**No Pepper**–Part of the BravesBeat Network: Exposed
Brad’s run down some of the players the Braves left off the 40-man roster. The best might be Buddy Hernandez, the diminutive lefty who was lost to the A’s in the last Rule 5 draft (actually, I think to another team which traded him to Oakland) but didn’t quite make their roster and wound up back at Richmond. As bad as the major league pen got, the Braves never did give him a shot, and now he’s likely gone again. Another reliever, who was superb last year, Ray Aguilar, might join him. The best-known hitter of the bunch is probably Carlos Duran; I was never high on him but the Braves saw his speed and .270 BA in 2002 and started thinking he was a prospect. (I remember asking Merv why in the world he was considered a better prospect than Gregor Blanco, who was a year younger and a better hitter. I win.) As an outfielder who hits like the Bad Rafael Furcal, Duran never had much of a chance, and the Braves soured on him.
A number of other failed prospects were left off; Cory Aldridge, Jean “The Catching South American Glenn Williams” Boscan, and the pitching Matts Butler and McClendon.
I had no idea Matt Butler was still in the organization. I saw him pitch in high school. Man, was he a stud!
Did he have arm trouble, or did he just wash out? Anybody know?
I think Butler was erratic(to put it charitably–the actual numbers are terrible)at Myrtle Beach; clearly he is attempting a valiant comeback. Something of the same might be said for the even older McClendon.
What I fail to understand is why younger version of Tony Pena Jr. was worth protecting. To a lesser extent, the same holds true of Onil Joseph. What was the danger that he would be drafted? I guess the good news is that this gets us ready for next year when the Braves decide to protect Jon Schuerholz.
Aguilar should be a find for somebody and next summer the Braves can again pay too much for relief help.
I think Butler had an elbow problem, but check out his bio on Bravesbeat to be sure. I know McClendon had injuries that derailed him on the verge of making it. Neither should be drafted in the major league round, so if they’re pulled back before the AAA draft they should stay in the organization. Maybe they’ll make it as relievers.
Nobody understands the Tony Pena thing. It may be that they thought someone would draft him for the name recognition. We’re starting to build a lineup here of hacks with famous fathers.
2B Aaron Herr
3B Jon Schuerholz
SS Tony Pena
OF Gary Mathews
Actually, Herr’s almost a prospect.
Mac, Don’t forget 1B Adam LaRoche. I’m pretty sure Dave LaRoche’s the proud papa.
He is, but Adam’s not a hack. (He’s currently tearing up Venezuela, I believe.) If we got Mike Glavine back, would he count?