12:40 pm November 15, 2012, by David O'Brien
Just Wanna Say
November 16th, 20123:09 am
Just to clarify. Upton could be the RH power bat, but we still need a leadoff hitter.
November 16th, 20123:16 am
We have good players like Gattis, Francisco, and Constanza that deserve a real chance to start, I feel we can give them the shot they deserve and spend the money needed for Hamilton. This team needs an identity and Hamilton would gve them that. Also Hamilton hits Lefties, Hamilton is one of the 2 or 3 best players in baseball and if you have a chance to go after him then why ot at least make a phone call. I think the Braves at least owe that to us engage Hamilton and see what happens.
November 16th, 20124:11 am
1. It’s November. Cool your heels about a possible opening day lineup.
2. Laird is a winner. If you don’t think he learned from Yadi and Avila, therefore got better, you are crazy. He will bring some of that to the clubhouse and the field.
3. If you want Bethancourt to be a GOOD MLB catcher, he first must be a GOOD minor league catcher. His numbers aren’t there yet. Upside means undeveloped.
4. I am not a FW apologist. There is plenty of work to do. HATE the Schafer signing, but he will not be the starting CF on opening day.
5. I LOVE Hot Stove chatter.
November 16th, 20126:04 am
No need to worry about the possiblity of JC Boscan catching for the Braves. The Cubs signed him yesterday to a minor league deal.
In the end, we got a MLB back up catcher with plenty of experience at a reasonable cost. The Braves were not going to get a starting caliber cather because when Mac comes back, one of the two would be sitting and costing way too much to do that.Would not be surprised ot see Bethancourt strat the season as a back up. I know the Braves would prefer him to play everyday at AAA, but the experience might be good. The Braves may also look to sign a journeyman catcher cheap to plug in as a back up for Laird until Mac is back.
I still want to see what Gattis can do ay AA and possibly the bigs, but he maybe in the OF just for his bat.
November 16th, 20126:30 am
With Chipper’s leadership and Bourn’s speed gone this team will win 85 games in 2013.
November 16th, 20126:41 am
Dumb move letting Ross go. This guy looks like what he is, a CHEAP pickup.
November 16th, 20126:51 am
Well, there goes Laird’s streak.
November 16th, 20126:54 am
“Along with hitting a career-high 28 home runs, Upton also recorded a career-high 169 strikeouts and compiled an alarming .298 on-base percentage. He has combined to hit .242 with a .317 on-base percentage and .436 slugging percentage over the past three seasons. ”
I say PASS on BJ Upton !
Another Dan Uggla !
.298 OBP !
$15 mil a year ???
November 16th, 20127:08 am
no problem with using significant money on Hamilton if he’s the right player. I didn’t think Fielder would be last year, but he was worth every penny. I have a feeling Hamilton is the same. I think he’s turned the corner in his life and will be a top 5 overall player the next 3-5 years.
November 16th, 20127:14 am
Glad we filled the David Ross roster spot quickly. Laird isn’t a bad player, just not a regular everyday starter. Hopefully we can get a peek at Gattis or Benthancourt sometime this spring/early season.
Ross wasn’t worth double his salary for a part time player, yes it sucks we lost the best backup catcher in baseball but good for him getting a raise this might be one of his last nice contracts. It will be interesting to see how Boston puts their team together after shedding over $200 MILLION in contracts last year. They appear to be mixing veterans and young talent which will be fun to watch for Boston fans.
We need to start signing some bigger names asap! Smokey McSchafer just won’t cut it as our lead off guy and daily CF’er. I hope we get 2 outfielders so Marteeen can move back into the infield. We should sign Prado to an extension he is about our most valuable guy out there since they can put him at nearly every position and he plays above average in most positions. Save some $ to extend Heyward, Freeman, and our core young pitchers too! I’d HATE to see any of our young guns lured away while Wren is asleep at the helm.
November 16th, 20127:35 am
November 16th, 20127:48 am
Lets spend a little more to get Josh Hamilton !
For what what they will have to spend to get BJ Upton it only makes sense; the production between the two players isn’t even close
November 16th, 20127:52 am
Forget Hamilton. He’s a mess. You have to follow the guy 24/7 to keep him ou of trouble. Let other clubs overpay the immature, idiot adult.
November 16th, 20128:00 am
Overpaying for fat FAs is not the answer. And I can’t believe folks in love with Hamilton. That’s what we need in the locker room……a guy the whole team can worry constantly about when he’s going to have his next relapse….which he does every year. We didn’t win a championship while Chipper and overrated McCann were in their primes, so why do we think a couple overpaid fat FAs will do it?
November 16th, 20128:18 am
PASS on BJ.
Frank Wren is an Incredible Failure
November 16th, 20128:25 am
Diaz, Schafer & Heyward.
That’s an outfield we can rally around.
Yeah, a Has Been, A Druggie, and a SISSY…..wow how impressive (NOT).
November 16th, 20128:42 am
It will be interesting to see the financial side of the Laird signing. If it is more than, say, $1.3M 2013, $1.4M 2014, I think we overspent (he made $1M in 2012).
We will need a 3rd catcher (Boscan just signed w/ Cubs, Jose Yepez is a minor league free agent) to back up Laird for the first few weeks. I expect Wren will sign a couple of candidates as organizational depth.
I read on rotoworld that the Braves are getting some trade interest in JJ. I know he does not have much value but I hope the Braves can get something for him rather than straight out releasing him. Some team in desperate need of pitching may take a flier on him.
November 16th, 20128:46 am
PASS ON BJ UPTON !
He has nice speed & occasional power but his other numbers SUCK !
A bag of bats and balls is more than enough
November 16th, 20128:51 am
For JJ or Tommy Hanson or FOR BOTH OF THEM……a bag of bats and balls is more than enough and for good measure throw in Fredi for the garbage pit.
November 16th, 20129:04 am
BJ Upton is expected to get $75 million for 5 years
Along with Uggla’s contract (3 years remaining) that would condemn the Braves’ to mediocrity for years to come.
But think about all those strikeouts & meaningless solo HRS !
November 16th, 20129:08 am
Hello everyone, I see all the complainers are out. What do you want? Not everyone can have Miguel Cabrera or Albert Pujols. Love your team people. Have faith and confidence. Wait and see what happens. You got Wren working. Don’t stop him now.
November 16th, 20129:45 am
How about Koyie Hill, or Rod Barajas? Aren’t they both better defensively than Laird? I could be mistaken on that, but it seems they are both better at throwing out base runners. What about Jose Molina from the Rays? He is pretty sound defensively and probably not costing that much. — Yuup
Koyie Hill, who’ll be 34 in March, has hit below .195 each of the past two seasons and has a career .210 average and .565 OPS. And you think he’d have been a better choice than Laird, when the Braves are going to need the backup catcher to be the starting catcher for at least the first 2-3 weeks of the season? So whatever difference there might be in percentage of runners thrown out, to you that makes up for the fact that Hill is a black hole offensively?
No Flag Since Lemke
November 16th, 20129:55 am
Someone posted that BJ Upton is another Dan Uggla. Not exactly. Uggla may hit .240 like Upton but he never takes plays – or innings – or games off like Upton.
November 16th, 201210:00 am
Obviously not as good as Ross, but if we had to lose him because of the money, Laird is a great pickup. Good job Wren.
Heres the lineup i saw going into the offseason
Span or Victorino
So far im battin 500!
November 16th, 201210:02 am
My goodness, Brave fans (or at least those who post on here) are absolutely delusional. Josh Hamilton is not going to happen.
Also, BJ Upton would be a terrible pickup. He strikes out way too much and never gets on base. That is a very poor tradeoff for a few home runs and steals.
November 16th, 201210:07 am
Need to nut up and make a statement to Nats & Phillies & sign Josh Hamilton. I heard Chase Utley reinjured his knee when he fell off his couch laughing at Braves signing Laird.
November 16th, 201210:10 am
All those backups are black holes offensively including Laird…
November 16th, 201210:13 am
First of all: WE DO NOT NEED HAMILTON. Second: BJ Upton doesn’t strikeout as much as bourn did. Third: Quit complaining on who Wren gets. He,s working. Don’t stop him now
Just glanced at ajc.com home page, and there was a picture of Twinkies w/ story of Hostess shutting its doors, right beside an unrelated story about diabetes on rise in Georgia.
November 16th, 201210:33 am
Offense is overrated.
Not much difference between a .240 and .300 hitter
The dud, Laird, sounds like a typical Wren panic signing. Bringing back Greg Olsen makes more sense.
November 16th, 201210:47 am
The sooner the Braves get rid of McCann the better. He is terrible. Can’t hit, can’t hit in the clutch, is too slow and is a poor defensive catcher. All the ingredients you need for a starting catcher
November 16th, 201210:48 am
Plus he and Derek Lowe combined to keep ATL out of the playoffs in 2011.
November 16th, 201210:49 am
Upton had 169 strikeouts last season and a .298 OBP; with that many whiffs he should have had a lot more homers than 28; his RBI total isn’t too good either
That is too Uggla-esque for me.
Atlanta Braves Links of the Day For November 16, 2012 | Atlanta Braves Dugout Online | Atlanta Braves Blog
November 16th, 201210:50 am
[...] Braves sign Laird as new backup catcher [...]
November 16th, 201210:54 am
@Braves Nation I wouldn’t worry about Upton. Braves did not sign him when he visited. Other teams especially Philie know Braves want him so they will outbid and sign him.
November 16th, 201212:05 pm
Braves acquired a quality back up,he is durable, handles pitching staff well, and has a leadership ability in the club house. gonna miss “G Money” in Tiger Town!!
November 16th, 201212:58 pm
Another dumb-ass moved by another DA. Let the best back-up catcher go and use his age as a reason. Scouting and money have been a major problem for the braves the past few years, as illustrated by the lack of a qualified 3d base prospect. Everyone knew Chipper was close to the end of his career the past 5 years-and no option at ed base in the system. Remember the 6 P(s)–prior planning prevents piss poor performance. Words to live by Frankie Boy.
November 16th, 20121:37 pm
The Braves ownership in letting Ross go are about as bad as the Hostess Twinkie guys!
November 16th, 20123:34 pm
75 million for Upton..Offer the 75 million to Bourn and keep our lead off man and our defensive cenere fielder…. no brainer
November 16th, 20123:35 pm
Should have given Ross the second year..
November 16th, 20123:47 pm
Braves fever – Gerald Laird? He’s no Paul Bako but he’ll do. The problem is that Laird fits the Braves business model – not the best guy out there but affordable. The Braves – alas – need some offense out of the C position. Ross got some big hits filling in McCann. I don’t see Laird matching Ross’ output. Therefore, sans McCann, this is a minor step backwards.
All this new money from Chipper, Bourn, etc … has to be spent somewhere. Doesn’t it?
November 16th, 20123:48 pm
Come on, it was a LUXURY to have Ross as a backup for all those years. Get over it!
November 16th, 20124:34 pm
If the Braves do sign Upton or Pagan I would leave Prado in left field. I would then try to work out a deal with the Rangers for Olt. Maybe one of Delgado or Tehren plus one additional double AA or below prospect. If it took three players I would consider that depending upon the players requested by the Rangers. If the three players came from several of the Braves positions of strength then I would do the deal. Its my opinion that with one of the two pitchers cited above it should only take one additional prospect.
November 16th, 20124:35 pm
If the Braves cannot obtain Upton or Pagan then I would trade for Span and try to sign both Ichiro and Gomes to share left field.
November 16th, 20124:39 pm
I would sign Ichiro for two years at $8 mill / year and Gomes for 2 years at $4 mill / year. I believe that they would be more productive as a combination than either Upton or Pagan but realize that I am in the minority with that opinion.
November 16th, 20124:48 pm
With one of Ichiro or Gomes on the bench it begins to strengthn the bench, especially as compared to last year. The bench becomes Ichiro or Gomes plus Laird, Francisco, Pasternichy and Constanza
It includes some power, some contact hitters and plenty of speed.
November 16th, 20124:50 pm
This also frees up payroll to extend Heywood and Prado.
November 16th, 20125:02 pm
DOB, How about trading for Toulowiscki from Rockies for a pair of pitchers like Tehran and Delgado, plus 2 A level prospects? and then in turn Trading Simmons to DBack for Justin Upton and then sign free agent BJ Upton
Thats a solid Lineup
November 16th, 20125:13 pm
Only problem is payroll. Otherwise its a good lineup
November 16th, 20125:14 pm
also NO to trading Simmons
November 16th, 20125:16 pm
Gotta Find a way to Trade for a new Owner Someone who is local and wants to win
November 16th, 20126:25 pm
@Desibrave Whatever you are smoking, pass it around
Nova Scotia Steve
November 16th, 201210:23 pm
“The Braves hope that catcher Gerald Laird keeps a personal streak alive by playing in a third consecutive World Series in 2013″
No need to worry. We all know how the Braves handle personal streaks.
See Eric Hinske.
November 16th, 201210:26 pm
Employing offensive black holes is no foreign entity to the Atlanta Braves. Nothing surprises me anymore with this team.
Unless we land Hamilton. Then I may unvoluntarly lose control on all humanly functions and create quite a mess.
November 17th, 20121:49 am
May the sewers of Rangoon back up into your breakfast, Wren.
November 17th, 20123:38 am
So if the general feeling is that David Ross is the best back up catcher in baseball and Laird is a back up then based on that logic Ross is the superior player. Okay, so please tell me why the Braves were unwilling to offer Ross a two year deal but they give this guy a two year deal. I see a lot of people bashing Frank Wren but I usually disagree with the negative comments & feel he does a good job given the payroll restraints but they flat out dropped the ball on this one. They should have negotiated & wrapped up a new two year deal with Ross weeks ago once they knew BMac was going to miss the start of next year.
November 17th, 20128:22 am
For all of you know-it-alls out there. The Red Sox can afford to pay Ross more not only because they have a higher payroll, they also expect Ross to play more. Salty’s average against left handers is terrible and I think it is going to be more of a platoon situation. Also, how did that last free agent pick up from the Braves go for the Red Sox. (Smoltz)
November 17th, 20128:24 am
Ross is 37 and Laird is 33. That is why they are willing to give him a 2 year deal.
November 17th, 201210:15 am
“This is about losing a clubhouse leader……..”
Exactly why do you believe this? Somebody writes this and everyone just continues to repeat it over and over again. What exactly did this ‘leadership’ provide the club the last couple years, neither of which the Braves make it to the playoffs?
Gosh, people suck into these notions just because it’s included in an article. The Red Sox overpaid for a backup and, maybe he’s a decent presence in the locker room. Gosh, it’s hard to hang in these nonsensical boards.
November 17th, 201210:18 am
Leadership in the locker room? Why, because somebody includes this in an article? No playoffs the last 2 seasons and we’re actually going to annoint this guy a locker room leader. Give me a break. He’s at the tail end of a career and the Sox overpaid.
November 17th, 201211:59 am
Laird as a back up is not a huge deal. Two years is not ideal bc he cannot hit a beach ball with a surf board. That said, two years will probably required to get Laird to sign.
In the end Wren is likely saving 1.5 mm a year which apparently he needed to do. However he has wasted more on less in 1yr deals so I would have like to seen him stretch for Ross.
I am no Wren fan or FG for that matter and will be quite happy when they along with JS, McGuirk and Liberty are finally given the boot.
This deal is a rounding error = who cares move. It doesn’t make me dislike Wren more or less.
That will have to wait until I see who he puts in LF, CF and if he can some how unload Uggla which may go down as his worst signing as a GM (talking entire career).
November 17th, 201212:01 pm
…was probably required…..
November 17th, 201212:07 pm
Constanza days as a Brave are probably about up unless Schafer finds another way to suck or screw up.
Gattis is this years Terds but weaker defensively. Gattis seems to be able to hit but he is not a top notch catcher and at best is raw in the OF.
If the Braves were an AL team he would see time in ATL as a DH but unless he can prove to be more than a lamp post in LF or a C- level catcher where do you play him?
He is a great story with huge power but on a NL team that has needs in the field I don’t see him as an option.
People are drooling over his power numbers etc ignoring the rest of his game.
Personally with Mac on his way out and often injured I would not bother with Gattis in the OF. Get him the best catching instrutor you can and improve his game at that position. That or move him to 1B – ditto on the mentor.
EIther as a player or a trade piece he will have more value at C or 1B unless he is more athletic (re: quicker) than he looks (re: moving him to the OF).
November 17th, 20126:36 pm
BREAKING NEWS: Frank Rear End has just announced that the Braves have traded Prado, Heyward, Freddie, their closer and set up man to the Yankees for AROD. The Braves have agreed to pick up the $1.5 trillion still owed by the Yankees on the contract and pay half of the traded players contracts through the year 2525.
November 17th, 20129:05 pm
A sevicable signing, and likely the best option the Braves had available to them.
November 17th, 20129:10 pm
David Ross tutored Brian McCann on mechanics of throwing out runners attempting to steal, and because of this work, Mac’s stats throwing out runners improved dramatically. Ross was also instrumental in calling games, scouting with the coaches and pitchers to decide how to pitch. Considering how well the Braves pitched last year, don’t underestimate the effect Ross had in this one area.
Ross was a veteran presence on a very young team, who had the experience and maturity to provide a calming influence when the team faced adversity, plus a stable influence to temper over-enthusiasm. He was also a first class person and in that respect provided a role model for the younger players to emulate.
So, you can stop the assertion this hasn’t be explained in detail. It has been — by Dave O’Brien and bloggers such as myself and many others.
November 18th, 201212:05 pm
Ross is 35 and will be 36 in March. Laird just turned 33 in November. Saving 1.3mm a year for an inferior hitter when your team is offensively inconsistent and your catcher is coming off major surgery and is not very fit is a risk.
No way to sugar coat that fact.
Mac is a question mark and Bethancourt cannot hit leaving a lot more on Laird shoulders than starting for a few weeks in April.
Again if Wren knocks our socks off with moves in CF and LF then its no big deal. If we end up with Span, Victorino or say Colby Ramus in the OF then it will be a long season.
November 18th, 20125:26 pm
Why not sign Upton and Cody Ross and have a line up like this – Prado, Upton, Heyward, Freeman, Uggla, McCann/Laird, Ross, Simmons and pitcher.
November 18th, 20129:37 pm
if we are going to spend lots of money for a CF, i would like him to be our leadoff hitter. we don’t have a decent leadoff man. the above poster suggested prado. i guess it’s possible…….but only because he’s like chuck norris junior. go bravos.
Bacon and eggs are good
November 19th, 20125:30 am
For one time wren did a great job Larid could be the dark horse here and suprise yall in Hittin and throwin out runners better then McCann’t will i afraid Mccann will be out all season and we should release so can go home make wife have another son…..period The Braves will win 95 games again but choke the wildcard play in game again ….and that will seal freddi job as manager he be fired!
November 19th, 20128:47 am
For one time wren did a great job Larid could be the dark horse here and suprise yall in Hittin and throwin out runners better then McCann’t.
How dark is that horse so dark you can’t see it ?
Awful pick up…….. goes with all the rest of the garbage Wren has brought to this team.
November 19th, 20128:52 am
Are you folks ready to see a 75 win ball club this year ? Hitting will be a challenge, and scoring runs well, we know they have gotten 10 hits and scored 2 runs, because of the lack of speed.
Catchers won’t throw anyone out, so we will get run on all year………. that will drive the pitchers crazy, who then will try to be perfect.
Miserable baseball ahead with Frank Wren at the helm……. and YES baseball IS a LONG Season, when you are losing.
Freddi won’t lose his job, because it really will be managements fault, heck corporate baseball is about all at the top making the money, and screw the fans !
November 19th, 20129:42 am
I don’t really understand the 94 wins argument given how much MLB has watered down the regular season and all but removed it’s importance from playoff results. That said, why does it matter that we won 94 games last year when we didn’t really even make the playoffs? In other words, given the current season and playoff format, who cares how many games we won? The embarrassment of that asinine “play-in” game will echo down the years. Not to beat a dead horse, but the real issue with the C position is not Ross or Laird or Boscan or Bethancourt, but that we rolled the dice on a 12 MILLION DOLLAR OPTION for a fat, slow, poor defenisice C who just had MAJOR SHOULDER SURGERY. This decision will impact the team for years to come and already has impacted the off-season, right out of the gates (see Ross, David)…
November 19th, 20129:43 am
November 19th, 20122:24 pm
Has anyone wondered why the braves didn’t pursue Juan Pierre (sp?)
1.6 mill one year contract for a lead off hitter and center fielder
Gives them one more year to get Cunningham ready.
The only problem that I know of with Pierre is a weak arm
The Braves then could make a trade for Olt or go after a power hitting left fielder
Or they could have gone with a platoon at third and left field involving Gomes / Prado and T third of Francisco / Prado
The later way would have been all free agents (low cost) with a reserve of money in place to use next year on e several more questions have been answered
November 19th, 20122:45 pm
I personally believe tha Prado is a better left fielder than Third baseman
One reason that I like a trade for Olt
I hate to see the Braves do too much this offseason since they have the potential of having Gattis, Bettencourt, Cunningham and Ahmed ready for 2014
That along with some of the younger pitchers being ready in 2014 would give us all the money needed to extend Haywood, Freeman, Beachy, Kimbrel, O’Flaraghty,
If the Braves think that Olt has more upside than Fransisco then trade for Olt and give them Francisco and a good pitcher for Olt this off season and leave Prado in left.
Would still need to trade for Span.
All of these moves make the Braves younger, less costly with room to extend contracts and have more speed on the basepaths. It also gives the Braves the pieces available to trade and tie down Mike Stanton when the Marlins are ready to trade him at this year’s deadline
Braves Fan Since 1966
November 22nd, 20121:13 am
At least he was cheap to sign. Isn’t that all that matters? There’s little to choose from among rotten apples and left overs. One thing for sure we know this guy won’t be playing in a World Series in 2013.
November 23rd, 20126:51 am
Ah, Thanksgiving… I am oddly thankful that when I don’t have enough to entertain myself, all I have to do is get on these blogs and read the screeds of scores of armchairs who seem to think they know everything there is to know about baseball… some of you might want to start learning about it before Spring rolls around… Maybe the networks could make one of those contrived reality shows about y’all… “The Real GM’s of Atlanta”, where useless wannabe’s vie for the title of most boorish imbecile of the year, or MBI, of MLB…
November 24th, 20121:53 pm
So Gattis isn’t on the 40 man Roster, well guess he’ll be left unprotected, I’m sure once given the opportunity somewhere else he’ll fourish, then he’ll probably come back to haunt us. He’s hit in every level he’s been in & the Braves don’t want to take a chance w/him. Somebody else will pick ‘em up quickly. Not much to the braves but Gold to some one else.
November 24th, 20122:31 pm
So Gattis isn’t on the 40 man Roster, well guess he’ll be left unprotected, I’m sure once given the opportunity somewhere else he’ll fourish, then he’ll probably come back to haunt us. He’s hit in every level he’s been in & the Braves don’t want to take a chance w/him. Somebody else will pick ‘em up quickly. Not much to the braves but Gold to some one else. — 74bravesjersey
Before you try to outdo other blog commenters or show you can be just as bitter as the next guy, at least bone up on the rules. Gattis isn’t on the 40-man roster for one reason: He doesn’t need to be protected. He hasn’t been in the organization long enough to be eligible for the Rule 5 draft.
November 25th, 201212:27 pm
Good afternoon. Enjoy this one from The Felice Brothers.
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