News and notes from Citi Field

Here is a Dan Uggla-free smorgasbord of thoughts to digest before, during and after tonight’s series opener against the Mets at Citi Field:

Jair Jurrjens admits it will feel a little odd when he is warming up before Saturday night’s start against the Mets.  This will mark the first time he has entered the visitor’s bullpen at Citi Field since Sept. 17,  when he began feeling  knee discomfort  during a side session.  He later learned he had a torn meniscus and was unable to to pitch in the playoffs last year.

Jurrjens has said the inability to participate in the postseason served as great motivation as he prepared for this season.  So far, his efforts have made him a strong All-Star candidate and one of the very early favorites for a Cy Young Award.

When Jurrjens faces the Mets Saturday, he’ll be attempting to join Ubaldo Jimenez as the only pitchers in Major League history to allow two earned runs or fewer and last at least six innings in their first 10 starts of the season.  Jimenez set the record when he did so in his first 12 starts last year.

Jurrjens, Randy Johnson (2000) and Lefty Gomez (1937) are the only pitchers to do this in their first nine starts of a season.

Catcher protection:   With Giants general manager Brian Sabean taking time during his radio show to blast Marlins’ outfielder Scott Cousins, there is still plenty of debate about what MLB should do in the wake of Giants catcher Buster Posey breaking his leg courtesy of his collision with Cousins last week.

A’s general manager Billy Beane told his catcher Kurt Suzuki that he does not want him blocking the plate when there is a chance for a big collision.  Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said he would never ask his Brian McCann to do this.

“You can’t worry that kind of stuff,” Gonzalez said. “People have gotten hurt coming down steps.  You can’t worry about that kind of stuff.  I don’t think you can tell an athlete or competitor, don’t do that because I don’t want you to hurt yourself.

“I want (McCann) to give us an opportunity to win a game.  If that’s by blocking the plate, then I want him to block the plate.   I think athletes understand that.  I don’t think you can tell athletes to go 50 percent.  He’s got to look at the other 24 guys in that locker room.”

Odds and ends:  Center fielder  Jordan Schafer said he was still feeling a little sore after running into the wall while ending Wednesday night’s win over the Padres.  With the catch giving him his 16th save, Craig Kimbrel said he owes Schafer dinner…Trying to take advantage of Monday’s offday, Gonzalez plans to rest Chipper Jones Sunday night and McCann Tuesday.  This would give both a chance to have two consecutive days of rest.




Big series vs the mets and big game tonight. We need to take 2 out of 3 minimum in my opinion

And we need to trade away lowe/conrad for a big outfield bat. There must be a team with a GM as stupid as Bill out there who would take conrad and give us something decent in return surely? :O

Some stats for these comments too. Uggla, prado, heyward and conrad (Bills boys) are a combined 139/624 = 0.222. Hardly great is it? Nate on the other hand is at 0.238. Interesting point for discussion

Not really. Prado is the team’s MVP, Heyward can’t feel his arm, and Conrad only has a hand full of at bats for a sample size. I’ll give you Uggla. So if you want to argue Nate vs Uggla, I’ll take Uggla every time.

Yeah, Prado really sucks doesn’t he.

You’re just gonna run with this on some blow out of proportion tirade, but before you start worshiping Prado as your God, you might want to tell him to take a few more walks. A .325 OBP is a bit too shallow for a 1-2 hitter. The only complaint I have against Prado.

Prado OBP for the last 30 .359 compared to his career OBP .351. Martin is superb in the 2 hole. Perfect for him with his bat control, ability to hit to all fields(behind the runner if necessary. to the rightside easy peezy. Beside the fact that Martin is a 40 double guy since he began to play full time. He carried this team at times last year. He does not need approval from the likes of Brandie in order to be an Allstar at whatever position he plays.

Boy Schafer and Uggla threw out Reyes. You think McRagarm would have made THAT play Zippy Monkey?

Damn that looked like it hurt. That really sucks, this kid just can’t catch a break. So is Young next in line if Jordan goes to the DL?

Niese better get a pitch in his earhole after that pitch to Schafer. It was clearly intentional as Schafer was squaring around.

I’m with you on that Brav.

Wow, Chipper crushed that ball. The old man still has a few left in the tank…

I hate that pitchers do that. They don’t want a guy squaring around like that for a hit so they throw up and in. Schafer was defenseless.

Freeman is heating up. He has been a slow starter in the minors. Let’s hope the trend continues….

Freddie looks great lately, he is going oppo again and seems to be seeing pitches. Reminds me of a slightly chubby(now svelte)backstop early in his LHed career. Last 30 days (w/o tonite) .323 AVG .819 OPS. That’s stroking the ol peanut if you know what I mean. ROY???

If Kimbrel can keep his walks and ERA down, he will probably be a runaway ROY winner. Young closers have been highly favored in recent years(Street, Bailey, Feliz). Not to mention he is already one of the top 7-8 closers in the league.

Justice prevails! Let’s hope the best for Schafer.

Is there seriously a limit on how many times you can vote for the all-star team???

Mark just tweeted that they aren’t releasing anything on Jordan yet. Man, I hope he is ok, this would be devastating to his career if it’s serious. Mostly I just hope the young man is not seriously injured.

Great game last night with one exception. I hope Schaefer is ok. I am having thoughts of Dickie Thon who was never the same. Based on what I saw earlier, not sure that Matt Young is the answer for a temporary replacement. I would prefer to see Wilkin Rameirez to get some starts if schaeffer needs to be DL’d. It is starting to look like last year with all the injuries. Uggla drew a walk – yaaaa..

Jordan Schaeffer has a broken nose (at least). I assume he is out for at least a 15 day DL stint – that sucks… Let’s hope nothing else is wrong.

He can play with a broken nose.

Braves announced Schafer has a small non-displaced sinus fracture. There won’t be a DL move at this time. -Straight from DOB.

We have to drop uggla now. This is getting insane. His average will be .100 soon. .200 is the mendoza line and .100 is going to become the uggla line

Cool your jets Zid. Uggla did not lose all of his abilities in one offseason. It’s not like we can attribute his previous success to whatever is in the water in Toronto, or having a ball park like Citizens Bank or Coors Field. He’s just in a slump. All ML hitters have one at some time or another. He can refuse a AAA assignment anyway. We just need to give it time. Now just calm down. I think you’re just doing this because he’s Bill’s boy. There’s no need for this; we still have Brooks to criticize.

Uggla is interesting. Is it possible for someone to have a decline in skills like this overnight? He has 30 HRs for 4 straight years and a good batting average last year. If Heyward, McClouth and Schaeffer were healthy, I would agree to bench him or send him down, but they have no one else. Conrad is not the answer at second. His defense could really hurt them if he played every day. Keep in mind they are locked into Uggla’s contract for 4 more years so they better hope he is the same player as last year. I would definitely hit him 8th (9th when Hudson pitches) until he shows something. We are all pulling for you Dan to find your swing so please figure it out.

This is my opinion too I guess. good post.

What decline in skills. If you factor OUT what Uggla did against the Atlanta Braves, is numbers really aren’t that different. We were one of the few teams that didn’t know how to pitch him (for some reason)

Rodrigo Lopez has given up 6 ER and 10 hits in 5.2 innings in Chicago. Glad we got something for him.

So if Freddie can’t ask McCann to not block the plate, how can he ask a base runner to not slide head-first? McCann is more important to this team than one run or one game to sacrifice himself.

Ok sorry brandon. Your right. For the record I do hope he turns it round as he is in my fantasy team and he can really help the braves win. I shouldnt become like Bill and just support my own players but be a real fan and support the team. We should critise uggla though, but still root for him to pull it round. This isnt really a slump right now, its an absolutly horrible run he is on. He isnt even making productive outs. But I want him to pull through whether he is one of Bill’s boys or not

Damn Zippy even got critiqued by his man-crush Brandie. Are you guys gonna be, ok?

Damn, Uggla got a break. Will wonders ever cease. Now that the soccer boys have assigned him as one of “Bill’s boys” it must be time for his slump to end.

Paging Mr. Brooks Conrad – Y U NO EVRYDAY PLYR YET?

You are so clever, how could anyone have conjured such a put down? It’s surprising that you are stuck in a community college in South Georgia, with your amazing intellect and wit. I am sure that Brooks will be an everyday player long before you produce that picture of a high school playground soccer field that has memorialized your name. Put up or shut up lil Brandie you’re a fine girl……..

Something tells me that Mark will be writing about Freddie Freeman soon. (I wrote about him in response to Bravo a couple of days ago.)

Another game where we are shut out and make the opposing pitcher (who isnt even that good) look like a genius. It is really not good enough. I dont know what the answer is to be honest. O and before you all love prado, lets remember that his obp is really low, and for a 1 and 2 hole hitter that is a really important stat. He isnt having a good season. We need heyward back and hitting well, need uggla to pick it up.

He’s still having a good season; he’s showing more power than normal and still making big hits – he’s just not setting up other guys with RBI chances like he normally does.

Time for blame Fredi for a loss (sorry FG). Kinda like being back in Miami again. Proctor was a bad choice. JJ should have been given a chance to give up his own runs. He was still pitching well – just a couple of bad breaks. Glad to see Uggs get a hit, albiet menningless. 2 of 3 from the mets ain’t too bad.

If his current stats continue then it makes no sense to bat him at the top of the order. He should be number 3/4/5. We can put shafer 1 and nate 2 when he comes back. Or heyward

I agree the two hole should be occupied by someone who has a high OBP, Prado is perfect there; As Bill stated before, he has the perfect swing and is the perfect type of hitter for it. Prado had a slow start, so the OBP should come back just the way his average has.

This team just isn’t fun to watch. As a loving fan of not only the Braves, but the game of baseball itself, it pains me to say that watching our team play actually angers me more than it gives me joy this season. However, being the loyal fan I am, I will continue to torture myself night in and night out, hoping that our pathetic excuse for an offense will somehow turn it around and actually act like they’ve stood in a batters box before. That being said, I am extremely happy with our record thus far, considering how poorly we’ve played offensively. Sadly, I fear that our results will soon start matching the process that produces them if something isn’t done soon. Here’s to the rest of the season…Go Bravos

What would our season be looking like right now if:

Martin Prado or Omar Infante was playing second base and spelling Chipper at 3rd?

If we still had Dunn’s arm in the bullpen?

Boy that Uggla trade was just great, wasn’t it?

Some career Uggla stats of interest:

Uggla Career vs. Nationals:

AB – 335
BA – .260
HR – 16 (RFK – 3 Nationals Park 7)

Uggla Career vs. Mets:

AB – 359
BA – 228
HR – 15 (Shea – 1 Citi Field 4)

Uggla Career vs. Phillies

AB – 379
BA – .232
HR – 20 (Citizens Bank Park 6)

Uggla Career vs. Marlins

AB – 12
BA – .167
HR – 1 (Turner Field)

Uggla vs. Braves

AB – 355
BA – .287
HR – 23 (Turner Field 15)

If you think about it, the only times Uggla has shown signs of heating up this year, it has been against west coast teams, or American League teams that don’t see him that often. The teams in our division (except the Braves) have known how to pitch him (and still do).

Also of interest here is to note the power numbers by in large come at smaller parks. He did like Turner Field, but again, we didn’t seem to know what the rest of the division knows.

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