Chipper still weighing options about his future

When I sat down to write this blog, my plan was to take the angle that Chipper Jones will at least attempt to return next season.  But it appears to be too early to make this kind of assumption. 

Jones’ father Larry Jones told the Florida Times-Union, “Those people that are talking about him being done,he ain’t done.”  Those who know Chipper best realize that this isn’t the way he wants to say goodbye to his Hall of Fame-caliber career.  At the same time, I’ll count myself among those of you who believe he deserves a much more fitting goodbye. 

But before committing himself to the grueling six-month rehab process that he would face, Jones will first take time to talk to members of the Braves medical staff this afternoon to gain a better sense of what he is facing. 

Because this is the second time that Jones has torn the ACL in his left knee, it will be more difficult to find the graft needed to fix the ligament.   His left patellar tendon (kneecap) is no longer an option.  It was used to repair the ligament, when he suffered this same injury before the start of the 1994 season.

If they were to use his right patellar tendon, he would enter the 2011 season with two faulty knees and possibly set himself up to endure many more problems during his post-playing days.

Once Jones learns of all of his options and the potential setbacks, he’ll have the opportunity to determine whether it’s in his best interest to attempt to continue playing. 

When he was talking about retirement in June, he said that he would walk away if he felt he was no longer an integral part of the lineup.  Over the past two months, he proved that he still had the capability to be a key ingredient to the Braves success. 

But you can’t blame Jones for wondering whether he’ll be able to return from this surgery and still be able to provide his desired production next year at the age of 39.


What to do: When asked yesterday about how he planned to react to the fact that Chipper Jones won’t be available for the remainder of this season, Braves general manager Frank Wren attempted to soften the blow by pointing out that manager Bobby Cox can now put two All-Stars in his infield on a daily basis. 

“When we get Martin Prado back, it will mean inserting two All-Stars into the lineup, he and Omar Infante,” Wren said.  “I’m not sure we’ll find anything better than that on the marketplace.”

The Marlins are planning to sign Dan Uggla to a multi-year deal.  In other words, if they were to trade him to the Braves, we’d probably soon be seeing Julio Teheran sitting in the same starting rotation as Josh Johnson.

The Braves talked to the Mariners about trading for Chone Figgins before the July 31 trade deadline.  At the time, they were hoping Seattle’s Japanese ownership might be willing to deal their bad contract for the one that has padded Kenshin Kawakami’s bank account. 

With former manager Don Wakamatsu gone, Figgins is happy and proving to be productive at the plate once again.  At the same time, with Kris Medlen done for the rest of the season, the Braves are no longer in a position where they can trade the insurance that Kawakami provides.

There have been rumors linking the Braves to Orioles third baseman Ty Wigginton.  But early indications are that the Braves aren’t going to add an everyday player via trade. 

But with Diory Hernandez and Brandon Hicks now situated to serve as the only backup shortstops, it seems they do have a need to at least find a better option to fill this role that Infante has capably handled since arriving in Atlanta.

While hitting .366 (41-for-112) in the 32 games (24 starts) he’s played dating back to the start of July, Infante has provided further reason to believe he could be a reliable everyday player.  But the sole reason he was given this All-Star status was the fact that his greatest value comes from his ability to be available to play a number of different positions. 

With Prado playing third base and Infante playing second base during the season’s final six weeks, the Braves have reason to believe they would still have a solid infield.  But if either of these guys or Alex Gonzalez suffers an injury, there will be a gaping hole in the lineup.    


This is probably the best decision management has made this year. Minor showed his stuff and it actually looks like we are trying to improve the team for a pennant run. Kawakami is right where he needs to be. In Gwinnett where if someone else had to miss a start he would be ready. Minor was obviously up to the task. We need to make more moves like this rather than be worrying about what happens 5 years from now. Freeman should be brought up now so he will be on the roster for the playoffs. Let him get some swings before Sept and let Glaus sit.

Relax Bill they could have put Henski at third and picked up the Dodgers recently DFA outfielder GA. Well NC would have liked that one!

“At the same time, with Kris Medlen done for the rest of the season, the Braves are no longer in a position where they can trade the insurance that Kawakami provides. ”

Medlen going down was exactly be the time to collect on that insurance and put Kawakami back in the starting rotation.

Instead we send Kawakami to Gwinnett to “tune-up” and start the clock on Minor.

What kind of insurance is that, exactly?

NC It’s not all about offense. Our World Series Champion ss batted .222 with a career ave of .221. Even the great Big Red Machine had it’a share of only good defensive players. Our problem is we lack both to back up our great pitching

KK went to Gwinnett because he hadn’t pitched in a month, genius.

Brandon Hicks gets the call up. Wow, what a move!!!!!!!

Damnit there are better option right now other then him he isnt hitting in triiple a and cant hit in the majors so why are they bringing him up. I cant stand Frank Wren he needs to be sh*t canned and the Braves need to seek new Ownership that will put money into this team maybe someone like Mark Cuban or maybe Jerry Jones i mean someone anyone. Hell i would take Marje Schott to buy the Braves but i think shes dead. And them signing GA is a another dumb f*cking move by Wren. I mean i rather have had them sign Dye or Endy Chavez but not GA. Bring up Wes Timmons!!!!!!!!!!

Hahahaha. They didn’t sign Garret Anderson, smart guy. That was a joke. And Hicks was brought because he’s on the 40 man roster and his defense is great. He’s not coming up to bat cleanup.

MLBTR is all lit up talking about KK for Chone Figgins. Please Frank, don’t do it. He has a ridiculous contract and is basically a lighter hitting Infante.

Perhaps this just makes too much sense, but why not call up Freeman, see how he does at MLB level? Glaus is still terrible, but at least provides injury insurance at 3B and can hit coming off the bench. Problems solved.

Maybe I’m ignorant, but what on earth is wrong with using Brooks Conrad at 3rd base?

Please Trade Schafer, Lee Hyde, Vlad Nunez and Sammons to Toronto for Bautista, he can play the OF and 3B plus he has got some pop and is a great defensive player.

Also, I really hope that Freeman lives up to his expectations. His numbers are almost identical to Scott Thorman’s in the minors up until 2006. We know how well he turned out and his failings at hitting pro pitching led to us selling the farm for that idiot Tex.

That would have been good on July 31st, but now Bautista has to pass waivers. No chance the Phils let him, let alone contenders like the Twins or Rays or Tigers or White Sox.

cant deals stll be made?

i heard that the nationals designated dunn for assignment, but i think that was just a rumor, has anyone else heard that rumor?

Not a rumor when it’s true!

Why didn’t we bring up Joe Thurston? He was all up and competing with Conrad, our Lord and savior, in Spring Training. His minors numbers aren’t that great, but neither are Hicks.


NC, the team can’t seek new ownership. The ownership has to seek new ownership. It is called selling the team.

I hate to say it, but I doubt we will see any significant moves until the Braves fall out of first place (which I hope doesn’t happen, and if the team has the chemistry and heart we keep hearing about, may not happen).

I see trade suggestions on here frequently. Based on the time of year it is I thought others might be interested in the rules so here they are for Waivers:

Virtually every player in the major leagues will be placed on waivers this month, whether a team intends to trade that player or not. If nothing else, the sheer volume of names can at least disguise players whom clubs do want to sneak through so they can be dealt.

If a player isn’t claimed by any team in either league, he can be traded until the end of the month to anyone.

If a player is claimed, but only by one team, the player can be traded only to the team that claims him.

If a player is claimed by more than one team, the club with the worst record in that player’s league gets priority — and the player can be traded only to that team.

If a player is claimed only by teams in the other league, the club with the worst record in the other league gets priority — and the player can be traded just to that team.

If a deal can’t be worked out or the team doesn’t want to trade that player, he can be pulled back off waivers once in August. If he is placed on waivers again before September, he can’t be recalled a second time.

Or, if a team is just hoping to dump a player’s salary, it can simply allow a team which claimed that player to have him for a small waiver fee. If that happens, the team that gets the player has to pay his entire salary. That’s how the Yankees were stuck with Jose Canseco and the Padres were stuck with Randy Myers in recent years: They claimed those players, thinking they were just blocking other teams from getting them. Instead, their old clubs said: “You claimed him. You got him.”

In the past, many teams claimed players just to keep them from being traded to contenders with a better record. This year, that isn’t expected to happen as often, because most teams can’t afford to get stuck with a big contract if they’re awarded a player they really didn’t want.

Basically, we won’t be getting anybody good from the American League. And with one of the best records in the NL not very likely over here either, unless it is a really bad contract in either case.

Jesus Christ, Can the team have bunting practice on their next off day. Sometimes this team looks like it has the fundamentals of girl’s soft tee ball, my apologies to the the girl’s for dissing them like this.

Mark, there’s already a gaping hole in the lineup. It’s at 1st base!

Yeah, you know guys I’m really not sure if this Brooks Conrad kid is an “everyday” player. What do you think?????

RA Dickey gets a complete game, 1 hit, shut out on the Phils. We need to get Huddy a run or two so we can move back to a 3 game lead.

Boy, it sure is a shame Conrad isn’t good enough to be an everyday player, isn’t it? Not like all the other guys in this line up.

Brooks Conrad’s late-inning magic still burns strong.

I guess an “everyday” player would like hit a Home Run in “every” clutch situation he’s in. And make really great instinctive defensive plays “every” night. I guess he would have to get over the stigma assigned by management and clueless fans, who label him as “not an everyday player”.

I think Huddy wants some Cy Young consideration. Man he is pitching really great lately.

Well, Viva, BobbyCox and Bravomania. You guys got awful quiet. Maybe your not “everyday” bloggers. It seems your average is a little too low, so maybe you should just pinch-hit blog. We’ll call you when Brooksy hit’s a slump. How about that?????

Of course, Omar being another “bench” player has nearly 1/2 our hits tonight too. Man those “everyday” players must really be something to watch.

I sure hope we get “Angry” Wags tonight and set them down 1-2-3. He needs to get back to being lights out, or that is going to start being next big concern on this team.

uh oh.

Good win tonight.

Maybe one of these days they can score enough runs to let my poor old heart take a night off.

So Brooks Conrads stats this year in limited playing time would project as follows:
BA- .240
OPS- .810(behind only McCann, Heyward and Prado)
HR- 42(projected over 625 “everyday” AB)

That pinch-hit blog comment was actually pretty funny…

Oh, and I forgot to mention Conrad’s RBI total projected in limited playing time- 138. 138 RBI’s, how long has it been since a Brave had 138 RBI’s in a season? Hint: Chipper never had 138 RBI’s, his best was 111, Dale Murphy’s best year 121, Hank’s best year 132. Well, the answer is NO Brave ever hit 138 RBI’s in a season. For our franchise record we must go back to 1894 Boston Beaneaters. The illustrious Hugh Duffy drove in 145 RBI’s. I wonder if he was an “everyday player”. Do you think he was in the cleanup spot in the lineup? It turns out that Hugh hit .440 that year, with 237 hits , but only 18 HR’s. Of course Hugh only had 15 Strikeouts that year, I doubt he ever faced a Tim Lincecum sinker or a Tommy Hanson curve-ball. I think Brooks Conrad has paid his dues and earned his right to play in the Major Leagues, EVERY DAY. You armchair batting coaches don’t seem to be able to see what is apparent. 1)Frank Wren is clueless
2) Brooks Conrad is making a statement which will not be silenced.

As much as I disagree with it, Bill, I think Wren and/or Bobby will silence Brooks (or at least moreso than I’d like) once Martin comes back. It’s a catch-22. You have Omar with a great AVG, average defense, and no power. Then you have Brooksy with a low average, but good power, an incredibly clutch hitter, and great defense.

Brooks Conrad for governor!

Shaunson- The competition shouldn’t be between Brooksy and Omar, it should be between Brooksy and Glaus, and Brooksy wins hands down. Defense, baserunning, power and avg. no contest since mid Jun. Aside from the fact that Glaus is playing hurt just so that he gets the bonuses that accrue with AB’s. He needs the rest, we need Conrad. Martin will play great D at 1st, Brooks will play great D at third and Omar will be good at 2nd. It’s so simple.

Toronto’s current third baseman, Edwind Encarcion, just cleared waivers. After a slow, sulky start to the season followed by a brief demotion to AAA, he has returned with a new attitude and some good numbers including a very decent slugging percentage. Why no flyer on him?

Burt, you just spent half your post qualifying Encarnacion’s current success. Doesn’t that pretty much tell you why no interest from the Braves? He has been an enigma since he was with the Reds, who I think might have even released him. His defense has always been suspect, even if the pointy headed ,slide rule carrying, SABR idiots happens to say differently. Quite frankly, Conrad, Infante, Prado, Timmons, and even Glaus are ALL better than Encarnacion. He is the perfect guy to have next to Escobar. All Toronto needs is Jose Guillen, Milton Bradley, and Manny and they will have the best talent on the planet. Won’t win, but they will be talented….

Rother, now that last statement was funny. Thanks for the laugh.

Carroll Rogers writes on AJC that Chipper’s surgery was a success. Six months of rehab, and he hopes to be ready for Spring Training.

Ankiel seems to be trying to make an impression by hitting the ball all the way to Gwinnett’s stadium. Someone should get him to calm down and just try to hit the ball solidly.
I agree about Gonzalez batting 3rd, acziffer. Not a good place for him, and not the best the Braves can do.

So did the Braves find another 150 Avg outfielder. Ankiel is still somewhat new, but I am a little concerned. He swings and misses a ton.
I am disappointed that Prado is going to be out another week. They need him back and he needs to bat 3rd (unless Bobby chooses Heyward) Gonzo? cumon.
Huddy for Cy Young?? One run, no problem. Wags had a good inning last night. He has struggled lately in one run save chances.

billreef – I was away at a place with no internet and no cable yesterday. I kept track of the game via my smartphone. I knew as soon as Brooksie hit that home run that you would start talking smack. I just didn’t know it would be that much. I should have known better.
First and foremost, I LOVE Brooks Conrad. I posted this a couple of days ago after he hit the late inning home run in Houston.

However, I still believe his best value is cashed in late in games off the bench for both offense/defense. Piecing together a small sample size and suggesting that he would become the Braves all-time single season rbi leader in franchise history is a bit of a stretch. The guys has ice in his veins, no doubt… but we all know he will not hit 40 home runs and drive in 140.
Last night’s game simply proves my point. Conrad had a late inning home run. It would have been no different if he had been brought out to pinch hit for someone. He is most valued coming in as a late inning addition than a full time starter.
I still love me some Brooks Conrad!

I ready Bill’s comments as well. I think he was joking (exagerating)? That would be like taking Glaus May and projecting over a full season. I would bet Glaus has aboutas many ABs for the season as Glaus had in May…

That being said, Glaus had a nice swing to RCF last night. Maybe he is poised for a good run. Now is a good time.

Bravomania, I agree 100%. I don’t think that Brooks should start and be our everyday 3rd basemen. He is an incredibly clutch hitter, but not in the first 6 innings. He has crazy splits:

Innings 1-6: .174, 0 HRS, 4 RBIS, 6 walks, .287 OBP, .251 SLUG
Innings 7-9: .315, 7 HRS, 20 RBIS, 4 BBs, .362 OBP, .796 SLUG

Is Brooks a clutch player? Yes, the Braves most clutch this year. Is he an everyday starter at 3B? I love him, but NO he is not the answer to our everyday 3B issues.

Well put, Bravesman. You bring up a good point about those splits, and I don’t think anyone here has brought up how he’s historically nonexistent in the first 2/3 of a ballgame.
As far as him being the answer, all we know about any given player at any given time is how well he has done… which may or may not be an indicator as to how well he will do.

Well, been off the grid for about 10 days. Nice to be back. When I left, I was having this discussion with Speedybream about moving Chipper to first base. Speedy was quick to point out the injury risk of moving Chipper to 1B. He said something about the number of “touches” a first baseman gets compared to a third baseman. I pointed out that third basemen suffer more injuries, and that defensive injuries to first basemen were RARE.

Now comes Billreef and his Conrad ideas. I love Brooksy. But I love him where he has been most effective – OFF THE BENCH.

At this point, our offense needs an infield of Prado (when he returns) Infante, Gonzalez, and Hinske/Glaus.

Sure wish the Chipper to 1B idea had caught on.

You guys just don’t get it. If you look at this guys minor league career, he is a run producer EVERYDAY. No early late split, no pinch hit history. He has played EVERYDAY in the Minors and always put up the kind of numbers he now is. The boy can just flat hit. I know that convincing you Bravo is like pushing mud up a hill no matter how much evidence I produce to support it as I have for the last several days. His best season in the minors was 2008(not so far removed). He hit 91 RBI’ s which would project to 122 RBI’s with major league AB’s. Also hit 28 HR’s which project to 38 Hr’s projected. To go along with that he hits 30-40 doubles every year. None of this is new either, he has been reproducing these kind of numbers since he hit AA in 2004.

and talk about a ridiculous sample size. I have been using examples from 6 years of playing time covering 2004 to now. Bravesman does his conclusive analysis on 46 AB in inning 1-6. Talk about a worthless stat.
You guys kill me. It’s like talking to a wall. Some moron the other day says, well he only hit .238 BA this season over 101 AB. Talk about cherrypicking a stat. During that same period his OPS was .832. He could hit a .100 for all I care if he produces at that rate. So You can’t say he only hits .238 and then say well you can’t project those power numbers over a whole season. THEY ARE BOTH BASED ON THE SAME SAMPLE SIZE.
Oh and one more thing. He steals 15-20 bases a year.

And Bravo- he may not hit 40HR and 140 RBI’s but I will eat my shoe if he doesn’t hit 30 2B’s 30 HR’s and 100 RBI’s if allowed to play everyday. Do you think this team could use that?

Yeah, that Hinske/Glaus platoon really sounds great. Hinske is hitting .050 for August and Glaus, .224(much worse in July. A regular 1B juggernaut. Hinske hasn’t been an “everyday” player in forever and Glaus couldn’t get to a ball if it went between his legs right now. Those guys would be scary in a defensive platoon. It’s gotten so bad that every time Glaus gets a hit, He is “coming out of his slump”. I guess you have to think that way because he has only had 2 multihit games in the last 2 months.
Every wonder why Conrad has been so effective coming off the bench, that’s because that’s where he’s been since April. He has started 9 games in 4 1/2 months. Just because he so great coming off the bench, doesn’t mean that’s where he would be most effective, It just means that’s what he’s been doing, and doing it damn well. Even Prado said in his interview today, he’s not sure he will be able to make the long throws from 3rd when he comes back, Damn, I wonder where I heard that before. Put him at first and Brooks at third, You upgrade defense considerably, speed on the bases and power potential. Glaus will be fine giving his tired knees a rest.

well i am saying this someone needs to get hot or they need to trade for someone and someone fast bc Utley is coming back and Howard is gonna be back and i got a feeling they are gonna be lights out so the Braves need to get someone anyone that can produce like Figgins Wiggington Bautista or maybe if the Dodgers are out of it they can trade for Ronnie Belliard or Casey Blake and Scotty Pods

Glaus makes me scream. The Braves make me scream. We get guys on second with no one out and we can’t advance to third.

With the complete lack of hitting with RISP it is a MIRACLE that we have gone 15 – 12 over the last month. Even a blind pig should get a hit every once in awhile.

billreef, thers a reason why theres the minors and the majors. To separate the boys from the men. Now Brooks is great off the bench, and you can pull all the minor league stats that you want, but they dont mean moot in the majors. Sure he hit 28 homers and had 91 RBIs in ’08. But he hit .243. In ’09 Mitch Jones hit 35 HRs with 103 RBIs, and yet he only had 15 PA’s in the bigs. There’s a bit of a difference between Minor league pitching and Major league pitching and how much production they give up, so I’ll take my stats from what he Brooks has actually done in the Bigs against anything he did in the Minors, no matter the sample size. And you can tell he did a great job tonight, going 0-4 with 2 Ks

wow a blind pig man never heard that well i said it once and i will say it again we should have trade for either Kemp Fielder or Dunn now the Phillies are gonna take first place and never look back thank you Frank Wren u blew another season for us.

I would recommend adding somebody like Wes Helms from Florida or Pedro Feliz from Houston. Both of those guys can play the corners (and you have flexibility with Prado/Infante/Conrad to cover the middle infield in case of injury to any of those three or Gonzo) and would be huge improvements as far as hitting over Hicks/Diory.

Helms is owed basically nothing and Feliz has just a little bit left owed to him. But neither would cost the Braves a major prospect. And I’d feel a lot better calling on either of those guys to pinch hit in an important game.

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