Uggla reacts to being removed from a starting role

One day later, it was easier to understand why Dan Uggla was so upset on Sunday.  It was not simply because he was not given a chance to halt his career-long struggles against Cole Hamels.  It had much more to do with the fact that Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez had just informed him that he was not sure how much he would play over the remainder of the season.

Uggla vented his frustrations toward Gonzalez on Sunday and then spoke to MLB.com about the matter.  When he was not in the lineup again for Monday afternoon’s game against the Rockies, he provided some more information about the meeting.

“He didn’t really explain anything to me,” Uggla said.  “He just said we need to make a change and I do not know how much playing time you are going to get (the rest of the season).”

Uggla voiced his displeasure in a vociferous manner while meeting with Gonzalez on Sunday afternoon.

“I think he took it the right way,” Gonzalez said. “Obviously it’s uncomfortable and it’s hard, especially with the relationship I have with him.   You want  your players to be upset if they are not in there.  But knowing him going through September, he’s either going to have a big at-bat when he pinch hits.  Or we’re going to put him in a game and he’s going to have a big game that gets us to the postseason.”

Gonzalez has shown patience with Uggla, who has batted .152 with a .276 slugging percentage in his past 73 games.  But it appears he plans to utilize Martin Prado as his regular second baseman for the remainder of the season.  Jose Constanza could play left field against right-handed starters.  Reed Johnson, who had three hits in Sunday’s win over the Phillies, could play left field when the opposing team is starting a left-handed pitcher.

“It’s not a doghouse situation,” Gonzalez said. “It’s a situation where you feel you have to do something for the team. It’s hard because of the relationship.”

When the Braves had a chance to acquire Uggla in November 2010, it was Gonzalez who gave a ringing endorsement.  He had served as the veteran second baseman’s manager with the Marlins from 2007-2010.  This relationship likely led him to be more patient with Uggla than he would have been with other players in a similar situation.

Gonzalez admitted it was also tough to pull Uggla back from the on-deck circle after planning to pinch-hit him before the Phillies brought in right-handed closer Jonathan Papelbon on Friday night.   This led the Braves to counter with left-handed hitter Lyle Overbay, who has had some success against Papelbon.

“I understand what my numbers are,” Uggla said. “I’m not blind to any of that, but at the same time, I’m part of the team that got us to where we are now.   Numbers do not mean anything to me in September. Some people don’t see it that way. Do I agree with it? No. But it’s  not my call. All I can do is pull for my teammates and do what I can when I get an opportunity.”

McCann and Chipper rest:  Brian McCann was out of the lineup again on Monday as he continued to gain the necessary rest after getting a second cortisone shot in his right shoulder on Saturday night.  McCann, who could return to action on Tuesday, also received an injection on Aug. 7…Chipper Jones also rested his 40-year-old legs on Monday afternoon.  This was the plan before he hit a walk-off three-run homer in Sunday’s five-run ninth inning against the Phillies.

13 Comments

I thought Uggla should have been benched way before this,hje came to the plate too many times with men on base and just strike out. Now if that hurt his feelings he needs to take a look at his average and compare it to any body

Hmm, how much explanation does Uggla need to understand why he’s being benched in favor of a far superior player? For the past half-season he’s been hitting so far south of Mendoza that he’s going to need a stamped passport to get back in the lineup. “Numbers do not mean anything to me in September.” That’s the problem, Dan. Numbers show just how much or how little you have been contributing over any given period of time. You may be a great guy and teammate, but major-league clubs don’t pay players for that–just ask Reggie Jackson, another human strikeout machine, but one who was able to focus and deliver when it counted.

Uggla had to have seen this comming. He is a strike out king and has been for most of his career. Before his hit streak last year he was only batting bout .220

good glad to see Fredi come to his senses and bench the bum. I hope this off season the Braves find someone willing to take him, I say ship him off to Houston they could use him as a DH.

All I can say is it’s about time. Dan, the team would be in a much better position currently than they are if this would have been done earlier. You need to earn your paycheck for being the highest paid 2nd baseman in the league.

He’s certainly not a bum, he’s very capable of producing 30+HR 90+RBI, and always gives 110%, but he’s obviously struggling this season. So amen to setting him down and letting someone, who at the moment is producing at a much higher level, have a chance to help the team.

Uggla has been going bad but that’s not all of the story. He has looked really bad doing it. Janish has not been tearing up the league either but at least he’s making a lot more contact and not swinging at pitches a foot short of the plate or a foot outside. With Dan you just get the idea that he’s beating himself before the pitchers do.. I think all of Braves Nation want to see Dan be successful but we are much more than just disappointed. We are seeing the pain he is in by not performing as he is capable. And it makes feel terrible for him. It is so painful to watch him flail away and also to watch his understandable frustration. Very painful to watch.

It is extremely frustrating to watch a team perform so badly down the stretch. “IF” they do make the playoff’s it’s hard to imagine the Braves getting past the first round. I’m hoping for some off season moves.

The only offseason move i want to see done is Uggla traded, I think the only couple teams that may benefit from his bat. I say Houston Seattle and Arizona could benefit from him.

Hey all: Medlen is up for the “Mane Man of the Month” for AUGUST on MLB.com. Voting is going and he is lagging behind. Lets get some Braves Support for MEDS. Everyone go and vote on MLB.com.

Maybe if he would learn there is something to hit at on the right side of the diamond, he might actually get to play again. Watching his front shoulder open up time after time while he is flailing at outside pitches should be embarrassing to him. He, like Jason Heyward, needs to watch tape, and start driving the ball to the opposite field. ABC baseball.

Thank the powers that be.Uggla was a Braves killer at Florida now he is a Braves killer at Atlanta.Too bad we have this guy on contract 3more years.Freddi got hurt being faithful to this bum!

How about a McCann, Hanson, Jurrjens, and Uggla trade? I’m sure we could get a solid SP and a boat load of minor leaguer’s.

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