Really?

Left field, first base keys to Braves roster decisions

I thought it was third base and center field.

Bobby thinks that LaRoche can thrive as an everyday player; I’m not convinced, but Bobby generally knows what he’s doing. He will watch James Jurries closely, and mentioned that he can play first base and left field.

Quotes:

“Langerhans actually played really well last year,” Cox said. “I love them both. We don’t give anything away. There’s always competition, which is good.

“Kelly has got a chance to be great, with power, and he can run. And he walks. We’ve always had him pegged throughout his career as a No. 3 hitter in a major league lineup. These things will work out and we’ll see what happens.”

Jordan “may be a longshot to make the team”. I sure hope so.

38 thoughts on “Really?”

  1. Considering I like Langerhans playing LF more than KJ, I wish they would try KJ out at first base. I am quite sure the Braves will get better production from KJ than Adam.

  2. “Jordan won’t be the only non-roster veteran in camp. Catcher Eddie Perez, 38, appears bound for a coaching role in the organization, but he wants to have one more chance to make the roster as a player.”

    But of course he wont be getting a chance to make it at all. He’ll be in camp because every team needs spare catchers for ST, which is why A-ball backups always get to camp with the big club bc you need some one to just catch the ball and throw it back to the pitcher since there are so many in camp.

    Parents, PLEASE make your kids catchers when they grow up. Even LHP dont have this kind of demand.

  3. NMS, I have read from somewhere that Perez is being given a chance to prove his health. If he is indeed healthy, the Braves will 1) seek trade with another club which need a backup catcher or 2) play within the Braves minor league system to stay in game form. It has been made clear that Todd Platt is the backup catcher. So, I am not concerned about Eddie making the club at all.

    On the other hand, Jordan is a completely different story…the Braves are indeed believing a healthy Jordan can make positive contribution to the club. However, the assumption that Jordan will remain healthy is a very shaky. I think the most likely outcome will be Jordan making the club at the league minimum, then hurting himself in the first week of the season and reamins on the DL for the whole year, and finally retiring in the next offseason.

  4. I dont see Langerhans as anything more than a quality 4th outfielder who can play all 3 spots. KJ has the ability to be an MLB regular and I wouldnt mind seeing him leadoff.

  5. I agree with that statement, and would add that it seems that Booby and the rest of the organization would rather see KJ succeed in ST, and deal Langerhans somewhere. My greatest fear is that this scenario happens, and it allows Booby to keep Jordan.

  6. Jordan will end up with a mysterious injury again this year. While taking up a spot on the 40-man, he’ll be like an extra coach on the bench.

  7. You have a point, Maybe LaRoache isn’t that great against lefties, but he’s only been in the bigs 2 years, he is still young, still learning…he’s still a guy that can put up big numbers.. 35 homers 100 R.B.I.’s if he plays full time.maybe he dont learn as fast as…say a francoeur.. come on now we all know he is a little slow anyway..but he can put up those big numbers…and hes only makin what $336,000? big numbers for a low salary.i think we are in for a big year if we get the bullpen set…..And where the heck is Gryboski? texas let him go or what?

  8. TheSandman, I don’t agree with you that LaRoche can put up big numbers. I don’t think LaRoche is anywhere near that good. He’s 26 years old, he’s spent two full years as the Braves’ starting first baseman, and I’ve seen a lot of bad habits without many flashes of greatness.

    If he becomes a 30/100 guy, a second McGriff, then he’ll have to come out of nowhere to do it.

  9. LaRoche has never been “the” starting first baseman. He’s spent the last two years in a platoon situation. I’m all for giving him first base full time. He is 26, so it’s now or never time in my opinion. I think he’ll put up big numbers this year, but if he doesn’t, then we’ve got Scott Thorman waiting in the wings.

    All of this assumes Bobby doesn’t platoon Laroche again this year , this time with Jurries, which I actually think might happen mid season if Laroche isn’t producing by then.

  10. The problem is that he is maxing out his skill in a platoon by only facing righties. If he has to face lefties too, his per-PA power, RBI, and TOB numbers will all drop. For his career, he’s a .206/.299/.338 in limited time against LHP. So realistically if he gets 150 more AB against LHP, he only hits 3 or 4 more homers.

  11. 35 homers for LaRoche? That’s a 75% increase from 2005. I don’t think Adam is a bad player, but that is a bit much to expect from him. I’d say 25 is a fairly optimistic projection.

  12. If he hits 35, he will miss the playoffs and the first half of next season because he will have violated the new roid rule

  13. LaRoche is in a platoon, but he gets the vast majority of the at-bats at first base. Bobby platoons his catchers, too–but I’m willing to call the guy who gets 4/5ths of the at-bats the “starting” catcher.

    Anyway, sorry. I’m arguing over a dumb point. I absolutely agree with you, Smitty. If LaRoche hits 35, his head will be bigger than Barry Bonds’ ego.

  14. I’m not that much of a believer in LaRoche but to think he can do 35 (not the 100) is so out of whack and will happen when hair begins to grow out of the palm of my hand.

    Also, pendleton wasn’t listed probably because he played mostly elsewhere and came to us near the end of his career.

  15. Another neat thing about the Hardball Times article: while the Sawx needed almost a century to get from Cy Young to Pedro, the Braves built 3/5ths of their pitching reputation entirely on the basis of one decade.

    Basically, what I’m trying to say is, everyone else sucks, while the Braves rock. Go Braves!

  16. OK, so I don’t know how many people saw this because I posted it last night after Mac had already created this new thread, but it’s too good to just get buried. Apparently, Darren Daulton has some, uh, interesting views on things.

    I’m too lazy to post the link again, but if you go down to the bottom of the previous thread, there’s one there. Good stuff.

  17. I would have guessed that the Braves finished first at third base. Mathews, Chipper, and Evans alone are three of the dozen best third basemen ever, and when you throw in Elliot (forgotten, but very good) and Horner, that’s a lot.

    The Braves stars, as I mentioned during my all-time team entries last summer, have mostly been third basemen, centerfielders, and pitchers. In addition to the guys from the nineties, there were Spahn, Niekro, and Nichols, and a number of other pitchers from the prewar era.

  18. I hope that Jurries makes the team over Jordan/Diaz…guy deserves his shot… Let him give the LH’s day off’s versus lefties, but don’t make him a strict platoon guy at either postion…

    I also won’t be shocked if Kelly gets in the lineup by playing more than just the OF this season… He has minor league experinece at 3B,SS,LF,RF(Correct me if I’m wrong) and has been took grounders at 2B last spring and was said to have looked very good by those that watched him…

  19. I’m gonna disagree slightly with those who think LaRoche would get worse by playing everday and…or that it would only add a slight increase in his run production…

    He might struggle a time’s vs LH’s…but the more consistantly he faces them the better he’ll get, and not only that….By getting more consistant AB’s his #’s vs RH’s should improve….

  20. Enjoyed this quote from Giles:

    “I told Jimmie (Johnson) and those guys over there, ‘I’m going to be the first guy to swing at the first pitch of the season ó and swing hard, too,’ “

    Apparently the image of Kaz Matsui drilling the very first pitch of the 2004 season (and also the very first pitch he ever saw in the major leagues) off of Russ Ortiz into the outfield seats isn’t burned into his memory like it is mine. Maybe because I finally got to go to Opening Day and we were all excited and then BAM! Oh well, we got the last laugh on the Mets I guess.

  21. Well, I read the Darren Daulton article, and I have to wonder if that guy is really clinically insane. If someone came up to me and started talking about how they were living in a “Fifth Dimension,” I would run away. That was the weirdest thing I’ve ever read.

  22. Daulton has just fallen in with New Age folks. No big deal. He’s not that much weirder than Steve Carlton. At least he’s not offering anything anti-Semitic or homophobic (oh, sorry, that’s our No.1 starter).

  23. Are we talking about John Smoltz? I’ve seen no indications that he’s either anti-Semitic or homophobic. Please elaborate.

  24. I only bring it up because, unlike the 2 pitchers mentioned, nothing Daulton said was hateful, just a little loony.

    Christophobic? Not really. I just don’t have much patience for folks (especially public figures) perpetuating that level of ignorance. I’ll call ’em on it, even if it’s my favorite pitcher.

    If you care to know what Smoltz reportedly said, go ahead and Google it. As much as I like Smoltz, I found it hugely disappointing.

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