Braves still evaluating remaining needs

With the acquisition of Dan Uggla, the Braves gained the powerful right-handed bat that they were seeking to place in the middle of the lineup.  Now as Frank Wren constructs his Christmas wish list, he might want to request the acquisition of a creative accountant.

The Braves didn’t enter this offseason with a lot of financial flexibility and they obviously now have even less. With Uggla set to make around $10 million as an arb.-eligible player, the Braves essentially took on about $7 million payroll with last week’s trade with the Marlins (Infante $2.5 million and Dunn $450,000). 

Looking at the projected 25-man roster, the Braves could benefit from adding a veteran reliever and improving their depth in both the infield and outfield. With Diory Hernandez standing as the most likely candidate to begin the season as a utility infielder who can play shortstop, there would certainly be reason to believe this could be a priority. 

But before strengthening his outfield or infield depth, Wren may look to ensure he has enough money to provide Craig Kimbrel and Jonny Venters the influence of somebody who has previously closed in the Majors. 

Somebody like J.J. Putz would fit the description of what Wren is seeking in this role.  But Putz, who is drawing interest from the D-backs, could prove to be too expensive for the Braves who have these multiple roster needs and somewhere in the neighborhood of $5 million left to spend. 

Wren might find some more financial breathing room if Kenshin Kawakami suddenly reveals that he is willing to return to his native land and pitch for one of the Japanese professional clubs that have said they are willing to eat a portion of the $6.67 million the Braves still owe him next year.

Before opening myself up to be criticized by those who believe I have bashed Kawakami while writing about this in the past, let’s remember that he’s not the one who offered himself the three-year, $23 million contract that he agreed upon before the start of the 2009 season. 

Nor has he had a chance to control the limited run support he’s received while going 8-20 with a 4.30 ERA in 41 career starts at the Major League level.

Still with this being said, it’s clear that Kawakami’s days of pitching for the Braves are complete.  At the same time, it’s become apparent that there aren’t too many Major League clubs currently showing strong interest in him. 

Even with the possibility that he might spend this entire season in the Minors, Kawakami has indicated he wants to remain in the United States.  If he returns to his native Japan, he feels he would erase his final opportunity to prove that he can be successful in the U.S.

Kawakami didn’t mind continuing to enjoy the U.S. lifestyle when the Braves optioned him to Triple-A Gwinnett last August.  The ballpark was just a short drive from the suburban Atlanta mansion (formerly resided in by rapper Lil’ Bow Wow) that he has rented the past two summers.

I’m going to have to guess he won’t find these same luxuries in Pearl, Mississippi.  Now that he might have realized the Braves are more than willing to keep him on the Double-A Mississippi roster, he might have to at least start reconsidering the possibility of pitching for one of those Japanese clubs that have shown interest. 

There really shouldn’t be any Braves-related surprises Tuesday when all
Major League clubs must decide whether to make arbitration offers to
their free agents.  This deadline really only applies to first baseman Derrek Lee, who is their only free agent who was ranked a Type A or Type B free agent by the Elias Sports Bureau.  

While the Braves would certainly like to gain the draft pick compensation they would gain courtesy of Lee’s status as a Type A free agent, they certainly aren’t in position to deal with the consequences of him accepting the offer to gain a one-year deal worth at least $13 million.   

63 Comments

Hinske at 2/$3m, take a flyer on a bunch of Josh Anderson types(if not him), use Hicks or Diory as backup. Use leftover money and Kawakami’s money to sign a veteran reliever.

Well there is good news on the horizon. Frank Wrens contract expires at the end of 2011. Shortly after that Liberty’s “hold” clause in their purchase agreement expires. We will soon be shed of Chipper’s and Lowe’s crazy contracts. McLouth will be long gone and Kenshin will be a piece of sushi in the rear view mirror. Our young talent will be starting to hit and we will have replaced this bloated management team, with skill and youth. We will begin to rebuild our farm system( a few position players would be nice). We will have released everyone’s cousin, nephew and son from the organization and we can get back to fielding championship teams that actually want to ADD key players when we are in a pennant drive. And maybe, just maybe, Terry Pendleton will be looking for work elsewhere. One can only dream of such a day.

mark, i’m confused by your recent blog. before acquiring uggla, you said the braves had 15 million to spend. with uggla probably costing around 10 million, and infante and dunn leaving, their salaries subtract 3 million equaling -7 million for the trade. with the proctor and mather signing taking off an estimated 1.3 million, there should still be between 6 and 7 million left. with a kawakami trade, the braves should be back up close to 10 million.

where did the other money go? this is what happened last year when there was such a controversy about the payroll. various reports never matched up and wren’s explanation didnt add up.

anyway, the braves can still make an impact trade to pick up a bit of salary. i’d love to see the braves go after someone like ben zobrist. reason being, the braves are one injury away from having a very lackluster lf and cf. zobrist can serve as the super utility infielder and give equal rest to all. this is obviously out of the realm of possibilities, but i just wanted my post to stress how important it is for the braves to not go after a one dimensional player.

I agree, bill. Those 4 contracts coming off the books look very good for wrapping some of our younger players(Hanson, Heyward, Prado) to extensions here soon. Security and cost certainty is something we need.

And like magic: Wren signs:
Outfielder Jose Costanza
Infielders Shawn Bowman and Ed Lucas
Utility man Wilkin Castro
To minor league deals. Can’t hurt. If they at least play solid defense, Costanza and Castro could round out our bench.

This is the leader of our team, who thinks his knee rehab includes golf and hunting( for 13 MM dollars a year)

Jones on the knee: First order of business with Jones is the rehab on his surgically repaired left knee. Chipper says it?s going well. He?s actually played golf on it a few times and it?s felt solid. He?s done some running and the strength feels ?pretty good.?

He?s been cleared to start swinging a bat, having passed the three-month mark since surgery, but it?s something he said he?ll wait a few more weeks to do. That?s not because he?s hearing any alarm bells, as much as taking a more veteran approach perhaps. He called it the ?Bobby Cox approach,? having learned that when you think you?re ready, take another day.

?I?m ready to hit right now, but I?m going to give it another week or two of weights and rest and hopefully getting that much more strong before I step in and start doing it every day because once I start doing it every day, it?s going to take it?s toll at the beginning,? Jones said. ?I just want to be as in shape as possible when I start.?

He normally starts hitting at the first of the year. This time he plans to start a little before Christmas.

Jones did confess to having a bit of a scare on a recent hunting trip in Kansas with former Brave Adam LaRoche when he stepped in a hole with is left foot, of course.

?It sent chills up my spine when I did it,? Jones said. ?But nothing bad happened.?

He?s been able to ?climb trees and walk miles upon miles of rough terrain? on these hunting trips, if you?re looking for a good sign.

Well I guess it’s confirmed, Chipper is a lazy slug. Hunting instead of rehabbing, putting off hitting even though he’s cleared and calling Fredi to make sure they weren’t gonna have to show up in shape despite the new manager. Guess that explains why we wind up with so many hamstring, groin and oblique injuries(Martin excepted of course).

Bill,
I think you are reading too much into this. While I’ll agree that Chipper doesn’t have the same work ethic as Prado, those hunting trips are actually improving his strength, endurance, and balance. Which is the same as rehab. Plus, I’m sure he’s wearing a protective brace whenever he does those activities. What we need to worry about with Jones is that he will overcompensate any lack of leg strength by using his upper body more, thus, opening him up to another injury. We need to get a guy who can play LF/CF consitently. Chipper is going to miss some games, the only questions is how many.

Hahahahaha! You think Wren will be gone after the 2011 season??? Why would you not extend the contract of a guy who has done a great job? That also goes for Chipper Jones.

Chipper is pretty much the Braves version of the Mona Lisa. Everyone sees what they want to see.
If you want to make the case that he is lazy and doesn’t really want to work, that is what you will see.
If you want to think of him as the superstar answer to all Braves questions then everything he is doing is pointing in the right direction at exactly the right pace.
I’m going to assume his “love of the game” is still at a level that he will have himself as ready as he can when he needs to be ready. If he doesn’t have that drive, he won’t come back to be embarrassed. The issue that isn’t going to go away is that even prior to the injury he had become a take it the other way guy with average power who had been a .265 hitter for 1,000 plate appearances, with visibly slower hands. I’m not sure what rehab is going to answer that question. Fully 15% of his OPS for the last 2 years has been walks. That is double the “old” Chipper, and not a very good sign for a 3 hole hitter.

Rother, he should not be a 3 hitter in my opinion. However, i think we all know we will see him there in the spring…

How bout the ones he signed to the 40 man roster like Matt Young Deldago and Cory Gearrin? Is Young going to fight for the Cf job or are they going to give it to Mclouth or are they going after one of the Uptons even though they trade for Uggla?

You know what’s funny is that I wrote a rant about Chipper’s offseason training regimen a few days before the Carroll Rogers article confirmed what I said. Chip’s just in it for the nickels from here forward. He picks up 30 million if he limps through the next 2 years. All the while he will be trying to keep that Lifetime BA above .300 by dodging good pitching.

Oh and Speedy, My late father went deer hunting alone up until his 87th birthday and I’m sure his stand was farther from the road than any of Chipper’s ever are. I really don’t think that compares to an offseason workout regimen with a hardnosed trainer(rehab). Jus sayin’.

Bill you can go hunting with Chipper for around $10,000 last time I saw a number. This is the tough life at Chipper’s ranch http://www.doubledimeranch.com/

Cant we just have the balls and tell Chipper not to come back and take his money and sign a decent closer or reliever. I mean why not make KK a reliever who know he may turn out to be a decent pithcer. I mean they are plenty of holes he can fill in the bullpen like as a long innings guy or maybe as a closer who know but how bout someone take a chance.

Just wondering but what if the Braves cant sign Hinske what is the Braves plan B?

Haha, let’s just “take” Chipper’s money and tell him not to come back. NC, you’re so clueless that it’s entertaining…I read this blog every day, and check back multiple times to read the comments, but I haven’t posted much at all. Maybe you should follow suit. Sometimes it’s better to be the quiet kid in class instead of the idiot who always has something to say. You’d learn a lot more, trust me.

Yea Chipper’s walks went up the last two yrs. but he had no one with 30 HR power behind him. Also didn’t Chipper redo his contract to feel up money to bring back Hudson? Also Heyward will continue to bat second until we can find someone with the OBP and speed to score the runs at he top of the order that Chipper, B-Mac and Uggla need to drive in.

Sorry NC, but I agree with the other bloggers. Please post less.

Over the last couple years you would have traded away the entire farm system, the whole major league roster, the front office, the ownership group, and likely the stadium if you could have gotten a nice Mickey Mantle rookie year card for it.

Leave Chipper alone. Remember the reaction when you were glad he blew out his knee? How the team faltered down the stretch without him? He will leave when he is ready, and he is better than any other option we have.

all i asked was if the braves dont sign Hinske what are their options?

Hmmm.. Let’s tell one of the greatest Braves of all time and one of the best hitters IN THE HISTORY of the game.. the franchise icon for 15 years “not to come back” so we can sign “a decent closer or a reliever.” Now you’re just really p*ssing me off. You’re an idiot, a retard, and know nothing of baseball. At all. And you flood the blog w such stupid comments that we all end up looking like fools. Sorry, kid. That’s just how it is.
You guys don’t see any value in having Chipper F*cking Jones on the roster? None? Complaining that he’s not slaving away every waking hour? That he doesn’t care and is only here for a paycheck? Are you serious? Really? I’m not angry just because he’s the last active link to the Braves teams that I loved when I was a kid, but the lack of respect from a bunch who should be in the top percentile of fans.. because we all talk about this WAY too much. If healthy, Chipper will perform in an above-average capacity and bring leadership to a team that without him would be missing that person (maybe McCann), and help the young guys and other guys who need help (McLouth) with their hitting. The second best switch hitter of all time is not going to be phoning in the 2011 year just for a paycheck.
And back to NC.. NO, YOUNG ISN’T FIGHTING FOR THE CF JOB RIGHT OFF THE BAT.. He is on the damn 40 man roster to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft, as are the other guys who were just added. Do you not read ANYTHING? I wish we could rally a virtual mob to run you out of here and back to the special ed class from whence you came.

Ok i get it i will log on here less if someone answer me this? what are they braves going to do if Hinske goes somewhere else?

Viva, someone needs a Xanex!!!!!! I think if Chipper can play it will be one of the last uninspired years of a great ballplayer. HE CAN”T RUN ANYMORE. His mobility is declining every year and he is doing nothing to ward off that effect. If he wanted to come back from major knee surgery he should be chomping at the bit to rehab, not telling funny step in the hole stories(insert Turkey Underwear here), putting off his rehab exercises and trying to get a free pass in spring training. If not for his own good, then for the horrific example that sets for our young players. You are a smart guy but you couldn’t be more wrong about this.

I have grown up watching Chipper play for most of my life and I think I can speak for everyone when I say that he obviously is not the same player he used to be. But the beauty of this game and the beauty of signing Uggla is that he doesnt have to play up to that caliber anymore. I think if he hit like he did two years ago when he was just slapping the ball everywhere, we would be fine(not saying he has to win a batting title again). We actually have some power now so he just needs to get on base however possible, though he shouldnt be hitting 3rd in my opinion either. He works the count good and gets pitches to hit, Freddi needs to put him somewhere in the lineup and take advantage of that, possibly second even though he doesnt have the speed for it. Chip just needs to forget about the long ball and get that tree trunk he swings on the ball and past somebody. Thats what made him stand out to me and you gotta capitalize on your strengths.

O and here’s you a good quote NC…

Choose silence of all virtues, for by it you hear other men’s imperfections, and conceal your own. – George Bernard Shaw

I think Chipper is at a crossroads in his career (or maybe the very end), and that the new sheriff in town is going to find out pretty quickly if he has any power to run his own team. Chipper can be the best thing Freddie has going for him or Freddie’s biggest nightmare. This is going to get interesting in the next 2 months.
As far as the money part, Chipper has never been about the money to this point, restructuring more than once to make room for teammates. This is going to be about how bad he wants it at this point. It will be sorted out by Spring Training for sure.

Hasn’t McCann hit behind Chipper for most of the last 3 years? How is that a problem? He has led the team in HRs and been as big an RBI guy as we have. I don’t think the Braves started scrambling to the Diaz and Co. bunch at clean up until after Chipper went out for the season.
It is pretty dangerous in 2011 to look at 1999 or any season before 2008 for a baseline in the current version of Chipper. He clearly has slower hands than he had in the past, and there are way more times when it is obvious he is guessing, and cheating out early on what he thinks is going to be a fastball. He almost never used to take those types of swings. There will be nobody in the on deck circle who can change that.

Also, he isn’t walking at a higher rate, his walks are becoming a considerably larger portion of his OPS. That is a different thing. It shows he is producing a lower AVG, and a SLG/AVG ratio that is lower than it was (1.61 or so for 2008-10, 1.84 or so for 2005-7), i.e., more singles, less doubles and dingers. Triples involve hustle and really aren’t a part of Chipper’s game at this point. Less average with less power makes him less valuable in the 3 hole.

Living in the Detroit area now I got to see Miguel Cabrera on a daily basis. He had nobody close to Brian McCann hitting behind him, and he got maybe one pitch a night. He crushed that pitch, and made three other pitches scream through the air as well. When guys were in scoring position and he wasn’t walked intentionally, he got them in almost every time.

Any comments on the Aubrey Huff and VMart signings? Both were over payments, fairly significant ones, for annual numbers anyway. I’m thinking it is a pair of calculated acts to jack up the Werth and Lee numbers and make it harder for the Phillies/Red Sox/Yankees to do business this offseason. It will be fun to see Philly chasing Werth through Boras at numbers near $20 million/yr now. He won’t sign until January or Feb, and there will be a ripple effect through the league. Not a bad move by the Giants if you ask me. The Huff signing may actually move Werth to the AL. Interesting…

Chipper’s success is attributed mostly to who is hitting behind him… in my opinion.
When batting cleanup, Chippers batting average drops 14 pts along with his slugging percentage. His OBP. drops 22 points. If you look back at his career, you will see his success in these categories as he has protection from the likes of Fred McGriff, Andres Gallaraga, Gary Scheffield, Andruw Jones, and Mark Texiera. When Chipper is asked to bat cleanup himself… or provided protection from the likes of Brian Jordan, BJ Surhof, or Brian McCann, his statistics drop dramatically.
Chipper is a prototypical #3 hitter. His success is mainly attributed to the pieces we put around him. Our failure as an organization to provide him any legitimate protection the last two years has been the main reason for his struggles. His walks have increased because he’s being pitched around. His average has dipped because he doesn’t see the pitches he used to. Plain and simple.

… the only asterisk to the above statement is his MVP season in 1999. I couldn’t find an opening day lineup for that season or a consistent batting order. He hit 45 home runs that season and batted .319. Did he do that as a cleanup hitter or #3? I can’t remember. Anyways, that season aside… he still shows more success as a #3 hitter with a legitimate cleanup hitter protecting him.

I will sum up the Chipper Jones saga this way,

The more the Braves count on Chipper for production, the less they will benefit from that production.

If we count on him to be our best guy, he has to be, or it will hurt us.

If we count on him as our 3rd or 4th best option, then everything we get will be a bonus.

Now, just plan the team towards whichever seems most realistic for 2011, and make it happen.

I agree w Bravo. And rother, I don’t think anyone on the Braves thinks that Chipper is going to be the most productive player on the team. If he isn’t hitting 3rd, his OBP should have him hitting 2nd.

I understand your point, its valid and backed up with facts very well. My only problem is that I dont believe it is relevant to the 2011 Chipper. I’m pretty sure we could put Pujols behind him in the lineup and its not gonna effect his power numbers very much, his average probably would go up significantly though. I love the guy, but I dont think he can get that log around quick enough to produce big power numbers anymore, though I could be wrong. I’m basing this on the swing ive seen from the past few years. Maybe if he would swing a lighter bat but he said “It didn’t feel right” after using it for one AB last year. He most likely will bat #3 this season and could be very successful, but only if the pieces around him (whoever they may be) perform as they are expected to.

Viva, I am very much in favor of just that, Chipper hitting 2nd.

Thank you viva. Your rant is exactly what needed to be said. And yes, Chippers numbers right now indicate he’s perfect for he 2 hole.

I have been lobbying for Chipper to hit 2nd for months now. I think the Uggla aquisition allows for that move. I think even Chipper knows that he is not a number 3 hitter at this point. He has a hard time catching up with the high fastball and its clearly evident. I still think that our best option is finding someone who can play LF while Chipper sits, because we all know Chipper will miss at least 20 games. In those games where Chipper sits, Prado will shift to 3B, I assume. This means someone needs to step into LF. My assumption is Eric Hinske is on the top of the list for LF duties.

Again U want me to stop posting ok i will if someone tells me decent answer. What are the Braves plan if Hinske signs with the Brewers?

The only thing worst than Chipper batting second would be B-Mac batting leadoff. We don’t know how well he will be able to run the bases. Glaus had problems least year but in the clutch that “big donkey” made it home from first more times than I thought he would be able. Hopefully Chipper can suck it up and do the same if he bats second. He for sure will not be stealing many bases. As I hit the road I wish to each of you who post a Happy Thanksgiving! Great posts this week!
bohlen@homesc.com AKA winboj
To answer your question NC, FW will sign a FA veteran that is not offfered a job by his present team such as everyone’s favorite outfielder from a few years ago Garret (speedy & great defense) Anderson.

Ouch! Someone just hit me over the head with a frozen turkey after I suggested we have something like sushi for Thanksgiving dinner. Funny, but everything seems backwards now, i.e., thoughts are clear and logical, and attention to things like grammar, punctuation, and spelling seems reasonable. So now I can suggest something for the Braves to do to replace Hinske, since trying to match a team that can afford to spend more aggressively doesn’t make any sense: make an offer to the recently DFA’d Delwyn Young. He can play 2B, 3B, LF and RF (and let’s face it, if Glaus, Hinske, and Diaz were ever considered reasonable options at 1B, he could probably back up there too), has power and is a switch-hitter. No, he’s no Hinske, but since entering his prime years (he’s 28) he also has not had the advantage of playing on one of the 29 MLB teams that are better than the Pirates. He has 3+ years of MLB experience, only made $444,500 last year, and is first-year arbitration eligible. Finally, the Braves apparently liked what they saw of his potential, because they tried drafting him in 2000 and 2001.
Thanks for your patience, and happy Thanksgiving.

Sincerely,
Your friend,
28nafsevarbcn

But Delwyn isnt a switch hitter but he is a lefty and can be our Infante but with better speed and a better defensive outfielder.

winboj, speed at the top of the lineup is totally overrated, especially with a team that can hit like this one. You want high OBP in the second spot, which is most suited for the Prados and Joneses.

so nc, you said you would quit posting if someone provided a decent answer. You agreed with 28snarfinsumpin. so buddy. it was nice knowing u. have fun hassling the phillies.

ncbravefan82:
Yes, Delwyn Young is a switch-hitter. Check Yahoo!, baseballreference.com, or mlb.com as I just did to confirm (it took me about 45 seconds on an 8-year-old Dell using Comacast’s ridiculously slow broadband to do so). Again, basic things like attention to relevant detail seem to be beyond your grasp. Did you even get that my handle for commenting here is yours, but backwards? (And yes, I know I added an “s”, because we are fans of the Braves, not the “Brave”.

Fun fact: Braves drafted Delwyn Young twice, both in 200 and 2001; he chose not to sign both times.

ok so i haven’t posted in a while, BUT i just read that The Red Sox and Jacoby are kinda sticky and he is a big trade canidate. So i think we need to go get him ASAP. He is what we need in center field!!

I know that Uggla is a great right handed bat and everyone seems giddy about getting him, but I wonder about Prado. There was one short sentence in of the articles about him moving to left. How does he feel about this? After all, he is the starting all-star second basemen. Personally I like him at second. Can Uggla play left? And how does this affect Diaz? If Prado is in left he should be there every day, you can’t platoon him, he’s way too good. So Diaz can’t play left any more. How does that work? Uggla is not a great second basemen, so our defense that was not great to begin with last year gets weaker. I think the jury is still out on this deal, I am not convinced Uggla was the right guy.

Diaz is a non-tender. Which is sad to say, because I love the guy. I think there’s only a small chance we resign him, but that would greatly increase once we see if Hinske signs with Atlanta or Milwaukee.

Has anyone heard anything on Kawakami?? We’ve got to get at least some of his salary off the books….
I agree Delwyn would be a good pickup, although I don’t know much about him other than his numbers.

Hello Braves fans, i would really like to see someone like durango he can really fly, and if you remember, brave has always had that first hitter that fly, like dion or ottis and with the contact hitters that we have a bunt hit from durango could be one run every first inning what you all think?

1.Prado LF
2.Jones 3B
3. Uggla 2B
4. Heyward RF
5.McCann C
6.ANDRUW JONES CF
7. Freeman 1B
8.Gonzalez SS

anyone agree?

Yeah, they’ve really gotta get Hinske re-signed, he’s way too valuable. Plus, he and Heyward seemed to hit it off.
Check out this Braves’ season review I found at The Dugout Doctors: http://bit.ly/fHK6th

I have thought about the idea of Andruw Jones coming back as well, but I start looking at what we would be expecting him to be. He hasn’t hit above 230 since 2006. He is not the outfielder that he used to be, although he is still a very good one. McLouth has only been under .250 once in his career, and we are ready to tar and feather him. Who is more likely to hit .250 or more this season, Nate or Andruw? Who has better range in CF now, Nate or Andruw? Who steals more bases? I would love to have the 2005 version of Andruw to go with the 2003 version of Chipper. Those guys are not available in 2011.

That being said, if I have a choice between the current Andruw and Diaz at similar money, I think I take Andruw. Truthfully, with Prado in LF, I would have been fine with Ankiel in CF because of his defense and power potential.

The truth is, Prado won’t spend that much time in LF. He will be at 3B most of the season. This opens up a real opportunity for a Hinske-Andruw LF platoon. I could live with that if it came about. McLouth is going to get a legit shot at CF barring a big move in Orlando or late in ST. I love the end of ST moves, like Grissom was. There is a lot of talent available in that time window.

How bout trading MClouth Diory Hernadez and a minor leaguer to the Cards for Ramus.

Not gonna work there NC. The Cardinals think pretty highly of Rasmus and won’t be willing to get rid of him unless we throw someone like Teheran in there. And we all know what happened last time we traded one of our minor league pitchers to the Cards for one of their young outfielders. I thought you were through with the fantasy trademaking anyways??

I am but i wish the Braves would wake up and try to get rid of him maybe sending him back to Pitt would be nice or maybe to SF for Rowand. I hope everyone had a nice thanksgiving and I cant wait to see the Braves in ’11 and maybe just maybe they are sneaky and pull out another trade for maybe Upton or a decent CF.

OK, Brian Cashman just called (well, he called somebody I’m sure), and he wants us to decide who the next Yankee shortstop is going to be. Jeter has a limited shelf life now. Once he gets to 3,000 hits, he is going to have to take a bit of a back seat. There is no way a young guy from the system gets called up to replace Jeter. It has to be a fairly young guy, considered “the best” there is around. So, who is it going to be? I’ll start by saying I think it will be Hanley Ramirez.

Thoughts anyone?

Also, NC, why can’t McLouth be a “Decent CF”? He is historically a 20 20 guy who had one bad season, and is very good in the clubhouse. There is no reason to assume he will ever hit .190 again without TP, and he was pretty good (.273 from Sept 1 on) down the stretch.

Let’s not make the mistake of assuming everyone else is a better option than the people we have. It was wrong to assume Tyler Flowers was going to be a 40 HR guy in the bigs after his phenomenal AFL a couple years ago, and it is wrong to assume McLouth is now permanently a .190 liability. If he is who he was when we got him, McLouth is that OF pickup we are looking to make. That would be the best scenario for Atlanta if it happens. If he struggles in Spring Training, they make a late move to get another guy.

IM not saying he is a decent outfielder its just that the Braves kinda do this where you have a bad season and your gone they did it with Escobar. I dont care if he was a cancer all he needed was to be shown some love by Cox and Cox didnt and he was shown the door. Maybe how bout a position change like maybe move him to Rf and put Heyward in CF and take some pressure off Mclouth. I was actually hoping the Braves would have signed Wily Mo Pena i heard nothing but good things bout his bat and he willingness to play I read he still can play the OF and some firstbase. Hes a RH hitter that can come off the bench and maybe spell Freeman vs Lefties.

“I dont care if he was a cancer all he needed was to be shown some love by Cox and Cox didnt and he was shown the door.” -ncbravefan82

So, you’d break up the team because you’d rather have a talented guy that is disliked in the clubhouse? Also, McLouth is better suited in LF than CF, but I certainly wouldn’t put him in RF where Heyward is. Heyward already bulldozed McLouth running towards CF, we don’t need to double the chances of that happening again, do we?

As far as Wily Mo Pena, I’m not too much a fan of a guy coming off the bench who strikes out nearly 5 times more than he walks.

Erick Hinske is coming back to Atlanta next season!!! http://twitter.com/mlbbowman

Great sign, but what does this mean for Matt Diaz?

Rother, I totally agree. I just put this post on the Braves facebook page. Tell me if you agree:

Why is everyone so quick to throw McLouth out and bring in Ellsbury? Nate had better numbers than Ellsbury last year and has almost the same numbers in 6 seasons as Ellsbury has in 4. McLouth is an all-star that had a bad year and everyone wants to throw him out. Give the guy a shot this year and lets see if we get the McLouth of 08, if we do then we get a 20+ HR, 90+ RBI, 20+ SB CF and we have one of the best OF’s in the league. What other outfield compares to J-Hey, Prado and McLouth if he gets back to form. That’s 3 all-star OF starters. I think the biggest question is if Prado’s going to be playing 3B more than LF if Chip is hurt.

Well I see the only thing the Braves could aquire is Uggla. Big Deal ! What a waste of money and talented players given for a second rate second baseman…Still no CF, still no utility player, Chipper may not last 50 games. I see third place in the NL east next season…. Pfffffffft

You’re an idiot, bogator.

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