Julio to the Mets?

Ugh. I guess he’ll back up Delgado and pinch-hit, maybe get some starts against the tough lefties. He did seem off after his birthday, maybe he’s finally run out of gas. But a bad, bad day.

125 thoughts on “Julio to the Mets?”

  1. Maybe loosing Julio will have an unexpected benefit in that Cox and JS will take our first base deficiency more seriously. I always got the sense that they thought, “hell, Adam L. may suck, but Julio will help cover up the problem.” While he did to some extent, it wasn’t enough to make up for not having good production at first base. Getting 1B fixed is even more important now in that we’re not going to be getting bonus offense from SS like we did for the second half last year.

  2. Probably already posted on the earlier thread. But Renteria had $26 Mil left for three years. Plus an option year or a buyout.

    Boston will pay $8 mil and the inevitable buyout since the Braves aren’t going to pay $11 mil for renteria to play four seasons from now. So Renteria’s effective salary to the Braves is $6 mil/year, a whole lot better than Furcal’s $13 mil and change for a bit more offence and a bit less defense.

    The Marte part is the hard part to swallow. I wish him well, but Chipper is re-signed at third for 3 years.

  3. Actually, string of conciousness here. Without Julio, the Braves really should move Chipper to first and ship LaRoche somewhere else.

    Ugh, of course that leaves a hole at third now that Marte is gone – unless the Braves plan to play Bettemit at third.

  4. Jurries last year
    363 AB’s 21 HR’s .277

    389 AB’s 20 HR’s .275

    I guess we should be building this guy up as a HOF’er as well.

  5. Has Julio signed with the Mets? Will we be in the same boat next offseason trying to resign Giles? Or does he still have one more year of arbitration?

  6. I would rather see Betemit at 3rd over Marte. Wouldn’t it be funny if Chipper wanted to move now!

  7. I am in mourning that Julio has not only left the Braves, but he’s playing for the Mets.

    This is all kinds of wrongs and I’m going to retire from being a baseball fan for a few weeks. See if that makes me feel better…

  8. But those numbers don’t tell the whole story, csg. I don’t want to come off as a total stathead, but it’s OBP and SLG that count, not batting average. You can have a high batting average and do absolutely nothing. That’s how the Natspos got fooled by Soriano. And at-bats? How about plate appearances, when you’re not ignoring walks and HBP? Those numbers really don’t mean much at all.

  9. Well this was obviously a terrible deal for the Braves because Franco is a definite HOF’er. We got fleeced. Damn Schuerholz. I think I’ll go jump off a building.

  10. Jenny, thanks I know it doesnt tell the whole story but it is very important. I’m just not having a great day either and I want to be hard to deal with.

    Michael, dont jump off of a building!

  11. How about KJ, Thomson, Renteria to the O’s for Tejada? HoRam and Lerew to the Rangers for Mench? Sign Millwood?

    A boy can dream.

  12. Jurries did have an excellent season last year. But, he’s also five years older than Marte, so he projects a little differently. I think he will make a good platoon partner for Adam, and will probably get some time in the outfield. That is, if the Braves hold onto him.

  13. Wow. A 47-year old pinch hitter has moved over to the Mets, and THIS makes us upset?! Not the trading of our top prospect for a declining shortstop?! No, csg, it wouldn’t be fun. It’d be outrageous.

  14. I don’t know if there is anything to the Nomar rumors, but it does seem like after the inevitable trade of Kelly Johnson, the Braves will have glaring needs for platoon partners at both first and third base. We could get Mia Hamm Jane Fonda’s old sequined Braves hat.

  15. Lajoie said he expected to see Marte play for the Red Sox this year, putting him in the outfield or first base if it’s necessary to get his bat in the lineup.

    “We want to keep that player. … He’s ready to have a good year,” said Lajoie, one of four Boston executives at the winter meetings in the absence of a general manager. “He would be one of the five players you would want to start a ballclub with.”

    I think this comment speaks for itself.

  16. Actually Jurries out OPSed by Marte by 0.005.

    But mac’s right. Jurries doesn’t compare in any realistic way to Marte. He may be part of our 1B platoon though.

  17. Can we keep the depressing Marte/Renteria stuff on the previous thread? I’m trying to forget about it and mourn Julio right now…

  18. Man. I loved Julio. It’ll make me sick to see him play for the Mets. Best of Luck to him though.

  19. Julio was somewhat of a novelty. After the Marte debacle, I honestly don’t give two sh*ts about this deal. Rochy are you reading this? It’s time for you to poop or get off the pot. 1st base has been handed to you, rightly so or not, time to take advantage

  20. It’ll be interesting to see how he handles LHP, if indeed this is our 1B situation for next year.

  21. For those who are curious, our new “3B of the future” is now Eric Campbell. John on the other thread says he saw him in Danville last season – he played excellently there, and was probably the top prospect in the entire Appy League.

    His numbers are here. Very impressive average and ISO, decent walk rate, decent K/BB rate, not great but not awful strikeout rate.

    Marte was in the Carolina league at that age, so Campbell is roughly 2 years behind Marte’s development path. If everything goes well, he should be ready by mid-2008.

  22. My guess is Campbell in Rome and Pope in MB to start the season. If both do well, I imagine there’ll be mid-season promotions.

  23. Thanks for the link Kyle. I’d heard Campbell’s name before but didn’t know anything about him. Given Chipper’s time line (barring serious injury)at 3b, he could work out nicely if he continues to progress.

  24. Good news on Pope and Campbell – then when those guys are primed to break out, we can trade them straight up for a mid-level SS on the decline.

  25. I know, the horse is in the Alpo can but I can’t help myself.
    A couple of observations:
    1. Andy Marte has to be the most overhyped Braves prospect since Brad Komminsk. Do I think he’ll be good. Yes I do, but still for a guy thats put up his minor league numbers the hype machine has been in overdrive. He’s been good but hardly dominant in the minors.
    2. Defense up the middle. The Braves just couldn’t see going with Wilson Betemit at the crucial defensive position. We tend to concentrate on the hitting but the Braves wanted a glove at short that wouldn’t be a second pitcher hitting in the lineup. Renteria will provide that. If you look at it like we are getting a Furcal equivalent for less than half the money the trade starts to look better.
    3. All the proposed trades that were posted for Lugo and Renteria were laughable. The Drays and the Sox were in the power position in this deal. They ain’t going to take LaRoche, HoRam and a host of other players we know aren’t any good for a quality major league SS. The Braves have always traded potential for proven performance, more often than not successfully.
    4. Faith. The Braves are going to have a second year catcher, a 3rd year 1b, a second year RF and probably a second year LF starting next season. Throw in the uncertainty about the pitching staff and it would have taken ALOT of faith to throw a second year SS in there too.
    5. Finally, As much as I understand why Schuerholz traded Andy Marte, I hate the deal. There are probably some things we don’t know, like Marte simply being incapable of adapting to another position but I’m a stats leaning guy and fully bought into the hype that the least he is going to be was a championship caliber player. In Boston with its bias towards right handed power Marte is going to be a star.

  26. My guess is Campbell in Rome and Pope in MB to start the season. If both do well, I imagine there’ll be mid-season promotions.

    That sounds about right. If Campbell goes gangbusters, he goes to the Beach midseason. Either way, he ends ’07 in AA, hopefully almost ready for the bigs.

  27. Johnny, we are in the same section of the choir.

    I liked Marte, but Bobby wanted an established SS. That’s who he is and it’s good enough for me.

  28. Johnny it doesn’t matter how you justify it, according to most on this site, the Braves are headed for ten straight years of cellar ball, because they traded a prospect. Unfreakinbelievable.

  29. For the love — people calm down.

    Let us think this through. We have the foundation of the franchise, the guy who sucked it up and played leftfield to sate JS’s Vinnie fettish, a guy who has restructured his contract to give us room to improve, a guy who for his career has an OBP over .400 and SLG% of .538, and the team’s leader.

    Now some of us seem to think we should just ignore the above player’s wishes and move him to first base. I think not.

    In the outfield we have Andruw. He’s not going anywhere. We have KJ, Langerhans, and Jeff at the corners. All of whom JS and Cox seem to be high on.

    We have a prospect at the pinnacle of his value who isn’t going to displace Chipper and who, like Chipper, couldn’t make a successful transition to the OF.

    We have a 6-3 210 pound second year IF who backed up third and SS last year and who doesn’t have good zone ratings or range factors or fielding percentages at SS during his Major League tenure. He looks like he may hit the ball pretty well — Career OBP .339 SLG .389 — but add this caveat, he hasn’t played SS regularly since 2001.

    We also have two stud shortstop prospects that look to be 2 or three years away from the majors.

    We just lost our all-star 28 year old Shortstop who signed with the Dodgers for 13 million per year over the next 3 years. His career numbers are .348/.409. And while he’s been an inconsistent fielder over the course of his career, last year he looked like he had turned the corner and become one of the top defenders at his position.

    So what does JS do? He moves the BLOCKED top prospect for a 30 year old shortstop with career numbers of .345/.400 who had a bad defensive year last season but has been one of the better defenders at his position over his career. And they are going to pay this guy 5-6 million per year after the shortstop they lost set the market at 13 million per year.

    I hate giving up Marte as much as anyone. But I don’t have a problem with this trade. I think it is a very fair one. The Red Sox are gambling on Marte developing as projected and assume the risk of injury and failure in addition to the upside. The braves get a Shortstop who will hopefully produce more or less what the got out of Furcal for the next 3 years but do it for 5 million dollars.

    I am trying to figure out where this leaves us payroll wise but, I think we have room to make another move.

    I think our season will depend largely on the ability of McCann, Langerhans, Johnson, Jeff, and LaRoche to take steps forward.

  30. I say we sign Reggie Sanders and make him play LF then we can trade Ryan Langerhans of HoRam for Danys Baez.

  31. In the words of Lassie:
    Arf arf! Bark bark woof! Woof woof baby’s in danger! Arf arf arf!

  32. LaRoche is fine he hit the third most bombs on the team and had some clutch hits. Remember who hit that slam against the stros in game 4. also had a big double in game 2 against clemens. also is a great fielder. only thing is his base running against the stros in game 4 did hurt us.

  33. Exactly drew. He is by far a better starting calibre player than langerhans/johnson…if we could package johnson/one of our surplus starters(thomson, sosa, ramirez, james, lerew) for either a leadoff type left fielder or Mr. Sluggo our lineup would be excellent.

    We could trade betemit, or more likely keep him as backup to chipper/renteria becasue he is so cheap. orr backs up 2b, langerhans of, pratt C, and a pinch-hit speicalist for first (conine maybe can also play leftfield too)

    Really, if we add a couple key bench players, and address the cecil fielder sized hole in left field our lineup would be the best(balance wise at least) that we have had in some time.

  34. Oh, and here are a few reasons the sky isn’t falling in:

    The Braves play in the N.L. East. Two of their division rivals are the Nationals and Marlins, who have about 3 major league players between them right now.

    The other two teams are the losingest franchise in the history of American professional sports, the Philadelphia Phillies, and the perennial laughingstock of the league, the New York Mets. (And I say this as a Mets fan.)

    The Phillies just lost Jim Thome and Billy Wagner, and they’re trying like hell to lose Bobby Abreu. Their G.M. is clearly trying to do some addition by subtraction, but he’s not necessarily worried about contending this year.

    The Mets are… well, they’re the Mets. They have no farm system, and some pretty public problems with their shiny new slugger, who has never played in a remotely high-pressure market. The first day that Delgado goes 0 for 5, they will make him remember it. They’ll have their best lineup on paper since the start of the decade, but that lineup includes Kaz Matsui and Jose Reyes, as well as the always-injured Cliff Floyd, the unhappy Carlos Beltran, and the unproven Victor Diaz, who tailed off a lot last year after a nice start.

    (Oh, and they have Anna Benson.)

    The Braves haven’t lost any games yet, and we can beat these guys. So although we may have lost out on seeing Andy Marte wear an Atlanta Braves cap to the Hall of Fame, we haven’t lost the 2006 season yet.

  35. I have always been perplexed by the Braves reluctance to sign a big bat at first base the past five or six years. Ever since Big Cat left, we haven’t really gotten a ton of production from that spot. Can anyone think of the last team to win a World Series with a sub-par player at 1B? The only one I can think of is Spiezio with the Angels, but I think that’s an aberration. Personally, I’m sick of just plugging holes at that position.

  36. lineup like…

    giles 2b
    renteria ss
    jones 3b
    jones cf
    sluggo lf
    laroche 1b
    francouer rf
    mccann c


    leadoff lf
    giles or renteria
    jones 3b
    jones cf
    laroche 1b
    giles or renteria
    francouer rf
    mccann c

    i like the top one better but i would take either..

  37. or Boston in ’04, or Arizona in ’01, you’ve already mentioned the Angels, how bout San Fran in ’02?

  38. I think its harder to quantify when you’re talking about American League teams, because of the DH. But I would say Mark Grace was at least average that year in Arizona. San Fran was J.T. Snow, I think. I seem to remember him having a better than average year that season. But, they didn’t win the series.

  39. yes he was good that year, and the two previous years. I was asking because I couldn’t remember, but I looked up his stats, and he had been on a steady incline leading up to this years huge season.

  40. I honestly beleive Laroche will surprise when he gets everyday playing time. His stats against lefties dont give a large enough sample size, and if he were to bat sixth as in my top example lineup i could see .290 25+ 90+ opb .350+. with consistent playing time being the key to this. He, like renteria has shown a penchant for coming up with big time hits as well, which we desperately need especially come playoff time, despite the dp’s that they are well known for.

  41. Hey guys, random, but any of you have any self proclaimed projections and/or official projections of what Jeff Francoeur’s next season will be like…?

    I am trying to get an idea of what our team will be like, and he is the one i can’t figure out..

  42. Yeah. I’m actually not as down on LaRoche as most of the crowd seems to be. The kid’s got power, and apperantly he plays good defense at 1B (less important now that Furcal isn’t slinging the ball all over the place), and his only liability seems to be his Molina-esk speed on the base paths.

    But he’s got power.

  43. I think Francouer next year will be something like .265/.320/.450 over about 400 plate appearances, maybe around 15 homers.

    What does everyone else think?

  44. Mraver, I’d say that his other liability is that he goes through cold spells–sometimes for months at a time–where he absolutely is incapable of hitting anything.

  45. LaRoche is OK, but he’s the one that should be easiest to upgrade to gain more offense. But I don’t know who is available to replace him.

  46. I just checked out the Mets board and there is a lot of split action, but most of it is…

    “Renteria had a down year, but the Braves must have seen something, this can’t be good for us. What are we going to do? ”

    Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha

  47. I see Francoeur with more than 15 homers. He may by streaky but when he is hot he will hit lots of homers. He has too much talent to only hig 15. I think the average and OBP are good estimates.

  48. I’ll go on record as saying this has been a fantastic offseason so far.

    The Braves have gotten rid of Dan Klobb, Johnny Fu ManEstrada, Julio batslinger Franco, thirdbase patrons should be safer, and Brian Jordan. The Furcal departure hurts, but Renteria has been brought aboard at a cheaper rate, and all we gave up is Andy Marte.

    That has to be considered a successful start to the offseason.

  49. Check out the post from Chipper’s agent on the previous thread, if y’all haven’t seen it. Very good, informative stuff.

  50. He took the steroid and the 5-year position freeze accusations really seriously (as he should, I guess). I hope he’s not mad at me, I was just posting what I heard from Peter Gammons on the 5-year thing and tried to tell him as much. “Actionable?” Yikes.

  51. Am I the only one who wants to see KJ get the LF job next year. I really like his approach and believe he can be a quality left fielder.

  52. Yes it does. He’s scared of walls, as would be expected of a converted shortstop not used to dealing with them all that often. So he backs off and doesn’t make plays on balls that end up as doubles.

    I wish we could take Johnson’s hitting approach and tack it onto Langerhans’ outfield defense. Since we can’t, it’d be better to trade one, keep the other as a fourth outfielder, and acquire a more consistent bat to play left. Andruw’s lost half a step, but with Francoeur in right he can shade left to cover a bit for an inferior defender.

  53. He hasnt been playing the outfield that long. He will improve. He is a below average outfielder right now, but I dont see any reason why he cant make himself adequate.

  54. It was ambiguous, I thought you were referring to lack of power.

    My bad. Long week, dont take it personal.

  55. KJ was the “best” LF per 162 games according to ZR and Gassko “range”!

    Yeah, I don’t think he’s good either. maybe he will hit like he did in AAA.

  56. If I’m running the show, I stick w/what I’ve got in LF (KJ and RL platoon). It’s cost effective and it’ll play itself out naturally.
    That said, I think that Langy wins out – defense always does w/Bobby.

  57. Hey Jenny – do you read Baseball Primer (well I guess it’s called Baseball Think Factory now, but no one I know calls it that)? I know a lot of the other jokers around here (Godot, me, byrd, Mac, spike, LatNam, JC, various others) post on there fairly frequently. That goes for any other frequent poster here too.

    http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org. Long, somewhat vitriolic threads there. Lots of fans from every team, nearly all of whom like the Marte half of the trade better. A good way to waste your afternoon.

  58. Their server appears to be crashing because of heavy traffic. Maybe I should check it out after the winter meetings are done. Thanks for the tip, though!

  59. (Godot, me, byrd, Mac, spike, LatNam, JC, various others)

    Funny that you used my non-journal name.

    And don’t forget about oi.

    A good way to waste your afternoon. whole life

    There, fixed that for you.

  60. Okay, so how will the new BBA prospect list look now that Marte’s gone? I asume everyone will simply move up, so who slides into the number 10 spot? I say Will Startup….

    1. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, c
    2. Elvis Andrus, ss
    3. Yunel Escobar, ss
    4. Anthony Lerew, rhp
    5. Joey Devine, rhp
    6. Chuck James, lhp
    7. Brandon Jones, of
    8. Eric Campbell, 3b
    9. Beau Jones, lhp
    10. Will Startup, lhp

  61. ah yes, leeds. forgot him.

    most people use the same nick here as there. anyway, your nick here is just shorthand. you’re styll the byrd.

  62. That’s still a pretty damn good list, even better if you consider that Boyer, McCann, and Francoeur all should be on it. I don’t think I’d put startup there; maybe Matt Harrison?

  63. Whomever we decide isn’t going to succeed Renteria. That’s actually one of the ways Renteria fit well for us. His contract will end around the same time one (or both) of those two will be ready. I wouldn’t expect to see them traded in the near future.

  64. Elvis has a chance to be a freakin’ stud. His plate discipline is already pretty good and this was his AGE 16 season. He doesn’t hit for any power yet, but I’m a patient guy most of the time.

    By the way, as bad as this day has been (at least for some of us), at least we didn’t sign Kenny “The Gambler” Rogers to a $16 million dollar contract. What a joke.

  65. The Julio thing just makes the Marte trade even stranger. I still can’t believe we didn’t at least TRY Marte at first. With Julio gone, he could have even just platooned for a while until Bobby realized, finally, how bad LaRoche is. Marte and Betemit would be absurdly better than Renteria and LaRoche next season (mostly because of LaRoche — the gap between him and Marte overwhelms the relatively minor dropoff going from Renteria to Betemit).

    Good thing Pierre’s to the Cubs, otherwise Salty would be out of here. Salty will be “blocked” by McCann in a couple of years, and JS loves those overhyped veterans who fill a need (leadoff).

  66. I could see the Salty Dogg moving to third.

    We should have asked B.B. about McCann – I think he and Chipper share an agent.

  67. Considering that Braves Journal has now hit the big time, I have a few questions that I’d love B.B. Abbott to answer (or Chipper Jones, or anyone else who’s Braves-affiliated and needs to kill some time by talking to me on a message board):

    1) What are the Braves going to do about closer? Are they willing to consider an internal solution–Blaine Boyer, perhaps?
    2) When will they sign Marcus Giles to a long-term extension?
    3) Will they let Marcus hit leadoff for us?
    4) Who’s the cat that won’t cop out when there’s danger all about? (Sorry.)
    5) Will Chuck James and Anthony Lerew start the year in Atlanta?

  68. By the way, now that we’ve done a projection on Francouer, I want to ask everyone’s opinion of McCann: what will his line be next year?

    I say it’ll be a lot like Estrada’s 2004, though slightly lower average, somewhere around .280/.360/.440, about 10 homers and 80 rbis. Anyone else have any thoughts?

  69. I don’t know that he’d know those things.

    Good article about him, though short.

    I’d say Lerew will almost certainly start the year in Atlanta, probably coming out of the pen. Don’t know about James.

  70. McCann: .270/.340/.410

    Frankly, that would be an excellent line for a 22 year old catcher, and I think it’s pretty conservative. I imagine Brian hitting about 15 homers next year and up to perhaps 25 or so at his peak. I think he will hit for higher average as he gets older, also; his K/AB and K/BB ratios haven’t eroded as he moves up levels, which is a great sign.

  71. I’ve been too busy for any long writing lately, but I’ll say in brief what I’ve been meaning to say about McCann… He’s the most important player in the organization, him and Salty. The Braves’ advantage over the last few years has been premium offense at positions teams don’t normally get that from, from the middle infield and center. With Furcal gone (I think Renteria will be okay offensively but not quite what Furcal gave them in his best year), Andruw likely to start aging soon, and Marcus’ injury problems, I don’t know that they can rely upon that anymore. But McCann gives them the chance of having the best-hitting catcher in the league, maybe as soon as next year. (He was better in his limited time than any full-time NL catcher last year.) Guys like that are hard to find.

  72. When I heard the news about Julio on the raido, i shouted in disgust at the top of my lungs.

    Can we call this black thursday?

  73. Wow. So tempted to ask about Chuck James’ experience at the 2004 Sally League All Star game… I guess I have better manners than that.

  74. First, great day for the site, Mac, even if it’s not considered a great day for the reasons the traffic was so high (and even got a potential agent posting.)

    Second, I posited this question in the last thread and wondered what you or others thought about it – what of the idea of offering Frank Thomas a one year/$1 million contract loaded with incentives to play first base. It might take a bit more to sign him, but he is definitely not the hot commodity he used to be and a one year stint could do him and the club wonders if it works.

    Granted, if it does not, I’m not sure who would step in to take up the slack, but we found a way last year after the horrible signings of Jordan and Mondesi. But if it did work, we could package LaRoche in a trade with one of our young outfielders, which we certainly have more of than we need, and potentially bring in either a decent closer that is tested (though who I don’t know who at present – someone suggested Cordero – not a bad idea) or even a stud left fielder, using the other young guy as the fourth (and that’s considering that Franky starts the year in the majors – I’ve heard some talk that he might go back to AAA for a while.)

    Further, if Thomas did work out it would certainly give us some added offense. He is not the defensive first baseman that he used to be, but he’s still servicable there.

    And a word on Jordan’s arbitration – Stan Kasten said today that even if he accepted and won arbitration, that it is not guaranteed. If he does not work out, we can release him. So don’t get too upset about that. If anything, it keeps the chance for another draft pick.

  75. I’m nearly certain that Thomas can’t play the field anymore, so he’d be a glorified pinch-hitter, much like Bagwell was for the Astros near the end of last year. Besides, according to Gammons the A’s have all but signed him anyway…

  76. Yeah, sadly, I don’t think Thomas can play first. He hasn’t fulltime since *gulp* 1996. It’s a shame, because he can still hit.

  77. Yeah, the rule on arbitration is that you have to pay them the first six weeks’ salary, I think. It would be a lot of money to you or me, but to a major league team — or even the Pirates — it’s chump change.

  78. I guess I should have commented on the Franco thing too while in this thread. Here’s what I wrote on my blog today (link here: http://hearthehurd.typepad.com/hear_the_hurd/2005/12/more_hot_stove_.html)

    “As much as I hate the idea of this, it’s probably true. I feel a little irritated that Julio would go after the money at this point considering he wouldn’t even be playing still if it weren’t for the Braves. But I can understand wanting the comfort of a two year deal. I just hope he can perform. If he does not, and the Mets crash and burn which I’m beginning to get the feeling they will (as they always do when they load up with high-priced/big name players) then he could be out on the street again in one year anyway after getting bought out. And then maybe he can sign a nice healthy one year contract with the Braves again. Hmm…maybe this isn’t such a bad deal.”

    As for Thomas, I suppose the defense angle is true. I still think he might be able to get it back (and surely is not as bad off as Bagwell.) But it is certainly true that he does not have the skills in the field that he used to, which were never super-strong. Plus, I’ve also heard the A’s are working hard on him, so that may break it as Tanto suggested. Though I’m curious what deal they are offering him.

  79. Wow. I think Marte and James would have gotten Tejada, maybe some money too. I don’t think Cheap Renteria plus James will though. Shucks.

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