Chipper sets self up for fond farewell
While concluding the 2007 season in Houston, the Braves had the opportunity to watch Astros fans shower Craig Biggio with appreciation as he ended his career-long association with one organization.
The farewell ceremonies definitely had an emotional effect on Chipper Jones, who left Houston with an even greater desire to enjoy the rare opportunity to spend his entire career with one organization.
I can’t find the exact quote, but I remember Chipper saying something like, “If my hometown fans ever provide me even a fraction of the farewell that Biggio received, I’ll consider myself to be a lucky man.”
Some time late in the 2012 or 2013 season, Jones might indeed have the opportunity to be showered with appreciation from the Atlanta fans who have followed him since the Braves took him with the first overall selection in the 1990 Draft.
He was an 18-year-old kid named Chipper then and he’s now a 36-year-old iconic figure who still fittingly goes by the youthful name. While his stoic demeanor might suggest otherwise, the veteran third baseman loves the game of baseball and has undeniable passion for the Braves organization.
In many ways Jones is a lot like many of you who felt the ups and downs of the rollercoaster that Braves general manager Frank Wren experienced during this past offseason. The inability to land Jake Peavy or A.J. Burnett upset him and as you know the fact that John Smoltz went elsewhere initially infuriated him.
Some of you might believe he should have handled the Smoltz situation in a different manner. But that was Chipper being Chipper. In the process, he provided fans a chance that he does indeed live and die by the daily events that shape the only organization that he has ever known.
It was nice to be around for Biggio’s farewell weekend. But from a personal standpoint, the emotions created that weekend will pale in comparisons to the ones that will be felt in 2012 or 2013, when the Atlanta fans will be given a chance to show their appreciation for the kid that they’ve never known as anything other than Chipper.