Braves 8, Brewers 7

Milwaukee Brewers vs. Atlanta Braves – Box Score – June 07, 2009 – ESPN

Tommy Hanson didn’t exactly impress in his first outing, but the Braves rallied behind their bullpen and Chipper to win the game anyway. Hanson cruised though the order the first time through, including striking out the side in the second. But in the fourth, after an error by Yunel, he gave up a two-run homer to Braun. In the fifth, he allowed a run-scoring double by the pitcher. In the sixth, he got massacred, allowing a pair of two-run homers, one by Braun and one by Cameron. You can see why he’s such a hot prospect, because he has great stuff, but he threw a few too many meatballs ahead in the count. I’d rather see that than the nibbling a lot of other prospects do.

Chipper was huge. In the first, he tripled in Yunel, though Diaz couldn’t get him home. In the third, he hit a solo homer to make it 2-0. Having fallen behind 3-2, Chipper hit a three-run homer in the fifth to make it 5-3. He singled in the seventh, but was stranded because Francoeur sucks. Finally, someone else did something. Typically, it was McCann, who didn’t start, but hit a pinch-double with one out to score Prado. McLouth, in the leadoff spot, doubled McCann home to tie the game, and Yunel singled him home to make it 8-7. Chipper, unsurpringly, was walked, and Diaz couldn’t get a hit to get some insurance.

The bullpen did its job. Bennett gave up a one-out triple in the seventh, but pitched around it. O’Flaherty got the win by pitching a scoreless eighth, helped by a caught stealing. Gonzalez got the benefit of a great double play turned by Prado at first and Yunel at short to get the save, despite his usual command issues.

To make room for Hanson, Kotchman went on the DL with his lingering leg problem. I assume Hanson will stay up, and that Prado will play first full-time. I don’t like it, and I think they should give Canizares a shot, but they really don’t like his defense.

117 thoughts on “Braves 8, Brewers 7”

  1. When the Braves rid themselves of Jeff Francoeur, I’ll believe they released Glavine for “performance reasons.”

  2. Did you notice that Jeff saw less piches in four at-bats (8) than Hanson saw in two(9)?
    How much longer are they going to run him out there?
    Amazing win. I liked Hanson, he’ll be fine once he stops throwing his fastball right in the middle of the strike zone.

  3. Very interesting take by Rany Jazayerli on the Royals acquiring the Out Machine.

    Be warned:

    A. He compares Stenchy to Jermaine Dye. Which should give Gadfly some more ammo for 239439859834983 words.

    B. He wants to trade Jose Guillen if the Royals pay for his salary this year (we’d be on the hook for 12MM next year)

  4. “Bennett gave up a one-out triple in the seventh”

    really it was a double where the runner was thrown out at 3rd, but was called safe. how many times have we seen missed calls on us this year? it was clearly an out also

  5. The sentence:

    “In the first, he tripled in Yunel, though Diaz couldn’t get him home”

    should read:

    “In the first, he tripled in Yunel, though Diaz and Francoeur, who sucks, couldn’t get him home”

  6. Great game. Kudos to the lady wearing a Mets shirt (odd choice of apparel for a Braves/Brewers game) who gave my son her Brian McCann bat. They had run out of bats by the time we got to the game and this lady saw my 4 year old son crying and give him hers. I have no idea who this lady was but she made my day (she and that 8th inning rally).

  7. I just read the article about out machine. Look, I’m all for upgrading RF, but Jose Guillen? Yuck. Too bad of a contract for too bad of a player.

  8. I had a great seat for Hanson’s debut, which went swimmingly the first time through the order. That’s what I choose to remember of his performance.

    Curiously, we were among more Brewers fans than Braves fans….

  9. prado, although looking rather awkward around the bag, is playing a pretty good defensive first base.

  10. I seriously doubt it’s Prado’s decision on when to hold the runner and when to play back.

  11. Was at the game. Ran into regular poster Frank there as well. Really fun game to attend. Not too hot and lots of runs.

  12. I don’t know if Hanson tired or lost his concentration or what, but he looked like a different pitcher after the third. But while he was going, he had incredible stuff with impeccable location. He made a couple of truly perfect pitches.

    We’d really have something if we could get rid of Frenchy and get Kelly on a hot streak. I really can’t deal with Frenchy anymore. I’m just sick of looking at him.

  13. I’m not saying it was. Two guys easily stole second because of that today. One scored and the other brought the tying run in scoring position. At least make them earn it is all I’m saying.

  14. Read the Jazayerli article. Ok. I get the comparison but how often does lightening strike in the same place. I sure wish the Royals had something we wanted.

    Craig Calcaterra quoted in the article. Used as an example of how sick fans are of Francouer. But I’m so sick of Frenchy that if I were the GM I would even consider paying 5 or 6 hundred thousand of his contract this year. Probably a good thing I’m not the GM.

    edit: Ok thats it other teams in baseball. Its not really Jeff Francouer you would be getting. Its the slim possibility that you’d be getting Jermaine Dye! C’mon what do you have to lose?

  15. I get Rany’s argument, but the thing he takes for granted is Jeff Francoeur’s stupidity. I don’t think that can be under-estimated. I’d probably hold out some hope for him, too, but the guy’s a simpleton.

    The Royals have a RF in Double A who’s hitting pretty well. He’s a 24-year old in AA, so he’s probably not much of a prospect, but I’d trade Frenchy for nearly anything if we could somehow free up enough cash to trade for a suitable replacement.

  16. One personal highlight from the game today — KJ came up in the sixth inning to the tune of “Your Love” by The Outfield, about which I remarked, “So Kelly Johnson gets fired up by wuss rock? Watch out for a dribbler back to the pitcher.” Whereupon he promptly bunted the next pitch right back to the pitcher. Thankyouverymuch.

    My new theory is that the team needs more Metallica fans….

  17. Frenchy could come up to “Wherever I may roam” as he awaits to be DFAd. Or maybe “Sad but true”… for the fans watching him play everyday. You know, just to cherry pick a couple off of their most popular album.

  18. Francoeur grounded out to second, third, short and the pitcher. If only he had one more at bat to ground out to first, he would have had what I am going to call the “Jeff Francoeur Cycle”.

  19. @19
    Ridiculously funny!

    jeff francoeur has now left 11 men on base in 5 june games. he is on pace to break his terribly bad may (if if recall, he had 10 rbi’s with 59 runners stranded).

  20. The Jeff Francoeur Cycle involves 4 strikeouts. All on pitches so bad the catcher can’t hang on. On one there’s a runner on 1st and the catcher throws to 2nd to complete the strikeout. On one there’s a force at 3rd and he throws to 3rd to complete it. On one there’s a force at home and he just steps on home plate. And on one he goes the traditional way and completes the strikeout at 1st.

  21. My take on Hanson…

    Stuff is insane. Those HRs were all a product of that fastball tailing back over the plate. Question, does he throw a cutter? Because those fastballs on the edge didn’t tail much at all.

    Did anyone else get the impression he might have a “blowup” streak in him? He knows his stuff is amazing. He’s used to owning opposing teams, so when he misteps he kinda throws in the towel a bit. After that first HR from Braun, for the rest of the game he looked like he was “moping” a bit. His fastball was coming in around 92 as well.

  22. Well, I think his fastball was tailing back over the plate because he was overthrowing when he got ahead in the count. Trying to put every hitter away with the fastball. David Ross kept calling an 0-1 curveball and would rarely call anything else off-speed. I kept saying 0-2 or 1-2, time to go to the slider or hook, but it rarely came. I don’t know if it was Hanson’s decision, Ross’s decision, or Management’s decision, but I felt like he wasn’t mixing his pitches enough and kept trying to blow people away with his fastball. But no, he doesn’t throw a cutter. He throws a fastball, curveball, slider, and change-up (that we didn’t see much of today).

  23. Fun day at the ballpark … I’ve been in GA 12 years and this is only my second game at the Ted. The first was 1999ish and featured a great Andruw catch–he made a running grab and ended up against the outfield wall like spiderman–that was part of the tv intro for a few years.

    Chipper was the man even if the triple was really a single plus a Prado. Key hits from BMac and McLouth and the first 3 innings from Hanson were impressive.

    I figured Francoeur would strike out when he came up in the 7th, but–Timo’s comment @2 is spot on–you actually have to see 3 pitches in an at bat in order to strike out. I guess I’ve taught my kid well–every time Francoeur came up Pee Wee would turn to me or my wife and say “inning over.”

    Re Counsel’s triple–it wouldn’t even have been close if Francoeur had played it better. In fairness he did have a sweet catch a few batters earlier.

    Seeing Garrett “The Glide” Anderson in person is every bit as inpirational as watching his play on the tele.

    Good to see JC at the Ted. If he hadn’t beaten me to the comment thread I was going to say something about him wearing a Francoeur jersey and doing a Gadfly imitation.

    Re roster moves–they might as well send Medlen back down b/c Cox is apparently unwilling to use him.

  24. Read the Rany bit. Nice & hopeful—if you’re a Braves fan. But I wonder if he’s really watched Francoeur very much.

    If he’d watched Frenchy degenerate as a baseball player, the idea of acquiring him wouldn’t be a question of overrated or underrated. It would be a question of sanity.

    Look, I hope Francoeur goes somewhere and “proves us wrong.” I hope he succeeds & makes a lotta money & is happy playing baseball for the rest of his professional life. I just want him off this team. I’m sick of looking at him, too.

    Spent the weekend in Maryland with a quick trip in and out of DC. (I was working an electronic-music event—OK, it was a gigantic, messy rave.) Because I spent some time in the car, I got to listen to sizable chunks of the Nats-Mets games & I gotta say that there’s an element of “Lord-Do-We-Suck” resignation on the part of the Nats’ radio announcers.

    Reminded me of the ’70s & ’80s hopelessness of our old Bravos—minus Skip’s acerbic wit. Made me really appreciate how he could make that bunch tolerable.

  25. Just finished playing with pitch f/x data for Hanson’s start. Before I do my full write-up, here’s the short version. Hanson threw 55 fastballs with an average velocity of 93.6 MPH. He threw 16 curveballs with an average velocity of 75.88 MPH. He threw 19 sliders with an average velocity of 86.0 MPH. And he threw 1 change-up at 83 MPH (a ball WAY outside to Fielder). There were 20 action pitches off of his fastball, batters hit .316/.350/.842 off of his fastball (12 outs, 2 singles, 1 2B, 3 HR, 1 BB, 1 reach on error). There were 6 action pitches off his other pitches, 3 off of his curveball and 3 off of his slider. They all resulted in outs. He got 1 strikeout looking and 2 swinging on his fastball and 2 strikeouts swinging on his curveball.

  26. Let’s not read too much into Hanson’s debut. It’s only one game guys. One thing for certain: if he can spot that fastball like Smoltzie can or like he did in that first three innings, the sky is the limit for that kid.

    Hanson and JJ…man…

  27. I don’t know if anyone put this on the game thread but here’s a snip from Peter Gammons:

    Or that Jeff Francoeur has a .271 on-base percentage, .632 OPS and through Thursday had swung at the first pitch in 109 of 213 plate appearances.

    BTW, is it just my imagination or did Gammons develop a sudden fondness for statistical analysis (ops etc.) about the time the Sox hired Bill James?

  28. To go back to an earlier poster, if Francoeur comes to the plate to any Metallica song, it has to be “The Thing That Should Not Be.”

  29. Definitely send Medlen back down.

    He has a great start in the Bigs, so we send him to the pen to never pitch again? Sheesh!

  30. Exactly Parish, I have no clue what Bobby is thinking. Why send Medlen to the pen if Bobby is not going to use him?

  31. I’m gonna drill Francoeur until he’s gone.

    From May 7th through last night’s game, Stenchcouer is 20-for-97 (.206) with a .240 OBP, .258 SLG and a .498 OPS. That, my friends, is ATROCIOUS for an *everyday* corner outfielder. Furthermore, he has THREE extra-base hits over that span.

    What is it going to take for the Braves to move on?

  32. The lesson being Bobby Cox needs to retire?

    A sign we need to see at the stadium:

    “McCann / McLouth

    If it’s not Scottish
    It’s crap!”

  33. A pretty good start for Hanson. He definitely showed why he has the chance to be a great pitcher. However, like so many talented rookie starters he got hit before it was all over. That is part of his education. All told, he will be able to build on what he achieved and will continue to grow as a pitcher. It should also put to rest the idea that some have that Hanson would arrive and immediately be Smoltz….He should develop…but he will need to keep growing….

    with respect to Frenchy….truly dreadful at bats–which simply means that there is an order to the universe…..

  34. What’s more, wouldn’t Medlen be our primary insurance against an injury to our starting rotation? Glavine, Morton, and Hanson are now gone from the bench.

    I think he has shown signs that he can be a pretty good MLB starter.

    He needs to be in the rotation in Gwinnett now.

  35. In terms of depth Gwinnett has Armas Jr. and Redmond. Then it gets interesting: they had Parr–who was then injured; they had Deunte Heath–who was then injured and now they have Lyman. I really like the idea of giving Lyman the chance to regain his promise as a starter; I am guessing that the Braves are treating him the way the did with Morton in 2007. Take a talented pitcher who has consistently underpreformed, promote him and see if he develops.

    I do think Medlen needs innings somewhere….

  36. Medlen will probably be in there the next time a starter doesn’t go six. He wasn’t available until the beginning of this series after his start last Sunday anyway, and the pen just finished giving up one run in eight innings in the Brewers series. I assume he’s getting his throwing in. Is there really anything to see here?

  37. If you look at it that way, sansho, you don’t get to call on Bobby to retire. And why would anyone want to miss out on that?

  38. How does Medlen not have greater value as a starter?

    Stephen – Heath is injured? I thought he just pitched a couple of days ago.

    Also, I am interested that Lyman is suddenly in AAA. Let’s see how that works out.

  39. Also, what happened to Jordan Schafer?

    He was looking pretty good down there at Gwinnett, but he’s suddenly vanished from the lineup.

  40. Parish–Heath is now (at least as of yesterday) on the Danville roster…I am guessing that he need to do some kind of rehab….

  41. For those interested in the draft, Sickels breaks down the results from his mock draft:

    http://www.minorleagueball.com/

    I found his assessment of the Braves situation interesting–it could be that the fact the we don’t have a second pick means more than picking #7….

  42. after bringing up hanson and medlen, trading gorkys, locke, tyler flowers, and morton, our minor league has gotten pretty empty (apart from the obvious in heyward and freeman even though heyward hasnt played in a week and a half). i bet we see a big slide in rankings next year.

  43. Maybe: we still have lots of pitching–but then we also have Vazquez and McLouth. Heyward, Freeman, and Rohrbough remain; but we have at Rome alone Spruil, DeVall, Hoover and the two Delgados….

    For what it is worth, the ratings don’t matter in the long run. These ratings are based on who is in the system at a given moment–they tell something far more important: namely, which organizations do the best job of developing players that they have. Washington will improve in the ratings because they draft high–but it remains to be seen whether they can develop players….

  44. Medlin’s absence doesn’t necessarily require us to call for Bobby’s retirement. Perhaps it’s just a reason to question roster construction. We seem to, year after year, carry a bullpen pitcher who never pitches, and at the same time we always seem to be short a position/bench player.

  45. I think Medlen has greater value to the Atlanta Braves as a reliever on the big club than as a starter in Gwinnett. And anyway, he’ll get his chances — at some point somebody will struggle or get hurt. Swing man is a real role, and one Medlen himself played last year.

  46. Medlen is something of an enigma: a converted shortstop, having been lights out as a reliever he was promoted to AA and got hit very hard. The Braves experimented with making him a starter and then he really developed.

    Given this trajectory, I believe that we really don’t know (and I am not sure the Braves do either) where Medlen’s best future lies. However, it is important for him to keep pitching and finding his strengths (and weaknesses). Its a nice problem for an organization to have….

  47. Randy Greenway off the SportSouth Facebook on Francoeur: “I think he needs to relax and just play his game. He seems to be too occupied with fans reactions. If he were to be traded, I think it would be a BIG Mistake, not as bad as letting Brett Butler go, but a mistake all the same!”

    Daniel Woodson, also on Francoeur: “stay on board.. i think the heavier bat is going to continue to help him get back some confidence. The ball jumps more with a heavier bat.”

  48. Good luck, Alex. Try to find someone other than Randy Greenway or Daniel Woodson.

  49. sdp–Thanks for these wonderful quotes. They may serve as reminders for the great powers of denial and hope which enable the human species to continue in the face of adversity. More to the point, I guess that these writers would bring imagination to their task….I had never considered the heavy bat before….

  50. Considering Frenchy’s poor pitch recognition, “heavier bat” should have been right up there with “add a bunch of muscle in the offseason” in the roster of good ideas.

  51. Well… not sure what it implies, but John McCain has now criticized the Braves’ handling of Glavine:

  52. Best of luck to Alex–who has enabled Chop-n-Change to become a very dynamic site. It has been fun to make the occasional contribution and so I hope that he can recruit another blogger….

  53. RE: John McCain’s tweet.

    When an agent takes his contacts a little too far, it ends up backfiring. Way to call in a favor for something this frivolous. The Braves didn’t handle this gracefully, but this is out of hand. He got a million bucks and a fully paid rehab. Deal with it. If Glav was doing this for his love of the Braves, why did he accept a salary at all? Same with Smotlz.

  54. Speaking of unpaid re-hab… Anybody hear anything on Chuck James? I think he was expected to be out most of the season rehabbing. I don’t think they’ll find a spot on the ML roster for him any time soon, but I always liked his story and thought he might not be a bad back fill at AAA if he’s healthy enough and would take a minor league deal.

  55. I have not heard anything about Chuck James…Does anyone know about the status of Dustin Evans?

  56. Chuck was non-tendered–I guess that goes in the book the same way as “released.” He’s currently a free-agent but he had shoulder surgery last year. My guess is he’ll latch on with someone eventually, unless he went back to work at Lowe’s.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if he re-signed with the Braves in a minor-league deal.

  57. In a Gammons article on ESPN posted Saturday (which I just read) he stunned me.

    Nelson Cruz was put on waivers Spring of 08. The only commitment that the Braves would have had to make (I think this is right) was (1) roster spot (not sure if 25 man or 40 man) and (2) Major League Minimum for 1 year if he was on 25 man or 150,000 if he was on 40, but not on 25.

    And with his record at AAA (yes, problems in limited appearances at ML, not unlike Diaz, but with more power) and with the crying need for outfielders (Blanco? Anderson? Francoeur? Diaz (I like him, but he is not elite)? Schafer at AA on suspension; Jason Perry and Gorecki and Matt Young and Brandon Jones being the best nearby prospects and we didn’t take that shot?

    Somebody blew this one big time.

  58. I keep hitting AJC for a late breaking news item about the trade that sends Francouer to some unwitting team for a used left cleat and a sanitary sock. Sigh….. A fools errand on my part?

    Can any of you really smart guys(not Gadfly) name one reason why he is still playing….every game….and still sucking?

    @65 – good response.

    AAR good luck finding a writer. I like your stuff over at chop-n-change.

  59. It’s also worth nothing that Chuck James was once also bitten by a Copperhead snake and never sought medical attention.

  60. I knew he had been released/non-tendered, and was recovering from surgery and hence wasn’t expected to play most of this season. I assume there would be some info if he’d signed a minor league deal already… but I imagine if he’s an FA for now nobody wants to sign him and pay for his rehabbing. I’d like to think that he was good enough to have a solid minor league career with a few trips up as a spot starter… it’s nice to think of somebody still being able to make a moderate living doing something they enjoy (I assume he enjoys it) even if they’re not able to stick in the big leagues (equivalent to an indie-rock musician who can have a long career and pay his bills by having a few fans, but never have a hit song or make millions).

  61. I love looking at the history on his wikipedia page… items deleted include:

    Chuck James also goes by the name of Chewy…and likes to eat chupa chups.

    Chuck James sucks.

    He also is an accountant and his first name rhymes with a Mexican Burrito hut.

    Chewy doesn’t believe that I can make changes to eat. Keep eating your Chupa Chups.

    …and is a freaken beast!!!!!!!

    Currently works at toppers in Athens, GA as a stripper.

    * Chuck speed walks everywhere. Enjoys a combination of gin, tomato juice, and milk every night before he goes to bed.

    * Still is a free agent. Should have pitched for the Braves on 5-8-09 instead of Jo-Jo Reyes. He definitely could not have been worse.

    While in college, Chuck was bitten by a [[shark]] and never sought medical treatment.

    In a similar vein when Carradine died a few days ago somebody had put in that he was “killed by ninjas” and that shuriken’s were found in his neck.

  62. Incidentally… Neither Jo-Jo, Jordan, or Tommy G have that many “obviously mucking with it” items… one rant on Tom’s recent activity, and only one or two comments on Jo-Jo and Schafer. I wonder why Chuck gets all the wikipedia love/hate?

  63. Any person deserves to be treated with dignity, but people talk about athletes as if they somehow deserve extra special treatment. It’s not like Glavine was a POW in Viet Nam or something. He is (was) a great baseball player that made a hell of a lot of money doing something he really liked. I don’t have any opinion on the protest, but considering he is in the top, probably .005% in income, I don’t think he has much to complain about. And, while I’m sure he worked hard to try to pitch again, it’s not like he was digging ditches.

  64. I remember when someone on here messed around with Heyward’s wiki page when he was drafted.

    “Jason Heyward is a future outfielder or first-baseman for the Atlanta Braves. He played baseball in high school for Henry County High School in McDonough, Georgia. He was selected 14th overall in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft. He also lists his heroes as Chuck Norris, Mac Thomason, and God. It is rumored that in 6th Grade Math Class, Jason counted to infinity. Twice.”

    Who was it that did that?

  65. Pardon the insensitivity of the bad joke that follows it isn’t intended to imply any disrespect for any member of the armed services, just how bad the Braves were 20+ years ago:

    I dunno Marc, playing on the 88-90 Braves may have been almost like being a POW, or maybe just being a fan of that team felt like it.

  66. Well… late 80s Braves weren’t so funny even without a disclaimer (though recent flashbacks caused by watching the way the current team loses may lend even more POW metaphor fuel).

  67. There was absolutely no joy with the late 80’s Braves.
    Dale Murphy was the only guy to watch, it was a total horror show.

    On MLB channel yesterday they had recaps of the old all-star games, damn, they were fun back then. Murph looked like GIANT compares to most of the other guys.

  68. @81,

    Those Braves teams played like the French Army during the German Blitzkrieg. Of course, Francouer is still playing like that.

  69. I bet the Braves farm remains in the top ten, though trades will take their toll. The bulk of their prospects were probably younger than most teams and everybody graduates a few.

    Based on John Sickels’ list, the Braves have traded away 3 of the top 10 players from the end of last season, Locke, Flowers, and Gorkys. One of those guys was already gone when the Braves system was declared to be in the top 3-4 by BA and BP.

    Three other guys from Sickels’ top 10 will probably graduate, Hanson, Medlen, and Schafer. The remainder of Sickels’ top 20 is intact.

  70. It is interesting to note that Francoeur does indeed mean “heart of France”. Or not. Unreliable sources told me.

  71. This is off topic a bit but I was just looking through the draft tracker on the mlb website and its pretty weird seeing so many guys on there that I either played with or against in high school.

    Random, I know.

  72. Thoughts after a weekend in Atlanta:

    1. So long as his jersey and tee-shirts continue to be the best sellers for the Braves (Chipper’s are a distant second, McCann’s a more distant third), Francoeur will continue to be a Brave and play. He is absolutely awful–undisciplined and unrepentently so. He doesn’t seem to realize that he consistently hurts the team, his one clutch ninth innong home run notwithstanding. (Even a blind squirrel occasionally gets an acorn. Not a bad nickname for him–“Squirrel.”) The Braves management are to blame as well. In the highlight reel in the Braves Museum, his first game grand slam homerun is featured on a par with the 13-0 start, 1991 pennant, Sid’s slide, the 1995 Championship, Chipper’s and Smoltz’s milestone homer and strikeout, etc. As long as the Braves treat him like a star, he will never be gone.

    2. Tommy Hanson tips his pitches. That seems to be the reason he was blasted after the first time through the order. You could see it from the stands. He slows down his motion when he throws a breaking ball. His stuff is great, but major league hitters make adjustments that monor leaguers cannot. It is far from a fatal flaw–a little bit of coaching should help. Good test for McDowell.

    3. McLouth is going to be a terrific addition to the team. Is he locked up for three years? I hope so.

    4. Turner Field is a great place to see a game. While it is not Wrigley (I live in Chicago and have a season ticket to the Cubs), it is beautifully maintained, has terrific sight lines, and the people working there are as nice as can be.

  73. I feel the same way about Hanson tipping his curve. I though something was different, good call DougM

  74. Parish–It is true that many of these prospects remain in the system, but it has to be said that some have lost value. Brandon Hicks comes first to mind, but Kimbrel, Campbell, Rodriquez, Cabrera and now Randal Delgado have all struggled. In addition, Evarts and Rodgers are injured and Teheran’s velocity was down–so while some players have done alright, the value of a number of prospects has declined.

    More than anything else, the Braves are awfully short of quality position players.

    It should make for an interesting draft….

  75. Seriously? You guys detected Hanson tipping his pitches?

    If a batting order after one time through and a couple of guys in the stands can pick that up, then surely the coaches that have watched for 4 years would know.

    This suggests that it is a problem mostly limited to yesterday or that they have not been able to fix it.

  76. Another issue may be pitching out of the stretch. That is, his problems were mostly with runners on base. In minors and AFL he very seldom had runners on base. Therefore, it may not have been so obvious.

    It could also be mechanics out of the stretch. The first Braun fastball (per Gameday) was just above the belt and solidly on the inside part of the plat (2 to 3 inches in).

  77. According to the radar gun on the telecast, Hanson hit 100mph in one of the early innings.

    Anyone else catch that? Joe Simpson didn’t.

  78. He had a hitch at the end of his delivery, but like Mac said, it was on every pitch.

  79. Gameday went as high as 97 on Hanson’s pitches. Most fastballs after the first inning were 94 (first inning a lot of 92’s).

  80. When I first saw his stats, I was upset with Hanson’s performance, but when I saw his first couple innings on MLB network, I was just blown away. I have never seen a Braves pitcher with such overwhelming power. I’m less concerned about the problems later after seeing those first few innings. Wow!

    He clearly had a hitch in his delivery but I just though that was his normal windup.

  81. @97 – I agree. He has a slight pause at the start of the windup, right before he moves forward with his arm. But it was the same on EVERY pitch.

  82. Though I will say that I was wondering if that might lead to someone seeing his grip on the ball. He just sort of stops before the forward motion.

  83. Maybe. I don’t know that they’d have time to react. I have a feeling that the hesitation will throw off the hitter’s timing while making it easier to steal. I’ll take that exchange.

  84. I wish Glavine would quit whining. It’s no wonder why Maddux was by far my favorite of the big three.

  85. @107 – Smoltz was my favorite, but he has done pissed me off this offseason. It was always close between him and Maddux though. I just have so much respect for what Maddux was able to accomplish while throwing 90mph.

  86. Parra’s double came with Kendall on second, and I wonder if Kendall stole the sign. It would have been a perfect time to do it.

  87. Glavine and Smoltzie are quickly making Maddux my “far and away” favorite Braves starter from the Golden Years.

    In other “news”…from the No **** Sherlock department:

    Jon Heyman from CNNSi reports: “One Red Sox person was not impressed by what he saw from Jeff Francoeur.”

  88. I wonder in the last inning he threw; was Hanson tired from maybe over throwing early?

  89. Glavine was my first favorite, honestly. The icy demeanor… the smooth delivery each and every time… the changeup.

    Losing so many of the players I grew up with hurt, though. I went through a rebellious period in the late ’90s where I actively rooted against the Braves because I felt I just couldn’t recognize them any more, they didn’t feel like my team, and I didn’t want these new guys — B.J. Surhoff? Walt Weiss? — to get any pleasure from victory.

    But I’ve grown up a lot since then. They’re just players, and it’s just a business. But they’re my players, and it’s my business. I’ll always be a Braves fan. Tommy has his emotions, and he’s entitled to them. He did a lot for the club, and I’m not sorry that they let him go. Another day, another starter.

  90. Alex @ 112

    I can kinda see where you are coming from.

    But I guess my passion for the “old school” guys (the definition for what is “old school” seemingly changes daily) is tempered by a stronger passion to win.

    I freely admit he’s done plenty for the Braves. But I hate to hear it coming from him. And I hate to hear about what he’s done for the city of Atlanta, coming from him. I think that’s the wrong way of going about it. And that’s kinda something new…to hear that stuff from Tommy G.

    Glavine is certainly entitled to his emotions…I’d never say otherwise.

    This is the ridiculous thing: the players union has negotiated a clause where clubs can’t release a player due to financial reasons. That’s beyond absurd.

    I work in the manufacturing industry…our customers are continuously adjusting their workforce due to “financial reasons”. I think that extends to pretty much everywhere in the real world. Hell, even MLB players choose to leave clubs at the end of contracts based solely on financial reasons (ie – douchebag Tex), but yet owners can’t play by the same rules?

  91. OK, contest over.

    “Dixie Surrender Monkeys” wins Post of the Year. (And it’s only June.)

  92. OK, from 6/7/9 on Yahoo’s page for Frenchy there’s a link to a Rotowire thing on the Red Sox possible interest:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/players/7594

    The Red Sox have no comment on the reports, and continue to stand by Rocco Baldelli(notes), a right-handed hitter with similar skills as Francoeur.

    Similar skills?!?!?! Rocco can’t stay healthy and Frenchy can’t do anything else! How is that similar?

    (Well, Frenchy is tied for team lead in stolen bases… with 2)

    Wait a minute, how slow of a team are we that our CATCHER who CAN’T RUN is also tied for the team lead with 2 stolen bases?!?!?

  93. And both of them are ahead of the second place guy by 1 – who’s played only 3 games!

  94. There is another team with as few SBs as we have, but then again they’ve got the 2nd most HRs in the NL… so maybe they don’t need them so much.

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