he has any brains, he would dump Gonzalez, Pendleton, McDowell, and Snitker,, too.
He should not even bother with Maholm, Hanson, McCann, or Bourn.
Try to dump Uggla, if possible. Put Francisco at 3rd, Prado at 2nd, Constanza in CF, and Johnson in LF.
Get a bat or two, or three.

crackbaby

October 8th, 2012
6:03 pm

@Frank Wren – J-Hey is arguably the best right fielder out there?

Whoa! Did he say that? Love the kid but J-Hey’s fielding needs work. Don’t think he’d finish in the top 6 for Gold Glove.

Somebody tell me I’m crazy.

needastar

October 8th, 2012
6:05 pm

I wonder how much management has taken into account what the lack of Chipper will mean for attendance next year. We all know that Liberty Media is only in this to make money, and thus our payroll will fluctuate based on attendance and revenue. With Chipper gone, the Braves are not going to lose a large amount of the fan base they have had, however the casual fan is going to think twice about going to the ballpark without a star to see. Heyward isn’t the star they would need to fill seats, he might be in the future but not yet. With Chippers career coming to an end over the past few years, we have been averaging around 30,000 a year. Now that he’s gone, who is going to attract them to the stadium? Even if the Braves go 110-52 next year and win the division, they will find it hard to fill the stadium, unless the either sign a big name free agent that will fill the void, or they win a division series and people will come out and support the NLCS. I’m guessing that if we don’t sign a big name to fill the void left by Chipper that attendance will drop to under 25,000 a game (almost 5,000 less than last year). Less attendance means less revenue which means a lower payroll……. Long story short, it will be interesting to see what happens.

Mixxo

October 8th, 2012
6:05 pm

Will Frank defer to the blog “analysts”/”scouts”/”experts” at the meetings?

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
6:05 pm

I’m not sure what B/Macs contract status would be if he elected to have surgery but he would mis 3-5 months next season so I assume the braves would have to pay him although insurance would probably pay most of it. However, Wren is hoping he doesn’t have to have surgery, that way the Braves would be free to either pick up the option or buy out his contract saving millions of dollars.

DOB – Could you shed some light on how surgery would affect B/Macs contract options???

jbailz23

October 8th, 2012
6:07 pm

crackbaby – You’re crazy, look at his defensive statistics compared to other RF’s. I don’t remember the exact stats but they mentioned him leading several categories… and “fan” – why dump McCann? Is 5 all star appearances in 6 years not enough? Damn, dude has one year when he struggles mostly due to nagging injuries and you’re ready to dump him? This team won 94 flippin games and half the people on here are ready to throw them to the wolves. Sheesh grow up guys! Go root for the Mets, they had a great year this year!

Virginia Brave Fan

October 8th, 2012
6:08 pm

Lets sign Justin Upton to bat lead off and replace Bourn in CF. I have no idea what to do with LF/3B/2B. I don’t think Fransico is an everyday player. And I absolutely can not stand another season of Uggla. I’d love to see Martin back at 2b, Reed Johnson maybe in LF and ?????? at the hot corner. Maybe Pastornycky at 2B, Martin at 3B? Anyone but Uggla.

Virginia Brave Fan

October 8th, 2012
6:08 pm

Lets sign Justin Upton to bat lead off and replace Bourn in CF. I have no idea what to do with LF/3B/2B. I don’t think Fransico is an everyday player. And I absolutely can not stand another season of Uggla. I’d love to see Martin back at 2b, Reed Johnson maybe in LF and ?????? at the hot corner. Maybe Pastornycky at 2B, Martin at 3B? Anyone but Uggla.

Virginia Brave Fan

October 8th, 2012
6:08 pm

Lets sign Justin Upton to bat lead off and replace Bourn in CF. I have no idea what to do with LF/3B/2B. I don’t think Fransico is an everyday player. And I absolutely can not stand another season of Uggla. I’d love to see Martin back at 2b, Reed Johnson maybe in LF and ?????? at the hot corner. Maybe Pastornycky at 2B, Martin at 3B? Anyone but Uggla.

Chop Chop

October 8th, 2012
6:08 pm

Didn’t expect Wren to say much else. He’s never won anything worth a damn and keeps putting teams out there that aren’t producing when it matters the most. Time to go to Target.

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
6:10 pm

fan

You hit the nail square on the head!

Wink

October 8th, 2012
6:10 pm

Wren is dislusional if he thinks he only has to deal with CF and replacing Chipper at 3rd.

He has a CF, he just has to decide if he will pay him. He solves the problem for a leadoff hitter, base stealer, and defense in center; Bourn is the answer. Now if Boras takes him to the open market, fine. What I would like the Braves to do is make him an above average offer based on available funds and secure this position for a number of years. Should he take another offer, sign BJ Upton or give the job to Constanza. He would feel the same job description, but give you a better chance for infield hits & bunts. My main point is to be proactive and at least let us fans see you try to sign the guy instead of letting someone else set the market and you bow out with no effort shown.

Replacing Chipper, give the job to Prado & sign him to an extension asap. Your infield would be set with Prado 3B, Simmons SS, Freeman 1B and Uggla/Janish/Pastornicky at 2B. I could live with all 3 batting 8th, even Uggla. If Uggla has to bat higher, he has to go, I have seen enough sample size to move him or bat him 8th.

Wren should try to move Uggla & McCann; these two players should help you land a good LF via trade if needed. Braves will also have cash available from Chipper & Lowe ($22 mil) to pursue LF or 3B with Prado going back to 2nd & Uggla traded freeing up even more cash.

If they need more cash, do not excercise team option on McCann: then sign defensive catcher & bat him 7th…Molina like talent.

Add another quality pitcher to starting rotation, rid the team of Hanson’s contract, and keep Hudson or let him go as well, if you can find quality pitcher as mentioned.

Lineup 2013

Bourn CF, if he signs offer, or FA…BJ Upton, or Constanza (lineup or bench)
Prado (3B or 2B)
Heyward (RF)
Free Agent (LF)
Freeman (1B)
Simmons (SS)
Free Agent (C)
Uggla (2B), if not traded, Janish if no FA found for 3B, Prado on 2B if sign FA 3B

Wren’s job:
make an offer to Bourn, get Free Agent LF, Free Agent Catcher, sign Free Agent 3B
move Uggla contract, trade McCann, trade Hanson & get back quality pitcher…
then your roster would be solid Mr Wren!!!

TheOnlyBravesFan

October 8th, 2012
6:11 pm

Swisher is not a Boras client.

Mister Frisky

October 8th, 2012
6:13 pm

Great work DOB.Wren needs to finally admit that this offense has been awful for 3 years.Time to fix it by any and all means possible.Braves got lots of money coming off the books,and plenty of arms that could be dealt to improve the everyday line up.Time for a change in attitude and results in the post season.Teams celebrating at the Ted cannot continue.9 times in 17 years way too much.

FRANK WREN IS PURE BS

October 8th, 2012
6:14 pm

Everything that proceedeth from the mouth of Frank Wren is pure BS! First thing they ought to do is fire Fredi Gonzalez and Roger McDowell, release JJ and Tommy Hanson and trade Brian McCann for somebody who can see, hit, and play every day. Glad the Chipper Gimper Jones ERA is over in Atlanta.

jerry

October 8th, 2012
6:15 pm

One more question, Mr. Wren. “Do you think Uggla is worth 12 million dollars or about 2 cents?”

jbailz23

October 8th, 2012
6:16 pm

There’s only one place he’ll find that kind of money and it’ll determine if the Yankees wanna keep him or not.

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
6:17 pm

I wish people would stop talking about trading McCann, you cannot trade him unless you pick up his option first then he could probably veto a trade.

David O'Brien

October 8th, 2012
6:20 pm

7-1 Cardinals. Like I said, you don’t want to clinch early if that means you’re going to put it on auto-pilot and rest everyone for the last week or two and play .500 ball. Can’t just flip the switch when the playoffs start. Cardinals should be going up 2 games to none, frankly.

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
6:20 pm

Trade Uggla and pay half his salary the next 3 years and save $6million a year.

ChopStoppedAgain

October 8th, 2012
6:24 pm

I would say moving Martin Prado to third base and going after a LF and CF would be the best move. There are more outfielders out there than third basemen.

Yes Way Josè

October 8th, 2012
6:25 pm

Crackbaby: You’re crazy.

Ebenezer Snerdberg

October 8th, 2012
6:31 pm

FRANK, YOUR RESIGNATION WOULD BE THE BEST NEWS WE COULD GET! YOU’RE TOTALLY INEPT!

jeffrey d

October 8th, 2012
6:34 pm

All caps should help your case

Ueeediot

October 8th, 2012
6:35 pm

has to laugh every time I read a Wren interview.

RE: Tehran and Delgado.
They are doing so well that we traded for Maholm and signed Sheets of the sheetpile.

Wren is so good at ruining his players value.

Peter

October 8th, 2012
6:36 pm

FIRE Wren….. they did in Baltimore….and now we have him and what have we done.. ZERO ZERO ZERO !!!!!!!

jeffrey d

October 8th, 2012
6:36 pm

Wren is so good at ruining his players value.

Like that loser Renteria

Patrick

October 8th, 2012
6:37 pm

“We’re going to be looking for premium players, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. But a couple of things we’re always mindful of. We’re mindful of, we’re putting a team together. We’re not trying to put a player on this team. And so that’s our overriding philosophy of putting a good team together – if we think we can add two players that give us more than one player, we’re going to do that.

“So we’re not going to go outrageous salary-wise. We’ve seen that time after time bite teams in the butt, so we’re not going to play that game.”

I HATE this statement! Reading between the lines, Wren clearly is stating that they are not going to do what it takes to win a World Series. He will only do enough to “dangle a carrot” so to speak to the fan base…giving the team a chance to make the playoffs and then letting things play out from there.

But, to win, you HAVE TO SPEND. He doesn’t have to be outrageous and spend $200 million on a roster…but he does need to be realistic and wise up to the fact that you are leaving yourself NO ROOM for error and also need to bank on a lot of luck with an $85 million payroll. Spending $100-$105 is not outrageous, it is realistic in this market, but..the Braves will not do that-Wren just said it himself. So we can kiss Michael Bourn good-bye.

I also like his nonchalant statement about “just” having to replace Chipper. Yeah…that’ll be easy, replacing one of the best players in the history of the game. The glue to your lineup, heart and soul of your team and the biggest reason fans go through the turnsytle.

If Wren doesn’t spend and make a big splash in free agency or via a trade, things could spiral down even farther than they did when Ted sold the Braves to the devil aka “the corporate world”

Patrick

October 8th, 2012
6:37 pm

Reading his comments gives me no hope.

JoeBrave

October 8th, 2012
6:40 pm

Lol at the IDIOT that suggested sign J Upton…Justin Uptown. Is a RF for Arizona a and would have to be traded for.. hid bro BJ on the other hand is a CF and a free agent u
mm no thanks!

Growler

October 8th, 2012
6:41 pm

A wrap-up interview with the GM, and not a single mention of Gonzalez, except to ask if his coaches are coming back. Disappointing and typical.

P Rose

October 8th, 2012
6:44 pm

Frank Wren doesn’t deserve any heat for this loss. This one’s on Chipper.

This was a game they had to win. It was Chipper’s last shot at another title. It was the one chance they’d have to make up for last season’s epic collapse. They could have handed it back to the Cardinals, the very team that overtook them on the final day of the season last year.

They had the lead. They had the historically-hottest pitcher in 100 years on the mound, pitching a shutout, and the historically-hottest closer EVER in the bullpen. The pitchers weren’t going to lose it — no way.

And then…

Chipper Jones threw it away.

Since Glavine and Smoltz left in 2008, this has been Chipper’s team, and especially after Bobby Cox left after the 2010 season.

In Chipper’s first season here, the team would win its one and only world title. Since then they have melted down and choked every single autumn. Chipper remains the only link to all of those chokes. He has never carried his team to ultimate October glory, as the great team-leaders have done. On the contrary, he has been directly responsible in both of the two post-Bobby collapses — first by losing the ball in the lights last year, and then by throwing the game away Friday night.

Through it all, he has never been one to hold his tongue. He has crowed (”They can go home and put their Yankees stuff on”), and he has criticized (”Heyward should play hurt.”) He has said that others should give more effort, as he himself gave less.

He deserves to be in the Hall of Fame for his individual achievements, which are many. But his teams should have won more than one world championship. They could have won just one more this year, but they didn’t. All he had to do was to make that one easy throw to second, but he couldn’t.

So don’t blame Frank Wren. This one was on Chipper.

Patrick

October 8th, 2012
6:44 pm

Nich Swisher is not the answer to anything

He would actually make me want to watch the Braves less.

Nick Swisher-JUST SAY NO!

Heath

October 8th, 2012
6:45 pm

I have been a big fan of McCann, but here’s my observation on what I would do…not that anyone asked, but hey.

The Braves right now only spend around $90M annually on player salaries (I say “only” like that’s not a lot of money, but you get the idea). McCann is not a HOFer right now and if he doesn’t regain the form from his first few years, he won’t be. As such, he does not warrant 13% of the team’s annual salaries. Is McCann’s offense above average for his position? Even this year, yes, it is. The other issue is this: McCann is a catcher, so by nature he is going to miss a lot of games (around 40 each of the last 2 years). Can the team afford to pay for offense to sit on the bench? I don’t think so. If McCann could be brought back at say… $8M/yr…go for it…but $12M just seems way to high for this team’s needs and financial status. I’d rather get another catcher like Ross and put that money in “premium” players at “premium” positions like LF and/or 3B, which coicidently, we need.

As for Bourn… splits be damned, I’d rather take a run at trading for Dexter Fowler first. If you can’t get him, then Bourn. Fowler is more economical and still improving.

JoeBrave

October 8th, 2012
6:46 pm

You will see either Victorino in Cf and Prado in LFO or
Cain in Cf and Moustaskas at 3b. With Prado in LFO and a run at Greinke whilst getting Anibal Sanchez

Wilson

October 8th, 2012
6:48 pm

Board experts OMG most board experts have never been outside in the sunshine and are between 10 years old and 20 years old. They can sure read advanced stats, but because they have no other experience they don’t know how to interpret the stat sheet.

This is not a knock on the board experts that gum their food and drool on themselves until they ring the buzzer for cleanup and bedpan swap. If you gather your decisions on players and info from a blog or message board you need to get to the park more.

JoeBrave

October 8th, 2012
6:48 pm

And will somebody please stop it with the Costanza horsesh1t he will never be a ml. Starter

Vabravesfan

October 8th, 2012
6:49 pm

willingham is probably the best trade target, RH power hitter, fits the budget with 2 years 14 million left on his deal. the twins need starting pitching and we have plenty of that. For CF i think that defense should be priority. but we are lacking a leadoff man so who knows.

P Rose

October 8th, 2012
6:51 pm

King of Carrot Flowers
October 8th, 2012
5:16 pm
——————————–

Excellent post.

Wilson

October 8th, 2012
6:52 pm

The Angels have a fantastic team and go out and add Trout, Pujols and Greinke so experts tell me how that worked out for them. So adding a Pujols and Greinke and the best rookie in 30 years would not guarantee the Braves a post season so just stop with the nonsense.

Goober McBrave

October 8th, 2012
6:58 pm

Best bet here is Brett Lawrie and Rajai Davis… but for whom?

George_George

October 8th, 2012
6:58 pm

Thank you DOB for good interview with FW. I would not overspend tp keep BOURN,think JOHNSON and JOSE C can handle CF. BRAVES real need is a solid good hitting LFder, because I believe MARTIN should be our every day 3RD BASEMAN. With our pitching staff and some improvement of bench BRAVES should be fine to at least equil this years win total. Of course FREDI will have to be a bit smarter and show some energy.

Goober McBrave

October 8th, 2012
7:01 pm

Either way, Wren will screw this up big time! see Lowe ,Kawakami,Uggla,among others!

Gator

October 8th, 2012
7:01 pm

Best solution is to get rid of outfield umpires for the postseason. They arn’t used for the other 162 games so why are they necessary during the playoffs?

Goober McBrave

October 8th, 2012
7:03 pm

WTH? 2 part time players manning full time positions, I am damn glad George isn’t the GM! Constanza is a minor league lifer for a damn good reason!

Heath

October 8th, 2012
7:07 pm

BTW: I also like the Willingham for…Hanson (plus something else I’m sure) trade idea, provided it isn’t Delgado/Teheran added in to the trade. Willingham is affordable $7M/yr, is RH, is OK in the field, has power, and would move Prado to 3B…perfect. That trade makes WAY to much sense not to happen. Braves would have ALL kinds of $ left to resign Bourn if they wanted, pick up all the options, and even sign a longer term deal for Prado.

George_George

October 8th, 2012
7:09 pm

FREDI should be replaced as MGR, but won’t be.

Van Nguyen

October 8th, 2012
7:10 pm

TheBravesareabigtease……..

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
7:11 pm

Schuerholze (?) wrote us a letter of apology after the colapse, & the way it went down unnacceptable, now he had to write a letter of apology to stl.organization & their fans about the Atl’s fans of their unprofessional reaction as unnacceptable & unproffesional to their homeboysam’s assumptional judgement call; moniker;(The mid outfield Holbrook fly rule),

ChipperisGod

October 8th, 2012
7:11 pm

This was a horrible end. The defensive errors, umpires, everything was horrible. We lost that game, the Cards did not win.

We do have a good nucleus, a much better one in tact especially in pitching. But Frank Wren is absolutely delusional if he wants to keep Tommy Hanson. Guy is clearly the WORST starting pitcher we had this year, and I’d give Delgado another shot to be the fifth starter until Beachy returns.

Chipper’s career ended like much of his career played out. Great during the season, bad post season. He used to have good playoff seasons, but that error in 01 in the NLCS, the terrible postseason he had in 05 and now. It’s just frustrating. The guy is a legend and my favorite player ever, but he could never get to the end except for that one time. Came close, he tried and fought with all he could, but just couldn’t do that.

We just can’t seem to get over that hump anymore. Heck, Chipper just had to make that one play, and we probably would have won the game. Sad that he went out like that.

But moving on. Fresh slate, no more postseason chocking. I’d take winning the WC game next year. We just need to not make stupid errors in the postseason. Simple as that. We should have won that game.

Get Ben Revere. Should come cheap and he’s pretty much Michael Bourn, but younger. Had 42 stolen bases and hit 292 this year. As much as I like Mike, he wears down over the second half. We’ve seen it back to back years. Need to get him for CF, and make a run at say a Josh Willingham to go to left and Prado at third. Or keep Prado at LF and make a serious run at David Wright or Chase Headly. Or trade Hanson and Uggla and Tehran for Justin Upton. He’s got potential to be an MVP candidate like he was in 2011.

I would not exercise the option on McCann, make him prove to you he can bounce back before giving him 12 million next year.

Same with Hudson, wouldn’t exercise the option, see how age treats him.

Gotta just do what we need to, to put the team in a good position. We have more money, cut the dead weight (JJ, Hanson), and go get those pieces. Like Michael go and get a cheaper, younger and potentially better Ben Revere. Make a run at Chase Headly, or Upton. Show us, the fan, that you are willing to make the moves to be a championship contender. Staying pat almost worked and should have worked. But we clearly need some different pieces in here to develop that truly killer instinct that the Nats have this year and the Phils had during their five NL East titles. Being the lowest hitting team in baseball with RISP KILLED us in that WC game. Yes, those errors were terrible and cost us the game. But had we hit better with RISP, we would have scored ten runs in that game on Friday!

TheOnlyBravesFan

October 8th, 2012
7:12 pm

Willingham would be good for this team, but he just came off of a career year. First time over 30 HR and 100 RBI. The Twins will be selling quite high on him. I’d bet that they’d want Teheran or Delgado+. Don’t do it!

Willingham has power, and hits for decent avg./obp, but he’s turning 34. He will be declining soon, and for what we’d half to give up, it wouldn’t be worth it. If it takes just Spruill/Salcedo, yes. If they want one of our top pitching prospects, no.

Vabravesfan

October 8th, 2012
7:13 pm

Heath, also that move would leave us with lots of money still as well. Hanson + 1 prospect for Willingham. We’d be only spending around 4 million to fill our LF rh power bat need. Would have plenty of $ and tradable assets to figure out CF or possibly addressing a top of the rotation arm as many view a need.

Wilson

October 8th, 2012
7:13 pm

Cherry pick player failures that rest with the players themselves for not playing up to capabilities and having player failure after they are signed and ignore the successes of calling up Kimbrel, Venters, Avilan, Gearrin, Simmons, Heyward, Freeman, Medlen, Minor, picking up EOF, Martinez, Durbin, Ross, and anyone else I left out farkin maroons.

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
7:14 pm

Hey Ralph….., How’s it goin’? Hope well, hey ya’ll have a good one, selah.

Brava

October 8th, 2012
7:14 pm

Wilson, in case you didn’t know, this is a blog, a place for fans to voice their opinions. It’s DOB’s blog, not yours, so maybe you need to stop the nonsense.

David O'Brien

October 8th, 2012
7:16 pm

DOB – Could you shed some light on how surgery would affect B/Macs contract options??? — Ralph

In that regard, the timing is good for Braves in that they have the one-year option they can pick up if they don’t want to sign long-term for health concerns and/or because they have Bethancourt coming.

Can pick up the option, then if he needs a few months of recovery he’d be ready for spring, and if needs more and misses part of season, insurance would pay part of salary. Once they see how bad the shoulder is and whether he needs surgery, they can move forward this winter knowing how long he might be out, etc, and plan accordingly. There’s no rush, obviously. Free-agent period doesn’t start for a month and many if not most trades and signings won’t be until around winter meetings in early December, or later.

Quack Quack

October 8th, 2012
7:17 pm

Good interview DOB. Hope FW can put all the pieces together, and make it count.

Til then……

GO FALCONS!!!

Mike McDonald

October 8th, 2012
7:17 pm

A heaven-sent Braves New World could put a merciful end to the specious and nauseating Wren/DOB post mortems.

The gift from on high would be a decision that now is the time for Liberty Media to cash in the Braves for maximum returns and tax breaks and focus on their core competencies. The perfect time for a worthy acquirer, such as Arthur Blank, to build upon a small nucleus of affordable position players and a hard core of starters and relievers, plus prospects.

Hands-0n Blank knows what it takes, from the top down, to put a winning, major league organization together in the real world.

A true dynasty of World Series Championships, rather than one of thwarted playoffs, could well be the outcome for Arthur’s adopted city.

Chop Chop

October 8th, 2012
7:18 pm

The Nats did what they had to do to win. It doesn’t matter how you do it.

Efrim

October 8th, 2012
7:20 pm

“I feel like this is a more focused offseason. I’m looking forward to it, because I think there’s a narrower focus with what we need. We have a lot of good young players in place. We’ve got to determine what we do it center field, and that kind of couples with leadoff. Center field/leadoff. And then how we replace Chipper. And beyond that, our club’s pretty solid. So it’s a fairly narrow focus.

They are sort of differing totally from what I wanted. I wanted frontline starting pitching and a banger in LF. Seems like they will just be looking for Bourn replacement who can leadoff – Denard Span, Jacoby Ellsbury, etc. We’ll see.

TennesseePaul

October 8th, 2012
7:20 pm

Thanks for the work DOB.

I appreciated all of your work this season. Really made for a fun year. And to think, it’s not too far into the future when your best-of music blog comes out. Just in time for the Holidays. ( :

norris

October 8th, 2012
7:21 pm

well as Romney said…Hope is not a strategy!
Some major moves have to be made. Otherwise it will be the same old song and dance next year.

old man

October 8th, 2012
7:22 pm

I can’t believe Uggla is getting such a pass by so many people.

If we had put Prado at 2B and Reed Johnson full time in LF the day we got him from the Cubs, we might be the #1 seed in the playoffs right now. Uggla picked up a little late in the season, but then came up with an 0-fer night against the Cards with a big fat error.

Put Francisco at 3B, Prado at 2B, eat 80% of Uggla’s deal next year, and then use all the money we have to get a CF and an LF. I would not rule out re-signing Bourne. I’m going to research the Leo Martin prospect after submitting this comment.

74bravesjersey

October 8th, 2012
7:23 pm

@chippahisGod; have a good one, oh yeah, good points there bud, take care all u passionate Bravo BLOGGSTERS, & The Great Legend,& still #1 Beat writer, Undisputed champ of Beat Writin’, Our DOB!

old man

October 8th, 2012
7:24 pm

Enter your comments here

Ralph

October 8th, 2012
7:26 pm

DOB-Thanks for answering my question, I was afraid they might not be able to do anything as for as declining his option with him being hurt, very good answer.

David from Athens, AL

October 8th, 2012
7:27 pm

Thanks DOB.. Looking forward to a productive hot stove winter!

MitchC

October 8th, 2012
7:28 pm

One thing that distiurbed me during that interview was how Wren kept using the word “Replace” Chipper. I think that shows classlessness,and cluelessness on Wren’s part. What he should have said was siomething like “Acquire pieces or players to compensate for the loss of Chippers bat and production when he retires.

I’m not sure what to make of the Braves now. I think they should be competetive next year, but as to exactly what they do, will be a wait and see process

BRAVESFAN

October 8th, 2012
7:28 pm

What are they going to do with Ernesto Mejia? Seems like he’s too good to be sitting in AAA. I still can’t believe he didn’t get a cup of coffee this year but we played an injured Freeman.

Efrim

October 8th, 2012
7:29 pm

“I think the exciting part for all of us is we’ve got a dynamic young core. We’ve got three young guys that were in that lineup [for the Wild Card game] that have a chance to be All-Star players and have a chance to be leaders of this team for a long time. And the bullpen’s intact, our starting rotation’s intact. There’s a lot of things that are real positive going into next year. And guys are going to get better. We’ve got a very young pitching staff, and we’ve got some dynamic young pitchers that are just on the horizon who have a chance to be good.

Heyward, Freeman, Simmons is a strong core of 23 year olds. Sounds like those three, Prado, Uggla, McCann in the lineup. Hudson, Medlen, Minor, Maholm, and Hanson in the rotation. Kimbrel, O’Flaherty, and Venters in the pen.

I still see Hanson being traded….but we’ll see.

Chop Chop

October 8th, 2012
7:29 pm

Efrim,

Why would they mess with success? This team is thisclose to winning a World Series. Here. Have this Kool-Aid. You’ll feel better.

Joe

October 8th, 2012
7:31 pm

Braves are always Braves…they didn’t know how to win the great games, they still don’t know how to do it, they probably will never learn how to do it…

Excuses and more excuses…in 1997 they lost to Livan Hernadez because the umpire (je, je, je fans forgot that Maddux always had the wide strike zone in MLB)….then during 11 years they never won a WS, and now in 2012 other umpire is been blamed for a new frustation..

WeBurn

October 8th, 2012
7:31 pm

1. Move Prado to 3rd. Wren knows Prado is best in the infield.

2. Do NOT sign McCann. He’s done. He’s going to miss significant time no matter who gets him next year. We could use his salary for so much more good.

3. Sign Josh Hamilton to three years 50 millions, with a team option. He’ll replace McCann’s left-handed bat in the middle of the lineup.

4. Sign Bourn but not for anything over $10 million a year. I know, that means he is gone. Fine. He’s a strikeout machine that wears down at the end of the season. He’s valuable but up to a point.

5. Rebuild the bench. We had too many black holes (Hinske, Wilson). Please find someone to compliment Johnson.

6. Let Maholm walk. I’d like to have a second left-hander of course, but we need to give Delgado or Tehran some burn. Medlen, Hudson, Minor, Hanson, and Delgado or Tehran.

7. When Beachy returns, give him the Medlen treatment by letting him finish out the season in the bullpen. Don’t rush him back into the rotation…instead, get him ready to take Hudson’s slot in 2014.

Frank Wren, you’re welcome.

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