Archive for the ‘Notes’ Category

Next for Braves: Miami Marlins

Series preview: vs. Marlins

When (TV): 7:10 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday (SPSO)

Radio: 680, 93.7, 100.5

Probable starting pitchers:

Tuesday: Braves RH Kris Medlen (9-1, 1.51 ERA) vs. RH Nathan Eovaldi (4-12, 4.36)

Wednesday: Braves LH Paul Maholm (12-10, 3.85) vs. RH Josh Johnson (8-13, 3.84)

Thursday: Braves RH Tommy Hanson (12-9, 4.46) vs. RH Jacob Turner (1-3, 4.03)

About the Braves:

Batting: Martin Prado went 10-for-21 (.476) with one double and two RBIs on the Braves’ recent road trip with multi-hit games in four of the six. He leads the league with 58 multi-hit games. Chipper Jones is one hit shy of tying Robert Alomar (2,724) for 57th place on the all-time hit list. Freddie Freeman went 2-for-4 Sunday in Philadelphia after going 2-for-19 in the first five games of the trip. His three-run homer Saturday off Roy Halladay set the tone in an 8-2 win.

Pitching: The Braves have won Medlen’s last 21 straight starts, one shy of the major league record held by Whitey Ford (1950, …

Continue reading Next for Braves: Miami Marlins »

Chipper sits out his Philly finale

PHILADELPHIA – As expected, Chipper Jones was out of the lineup Sunday for his last scheduled game against the Phillies. It was a rest day for the retiring third baseman, who played the first two games of the series and went 2-f0r-5 with an RBI double in Saturday’s win.

Jones hit .331 with 49 homers and 152 RBIs in 245 career games against the Phillies, tied with his homer total against the New York Mets for his most against any team. The Braves have three games left against the Mets next weekend in Jones’ last regular-season home games.

Martin Prado made his 20th start of the season at third base Sunday, after making his 11th start at shortstop on Saturday.

Howard 2nd-fastest to 300 HRs

Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard became the second-fastest in major league history to hit 300 home runs when he homered off Mike Minor on Saturday, one of only two hits in six innings against the lefty and the first homer off Minor in four September starts.

Howard hit his 300th homer in …

Continue reading Chipper sits out his Philly finale »

Simmons likely to play Sunday; Hanson stays in rotation

PHILADELPHIA – Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said there’s a good chance that shortstop Andrelton Simmons will return to the lineup on Sunday. And yes, he’s been saying that for a few days now.

Simmons has missed four games since straining his left (non-throwing) shoulder while making a diving defensive play Monday at Miami.

“Bubba [head trainer Jeff Porter] wants to give him one more day,” Gonzalez said after posting a Simmons-less lineup Saturday. “But [Porter] was encouraged. He told me the rotator cuff is not firing just yet, and if he dives again and that’s not firing, he couldn’t protect [the shoulder]. It’s getting close, but he wants to give it one more day.”

The Braves are off Monday, and Gonzalez said he wants to see Simmons play Sunday and see where he’s at. Simmons was out nearly two months with a broken right hand, and has missed five of 11 games since returning from the disabled list, including one game (Sept. 12) after turning an …

Continue reading Simmons likely to play Sunday; Hanson stays in rotation »

Simmons might play Sat., but Janish out 2-4 weeks

PHILADELPHIA – Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons was out of the lineup Friday for a third consecutive game since straining his left shoulder, as team officials decided to err on the side of caution with the rookie standout.

“He’s going to hit [during batting practice] and field some groundballs,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said before Friday’s series opener against the Phillies. “We’ve really got our fingers crossed for [Simmons to play Saturday]. He’s progressing just like we wanted him to, and the thing that [head trainer] Jeff [Porter] wants to avoid is if he dives again, to relapse. But we’re progressing well. It’s doing good. Just being cautious.”

Simmons hurt his non-throwing shoulder while making a diving defensive stop in Monday’s game at Miami. He played the rest of the game, but the shoulder stiffened overnight and he hasn’t returned to the lineup since.

With backup shortstop Paul Janish also sidelined since dislocating his left shoulder …

Continue reading Simmons might play Sat., but Janish out 2-4 weeks »

Medlen or Hudson would start potential WC game

MIAMI – The Braves trailed NL East leader Washington by 5-1/2 games before Wednesday, with only 13 games left on Atlanta’s schedule. That meant that a wild-card berth and a one-game playoff against the other NL wild-card team was a more likely scenario that a division title for the Braves.

Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez has been asked repeatedly in the past two weeks whether he’d decided how he might line up his pitching if the Braves advanced to the postseason, and repeatedly answered he hadn’t gotten that far and was focused on trying to win to make sure the Braves played beyond the regular season.

On Wednesday, Gonzalez said for the first time that he would pick Kris Medlen or veteran Tim Hudson — not exactly a surprise — to start a potential first postseason game, or presumably a do-or-die game against Washington in the unlikely event the Braves and Nationals end up tied after the regular season.

If the Braves and Nats tied, they’d play a tiebreaker game Thursday, …

Continue reading Medlen or Hudson would start potential WC game »

Braves rookie Simmons out of lineup again (sore shoulder)

MIAMI – After missing two months with a broken bone in his throwing hand, Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons figured injuries were behind him once he came off the disabled list a week ago.

But no. The promising rookie missed a game last week after turning an ankle, and Simmons was out of the lineup Tuesday with a sore left shoulder after landing awkwardly on a diving defensive play in Monday’s win against the Marlins. He didn’t leave the game after the play.

“I felt good during the game, then afterward it starting feeling sore,” Simmons said. “I thought it was going to go away [overnight], but woke up this morning and couldn’t lift my arm.”

He spent much of Tuesday getting treatment on the shoulder, which Simmons was told should improve quickly with rest. He hoped to be back in the lineup as soon as Wednesday.

In the meantime, the frustration was apparent as he discussed yet another injury.

“You have no idea,” he said. “It’s just hard. I don’t know …

Continue reading Braves rookie Simmons out of lineup again (sore shoulder) »

Baker gets his first Braves start — and first hit

MIAMI — Jeff Baker played left field and had an RBI single in the fourth inning Monday in his first start for the Braves since an Aug. 31 trade from Detroit for a player to be named later.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez said he wanted to give the veteran a start and decided Monday was a good time for it, since Reed Johnson was 1-for-8 in his career against left-hander Wade LeBlanc, the Marlins’ starter for the series opener. Johnson has recently played played left field against left-handers when Martin Prado is at third base.

Baker was 1-for-4 against LeBlanc before Monday, and 0-for-3 with two strikeouts as a pinch-hitter in his only previous action for the Braves.

McCann update

Brian McCann missed his second consecutive start with tendinitis in his right knee, and Gonzalez said he hoped to have the catcher back in the lineup as soon as Tuesday.

McCann left Saturday’s game after two innings when it became too difficult to squat and move from side to side behind the plate. He was …

Continue reading Baker gets his first Braves start — and first hit »

Heyward racking up homers

While Jason Heyward has seen his all-around game get back to the level of his standout rookie season in 2010, he’s putting up some eye-popping home run numbers.

Heyward had hit two home runs in the Braves past three games entering Sunday to give him a career-high 27 on the season, nine more than he hit in 2010. Heyward said he’s stayed with the same approach, and is playing within himself, and the home runs are still coming.

“I was telling (hitting coach Greg Walker) yesterday after I hit that home run,” Heyward said. “’I just told myself do not try to hit this ball over the fence. Just go up here, try to put up a good AB and everything else is going to take care of itself.’”

His two-run home run in the sixth inning tied the game 4-4 and the Braves went on to win 5-4.

Teammate Dan Uggla thinks Heyward’s power has come with better pitch selection at the plate.

“When you’re more selective and you’re taking swings that are better pitches to hit you’re …

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McCann is day to day with tendinitis – updated

Brian McCann left Saturday’s game with tendinitis in the area on the inside of his right knee where the hamstring muscle attaches to tendons. He is day-to-day.

“We’re going to go day to day, hopefully Monday or Tuesday he could crank it up again,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said.

McCann caught for two innings and grounded out in his only at-bat before being replaced by David Ross in the top of the third inning.

“I tweaked it on the road trip a little bit, but it didn’t affect me to do anything,” McCann said. “Then today I was having a really hard time squatting.”

McCann said he would receive treatment Sunday and see where he is.

He has also battled shoulder problems this season, receiving two cortisone shots for a cyst and frayed labrum since Aug. 7.

Continue reading McCann is day to day with tendinitis – updated »

Minor leaguers honored at Turner Field

The Braves honored their minor league pitchers and players of the year before Saturday’s game at Turner Field, giving Braves fans a chance to put faces with names and numbers.

For J.R. Graham, organizational pitcher of the year, it was a chance to catch a glimpse of his favorite player growing up in the Bay Area in northern California – Tim Hudson.

“I remember telling my dad he was somebody I wanted to be like,” Graham said. “To be playing in the organization he’s in, and I get a chance to see him and meet him, it’s pretty awesome.”

Graham, a fourth round pick by the Braves in 2011, was a closer at Santa Clara University. He still has the dominant fastball associated with that job, with a four-seamer clocked at 95-98 mph, but he said he has used this season to develop his offspeed pitches as well.

Graham went 12-2 with a 2.80 ERA in 26 starts this season for Single-A Lynchburg and Double-A Mississippi. He struck out 110 and walked only 34 in 148 innings at the …

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