114 thoughts on “Greg Norton versus Terry Harper”

  1. Check it out:

    Ryan Howard has an RBI in seven consecutive postseason games which gives him the longest streak in a single postseason, the Phillies’ official site reports.

    Howard broke a tie with Ivan Rodriguez (Marlins, 2003), Bernie Williams (Yankees, 1996) and Carlton Fisk (Red Sox, 1975) on Sunday and is one game shy of the all-time mark of eight held by Lou Gehrig (1928-32), who set the mark over multiple postseasons with the Yankees.

    I would like to see the Yankees get beat, but a NY-Philly World Series would be a really good one, I think. The only team left that I don’t dislike organizationally is the Angels, but they’ve got some work to do.

  2. From Keith Law’s AFL run-down this morning:

    Atlanta Braves reliever Lee Hyde was the team’s fourth-round pick in 2006 out of Georgia Tech, but he’s logged just 97 innings since then due to Tommy John surgery and a shoulder injury. The good news: The stuff and approach he showed on Friday night would work in any major-league pen right now. Hyde was 92-94 with a sharp 84-87 mph slider that he needs to show he can bury below the zone. He also flashed a changeup with good tumble. He’s not a big guy and his delivery is compact with good leverage and a lot of deception. Hyde finished strongly at AA this year, and if he’s healthy in March and pitches like this, he should have a legitimate chance to make that club.

    I had never even heard of Lee Hyde. (He’s “Gary Hyde” in B-Ref’s database.) Glad to know about him, though…

  3. Stu,

    One of our regulars knows him. I noticed his minor league stats a year or so ago, put out a “what do you guys know” and somebody knew him fairly well. Whoever thought Hyde was pretty good, but the injury thing had been the problem.

  4. I once gave a Terry Harper baseball card to a neighbor kid so he could attach it to his bike with a clothes pin and make a cool motor sound.

    It didn’t last long.

  5. Seemed like I had more Terry Harper cards than any other Brave, followed by Rafael Rameriez and Pascual Perez…there were never any Murph or Horner cards in those sets….

  6. good, our pen is going to need some fresh arms. Never heard of him also, but the Braves might want to hold off on this kid until Bobby goes. Only pitching 96 innings in 3 years, Bobby could let him top that mark in a single season

  7. I thought this might be unanimous. Harper actually had a big home run for the Braves in the last week of ’81, Norton just sucks!

  8. This seems to be turning into “we hate the guy who played badly for us recently”. Oh well, to each his own I guess

  9. 11—Yeah, it’s amazing that all the worst players the franchise has seen have come during the most successful 2 decades in the franchise’s history.

  10. Harper actually separated his shoulder while waving a runner home. Happened during the 5-game losing streak that followed the 13-game winning streak in 1982.

    He was at bat when the pitcher threw a wild pitch. He waved home the runner on third & went down like he’d been shot with an elephant gun. One of the weirdest injuries I’ve ever seen.

    Norton was a good PH when we were a bad team, was an awful PH when we were a pretty good team. Compared to Harper, I think he hurt us a little more.

  11. It’s hard for someone like me to who was born in 1984 to really know how bad some of these 70s and 80s players were, and alot of the posters on here are even younger than I am. I hear stories from my parents sometimes about guys like Rick Camp, Rafael Ramirez and Pasquel Perez, but my memories of any baseball don’t stretch too far before 1990. By the way, was it ramirez or perez who had a massive butt?

  12. 1984?

    Callow youth. You know not the depths of despair we frequenters of Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium have known.

  13. the big behind was rafael ramirez. it was almost as big as hillary clinton’s but didn’t have a fawning media that only filmed it from flattering angles

  14. 1988 here, I don’t even remember anything about the Braves until the 1994 season with the strike. So the 2006 season was the first season I really experienced without a trip to the playoffs. I felt cold and lost when that happened.

  15. You have no idea of the depths of baseball despair unless you saw some of the teams in the ’70s. I was in high school then, and we used to meet at the stadium in the first five rows on the first base line for a place to meet up before starting an evening’s carousing. It was much less crowded than almost any other place we could meet up. And they’d let you bring in beer!

    My recollection of the 70’s is ten years, ten shortstops, ten failures, but I don’t have the nerve to go to Baseball Reference and spoil the memory.

  16. I take it back.. it was worse than I remember! Mac… How could you leave any 70’s era shortstop off the list. The best performance in the whole decade was an 82 OPS+ by Darrel Chaney in 1976 with 1 homer. My only failure was a failure to recall that Marty Perez got three terrible years in a row, although he did hit eight homers one year, the high water mark for shortstops in the entire decade. Indeed, in that one year Marty hit almost 40 percent of the starting shortstop homers for the whole decade. Craig Robinson, Larvell Blanks, Pepe Frias, Sonny Jackson, and Pat Rockett round out the list. Every one of them a worse player than Greg Norton — except this year.

  17. It’s hard to beat Greg Norton in this poll, since he’s fresh off one of the worst pinch-hitting seasons of all time. I thought it might actually be the worst of all time, but then I did a little research and found out that Mark Sweeney was worse in 2008. Norton hit 162/360/191 in 89 PA, while Sweeney hit 154/272/192 in 92 PA. Their lines are almost identical except for Norton’s 7 extra walks, and somehow both of them kept getting chances deep into September.

    Here are the B-R links:

  18. Mac, you’re depressing me by pulling out the stats for all these players that I used to think were pretty decent. The major reason for this is during the time, guys like Harper were the absolute best we had. I liked Harper when he played and always had hope that he would be a star – just like I did with most other Braves players at that time. As bad as Norton has been this year, there is no way I could vote for Harper as being worse.

  19. The slugging percentages of the mid-eighties Braves are often shockingly low, considering the ballpark. Take 1984 for example, when Murphy hit 36 homers, Claudell hit 17, and the rest of the regulars combined for 38. And that was a pretty good team, 80-82. Harper actually slugged .407 and had 17 homers in the one year he got to play pretty regularly.

  20. the big behind was rafael ramirez. it was almost as big as hillary clinton’s but didn’t have a fawning media that only filmed it from flattering angles

    Stay classy.

  21. Don’t forget Frank LaCorte for the pitchers. He was probably the worst SP in the history of the franchise.

  22. Not many posts today, but some great ones. #18—Raffy had one huge butt, think Oprah. #21—-70’s shortstops—Where to begin. I’d have to say Rockett was the worst (and that’s really saying something) There probably wasn’t a best, but I actually liked Pepe Frias and Sugar Bear Blanks. They were horrible, but then so was the whole team. Still, I was a Braves fan thru and thru.

  23. Please tell me I’m not the only one watching this great Angels/Yankees game. It’s awesome!

  24. I must reiterate that Ryan Howard is massively overrated and that the Phillies need to dump that stiff before he kills any more rallies by hitting home runs.

  25. yep…………nothing worse than a giant 1stbaseman who keeps getting rid of your hard-earned baserunners

  26. Harper’s numbers don’t look too bad, especially for a catcher. He had slightly below league average seasons most years for the Braves.

  27. Angels win! Angels win! in walk off fashion. Yea, I hate the Yankees.

  28. We should trade Jo-Jo Reyes for Ryan Howard. The perfect even up trade…….and pigs are gonna fly out my butt :)

  29. i’m ashamed of myself for letting Pepe Frias slip out of my memory. Rockett, Blanks, Cheney and the rest of the cast are still there. what’s funny is, at the time it seemed perfectly normal for the braves to have players like that………………. lets raise our glasees to the Rod Gilbreths of the world.

  30. Oh, my bad. lol, he was before my time, I guess I got him confused with Brian Harper of the Twins who argued that Lemke was out at the plate.

  31. Mac,

    Tennessee petitioned the NCAA to wear orange jerseys Saturday. The NCAA said it was okay, if Bama agreed. But Bama said no. Why? It would bring back a cool tradition. I don’t see why it matters.

    Pretty lame Bama

  32. In all seriousness, it’s (1). We’re talking about Nick Saban here, he doesn’t do any favors for the opponent even if it doesn’t cost him anything.

  33. Smitty, if that’s true, it’s too bad. I like to see UT in their orange and Bama always in the Crimson.

    Both at the same time? Why not?

    It is a little petty, in my opinion.

  34. start it next yr in Knoxville, they can do what they want then. UT needs to worry a little more about executing and not the color of their jersey. Kiffin may get confused and try another 76yd FG

    Bama has plenty of interest in this game already esp after Kiffin and Thompson’s words about Saban this offseason

  35. Dang it, I missed the end of the Phillies win but can anybody prevent them from repeating? I doubt it. As for Chip…..O man can he stick his foot in his mouth or what!

  36. And how many blown saves have we seen already during this post season? Closers are overrated.

  37. Chips call at the end of Jimmy Rollins game winning hit:

    Ruiz around third, they’re gonna wave him, here’s the throw to the plate, not in time and the Phillies win it in the ninth.

    When in reality, there was no throw home. Ruiz scored the winning run uncontested. The ball was just coming back into the infield to the second baseman who never even made an attempt to get the ball to the catcher because Ruiz was already sliding in to score the winning run.

    Chip made up another phantom call, just like his infamous base hit, caught gaffe.

  38. Greetings from Amsterdam…

    Looks like I missed a pair of exciting games.

    Re: Braves ’70s Infielders
    I always thought that Craig Robinson really looked like a ’70s dude: long hair with bangs, New Wavey glasses, wristbands. And was he ever a lousy hitter.

    For me & my friends, for some reason we found Darrell Chaney especially annoying. He was supposed to be this slick-fielding SS, but when we got him from Cincy he just fit right in with the rest of the crappy Braves infield.

    Then he became a crappy announcer for WTCG.

    Re: Braves ’80s Infielders
    In college, I was the president of the Rafael Ramirez Fan Club. There were 2 of us. He had good range at SS & made some impressive plays, but I can’t tell you how many routine balls he muffed. Really weird player.

    BTW, I gotta say, if we get it, a Yanks-Phils series should be pretty entertaining. Nothing warm & fuzzy about it, but it would be the 2 best lineups going at it.

  39. I think you guys are way too hard on Chip. It wasn’t that bad. There was a throw to the plate, which started at the wall but was not relayed. So, he’s right. The throw to the plate was not in time. It seems like you guys are just looking for reasons to ridicule him.

  40. there was no throw to the plate. that’s crazy talk, rob. any announcer that makes as many mistakes as chip shouldnt be allowed in a booth.

  41. Rob,

    For the most part I agree with you on this, I think he did sound a little silly. From all of the broadcasting classes I have taken, he broke the first rule, don’t let your emotion change your voice to the point where you get out of your range.

    However, a lot of people are taking shots at him on here for everything he does and in reality, who cares? It is harder than it looks to call a game. His calling the game has no effect on me as a person. It really is a small thing to bitch about. He isn’t the worst out there.

    On top of all of that, he is one of our teams announcers and we should live by the “he might be a son of a bitch, but he is our son of a bitch” code.

    I am going to be positive on Chip from here on out.

  42. 70 & 72,
    I agree with you guys about this particular call, but Chip sucks, generally speaking. He’s awful at his job, which he has for no reason other than his last name. (He is hardly the only person in the world for whom that can be said, but he’s certainly the one whose exploits I must endure most frequently.) I will never support him, and for as long as he is working for/with the Braves, I will be hoping and calling for his firing.

  43. Allow me to agree with the “I’m not a fan of Chip Caray by any means, but come on…it wasn’t that bad” folks. On his list of stupidest and most groan-inducing things he’s ever said/done on a broadcast, I’m pretty sure that doesn’t even make the Top 100, and I would think that if pretty much anybody else had made the exact same call, we would either be ignoring it altogether or at the very least cutting a little bit of slack, depending on who it was. I frankly didn’t even notice it until I came on here this morning and saw this thread.

    On the other hand, I will say that it does illustrate how sloppy Chip is when compared to other national baseball announcers. For instance, I have a tough time seeing Chip’s playoff counterpart Joe Buck, who I loathe and who most of the time doesn’t even seem to care about the game he’s announcing, making that mistake.

    But in the grand scheme of things, it’s really not that big of a deal.

  44. How is A.J. Ogilvy on the all SEC team over Wayne Chism? It isn’t because he is a better basketball player, he clearly isn’t.

  45. Chip can be insufferable, but that’s not a bad call at all. He probably expected a relay throw that just never came. When the game-winning run is circling third and the outfielder throws it, of course that’s where you think the ball is headed.

  46. Smitty,
    I don’t root for Chip to fail. I desparately want him to get better at his job. But if it doesn’t happen—and I have no reason to believe it will—I want his actions (incredibly substandard job performance) to have appropriate consequences (termination).

    As for Ogilvy, he’s definitely had his worst games against UT. But he’s a good player, and there’s no doubt that most coaches in the country would rather have him than Chism.

    FWIW, Ogilvy’s also the only one of the two who’ll be a first-round NBA draft pick.

  47. Well, your question piqued my curiosity, Smitty, so I checked the stats. Ogilvy is quite obviously the better player.

    Traditional stats:

    MPG – Chism 25.7; Ogilvy 27.6
    PPG (Shooting %) – Chism 13.7 (46.6%); Ogilvy 15.4 (54.3%)
    RPG – Chism 8.0; Ogilvy 7.1

    MPG – Chism 22.9; Ogilvy 26.4
    PPG (Shooting %) – Chism 9.9 (47%); Ogilvy 17.0 (58.8%)
    RPG – Chism 5.8; Ogilvy 6.7

    Advanced (Ken Pomeroy) stats:

    eFG% Chism 52.4; Ogilvy 55.5
    TS% – Chism 55.9; Ogilvy 60.0
    OR% – Chism 11.5; Ogilvy 8.1
    DR% – Chism 23.2; Ogilvy 21.1
    ARate – Chism 9.4; Ogilvy 11.4
    TORate – Chism 17.2; Ogilvy 20.6
    Blk% – Chism 4.3; Ogilvy 6.3
    Stl% – Chism 1.7; Ogilvy 1.8
    FC/40 – Chism 4.5; Ogilvy 3.9
    FD/40 – Chism 5.0; Ogilvy 7.0
    FTRate – Chism 37.9; Ogilvy 70.0

    eFG% Chism 51.9; Ogilvy 58.8
    TS% – Chism 52.7; Ogilvy 64.1
    OR% – Chism 8.5; Ogilvy 9.4
    DR% – Chism 18.8; Ogilvy 19.7
    ARate – Chism 9.1; Ogilvy 10.1
    TORate – Chism 13.2; Ogilvy 18.6
    Blk% – Chism 6.6; Ogilvy 5.5
    Stl% – Chism 2.2; Ogilvy 1.4
    FC/40 – Chism 5.2; Ogilvy 4.6
    FD/40 – Chism 4.0; Ogilvy 7.5
    FTRate – Chism 30.4; Ogilvy 67.0

    So, that’s why Ogilvy is pre-season All-SEC over Chism.

  48. Stu, I didn’t totally agree with your first Chip comment — “I will never support him, and for as long as he is working for/with the Braves, I will be hoping and calling for his firing.”

    But then I read your clarification: “I desparately want him to get better at his job. But if it doesn’t happen—and I have no reason to believe it will—I want his actions (incredibly substandard job performance) to have appropriate consequences (termination).”

    That’s the way I feel. I want him to get better, but he just hasn’t. At all. And if he’s going to suck, I’d rather he not get paid to call the plays for my team.

  49. answer…….the two best reasons to watch the playoffs with the sound off……………Q..who are Chip Carey and Tim mcCarver?

  50. just wondering why UT fans think they should be allowed to wear home jerseys at Bama? thats why you have home/away jerseys, it doenst really matter either though

  51. As a UT, it’s not that I think we should be allowed to (I could really care less), it’s just that UT asked and received permission from the NCAA but was refused by Bama (which is fine too they have that right). I think UT just wanted to bring back some tradition, but really the whole thing is kind of silly.

  52. SEC Hoops
    I noticed the other day a pretty interesting thing going on at MSG on Dec. 9. They’re calling it the SEC/Big East Challenge (or some such thing) and it’s a hoops doubleheader:

    Georgia vs. St. John’s
    Kentucky vs. UConn

    I’ll probably be among a dozen or so other UGA people there. And hard as it is to do, I’m guessing I’ll root for Kentucky. (Did I just say that?)

    Eden Hotel in Rembrandtplein, right on the Amstel River.

  53. The SEC/Big East Challenge is a thing they’ve been doing for a few years, now—I think this is the third year. They match up two teams from each conference. Last year, we had VU vs. USF and UT vs. Marquette here in Nashville.

    Please don’t root for UK, ububba. Please?

  54. Sorry, I’m with ububba. I hate UK with the fire of a thousand suns but the SEC needs all the marquee wins we can get.

  55. Meanwhile back in the realm of Braves’ discussion:

    Terry Harper – terrible player, but he was on some terrible teams, and you were actually pleased when he did something good. Kind of like you feel when your incontinent chihuahua manages to do his business outside instead of on your Persian rug (or cat, for that matter). So Harper’s suckiness was of no moment.

    Greg Norton, bless his heart, on the other hand, was charged with important ABs, and proceeded to do terrible harm to a team that had potential. For that reason, I have to cast a vote for Norton. (Although, I will say, I do not know the man personally, and I do not wish any ill towards him, and am sure he’s a likeable enough fellow who would be fun to have a beer or two with…he just picked a REALLY bad year to have a really bad year.)

    EDIT to add: I wonder if I can name this reasoning the Harper Factor? In that a bad player on those crummy 70’s/ mid-late 80’s teams loses votes to a player who stunk it up for a good team.

  56. I can’t root for UConn. I’ve been away from Kentucky people for awhile now, but UConn fans are kinda insufferable like that.

    Every call against them is a conspiracy. There’s some divine right that allows them to win. I mean, they’re both successful criminal organizations & good for them, but have a little grace, huh?

    Also, I’m looking forward to seeing that John Wall kid play again. Can’t stand Calipari or the Big Blue, but that kid’s pretty amazing.

  57. And to think I pull unflinchingly for all SEC teams when they’re not playing us. (Well, except for Urban’s team.)

    Calipari is after some NYC kids, I hear. Do you follow the local high school scene, ububba?

  58. sansho’s been gone since August 1st. I was asking about him a while ago—Remy, IIRC, first noticed his absence—but nobody knew anything.

  59. Stu

    Chism is a much better defensive player and look at the easy comparison, head to head

    Last Season Chism outscored Ogilvy 28-18 and out rebounded him 9-4. The year before, Chism outscored Ogilvy 22-16 and out rebounded him 22-8.

  60. Smitty,
    He’s not a much better defensive player, as the stats above show. He’s (maybe) a better rebounder, slightly less turnover-prone, and that’s it.

    Mike Redmond, in 51 career PA (most against any single opponent), has a .471 / .604 / 1.075 line against Tom Glavine. But you should probably look at each guy’s overall body of work to figure out which one is better.

  61. Anybody know what’s up with Jason Heyward? He left an AFL game in the 3rd inning a few days ago and hasn’t been back in the lineup. Just wondering if anyone’s heard any news.

  62. i was thinking about something the other day….the braves should trade david ross. he is signed for ridiculously cheap and, considering the numbers he has put up, would be the definition of selling high. i mean, he’d probably be a starting catcher for at least 10 teams. when it’s all said and done, i think the braves will be doing some business with the brew crew. maybe not with david ross in mind, but with someone.

  63. So how many times is A-Rod going to pad his stats after the game is in hand? Show off. Trying to catch Howards RBI per game total.

  64. So we are left to root for the Yankees? I’m gonna go climb the stairs up to the sixth floor observatory and jump……

    Just kidding, but no, I really don’t care who wins or loses at this point. However, if the Phillies repeat it will have an impact on how our front office carries on their business during this upcoming off season. As in everybody will know that we are playing for a wild card berth in 2010.

    As I have reiterated before, Frank Wren does not inspire confidence in my fandom when it comes to my Braves. Almost everybody approved of the signing of Derek Lowe including myself. But I knew he was being overpaid and laughed out loud when Wren referred to Lowe as an “ACE”. Good pitcher, yes. Top of the line, NO.

    Initially, the Vazquez trade didn’t inspire me because I had always viewed him as an underachiever. Well, he pitched like an ACE this season and I have no complaints with the trade.

    Kawakami? Please, gimme a break. Most Japanese pitchers are very overrated not to mention the stark differences between baseball in Japan and here in north America. Only time will tell if Kawakami can develop the stamina to stay in a big league rotation for the duration of the 162 game grind.

    All in all, Wren spent 33 million on three starting pitchers for the 2009 season. Which wouldn’t normally be an issue with me as I know quality pitching is the number one priority. I’ll turn a blind eye to the 13 million spent on Chipper even though it wasn’t a good investment.

    It’s just that Wren stuck all his eggs in one basket and we now know his efforts were wasted due to the continuing disaster in the Braves outfield. Wren tried to fix the flaws by acquiring Mclouth and LaRoche while dumping Frenchy but it was too late, the damage had already been done.

    Pitching is great but it cannot carry a team by itself. Defense, offense and a ground game are necessary components as we can see evidenced in the playoffs right now. Wren needs to address these problems if our Braves are to compete in 2010.

    By the way, Randy Wolf, Adam Dunn, Braden Looper, Bobby Abreu, Orlando Hudson, Carl Pavano and Juan Rivera all made just under 31 million combined this year after signing as free agents this past off season. Derek Lowe, Kenshin Kawakami and Chipper Jones were paid 34.6 million.

    Less is more as we can clearly see:

    Randy Wolf: 11-7 3.23 ERA 5 Mill.

    Braden Looper: 14-7 5.22 ERA 4.75 M

    Adam Dunn: 38 HR’s, 105 RBI, 8 M

    Orlando Hudson: 9 HR’s, 62 RBI, .283 BA, 3.38 M

    Carl Pavano: 14-12 5.12 ERA, 1.5 M

    Juan Rivera: 25 HR’s, 88 RBI, .287 BA, 3.25 M

    Bobby Abreu: 15 HR’s , 103 RBI, 30 stolen bases, .293 BA, 5 M

  65. @100, ryan c, I was thinking the same thing when I read about the lack of catchers for some teams (Brewers…)! He might be the most valuable trading chip for the Braves apart from the starting pitchers.

  66. #105, Fangraphs rate Chipper’s 2009 as being worth $12.7m. That $300k drop in performance really cost us.

    In other news, the Wilpons actually profited from Madoff to the tune of $48m. Unfortunately for them, that money is expected to be recovered.

  67. NAHH, just trade David Ross for Dan Uggla, and Jo-Jo Reyes for Prince Fielder, then watch as our Braves get blasted out of the 2010 playoffs faster than you can say gitty up!

    Then maybe most of the fan base can wake up, smell the coffee and realize that something isn’t quit right :)

  68. 108, Chew on this:

    100, the number of quality starts our Braves produced. 58, the number of stolen bases (next to last, only the Cubbies were slower). 52, the number of one run games played (27-25 record).

    It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the rest.

    IF, and I said IF our Braves would have had any semblance of a running game……they would have been in the playoffs.

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