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Baseball Prospectus – Team Health Reports: Atlanta Braves

Most of the Braves get green lights. The exceptions, however, include reds for JD Drew and Wright, and yellows for Smoltz, Julio, and Ramirez. (Actually, “the entire pen is running on yellow lights”, but he only lists the closer.)

Like me, Carroll “can’t see [Wright] remaining healthy in a starter’s role.” I suppose if he could stay healthy you might wind up with a quality pitcher — one who once showed ace ability — cheap, but is it worth the risk? Julio’s yellow is age, as I guess (from the other side) is Ramirez’s. The medical problems of the others are, I guess, well known

On the other hand, Carroll comes up with this question about Paul Blair dropping off at age 30 (comparing him to Andruw): “I’m curious, was it an injury?” Either he’s woefully ignorant or that is a very tasteless joke. Blair’s beaning was actually at age 26, but that’s when his decline as a hitter started, his numbers going down as the league offense went up. Blair had a little renaissance at age 29-30, then fell off the cliff, but he was already a damaged player and who can tell how that might resonate?

13 thoughts on “Premium again”

  1. But the good thing about Wright is, with Byrd’s wing almost healed, he won’t have to last long in the fifth slot. Hopefully by mid-late May, Wright’ll be available in the bullpen again. Right?

  2. Three more things:

    1. Mac, any ideas for a new poll?

    2. Go Seton Hall!

    3. Opening Day is now 10 days away.

  3. I don’t particularly care if Wright can stay healthy in a starter role. If he looks up to it for a while, ride it out and see what happens/ He clearly wants to take that chance, he’s cheap, give it a whirl.

    But of course, I think the same thing about Smoltz as a starter…

  4. Tasteless joke? Baseball Prospectus?

    Say it ain’t so!

    The Braves could do worse than Wright as a fifth starter.

    The Braves pitching should be interesting this season. I’m more worried about their hitting, esp. when Drew goes for an extended stay on the DL.

  5. I’m not terribly worried about hitting. They’re well above average in CF, LF and at 2B; above average at SS; likely average at 1B and C. Only at 3B do I see the team below average. RF is a bit of a crapshoot, but it’s not like there’s an absence of good hitters outside that position.

    Pitching is my worry, esp the bullpen. The roation is decent, but the 7th and 8th innings look like a nightmare waiting to happen.

  6. Troy – I see no reason to plan on Byrd being any good when he comes back. even good pitchers struggle in their recovery from such major surgery, and Byrd is rushing back. Remember when Smoltz tried to rush back as a starter from his surgery? Five starts, 16 runs in 25 innings, and he was back on the DL for another month and a half.

    And Paul Byrd isn’t half the pitcher or athlete that John Smoltz is

  7. Personally, I’d put the over/under on the remaining innings of Paul Byrd’s career at about 50. Reports of his impending recovery sound like typical spring training optimism, and I also agree with the comment on his control.

  8. Wow, OK, good points. So it’s totally unknown if Byrd will be any good when he comes back, and until/after then we’ll have a guy as our fifth starter who once started a 7th game of a world series but then imploded many years in a row.

    Then again, last year we had SHANE REYNOLDS.


  9. I think Will’s Paul Blair comment was ignorant, not malicious. It was a long time ago, and the beaning was not as “celebrated” as Tony Conigliaro’s. I myself didn’t read about the beaning until reading the Blair comment in Bill James’s new HBA, then didn’t recall it until Mac’s mention.

  10. What about Sean Fesh the left hander sidearming relief pitcher who was in the Marlins farm system. How is he doing in Braves Camp in 04? Will he be in Richmond or Greenville?

  11. For what’s it worth, Fanhomies watching a ST game on FSS the other day say that Bobby has declared Wright to be the 5th starter.

  12. Looks that way. Sorry, I’ve been busy and sick the last couple of days. Bad combination.

    If the Braves use the 4.5 man rotation that they normally do, Wright might actually be in a good place. Occasional long rest between starts might make up for more innings. That still doesn’t solve the bullpen hole this leaves, though. Smoltz, Cunnane, and?

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