The third member of the 43-119 2003 Tigers that the Braves have imported, following Adam Bernero and Fredo Ledezma. Steve Avery was also a member of that team, and Mark Redman had left after the prior season. Your guess is as good as mine as to why the Braves are so intent upon bringing in members of the worst team of the last 40 years.
Infante hit .302 in AA, at the age of 19, which is pretty impressive even though he didn’t walk a whole lot or hit for power. He didn’t play as well in AAA the next year, but the Tigers called him up and made him their shortstop in September anyway, and in the next season he played a key role in their march to 119 losses, hitting .222/.278/.258 in 69 games, which somehow won him a full-time second base job in 2004.
He actually played pretty well that year, .264/.317/.449, but that’s a high point. He split time between second and short in 2005, hitting .222/.254/.367. He’s played better the last couple of years, not well — hitting in the .270s with few walks and not much power — and played six positions, all three in the outfield and every infield position but first. His defensive statistics at shortstop are quite good, but the Tigers obviously felt he wasn’t up to the task. They dealt him to the Cubs for Jacque Jones, and the Cubs sent him to the Braves in the Jose Ascanio trade.
His similar batters through Age 25 actually include some good players, Jay Bell and Jeff Blauser, but I doubt he’s really that young.
At least Infante is better than Orr/Woodward. Trading for him tells me that the Braves don’t have much faith in Aybar either….
So, basically, he sucks.
I would rip Wren more for this deal because the few months I watched Ascancio in 2007, I was impressed. I personally think Infante and Ohman are both worthless.
I refuse to rip Wren like everyone else in here for the Kotsay deal because I will say it again, when healthy, Kotsay could be a decent, cheap-o option.
But Infante and Ohman have really never been anything but crap. There’s nothing in those Infante numbers to indicate this guy is going to be any better than Chris Woodward. They both suck.
Say hello to the double-switch, Omar.
“C’mon, Double-Switch! C’mon, Switchy!”
I think Infante getting his own “thread” on Bravesjournal is an indication how much we still have to kill to the start of the Baseball season.
Still probably a step up from Pete Orr or Chris Woodward. And probably not really any worse than Kotsay as a break-glass-and-bleed-to-death CF.
Really? I appreciate your optimisim but I fail to see how Omar Infante is a step up from even the dregs like Orr & Woodward?
I think a good glove man makes the club out of Spring Training. Glavine and Hudson will certainly appreciate him. And we know who bats eighth when Omar plays!
He had some surprising pop in 2004. Odds are he’ll hit one out sometime. Hope it’s when we really need it.
A dead Lockhart is better than a living Woodward.
This guy will be fine. He isn’t going to be Chipper, but he does have playoff experience. Then again, so did Wee Willy Harris.
He gets a pass from me because he isn’t Orr or Woodward. And what the heck, if he can hit .270 off the bench, then he’s a definite plus.
He’s a freakin’ utility bench player. He’s not supposed to be an all star.
The moves are being driven by money as usual. You can argue whether Kotsay is worth anything but the point is that Wren obviously doesn’t have a lot of money to spend regardless of what they said earlier. I don’t like trading young pitchers for aging, injured outfielders but let’s see how it works out before we commit Wren to the purgatory of Jim Bowden comparisons. (But if Steve Phillips says he likes the trade, that will be the end.)
As for Infante and Ohman, who knows? The Braves generally don’t pay much attention to the bench. I would like to see them have just one guy on the bench that could actually hit once in a while.
Smitty (from last thread),
It was the Houston farm team that I saw in Chattanooga, I don’t know if it was Columbus or not. But it was over 30 years ago.
Nothing to get excited about as long as he doesn’t get a lot of playing time. Can spell Chipper, Escobar and KJ when it gets hot. Yawn.
Alex, Ive done an almost 180 on the Kotsay thing. But, being the pessimist that I am, I think the best the we are going to get out of the shell of Kotsay is that he doesn’t suck as bad as Josh Anderson would have.
On Wren, B on the off season. The big difference is perception of the club. He sees a sustainable contender. Just a few pieces here and there around a solid core. Valid. The team had a winning record, scored over 800 runs, failed becuase of a lousy back third of the rotation and a tired as hell bullpen. I’ve already articulated where I think we are so I’ll spare the electrons.
I like having Infante. Like Woodward, he’s incredibly versatile. Unlike Woodward, that versatility includes being able to (1) play defense and (2) not totally embarrass himself, his family, and the Braves’ organization at the plate.
And I don’t necessarily think his acquisition is a reflection on the team’s confidence in Aybar—although, seriously, how could the front office peeps be that confident in Aybar?—because he can play SS and Aybar apparently cannot.
NO Tennessee Brave!!!! Everyone on this team must hit .335 with an OPS of 7,000.2 and a Bill PECOTA ranking of 13. If they don’t, then they suck.
FWIW, I have to agree with the Sky-Is-Not-Falling crowd here with respect to The Wren Administration.
Yes, the Kotsay trade was underwhelming and could backfire, especially given the puzzling comments about our need to acquire another reliever. I liked the Ascanio trade and I love the Renteria trade. I’m not saying I feel totally confident about our future, but let’s not let a relatively minor middle-reliever-for-center-fielder swap define Wren’s tenure. At least not yet.
i’ll give el infante a chance for the same reasons seatpainter listed above. he’s already a major upgrade because of those same reasons. let’s face it just not having those two guys in bobby’s arsenal is an upgrade…hell it’s a super size on our #6 combo.
are you guys listening to mitchell’s report?
IS Major Applewhite going back to Texas?
I’ve no idea. Ask him.
Wren has really only done four things since becoming GM: trading Ascanio for Infante and Ohman (which also meant the release of Willie Harris), signing Glavine, trading Renteria, and the Kotsay trade. I don’t think that’s enough activity to make a conclusive statement about his ability as a GM. And when you consider 3 of those things were pretty much indisputably good, then I don’t see why anyone is down on Wren.
I do agree, however, that he doesn’t have as much money as he said/believed he did. Does anyone think that’s not true?
Stu, I agree completely.
Anything to get Woodward off the team. Here’s my question, though: is Infante a speed demon that can wreak havoc on the bases?
I dunno if jea was being sarcastic, but really, does Infante have good speed? We won’t seem to have a whole lot of speed on our bench this year.
That’s why Javy got an invite.
The Kotsay deal was stupid. Not cataclysmic for sure, but stupid. It very well may help the team next year. I half agree with Alex R.:
Kotsay could be a “decent” option, but he’s already more expensive than he should have been, $2M be damned. When you consider we’ll have to pay some veteran $5M annually instead of the league minimum we’d have paid for Devine the next 3 years, it really seems like the main objective was just to get rid of Devine.
Either that or the front office (and I guess no other FO in baseball, since you think someone would have ponied up) has any faith that Devine will be able to pitch effectively at the ML level.
I think $2M for a gamble on Kotsay is pretty darn good. If he’s healthy, he produces his career norms which are good and he provides good defense with a great arm. I think $2M is cheap.
@ 24: I was being sarcastic, at least with my chosen phrasing. It would be nice if he was fast, I guess, but I was mostly messing around.
Here’s my question, though: is Infante a speed demon that can wreak havoc on the bases?
I hope not. I saw enough caught stealings last season with Willie Harris.
I have been asked to catalog Sosa: An Autobiography. My question: Should I create a “Steroid users — Biography” subject heading for this no doubt fine work of literature “written” by a man who later claimed to not understand English?
#17: So the guy is going to be the everyday centerfielder (until the point he sucks so bad even Bobby can’t take anymore), hit at the top of the order (likely), and we had to give up two young pitchers including a promising former first round pick and that’s a ‘minor’ deal?
I’m going to go with no.
Bill Shakespeare is trembling in his grave.
As for Infante, he’s set up perfectly here. The organization is used to getting absolutely nothing out of their backup infielders so if he does anything at all well he’ll be a hero.
He’ll serve as a good barometer for the team, the more he plays, the worse things are going.
You left off his 1 other move – dumping crappy Oscar Villareal for essentially a back up outfielder in Josh Anderson. Sorry, my utter visceral hatred of Oscar is not allowing me to be objective – but I call that a + move as well.
So yes, once again you have put a very sensible and reasonable post on Bravesjournal.
In my mind, the Wren administration is about a B-.
*We dumped a .222 batting average from the MIDDLE of the order
*We upgraded the starting rotation
*We got rid of some dead weight (re: Harris, Woodward, Villareal)
*And by dumping a piece of dead weight like Oscar, it opens the door for a good young arm to make the pen.
The reason for my B- is I think the oppiortunity was presenting itself for Wren to go harder after Haren or Bedard. Yes, even at the expense of Jordan Schafer.
Glavine is certainly an upgrade for the 2008 season to the rotation, and gives me more confidence we can win the division, but Bedard or Haren would have made us the NL favorite for the World Series. As this team stands, we are “in the mix” but not bnecessarily better than the Padres, Diamondbacks, or Phillies.
The only thing positive I can say about a scrub like Infante is that his name is not Pete Orr or Chris Woodward.
Sometimes Bravesjournal is a strange place.
No one in here is willing to even give Kotsay a chance, even though we got him on the cheap (and the 2 young pitchers we traded Robert weren’t exactly going to turn this organization on its ear), yet we get a nothing, scrub of a middle infielder as a reserve, and suddenly Infante is “hailed” as a potential surprise.
I just find it rather strange.
I like that grading scale. Two guys I had an irrational dislike for are gone so he must be doing a good job. Funny stuff.
Alex, I’m with you on the B-. I’m still, on the whole, favorable toward the Wren Administration, though I sure ain’t as happy as I was a week ago. (I just did a player analysis of the real star in the trade, that cool $5 million.)
Mac, you know, Sosa hasn’t exactly been convicted of anything yet. I’d just put it in Baseball — biographies and see that it wasn’t anywhere near Catcher in the Wry.
Devine’s stats in the minors last year: 57 IP, 78 Ks, 1.89 ERA. He’s a much more valuable than Kotsay for even this coming season much less the seasons after that. It’s a bad deal period. Frank Wren has already been awarded the Allard Baird Memorial ‘Check with that guy before I do anything’ status by Billy Beane.
It’s hard to evaluate each individual transaction in isolation. Presumably, when a GM sets out to make the team for a given year, he develops an overall strategy; hopefully, he is not simply making trades willy-nilly. Plus, hopefully, he is trying to balance current needs with future potential. And, plus, unless it’s the Yankees or Red Sox, he has to look at payroll considerations. So, you can’t really judge these trades in a vacuum. The idea is to put together a competitive team without sacrificing too much in the future. Obviously, the Braves think more of Kotsay than most people on this blog and/or they think less of Devine. We will see who is correct but it’s a bit early to be throwing Wren under the bus.
With the ages of Chipper and Smoltz and the impending loss of Tex, the goal should have been to go all-in this year. Our apparent budget surplus was a good sign, the signing of Glavine was a good sign. But then we didn’t chase any of the big name pitchers out there and we did nothing useful to fill the gaping void in center. To me it looks like we have once again hedged our way into 85 win land which is no place to be.
Who’s the second guy? I mentioned my irrational dislike of Oscar Villareal – I realize he’s chunky, but he only constitutes 1 guy.
And everyone irrationally hates Chris Woodward.
My “irrational dislike” was born from the fact that oscar spent his Braves career putting runners on and creating stressful situations for the team in about half or more than half the games he appeared in.
You’re a master at belittling my comments, but my comments are borne from the fact that oscar is a crappy relief pitcher and that’s one less guy to stress the majority of Braves fans out, everytime he takes the mound.
If Oscar was a stud with a 1.97 ERA and a ton of strikeouts, I wouldn’t irrationally dislike him – and I would kill Wren for trading him for a scrub outfielder like Josh Anderson.
alex R the first, not the (an)other,
i think that if kotsay had cost us little (which he should have) then no one here would have paid much notice to a minor trade. instead we paid “healthy price” for a guy who has floundered for the past two years due to injury and is coming off back surgery to play CF. a position i’m told is good to have speed and range at. i could careless about what we gave up for him, those guys probably wouldn’t play much anyway. what is alarming is that we take on salary for an injured 32 yrld who will most likely see a lot of playing time.
el Infante on the other hand will play occasionally, is an upgrade to both woody and speedy pete and i hear that he can speak 3 languages! what’s not to like?
30 — mac, who actually wrote it? and is his command of the language better than sosa’s? i could have written it for sammy if i had known. once again i find compelling proof that i’m in the wrong line of work.
You people need to look better ao Ohman and Infante. Ohman’s numbers for his entire careeer outside Wrigley say “lefty set up man.” It certainly is partly a statistical fluke, but there are too many innings for it not to be partly true. With us, he won’t pitch more than twice in a series and thus twice in a year in Wrigley.
Infante is better defensively at shortstop than anybody else we have had in the “post Furcal Era” and will OPS 700 or so. That is GOOD FOR SOMEONE AS A UTILITY GUY.
Plus, Ascanio is a fairly high ceiling prospect, but no more so than Devine.
this was not meant as an attack, only an explanation.
Alex – Your first * in post 34 is a reference to the second guy.
As for Oscar, his numbers say he’s an adequate major league pitcher. We traded him for a guy who if everything breaks right might be a decent fifth outfielder – a job that doesn’t exist anymore – to save money. I’m not giving any gold stars out for that deal.
The real problem with Devine for Kotsay is that all of the “if’s” go against us (similarly, the planets must all align correctly) and there shouldn’t have been a perceived need to pull the trigger so quickly.
First, Anderson was basically like the local crack head prostitute (true story)that told her STD public health official that she had rented herself for 45 cents. When he was astounded she said, well that was all he had. The Astros had nothing and the Braves weren’t going to offer arb to Oscar.
If (there is that word again) Kotsay had been playing winter ball or we were two weeks into spring training, then maybe one of our “if’s” (if Kotsay is healthy) would go away. But right now we have a 2 million commitment and two less pitchers on a player that is 32 years old and was not healthy enough to contribut any VORP last year and has barely generated any VORP over the entire last 3 years. Who else was Beane going to trade him to?
“If” Devine never makes it at the ML level, then obviously we did allright. However IM non HO there is a 90% chance that he is at least a 4th righthander and a 20% chance that he is an 8th inning guy and a 10% chance that he is a closer. BUT EVEN AS A 4TH RIGHTHANDER he is worth more than the minimum and the arb.
And Wren is talking about finding a relief pitcher. Ae we going to pay soeone else as much money this year as Deveine would earn in 3? or maybe what he would earn in 6?
Considering the lack of innings we got from our starting pitchers, we needed a lot better than an “adequate” pitcher like Oscar – and calling him adequate is generous.
If we saved a few bucks by dumping his mediocre stuff onto the Astros – even better.
the only bad thing about shipping off the vulture is finding another rubber arm to take on his innings. maybe dance’n lance cormier can fill that role.
If Infante’s good for a 700 OPS, can he play center field?
I think Jeff Bennett could fill that role better. I think Cormier is done with the Braves, right?
Nothing’s minor if you bring melodrama into it. Trading someone who likely would have had minimal impact on the team for the foreseeable future for someone else who likely will have minimal impact on the team for the foreseeable future looks “relatively minor” to me.
His ERA+s with us were 123 and 100, that’s better than adequate really. Having a guy around who can pitch basically anytime for as long as you want is pretty handy.
Everybody reaction to Wren declaring he needs another relief pitcher should have been the same: “Maybe if you would stop giving away the ones you have…”
your right, i was thinking of Buddy Carlyle.
you really do need to start working on your mind reading skills 😉
I don’t think that starting position players have a minimal impact on the team. Backups, sure. Bullpen arms, yeah. Guys that start every day and hit at the top of the order, not so much.
When Scott Thorman was a starter he had a fairly major impact on the team of sucking runs from our offense and sucking wins from our win total. But at least he was free.
What you are paying for in getting Kotsay is the marginal improvement in offense and defense over the “last man standing” (Anderson, Blanco, Lillibridge, Schaffer, Brandon Jones, Infante, whoever).
There is no reasonable basis to assert that Kotsay has more defensive value than Anderson. He can pick ’em. Maye Kotsay’s arm (“if healthy”) offsets part of that, but clearly D is not a minus on Anderson.
Anderson could ops 600 if things go bad, 780 or so if things go good. Kotsay has been around 700 for about 3 years. His peak is 850 ish.
So really, you are probably adding 100 ops points (“if healthy”)to one of 9 line up spots and paying 2 million and giving up 2 cost controlled players, one an “iffy” possibility and one a most likely useful Maajor League part who would be cheap for 6 (count em) years.
By the way, I know some of you are of the “win now” mindset. I disagree to the extent that I prefer efforts at long term competitiveness over a rich man’s version of the Florida Marlins. Once you are a 90 win team, ther is little variation in the odds of reaching the World Series.
THEN, if we get some postseason success in NL, THEN increase payroll and try to compete with the big boy league.
Sadly, I think ole Buddy Carlyle is still with the team too.
My sense is that once Mike Hampton is officially announced as starting the 2008 season on the DL (we can all agree ths is inevitable, like death and taxes – right?) the rotation then becomes Smoltz-Glavine-Hudson-James and a battle for the 5 spot between Jurgjens, Jo Jo, Carlyle and Bennett.
My gut prediction…Jurgjens wins the 5th spot, Bennett gets the Oscar long relief/spot start spot, Jo Jo goes to Richmond/Gwinnett, and Buddy Carlyle will be waived.
That’s just my guess.
my guess is that hampton’s spine will drop out of his pants the last week of spring training and buddy will be safe and sound.
That reminds me… new poll!
I don’t get the starting pitcher “surplus”.
Smoltz, Hudson, Glavine, James, Hampton, Jurrjens, Reyes, Bennett….
Honestly, can the Braves count for even one second on Jurrjens, Reyes, Bennett and especially Hampton?
I am a bit more optimistic about some of our back end rotation options.
I have to think James’ offseason program will help him last longer in games this season. Most people in here are fairly optimistic about Jurgjens stuff, and Bennett not only did a terrific job in his short stint, but according to the AJC today at the Fanfest, Bennett has dropped 60 lbs. That should make him even more durable for that potential Oscar role.
Plus, even Jo Jo Reyes…he was really young last year but at times, his stuff looked great. He’s likely in Richmond to start, but I feel good about his stuff as well, long term.
In fact, the only pitcher I am not psyched about is Buddy Carlyle.
I agree that the Braves shouldn’t be throwing away their future for a (possibly) ephemeral chance to win the WS this year. By the same token, you can’t always be looking toward the future; at some point, you have to try to win not just be competitive. The Braves may have a window of opportunity with Smoltz, Glavine, Teixera, et. al, to win big which may disappear next year. This isn’t the nineties any more so a team like the Braves can’t assume that they will have the same chance to win next year that they do this year. If the Mets were to sign Santana next year, for example, this would seriously hurt the Braves chances. I don’t think there is anything wrong with making moves for the now as long as you don’t mortgage the future. That’s a difficult balance and I’m not enamored with the Kotsay move, but I don’t think any of the moves that the Braves have made last year or this year will cripple them to the point where they become the Marlins. And while I agree with you to some extent that you cannot substantially increase the odds of winning the WS given the unpredictability of the playoffs, I don’t think it makes sense to build a minimalist team and hope we get hot in the playoffs. I think you should try to build the best possible team.
I know I am almost the only one on here, but I think Hampton is going to log 160 or more innings of 110 ERA+ pitching and finish the year as a good Major League 3 (with an outside shot at 2A). I don’t guess it’s just that it is a contract year (Andruw Jones?). I don’t believe it is pure optimsm. Maybe I am just crazy.
So, I throw out the above as another prediction (which is probably about worth my prediction last year that Thorman would only be slightly worse than LaRoche and, even worse, that Wilson would bounce back).
Also, I think to assume that Hampton will be healthy enough to contribute positively (4 or better MLB starter) is not, to me, as long of a stretch to having Kotsay contribute more than 1 win share over the contribution of the “last man standing”.
But, ASSUMING THE ABOVE FANTASY then doesn’t this look like an awfully tough team to beat?
Also, Charlie Morton is maybe in the “depth at starting pitcher”. I think he has one more option year, so he would have to be seriously good to get consideration this year.
I tend to agree with you on your assessment of Hampton (although I’d be a bit more modest on my projections). I just don’t think he is going to want to spend another season just watching everyone else play.
This team will be fine for this year. It is next year I’m worried about. Glavine will almost certainly be gone, as will Hampton. Smoltz might retire as well. So that leaves us Hudson, James, Reyes, Jurjeendjuejdns, and maybe Morton????? This is why I was upset at our inability to nab one of Bedard or Haren.
Cliff you have some mighty optimism for Hampton, but lets remember that it has been at least 18 months since he pitched on regular basis. He is a pitcher that will rely heavily on the location and sharpness of his sinker. If he makes it through ST, it will take him at least 15-20 starts to regain his form. I hope that someone can provide what you described whether it be James, Hampton Jurrjens, Reyes or Bennet matters not to me, just as long as it is someone.
and Bennett not only did a terrific job in his short stint
Jeff Bennett: 3.46 ERA in 13 innings for the Atlanta Braves in 2007.
Not really anything to get excited about there. He only pitched 13 innings. As for the weight, well, we heard about that with Andruw Jones coming into last season.
14 Ks against 3 BBs in 13 innings sure does provide an interesting tease, though.
14 Ks against 3 BBs in 13 innings sure does provide an interesting tease, though.
I liked the way Bennett pitched inside a lot too. It seems like everyone pitches away now. He should be just fine as the new Villarreal, but I wouldn’t give Bennett a rotation spot unless a lot of things go wrong with the Braves’ other starting pitchers.
Buddy Carlyle got off to a great start too. If you remember, he struck out the side on nine pitches in one game. I’m very skeptical about pinning a lot of hopes on a journeyman. I really hope that Jurggens or Reyes show something although maybe they would be better off starting in the minors.
say what you like but we got plenty of bang for our buck with Buddy.
you have to adjust your level of expectations with guys like this. i look at Bennett as a situational starter and an middle innings relief guy. so with that i hope he’ll better than the vulture, anything past that is gravy!
Didn’t Hampton hurt himself in his first inning of winter ball?
Bennett is not the same kind of journeyman that Buddy Carlyle is/was. Bennett was a young relief pitcher really looking good in Milwaukee (throwing 97, think Soriano two years ago) that got hurt. Now, he has battled his way back as a starter (throwing 92 to maybe 95 every once and a while).
Until last year, Carlyle had never consistently been good. His only chance at being effective at the Major League level is if the outstanding control he had at Richmond (59 innings, 56K, 9BB and it wasn’t a gimmick pitch or gimmick delivery) and before his first elbow injury (yes, he was that good, hitting spots almost like a poor man’s Maddux) returns AND if he can still keep from being hammered.
If Carlyle’s late struggles were just “the hitters figured him out” there isn’t much he can do.
I think so, but it may have been in warmups.
Didn’t Griffey play in his greatest number of games since 2000 this past year? People will get over injuries, it’s just a matter of when.
Yes they Joshua, but the older they get the harder it is form them to regain their previous form
I know Justin. I just needed something to support my argument, and couldn’t think of anything else. My argument was weak as it was, but I surely wasn’t going to admit that.
…OOPS, didn’t mean to change my name.
[BAD TASTE]I’m waiting for Dave Dravecky to come back from his injury.[/BAD TASTE]
I guess nobody else saw the other post, so my name never changed anyways…sorry.
Another factor hurting Hampton is the injuries have been to his arm and it will take time to get his mechanics back. I don’t know if ST is enough time.
Alex R. – I’m firmly with you on the Give Kotsay a chance bandwagon. Yes, he could be the OF version of Chris Woodward, but we didn’t give up anyone who was going to help us this year. (Whether Devine could have landed us someone better in another deal, of course, is a legit proposal). But if Kotsay is healthy, then he is a major upgrade over the LMSB. (Last Man Standing Brigade). Devine’s loss is more of an opportunity cost issue – by trading him for Kotsay, we’re giving up any other player we could have traded him for, since I don’t believe BC has any confidence in him after his performances in Atlanta. So until we see what’s left in Kotsay’s tank, we can’t evaluate this trade, only moan about what we MIGHT have gotten out of Devine. I have to grade this trade as an INCOMPLETE.
I can’t see Bennett being any worse than a wash for the Vulture, with a better upside. Plus we got Anderson from Houston for a player we were going to waive anyway. This trade is a LOT better, since it amounts to Houston giving us Anderson. This trade, while positive, doesn’t thrill me, so I’ll give it a B-.
The Renteria trade is clearly a deal from a postion of strength, since Escobar had convinced BC that he can play SS. Jurrjens and Hernandez will be two of our better prospects, with Jurrjens having a chance to help us this year. This trade gets a B+, due to the high caliber of prospects we received from the Tigers.
Ascanio for Ohman/Infante I have to give a B+, since Infante slays the Woodward/Orr two-headed monster. I wonder to whom PGT Orr will bequeath the pictures.
I love the Glavine signing, so to me, Wren gets a solid B+ for his off-season moves. That grade will obviously be moved by how Kotsay performs.
I’d have to give the Renteria trade an A…
I thought Hampton hurt his leg stretching for a ball hit up the middle. The video looked like one of those mistaken kick-save attempts.
I never could stand Dave Dravecky—didn’t like those mid-’80s Padres at all, really—but what happened to him was a unique kind of horrific.
If Hampton pitches 50 innings for us this year, I will eat my hat.
I’ll hold you to that sansho
I ain’t scairt!
I wouldn’t really be scared either.
Hamption did hurt his leg in Mexico, but I was referring to his multiple surgeries on his throwing arm as being a factor in his returning to his previous form. I should have been clearer and stated that had it been an injury to any part of his body than his arm, I would be more optimistic of his chances for success.
Probably threw out his back tying his shoe as well.
I remember an old board game on the back of a box of cereal featuring Super Dave Osborne. One of the squares read, “Super Dave stubs his toe on a blade of grass and injures his head. Lose a turn.”
I think that’s where we are with Mike.
Wouldn’t doubt it
Now that the A’s aquired Devine some people are speculating Street could be on the move. Do they know something about Devine that the Braves didn’t?
that he’s cheep!
Street’s been on the block a long time, same as Blanton. Nothing to see there, folks. It’s fire sale time in Oakland.
I wouldn’t give the Renteria deal an A yet, as it is still early and Girkys and jairmight NOT pan out. It has the potential to be an A trade, I will agree.
2008 the last year of the Richmond Braves.
FI hope you cataloged the Sosa book under “Alternate History, Fiction”
I just read Dave Dravecky’s story and, man, Mac, that’s mean.
I believe one of the top ten signs you have a successful blog is that you can get 100+ responses to an entry about Omar Infante.
Is Dan Kolb still playing or what?
another just curious question: with brandon jones/diaz, josh anderson, infante prado/aybar, and (my guess) lopez, does scott thorman have a place on this team?
normal field starters- 8
rotation- 5 with one swingman
bullpen- ring, ohman, yates, soriano, moylan, acosta, resop (or gonzalez when he returns).
that would mean we really wouldnt have a backup first baseman on the team, but can’t diaz fill that role? i wonder what piece of meat we could get for thorman? also, it seems to me that one of aybar or prado have to go. do either have any options, and i bet this has been discussed several times, but i really cant remember the answer. also, i’m on vicadin due to a root canal so i might not be even making sense.
maybe old news to some, but i found it disheartening. hopefully, chuck hung up the offseason lumber work at Lowes and is actually rehabbing and trying to become a better pitcher.
AAR, Marc, other DC Braves fans-
We should try and plan to hit a Richmond Braves game together since it is their last year.
Just a thought!
who would you keep in a 3 player keeper league
Smoltz, Arod, Oswalt, Ichiro, or Magglio
I’m thinking Arod, Ichiro, and Maggs
Oswalt’s K’s are diminishing every year
just saw ghostbusters at a retro film series, not bad.
Interesting, per ESPN
West VA is conducting an investigation into missing files and reports. Its believed that Rich Rod may have destroyed all files on current roster players and weight room information…
I’d keep Oswalt, Maggs, and A-Rod. But Oswalt is one of my favorite players, so I’m a little bias.
Go with your first instincts – A-Rod, Ichiro and Maggs.
And I am biased towards Magglio because we have the same birthday.
Ichiro will add a dynamic that is difficult to get, so I would say go with A-Rod, Ichiro, and Maggs. Good pitching should be held on to, but not at the expense of two great hitters and one that will provide runs, hits, stolen bases, etc. I’m not a big fantasy baseball guy, though, so people may disagree.
I was looking at Oswalt’s wikipedia page and I saw that he was in the 2000 Olympics. I looked at the USA roster from that team and the ’96 team and there are quite a few more players from the ’96 team that have made some sort of significant impact in the majors. I know this probably means nothing to everyone here, but I thought it was somewhat interesting. Also, I don’t want to do my homework, so I’m finding most things interesting right now.
My theory with Buddy is that he was money against teams without dangerous hitters and pretty bad against teams without weak stretches in the lineup. Sounds like a universal, but Davies was a guy who didn’t really fit that.
Buddy seemed like a pitcher that wouldn’t beat himself, so against teams that couldn’t very well beat anyone offensively (Nats, Marlins), he was just what we needed. I dreaded his starts against the Mets, Phils, and I think one against the Red Sox, just because those teams have the hitting talent to plate a few against a guy that’s mostly around the plate.
Skeptical that Devine would have ever caught on with the Braves. Just a poor sequence of decisions, beginning-to-end, IMO. Cautiously neutral towards Kotsay.
I’ll go ahead and predict that our pen will be maddeningly inconsistent in 08 (really with or without Devine). Trading away from a pool of uncertainties may not make a big difference, but I don’t think it will help either. From recent experience, you can count on at least half of the question marks to make minimal positive contributions. Injury, youth, lack of track record – that pretty much covers our entire pen to some extent. Perhaps Soriano is a stretch for that, though.
Just saying, it wouldn’t be the first year we’d looked to have a good young pen and had it blow our team apart. It’d be something like 4 years straight.
Our bullpen was pretty good last year — it had the second-best ERA in the NL. The #4 and #5 slots in the rotation was what cost us a chance at the crapshoot.
Along with something less than championship-quality defense around the infield, I should say.
BP’s top 11 Braves prospects is up:
1. Jordan Schafer, CF
2. Jason Heyward, RF
3. Brent Lillibridge, SS
4. Brandon Jones, LF
5. Gorkys Hernandez, CF
6. Jair Jurrjens, RHP
7. Julio Teheran, RHP
8. Tommy Hanson, RHP
9. Cole Rohrbaugh, LHP
10. Cody Johnson, OF
11. Jeff Locke, LHP
Just Missing: Joey Devine, RHP (now with Oakland); Steve Evarts, LHP; Kris Medlen, RHP
Good morning, all.
B-pro’s list is just another reminder that Devine alone was too high of a price for Kotsay.
If Yunel does well at shortstop, it’s probably a good trade anyway, as the Braves gained youth and payroll flexibility (not that they use it anyway, though), even if the prospects don’t pan out. If you think that Edgar was going to regress (and I have my doubts about that), then it made sense to trade him assuming you had a capable replacement.
I think the bullpen will be pretty good. It was pretty good last year except for periods of inconsistency (especially the Soriano home run tour)but if the Braves had gotten some hits at key times, it would have been fine. I’m still more concerned about the rotation.
As for Dravecky, I’m not going to make fun of someone who is dead. But, as I recall, he was one of several John Birch Society members on that team. Pretty scary, not to mention the fight they had with the Braves in 1984.
I’m pretty sure that Dravecky’s not dead. Not coming back to play any time, no, but I heard him speak about a year ago, and haven’t heard anything about his passing.
Unless I’m retarded and you were using hyperbole.
I think he’s confusing Dravecky with Eric Show.
I’m sorry, you are right, it’s Eric Show. Sorry about that. Is Dravecky the guy that had cancer, came back and broke his arm pitching or was that Show?
Yeah, Dravecky’s the one who broke his arm. He eventually had to have it removed at the shoulder.
Eric Show was the pitcher with the Snidely Whiplash mustache. He gave up Pete Rose’s record-breaking hit & sat on the mound while Rose ate up the applause.
Somehow, he out-douchebagged Pete Rose.