Peterson Thomas Gord Orr

pete orr.JPGWell, that was a disaster. Orr’s batting average went from .300 in 2005 to .253, and since he’s pretty much all batting average whatever value as a hitter he had the previous year was wiped out. He wasn’t exactly a big plus to begin with. No power (18 career extra base hits, two homers, over 326 career PA) no walks (five last year, six the year before) and even his baserunning took a big fall (2 SB, 4 CS, after going 7-8). He doesn’t strike out a whole lot, but nearly twice as much as Aybar, so even his value as a put-it-in-play guy is lessened. His defensive stats are good, but this is in total violation of all visual perception, and I’m not that hardcore of a stat guy. It’s hard to see how Orr even makes the roster if Aybar and Woodward are on it.

Pete Orr Statistics – Baseball-Reference.com

168 thoughts on “Peterson Thomas Gord Orr”

  1. It would be one thing to flip Gonzalez for something good, while it’s another to picture him coming in to set up Rivera for the Yanks. I would loathe that trade just for that fact alone.

  2. We know that JS has his own idea about the best way to improve the team. And just because the nat’l media (ESPN particularly) picks up a theme (in this case, Gonzalez for Cabrera/Proctor) of course doesn’t mean that a deal is truly in the works.
    I’m trying to see this through JS’ eyes (obviously I don’t have his perspective, but trying to imagine), though, and the question I have is this – What about this deal would look attractive from JS/the Braves’ standpoint?
    It’s kind of a devil’s advocate question. I know the flip side, as far as why I don’t see a lot of value in the trade – ie. Cabrera does not appear to be an upgrade over Langerhans/Diaz, Proctor’s arm is likely to fall off, etc. But, for instance, is there a scouting report saying Cabrera is going to bust out like Miguel Cabrera; Proctor has been working ambidextrously, and can now actually throw harder from the left side & has been waiting for the opportunity to show the world; those types of things.
    Obviously a lot of the information JS has, we don’t have any idea about. I guess I’m just wondering if he has data we don’t that would say ‘this is a good deal’, as opposed to ‘they played a lot for the Yankees, so they’d help improve our team’.
    Anyway, just trying to get an idea of the positives of that potential trade…

  3. Pete isn’t that impressive skill-wise, but I always like to watch him play. He’s one of those guys (like Giles) that seems to always be hustling his butt off, and always gives 100%. My favorite thing, however, is that he really runs hard on every ground ball. I just like guys who do that. Although I suppose that when you are a marginal player, that’s the kind of thing you HAVE to do if you want to stick around.

  4. The Hardball Times article from the previous thread brought up the Cabrera/Proctor trade under the premise that Soriano/Gonzalez/Wickman may be a bit of overkill for the bullpen. I think that’s a load of crap, frankly. If each one of them was making 6-8 mil a piece or we didn’t have the fact that Wickman will probably not be here in 08, then maybe that premise may have some basis. Tell me, what team in the majors would not like to have 3 closers for the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings? and their total salaries are (Soriano – 1.2, Gonzalez – 2.35, Wickman – 6.5) 10.05 million. That is brilliant!!!

  5. That AJC article in an earlier thread indicated that Gonzo is in for the long haul, which is a relief (cymbal hit?). Though the thought of Soriano, Gonzo, and Wickman seems too good to be true (or stay true), I think JS is trying to make up for last year’s embarassing bullpen. Remember, we haven’t had a solid closer since Smoltz, so it couldn’t hurt to have a back up closer for such a reasonable salary!

  6. DOB reports on his blog that, in his conference call with Schuerholz, The Man says the current plan is for Thorman to be the regular 1B, and for Wilson to get as much time in LF as he does at 1B.

    Not sure what to think of this. I was hoping for a straight platoon at 1B, and I was hoping Diaz would be the everyday LF.

  7. Wilson is good enough to compete for playing time in LF and at 1B. I could still see him platooning at 1B, but playing LF when he’s not at 1B.

  8. The part that worries me isn’t that Wilson would get some time in LF, it’s that we’re apparently going to give Thorman the regular job with no real platoon — that’s a bad idea, IMO.

  9. Sansho, I will. I dont want Diaz in LF, I would rather put Langy out there and let him bat 8th. Have the platoon at 1st and have Diaz available as a bat off the bench. But its just me and Im sure most will disagree

  10. Maybe some of that will get sorted out in spring training. Bobby runs the day to day lineups, so we’ll have to see how it plays out. I too am not to confident in an everyday Thorman.

  11. I would also like to see Aybar at 2nd and batting leadoff, then have KJ and Woodward on the bench to fill in if need be. Chip goes down, move Aybar to third and then bring in KJ or Woodward. That does however throw off the timing on DP’s and other plays. Something to think about at least

  12. Petey’s gone, there just isn’t room for him, especially when you consider his only real value is as a pinch runner. I do wish that he could leave his hustle in Atlanta, to be dispersed among the lackadaisical. I never get tired of guys that bust it down the line and go all out on every play.

    I echo the thoughts that we need a straight platoon at 1B, with Wilson getting a few starts on the days Thorman starts at first, though that would mean he’d be facing a righty. I like the Wilson signing not only because it solidifies first base and gives us a solid 5th OF (well, offensively), but also because now we have a power bat off the bench in either Thorman or Wilson. Not that either of them is a masher, but before we got Wilson, there was really nobody available to come off the bench and hit a homer.

    2007’s looking good, now just stay healthy…

  13. If Diaz gets the starting nod and goes three weeks batting .240 or so, folks will be pleading for Langerhans.

  14. By the way, I just posted this on a dead chain, so thought I would re-post it to make myself feel less dumb. Sorry for the non sequitur …

    Back down all you Baldelli haters! I LOVE Baldelli. After all, a .289/.329/.451 career line is not unattractive, especially given the time he played injured. And since we could use a leadoff type, .339/.368/.650 with 11 HR in 183 leadoff ABs last year is not punch-and-judy stuff. I’ve seen him play. He runs the bases well, has good defensive speed, and seems like a nice guy. He’s also painfully cheap.

    Give the D-Rays Davies and Salty and Andruw. Geez, we can’t use them. (That’s a little facetious on Andruw.)

  15. I like Pete because he’s me when I played baseball. Fast, worked hard, and generally sucked. I like seeing me on the field with real MLB players. It’s fun.

  16. I don’t think any of us would kick Baldelli off the roster, Jeff. However, for the same reason we love him, so does everyone else. I suspect anyone who does trade for him will overpay.

    As for my playing days, I combined the awesomeness of Orr’s power, Todd Pratt’s average, and Pratt’s glove behind the plate. (I did have better patience than Frenchy, but that ain’t saying much.)

  17. Who’s out
    I’m factoring in all possibilities here, so dont think i am crazy.

    if this lillibridge kid pulls a furcal and impresses during spring, who will be the odd men out?

    also, from last year’s bullpen, reitsma, remlinger, ray, and a couple of others are gone. soriano and gonzales are new signings. in addition, foster is coming back healthy. who are the odd men out?

    with the craig wilson signing, we now have a surplus of backup infielders and outfielders, so who are the odd men out?

    For sures: Renteria, Chipper, andruw, aybar, frenchy, mccann, pena, langerhans, diaz, wilson, thorman, smoltz, hampton, james, hudson, davies, soriano, gonzales, mcbride, wickman

    Fighting for the remaining spots are: devine, yates, villareal, boyer, stockman, foster, paronto, cormier, moylan, sturtze, woodward, lillibridge, orr, blanco, prado (did i miss anyone?)

    What a great problem to have! I am very excited about the future of the atlanta braves. cant wait ’til march.

  18. With JS seeming to demonstrate a stronger grasp of low, fixed-budget teambuilding, do you think there’ll be a more conscious effort to manage service times for players?

    What I mean, is if you are considering Lillibridge for a platoon or backup slot (assuming he’s not ready to be a full time starter yet) would JS & BC specifically keep him down in AA/AAA, so the arbitration/FA clock doesn’t start ticking?

  19. I’ll make it 48, sansho. :)

    And, yeah, if Diaz doesn’t hit, I’d obviously prefer to have Langerhans in there. My desire for Diaz to be the regular is based on the premise that he’ll hit like he did last year.

    ryan c,

    I don’t think Davies is a sure thing. I think Villarreal is pretty close to a sure thing.

    Barring remarkable springs, I don’t expect Devine, Stockman, Foster, Cormier, Moylan, Lillibridge, Orr, Blanco, or Prado to have a real shot at the roster.

  20. This team has no room for Pete if Ayber is not the starter. I gut feeling tells me KJ may start at Richmond to further work on his defensive skill at second base…on the other hand, does he still have options left?!

  21. what did Dan say to sanho when the heard the latest Baldelli reference?

    He didn’t say it — he rolled it up and stabbed me in the eyes with it. Oh, the pain…the pain of it all!

  22. “Since November’s General Managers Meetings, Schuerholz had been talking to Pirates general manager Dave Littlefield, who wanted LaRoche to become the powerful left-handed bat his team needed. All along, the Braves were asking for Gonzalez and hoping that Littlefield would also include either center fielder Chris Duffy or second baseman Jose Castillo.”

    If this is indeed the case, then Littlefield is unbelievably stupid. Not giving up Duffy or Castillo but willing to part with a prime prospect?!

  23. Here’s what I wrote in response on the dead thread:

    That line is extremely unattractive, at least the middle part of it is. A .329 OBP is positively homely. It’s the equivalent of eight missing teeth, acne, and a hairlip. It’s lower than seven members of last year’s most-regular lineup (guess who!) or the two most-used bench players. It’s lower than Langerhans, whom many people want strung up from a lamppost for his ineffective offense. It’s lower than Francoeur’s 2005 OBP. The isolated OBP (OBP-AVG) is only six points ahead of Francoeur’s.

  24. As for Diaz, if he hits .240 there’s no reason to have him in the lineup. However, (1) there is no reason to think he’ll hit .240, considering that his career major league BA is .305 and career minor league .315, and (2) Bobby won’t leave him in the lineup if he did. Bobby, contrary to what his detractors say, is not stupid.

    Diaz is essentially the same hitter Baldelli is, but slightly better, and we already have him, and he’s cheap.

  25. All I’m saying re Diaz is he has to hit for a high average, because otherwise he’s worthless. Langerhans brings other things to the table, as you mentioned.

  26. Well, Mac, Diaz can’t play centerfield for sure…at the meantime, I am sensing from reading the articles that JS is signing Wilson to be the full-time leftfielder…

  27. Trivia time:

    Craig Wilson is in the top 100 all-time in a particular statistic. In fact, he has a chance to break into the top 50 this year, given enough playing time. What’s he so good at?

  28. Wilson looks even better at striking out than Frenchy. I’d sit him (Wilson) against any halfway competent right handed pitchers. Did Wilson hit in the 8 spot much? I wonder how many of his BB’s came due to him being pitched around to face someone else. If Wilson, Frenchy, and a pitcher were to hit 7,8, and 9, that would be a huge concentration of Ks.

  29. HBP it is! He’s got 87, which ties him for 98th all time. That includes 30 in 2004, his only full-time year. It seems he may have lost his taste for that particular method of getting on base after his injuries, as he only had 6 in about 400 PAs last year.

    Actually, this is something to consider. I noticed first the 90 point spread b/w his iffy BA and his pretty good OBP, and thought first to look at his walks, which are not too hot. The HBPs were what pushed him into decent OBP territory. Since it’s doubtful he’s learned to take a walk, his willingness to take a few shots to the ribcage might prove fairly significant. Heck, we’ve got other ways to mix and match if he goes down for a few games…I say dig in, buster!

  30. I think Wilson will play left against righties and first against lefties with Diaz moving to left in a weird platoon. At least I think that’s what will happen. In other words Wilson will get the lions share of the at bats as opposed to Diaz and Langerhans.

    I still have hope for Langerhans. I think that he can become a regular. A little hit lucky here, a couple of more extrabase hits there combined with his plate discipline and his defense and maybe just maybe. JC any PrOPS info on Ryan?

    But Mac, Diaz has no speed and he can’t play center field and he isn’t athletic and he isn’t as nice a guy as whats his face and ……. never mind. I’m not even taking my own advice that I gave Dan.

    I would be surprised if Pete Orr is on the roster next season. I like watching him play too because of his desire. But unfortunately he sucks.

  31. To Mac and Everyone Else:
    I was announcing some high school basketball games tonight, and a junior high team was playing when I showed up. I sat down by myself in the gym, and looked a few people over, where I saw Coach Tuberville. He looked visibly shaken from the hiring of Saban and vomited repetitively. He actually did come over and talk to me, since I’ve done some of his son’s games – asked me how I thought he was progressing, etc..

    So while Shula is not talking to the media, trying to find some more coaches, recruiting his butt off, Tuberville was talking junior high basketball with me.

    Ah well.

  32. Why Baldelli now is the question. You can try to trade for him next season, if Andruw leaves. Theoretically the Rays could say “you need him more now” in that case, but most players’ trade value decreases as they get more expensive. He doesn’t help the team in 2007 at all. Not one bit. And he might hurt it, because they’d lead him off even though he’s the second-worst OBP guy on the team. If Baldelli were able to stay healthy and lead off a whole season, he’d lead the league in outs.

  33. Definitely Mac. The signing of Wilson makes no reason why the Braves have to overpay for Baldelli. I think JS is hoping the signing of Wilson will offset of dropoff in offense from Adam to Thorman, and I think it’s a great signing.

    Personally, I think this is the best offseason JS has since his first one before the 1991 season.

  34. Excellent point about Baldelli although I would think that JS would bet that he’d be a significant upgrade over Langy in left for this year. Why don’t we officially stop all the talk about him and start talking about getting Carl Crawford again? – just kidding! I also don’t see much point in getting Cabrera or Rios now either. Wilson, Langy, Diaz are adequate.

    For all the uncertainties a few months ago, there may be less open spots on this Braves team than any in recent memory. It seems like every year there are two or three bullpen spots available that go to relative unknowns (Ken Ray, Adam Bernero, …) and a 5th starter is usually up in the air. Unless JS shakes things up with another trade, we are pretty close to being set.

  35. I just went fishing for a picture of Brent Lillibridge and found this ” rel=”nofollow”>huge photo.

    Apparently, a year and a half ago, Lillibridge was still wearing braces.

  36. Mac, of course, you know that I was being sarcastic. I agree totally. I am thinking that Schuerholz has had an A hotstove if he quits right now. To review:
    1. Soriano. got him for an at best 5th starter. Leveraged the fact that the Mariners were worried about his noggin and the high price for starters this crazy market into a plus right handed arm.
    2. Gonzalez. Leveraged a terrific but possible outlier July and ‘August out of Adam LaRoche for a LEFT HANDED plus reliever with closer stuff and a legitemit middle infield prospect. The gamble is that he did get hurt last season.

    The upshot is that Schuerholz has improved our pitching from the back end. In this crazy market with JASON MARQUIS for crying out loud geting 21 million, that is the most cost efective way to do it. Now all that our questionable starting staff has to do is pitch 6 innings. Its a gamble but a good one. As much as I liked the big 3 era of Braves baseball at current salaries no team short of the Yankees will be able to do that again.
    3. Acquired Craig Wilson via free agency. It would be asking too much for Wilson to repeat his 2004 season but even if he comes close to his career averages he is a better option in left than Diaz or Langerhans because of his power. Even if he is just a platoon first baseman he makes the bench so much stronger and gives us some hope of production out of an offensive position.
    4. Let Marcus Giles by non tender. I was against this big time at first but I’ve sort of come around to the prevailing thinking that Giles is in decline and the money he was going to be paid in an arb settlement was too much for his projected production. A gutsy move considering Giles contributions and his popularity with the fans.
    5. Resisted the temptation to trade any pitcher for Rocco Baldelli. I’m not trying to be snarky here. Folks here know that I think that Baldelli sucks but that isn’t the prevailing thought in the scout oriented Braves orgnaization. With Andruw’s imminent departure and a need for a ‘real leadoff hitter’ it would have been tempting for another GM to trade a Kyle Davies or God forbid a Chuck James for a player that looks so good (but isn’t). But in this pitching market even Kyle Davies potential is more valuable than Rocco Baldelli.

    In a weak NL the Braves look pretty good on paper. A lot of things have to go right but I think that the core of the team as its composed right now has a good chance to win.

  37. Good post Johnny. There are several “ifs” going into next season beginning with “if starting pitchers stay healthy” and “if Chipper logs 130 games”, but no more than any other NL East team. On paper, I think we have a slightly greater than 50% chance to at least make it to the playoffs without anymore moves. With the trades, I also like our chances better for a few years to come.

  38. Johnny, the current roster is already a better team than last year’s one. I think the moves this offseason correctly addresses the issue of the team. All the “ifs” are basically health issues that exist even before the moves.

    Yes, there are injury history to Soriano and Gonzalez, but that is the inherent risk in acquiring every pitcher. The two adds so much depth to the bullpen and will actually help the starting pitchers because they know they don’t HAVE TO pitch a complete game every time out. The trio of Soriano, Gonzalez, and Wickman will have a similar effect as the Mets having Heilman, Sanchez, and Wagner.

    I am so excited about the upcoming season now.

  39. We’ll see. I’m still supremely confident that Baldelli’s going to have a very, very good year. And he’s got more power and is a much better defender than Diaz. And Baldelli makes $750K this year, so when you say Diaz is “cheaper,” it ain’t by enough to make up for those other areas.

    For the record, I would be against batting him leadoff; I’m not convinced that Bobby would necessarily do that, either. As I’ve said, he looks like a perfect fit for the sixth spot in the order.

  40. The Hardball times thing went soley on the wishful thinking of the guy who runs that Talking Chop blog. For some reason, he believes Melky Cabrera is the god that the New York media has painted him to be. Above average batting average, somewhat decent speed, good defence and little power. Basically a dime-a-dozen player who, if he had come up with the Devil Rays, no one would think anything of. Scott Proctor is really nothing special either.

    David O’Brien and Mark Bowman have made it pretty clear that Gonzalez is staying. And no amount of groaning, talking and speculation from Yankee fans, Talking Chop, the hardball times, the New York media, ESPN and whoever else is going to change that. If Yankee fans really believe the Melky Cabrera hype, they should be thrilled he is likely staying.

    Mark Bowman (the rest of the article makes it pretty clear Gonzalez is staying):

    Now with his bullpen significantly enhanced, Schuerholz could make yet another move. But at the same time, it appears he’d confidently head into Spring Training with the roster as it currently stands.

    “It’s probably fair to say at this moment, I anticipate we’ll go to Spring Training with this bunch,” Schuerholz said. “Am I comfortable? Absolutely, yes. Most everyone internally I’ve talked to feels the same way. We feel good about that work that we’ve done and are anxious to get going.”

    http://newyork.mets.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070119&content_id=1782442&vkey=hotstove2006&fext=.jsp

    David O’Brien:

    When some of you saw that the LaRoche/Gonzalez deal was done Wednesday (actually it won’t be finalized until they pass physicals, with no announcement expected until Friday or even Saturday), you immediately speculated it must be part of some bigger plan.

    Some of you figured _ or read the speculation on other websites _ that the Braves got Gonzalez only so they could “flip” him to the Yankees or Devil Rays (we love to obsess over Rocco and Crawford here … Hey, I’m guilty for fueling much of the Baldelli talk a while back).

    While I’m not entirely ruling out the possibility, I was assured today by a Braves person I trust that they got Gonzalez to keep him in their bullpen, to make their bullpen a monster that will help reduce most games to 6-7 innings next season. Not to flip him to another team.

  41. I re-upped at BPro because their 2007 PECOTA forecasts are out. Here are some of their anticipated highlights and lowlights for the ’07 Braves:

    Kelly Johnson — .291/.374/.495
    Frenchy — .288/.330/.506
    McCann — .304/.368/.529
    Chipper — .292/.392/.532 (in 550 PA)
    Andruw — .279/.365/.540
    Diaz — .302/.345/.486
    Langy — .266/.363/.451
    Renteria — .286/.347/.412
    Thorman — .274/.328/.456
    (LaRoche) — .277/.352/.511
    Brian Jordan — .244/.310/.427 (60 PAs)

    Smoltz — 14-9, 3.70, 208 IP
    Hudson — 12-10, 4.21, 192 IP
    James — 8-8, 4.39, 135 IP
    Hampton — 3-4, 5.32, 53 IP
    Davies — 5-6, 4.97, 91 IP
    Soriano — 3-3, 4S, 3.51, 59 IP, 60K
    Wickman — 2-3, 14S, 4.11, 42

    (forecasts for Pirates)
    Gonzalez — 3-4, 24S, 2.17, 54 IP, 64K
    Lillibridge — .277/.349/.428

    (forecast for Yankees)
    C. Wilson — .242/.319/.441

    They’re very high on KJ’s offense, though they still list him at LF. I think we’d take those Francoeur numbers. Diaz and Langerhans to have similar production via dissimilar means. They project Lillibridge to be significantly better than Renteria right now (VORP 6.0 to 4.3).

    Not too hot on the pitching, with a tank year from Hampton, not much improvement from Hudson, and a step back for James. And they much prefer Gonzomania to Wickmania.

    (Note the similarity between Wilson and Mr. Jordan)

  42. Pffft. Last year, they projected Francoeur to have a 14.9 VORP. DIdn’t work out so well, did it?

    I guess PECOTA would say that Wilson would be like Brian Jordan because of his suckitude in New York.

  43. The most disturbing projection? 60 ABs for Brian Jordan.

    I would absolutely take those numbers from Smurph.

  44. I really like this team. I think we can let KJ and Aybar battle for 2B/Leadoff. I would like another stater, but our rotation is soild and our pen is of the chains

  45. Stu,

    Well, it has to churn out something, even for people who don’t play. It is a formula, after all. And Brian Jordan is still a free agent.

    And that’s sixty plate appearances. ;)

  46. Wow, Hampton pitches 53 innings. What a surprise, considering the PECOTA formula only has 2005 to build on, where he pitched just, oh, I don’t know… 69 1/3 innings?

  47. what would be your prediction on the number of innings our starters get?

    Smoltz 200-220

    Hudson 170-190
    James
    Hampton

    Davies 150-170

    am I way off

  48. Wells Agrees To Contract With Padres
    According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, David Wells has agreed to a one-year deal. He gets $3MM guaranteed and can earn an additional $4MM in incentives. Kevin Towers thinks Jake Peavy, Greg Maddux, Chris Young, Clay Hensley, and Wells make up the team’s best rotation since ’98.

  49. I would have to say that if James and Hampton stay healthy enough, they’d get about 120-140 innings, at least. Sure, Hampton’s elbow could blow up on him, but we can at least afford to be even a little optimistic with him.

  50. good article on the Roach trade…..

    All attempts to get Duffy or Castillo didn’t work, and it wasn’t until Lillibridge was offered that this deal truly neared its completion. While playing for Class A Hickory and High Class A Lynchburg in 2006, the 23-year-old shortstop combined to hit .305 with 13 homers and 53 stolen bases (66 attempts).

    Braves media relations director Brad Hainje determined that Lillibridge was the only Minor Leaguer in ’06 to hit at least .300 with 10 home runs, 50 RBIs, 50 stolen bases and a .400 on-base percentage.

    “However great his offensive numbers have been, people think his defensive capabilities might even be better than that,” said Schuerholz of Lillibridge, who will likely begin this season at Double-A Mississippi.

    While Lillibridge could one day be Atlanta’s leadoff hitter, Gonzalez was obviously the centerpiece of this deal for the Braves. Along with being perfect with each of his 24 save opportunities last season, the 28-year-old left-hander limited opponents to a .213 batting average and posted a 2.17 ERA in his 54 innings.

    http://atlanta.braves.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070119&content_id=1782442&vkey=news_atl&fext=.jsp&c_id=atl

    “Any hitter you talk to who has ever taken a bat to home plate against him says he is dominant,” Schuerholz said. “He is what he is. He’s an outstanding relief pitcher.”

  51. csg,

    I just threw that number out there for both of them. If James stays healthy, he’ll get about as much as Hudson would.

  52. Smoltz is going to be great, dare I say CY Young great now that he knows a lead will be safe if he only goes 6-7 innings.

  53. A stunningly average rotation with this bullpen and offense will be enough to win the division, and maybe even get Smoltz a Cy Young with lots of shiny wins. If it isn’t stunningly healthy, though, look out below.

    Cox should put Hampton on a very short leash for the first few starts of the season (say, 5 innings/ 80 pitches) to ease him in. We’ve got a pen that can carry that unless the evil version of Hudson arrives or someone else gets a bad case of the sucks.

  54. I’ve just discovered that Pete Captain Canado Orr was born exatcly 10 years before me, day to day. Should I be happy, or affraid ?

  55. I would guess that Hampton ought to end up with fewer innings than the others simply because he is returning from major arm surgery. If I recall, when Smoltz came back, he began as a starter and wasn’t terribly effective, hence the move to the bullpen. So, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him pitch in 3 and 4 inning bursts early on, and perhaps by the middle of season getting to 5 and 6 innings. If history is correct, he won’t be back to normal (whatever that is for Hampton now) until next season. I’d say if he was 10-7 with a 4.25 era and about 150 innings, it will be a successful season for him and the Braves.

  56. But to add just a bit more, it may be more probably to assume a couple of scar tissue tear-scares and the such, along with a couple of dl visits. Thus, a record of 6-8 or 5-7 might be just as probable for Hampton. As a result if I were the Braves, I would pencil Hampton in for the 5th starter role and skip him as much as possible early on. And I’d prepare Villareal for a bunch of early vulture-like activities.

  57. Hampton will probably be alright–the extra time will help. But Davies is the real question mark. The Davies of 2006 will not cut it–no bullpen can save a pitcher with an ERA over 8.00. While I have always been a big fan of Davies, at this point he has to re-establish himself. I hope that he can pull it off, but until then the Braves have only 4 credible starters….

  58. hopefully Davies has been working on a third pitch. I think after his debut in Boston he put way too much on himself. He needs to settle in and build his confidence. I think he could easily put up the kind of numbers HoRam or Marquis had in the 5 spot. No, it isn’t stellar but he could go out and get us 10 to 14 wins next year…or at least not lose too many games, then the rest of the team can help him put it together.

    Hopefully the Braves wont be in a spot where they really count on him to produce. April can’t get here soon enough.

  59. An internet sports betting site has the Braves 8:1 to win the division and 40:1 to win the world series.
    Which is a better bet? either? both?

  60. beedee: I hope that you are right about Davies and my sense last year was the Braves rushed him back and he was not ready. I agree that Davies should be able to make a solid contibution (there is reason to hope for much more as he still has a high ceiling) as a starter. Also, the Braves have lived with bad #5 starters before (see: Shane Reynolds). Nevertheless, given Smoltz’s age, Hampton’s recovery, Hudson’s decline and James’ youth, I think that the Braves really need to get one more starter–or at worst someone who could come up from AAA and be relatively effective at eating innings.

    I am also eager for April…

  61. S.O a B. Extra Innings is going exclusively to Direct TV, no more through your cable provider.
    I cant get Direct TV in my neighborhood so now I can not get NFL Sunday Ticket ot MLB Extra Innings.
    Selig sucks.

  62. I think the Braves are much better 8:1 to win the division. I’m a bit more leary about the WS bet, however. I mean, they not only need to get there, but then they’re one out of 8 teams in something of a “crap shoot”. I’d say Atlanta is about 1:5 to win the division (meaning a 1/6 chance). Thus, if the playoffs are completely random, the odds of them winning the WS are 1/6*1/8=1/48, meaning 1:47 odds.

    So I’d definitely take the division odds over the WS odds.

    Out of curiousity, what are thier odds for the Mets, Phils, Marlins, and Nats?

  63. Was on a business trip in Anaheim & missed all the trade fun. Had some misgivings about it for a day—then I caught the Craig Wilson news on a TV crawl in the Hilton Bar & my spirits perked. I think I like it.

    I was one of the few who stuck up for LaRoche through the rougher times, but I see the upside here. We may have just gone from The Bullpen of Shame to The Bullpen of Doom.

    Incidentally, I’m going on vacation to Panama later this week (my sister’s family is there—her hubby is in the State Dept) & I just found out that I’m going to a formal cocktail party with a bunch of Latin ballplayers (former & current) this Friday—Mariano Rivera, Carlos Lee, Olmedo Saenz, Elias Sosa & the immortal Omar Moreno.

    Oughtta be interesting. Anybody have good questions? Fire away.

  64. King,
    that kid is always beating us up and taking our lunch money.i guess we could always hope the Yankees come knock’n and take Utley away.

  65. It seems that the Patriots ahve been playing with a bit of a mean streak towards the end of the season. Both Brady and Manning have lost some of their weapons this year, but i think Belichick has the Colt’s number.

    I grew up loathing the name Peyton Manning, but i have to say he is probably the best QB in the league. I hope for his sake he get’s the win. I still don’t think they’ll win the Super Bowl if they play the Saints.

  66. You may want to move then Davey. I have a feeling it may be happening sooner rather than later.

  67. Sam,
    Neither. The Braves are the Brooklyn Dodgers of the late ’40s & ’50s. One title, lots of first-place finishes.

    I have to admit it—I’m rooting for Peyton here, although I’m believe the Pats will snuff him out again.

  68. Manning is a great quarterback. I hope he gets it this year. I don’t see why people don’t like this guy.

  69. Wow. What a game. I wanted Indy to win, but I tell ya what, there’s something about Bellichick and Brady that makes you like them too.

  70. That was a terrific game. Much respect to the Pats, but I’m afraid was rooting for Peyton.

    And you knew this was coming…two SEC QBs going at it in the Super Bowl.

  71. Alright, what’s the reasons for the Peyton Manning hate? Like for real, there better be something real. It better not be the proverbial “he plays for the other team and he wins a lot!” stuff.

  72. Why do we hate the Mets Rob?

    I’m a Miami Hurricane fan…..and I also have been rooting somewhat for the Gators since Peyton was at Tennessee.

    After that he gets drafted by the Colts, who at that time were in the same division as my Miami Dolphins. Got to see Peyton twice a year.

    The Colts move…don’t have to play him anymore, but now he’s breaking the records of my all-time favorite player…Dan Marino.

    Sorry if I’m not Peyton’s biggest fan…

  73. Rob,

    I personally don’t hate Manning, I think he’s a great QB…I just hate the Colts. And for the reason, I just do…Just like i’m sure you have teams that you hate for no apparent reason.

    and Sam,

    What exactly do you mean by “get over yourselves” ?

  74. I don’t hate the Mets, Davey. Don’t lump me in with that stupidity. “They’re our rivals! Therefore, I have to hate me!” That’s ridiculous. Hows about I sure as heck do NOT like the Mets, nor do I ever root for them, and it’s totally sweet to beat the Mets, but there’s nothing to hate about them. And of course, you can insert Florida State Seminoles, Tennessee Volunteers, Ohio State Buckeyes (especially this year with football and basketball), Georgia Bulldogs, and Miami Hurricanes in for Mets.

  75. Oh,

    Well no I don’t hate Tennesse, and i’m not a bulldog either, I’m a Hokie till I die. The Dawgs were fine with me before…”the game”. But now I will hate them for at least a year and yes, that is because they beat Virginia Tech and I don’t care how biased that sounds. :)

  76. Oh, and Texas Longhorns during the 2004 CWS, Penn State, Iowa, Syracuse, and other teams the Gators have played in bowls.

  77. I have a problem with the Colts as a franchise. If you’re gonna leave Baltimore & go to Indy, call yourself the Indianapolis Hoosiers or something. Don’t take team name, uniform, identity, etc. Knowing Baltimore’s deep connection with the Colts (see the film “Diner” for evidence), that, to me, was despicable.

    But Peyton’s just a great player. No problem with him, really.

  78. I don’t “hate” Manning, I just don’t root for him. And every time someone says, “how can anyone hate Manning”, I just root against him more. There’s something about Manning that causes people to wonder why he doesn’t get unanimous support (i.e. “God Bless Peyton Manning” {sorry, Smitty}, “they stole Peyton’s Heisman”, blah blah blah), and I’m thinking, sure, he’s a great quarterback. Why isn’t it freaking okay for me to root for someone else? It just strengthens my resolve to root against him. Same reason I never saw Titanic.

  79. More substantially, I find his onfield manner petulant and annoying. For years, any time a play didn’t go well in a pressure situation, he would engage in these histrionics that served no purpose but to signal to the audience that, whatever just happened, it certainly wasn’t HIS fault. He has seemed to me to take teammates’ failings as a personal affront, then goes back to huddling with the coaches instead of rallying his troops. In that way, I’ve found him to be no better a leader than Michael Vick.

  80. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I actually pulled for Manning. I guess it’s because I’ve never bought into the “he can’t win the big games” garbage. As I’ve seen it, Indy has lost numerous times to NE for at least 3 reasons (sometimes all 3 in the same game, other times just 1 or 2 of these reasons):

    1) They were outcoached
    2) NE had the better team
    3) Indy’s Off. Line got blown away

    None of those 3 things were the case in tonight’s game.

  81. how thw hell do you hit something that big? the crew must have been drinking.
    they may have taken some inspiration from that whole Valdeze thing

  82. I love Peyton. I’m so, so happy for him. The Mannings — all of ’em, from Archie and Olivia on down — are some of the nicest, classiest people you’d ever want to meet.

    Oh, and Mac:

    Peyton is such a loser.

    He was 4-0 against Alabama.

  83. He was 4-0 against my school, too.

    But I think the big Peyton storyline is what keeps people interested—is he gonna end up like Marino or Elway?

  84. I would have brought that up had you shown the lack of tact Mac did in calling Peyton a loser, ububba. :)

  85. Mac,

    Is that kind of like how the NCAA doesn’t count wins under Gene Stallings? ;)

    Okay, I’ll stop.

  86. wow, great game. I wanted the Saints to win earlier, but no big deal. Why are we talking about the titanic movie? did I miss something?

  87. Thanks Jay10. A healthy number of former Braves as well as new acquisitions….

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