Braves 4, Brewers 2

ESPN – Brewers vs. Braves – Box Score – June 25, 2008

Jorge Campillo figured out the secret — the lineup isn’t going to win the game for you, you’re going to have to do it yourself. He went 2-3 with two runs scored, plus pitched seven innings of two-run baseball despite the usual defense. It was largely his own incompetent defense that led to two runs in the third, throwing away a bunt to let the leadoff man get to second. Lillibridge, in for Infante, who pulled his hamstring running the bases and was only in because Escobar had an injured shoulder/was being disciplined for acting like a baby last night… Uh, where was I? Right, Lillibridge. Anyway, he deflected a ground ball that would have scored the first run anyway, and for some reason it was called a double, and led to the second run.

At this point, Campillo figured it out, and got on with a one-out single in the third. Blanco singled, and KJ doubled off the wall with two out to tie the game. Brandon Jones led off the fifth with a double, and Bobby called off the bunt and let Campillo swing away, getting a single. Blanco singled in Jones, and Campillo went to third on the hit. KJ beat out an infield single, scoring Campillo to make it 4-2, though the Braves should have gotten at least one more run.

That was it for the scoring. The Brewers got a couple runners in scoring position, one in the seventh off of Campillo, one in the eighth off of Boyer, but couldn’t get them in. Lillibridge had his first hit, a double in the eighth, but was stranded when Chipper (hitting for Brandon) struck out. Gonzalez let the leadoff man reach, but struck out the last two to end it.

Francoeur was 1-3 with an ealk, and sucks, but managed to not make any really egregious mistakes in the outfield.

139 thoughts on “Braves 4, Brewers 2”

  1. I agree Tomas. I can’t see how Sammons would be worse.

    Corky is just really embarassing.

  2. There’s nothing more exhilarating than pointing out the shortcomings of others, is there?

  3. Frenchy looked okay today, some good cuts, solid throw to KJ in the last inning there.
    Maybe he does have crappy eyes, if the contact issue is legit we may see a second half surge from him. It will take a while to get used to the corrective lens.

    A pig just flew by my window too.

  4. The Braves have completely disappeared from the standings at CBS Sportsline (Really, check it out.).

    I knew we are having a bad stretch, but this bad?

  5. Jenny Fracoeur had a hit to the opposite field and actually looked like he stayed down on the ball. A welcome change for sure.

  6. At the beginning of the year, I would never have guessed that:
    A) I would be as irritated by Francoeur this season as I was by Andruw Jones last season.
    B) Jorge Campillo would be a shape-shifting beast that can pitch in any scenario…long relief, starting, spot start, short relief. All with an arsenal of junk (we still need a writeup on Campillo).
    C) Our backup catcher (doesn’t matter who) would bat .100 and not be able to catch up to a 93 mph fastball.
    D) Our veterans would be so dissapointing (mostly through injuries) and our younger guys (mostly pitchers- Morton, Reyes, Jurrjens- and Brandon Jones) would be so impressive.

  7. Campillo’s a real throwback, a Preacher Roe, Ed Lopat, a guy who throws it slow, then throws it slower. I love him. If he had a 99 mile-an-hour fastball, he’d be Zack Greinke. As it is, he’s one of the most effective garbagemen in the majors.

  8. seriously, what do we do with hampton if he actually makes it through his rehab starts, warm-ups, walking down steps, and vigorous stretching back to the mound? i would have said no to a 6-man rotation but now, i dont know. it doesnt seem like that bad of an idea. although, i’m sure that someone will get injured before that even happens. i pray to god that bobby doesnt move someone to the pen on account of hampton.

  9. Somebody explain to me Ned Yost’s logic in intentionally walking Jeff Francoeur (what? the Brewers don’t have scouting reports and didn’t know how badly he’s been sucking?) then when Bobby pinch hit Chipper for Brandon, Yost actually brought in a right handed reliever to face Chipper allowing him to bat from his better side.

  10. Brewers fans have been bitching about Ned’s in-game shortcomings for quite some time now. I guess he comes from the Bobby Cox school of mismanagement.

  11. Y’all should quit picking on Bobby and Jeff. You’re just being mean-spirited bad-ass weasels.

  12. Somebody explain to me Ned Yost’s logic in intentionally walking Jeff Francoeur (what? the Brewers don’t have scouting reports and didn’t know how badly he’s been sucking?) then when Bobby pinch hit Chipper for Brandon, Yost actually brought in a right handed reliever to face Chipper allowing him to bat from his better side.

    Apparently he never considered that Chipper would hit for Brandon. He walked Francoeur to setup the lefty-lefty matchup, then here comes Chip. Why he put in Mota after that is also a mystery. Maybe he thought the veteran guy had a better chance than the lefty who was currently pitching who I had never heard of before.

    Fortunately for him, Mota got Chipper otherwise he would have looked like a Grade A fool walking Franceour to let Chipper beat you.

  13. re: #21, Ron, it’s spending three days around Bobby, Dusty Baker disease . . . very infectious.

  14. Couple of things… The lefty had just given up a double to a weak hitter. And Chipper was already coming out when the walk to Francoeur was issued.

    At any event, turning him around makes sense in that situation. While a homer blows the game open, the biggest concern is to get out of the inning without a run scoring. While Chipper has more power from the left side, and is more likely to draw a walk, he’s hit for a higher average this year righthanded, .409 versus .388 entering play. He is also slightly harder to strike out hitting righthanded.

  15. Couple of things… The lefty had just given up a double to a weak hitter.

    That’s probably the reason Mota came in. The lefty was in his second inning of work and just gave up a double to a 12th grader (you look at him and tell me he didn’t have a prom this year). Probably just wanted a fresh arm.

  16. Hey, guys, I know sometimes you make a mistake typing or just think better of a comment when you’ve read it. I’ve installed a new plugin which should allow everyone to edit their comments. If you’re a registered user, this should work permanently; if you’re not, it will give you a limited time to do so. It also makes it easier on me if I need to edit or delete a comment. Screen’s a little different, but it’s pretty quick and easy. I just edited this comment myself.

  17. i’ve been around enough fans of different teams to know that the one thing they have in common is…………………Every teams fans are smarter than their manager…………and most of them get to be smarter than a NEW manager every couple years…….. i’ll be the minority that thinks Bobby is doing a great job given what he has to work with. and if Leo was around getting these kind of results out of this mis-matched sock drawer of a staff, he’d be up for sainthood by now.

  18. I just subscribed, but now I’m getting a Postdata message every time I refresh the page. Is there something I can fix on my end?

  19. I can’t imagine why. You could try restarting your browser or clearing your cache. (There’s a limited number of things I know how to do.)

  20. Oh, man. (Not Will.) I think I was unclear. The Subscribe 2 widget on the lefthand taskbar is just for new post notifications. But I think you have to be a registered user to get those… Anyway, you have to have a WordPress login.

  21. Does anyone thing the best lineup for Friday (looking long term) is McCann as the DH, Hamster at C and Chipper not playing?

    Everyone says Chipper is going to be back Friday, but if you read Chipper’s quotes, he says he’ll be back Friday, “hopefully.”

    I feel like if you take the one game of having Corky in there (especially with day games Saturday and Sunday) you’re able to keep McCann’s bat in the lineup on Friday while giving him two full days off from catching (and avoiding the day game after a night game scenario on saturday) and you give chipper one more day. chipper can then come back and dh saturday with mccann, rested, back behind the plate.

    Just a thought…

  22. Also, I added a widget on the lefthand side giving the weather. I’ll follow the Braves around normally, but unfortunately I can’t figure out how to set it for a Canadian city and they’ll be in a dome anyway.

  23. I just watched some of innings again on MLB (it’s just crazy fun to see Campillo not only get people out, but actually striking out a fair number of batters), and that leads me to this:

    Is there any way possible that we can trade away Chip for some golf balls or something? I don’t really mind Joe much apart from when he spirals into another stupid maple bat tirade, but Chip is really grating on my nerves.

  24. Off-the-wall question directed to Ububba and Mac (and any other David Allan Coe fans). In the song “Long-haired Redneck,” what the heck is he talking about in the lyric “Long before Rodriguez stole that goat?” I’ve always wondered about that, but I guess never enough to Google it.

  25. Bonds must be getting desperate. He just came out to say he’d play for League minimum. Actually, he said he’d play for free (giving all money he’d recieve to children to have tickets to the game). Now I really dislike the guy, but I’d almost jump at that proposition. He can rake. And he doesn’t necessarily HAVE to play the field. Most games I’d just have him as a bat off the bench.

  26. I don’t think that the Braves would ever take a shot on Bonds. Seems like Bobby would veto that even if Wren wanted to take a flyer.

    I feel certain he can outhit our current outfielders, true, but I wonder if he can still rake. He’s old, he’s off the steroids, and he hasn’t played in a while. I know he was still very productive last year, but he has to show his age sometime…

    All that said, if it was me, I would take the chance, especially if it essentially cost me nothing. Just don’t see it happening though.

  27. Braves Moon Splits (including day games)

    Third Quarter 0-2
    Waning Crescent 8-7
    New Moon 2-0
    Waxing Crescent 6-9
    First Quarter 1-3
    Waxing Gibbous 5-8
    Full Moon 10-2
    Waning Gibbous 7-10

  28. editing comments?


    I have to say, with all due respect to all others who suck at typing, I don’t think anyone appreciates this as much as i do….

    …Christ I suck at precise typing/proofreading before I click submit.


  29. Guys, y’all might wanna check the Missisippi game. Something interesting going on there.

  30. Audio here :…ex.jsp?cid=t430

    register for free.

    or follow boxscore at

  31. o hits and 14ks for hanson through 8. that’s pretty impressive. on a side note, was there reason kotsay was pulled halfway through? jordan schafer looks to be swinging well after a pretty long dry period.
    btw, jorge julio has richmond fooled with a low era (1.42 through 6.1 innings pitched). there are, however, 2 “unearned” runs that he has surrendered as well.

  32. Oh yes!
    Kotsay 2-3
    Schafer 2-4, a triple and a catch of the liner which led to

    9ip, 14Ks, 3BBs, 0H!!!! for Tommy Hanson

  33. He did it!

    Tommy Hanson complete game no-hitter at AA.

    Congrats, Tommy. Way to go.

    You definitely gotta like seeing that if youre a Braves fan.

  34. headline from ajc:
    Infante injured on double
    Rookie strains hamstring, but hopes to avoid DL; Kotsay, Hampton make rehab appearances.

    mac, maybe someone should adopt your editing system. i really didnt know that 7 year veterans get to keep their rookie status.

  35. Tommy Hanson will be our Charlie Morton of next year. My goodness, the Braves are finally developing some young pitchers!

  36. Awesome night!

    I didn’t get home until like 9, so I caught the Braves game on audio archive. And that turned out well. :-D

    Then I click on here to find that maybe I should’ve been listening to Hanson’s no-no instead! I hope he can keep it up the rest of the way. He’s looking like he might be able to help out at the big league level sooner rather than later.

    ETA: I like the time limit on the edit feature. :-)

  37. Go Fresno State!!! It’s been a long time since one of my teams won a title.
    Braves 1995
    Raiders 1983 season
    Warriors 1975 the year I was born

  38. Does anyone else find it extremely refreshing to have a legitimate closer again? While we still probably shouldn’t expect too much from Gonzo, given that he’s just returned from a year injured, you do have confidence that he will get the job done most of the time. Plus, his slider was just nasty. Much better than having Atrosta throwing belt high fastballs, in any case.

  39. What a great game for Hanson…14 Ks…I think he has made the transition to AA.

    If he keeps pitching well at AA, he might get some coffee in Atlanta before the end of the year….

  40. Congrats, ricflair. Your guys deserved it. They played great all three games. Especially that wierd looking guy with no thumb muscle that the announcers kept going on and on and on and on and on about.

    In your honor, WHOOO!! To be the man, you gotta beat the man!!

    And they did.

  41. I am so excited for Tommy Hanson. I figured you guys would already know about it.

    Just awesome!

    Here’s hoping he’ll do that for Atlanta some day.

  42. Great accomplishment for Hanson, no doubt. 14K’s, 3 BBs and a hit batsmen. How many pitches did he throw ?? Didn’t he have a no-no going last year when he got pulled for getting close to his pitch count, or am I just making that up ??

  43. His first start of this year, jj3.

    I think Cody is coming around too. Rodriguez, too early to say anything. Old for comp and repeating the level.

    Locke is actually doing ok. His K rate is down, and BB rate is up, which is a bit worrying. but he is getting hit unlucky. Generating lot of groundballs…with a better defence ( the Rome iF is bad to say the least ), he would have much better numbers.

  44. MAC!!! I think a seperate post is needed for Tommy Hanson’s no-no. What an amazing game! DO IT MAC!!!!

  45. Mac is too busy talking about how Corky and Francoeur sucks…he couldn’t be bothered with anything optimistic right now :)

  46. I still can’t believe Fresno State beat ASU, let alone won the whole thing. Congrats to them. I’m going to cut my hair in a skullet tomorrow.

  47. “Since I’ve gotten here, I’ve changed a couple things and today was the first day everything clicked together,” Hanson said. “That’s the main thing.”

    Well done Tommy.

    I would never consider Cody to have a good game unless he does not have a strikeout. If he is having such problem already in single A, the chance of him to be anything good is very very low…

  48. Parish–I am watching Geraldo Rodriguez and I can’t figure out why (if he is any good) the Braves were able to get him from the Yanks. I don’t think that he is really repeating a level, but I would like to see some strike zone judgement.

    That said, given the loss of Draft and Follow, (which might easily reduce our quality prospects by a third) players like Geraldo Rodriguez are important to the Braves’ future….

  49. Stephen, if the Braves are willing to spend beyond the slot amount, the loss of draft and follow will not hurt as much.

  50. KC–Johnson is young for the SAL and he demonstrated great improvement in 2007 over 2006; therefore, I am not ready to give up on him. I think he could become an Adam Dunn type–which means with some luck the Braves would get something less than that. A Mike Marshall or Phil Plantier kind of player is not out of the questions….

  51. Except that Draft and Follow probably costs a lot less.

    The key to this draft for the Braves will be signing not only DeVall, Stovall and Thompson, but also Burns, Palazzone and Pope. I fear that it will prove much easier to get Hanson, Brandon Jones, Rohrbough and Tyler Flowers signed to contracts….

  52. Stephen, is it really true that the costs in signing draft and follow is a lot less? I am just curious because I don’t understand the logic. If the player considers himself a higher round pick, he can simply re-enter the draft again unless the team offers him a “fair” contract which is attractive enough for him not to re-enter the draft again. Is my understanding correct?

    So, the benefit of draft-and-follow for the team, IMHO, is that they have a year longer to observe but not necessary on saving.

    Ok, that’s all I know about draft-and-follow. I am sure you have a much better understanding than I do!

  53. KC–To be fair, I am not sure it has really been studied. The Braves apparently made more use of Draft and Follow than virtually any other club. The big advantage is that it allows a club to talk, monitor and possibly even guide (though they are not supposed to) a young player. The player can then believe that organization is behind him, understands him and knows how much he is worth. The key for an organization is to make a strong offer–simply to keep the player out of the draft. I believe that this is what the Astros did with Roy Oswalt. Since most players don’t know in what round that they will be drafted, when a club makes a good offer (which may be much lower than the slot price) they often say yes.

    Admittedly, I know very little about it either and whenever I raised the issue on Sickels’ blog, I did not get a response. My belief is that this one of the very smart things the Braves were able to do for a number of years.

    Maybe we will spend the money to pick up either a second DSL Club or a team in the VSL. To my mind either would be a wonderful investment for Atlanta….

  54. Braves win and a no-no on the farm… good Braves day. And yes, I’m largely posting this so I can see the edit button :D.

  55. It’s nice but I can’t get too excited about a minor league no hitter. Given the odds of pitching prospects, I won’t get excited until Hanson is doing this in Atlanta.

    I do think McDowell deserves some credit for bringing these young pitchers in Atlanta along. If it was Leo, it would be another example how he is the god of pitching coaches. In the long run, the injuries to Smoltz and Glavine might be beneficial although obviously not for this year.

  56. So we’ve now got:

    Campillo who has now gone more than 6 innings for 3 starts in a row and only gave up 2, 4, and 2 runs in those starts.

    Jurjjens – who is 7-3 with a 3.2 ERA

    Morton has now had three starts and not given up more than 3 runs in any of them, and gone 5 or 6 innings each time

    Jo Jo Reyes who has apparently found his control, prior to his short start on Monday he’d gone at least 7 innings in 4 of his previous 5 starts (and the one of those he didn’t go 7, he went 6), and only one of those did he give up more than 2 runs.

    What do we do if Hampton and Glavine come back? I guess we’ll need to rest the young guys a bit so we don’t blow out their arms in September. And how far fetched is the Hampton to left field concept? Isn’t that what happened with Ankiel?

    *this edit feature is pretty cool, I may have to try this on my personal blog*

  57. I’ve been very reluctant to give McDowell credit, but at this point it’s hard not to. From resurrecting Hudson after 2006, to what he’s done with all the young guys this year… hats off to him.

    Change of subject. Does anybody remember if a couple years ago when the NL West was so bad if they ever managed to have a losing team leading their division? Right now the D-Backs are only one game over .500 and with the schedules for the next few games it is entirely possible that the NL West’s best record could be under .500.

  58. Hampton’s not going to play LF. He’s way older than Ankiel was when he tried the transition, and Ankiel also had to spend like 2-3 years in the minors learning how to hit.

  59. I hate the idea of messing up our rotation for Hampton… But I can’t imagine the Braves going to a six man rotation either. I guess there’s only a 2% chance he’ll actually come back anyways, but still…
    What do you guys think will happen?

  60. I really dont see the Braves breaking up this rotation for Hampton, but if they do I’m guessing Morton goes back and finishes out the year (until Sept) in Richmond. I dont know what will happen when Glavine comes back. It’ll be well after the break and Im sure some other injury will occur before then

  61. For Rob Cope and the guys still playing regularly:
    What do you think about the discussion on the danger of maple bats? Are they here to stay?

  62. I would love to see the Braves trade Tex to LAA. Maybe for Kotch, Rivera or Willits, and a young SP. They wouldnt do it, but there offense isnt very good right now and Kotchman has been one of their better hitters

  63. Kevin, they are talking about going to ash bats and away from maple bats. Most of the problems now isnt that they are maple, its that these companies are creating the bats with the handles so thin they have to break. If they would thicken the handles, this would help the cause.

  64. A no-hitter in the minors is not a good indicator of how well a pitcher will pitch in the majors, or even whether he will make it. However, I am happy that Hanson has evidently made the transition to AA. One step at a time….

  65. Mac–I like the weather feature–it adds a new dimension to the coverage on Braves Journal….

  66. Thanks AAR, it looks like they were 2 games under .500 on September 26 of that year… and it looks like the NL West may be doing the same thing again this year… course so may the NL East at this rate.

    Well mraver, isn’t that why people have suggested it for Hampton? he could already hit so he’d just have to learn how to field a bit. And I know Bobby had done that switch the pitcher to left field for a batter and then bring him back to pitch to the next guy thing earlier in the year… Just trying to think outside the box… we should at least get SOMETHING out of Hampton (and yes I know there’s zero chance he goes out and plays left field for us this year… ’twas just the required wild internet speculation).

  67. It should be an interesting weekend for the East race.
    Braves at Toronto
    Phillies at Texas
    Mets at Yankees
    Snakes at Miami

  68. I think that Hampton has to pitch very badly before the Braves will decide not to “at least get something out of him”. Ideally, he may be able to teach the young pitchers a few things about the craft–but all of that, of course, assumes that he comes back and does not get reinjured…

    It should be an interesting weekend: go Texas!

  69. CharlesP,
    When it comes to lousy teams leading cruddy divisions, let’s not forget the 1994 AL West.

    When the teams quit playing, the Texas Rangers were perched on top at 52-62. The last-place Angels were 21 games under .500, yet merely 5.5 games out of first.

    As a hater of the 6-division setup, I was overjoyed at the prospect of the Rangers in the post-season—as in, “See how ridiculous this is?”

  70. How are we managing to stay in the race?

    The AL is beating the NL’s brains in during interleague play. Again.

    Kevin, they are talking about going to ash bats and away from maple bats. Most of the problems now isnt that they are maple, its that these companies are creating the bats with the handles so thin they have to break. If they would thicken the handles, this would help the cause.

    There are issues with having enough ash to go around if they were to ditch maple all together, so I imagine they will play with the dimensions of the bats to try to keep someone from being killed.

  71. One idea for Hampton’s return is to move Campillo back to the bullpen. But this seems like an awful waste. What I’d really like to see is the young guys (Jurrjens especially, since he’s gone the most innings thus far) get some rest. It would be a bad thing for Jurrjens to get more than like 180 innings this year. And by that I mean total, including any (however unlikely) playoff innings.

  72. Stephen, I think the no-no is a little more indicative of future success because of the number of Ks and also the improved GO-AO ratio. Before the last inning, Hanson had only allowed 3 balls in the air.

  73. I keep seeing references to this guy named Hampton and his alleged return. I’ve been calling for his release for two years now. Instead of punishing Campillo, they need to put Hampton’s “fixed” body in the bullpen if he ever returns.

  74. Wow ububba, I guess I have most of the ’94 info shut out of my head except for Maddux’s numbers.

    Ben, Hampton is a mythological creature we’ve been paying millions to for the last few years.

  75. CSG,

    I can’t imagine why the Angels would make the trade you suggest for Teixera. First, they would only get him for two months. True, Arte Moreno has a lot of money and is willing to spend, but there is no guarantee–and probably highly unlikely–that Tex would not test free agency. So you would be giving up your first baseman and other players for a two month rental.

    Second, while the Angels certainly need more offense (I saw them in DC on Monday and they can’t hit)it’s not clear to me that Tex would be such a huge upgrade over Kotchman, especially this year given his struggles against lefties. Even if he was, the Angels probably don’t need him to win the division. So, the question would be whether he would make them significantly mroe dangerous in the playoffs. I’m not sure he does, especially since the playoffs are a crapshoot anyway.

  76. Parish–A no-hitter is a single game–which by itself does not predict longer sustatined trends. More generally, impressive minor league pitching stats do not always foreshadow big league results. Chuck James and Jose Capellan come to mind.

    Don’t get me wrong: I think that Hanson is quite a prospect and I would not be surprised if he competes for a spot in the rotation in 2009….

  77. #119 – I dont think they would either, but Im guessing that’s about what we ask for in return. Our best bet will be the two draft picks, unless we (and Tex/Boras agrees to) having a 72 hr window for negotiations. I honestly dont see us moving him. The Angels/Boston are about the only teams I could see trading for him. It would be interesting to see Tex in the Rays lineup. I dont think the Yanks and Boston would like it too much

  78. I’m in college so we’re hitting with aluminum. I got nothin’. Here’s my question though: what is the big deal? Has anyone been injured with a shredded bat?

    The thing about a thin handle is that, yeah, they break, but you get so much more bat speed when the brunt of the weight of the bat is in the barrel. The thinner the handle, the harder you’re gonna hit the ball. I think the added advantage to the hitter is going to outweigh the risk of injury to everyone else. People just need to pay attention at the ballgames and the fielders need to stay out of the way of flying bat-pieces, deal with the distraction, and make the play. Sheesh.

  79. Dude, that comment editing thing is pretty sweet. Though this is guaranteed to reduce my post amount to about half its size. I’ve already used it. haha

  80. Has anyone been injured with a shredded bat?

    Did you not see the ump that guy hit in the head with the broken handle of the bat? It cut the back of his head pretty bad. I agree its part of the game, but it seems like more and more are getting shattered these days and its a problem

  81. csg,

    I didn’t see that. Good point. But for all the shredded bats there are, that’s one instance, and I’m sure there hasn’t been much more than that. Aside from fans and the umpires, remember, the fielders themselves are using the same bats when they’re at the plate. They get to use the same bats, so they should deal with the risk of them when they’re on the opposite side. Now, fans and umpires, of course, there’s no advantage for them. However, umpires have stayed fairly safe and injury-free for the hundreds of games they work a year. I dunno. It’s a tough situation.

  82. Well, I certainly respect umpires and I do think they do an incredible job, especially with the scrutiny they’re under and the conditions in which they work (being away from their families, staying in hotels, all the traveling). And I also don’t want to diminish the pain they’ve suffered. But seriously, one of those guys had a bruised jaw and one had a cut on his forehead. I’m not saying that’s a walk in the park, but is that enough to get rid of effective bats? I don’t have an answer to that question, but I’d have to say that things could be a lot worse.

  83. There was a whole piece on Yahoo about it a couple weeks ago with some fan who took a shard in the face (ball got hit, she was following the ball and WHAM, chunk of maple in the face and re-constructive surgery needed.), and apparently there have been a few others (and a fair number more close calls).

  84. The problem isn’t maple wood, it’s that the handles of the bats are about as thick as a toothpick. Too many players get used to thin handles and big barrels playing in college with those aluminum bats and want to keep that feel with wooden bats.

    Maple bats have been allowed in MLB since 1997. I don’t get why the sudden outcry. I think some people just want something to complain about.

  85. 1) Thin handles is at least part of the problem, but it could be that those thin handles are more prone to breaking when made of Maple instead of Ash.

    2) While they were allowed in 97 (I’m assuming you’re right on the date for that) it has been a slow adoption over time and become more and more prevalent (something to do with Bonds using them during his record season supposedly). So if 15 guys have Maple and 10 percent of them break more often it’s not really an issue, if 250 guys use them and 10 percentage breaks you’ve got a lot of projectiles (hence it starts showing up in news stories).

  86. I think the hitters are just going to have to suck it up and deal with thicker handles. This is a sport, the safety of the players, crew and fans has to come before a performance advantage. Power numbers in baseball are still down despite the maple bats, so I can’t believe it’s that much of an advantage.

  87. Rob,

    No offense but it’s just a game. Why should the advantage hitters get outweigh the safety risk–however large or small–to umpires/players/fans? Yes, there is some inherent risk in playing or attending a game but if you can reduce the risk reasonably, why not?

    And, Dan, the reason people are upset isn’t that they are looking for something to complain about; it’s that people are getting hurt or close to being hurt.

    Whatever the problem is, let’s improve it rather than saying, oh no big deal.

  88. #130 – nice

    basically the problem isnt maple. They let these guys customize their bats and the guys want the handles as thin as possible. Just thicken them up a little and there is no issue

  89. I’m not saying that’s a walk in the park, but is that enough to get rid of effective bats?

    Uh, yeah. You’ve got wooden stakes flying around the ballpark on a regular basis, they are going to have to do something about it. It a legal liability nightmare. Writing it off as an occupational hazard isn’t going to fly. Usually something really, really bad has to happen before things get fixed (like the little girl getting killed at an NHL game), hopefully that won’t be the case this time.

  90. csg – right now, the problem is with maple. In addition to the high frequency of broken bats, they are splitting lengthwise with the grain and not breaking off in a snap. This has projectiles with spear-sharp points flying around.

    If they would increase the handle thicknesss and stop the players from shaving the handles down, it would help the problem by decreasing the occurrances.

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