I really can’t take the end of any more eras

Van Wieren surprises with retirement | braves.com: News

Pete, now? Man. Pete probably shaped my view of baseball more than anyone else. Skip was funny, Ernie played the game, but Pete was the one who thought about the game. I really wasn’t prepared for this — and it seems like the Braves weren’t, either.

And check out the hair on Skip in that picture. Wow.

228 thoughts on “I really can’t take the end of any more eras”

  1. cant say I blame him. After losing his longtime friend and partner, I would assume it would be difficult to continue.

  2. Unreal and sad. I just assumed with Skip passing, that Pete and Joe would carry the torch as the leftover team for the local broadcasts.

    Is Joe Simpson at least remaining employed?

    Let’s talk about Jake Peavy.

  3. Re Peavey,

    I think Robert is correct that the goal should be to construct a really good team, not try to sneak into the playoffs counting on a weak division (which isn’t so weak anymore). But I don’t think that precludes making trades to improve the team and trading prospects within reason for an ace. Let’s face it, given the Braves track record, there is no guarantee that Hanson or whomever will ever be a quality major league pitcher. So the Braves might keep all their young players and still not be any good. That doesn’t mean I would do anything to get Peavey. I don’t know what the proper formula would be but I don’t think you can simply assume that every pitcher you acquire is automatically going to get hurt. It’s actually more likely that the young pitchers, like Hanson, will get hurt than established pitchers (despite Hudson to the contrary). I don’t think the Braves will need to give up as much as the Pads are initially offering because the Padres don’t have that many alternatives. So, I say, pursue the trade but don’t go crazy,./

  4. A heartfelt goodbye to a real professional. There are echoes of Skip’s passing in Pete’s timing and the sentiment he expressed to “live my life without the restrictions of a baseball schedule”. I’m glad he’ll get to enjoy a retirement.

  5. I wondered if this might happen with Pete. I thought he might go one more year, but I was pretty sure it was coming soon.

    I’ve always thought Pete was the best announcer of the bunch, and while it was pretty annoying when they banished him to the radio booth a couple years ago, I always enjoyed having the ability to turn the radio on and listen to Pete when the goofiness on TV got to be too much. Not having him around next year will take some getting used to, perhaps even more getting used to than not having Skip around for me (although obviously the circumstances of not having Skip around were far more depressing).

    I’m sure I’m echoing everybody’s sentiments when I say that I wish Pete well in his retirement and I hope that we see him around from time to time.

  6. Man. This is just sad for me. Even when Skip wasn’t too healthy, I was thinking, “Well, even if Skip retires, we’ll still have Pete.” But now it looks like that won’t happen, either. What a shame.

    I think Mac’s thread title sums it up best for me. All that’s really left is Chipper and Smoltz. And who knows if Smoltz will be able to pitch effectively anymore. I’m just glad he was able to reach 3000Ks. Seriously, how good was he to start the season?

    I’m left wondering what I’m going to do next summer. ‘Cause there’s no way I’m going to listen to Chip and the Lemmer the same way I listened to Skip and Pete.

  7. We will miss you, Pete. Thanks for the professionalism & grace—it didn’t go unnoticed.

    Nice hot-stove convo yesterday. Missed it all with a travel day. Mark me down as wanting Peavy, but with reservations. (Gotta keep Escobar & 4-for-1 may be a bit much.)

    The principle of not wanting to give up prospects, seems to me, only works if your prospects are worth keeping. Otherwise, flipping them for established (and signed) talent seems reasonable. And I wonder how much Khalil Greene will factor in any deal—I really don’t want him.

    Mr. Wren, the ball’s in your court…

  8. Isn’t it a crime TBS or Fox didn’t recruit Pete for their play off announcing teams? Always prepared, always smooth as buttah, always a consumate professional, unlike unibrow Chip or imbecile McCarver or whatever empty suit or moron ex-jock they trot out there.

  9. Just checking back…didn’t take as much of a beating as I thought I would in the previous thread. Just wanted to address this:

    What draft picks? We suck, we don’t lose a first-rounder for signing free agents. And if we didn’t suck, we’d be in a position to challenge quickly.

    All picks have value. Brian McCann was a second round pick. The ‘use it or lose it’ financial model is a loser. I witness it first hand every year. It’s how you end up with the Gary Matthews and Juan Pierre type contracts.

    But if the choice is between throwing money at Plodding Slugger X and Creaky Shoulder Hurler Y in FA and giving the picks or trading three or four young players for an established player, put me down for the former.

  10. All reasonable ideas in the previous thread, Robert.

    The only amendment I’d make is that some of the big-market bullies also developed their waves of young talent (from Jeter & Rivera to Pedroia & Lester). The fact that they can keep them & and then add on is what certainly makes them bullies.

  11. This is more sad news–I will always miss Pete’s deep love for the game which was made repeatedly evident with his intellect.

    I suppose there is something to be said for having all the changes come at once, but this one is hard to take.

    At this point we know that Bobby is still planning on being manager in 2009…

  12. At this point we know that Bobby is still planning on being manager in 2009…

    Are you trying to depress me even more, Stephen?

  13. So Andruw Jones plans to ask the Dodgers for a trade and wants back with the Braves.

    With Anderson and Blanco not being all that good, and Schafer maybe being part of a trade this offseason, and Hernandez not ready…I could see that nightmare coming true.

    Even if the Dodgers give him away for a nothing prospect and pay all his salary, I would not do it. I can too easily see Cox plugging him in the cleanup spot for the first two months of the 2009 regular season.

  14. Time to revisit Jason’s idea—we’ll take Andruw back and pay his entire salary, but you have to give us Matt Kemp.

  15. Bad news indeed on losing Pete. Enjoy your retirement, Pete. You’ve definately earned it and you will be sorely missed.

    On Peavy: If the price isn’t too high, you have to trade for him. I can live without Schafer, Flowers, Hanson, and pretty much any pitching prospect. But I don’t want to trade good, established major leaguers like Escobar and KJ for whom there are no immediate replacements. That kind of defeats the purpose.

    Peavy may not make us front-runners all by himself, but he’s a pretty darn big piece of the puzzle.

  16. I’m generally against trading KJ, and I hope his strong September-October has reminded the Braves how good he can be. But if they want to move him, moving him in a deal to get Peavy would be a lot better than moving him just to get rid of him. And while I’m hardly a big Prado fan, I’d rather see him at second than L’ilbridge — or Spicoli — at short.

  17. ububba, there are much worse pizza choices than Tombstone. There are no worse major leaguers than Frenchy.

  18. I think we should offer Lillibridge, Marek and Gorkys for Peavy, if only for the fact that they’re the afterthoughts of probably our three biggest trades of the last 2 years.

  19. #16–I am not even sure: either Bobby is the last man standing or sees the light….I might add be careful what you wish for….

  20. DiGiornos are good. But DiGiornos are so expensive, you can go to the nearest Little Caesar’s and pick up a “Hot and Ready” for $5 and save money. Tombstones are the way to go. They’re like 3 bucks and they’ll get you full. Wow, I sound like a college student…

    Speaking of college students, I got a buddy of mine who I go to college with that is ridiculously shrewd. I got 15 tickets to the ALCS Game 7, and he bought 10 from me, then turned around and sold them all TO HIS FRIENDS (!!!!!), like GOOD FRIENDS, for twice as much as he bought them from me. He ended up getting paid like $500 after he paid for his ticket and parking. Kid got paid $500 to go to the game. Nice.

    YESTERDAY, he got picked in the drawing to get Game 1 and 2 tickets. He bought 8 tickets to each game for like $150 apiece, and turned around and sold them for $425 each. Then, bought 4 for Game 6 somehow for $200 each, then sold those for $800 each. All in about an hour. I hate this kid…

  21. If Francoeur were a frozen pizza wouldn’t he be a Stouffer’s FRENCH bread pizza. . . . I’m truly sorry for that. I’m not even sure my grandparents would think that is funny.

  22. Francoeur could be that nasty, cheap pizza they serve at Cici’s Pizza for $2.99 for all you can eat.

  23. I blame Bobby for Pete’s retirement. After losing Skip mid-season, I’m sure Pete looked at the train wreck potential of ’09 and said, “You know what? I can’t take another 600 ABs of The RF Who Shall Not Be Named.” And promptly retired. If they had stood their ground on the minor league demotion that wasn’t, Pete would still be calling the Braves’ games.

  24. Greinke would look great with an A on his hat. Gilbert Gottfried would be the Mr. P’s of whatever it is he’s famous for.

  25. Oh, and Peak Coffee is a myth. I have no evidence to support this, but since I enjoy drinking coffee so much, I will ignore all warnings to its scarcity.

  26. Dammit!

    I can’t stand Joe and Chip. With Pete and Skip gone it’s just not going to be the same. They need to bring on Boog full-time. Instead, they’ll probably fire Boog and bring back Paciorek and Torborg.

  27. I always thought Pete would have made a great Commissioner of Baseball.

    I’m serious.

    Good grief. If they had moved to team to Oklahoma City, I’m not sure the sense of loss that is this year would be greater.

    Good thing I’m starting to warm to Sciambi.

  28. @51

    You would think that they would have better things to do down in the Tampa Bay Rays’ office this week than write stuff like that. I mean, Jesus was that awful. I think that even Peanut would resign to save his dignity before writing something like that.

  29. I believe we are stuck with The Son, but his condesending tone drives me up the wall. True baseball people do not run radio anymore.

    If I had my way I would build around Boog. He knows his stuff, and can laugh at himself. A true baseball nerd.

  30. Agree about building around Boog.

    I don’t get the Chip-hate. If anything, he seems a little earnest. I don’t hear the condescension at all. Like Thorman, I think he’s a Valium away from being pretty good.

    Speaking of 1st Base: Wouldn’t it be best for all concerned if McCann ends up there?

  31. That’s the sort of thing teams used to do — Joe Torre played about 200 games at first base for the Braves, while the Reds used to move Bench all over the place when he wasn’t catching. Teams don’t do that anymore and I don’t know why. It makes some sense in the AL, where a good-hitting catcher can DH.

  32. The devil is a better hitter than Frenchy, though I hear his arm isn’t as good. We might want to sign him to a minor league deal and see if he can make the team.

    YOu knew it was coming, someone was going to say it.

  33. I remember those days too Mac, they found way to keep a good player on the field, I think Ted Simmons used to get sprinkled around too.
    Yogi Berra is another one, of course he is an exception, not a rule, but if you have talent, find a way to keep them in the game.
    Flowers couldnt be as useless as Frenchy in RF, a near guarantee.

  34. The only thing I can think of is that it’s a result of short benches and only carrying one backup catcher (so you would have to disrupt two positions if your catcher leaves the game).

  35. Good point.

    I am really see-sawing on the Peavy thing, i want us to get him, but we so many holes do we actually get any better by getting him? are we just plugging one hole but making another?
    If we are going to trade for him, and then sign a SP as well, i will be more inclined to go with it, but if not, them less so.

  36. oldtimer, my feeling is that by pursuing Peavy we may miss out on another pitcher. If Wren doesnt set some kind of timetable on getting this deal done it might get too late and then he might make some desperate move and trade too much after the fact.

  37. That is a good point too.
    It seems like we do have some good young talent rising in the ranks and we may blow it all out without making us significantly better.
    Then again, we dumped Marte for Renty then for Jurrjens so…

  38. Chip’s a nice guy, but he’s an idiot and not very good at his job.

    I guess we’ll have to hear him for all of the non SS/FSN games.

  39. Do you guys think they’ll bring anyone new in? Or do you think its just gonna be Joe and Chip on Peachtree TV all year?

  40. That’s the sort of thing teams used to do — Joe Torre played about 200 games at first base for the Braves, while the Reds used to move Bench all over the place when he wasn’t catching. Teams don’t do that anymore and I don’t know why.

    The Dodgers did it with LoDuca in ’02-’04 which wasn’t that long ago. But yeah 13 man pitching staffs limit the creativity of a manager in lots of ways.

  41. I forgot about LoDuca, but you’re right, of course. But Piazza only played two games at first base before 2004 (when the Mets experimented with a permanent move). Javy Lopez played one game there in his entire career (none with the Braves). Posada’s done it a little, but most of those (12 games) in one season.

    LoDuca broke in as a backup/utility player, and maybe that’s why (after he became a good regular) the Dodgers were more flexible with him.

  42. The 1971 Braves had Earl Williams, Hal King, and Bob Didier on the roster pretty much all year, allowing Williams to occasionally field badly at two other positions (1B, 3B).

    Brandon Inge is a modern example of the type.

  43. Well, that’s different, a guy who isn’t a good catcher and who plays catcher-and to stay in the league. The Braves had two guys like that in the early nineties, Cabrera and Willard. I’m talking about the best-hitting regular catchers.

  44. LoDuca broke in as a backup/utility player, and maybe that’s why (after he became a good regular) the Dodgers were more flexible with him.


  45. I’ll miss ya Pete. I dread the experience of Braves radio without you and Skip. For the past 8 years I’ve listened to probably 90% of all Braves broadcasts on the radio. I can’t imagine what next summer will feel like with no Pete or Skip.

  46. The Dodgers played Russ Martin at 3B a lot last year (like 10 games).

    Also, I really enjoyed Hank’s comment: Chip would be better if he’d just chill out a bit. Not saying he’d be good; he just wouldn’t suck quite so much.

  47. Best of luck, Pete.

    With everything that’s happened this year, it really seems like I’m getting pushed into being a Nats fan. Still holding strong for now.

  48. I’m gonna take a hack at a quote I heard from an SNL sketch about the VP debate, which speaks perfectly of Chip Caray:

    Joe Biden (talking about John McCain): Like my mother used to say, God love him, but he’s unstable and bad at his job.

    This was not meant to be political at all.

  49. I love the idea of catchers being able to play in the field. That same friend (the guy who scalped all the tickets and has a promising future as a drug dealer) ironically has a huge obsession with Brandon Inge. Just… FYI. Anyway, I used to do it in high school. I’d catch, then to give the back-up catcher at-bats, I’d play third or left field. This year, to get more at-bats, I’m gonna try to grab the back-up catcher position. I haven’t caught since high school, but hey, I’ve got a decent arm and I love getting hit in the nuts. Alright, scratch the last part…

  50. It seems that Southerners settle for crummy pizza, while Northerners retain no concept of good BBQ.

    I remember Earl Williams. As a Brave, he hit one of the longest HRs ever at Veteran’s Stadium in Philly. After he did it, Phils manager Frank Lucchesi had his bat checked. I remember Milo Hamilton & Ernie Johnson getting all indignant about it.

    And Williams was a really lousy catcher and 1B. His nickname was “Big Money.” After we traded him to Baltimore, Orioles fans began to call him, “Loose Change.”

    Just got into Amsterdam and, of course, my hotel room’s not ready for another 5 hours. Gee, how does a fellow kill time in a town like this?

  51. ububba……..you’ll think of something. i was there back in ’72 and didnt sleep for three days straight.

  52. Really nice article by Bradley. My thoughts exactly!!

    I’m really enjoying the recent discourse on the Peavy trade and other possibilities. I don’t have time any more to do some of the homework that many of you do, so I really appreciate being the beneficiary of your knowledge. I’ll say it again, I love this site!

  53. Sickels should be releasing his early-form Braves Top 20 Prospects today, so that will certainly add a bit to the Peavy trade discussion.

    I’m pretty excited.

  54. per mlb rumors…

    Sherman of the New York Post talked to several executives. They came to the reasonable conclusion that Peavy will be traded to the Braves for Tommy Hanson, Jordan Schafer, and a middle infielder. This is a plausible scenario given the preferences of Peavy and Padres GM Kevin Towers.


  55. Wouldn’t surprise me if the MI was KJ. I’d be pretty shocked if the MI was Escobar. That’d be a TON of value.

  56. Maybe I mis-read JC’s articlae on valuing Peavy, but I read it to mean that if you fixed the last year at 22 million (wich will have to happen for Peavy ot approve the trade) that the difference between the theoretical cost of Peavy’s performance over the life of the contract was 3 million per year. That is, that getting comparable (in effect, Win Shares or equivalent) performance by signing a Free agent would only be 3 million more per each year. There is a slight back loading that may already be reflected in JC’s estimates.

    Guys, right now, Hanson may be the most valuable pitcher that hasn’t pitched in the Major Leagues. The Arizona Fall League guys he is blowing through are the best that AAA, AA, and High A have to offer (the equivalent of pitching at a AA or AAA All Star game every night). But in thinkng about this, I decided to look at Escobar only.

    If we send Escobar and get back Greene, that is a minus. So, I won’t weight this down with the minus. Just assuming Escobar straight up for Peavy. Now, IF there were no free agent pitchers available, I might think differently, but assuming there are a fair number of them and they are available, we would lose on a 1 up deal for Escobar.

    How can that possibly be, might you say. I will put that out in my next comment.

  57. It’s a TON of value with KJ, too. I’d rather keep Yunel than KJ, but goodness, that seems like a lot to give up for Peavy.

    Should we really have to give up 2 of our top 3 prospects if we’re also sending them one of our best major league hitters?

  58. ST. PETERSBURG – The Jake Peavy sweepstakes will proceed concurrently with the World Series, and the expectation of major league executives polled over the past two days is that the Braves are going to end up with the Padre right-hander.

    “Don’t discount the (Braves manager) Bobby Cox factor,” an AL GM said. “He is a veteran manager. He is used to winning. His team hasn’t made the playoffs for a few years now. He is influential in the organization. And he wants players who can win now. So I can see him really pushing to get a Peavy deal done.”

    The executives spoken to say they anticipate a Braves package being built around pitcher Tommy Hanson and outfielder Jordan Schafer, who both peaked at Double-A last year, plus a middle infielder, either shortstop Yunel Escobar or second baseman Kelly Johnson.

    Another AL GM said, “That is really a good deal if San Diego can make it.”

    Whew. That trade is very borderline for me. Hanson and Schafer I can live with, but I’m not sure about adding in Escobar or Johnson on top of that. If they’ll take Prado or Lillibridge, then go ahead.

  59. Valuing Escobar versus Peavy and his current contract with the option fixed.

    1. Peavy’s contract will almost certainly get you either Lowe or Sheets. Lowe isn’t worth 5 years at his age, but the same AAV over 3 would probably get that done. It will not get you Sabathia. That would take 5 million more a year.

    2. What is Escobar? Probably one of the 2 to 3 best defensive shortstops in MLB. We fretted with his offense this year, yet he is in the top group in OBP and OPS among shortstops. He also was clearly limited by the shoulder injury, which has a fair chance of coming back.

    A stab at Esco’s value to Free Agency IF you had to replace him in Free Agency: 5 years at 10 million a year.

    What would EsSco’s cost be:

    09: 400,000

    10: 400,000 (or 2 million if a “super 2”

    11: 2 million (if super 2, go up based on the higher level of perfomrance to 4)

    12: 5 to 7

    13: 9

  60. exactly…by losing KJ or Esco, we are losing one of our only 4 productive offensive players. We’ll have no power in our lineup, it’ll be just McCann and Chipper and he’ll miss 40 games.

  61. Valuing Escobar versus Peavy and his current contract with the option fixed.

    1. Peavy’s contract will almost certainly get you either Lowe or Sheets. Lowe isn’t worth 5 years at his age, but the same AAV over 3 would probably get that done. It will not get you Sabathia. That would take 5 million more a year.

    2. What is Escobar? Probably one of the 2 to 3 best defensive shortstops in MLB. We fretted with his offense this year, yet he is in the top group in OBP and OPS among shortstops. He also was clearly limited by the shoulder injury, which has a fair chance of coming back.

    A stab at Esco’s value to Free Agency IF you had to replace him in Free Agency: 5 years at 10 million a year.

    What would EsSco’s cost be:

    09: 400,000

    10: 400,000 (or 2 million if a “super 2”

    11: 2 million (if super 2, go up based on the higher level of performance to 4)

    12: 5 to 7

    13: 9

    Total cost: 16 million if he is so so, 24 million if he is exceptional. Compared with 50 millin cost to replace. Something doesn’t jive here.

  62. Buster Olney today:

    Many rival executives expect that the Padres will deal Jake Peavy to Atlanta for something very close to this package of players: center field prospect Jordan Schaefer, pitching prospect Tommy Hanson and second baseman Kelly Johnson. Yunel Escobar has been mentioned as a possible piece in this trade, but Braves manager Bobby Cox raves about Escobar. Said one talent evaluator: If you’re Atlanta and you give up Hanson, you’re telling the Padres, ‘You can’t have Hanson and Escobar both.’

    Hanson OR Escobar?

  63. I really like Jake Peavy, but I can’t get over thinking that the Braves would be much better served by dropping 15-17 MM per on A.J. Burnett and keeping the prospects.

    I really just don’t believe that the difference between Peavy and Burnett (all things considered) is worth Hanson, Schafer, and KJ.

  64. Hanson, I guess. There is no way that you can move Escobar with no replacement.

    You could make the offer of Greene/Peavy for Yunel and two lower tier prospects, but then Hanson/Schafer become off limits to the deal

  65. I’m not sure it is either, Ethan, but I think the way you put that sort of understates the importance of the differences between Peavy and Burnett: 4 years of age and roughly 38 innings pitched per season since they became regular starters.

    Burnett did stay healthy this year, but he’s a much bigger injury risk than Peavy, IMO.

  66. Hanson, Schafer and KJ is overpaying for Jake Peavy. Hanson, Schafer and Escobar is sheer lunacy. I agree with Ethan, if that’s the price for Peavy, just go sign Burnett (or Sheets) and keep the players.

  67. #97 – with Dempster, Lowe, Burnett, CC, Sheets all on the market, I would keep the prospects also.

    Who’s our next best infield prospects coming up? Im talking every position also

  68. I’ve been looking through the numerous posts over the last week on the potential Peavy trade, and I don’t understand the infatuation with him. I understand he’s got the favorable contract and the great stuff, but he’s also got this past year when 1) he had the elbow problems, and 2) his road splits were worse than they’d been the previous years. What really irks me about the recent reports on the players to be included in the deal are that they insist on Tommy Hanson.

    Granted, the number of Braves pitching prospects to be successful on the mlb level have been few and far between the past 15 years (Millwood, Wainwright, Schmidt, to name a few), and several recent prospects have been highly over-rated despite good minor league stats (Davies and Chuckie), but none of them have been the power pitcher with potentially FOUR major-league pitches and good control like Hanson. This has been discussed ad naseum on talking chop, and I really think it should be a deal-breaker for Atlanta.

    I understand you have to give some to get some, but I agree with Robert, Cliff, and the like on the fact that you’re a) creating more holes by giving up so much and b) not addressing the present holes. Even if we get Peavy and sign a Burrell/Dunn in the offseason (which is all we could afford to do if we make this trade), you’ve still got below-average production in CF, RF, and 2B/SS (depending on who is thrown in with the deal), as well as the 1/4th of the season where you won’t get production from McCann and Chipper.

    There’s no definite plan outlined from Braves management right now, and I’d have to think that the theory that Bobby has a lot of input into personnel decisions has some truth to it. At some point, you have to cut your losses and commit to rebuilding; current payroll dictates this.

    Just my two cents’ worth to this already good discussion….

  69. Keep in mind that Peavy is clearly a better value than any of those FAs, though, csg. He’s either younger, healthier, better, cheaper, or some combination of those.

    Also keep in mind that getting Peavy allows us to sign another one of those guys, too, and still have money for a good LF, whereas we probably couldn’t sign two of those guys and have the same available funds.

    I dunno. This is tough for me. I wouldn’t have expected Peavy to cost one of our best major leaguers and two of our top 3 minor leaguers (and the only two elite talents near major-league ready).

    As I’ve discussed with AAR, if you trade prospects for a star, you know you’re gambling on the future but significantly increasing your present-day chances for success. But when you include one of the better pieces of your major league club in such a deal, are you increasing your present-day chances for success enough to make the accompanying gamble on the future worth it?

  70. There is no guarantee Burnett will be a free agent, Lowe seems a lock for Boston, Dempster is the Cubs’ top offseason priority and Sheets is perpetually hurt.

    At the end of the day, I trust the Braves’ front office. They’re not stupid. They have a bigger interest in making sure they get the Peavy trade right if they do it than anyone here on this blog.

  71. One interesting aspect to the Peavy trade discussion is to look at his player comps.
    They are good: Beckett, Zambrano, Webb. Top of the craft.
    But even more interesting is that there are no “immortals”, no HOF players. Except for the comparison with Smoltz at age 25.
    He’s a top player. Can’t win big without them.
    But nobody I’m willing to bet the farm on. Anything with Hanson is too steep.

  72. Double post!
    My friend raves about the job Pete does with APBA’s Broadcast Blast. I’ll miss Pete.

  73. Beckett, Zambrano and Webb are all young and on HOF-type career trajectories.

    Peavy is one of the best pitchers in baseball! If you’re afraid of creating more holes than you patch, that’s one thing, but you shouldn’t be against a Peavy trade because you don’t think he’s elite. He is.

  74. At the end of the day, I’d rather punt on 2009, get Burnett and a big bat in this winter and reassess things at the end of the season than make that trade.

    Say we got Burnett at $15m per year, Ordonez at $18m per year. That leaves about $12m with which to get Ohman, a backup catcher and leave room at the trade deadline if we need to make a move.

    After 2009, we’ll have a better idea on what to do with Francoeur, we should have Hudson back, Schafer and Hanson should have contributed at the major league level, all our prospects will have advanced a level closer to the bigs and we’ll be able to make a decision on what pitcher to get then.

    I think that trade would overvalue the need to have an ace as opposed to young, controllable talent.

  75. Stu,

    I agree that Burnett is probably a greater injury risk. But everything I’ve looked at so far seems to imply that the injury risk with Peavy is substantial. Granted, it could end up being nothing, and one could say that with almost every pitcher, but to give up arguably the best SP and CF prospects in the game (which are both areas of need for this team) when there is a viable alternative seems questionable at best.


    Freddie Freeman at 1st
    Travis Jones at 2nd
    Brandon Hicks at SS
    John Gilmore at 3rd (althought Van Pope and Eric Campbell are in the mix as well)

  76. A deal with Hanson and Scheafer along with KJ (or some minor league MI) for Peavy and a minor leaguer sound fair to me.

    We are not sure what Hanson will be, but we know what Peavy is.

    Just remember one thing: Andy Marte.

  77. “Keep in mind that Peavy is clearly a better value than any of those FAs, though, csg. He’s either younger, healthier, better, cheaper, or some combination of those.”

    Stu, good point, but you also have to keep in mind his splits. He has a career 3.80 era away from home. He’s battled shoulder and elbow problems the past two years. Dont get me wrong, he’s a top 2-3 pitcher in baseball when healthy and at home. Im just a little concerned that we are overpaying. When every executive says your a frontrunner that has to tell you that no one is even coming close to the price your paying for the guy.

    I want to add him to our rotation, but we shouldnt create more holes to do it. Honestly, I could see Hanson and Schafer having a good spring and making the club, thats not too far-fetched.

  78. OK, let’s settle down. Maybe Towers is just trying to bump up the offers by telling the rest of the league that the Braves have offered this ridiculous package. I mean, aren’t the Braves notorious for not letting deals leak to the press?

  79. Alex,

    I agree. Shouldn’t have thrown it out. He’s always just one of the names you hear get tossed around.

  80. Smitty,
    I don’t mind including Hanson or Schafer in the deal. It’s KJ or Escobar that would make it a bad deal for Atlanta. There are no replacements ready unless you want Prado or Lilibridge (or Khalil) playing every day. No thanks.

    Now if the deal is Hanson, Schafer and one of Lili or Prado, I’m cool with that.

  81. I want to win and get to a WS as much as anyone, but there just has to come a point when you cant keep making 3-1, 4-1, or 5-2 type trades, esp when your not a big player in the FA market anymore. Bobby is always trying to win now and you cant blame him for that. However, when you only have two starters (JJ and ???Campillo), no productive OF’s, and your about to give up your best two prospects and a position player, you have to be somewhat realistic about our chances next season. Peavy would help, but Im sure KJ, Schafer, and Hanson would also…you have to rebuild with our payroll situation at some point

  82. I’m flipping from a get-Peavy-at-any-cost mode to a get-Peavy-if-Shaffer-and-a-couple-of-prospects-other-than-Hanson-are-enough stance. I wish you guys would quit changing my mind.

    If one of Yesco or KJ are essential for the Padres along with the not-Hanson prospects, I’d now pass on Peavy, increase efforts to sign Lowe or Dempster and see if we could pry Maggs away from the Tigers for a lesser prospect price.

    Also, if Shaffer doesn’t go in some combination for Peavy, centerfield is his to lose in spring training.

  83. Stu @107
    I guess I’m dumb enough to argue with a Vandy lawyer…
    For a given value of “elite”, I think he’s at the top of his class, or cohort, or whatever.
    But for the value of the currently discussed price, I’d much rather have seen names like Clemens, Maddux, or Seaver.
    Players comps are just froth on the beer anyway.

    Go Hoosiers. Tap that keg!

  84. I guess I’m dumb enough to argue with a Vandy lawyer…

    You would not be the first to succeed against this one. (Besides, I’m technically a UGA lawyer–VU was undergrad.)

  85. Hanson is the new Andy Marte.

    How do you know? People love citing Marte and ludicrously concluding from that example that all highly-regarded prospects are going to end up sucking.

    What if Hanson is the new John Smoltz?

  86. If the Braves trade for Peavy they’ll have to sign another free agent starter in addition because one guy is not enough. I think that is the plan.

    The rotation would be:
    Free Agent

    If Smoltz can come back healthy in June or so and be effective, that would be outstanding.

    The Braves need at least one power hitting outfielder as well, though that shouldn’t be as hard to find.

  87. How do you know?

    I didn’t mean it in that Hanson will be a bust. I mean that people here are saying that someone is a “can’t-miss” and that the Braves’ future is totally doomed if said player is traded for anyone.

  88. At the end of the day, I trust the Braves’ front office.

    What has Frank Wren done to merit your trust?

  89. I see, Dan. I think you overstate your case just a bit, though. I’m not sure many would have any problem trading Hanson for Peavy straight up, so it’s not just that we can’t lose Hanson. The issue, as I see it, is that we’re giving up several really valuable parts—and make no mistake, Hanson is really valuable—for one player.

  90. My projection of Hanson’s bottom and top.

    Bottom: He is good enough to bring up as a #5 in June after arb day. He is good enough to be a solid # 3 by beginning of 2012. He stays that until free agency.

    That is 6.6 years for roughly 24 million.


    He is a solid looking 4 at the end of spring training 2009 “with a bullet”. He is a Solid 3 by 2010, solid 2 by 2011, solid 1 by 2012.

    You get 6 years prior to free agency at 34 million (on this much better performance).

    AND, if he totally blows his arm out, goes druggie, slices his wife, you release him at the end of the year with no further obligation.

    Sounds like a better buy than Peavy to me.

    I say, KJ (and I like KJ, but we do have some cheap better than half ass 2b’s around), Schaefer and JoJo Reyes and maybe a filler. DON’T SEND HANSON OUT. DON’T SEND ESCO OUT.

    AND, IF GREENE COMES BACK TO ATLANTA, THAT IS A NEGATIVE. Don’t do like the Tigers and take one you shouldn’t want (Dontrelle?) without considering it to be a negative.

  91. Oh,

    And the difference in money between Hanson and Peavy would pay half of CC. The other half wouldn’t cost any players.

    If Peavy wants to lock down to go to Atlanta and the Padres will take a deal like the skeptics on this thread are proposing, do it. Don’t trade the elite.

  92. What has Frank Wren done to merit your trust?

    Well he was the General Manager during the time of the Renteria for Jurrjens trade.

    Regardless of that, I think that Wren, more than me or you or anyone here, has much more of a vested interested in getting any possible Peavy deal right. And I think he knows more about the Braves’ minor league system and its players than we do. Am I wrong?

  93. So, do people here think that we are definitely going to be able to sign one of Lowe, Burnett, Sabathia, Sheets if we decide to go hard after them? Everyone else is going to go hard after them as well, and a lot of teams are in a lot better position to win than we are. You have to expect at least one of them is going to the Yankees and another one of them will stay with their current team. That’s my prediction anyway. If the Dodgers don’t get Peavy, I expect one of them to end up in L.A.. I feel like if we opt for a UFA pitcher, we’re only going to have a realistic shot at one, and if we miss, we’re up a creek.

  94. Well he was the General Manager during the time of the Renteria for Jurrjens trade.

    It’s common knowledge that Schuerholz constructed that deal long before Wren ever took over.

    The Infante/Ohman for Jose Ascanio was a good deal. Other than that, though, most of Wren’s moves have been off the mark. I’m hoping for the best, but I’m far from confident.

    And yes, the Braves obviously know their minor league system better than anyone here. That doesn’t make them infallible from making poor decisions.

  95. Can we move Escobar and get Peavt then sign Furcal?

    I think a solid leadoff hitter is what we have been missing. We would still have to sign an outfielder and another starter.

  96. replacing high value/cost ratio players with high dollar free agents is exactly what the Braves do not need to do.

  97. The world’s greatest number 1 ace pitcher might start less than 40 games in a 162 game season. That’s fewer games than even Chipper will play. Jake Peavy is a stud, but he’s only one stud. If he started and won 40 games next year, the Braves still must win, say, 50 more games to squeeze in the playoffs as the wildcard or NL East champ.

    Conventional wisdom and recent history say you can’t win without pitching. You also don’t win with a two-man staff and fill-ins. Peavy, JJ, Hampton (?), Campillo, and the fifth starter du jour don’t sound too terrible. If JJ won 15-20 games, could the other three win 30 to 35? Maybe, but only if they don’t need to hold the opposition to two runs a game.

    Given better-than-league-average pitching from the above or equivalent prospective rotation, who’s left to provide offense after we trade Yunel or KJ? Our best two hitters ideally might start 140 games. We’ll be lucky to get that from Chipper; and if BMAC logs another massive workload next season behind the plate, it will probably not be in the Braves or Heap’s long term best interests. For argument’s sake, let’s trade KJ as the lesser of two evil scenarios and get Burrell or Dunn. How does the lineup stack up?

    Leading off in centerfield, Anderson/Blanco; batting second, Yunel; third (for 80 – 130 games), Chipper and for 30 – 80 games, maybe Infante (?); clean-up, BMAC or Dunn or Burrell; fifth, see clean up; sixth, Kotchman; seventh, French Dip, and eighth, Prado or Lillibridge. You could hit Prado second and hit Yunel sixth if it made you feel better.

    Does this team win the East? The Wild Card?

    Poor Wren. Let’s see him turn this pig’s ear into a silk purse.

  98. I don’t like this deal being spoken of. We’d be getting screwed if we gave up Hanson, Schafer, and KJ/Escobar. Pass.

  99. So, I was just going back to look at some old prospect lists to demonstrate that, five years later, Hanson might look like nothing.

    Well, unfortunately, I think he’s a consensus top 30 but not top 10 type guy, and after looking at a few lists, a lot of those guys are doing quite well. More than I had thought, really.

    So while I’d say its certainly too early to think he’s an ace and that he’s certainly got time to become nothing more than a 5th starter, he’s probably going to be at least a passable big-league starter for a solid couple of years.

    But lets be realistic here. There’s like a 1 out of 10 shot that this guy becomes Jake Peavy for us. He’s going to give up homeruns at the big-league level, and that means it’s going to be difficult for him to succeed unless he’s striking a lot of guys out and walking very few.

    Also, someone was asking when the last time that the Braves developed a pitcher with 4 ML-level pitches and good control. Well, that one’s actually quite easy: Charlie Morton, who I’m really extra-hoping the Braves don’t move in this deal. In fact, I’d rate Morton only slightly behind Tommy Hanson as far as young Braves pitchers go. Morton’s numbers (and scouting reports) were as good as Hanson’s all last year in the minors, with fewer walks and fly balls balancing out the lower number of strikeouts. Morton was older but was also playing in AAA instead of A+ or AA ball. So I guess the last thing I want is to lose both of these guys. :-)

    Anyhow, I guess I’m right on the fence regarding a Hanson/Schafer/KJ for Peavy/Greene deal. I see it as a pretty good move for the Padres, in whose park I think Hanson and Schafer’s value will be maximized, and I do think Peavy would be a great addition to the Braves roster, allowing them to add another mid-level pitcher and a power bat for the OF all while not losing a whole lot at the ML level (while Prado will clearly be worse at 2B thank KJ, I’m still optimistic about Khalil Greene’s upside offensively, and if KJ can handle 2B, I’m sure this converted SS could).

    I’d rather give up a few more prospects than Kelly Johnson, but this deal seems like a good fit for both sides.

  100. Furcal, no thanks

    say this posted on mlb rumors, doesnt mean much and I havent checked the numbers….

    Pitcher A is 22 years old, 6’6 210. This season in the minors he was 11-5 with a 2.41 ERA, 163 ks and 52 walks in 138 innings. The league his .175 against him.

    Pitcher B is 22 years old, 6’6 225. This season in the minors he was 12-1 with a 2.30 ERA, 109 ks and 32 walks in 109 innings. The league hit .228 against him.

    Pitcher A is Tommy Hanson. Pitcher B is David Price.

  101. Also, let’s remember that this deal isn’t just for 2009. Jake Peavy is being added for 4-5 years, not just one or two. Just thinking of 2010, with Hudson back and no FA starter, that’s a top 3 of Peavy, Hudson, and Jurrjens. Which is pretty damn good, IMO. Maybe Gorkys or Flowers or Medlen is ready to help at the big league level in some capacity, the bullpen is still looking strong, etc.

    Adding a stud pitcher is one of the top things a team can do to make itself better. Peavy would help not just in 2009, but also in 2010, 2011, etc.

  102. More on the trade:

    Rex (ATL): JIM- can you give a quick assessment of Tommy Hanson, and would you trade a package of him, Jordan Shaffer, and Kelly Johnson for Jake Peavy?

    Jim Callis: (2:11 PM ET ) Hanson is one of the better pitching prospects in the minors, with a live fastball and four pitches that each grade as plus at times. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again–I don’t think the Braves should ship a package of young players to San Diego for Peavy. They got burned on the Teixeira trade and they’re not one pitcher away from being a legit contender. I think they’d regret this deal if they made it.

  103. Time for us to ask the Giants what it would take to get Cain, and the Royals what it would take to get Greinke.

    I know it’s not what the Braves do, but it would be nice if news of those offers were to somehow make their way to the press.

    The Padres are essentially down to two available suitors for Peavy – us and the Dodgers. It wouldn’t do any harm to let them know Peavy isn’t the only person who could help us.

  104. …and they’re not one pitcher away from being a legit contender.

    That is true. But it’s a pretty big first step.

  105. Nope. Nocando. And I’m the one with the biggest hard, er, amount of enthusiasm (that’s better) for Peavy becoming a Brave.

    Our middle infield is our biggest strength and what we build around for the future.

    Keep talking, but neither KJ nor Escobar can be part of any deal.

  106. John (San Fran): Lighting round: Cain or Peavy? Who would net more in a trade?

    SportsNation Jim Callis: (2:49 PM ET ) I’d rather have Cain.

    umm, dont know about that one

  107. I’m fine with including Hanson in a Peavy trade, for the simple reason that the Pads have to get at least one elite pitching prospect for an elite pitcher (which, as Stu said, Peavy undoubtedly is). That’s only fair.

    I’m also fine with including either Schafer or KJ, but not both, and certainly not Escobar. It’s clear to me that Yunel is more integral to the future success of the team than is KJ.

  108. csg,

    Callis is also valuing the contract. Cain is still pre-arb (may be ar after this year as a super 2). So his next 4 years will cost about what peavy’s first 2 will cost.

    And again folks, the trainwreck scenarios (crimial behavior, major career ending or limiting injuries, etc.) don’t kill you on young players not under long term contract.

    Braves will be paying Hudson 14 million this year and he MIGHT start 6 games late in the year? And, if the Barves are toast, they get no value for those games and if they are in the thick of a wild card run do you like having a guy just back off surgery taking the hill?

    If you have the people to go cheap and young, go there. Where you don’t have people, (1 starter, 1 good LF bat) go FA. Only trade to increase value or, at even value, swap surpluses to cover deficits.

  109. Agree with Callis.

    Much rather sign a Sheets/Burnett type, pick up an Adam Dunn, let Schafer try to win the CF job and put Blanco as a 4th OF/Defensive replacement (IMO which is where he belongs anyway)

    If they do go for Peavy, I would feel a lot better if they replaced Hanson with Medlin /+ Diamond.

    BTW, I keep hearing all the comments about the great deal the A’s got for signing Mark Ellis for 2 years at 11MM. Am I the only one who thinks that he is not very good. I mean that career lines of .265 .337 .407 for a guy who injured his shoulder at the end of last year might be worth a litlle more than 11MM, but not very much more (at least IMO).

    In any case, I’d much rather have KJ.

  110. Cliff makes a lot of sense.

    I used to love to spend Ted’s money (even though high salaries manifestly translate to higher ticket, parking and concession prices).

    IF (really big IF) we can add two of the pieces we need without giving up anything, I’m all for it.

    Sabathia (or best FA pitcher you can get) and Dunn would cost, what, $40 million per year? Spend it.

    Save the HOT MINOR LEAGUE PROSPECTS until you see how they do as MLBers.

  111. Bobby has to go. He has too much influence in the organization; he is 68 years old and he wants to win now and damn what happens in five years. I was all for going after Peavey but it really looks like Booby is willing to sell the farm to get him.

  112. I don’t think a lot of people are figuring in that Peavy is not that expensive. If the Braves traded for him, they’re sure to add another starter through free agency because the Braves would have the money.

  113. I like KJ, but losing him for Peavy wouldn’t break my heart. Hanson would hurt, but Escobar, IMO, would be a deal-breaker. I don’t trade him. Getting guys like him is too difficult. I believe he’ll be good for a long time. Once he grows up, I think he’ll grow into a near-elite player for his position.

    I’m sure I sound like a broken record here (a digital sampler?), but I fear (perhaps unjustified) that Escobar rubs people in the organization the wrong way. I hope that doesn’t make him just another item in a trade.

  114. @151

    I know defensive prowness translates to a monetary premium for the SS and CF positions, but how does one quantify it out of a 2B, and if so, to what extent?

  115. Braves 14,

    Peavy’s contract IN NO WAY compares to Haren (Phillips on ESPN tried to compare the two). Peavy is significantly below market only next year (at 11 M) then he is like 17 a year until the last option year at 22.

    Plus, if you DON’T move Hanson, the probability that either Hanson or Morton is at least a 3 is very high and you have avoided looking for a Kyle Lohse / Gil Meche

  116. Ethan at 155,

    The various systems estimate how many outs above or below average a player brings about. outs convert to runs. runs convert to games (at about 10 to 1).

    As I remember last year, Tulowitzki hit almost 50 runs saved. Wow!

  117. Johnny at 157,

    Don’t trust anybody with a back injury. I like Furcal, but not way do I count on him.

  118. Furcal will come in at $10m per year even as an injury risk. All of a sudden we’ve gone from getting two starters and an outfield bat to having $25 million and still needing a starter and an outfield bat.

    Why not just get Sabathia and keep the prospects if that’s the plan?

  119. per Bill Shanks….

    Tommy Hanson has to be off the table. […]

    His stats are not the full story. Hanson is a tall (6’6”) right-hander with a solid fastball, an uncle Charlie curveball, a knockout slider, and an improving changeup. The stuff matches the stats, which hasn’t always happened in the Braves’ system the last few years (i.e. Chuck James).

    Plus, Hanson is a bulldog. He’s a tremendous competitor, with a knack to get out of trouble when he actually is in trouble. Hanson’s makeup is what could make him special. He’s driven to be a star in the big leagues.

  120. I think the package of Escobar, Hanson, and Schafer is what the PADRES are seeking. I think they will end up getting one of the three, let’s hope it will be Schafer.

  121. my main issue is that all 3 players are MLB ready for us. Schafer should be ready for CF (better option than Blanco and Anderson) and Hanson should find his way into the rotation. We have no replacement for Yunel

  122. According to Tim Kurjian this morning on ESPN Radio, the Braves so far have not been willing to part with any of their top prospects. That’s good. Hopefully, Wren won’t wreck the farm system to get Peavey; I’m not sure they will need to because the Pads don’t have that many options. On the other hand, if they don’t get a lot, the fan base will revolt. I’m not confident Wren will not screw things up, especially since Bobby wants Peavey and Chipper has also spoken in favor (although, in fairness, he agreed the Braves should not do any more Teixera-like trades. I’m not sure Bobby cares.)

    Of course, from Wren’s standpoint, he has to worry about selling tickets next year in a weak economy. I don’t think that Wren believes that standing pat with a fourth place team and building for 2010 is an option.

  123. Dont have to stand pat when you’ve got $40-45 million to invest in FA players. Peavy will cost $16m per till 2013 (which is very reasonable) but you can get Lowe for that price, prob. Burnett also. You can add Dunn or Burrell to LF. Then you could try to trade for a diff. starter (Cain, Grienke, Sanchez). Wren has plenty of options to address our needs.

    btw, They said that nothing would happen until at least Nov 3-6, so we have about two more weeks of this at the least

  124. So, IF Wren is not willing to part with Hanson/Heyward/Schaefer/Escobar, what will the pads take for Peavey?

    Will a Flowers/Lilli/Morton/other prospect package do it?

  125. KLaw made a blog post about the Peavy rumors this morning. The gist:

    (1) The rumored Hanson/Schafer/KJ package would be way out of line with what recent deals for big name pitchers involved. He considered the Haren deal to be a very similar situation; and

    (2) He doesn’t think Peavy is worth as much as Haren was at the time of the trade, considering his health and fly-ball tendencies.

  126. Does he think Hanson/Schafer/KJ package is too much or too little? I’m assuming he thinks this is too much, but maybe I’m wrong. I don’t mind seeing Hanson and Schafer go, but KJ (a guaranteed cheap above-average MLB regular) is just too much. I’m intrigued with valuing prospects, and I’m curious if his exact thinking on this.

  127. I think you’re wrong about Morton. As for Lillibridge…he might be more valuable than Khalil Greene because he’s not making $6.5 million.

  128. He thinks it’s way too much, JC. He noted that Haren brought the A’s no elite prospects and only one guy that looked to be major-league-ready.

  129. And, Haren was a REAL bargain (something like 4.5 M, 6 M, 8 M) but for two less years.

    Peavy should be valued by career road stats. He plays in a canyon.

    Peavy is the converse of Holliday. You have to translate their stats to the different environment.

  130. per Keith Law…

    • For a half-season of CC Sabathia, Cleveland got one top prospect (Matt LaPorta), an A-ball arm (Rob Bryson, who subsequently hurt his shoulder), a “AAAA” pitcher (Zach Jackson), and a player to be named who did not turn out to be a top prospect.

    • For three years of Dan Haren, signed cheaply, Oakland got one starter with big-league experience (Dana Eveland) and one big-league ready starter (Greg Smith), neither of whom has a high ceiling or is a top prospect. On the minor-league side, they got two top prospects in outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and left-hander Brett Anderson, and two lesser prospects in outfielder Aaron Cunningham (fringe starter or good fourth outfielder) and first baseman Chris Carter (big raw power and a ton of strikeouts, with defensive problems).

  131. Oh, and Haren had no “no trade clause” leverage. In Peavy’s case, that is somewhat good for the Braves, but the “no trade” players always get a kicker to waive that (and in Peavy’s case the change of the last year to a guaranteed year at 22 million rather than an opt out at 4 million is almost certain to have to happen).

  132. Oh, it was two major-league-ready starters.

    Actually, csg, the 6-player package you proposed above looks pretty comparable to that, with maybe a bit less upside but a lot more major-league-readiness.

  133. Cliff, FWIW, DOB said the other day that he didn’t think the Braves would have to guarantee that option year to get a deal done.

  134. @186, csg

    That also looks close the Haren package. I think Peavy gets a slight up for being a little more proven, a slight down for park effect (Oakland is also a canyon, just not as big) a larger down for injury risk, and a down for greater cost relative to the ever increasing market.

    IF this was an 85 win team with slight upside as it is now constructed, I would move Hanson and 2 lesser players for Peavy. Otherwise, not.

    By the way, Peanut has a new article up about Schaffer in the Mexican League. 360 BA, 430 OBP. I would adjust that for league and say it is consistent with the better parts of his minor league season this year.

    Spend MONEY to get players. Do not spend young cheap players with upside to get players (except where you are trading from surplus and addressing deficits).

  135. Looking at Sickels’ 2008 rankings, that’s 3 B+ prospects (he’s higher on Carter than is the average talent evaluator), 1 B-, 1 C+ major-league-ready pitcher, and one already-established ML pitcher.

    Someone correct me, but I think this would be comparable:

    Schafer (B+ at worst—more upside than Gonzalez.)
    Medlen (B or B-.)
    Flowers (B+, if you think he can stay behind the plate.)
    Reyes (Has more upside than Smith or Eveland, I’d think.)
    Something else?

    I’d still love for us to take on Greene to decrease the prospect bounty.

  136. IN theory, it obviously makes sense to spend money rather than give up players. But it’s not that simple. No matter how much money they have, the Braves can’t guarantee that any free agents will sign unless they pay a premium. With a trade, you have more control. You don’t know, for example, if Derek Lowe has any interest in playing in Atlanta (he appears to want back in Boston). (Not to mention that he is 35 and a ground ball pitcher–possibly not the best fit for the Braves.)

    I’m not saying they should necessarily trade for Peavey and certainly not any 4 for 1 including Yunel. But free agency isn’t necessarily a panacea.

  137. Stu, I hate to ruin your morning but I saw something about Bobby Johnson being Clemson’s top choice. Have you heard the same and do you think he’d take it?

  138. I’m hoping there are some old-timers here old enough to either confirm or deny this story (which I desperately hope to be true):

    Yesterday I was talking to someone who was about eight years old when the Braves and Mets played in the ’69 NLCS. A friend of his went to one of the games (the first two were played in ATL). But here’s the catch — he claims to have had a “half-game” ticket. Evidently, there were a couple of sections in the stadium where you could buy a ticket for either the first or second “half” of the playoff games. Presumably, in the fifth inning the first-half spectators were ushered out, and the second-half spectators took their place.

    Does anyone here remember this? I mean, it sounds completely outlandish, but I suppose you could make a few extra bucks this way. There’s no way you could do something like this now, but I love the whole crackpot Veeck-ian nature of it.

  139. jorge,
    Where’d you read/hear that? As of last week, a source who is very close to the situation assured me that Coach Johnson is no higher than 4th or 5th on Clemson’s list.

    I don’t know whether he’d leave if offered the job, but I do know Clemson’s the only position in the country that worries me. I’m confident that only the allure of his alma mater could draw him away from a situation he loves as much as he does Vanderbilt’s.

  140. I’m not sure where “Willy Aybar gets preferred placement over Alan Greenspan decrying free market capitalism” ranks on the improbability scale, but I imagine it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of….actually, I can’t think of anything more improbable.

    Here’s the homepage:


    Here’s the story (for those seeing this after the next layout):


  141. I’m not sure where “Willy Aybar gets preferred placement on the New York Times website over Alan Greenspan decrying free market capitalism” ranks on the improbability scale, but I imagine it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of….actually, I can’t think of anything more improbable.


  142. per DOB

    By David O’Brien

    October 23, 2008 12:49 PM | Link to this

    Flange1, my take on Law’s article is, I agree. I think the Braves might possibly be willing to give up Schafer and Escobar in a deal for Peavy, but not while also giving up Hanson. I know that Hanson is considered close to untouchable by the Braves, so if they do give him up, I really don’t think they’d also be willing to give up Schafer and either Escobar or Kelly.

    If they give up Hanson, I’d think he’d have to be the centerpiece for the Braves in the deal. I doubt they’d also include Schafer, unless they’ve reassessed their thoughts on Schafer (and not said so publicly).

    And I also have doubts whether they’d include Escobar along with Hanson. To me, if it’s Hanson, then the other pieces would probably be lesser prospects and/or current players, or should be….

  143. sorry, now Im just entertaining myself

    *Brad (Georgia): Keith, please tell me that Frank Wren isn’t seriously considering giving up Johnson, Hanson and Schafer. If you were the Braves’ GM, what kind of package would you give up for Peavy?

    Keith Law: (1:17 PM ET ) Atlanta isn’t going to give that up, and it’s not clear that that’s even what the Padres are asking for – that was based on speculation by executives who talked to the NY Post’s Joel Sherman for his article. I went off of that to show that those expectations were outsized. If I was Atlanta’s GM, Hanson and Heyward would be off limits, and I wouldn’t include Escobar. Johnson, Flowers, and maybe a now starter like Reyes or Campillo? Would probably have to add a good A-ball prospect. At that point, you’re talking about something more in line with what Oakland got for Harden.*

  144. The comments about comparable deals for Haren, et. al, I think, miss something. The other guys were either going to be free agents or the teams needed to dump their salaries. I’m not sure that’s true with Peavey; they have him wrapped up and I don’t think they are in any particular financial trouble although getting rid of a large salary is always preferable for a bad team. But I think the Pads are in a position to hold out for more than some of the other teams got because (1) they have Peavey wrapped up for several years at a relatively reasonable money; and (2) the fan base would revolt if they didn’t get a lot in return.

  145. I’d do that too Mac.

    Stu, I don’t have sources and I think I just read some speculation in the print edition of Sports Illustrated.

    And don’t take this the wrong way but can Vanderbilt match what Tennessee can pay a coach? I know we can’t and that’s one of the reason’s we had to endure the horrible gamble that our last head coach was. Easily the worst hire by an SEC program in 20 years.

  146. KJ/Flowers/Jo-Jo/A-Baller? Yeah, I’d do that too. But I still can’t imagine we’ll get Peavy without giving up Hanson and/or Schafer.

    If we lose KJ, and plan on staring Prado, we better have a defensive specialist on the bench. How does Lili handle 2B?

  147. Isn’t their owner in a nasty divorce? I thought that was one of the reasons they were looking to dump payroll besides their terrible record last year and outlook going forward.

    I would definitely do the deal Mac highlighted in post 206.

  148. One aspect of the Peavy conversations I miss is that the Pads want to dump Peavy’s salary. He is making reasonable money for a contender, but they see it as a lot of money for a rebuilding team. They want low paid prospects that will develop into stars.
    If Hanson starts for Atlanta next year, I see him having a similar year as JJ. Say 13 wins. How many more wins will Peavy add? about 3? I say hold onto Hanson, Escobar, KJ etc. Only offer the second line prospects. Medlen, Redmond, Marek, B Jones. If the Padres don’t like it they can look elsewhere.

  149. The problem with trading Johnson or Escobar for Peavy is that while the team gains in pitching it loses in the field. Then you have to replace a good position player. If the team wants to get better it needs to add regular good players without subtracting them. If either of the middle infielders go, then look to see Khalil Greene included in the deal.

    I think the greater lesson from Keith’s comments is that most of these rumors are fueled by wild speculation without much thought.

  150. A-Baller I’d be willing to give up: Eric Campbell. A-Baller I’d jump in front of a train so as not to give up: Freddie Freeman.

    I’m still extremely reluctant to give up KJ, just because the organization’s depth chart doesn’t really suggest another guy who could start there. I dunno, maybe Infante? For some reason, I think KJ may have more value to us than to other clubs.

  151. I’d rather lose Schafer than KJ, and I’d think Schafer would be at least as appealing as KJ to the Pads. Schafer/Flowers/Reyes/A-baller looks good to me.

    Actually, the circumstances surrounding the Haren deal are remarkably similar to those here. The A’s didn’t have to trade Haren, either, but they did because the price was right.

    Vanderbilt certainly could pay whatever Tennessee or Auburn would be willing to–you’re talking about a school with a $3 billion+ endowment which, for example, recently announced that it will cover all need-based financial aid via grants for each of its students from here on out—but whether we would is the real issue. I think they would for Coach Johnson—they’ve already fought off big-time financial suitors multiple times for Corbin and Stallings—but it’s hard to know for sure.

  152. The big four I keep hearing about at Tennessee are Cowher (no), Stoops (probably not), Muschamp (the most likely, and the Boise State guy (I doubt it).

    If Tennessee really wants Johnson, and I honestly don’t think he is on their short list. Money won’t be the reason they don’t land him.

    Tennessee is right up there Bama in big time rich ass boosters that love to spend money on the program. The only down side to that to past few years is they love Fulmer. However, I think they are growing tired of him.

    I like Johnson and think he is a great coach, but Tennessee will try to bring in a bigger name. Not knocking Johnson or the great job he has done at Vandy, but if the Vols make a move it is going to be someone with a lot more clout.

    Just what I am hearing up here.

  153. Smitty,
    Whether UT wants him or not, trust me when I tell you that VU would not be the least bit worried about Johnson taking a job in Knoxville.

  154. Kentucky +25?

    It hurts my blue heart to say this, but I think that’s pretty close.

    Our defense is better this year, but two of our studs are hurt.

    Our offense is bad. I mean, it’s Bill Curry bad.

    And, like Spurrier (damn it), Urban Cryer toys with Rich Brooks like a cat with a chipmunk.

    If this were in Lexington and if we were healthy, I’d bet the house on my Cats. But in the Swamp?

    Feh, be careful, my friends.

  155. Dreams die hard, but unless the Padres will take a package that does not include Yunel, KJ or Hanson, then I’m against it.

    Those three (along with McCann) are our immediate future and it’s just suicide to move any of them without 100% surething replacements.

    Spend the money, but keep the prospects.

    And, remember – the Padres are not moving Peavy for the future, they’re moving him for money. I still think Francouer has enough out-of-market “Q” to make a deal sound better to the receiving team’s fanbase.

    Heh heh.

  156. There’s also no reason the deal has to be done right now. The season doesn’t start in November. Let the Padres look around and see if they can do better. I’d rather take the chance that they can than give up too much prematurely. If they really do need to dump him and the Braves are one of the few teams he will go to, there is no need to rush.

  157. I was borderline willing to do a package centered around Hanson and Schafer. If we can get it done without giving up Hanson or any big leaguer, I’d be totally down with it. Heck, if they really want a MI, why not toss them Martin Prado? Sure, he’s not a REAL 2B, but the Padres might not notice. :-)

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