Braves need to assess roster needs

Regardless of how they fare during the final two games of this week’s series against the Padres, the Braves will return home and have to seriously evaluate the possibility of making multiple adjustments to their roster.

As was proven with last weekend’s sweep in San Francisco, this is a talented club that is capable of matching up against the game’s best.  But there have also been far too many games when it has been apparent that they have obvious weaknesses on their bench and in the bullpen.

Perfect rosters simply don’t exist in the baseball world.   The Braves simply have to feel fortunate that they at least have internal pieces that could help strengthen their bench or bullpen.

Long before Cristhian Martinez surrendered Ryan Ludwick’s walk-off homer in last night’s 5-3 loss to the Padres, the Braves squandered a perfectly good opportunity to claim a series-opening win against a club that has totaled just three runs over its previous four games.

There are no guarantees in the athletic world.  But had the Braves recorded that last out in the seventh inning with their one-run lead intact, you certainly would have felt good about the odds of Jonny Venters and Craig Kimbrel shutting things down in the eighth and ninth innings.

“The most important inning in every single ball game that we play this year is the seventh inning,” Chipper Jones said after last night’s loss.  “If we get through the seventh, we’re fine.  If we don’t get through the seventh, we’re going to get beat.  It changes the whole outlook of the game.”

It’s been said so many times over the past couple days that I’m starting to feel like I’m Peter Moylan’s publicist.  But had Moylan been around for last night’s seventh inning, there’s a pretty good chance the Braves would be entering tonight’s game with a four-game winning streak.

Well actually if he had been available to pitch the seventh inning of last Thursday’s 12-inning loss to the Dodgers, the Braves might be carrying a five-game winning streak into tonight’s game.

Instead the Braves were left to hand the ball to Scott Linebrink in both instances.  Linebrink allowed the Dodgers to hit a go-ahead homer in last Thursday’s seventh inning and allowed the Padres to tie the game after he entered last night’s game with two outs in the seventh.

Some of you were upset that Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez pulled left-handed reliever Eric O’Flaherty after he recorded the first two outs of last night’s seventh inning.   O’Flaherty had thrown 30 pitches while recording two scoreless innings on Sunday and had thrown just 10 pitches Monday night.

Obviously, O’Flaherty could have remained in the game to face right-handed Nick Hundley, who hit .274 in 62 at-bats against left-handed pitchers last year and .242 in 211 at-bats against right-handed pitchers.

Gonzalez has given O’Flaherty multiple opportunities to face right-handed hitters this year and he has proven quite effective, minus when he allowed three singles to right-handers during an April 14 loss.  But this time he handed the ball to Linebrink, who has now allowed right-handers eight hits in 25 at-bats this year.

Linebrink seemed to create some optimism when he displayed an effective split-finger against the Mets in the ninth inning of the second game of a doubleheader on April 16.  But he has provided Gonzalez little reason to confidently use him in tight situations.

Linebrink hasn’t provided many surprises.  As Spring Training progressed and the first weeks of the regular season elapsed, there wasn’t much reason to believe he would play one of the key roles in the bullpen.  But one month into the season, it’s seemingly time to assess whether the Braves have to clear some dead weight out of their bullpen.

Heading into tonight’s game, Gonzalez knows he can confidently turn to Venters and Kimbrel. O’Flaherty also fits in the “highly-dependable” category that Moylan will fall back into once he returns from the disabled list.

With these four relievers, the Braves have the foundation of a solid bullpen.  It would certainly be strengthened if Cory Gearrin is able to continue pitching like he did while tossing two perfect innings in his Major League debut last night.

Most Major League clubs should feel good about having five reliable relievers.  But once Moylan returns (possibly as early as Saturday), the Braves may have to ask whether they should cut ties with either Linebrink or George Sherrill, the left-handed specialist who has made eight appearances this year and just one during the first eight games of this road trip.

Simply put, Gearrin, Jairo Asencio, Juan Abreu and Stephen Marek all seem to be better options.

From an offensive standpoint, the Braves are expected to promote another position player when they return home for this weekend’s series against the Cardinals.  Matt Young was sent to Gwinnett last Friday, when the Braves wisely opted to carry an extra pitcher for this week.

But when it comes time to return to a 12-man pitching staff, the Braves may be better served to promote Jose Constanza, who hit .347 (25-for-72) and been successful with eight of his nine stolen base attempts for Triple-A Gwinnett this year.

The Braves’ bench has also seemingly been weakened as they have spent the season’s first month carrying Brandon Hicks and Brooks Conrad at the same time.  Hicks needs to be around to serve as a backup shortstop and Conrad was Mr. Clutch coming off the bench this year.

But Conrad hasn’t played the field at any point this year and there are no guarantees he will rekindle the magic he displayed last year.  If the Braves are going to carry somebody who simply serves as a pinch hitter, they might be better off utilizing Mauro Gomez’s power or Wilkin Ramirez’ power-speed talents.


You mentioned George Sherrill’s infrequent appearances. What’s up with that? Is he hurt, or does Fredi just have no confidence in him. Can’t figure out why he’s tying up a roster spot.

Agreed. And Agreed. I was really disappointed to see Linebrink and Sherrill both still on the roster coming out of Spring Training.
I have started to notice differences between Bobby’s approach with the bullpen and Gonzalez’s. It seems Gonzo spreads the load even if that means relying on old arms and not so reliable pitchers. Bobby certainly rode his pitchers, but they usually delivered and closed down the games. I think Gonzo might need to adjust his approach.

Personally, I hope people are writing in to the organization and asking for Fredi’s head. If they haven’t been, they sure as heck should be.

I just couldnt be more agree jeremiah,,, let me add whats on my mind… I was watching the game last night.. i saw the first 3 inings… and then back in 11th… braves played awesome defense they were everywhere you could feel the intensity and the disaire to win that game… they sure deserved it.. I just want to point out some HUGE and AWFAUL mistakes made from the dogout.. leadoff double to star the 12th, to bat 4, 5 & 6,, pinchrun for CJ , Yes You NEED that runner to cross home.. that run is golden it already there ,,, from theree its just fundamentals to get that runner home ( anyone whos ever played amateur baseball before can tell you that) ,, so It is a MUST to move that runner to third.. DROP the BUNT! Move the runner closser… YES I know its our best hitter,,, the best wrisp BUT we are still playing in the NL, a league known for its good pitching, and fundamental baseball.. PLUS it was a lefty lefty matchup !! .. its simple! you still have uggla and freeman who only need a fly ball out to score that runner… ok you walk uggla with 1b open and pitch to freeman and try to pull the 2play… squeeze the runner home! : | I mean in those situations you must be agressive .. remember you only need that run to make the way for kimbrel… but ok, uggla singles.. freeman strikes out ang AG too inning over… Ok thats baseball you say.. bot of 12th … your pitcher gets out of the jam it wasnt an easy inning for him.. he is a 2 innings pitcher MAX. if anyone paid atenttion to the speed on his FB it was already dropping about two or 3 miles plus he had thrown more pitches than he is used to… Im not an expert but I belive thats a sign of fatigue… OK good to the 13th we go… leadoff single from nate.. great hes got TONS of speed very good athlete … ok now the bunt is made not the greatest of the bunts but yet it could had been efective IF nate runs on contact… I dont know if anyone saw this but before the pitch was made nate ran back to 1st thinking the pitcher was going to pick him up …fundamentals … when a leftie is pitching you take the normal lead and run untill he is clearly going to home plate… Anyway… bad runnig bad bunt out at 2nd,,,, one out.. top of the lineup coming,, prado hits a flyball to the rf line… ( Great play by the fielder btw ) … it was a 50-50 play.. what happend the runner thinks there are 2 outs so he starts jogging to 2nd : | … C´mon people focus! first base coach what u doing out there? Ok catch made doubleplay at 1st… inn over….bot of the 13th … the best hitters in the padres lineup to comee.. now letme see who should I send to the mound .. (I) yess the samee fatigued pitcher😀 great ideaa.. now tell me you didnt see this one coming? God knows how in the world got one out… if anyone was paying attention you could see his fastball at 89mph and most important of all not even close to the strike zone leaving yummi fastballs up in the zonee…FATIGUED ARM! .. this was screaming for help out there.. the result hanging slider …HR ,, Game over…
Please dont get me wrong.. I so much love the braves ever since Im little … I just cant stand this kind of decisions freddy is a great guy .. but it takes balls to play baseball ..

The bench is the weakest the Braves have had in a couple of years. Conrad owes me a world series and Brandon Hicks desperately needs to join Matt Young as a lifetime minor league player. The time for change has come. Keep Hinske and Ross, ditch Hicks, Conrad, Sherrill, and Linebrink.

Excellent observations and I agree with all your points. Let’s hope the Braves make these changes sooner, rather than later. Something has to give, and soon.

And Conrad looks like he’s letting his fielding woes get to him at the plate.

There are no guarantees in the athletic world, but you can at least be pretty confident that you know what will happen when Linebrink is inserted with a slim lead or tie game. These kids don’t need those vets.

Also, maybe a good rule of thumb is to not pitch a guy in the 9th inning who has never been in a major league game, especially when your closer is in the bullpen. Just a suggestion, even though Gearrin pitched well.

Not a bad write-up there Mark. Thanks for responding to my tweets during the game last night and at least hinting at the EOF v. Linebrink situation here. I know you and Dave have to maintain a tough balance.

Simply put, Fredi is mismanaging the bullpen. He’s made multiple errors and has in my opinion drastically hurt our chances to win four ball games. While the 8th and 9th innings are too easy for any manager to mess up — hand the ball to Jonny and Craig and call it a night — he’s forced to manage a little without Moylan in the 7th and has failed to do so accurately.

Thus, the only way to guard against future errors is to provide him with such great options that even when he chooses wrong he’s left with a quality reliever.

With a couple tweaks/trades/cuts/moves, this could be a playoff team. Without them it will be around .500 because the offense simply is not good enough to overcome some bullpen liabilities, that are glaring.

I’m thinking that Linebrink and Sherrill were added to the roster to make sure the team would break camp with a few veterans (other than Moylan) in the pen — just in case Venters and/or Kimbrel had sophomore slumps. Now that we’re heading into May, Wren can let the old, unproductive guys go and bring up the kids.

Typically when I read your blog I feel like I’ve been kicked. This road trip I have felt that way because of the way my beloved Braves have played.

I wholeheartedly agree with most of your pitching and bench recommendations. Linebrink and George Sherril sorry maybe next season, Brooks I loved you last year, and you made me leave my heart in San Fransisco. I almost believe that it is still in your head. Sorry time to go…

Molely (i know, it’s what I call him) please come back soon and call Chad Paranto to see if he can come back with ya.

a Native Atlantian and 22 Year Season Ticket holder

I think I’ve kept silent long enough…here are my thoughts. There can just be no pleasing you guys sometimes. You want Venters and Kimbrel out there every night when last year you all complained and whined that Bobby was overtaxing the bullpen especially early in the season so that when the All Star Break came around, they were going to be useless and burned out, possibly on the DL. Now that Fredi is trying to spread the work around, all you want is the same two guys only out there. I admit, they’ve pretty pretty great but you don’t want to burn them out this early in the season. I know we’ve all seen the writing on the wall about Linebrink, but I agree with what Fredi had did during the game last night. Linebrink gave up the crucial runs in the previous game, so Fredi gave him a chance to come in for one out to attempt to prove he still had a chance to contribute (just like Bobby would have done and you guys all know it since Bobby gave so many players second, third and fourth chances, ie Kelly Johnson). Veteran presence is still a good thing in the bullpen but, I agree, Linebrink has been a terrible experiment. Sherril hasn’t been as terrible as I thought he would be when I heard we signed him in the off season considering his numbers were Jo-Jo Reyes bad. Personally, I hope we just cut ties with Linebrink and keep Cory. And Conrad hasn’t exactly been terrible at the plate either now. I love the fact that he hasn’t been on defense this year, but he has come pretty close more than a few times in dropping a ball in the gap for some RBIs and almost knocking it out of the park even though he still doesn’t have a homer this season. I wouldn’t give up on his bat yet. And so far I am willing to eat my words about Uggla’s defense. However about half of the plays he has made would have been errors if anybody but Freeman had been manning first base. That was an excellent observation that Freeman has saved almost as many balls at first as runs Troy Glaus knocked in last season. About Martinez…i agree, he should not have been out there in the last inning last night (offensively or defensively) but at this point there’s not much we can do about it. Who is the best alternative at AAA right now? I’m thinking Marek might be worth bringing up.

Oh, that was Bill who made the observation about Freeman and Glaus. Good eye there, Bill.

Simple fact is with basebal u never know what’s going to happen in any given game. It all breaks down to the law of averages. Its such a long season and it takes time to see whether someone has It or not and it comes down to consistency. Even maddux himself didn’t have it every game. On the other hand, the braves don’t have the offense to allow for the slip ups we have seen from the pen. If we begin to click on all cylinders there we should be fine but til then we have to assume that if we have the lead we won’t come back if we lose it, so for now the need for a shutdown bullpen is imperative.

Uh-oh, Nobravesfan’s account must have been hacked. There wasn’t a single fantasy trade in his whole post or even a question. Did someone hit him on the head with a Baseball for Dummies book or something? Actually, it seems more like he was reading (yeah, I know, him–reading???) a book of baseball interview cliches.

First of all there guy u don’t know me. Second its ncbravesfan. Unfortunately in my opinion there seem to be a lot of extremeists posting here in regards to fredi and a lot of other items. Yes we have some work to do but this is a team game. No one person be it the mgr or a pitcher or anyone else is the issue. Right now we still need to build team chemistry until we get our offense in line, which I think we will. Fredi isn’t bobby obviously but he still has bobby’s ear and mind if he needs it. Give it time and it will work itself out. Too much talent on the field and in the clubhouse to not to.

NC – Kuddos to the somewhat coherent and semi-intelligent post!
Looks like Mark’s tweeting has brought in some of Atlanta’s finest. I’m happy the blog is getting more traffic… but you guys are ridiculous. 1 month into the season and Bobby’s successor is already being run out of town. This team is missing Peter Moylan. Plain and simple. Everyone needs to take a deep breath and step back from the ledge.

I wish you would step back from that ledge my friend…

ditto. Well stated.

Well stated.

dang it. Trying to agree with you Bravo. WELL STATED!

Everyone give the new and improved NC a round of applause.

Apparently u guys think I’m someone I’m not. That said, everyone has their opinions on what it takes for the braves to win. Mine, u can’t lose effing bobby cox and expect things to immediately be what it was with him there. Btw the last home game last season, it was amazing! Such an intensity in the park and against the phils. Not to mention I got my tribute to bobby on tv. Awesome day, even with the conrad errors.

There’s a poster here who proposes the most ridiculous trades (eg. Hicks, Conrad, and Proctor for Pujols and Holliday… you get the idea).

His username is “ncbravesfan82.” Yours is dangerously close, hence the confusion. Apologies on behalf of everybody else if you two aren’t one and the same.

How awful was that route McLouth took to that ball? In before Bill.

Jesus Nate. It’s simple geometry. You can’t run straight across and catch a ball that is going that hard. Cost another run. He’s allowed more than he’s driven in since last week. His defense is abysmal.

Let’s be fair here, that is really the only time I can remember McLouth ever taking a bad route. He has great range, and makes a number of good plays. Just because he has no arm doesn’t mean he is an atrocious defender.

Next stop Delusion city.

I’m sorry Brandon, but Nate is a club footed defensive CF. The heart of a Centerfielders game is his arm. That and an ability to get great jumps on balls hit to the gaps. Without those two elements(neither possessed by Blondie) he becomes a LFer who needs to be a big stick in order to justify his existence ANYWHERE in the lineup. That’s why I am so adamant about my critique about Nate. It’s not his fault, but he doesn’t posess the skill set to play CF for a playoff bound team. Too many holes in his game to be that. He just doesn’t fit any profile of a major league outfielder. No speed on the bases, no great defense, no arm, no avg and no power. I’m sure he’s is a fine young man, but we have carried him past the point of reason. The only reason he is still in this lineup is that we have nobody pushing to fill that role in the minors and Q-Tip hasn’t been able to trade for help because he took on that contract of Nate’s to start with.

Well Brandon nice to see you on the reality train, just don’t get off at the next stop.

My first dog was named Mickey Mantle _____. Ok, I was 6 at the time. Congratulations to Chipper for surpassing the Mick’s RBI total.

Man that was still a shitty AB for Gonzo. He tries to yank everything. Kind of like a mirror image of Nate Mc LongSwing. Little guys who want to jack everything and never use the oppo field. Fundamentals guys, fundamentals.

Loves me some David LongBall.

Boy it’s great to have JJ back. I don’t know what’s up with ncbraves but someone must have stolen his name when the site transition was made. Still the same msspelings but reasoned thought and no trade suggestions. It’s interesting to see that maybe there are 2 Braves fans in nc.

So far Nate’s nicknames on the blog comments: McLongswing, McSlouth, McClutch….have I missed any Bill?

Actually a lot. He’s been at this for long before you got here.

McRbi(recent but already a classic), McRagArm(duh, some people argued that this wasn’t fair), McMendoza(after his stellar 2010 campaign), Blondie(worst dye job in Major League sports, right up there with Wilson’s beard as worst hair, period) and it’s McSlouch not McSlouth(whatever that means).

Any west coast road trip where a team can play at least .500 ball is a good road trip.

Big hit from McLouth in the 2nd to get us going that inning. You like that one Bill?

I got a new one:

Nate McMultiHit

Doesn’t matter, Bill will never admit when McLouth has a good game. I’d suspect if he hit like the 2008 Nate he’d overlook it and still rag on his arm.


The mighty McLouth has a 2 hit game. Stop the presses. He’s raised his avg to .244. Next thing you know he’ll be competing for the batting title. The amazing thing is that its news when your former 2 hole hitter actually gets two hits in a game, a single and a double. I think he almost broke a record today by getting 2 hits in a game, he only missed it by 8. You guys really need a hobby. He still sucks, at the plate, in the field, he sucks. I wish it wasn’t true, it is.

“You guys really need to get a hobby.” This coming from the guy who complains day in and day out about the same thing over and over again to the same people.

Oh Brandie, it takes two to Tango. I wasn’t the one who was extolling Nate’s exemplary 2 hit game like it was the cycle or a monster hitting night. I never would have brought it up if it wasn’t your ignorance if the face of overwhelming evidence that the boy ain’t got it.

Wasn’t mine either Billie Bob. Might wanna get a new bifocal prescription; it was Zidane.

Mundane might have been the 1st to propose it but you sure didn’t waste any time putting in your 1 cents worth.

And I see you’ve wasted no time giving yours Billy Joe.

Hey, Bill, McMultiHit had a good game, and he is coming round. His average is creeping up, and he is starting to perform. Those are the facts…

McLouth is a career .250’s hitter. Anybody who expected a 30-30 / .300 guy was kidding himself. In the 8 hole, with the pitcher behind him, .250 sounds about right. He will probably end the season at around there, .245-.265, with 10-15 HRs and a like amount of stolen bases. Nobody else currently in the organization is capable of more playing CF and hitting in the 8 spot. OK, Wilkin Ramirez seems like he should be able to produce those same numbers, but he is a complete unknown as of Today.

. I’m with Bill in that I was expecting a whole lot more defensively as a Gold Glove winner. It must have been a really down year for outfielders that year in the NL. All in all, an average player and above average teammate. Not all stocks rise when you buy them, but he has done more than anybody we sent to Pittsburgh ever would have for the Braves. You can thank Jordan Schafer’s wrist for McLouth’s overexposure. As soon as that dynamic/driven/hungry/obsessed Jordan Schafer we all heard about in the January batting cages of Florida shows up in a game uniform somewhere, the Braves can start the transition to the future. However, as my kids remind me, a potentially good future is no present Today.

Cody with a “K” has now struck out 155 times in 317 ABs in AA. Any guesses why the Braves prefer to draft pitchers and trade for position players? He looked promising in Myrtle Beach in 2009, but AA batteries are too powerful for him to this point.

Talking about the guy the Yankee’s claimed? I can’t remember his last name….

Cody Johnson…with a “K”

At this point I am paying more attention to Uggla’s batting average than Nate. I fully expect Uggla to hit a hot streak, and when it happens, I feel our offense will become much more powerful.

Too bad batting average isn’t an important stat. Check out how their OPS changes in the next month or so. For example.. Jordan is batting .250. Hey that’s not so bad, right? Well, this “leadoff” guy gets on base about 24% of the time and has 2 extra base hits. That is not good at all.

Truth or Consequences:

100 10 18 2 1 5 8 37 7 21 1 2 .234 .370 .180

90 15 22 7 0 0 6 29 8 22 1 2 .320 .322 .244

Uggla striking out one in 5 ABs. That is a significant reduction over normal. That would translate to 120 over 600 AB’s. I had said earlier that anything below his normal 150 would mean good things for the Braves.

McClouth is showing signs of being the ’09 McClouth but has work to do no doubt. His glove has been fantastic in CF, but Bill is right in that he can’t throw, and other teams know it.

May I just ask – During this Peter Moylan DL stint – Where has Stephen Marek been? In eight appearances at Gwinnett he is yet to surrender an earned run.

Just sayin…….

I agree OPS may be a little more relevent, but you can’t say that BA is not an important stat.
If a guy hits .300 and has an on base percentage of .310. Are we going to complain that his OBP is low?
If we are going to split hairs, we should look at average with RISP and Slugging Percentage. Uggla is not on the team to single and walk. He is there to hit extra base hits, drive in runs, and hit HR’s.

Jario Valdez or whatever has been optioned to AAA, Joe Mather recalled.

How a “true” Braves fan should react to the Roger McDowell controversy – 1) I am having trouble seeing the gay “slur”. Him asking “Are you guys a homo couple (short for the very politically correct “homosexual”), or a threesome?” is simply inquiring on the relationship between the three men. If anything, he is guilty of being too curious… 2) since when is asking someone’s sexual orientation “homophobic”? 3)Making crude sexual gestures with his bat? Says who? Could very easily be confused with a baseball drill. Can very easily be misinterpreted… 4) To his comment “kids don’t belong in a ball park” – well, this was an afternoon game. Why was this father allowing his children to skip school? McDowell is right. They did NOT belong at the ball park. 5) Anytime someone walks towards me and has a bat in their hands I feel a little nervous… but he’s a baseball coach. They usually have bats in their hands. Are they to drop their bats every time they approach someone? 6) Since when is asking how much someone’s teeth are worth a crime? It is indeed an odd question to ask… but I see nothing wrong with asking that question.

Ok I must have missed something…what Roger McDowell controversey are you talking about? I haven’t heard about this.

Your joking, right?

never mind, just found the article. Funny how I missed it before.

Gloria Allred is quite possibly the most miserable human being ever to walk the planet.

All I know is that with the unfortunate recent events, Roger McDowell bat night and Derek Lowe Bobblehead night have both been canceled.

New information: Lowe was racing another car down Peachtree… not good.

Hey, when’s Conrad going to get some starts? We all need some comic releif.

As soon as Ibanez wakes up and realizes he’s playing a baseball game, Utley makes it on to the field unassisted, Howard stops using steroids, Rollins posts an OBP over .340, and the Phillies trust Dominic Brown enough to make him a full time player… assuming he comes to the show when he gets off the DL. As the kids would say, “kthnxbai”.

LOL!! It’s a wonder the Phillies are in first place, Brandon. A wonder.
But you still haven’t answered my question about using your bench player who, 1.) can’t hit and 2.) can’t catch. And as if you don’t have enough problems on the field, you got an angry, homophobic pitching coach and a drunk for an ‘ace’. Feel for ya. I really do.

You think Howard is on steroids brandon? I must admit I presume all american sportsmen are on steroids!! I am british and we always see your athletes get done for steroids. It seems engrained in your countrys sporting culture unfortunatly.

Also, if lowe is banned at least we have Nate McAssist, who surely could fill in for lowe and pitch a few games with his big arm?? What do you say bout that Bill?

The fact that you are British, Zidane, surprises me not at all. It explains that stick and where it is stuck. WTF is a “sportsmen”. It sounds like someone misses their cricket there mate. Explain this to me Z, what’s with all the funny clothes. Saw pictures of that wedding you guys had and everyone had a fancy little uniform. Even the 4 year olds carrying the ring. Looked like a Village people concert. Even your “sportsmen”. Rugby(funny striped shirts), Golf(you guys would still be wearing knickers and beanie caps if the game hadn’t moved to the US), Soccer(more funny striped shirts) and well, other than that do guys actually have any other sports(badminton, lawn bowls, anything)?

Wow, this Braves PR department is making overtime this week.

I think the whole McDowell thing is a big mistake. He was just asking those fans whether they were “pitchers” or “catchers” and the fans misconstrued what he was asking.

McDowell was always wrongly accused for the “magic loogy” incident. Same case here.

Oh oh. Looks like Roger is finished. “administrative leave”= you’re fired.

O Bill🙂, You amuse me! I dont think your rant was very productive though!

I am rooting for Nate McClutch tonight Bill, then I want to see you come on here and commend him for his performance. Deal?

So I guess we can close the book on whether Nate or Jason should be batting in the 2 hole and lower in the order respectively. Jason is killing in the 2 hole and Dennis the Menace is doing better at no. 8. I think JH likes the excitement of hitting higher in the order and McDennis can’t hack the pressure. Case closed. Boy if Uggs heats up we are gonna start winning a bunch of games.

Nice swing the other way from Nate McHit. You like that Bill? Soon you have to give him credit

The One Hit Wonder? He has his hit for the night. Comes in a non-critical situation. Dribbler under the glove of the SS. you csn take your nap now Mundane

I wonder if Brooks can play center????

McLouth may be the 1st player ever to have a bobble hands doll.

Come on Bill, that bobble didnt hurt the braves. He has good range. Can you deny that? Nate McRange

Yes I can deny it. He is crap as a defensive CFer. No range, no arm no instinct. His defensive skills are largely a myth of some time well before he landed on the Braves roster. Perhaps when Pittsburgh saw the decline is when they decided to dump him. I mean supposedly he was speedy on the basepaths as well. His stats this year, 1 SB 2 CS. The bobble tonite looked like his confused pick up when that speed demon Pat Burrell was streaking to the plate the other night. Are we even watching the same game, Limey?

McClutch filling up the 8 hole!

Oh no, Mighty Natey at the bat. I guess we’ll have have to hear about this for another month until Nate hit’s his 2nd HR of the season. My god, he on a 6 HR pace for the year.

Joe Mather – as the Norton.

Can anyone on this team bunt?

Nice one Barry. I cracked up kind of like Eddie Haskell would have. I’m liking me some Cory Gearrin. He is fearless. Pujols, Halliday, Berkman. Ice water

Boy Fredi is looking like the proverbial deer in the headlights. Mather PHing to bunt, wha??? Leaving Gearrin out there, no reason.

NATE MCPOWER!!! BILL!!! Time for some humble pie mate!

Wow, time for McClellen to think about retirement.

Yes, shocking. Lucky Uggla was switched on. Come on McClutch….lets get this done!


Indeed. He is looking good though. Bill needs to come and admit McMultiHit (4 times in last 10 games) is starting to look good.

Won’t happen. He’ll continue his tired rant. I bet no one has noticed Martin Prado’s sub .280 OBP in the LEADOFF SPOT. Where’s the criticism there?

Well Brandie, it’s like this. Martin has carried this team for the past 2 years while McLately has been hitting for 2 weeks out of the last 2 years. Get a small grip on reality junior.

Anyone else have a sudden craving for McNuggets?

Are you that ignorant Bill? I forgot where Martin Prado’s 2009 and 2010 stats mattered a month into 2011, where he is hitting worse than McLouth and still hitting leadoff, despite not being able to get on base, and never been having the speed for a leadoff guy, while our team is playing sub .500 ball. Don’t worry man, we’ll just put at 2011 Martin Prado baseball card in the game; boy do those past two seasons look good!

Brandie, you just don’t have a clue do you? Maybe you should find out if there is a soccer game on.

Obviously you don’t have a clue. You criticize McLouth for his performance, but don’t say a word about Prado’s bad play. Yes we get it, Prado had a great 2009-2010, but as I recall, McLouth had a great 2008-2009. But baseball games aren’t won by numbers put up by players last year. All that matters is today. Martin Prado is not hitting like Martin Prado today. He is putting up a negative WAR this year. As I say this, he hits a double….

Exactly, thanks brandon for exposing Bill. He simply has something against Nate McMultiHit. I dont know why, he plays good defense (ok he has a bad arm but has good range), he is a good teammate and he is starting to hit. And he isnt slow whatever his stolen base % says.

Bill should get behind the team, espicially when the evidence is Nate McClutch is really heating up.

Bill is losing his credibility fast on these comments with his constant abuse of Nate McPower.

So, Bill, lets just get behind the braves and ALL their players, including Nate!

Rah, rah. Let’s all be clueless fans!!!!

Clueless when nates average is on the way up and his defence has been good all year???? He even got his first homer of the season. THings are turning round for him, he is having good at bats and making good swings. But you just beat up on him in spite of all the evidence showing nate is starting to make some real contributions.

26 pitch inning. Maybe we can wear them out quick and expose their bullpen.

Boy t


O dear Billy Boy, nobody said he sucks! He is amazing. But Branden was just pointing out how inconsistant you are. By the way, who worked a walk in that inning to ge to prado? Thats right, Nate McGoodEye!

Nice to the bottom of the line up showing some production. Uggla is killing this team at the moment though.

Zippee, you really don’t understand the game at all, do you? The hitter in front of the pitcher is supposed to expand his strike zone. you don’t look at 4 pitches. The bottom of line up showing production. PRADO DROVE IN THE RUNS. Geez. It’s like teaching kindergarten in here.

I wouldn’t let you educate farm animals.

Now he’s complaining that McLouth scored a run. He is bat shit insane.

What a great game from Beachy.

I am seriously beginning to get annoyed at the mismanagement in late inning games. Venters should have entered at the beginning of the inning, and Kimbrel in the 9th. This has been mismanaged several times this year.

This is a mediocre team. The bullpen is overrated and too young at the back end. No shut down starter, no speed and as always with Braves teams no clutch hitting… Not a playoff team.

Marvin Hudson just did a GREAT imitation of Leslie Nielson.

This team is so mediocre. They can’t do anything. Cant hold lead. Can’t score more than 3 runs a game. No clutch hitting. No shunt down starter. This may be one of the worst braves teams we have seen in a while.

We badly need uggla to start contributing.

Mather get’s a start… let’s see how this goes.

Is Mather a better at first than Hinske or something? Why isn’t Hinske getting the start?

Lefty-Righty matchup is a safe assumption.

That’s great news for Rodger, 2 week suspension and a fine. Could of been a lot worse.

Great production from bottom of the order! Nate McRallystarter right in the middle of it!

Wait a gosh dern second, you mean that it’s a good thing that everyone in your lineup is able to hit and rive in and score runs? Blasphemy! The sole reason for having a number 8 hitter is just to display how bad he is and ridicule him in the comments of a blog.

McClutch draws and walk, and conrad drives in the winning run. Bottom of the order wins this one for the braves. I think Bill should refrain from posting on here for at least a week as punishment for ragging on the bottom of the order after today!!

Boy Prado and Conrad really suck don’t they? fools……

Conrad: 1 walk off hit. San Fransisco Giants: 1 World Series. EVERYBODY WINS.

Nothing about McClutch Billy boy? Another solid game for him……nice you ignored it!

I light of recent news, I’ll just leave this here…

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