Heyward promoted to Gwinnett

When Jason Heyward arrived for his first Major League Spring Training in February, he said that his goal was to finish this season in the Majors.   Nearing the end of a stellar season, the recently-turned 20-year-old prospect now finds himself just one step away.  

While there’s a chance that Heyward’s ultimate goal will go unfulfilled this year, he’ll at least have the opportunity to attempt to help the Triple-A Gwinnett Braves win meaningful games over the next couple of days and weeks.

The Braves announced Saturday that Heyward had been promoted to the Gwinnett roster.    After being promoted to Double-A Mississippi in early July, the highly-touted prospect had hit .352 with seven homers, a .446 on-base percentage and a .611 slugging percentage.   

If injuries were to create a need for an outfielder in Atlanta, there’s a chance that Heyward could receive the call.   But for now, it appears that his targeted Major League debut will likely occur during the 2010 season.  

The Braves decision to promote Heyward was primarily based on their desire for him to help the Gwinnett club, which is one win away from clinching a spot in the International League playoffs.  

“Jason has played well at Double-A,” Braves general manager Frank Wren said.  “So he was the player the player development staff felt could help the Gwinnett club during the playoffs.”   

Heyward,  who combined to hit .322 with 17 homers and a .561 slugging percentage with Class A-Advanced Myrtle Beach and Mississippi this year, batted third during his debut with Gwinnett on Saturday night.  

When the Braves took Heyward with the 14th overall selection in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, they knew they had something special.   But the young outfielder, who is scheduled to participate in the Arizona Fall League may have already exceeded early expectations.   

With their midseason evaluations this year,  Baseball America tabbed Heyward as the game’s top overall prospect.
   
One veteran scout said that Heyward’s talent, intellect and  poise make him the most impressive prospect he’s seen since Derek Jeter.   Another scout, who evaluated 24 clubs this season, said that Heyward was the only prospect that he provided with the highest grade possible.  

In other Gwinnett-related news, the Braves provided their bullpen some more depth by purchasing right-handed reliever Vladimir Nunez’s contract.  To make room for him on the 40-man roster, they promoted Jordan Schafer from Gwinnett and then placed him on the 60-day disabled list.    

30 Comments

Only the Braves would promote a guy to AAA that should be in the majors and try to make a big deal of it. Way to go Fankie you’re doing a stellar job. Watching your team not score against the REDs is making me Ill

Calm down. Wren has done a brilliant job, but when Chipper and Mac aren’t hitting anything it becomes difficult to score runs. Get ready to say bye bye to the playoffs.

I am galled by anyone who who even think of blaming Chipper and Mac while promoting the work of Wren. The problem with this team doesn’t exist anywhere on the playing surface. It sits in the dugout and a Club box. The players on this team possess the skill sets to win, but they are managed like a bad Little league team. Oh well, until they make some changes, they won’t get anymore of my money.

jclvbraves,
Sorry, buddy, but the Braves are the best in baseball at knowing their own. If they felt it was worth it to bring Heyward up, they’d do it. No sir, you’re not smarter and more capable than them. Quite the contrary.

Sorry Buddy but my dog is smarter than the group running this train wreak. If thery were so good at knowing their own why the Texteria trade? Everyone knew they could’nt re sign him. Why havent we made the playoff in 4 years Why did they lock up, the budget with LOwe and kk for three more years. Welcome back to the 80’s Buddy Oh and a real nice job they did with Francour Frank Wren is a TERRIBLE GM and we will win NOTHING with him at the helm

Yeah, by management’s own yardstick they went into the last offseason with two stated goals. Starting pitching(for which they grossly overpaid) and a power hitting outfielder. Well, they got two starters in free agency, one of which is no longer starting, and NO power outfielder. They have picked up three mediocre talents for an outfield that is now even more muddled than before last season. All of which have spent considerable time injured and unavailable(Church, McLouth and Anderson). Now we have Diaz(great hitter, limited defense) playing right field because our left fielder(anderson) is slower than a gopher tortoise and he regularly dogs balls that get past him. Centerfield is kond of a carousel with injuries dominating the CF du jour.
On top of all that we have a National Designated Hitter who can’t hit and a favored son second baseman who can’t hit or field. But this is the management who is “the best in baseball at knowing their own”? GIVE ME A BREAK!!!!!!

I can’t believe i’m about to say this but Chipper is no longer useful to the Braves & i’m done watching their losing ways. How many games have they gotten 1 hit, no hit into the 6th inning or later, 1 run, 0 runs, i’m sorry to say it but when they make some changes including changing the front office, & changing the core of the Braves, i’m done watching the Braves. They are definitely out of the playoff hunt. tips for next year–keep Javy V., Huddy, D. Lowe, along with Tommy Hanson, & Jair in the rotation. The power bat (or 2) is the only way this team competes as well as a legitimate leadoff hitter whom can steal 40-50 & get on at a .400 ops.

Football season has come…peace Bravos

I think Chip gets a pass for having a rough year. He has the highest batting average, averaged out from 2006 to 2008. Everbody has a rough season once in a while.

Bill, could you possibly cry any harder? I mean MAYBE I could understand if you were even remotely correct in your pathetic whining, but you’re not. If you really think Frank Wren is what’s wrong with this team, then you are just a moron of monumental proportions. I’m sure you think you could do things 100x better, but unlike your idiotic whining ***, Wren doesn’t have the benefit of hindsight when making desicions.

On top of that, the only thing you can really fault Wren for is not getting a real power bat. But even then, Wren can only work with what he’s got. I mean, I’m sure your trade idea of 6 no name prospects for Matt Holliday sounded great in your head, but the people who are actually in charge of these things aren’t nearly as stupid as you. And if he’d given up anybody worth a damn, you’d be crying about that.

You’re just a crying, armchair GM and fair weather fan who lives in some kind of magical stupid-land where you think you can have your cake and eat it too.

Please do us all a favor and stop watching the Braves so you can stop plaguing us with your colossal stupidity.

Let’s put Heyward in the Majors. How is his speed?

Chipper has single-handed killed the offense on this team. He is finished. 18 errors and a terrible Aug and now Sept when the team needed him to step up, what do we get? Stop blaming Wren or Bobby or anyone else. This team had the pitching all year. Bat Chipper 8th and get over it. It is time to make Escobar the 3bman and bring up anyone to play SS. The pitchers on this team deserve better.

I would trade for Scott Rolen for Chipper. The call him Mr. Glass.

I dont know Bill and I dontr know you but Bill’s right about Neverwren he is a terrible GM NO ONE offered Derrik Lowe 15 million a year because at best he’ds been average. To pay him and an unproven Kamanaki 22 million or 22% of the payroll was reckless and monumently stupid even for him. Its not hind site its plain common sense. He is 37 and done who really gave a s h i… if the Mets got him you already had jj Vasquez Hanson kk and Hudson coming back He took a player that cripples the ability to keep vasquez soriano gonzo Hudson for nothing. He trades Francour for nothing Church is garbage and if we had Dunn we would make the play offs But keep encouraging him because he has turned back time to the 80’s enjoy the next 10 years of losing and keep telling yourself how smart he his

I guarantee the same people bashing management and team moves right now, if we somehow pull a playoff run, they will be first in line praising the team. Do us a favor and go be Yankee fans, and leave the Braves to real fans.

Let’s all slow down and think about things a little more. For those of you who blame Wren, Schuerholz is still the president of the club. This means that no decision gets made without his approval. Therefore, nothing has changed except the name that gets credit or blame. I would also like to see a comparison of the Braves’ record for this year at this point with last year at this point. I know they won’t make the playoffs, but at least they have a winning record and are headed in the right direction. The future is brighter than it has been in a while.

Let’s all slow down and think about things a little more. For those of you who blame Wren, Schuerholz is still the president of the club. This means that no decision gets made without his approval. Therefore, nothing has changed except the name that gets credit or blame. I would also like to see a comparison of the Braves’ record for this year at this point with last year at this point. I know they won’t make the playoffs, but at least they have a winning record and are headed in the right direction. The future is brighter than it has been in a while.

Are people REALLY complaining about the Franceour trade? Do you evev WATCH baseball, or have you forgotten just how purely awful he was? If you want to hate Wren, at least have legitimate reasons to do so.

If Church us garbage, then Francoeur is a rotting pile of manure and failure.

I guess we have all accepted the fact that the Braves will not be in the post season again this year due to the recent 4 game losing streak.
I don’t understand what is going on with this team. I almost feel sorry for the starting staff. Every time they make one mistake, the game is over. Every pitcher makes a minimum of 5 to 10 mistakes a game. For some reason, the Braves unable to take advantage of these mistakes. I hope that Chipper’s decline this year is not a sign of deteriorating skills, but a 3rd place hitter cannot hit 220 over a 70 game stretch and expect the team to be successful. I know that if you look at the stats, the Braves probably look good with RISP, but I am certain that a lot of that damage is done during lopsided games. Hey Mark – any stats of the Braves with RISP when they are down by 3 runs or less?? I am certain it has to be below 200, while their opponents are probably over 300. GA stats look decent, but he is basically a 290 hitter at this point in his career with no speed, limited power, and a defensive liability. I know Adam Dunn was too expensive, but can you imagine this team with Dunn instead of GA.

The one item that I can’t understand and is a direct reflection of management is Greg Norton. He can no longer hit, but the Braves sent him out there in key situations over and over again just to watch him fail. I am not cliaming that he is a bad guy or does not work hard, but how many more games could they have won with Conrad getting those ABs. I would estimate at least five more games, maybe more.

Next year, they don’t need to look for a power hitting OF. They have their starting OF – Heyward, Mcclouth and Diaz. Trade KK or Lowe for some prospects and the starting rotation will still be strong. They need to re-sign LaRoache as we all saw the disater of having a 280 singles hitter as the first baseman.

I will watch every game until the end of the year because I enjoy it.

Next year has to be better. Say Goodbye to Church unless he is wiilling to come back at a bargain price as a 4th OF.

I’d have to agree, Bill you are an armchair GM. A google or bing search on “Derek Lowe Signing” landed several articles on his signing that were complimentary to the Braves. Fans had him in Boston, Philidelphia, Atlanta, and New York (Mets). I’m sure if I dig around more I can find more. There were several teams in the mix to land him, and the Braves won by offering the highest bid. He’s having a subpar season. If you will recall John Smoltz had a less than stellar season in 1991 until sometime after the all star break. The playoffs and World Series made him a household name. I’ll judge Lowe at the end of next year. The pitching has been better than last year, and the hitting has been better than last year. The Phillies, and Rockies are better teams. They’re chemistry, desire, and players, as a whole, are just a notch or two better. Things are looking up in ATL. The Braves are still in the hunt for a wild card berth though the possibilities are dwindling. When did you hear that last? 2005. They had a long, long run. 1991 -2005. Give it a rest.

The Braves are not going to trade Lowe simply because they can’t. Nobody is going to take on that huge contract given his performance this year. The only thing to do with Lowe is to hang on and hope he regains his pre-ASB form, where he looked like he deserved his title as “Ace.” Has he been worth $15/yr this year? Not really. Has he shown that he is capable of being worth $15/yr? Yes. Lowe is not a bad pitcher, he’s just having a bad stretch, as does every pitcher. What separates the good from the bad is how long those bad stretches last. Lowe’s hasn’t lasted long enough to start calling him a bad pitcher. Plus, at least Lowe goes out there every 5 days and gets his work in, unlike that bum Mike Hampton.

If anyone goes from the rotation, it will be Hudson or Vazquez. Both are due ~$12 mil next season, and the Braves can’t afford to hang onto both of them if they hope to upgrade the offense. They NEED to get a legitimate power option somewhere on the field, be it 1B, OF, etc.

They say that pitching wins championships, but I think this year proves that that phrase is only partially true. A more correct phrase would be “pitching wins championships when backed by a consistent offense.” Take a look at the Braves and Phillies this year. The Braves have an amazing Top 10 rotation, while the Phillies have a great offense. Which team is leading the division?

If you were to take the Braves rotation and combine it with a consistent offense, you would have an amazing team. Just look at how the Braves fared right around the ASB when the offense finally started clicking.

Oh Downeaster, who are you really? Your rant sounds so familiar, hmmm? BTW thanks for all the compliments. I really consider it high praise when the mentally challenged group on here get’s down on me . I guess the truth hurts. I have been talking about Norton since long before everyone joined me. I knew Kelly Johnson would’nt come back long before he started looking like a carton character at the plate. I predicted Frenchy would do much better in NY when some of you talked about how he was finished. I even predicted that Church and McLouth would be busts, probably because of health issues. I guess after a while it gets frustrating being wrong, huh?

The only reason why one of the pitchers’ Wren signed this past offseason, Kawakami, is on the bench, as was mentioned, is to give Hudson a chance to showcase where he’s at so the Braves can make an educated decision as to his future. Oh, the Braves will say all the right things, like we’re concerned about his shoulder after his being in a 5-man rotation for the first time. But really, they need to get a good gauge on Hudson. If anyone had told you that you could get a starting pitcher who would have a sub 4.00 ERA for 8 million this year, most people would be satisfied with that. That is, unless you’re Billreef. Oh, and since “predictions” have been brought up—I seem to remember someone predicting what an awful trade the Kotchman for LaRoche deal would be for the Braves. Most of all, I was impressed with someone’s “prediction” that Francoeur would do better in NY than Atlanta. I’m sure none of us would’ve guessed that he’d see an improvement upon leaving…..or perhaps, it’s because Francoeur couldn’t have done any worse than he did for Atlanta over the last couple of years. The vast majority of the basebally industry laughed at the Braves every time they trotted Francoeur out on the field day in and day out. But then it’s all TP’s fault Francoeur struggled, right? That is, if you’re forgetting that one of the greatest hitting coaches in the game today coached him in the offseason and Francoeur still couldn’t translate that into success here in Atlanta. Oh, he started the season off with RELATIVE success this year, but he did the same in 08′ and then plummeted back to reality just like he did this year. Perhaps his trade to NY was like starting the season all over again. Let’s give it a little more than 1 1/2 months before we evaluate that trade.

And for all you Wren haters out there. Wren has been given a lot of praise this year by baseball execs and analysts. There were several opinions expressed on ESPN.com this past week to that effect. Remember the Yankees poor season last year? Well they righted that ship by spending a third of a billion dollars in the offseason. We don’t have that luxury. No other team does. Wren made a calculated decision to rebuild the pitching staff, while hoping that both Francoeur and KJ would turn it around. It didn’t turn out like he would’ve liked, but he didn’t have the luxury of hindsight. Both of them failed, and Chipper has had a down year. Look, I’m disappointed that we’re not likely going to the playoffs this year. But the team is headed in the right direction, and you can thank Wren for that. He refused to give up valuable prospects in exchange for Peavy, and, as a result, next year we’ll have a full year of Hanson and perhaps Heyward (certainly for most of it) and a full season WITHOUT KJ, Francoeur, and Kotchman starting. Also, say what you want about McLouth, but he’s serviceable and affordable. If we have two solid corner outfielders, noone is going to complain about a .260 hitter who will give us 20 HR’s playing in centerfield.

Bill, I love how you call everyone “mentally challenged” and then throw on the tinfoil hat every time someone disagrees with you, claiming it’s some type of conspiracy where we’re all the same person.

I guess the thought that the reason people disagree with you is because you are the epitome of ********** stupid never crossed your infantile mind?

“I have been talking about Norton since long before everyone joined me. I knew Kelly Johnson would’nt come back long before he started looking like a carton character at the plate. I predicted Frenchy would do much better in NY when some of you talked about how he was finished.”

And I predict the sun will rise and tomorrow will be the 7th of September. See, I can make obvious “predictions” too. But obvious predictions are just that: obvious, and meaningless.

one hit into the 5th inning so far…the Braves are choking yet again. Can someone get the figures on how many times they have been 1 hit into the 5/6th innings & been shutout or only gotten 1 run?

Maybe there’s a way to trade Lowe in the offseason and the Braves can pay part of his salary. It would be a sh*tty situation, but if we dumped him and paid $2-3mil of his contract, we could afford Hudson and Vazquez. Lowe sometimes pitches like the best member of the rotation, but has the inconsistencies of a #3-5 starter.

Wow downeaster, you just proved my point by knowing about all those last posts when suddenly showing up here. Things just keep getting cuiouser and curiouser. Your alterego has been denying all of those “obvious” predictions even up to present.

And you just proved my point that you are blissfully unaware of your own heinous stupidity. Just because I don’t respond to every single post here doesn’t mean I don’t read them and the comments, or that I am somehow incapable of going back and reading previous entries.

Bill are you Wren’s Mom or Dad? He didn’t refuse the Padres trade.. they did. He tried to trade one of the few players we have in Escobar. Secondly he was an a part of the Texteria trade as assistant GM so if he had been successful in the Peavy trade most of our prospects would be gone.
The GM’s that are praising him are the ones who are happy he has made us so bad we are easy to beat. The praise him because NONE of them fear the Braves any longer and realize it will be a long time before we can unwind the damage he has done. So they are happy with him. You keep saying we are headed in the right direction With the hideous contract Lowe has we will say goodbye to Hudson, Vasquez, Soriano, Gonzalez, and LaRoache and have no money to replace them or go get a bat as everyone knows we need (Actually we need 3) we have no middle of the order. We will win 8-to 10 games more than last year and far less next year what direction do you think this is??

Just keep him away from Terry Pendleton. As long as he is the Braves hitting coach, we will continue to have huge offensive slides.

All of you ripping into Wren have not paid attention to these blogs or the Braves. Whose contract would you rather have, Lowe (3 yr 45 mil) or Oliver Perez (3 yr 36 mil). We were rebuilding the rotation and paid a few million more for the much better player. Lowe was the last of the top tier free agent pitchers.

The correct answer is neither We didnt need him then and he is going to Kill us now We already had JJ HAnson Vasquez KK What did they great revamped staff get you 7-8 more wins maybe JJ numbers were better and I find it offensive he would give Maddux or Smoltx 15 mil at 37 but would Lowe Before you look their numbers Maddux and Glavine are better than Lowes He’s stright out an idiot

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