ajc.com | Braves | Sobriety suits Fick
Robert Fick says he gave up drinking six weeks ago. If he was really drinking too much, then good for him. But any time a player changes his habits, even bad habits, it seems like it effects his play for the worse. Remember when Chipper stopped chewing tobacco?
Bobby is already platooning Fick, it appears, giving Juliold Franco the start against a lefty Saturday. Fick was disappointed because the Braves were playing his old Tiger team. Moreover, Fick doesn’t have to be platooned; he really doesn’t have a split worth mentioning.
Paul Byrd has a sore elbow to go with his sore groin. This signing just looks worse and worse and the season hasn’t even started yet. Long-term, this could be good for the team, if it means that the fifth starter gets more regular work.
To be fair, even if Fick doesn’t have a platoon split, Julio does, and he beats lefties about the face and neck. Pretty severely too. Even if Fick hits lefties as well as he hits righties, if Julio’s numbers against lefties are better than Fick’s in that category, it’s not hard to justify playing Julio.
As long as Bobby doesn’t do what he did last year and play Julio for a week after he had a three-hit game against a league-average lefty, I’ve got no problem with a first-base platoon either.