I have better journalistic standards than that

The official position of this blog is that the reported offer the Braves made to Mike Lowell was just made up. I could make things up too if I liked. It’s not hard.

Open thread.

135 thoughts on “I have better journalistic standards than that”

  1. Yeah that offer to Lowell was a crock. I’m not sure I’m buying the idea that the Braves have lots of new money to spend either.

  2. Rivera Wants Four Years
    Why is that three-year, $45MM offer to Mariano Rivera from the Yankees still on the table? According to Ken Rosenthal, it’s because Rivera wants four guaranteed years. He’s looking at the contracts of Jorge Posada, Billy Wagner, and even Alex Rodriguez in demanding to be paid through his age 41 season. As I said before, I think it’s time for the Yankees to go to Plan B.

  3. Ron, the Braves have some money to spend, not a ton, but some – so they are going to be strategic with it and Wren will make moves that make a modicum of sense.

    Signing Lowell makes no sense.

  4. Braves appear to be flush with cash?
    The Braves appear to have plenty of money to spend this shopping season. Team owner Liberty Media revealed in a financial report filed this week that the Braves had robust revenue and cash flow last season. And team CEO Terry McGuirk said the Braves were profitable and will spend “many millions more” on next year’s player payroll. This is a different tune coming from an organization that has cited financial pressures in unloading a series of high-profile players in recent years. Now, with baseball’s shopping season officially under way and McGuirk still maintaining the Braves haven’t set a 2008 payroll budget, comes the true test of the new tune vs. the old refrain. — Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  5. Team owner Liberty Media revealed in a financial report filed this week that the Braves had robust revenue and cash flow last season.

    Which was the same as every season as far as attendance, TV contracts, etc… So remind me again why we never sign anyone on the open market and let almost all of our free agents leave often times without offering arbitration?

  6. I would hope that they would pile all those extra millions into fielding a strong rotation. There is enough offense there now, and that is needed is a very strong rotation.

  7. I agree with Justin. Pitching, pitching and more pitching. Bring in 40 guys to fight for the bottome 2 spots. And send the rest to the minors in case something happens. Keep a good mix of old (Smoltz, Glavine, Hampton) middle age (Hudson) and young guys (Reyes, James, the guy from the Tigers, Bennet, etc). The offense is stacked, even w/ no CF. Bring someone in for D, and if you have to use Willie. Don’t worry about offense from CF. Chip, Tex, Jeff, Diaz, McCann, Escobar, Johnson are alot of offense to begin with.

  8. You would think that when making up rumors one would be smart enough to make them believable. Where the heck would the Braves put Lowell? That is so stupid.
    The article about the braves having cash gives no indication that it will be a large amount. There is just simply a statement that Atl will spend many millions more. Well many millions could be 5 million and all that will get you is Ramon Castro.

  9. Boras needs a win right about now. Let’s pursue an extension for Teix. Can’t spend the money better anywhere else.

  10. I’m pulling for ARod to re-up with the Yanks. If that happens Boras’ position will have been dealt a bit of a set-back, so I hope he’ll be more pliable when the Teixiera deal comes due.

  11. “Speculation is growing that the Braves might consider bringing Andruw Jones back.”

    JUST RELEASED BY MLB TRADE RUMORS…

  12. continuing from the previous.

    I ewmwmber seeing Prefontaine run about 13:06 on 3 miles (on TV) which would project arond 27 over 6. The world class guys are a little better than that now. However, Prefontaine still holds a lot of “english system” middle distance records because now almost nothing is ever run but metric.

    I don’t know about the training stuff. I am sure he went at it hard on the track, but off the track he was, to say the least, not nearly the ascetic of a Lance Armstrong. In other words, Prefontaine like a good (and I do mean good) party.

  13. Speculation is growing that the Braves might consider bringing Andruw Jones back.

    Buster Olney talked about how the Braves may offer Andruw Jones arbitration after all. Dear God, have mercy!

  14. “Speculation is growing that the Braves might consider bringing Andruw Jones back.”

    JUST RELEASED BY MLB TRADE RUMORS…

    Obviously they are just stringing me along at this point. Those bastards will do anything to pull my focus off of college football.

  15. I’m all for offering and Andruw accepting arbitration, if the money is there. Everyone says we need defense in cf, why not get the best while adding some more offensive punch. We get Glavine and Andruw for one year and combined with Hampton and after next year that’s ~$38 million off the books to sign Tex and another pitcher. It gives Schaeffer a full year to know he won’t be called up and get ready for 2009.

  16. Isn’t it clear that Wren has talked Chipper into moving to 1B and has a deal worked out with the Yankees so that after signing Lowell he will send Tex to NY for Kennedy, Hughes and Cabrera?

  17. I can’t believe that Wren is blowing smoke when he makes a public statement about spending “many millions more.” He will look like an idiot now if they don’t do anything. I think they will spend some money on players but they might also choose to spend it on the minor league/player development system. In the long run, that might be a better way to spend it.

  18. Does Andruw want to come back, or has the bridge been burned?

    Think he’d listen to TP (or anybody) after last year’s dismal performance?

    Hey, Andruw! Homers to right count just as much as those to left. Dude!

  19. And, Al-Jazeera has better journalistic standards than that.

    Mike Lowell to the Braves …

    Really like Lowell, but please.

  20. And hits to left count just as much as ones to right for Andruw Jones. Somebody tell Joe Simpson. He seems to believe that hits to the opposite field are worth double or something.

    I don’t think I can stomach another season of Andruw Jones taking a huge cut of the payroll and batting around .220 while striking out a ton and hitting into a lot of double plays.

  21. I’m a little concerned about the possibility of brining back Glavine and Andruw. One of the things that has kept the Braves competitive for so many years is that, other than utility infielders, they don’t let nostalgia get in the way of letting guy who is past his prime go. You can’t bring back 1998. On the other hand, what better options are available? As long as it is only a 1-year deal for both of them, I am OK with it.

  22. Is anyone on here going to be able to or planning to participate in the online chat today with Frank Wren at 3:00? I have to work and can not participate but I am hoping some of you guys will be logged in and pose some good questions for Big Bird.

  23. Peavy won the CYA, unanimously. Yeah, the Padres are going to get right on trading him. Sheesh. What’s kind of interesting is that Webb was a nearly-unanimous second choice, 31 of 32 second-place votes.

  24. SS Yunel
    2b Johnson
    3b Chipper
    1b Tex
    RF Francouer
    C McCann
    LF Diaz
    CF Andruw

    I could live with that…

  25. I want Andruw in center, but I’ll believe it’s possible when hell freezes over or ARod resigns with the Yankees.

  26. Mark Gordon @27
    I couldn’t live with that lineup. The number 8 hitter there doesn’t get on base enough to clear the pitcher. The last thing I want to see next season is a pitcher leading off the inning twice per game!

  27. frank wren is chatting live on braves.com right now. someone asked him if there was any truth to the lowell rumors. His response:

    frankwren: None at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. If the cash is there, then bring Andruw back for a year. Where else will we be able to have someone like him in centerfield for a year and give our prospects time to get ready? Anyone else near his ability would be a multi-year deal and that’s not something we’re interested in at all. It would sure be better than any Coco Crisp or Willie Harris experiment.

  29. MLB announced they made 6.075 billion dollars of revenue this past year. My question is how does that get split up? How much goes the owners of the franchises, and then how much of that goes into improving the product on the field, as opposed to what goes into the owner’s pockets?

  30. Something like this:

    2.5 Billion – Yankees
    2 Billion – Red Sox
    .5 Billion – Cubs
    .
    .
    .
    BBQ Mutton – Kansas City

  31. As much as I was happy to see Andruw go, I would only want to see him back if Bobby SWORE he wouldn’t bat him above 8th.

    But since I know this won’t happen, I would be happy to see mr. .220 take his fleet of cars elsewhere.

  32. I dunno, if Andruw replays last year, we’re almost better putting Willie in CF and batting him eighth and not expecting too much.

    At least he gets on base and is less likely to hit into DPs.

    More I think about it, the more vivid the horror of Andruw’s most recent performance becomes. He flat killed us.

    Did any of Andruw’s homers matter last year?

    Give me speed and energy. Too late, but we might have left Renteria at SS and moved Yunel to 2B with Kelly in CF?

  33. R U Serious Keith?

    He didnt’ answer any of mine either, But I did ask an important one: “Could you beat up Dave O’Brien?”

    I guess that means no. We have a pussy GM.

  34. I can’t see Andruw not finding some team who will give him a multi-year deal in the $16-17 million/year range. He isn’t coming back.

  35. I asked some questions too and Wren didn’t respond/answer any of them.

    Yet one single person got three of his/her questions answer by Wren. Unfair.

  36. I think I would rather put Andruw in center, bat him 8th, and not expect too much, than to put Willie in center, bat him 8th, and not expect too much.

    But I agree (1) it doesn’t make sense to bat Andruw higher than 8th, and (2) I know Bobby will never bat him 8th, and (3) probably some one prices us out of the Andruw market anyway.

    I just think it’s cool we have a lineup where an Andruw Jones could be batting 8th. And only Chipper (and maybe Diaz) are past their prime. (not counting Andruw)

  37. Chipper is past his prime, but doesnt it seem like he’s getting better offensively every year? I mean he hit .340 last year, if only he could play 160 games in one season

  38. Of course, if Chipper played 160 games, he might not hit .340. Seems like missing some games might improve your performance in that you are stronger at teh end of the season.

  39. Andruw had a bad year. He probably won’t ever challenge for a batting title.

    That said, even if he has lost a step or two in the field, he is still one of the two or three best defensive outfielders in the major leagues. I don’t understand why he attracts so much anger. I wish we’d resign him three or four more years.

  40. We can do a whole lot worse than a guy who will bat .255, hit 30+ homers, drive in 90+, and play gold glove defense. We are comparing that to Willie Harris? If Liberty has the cash, why the heck not? Wren has already said that there wouldn’t be any pitching acquisitions beyond Glavine anyway, so it’s not like the money would be spent there. I would def be OK with arbitration and 1 more year of Andruw, though I’m positive it’s never going to happen.

  41. If Liberty has the cash, why the heck not?

    My thoughts exactly.

    I still doubt that some other team won’t offer something more attractive, though.

  42. Maybe Andruw and the Braves will kiss and make up like A-Rod has with the Yankees. Personally I was already past it. I was ok with him leaving. It will be interesting to see how things shake out but I think that A-Rod was Boras’ SECOND miscalculation. His first was asking 20 million for an outfielder coming off of one of his worst seasons.
    All that being said I seriously doubt that the Braves will even make an offer.

  43. Thank You Aram and Stu. Who would we get that is better? Please don’t tell me with a straight face that Willie Harris is a better option.

  44. I think I would rather put Willie in center, bat in 8th, and not expect too much …..AND have $16 million to spend on another pitcher.

    (As much as I liked Andruw in the past, Andrew’s performance batting clean-up .. and Bobby leaving him there for too long .. was certainly as responsible for us missing the play-offs as any one other factor.)

  45. Name the free agent pitcher worth spending that money on. We could trade for a top line starter, but that wouldn’t cost a lot of money in 08.

  46. The question is how much it would take to get Andruw. I would not be averse to resigning him if it wasn’t going to preclude the team from making other moves. But given the prospects in the minors, it doesn’t seem like a shrewd investment to pay a guy 16 mm a year, hoping that last year was an aberration. Of course, the market might not be as good for Andruw as we think so that’s a different story. But my guess is the Braves are done with him unless they can really get a bargain ($13 mm?). The problem is, much of his value is his defense but no one pays that much just for defense. Even at his best, he is a very flawed offensive player.

  47. Marc, the team can offer him arbitration if it has the cash to spare. That way, you get a sandwich pick if someone else signs him, and if he accepts, it’s only for a year. If that money is available, it seems like a no-brainer to me.

  48. For the 16 million you spend on Andruw Jones, you may be able to get both Glavine and Carlos Silva.

    People swore here all throughout the early part of the season that Andruw Jones “can’t possibly” be that bad all season. But he was. What if he’s that bad again next year? It’s not impossible.

  49. Exactly, Stu. I completely agree. No way we should try to resign the guy to a multi-year contract, but arbitration seems like a wise thing to do in my mind, again providing Liberty is OK with the budget rising.

  50. Dan,

    Silva and Glavine combined for 22 win shares (11 each) last season. Andruw had 16. And that’s with Glavine and Silva playing as well as they can with Andruw playing as poorly as he can. Also, Glavine is a non-issue. It’s a given that he’s re-signing.

  51. When Andruw’s hitting .222 in the 4th spot for the Nats next year, many on this board will feel a lot better about things. ;-)

  52. Sure, it’s not impossible Andruw would be as bad as this past season, but it’s also not impossible that he’d have a similar season to 2006.

  53. Well, I have come in here many times and admitted when I was wrong. If Andruw goes nuts and has a big 2008, in Atlanta or elsewhere, I will be the first one to admit my incorrect stance.

    But I feel pretty strongly that I would like to see someone else in Center next year.

  54. It’s also possible—very possible, I believe—that even 2007 Andruw would be more valuable than anything else on which we’d spend that money (if it’s there).

  55. I’m just considering the alternatives: Willie Harris, giving up talent for Mark Kotsay, giving up talent for Chone Figgins, giving up talent for Coco Crisp, giving up talent for David Dejesus (although that would make for a season of Big Lebowski jokes, which almost makes it worth it.)

    It’d be one thing if we could get Dejesus for Thorman and a bullpen arm, but I’m not sure we could. If it means giving up a Lillibridge, I’d just as soon pay the $13 mil for Andruw in arbitration (assuming no other team comes with a multiyear offer, but like Stu, I think some team definitely will.)

  56. Yeah, but if it means not having to give up any prospects and we have the money to spend. I think we could do a lot worse than to spend that money on Andruw. Wren has already said that if we get Glavine he will be the only SP we get.

  57. Do you really think Andruw will hit .222 next year? He’s a career .250-.260 hitter so chances are he’s gonna be .255 35hrs and 100+ rbi’s next year.

  58. Plus, I asked Frank like 7 times today if offering Andruw arbitration was a possibility and he didnt answer… obviously he’s hiding something.

  59. I would rather see them stick Lillibridge in center than Harris or Figgins. I definitely wouldn’t pay Andruw more than he made last year, and wouldn’t give up a whole hell of a lot for DeJesus or Kotsay. It sure seems like whatever Wren does in center is a gamble.

  60. Arbitration means a raise. It ALWAYS means a raise.

    We won’t pay Andruw Jones 13 mill if we go to arbitration.

  61. Alex, you’ve always wanted to get rid of Andruw.

    Quick & Dirty Andruw projection for 2008:

    .242/.334/.479, 35 HR

    That’s a very simple (“Favorite Toy”) projection. I don’t really believe it; I think he’ll either rebound to his usual .265 range or continue to suck.

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with his pitch recognition; he just wasn’t able to hit the balls with his usual authority. Maybe he was hurt, maybe he’s done. I don’t know. I think that the upside is worth the chance of a one-year contract.

  62. Andruw doesn’t hustle and has completely lost his ability to locate pitches.

    Ah, the old Andruw doesn’t hustle meme. How many times did he lay out his body or slam into the CF wall this year? How many games did he miss after receiving cortisone shots in his elbow? You think Chipper Jones’ pansy ass would’ve played through that?

  63. I don’t think I can stomach another season of Andruw Jones taking a huge cut of the payroll and batting around .220 while striking out a ton and hitting into a lot of double plays.

    How about Andruw Jones hitting .260-270, 30-40 HRs, slugging .550 or therabouts, striking out a ton and hitting into a lot of double plays? For an arb offer, if the team has the payroll to do it and pay Tex and a pitcher? You’d have to be a moron not to. He’s certainly a better option on a one-year arb deal than Willie Harris.

  64. Thank you Jeremy for everything you said (except the Chipper Jones line – I’ll never hate on Chipper after he took less money to stay in Atl). I never bought the Andruw doesn’t hustle jive either. The guy plays 155+ games every year and dives all over the field, and unlike a lot of other outfielders, his dives are not solely for style points.

  65. Well I think it’s obvious that even Bad Andruw would be a better player than Willie Harris, in a vaccuum.

    The only way you would put Willie Harris out there, is with eyes toward extending Tex. Can bringing Andruw back next year, for just one year, have an adverse effect on our ability to sign Tex? I think it can.

    That said. I’d negotiate with Andruw. Try to get him for what I paid last year, or slightly less.

    I’d also offer arbitration, and pray he didn’t accept. If he did accept, I’d try to negotiate a salary between his figure and my own.

    My dream solution would be to trade for a centerfielder who is neither Andruw Jones nor Willie Harris. But I don’t know who’s available and for how much and what I’m willing to part with.

    Without looking at numbers, my instinct tells me I’d part with Chuck James, Brent Lillibridge, and Joey Devine for 2 years of Carl Crawford (or however many years he’s signed for.) But that’s just speculating..

  66. Andruw doesn’t hustle on plenty of infield ground balls, but I tend to doubt that it’s ever cost us a game, or even an inning. I’d say the same thing about Chipper.

    I’m one who puts a lot of stock in guys who play every day. I always give it up to Andruw for that.

  67. Ububba – This could just be my perception, but it seems that most players making 10+ million don’t hustle on ground balls. Some do, but most don’t. My main beef with Andruw is not lack of hustle, but rather that he seems so stubborn in his refusal to make adjustments at the plate quickly enough (if at all).

  68. Aram,
    The guy has been hot and cold his whole career. He may be the streakiest player I’ve ever seen. He is what he is (or he was what he was).

    Last year notwithstanding, his overall contributions have been way on the plus side.

    Have no idea if it’s even possible—SI had Andruw going to the Dodgers—but count me as saying he’s worth it on the arb gamble.

  69. Breaking News:

    Barry Bonds indicted on ferderal perjury and obstruction of justice charges….

    SWEET

  70. If Coop and I ever met I think we would be fast friends.

    An Andruw resign would have me re-upping on MLB.TV and Extra Innings the next minute. Right now I’m not so sure I can’t do without one or the other.

  71. I like that Wren chat. It felt like he’s typing the answers himself and not answering vocally for someone else to type. He also gave firm answers dispelling rumors.

    I do wonder what short term CF solutions he has in mind. I can’t think of many beyond signing Andruw to a one year deal. Any other FA is going to want something long term, and I can’t think of any 6th year CFs on the trade market.

  72. Mac, a one year arb offer on Andruw? He probably ‘loses’ arb or negotiates a deal between for 14.5 mil? Is .242/.334/.479, 35 HR and defense worth that?

  73. “Ah, the old Andruw doesn’t hustle meme. How many times did he lay out his body or slam into the CF wall this year? How many games did he miss after receiving cortisone shots in his elbow? You think Chipper Jones’ pansy ass would’ve played through that?”

    Apparently the “Andruw doesn’t hustle” argument isn’t popular, but I’m sticking to it. The man runs like he has sandbags around his neck. The article from ESPN linked here a few weeks ago had a quote that said it best:

    “He has so much ability, it’s ridiculous,” a National League official said. “That’s what he’s relied on all these years. But now he has to kick in the afterburners, and it’s just not happening.”

    Is he better than our FA options? Arguably. Is he worth $13 million +? My thought is no.

  74. Is he better than our FA options? Arguably. Is he worth $13 million +? My thought is no.

    The basis for those in favor of Andruw accepting arbitration for one year is this report of Liberty having more money to spend. Where else would you like to see the money spent? Andruw on a 1 year deal at ~$13M is much better than committing a multi year contract to a FA CF’er or SP, something that will hamstring our ability to re-sign Tex next offseason.

  75. My dream solution would be to trade for a centerfielder who is neither Andruw Jones nor Willie Harris. But I don’t know who’s available and for how much and what I’m willing to part with.

    Without looking at numbers, my instinct tells me I’d part with Chuck James, Brent Lillibridge, and Joey Devine for 2 years of Carl Crawford (or however many years he’s signed for.) But that’s just speculating..

    If you had the money to sign Andruw, pay Tex and bring in a pitcher it would be massively irresponsible of you to trade talent for Crawford or anyone else. James, Lillibridge and Devine are far more valuable than however many million Andruw would make in arb assuming the Braves have those millions to spend. You ONLY spend prospects when you don’t have another choice. If the Braves have $14 mil to pay for one more year of Andruw, they have another choice.

  76. “The basis for those in favor of Andruw accepting arbitration for one year is this report of Liberty having more money to spend. Where else would you like to see the money spent? Andruw on a 1 year deal at ~$13M is much better than committing a multi year contract to a FA CF’er or SP, something that will hamstring our ability to re-sign Tex next offseason.”

    I’m not optimistic about resigning Tex personally. I was still under the impression we were looking for another starter in addition to Glavine, but reports today say we’d stop there.

    Something doesn’t add up. If Liberty has more money to throw around, why did we release Renteria, who was still a bargain for his production (and half of Mr. .222)

  77. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with his pitch recognition; he just wasn’t able to hit the balls with his usual authority. Maybe he was hurt, maybe he’s done. I don’t know. I think that the upside is worth the chance of a one-year contract.”

    As you said, it’s hard to say what specific thing affected his game last year, but watching him swing through lots of breaking pitches and high fastballs got very frustrating. I’ll be very interested to see what he does next season.

  78. From a link on Rob Neyer’s blog it shows that Tim Hudson faced the toughest opponents in the NL. The OPS of his opponents was 0.754
    Interesting.

  79. According to DOB on his blog, he says that the Braves are NOT talking to Andruw about coming back, and have no plans to.

  80. It’s really not a huge financial commitment to keep ‘Drwu for 1 more year for around $13 mill. Arb.

    That being said, I can live w/ it if Bobby hits him 8th or no higher than 7th.

  81. They didn’t “release” Renteria. They traded him for two good prospects, one of whom is probably going to wind up in the rotation at some point in 2008.

  82. Interesting point re: Bonds…

    “Are there any surprises in the indictment?
    Most of the material in the indictment is familiar to anyone who has followed the BALCO investigation, but there is one surprise. The surprise is that, according to the indictment, during the criminal investigation evidence was obtained, including positive tests for steroids and other performance-enhancing substances for Bonds and other professional athletes. When asked about it in front of the grand jury, Bonds denied a positive test. It will be one of the most difficult charges for Bonds to deny. He will be scientifically connected to a positive test with DNA and other techniques.”
    (from ESPN)

    Finally, the proof is in the pudding…

  83. “Released” was the wrong word. I just meant that money was a factor in letting Renteria go.

  84. Seems like CF will either be Andruw on an Arb contract, which I think includes the player’s previous three years (two of which Andruw was in the MVP argument); Lillibridge or Schaefer (my money’s on Schaefer, with Lillibridge as super-util, replacing Orr); a trade (DeJesus, Crisp, Damon, Gathright, other); or an FA falling through the cracks. I think the first two are the most likely options. Andruw at 15 mil-ish, or Schafer at 330,000 with 14.5 mil to throw at contacts for two of the best relievers available?

    Also: 9-10 mil per year on a starter: Doesn’t Clement make more sense than Glavine? Wish Tommy would hang it up.

  85. BPro announced their best and worst 2007 minor league baserunners today. Number one was a 24-year-old who played at low- and high-A in the Astros organization. Number two was Gorkys Hernandez.

    Lillibridge was tenth.

    Next to last was Moneyball hero Jeremy Brown. He’s 27 now. The A’s traded for Jason freaking Kendall rather than give this guy a shot. How’s the hagiography career going, Michael Lewis?

  86. The upside for Clement is a lot higher than for Glavine, and he’s about a decade younger. On the other hand, he’s always been injury-prone. It’s not clear that either is really a good option, but there aren’t many options. And considering the Braves’ rather entitled stance that they won’t sign anyone who won’t give them a discount, Glavine’s going to be the guy.

  87. @37

    hankonly Says:
    Did any of Andruw’s homers matter last year?

    He did hit that game-winner April 29th against the Phillies I believe.

    Other than that, I don’t think so.

  88. interesting…

    qooraf91: Are we going to get any pitchers other than Glavine?

    Wren: If we are able to sign Tom, we would have eight starting pitchers for five spots and would look to improve other areas of our club.

    chip4prez: Who impressed you and Bobby Cox most in Arizona? Any surprises?

    Wren: Charlie Morton threw extremely well with his five inning no-no, and Jordan Schafer played very well in center field. Brandon Hicks at shortstop and J.C. Holt at second base both played well. It was a good trip overall.

  89. Wren said Thursday afternoon that there are “a couple” of current trade possibilities that would allow him to bring a new center fielder to the Braves organization. It appears at least two of his options involve younger players who wouldn’t provide much of an impact on the team’s payroll.

    “In the trade possibilities that we have right now, one guy, I don’t know if I’d classify him as a veteran, but he’s been around for a few years at the Major League level,” Wren said. “Another one is young player who doesn’t have a lot of Major League time but has some Major League time.”

  90. FWIW, the 4-6 Arizona Wildcats have #2 Oregon on the ropes. It could be an Oklahoma-LSU championship game (a lot has to happen still).

    Anyway, at #119, I’m guessing one of those guys is Dejesus? I think the Braves add an outfielder and continue to shore up the bullpen, but most of the changes could, unfortunately and necessarily, be as cosmetic as they are meaningful. I guess we are to hope either Hampton or Glavine provide decent innings next year, and that James matures a bit into a genuine #3 starter. Considering the lack of a #5 and Smoltz’ age, that’s a lot of question marks for the rotation. A lot.

  91. I just watched the second half of the Oregon game–without our own Dennis Dixon the Ducks really looked bad. A number 2 ranked team should not be that bad because it loses is best player. Arizona looked no better–of course Lou Holtz will probably sing the praises of the Pac 10 on Saturday….

  92. Kind of a flukey game, really. If you’re Oregon, you just gotta throw your hands up.

    Your best player gets hurt in the first quarter, his replacement throws an INT for a TD, Arizona returns a punt for a TD. The big break (a late Arizona fumble) gets overturned by replay. Not your night.

    Even Dixon’s INT should’ve been caught for a TD. Instead, it bounced off the reciever & the DB returns it half the field.

    Dixon’s fun to watch. Wish he’d stayed in there. As much as I hate the idea of the BCS & all it represents & reinforces, an LSU-Oregon matchup was beginning to look intriguing for a minute. With everyone healthy, that could be an entertaining football game.

    The Oregon defense obviously seemed to give up too many big plays, but they have speed and an imaginative offense. Tough luck for them.

  93. People tend to forget that, by keeping Druw around another year, we could benefit quite a bit if he has a bounce-back season at the plate. If he does, he’ll almost certainly be signed to a big deal the following year, and we’ll be able to get draft pick compensation then (likely A-level) almost without question. Those picks can have a rather high worth.

  94. Stop this Willi Harris at CF talk already. It is never gonna happen. It just can’t. It’s silly. Bring back Andruw for me anytime, as some already wrote. If Liberty has the oney, do it. I don’t buy this not-hustling crap. Whoever are writing this have never watched him play defense.

  95. I hate this Andruw stuff. It’s like a call from an ex on a rainy night. “I miss you. I miss us!”
    I can’t forget the his abysmal batting in 2007, his adamant refusal to change his swing in any way to help the team.
    A strikeout produces zero offense. Weak grounders to third usualy produce a negative effect. Somebody in this world can chase down the ball on defense and move a runner on offense.

    Let’s get some pitching and move on!

  96. I have no problem with offering Andruw arbitration and if he came back he would probably have a better year. I suspect a lot of his problems involved injury. But I think the Braves are done with him. I have no problem with his hustle but I still think $13 mm or whatever is a lot to pay for an all or nothing hitter no matter how good his defense is. And, while 30 isn’t old, especially these days, I do think there is a question as to whether Andruw can make the adjustments that are inevitably necessary as a player gets older. Now, if they bring him back for one year, that’s not as big a deal. But I just think it’s not going to happen. If the Braves were interested, they wouldn’t have cut ties so quickly.

  97. @100

    Sam,

    I guess you didn’t read my entire post.

    I don’t think there IS enough money to resign Tex, bring back Andruw, and bring in a starting pitcher. I think signing Andruw would have an adverse effect on resigning Tex.

    That’s why I’d be willing to pay Tex, a SP, and trade for a center fielder. Not just because I’m massively irresponsible. Maybe I’m just not massively optimistic.

  98. I don’t think there IS enough money to resign Tex, bring back Andruw, and bring in a starting pitcher. I think signing Andruw would have an adverse effect on resigning Tex.

    In that case you don’t bring him back. Of course, I wouldn’t trade away talent for Carl Crawford either. In that scenario I’d probably just play Brent Lillibridge in CF until Shafer or Hernandez was ready. Crawford’s not worth the propects you’re giving up. He’s not Mark Tiexierra.

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