Blaine Boyer

It looks like he’s made the team, and he has been pitching well this spring. Boyer has essentially been rehabbing for three years. He went down late in 2005 — ultimately leading to the Joey Devine Experience in postseason — and has been trying to work his way back ever since. At times last year, especially early in the season, he was effective, but Bobby just kept throwing him out there, pitching him on little rest even at times when he wasn’t effective. In July, he had fifteen appearances despite a 7.82 ERA. In August, it was fourteen and 7.94. I know that the bullpen was thin, but there really is no justification for using any pitcher like that, and certainly not a pitcher coming off shoulder surgery.

If the 2005 Boyer, who looked like potential closer material, puts in an appearance, he can be a real asset. I have my doubts that that player still exists. Whether he does or not, it is incumbent on the manager to use him gently and not try to pile appearances on him… Big problem last year was home runs, ten of them. He allowed only one in 2005, in about half the innings. He was probably a bit hit-unlucky.

Blaine Boyer Statistics – Baseball-Reference.com

232 thoughts on “Blaine Boyer”

  1. from the last thread:
    By the way, Otis Nixon’s wikipedia page says he played for the US cricket team. There’s no way that’s true, right? I did a cursory google search and there didn’t seem to be anything but people repeating wikipedia’s claim.
    But if he did, we need to find pictures immediately.

    As far as Boyer is concerned, why haven’t we used him as a starter? There’s got to be some kind of reason. He was starting in the minors when he got called up the first time and doing a good job. He’s pretty good when he locates his fastball keeps his curveball down…but so is anybody.

  2. I like Boyer and think he can be a quality reliever. He got tired last year, and if there had been anyone, ANYONE at all to look at instead, could have been DLed or at least rested once in a while. This year, with Soriano and Moylan pitching, he should have a lot less pressure on him. Add in Medlen and Marek as options in the minor leagues, and the Braves have enough insurance to not over-work Boyer.

  3. Boyer had a very good K/BB ratio and K/9 IP ratio, which I think is more indicative of how he performed as a reliever than his ERA.

    If he keeps the ball in the park and his arm doesn’t fall off, he’s a good pitcher.

  4. Did I miss something? What’s the basis for saying it looks like Boyer made the team? Is it just a good spring or something like a statement from Cox?

  5. Got ya. Thanks.

    I still don’t see the point in signing Glavine if it means dealing Campillo or one of the young pitchers. Save the cash for a mid-season pick up.

  6. Signing Glavine doesn’t make us deal Campillo, it gives us the flexibility to deal Campillo (or Carlyle but most likely Bennett) if we get a good enough offer.

    I’ve never seen so many people moan so much about such a relatively inconsequential signing.

  7. Hey guys, I joined a league that is still looking for one more guy. If you’re interested in playing in an ESPN, weekly, draft league, e-mail me at robertcopenhaver -at- clearwater dot edu. If you want more info, e-mail too.

  8. I’m not sure how I feel about the new Marlins stadium. I kind of like the Braves being in a division with two basket case franchises.

  9. billy-jay, I echo those sentiments a thousand times over. The Miami Marlins are not a good thing for the Atlanta Braves. They’ve won both ways, spending a crapload and not spending any, I would have to think the Miami version would settle somewhere in the middle, which would make them damn competitive. My only hope is that with their ‘new revenue streams’ they lock up more Mike Jacobs types than they do Hanley Ramirez types.
    Even with the new stadium, I can’t imagine they are going to be able to afford too many Hanley types once they reach ‘true’ free agency (by that I mean, not just buying out a year or two of free agency, I mean Hanley’s second contract.)

    Reading Mac’s responses to FJM, (which I hope will be renamed Fire Mike Rizzo who I actually really like from his DBacks days) would it be the craziest idea to trade for Willingham on the cheap, platoon him with Garrett Anderson, or whatever he’s called around here, and platoon Diaz with Kotchmania at first ? Or would it work better platooning Willingham with Kotchman ? I guess I’m not really sold on Casey having a bat, but maybe that’s just me and he just needs to get away from Mickey Hatcher.

  10. @10

    weldon,

    bennett isn’t worth a wet bag of fireworks. what makes you think we could get anything for him? obviously you see something i don’t.

  11. Add in Medlen and Marek as options in the minor leagues, and the Braves have enough insurance to not over-work Boyer.

    If he’s effective, he’ll get overworked, that’s just Bobby. Relief pitchers are there to be burned. What you want to say is that we have better fallback options this year when the overworked guys start going down. Maybe that’s true, I have no idea.

  12. It’s a hopeless exercise to try and predict what this bullpen will do. Everybody is either injury-prone, completely unproven, or professionally mediocre. I will say I have more faith in this collection of relievers than I had in our starting rotation heading into ’08, for what that’s worth.

  13. Wasn’t Boyer a starter in the minors and they moved him to the bullpen because he wasn’t very good?

  14. Smitty,
    Pretty sure he was always planned for the bullpen. As I recall, the organization started him some in the minors to build stamina and work on secondary pitches, but always intended to move him to the ‘pen. Remember, he was basically a right fielder with a strong arm but very little pitching experience in high school.

  15. That’s very sad about John Brattain. I really enjoyed reading his stuff. His family will be in my prayers.

    Blaine Boyer is the man, and I hope Bobby hasn’t ruined him.

  16. In other news, I naturally always want Florida to beat Tennessee. But after watching Lane Kiffin talk about Florida again, I hope we hang a 70 spot on UT this year. What a clown.

  17. I wouldn’t get too worried about the Marlins yet, considering where they are building the stadium (downtown where the Orange Bowl was). Having lived in Miami, I can tell you it’s a bad location with no public transportation to the game. Attendence will certainly improve, but it’s not going to make them a cornerstone franchise–unless the stadium causes the area to go upscale or something. Plus, Miami is generally not a good sports town and, even though the stadium will have a roof, going anywhere in Miami in the summer is like a trip into Hell.

  18. @20,

    That’s right. I remember now.

    @23
    There are people here who have been saying “Lane should shut his mouth because the Gators will run up the score on us.” I always answer with a, “like they don’t already?”

    I think is great he says they things that he does and they get blown out of context. It is the polar opposite of Fulmer. It adds to the rivalry. I suggest the Gators work hard on beating the Vols this year, becasue soon Tennessee is going to be reloaded.

  19. I actually pity the Tennessee fans. 95% of them realize how awful their coaching hire(s) look(s) right now and are terrified of the future, but 100% of them feel like they have to act like they’re supremely confident and that the SEC had better watch out. I mean, nobody is fooled, yet UT fans keep pretending they’re this awakening giant.

  20. And also, not to diminish the quality of David Oku and Bryce Brown, both highly coveted recruits, but I’ve been quite amused at all the chest thumping UT fans are doing about those two. They still didn’t sign a quarterback or decent offensive lineman, which was the cause of their pathetic offense last year…their running backs were actually good.

    Not so bold predictions: They still suck on offense next year, Kiffen provides weekly meltdowns at his press conferences for us all to enjoy, and Bryce Brown does something douchey along the way.

  21. Kiffin the Gottfried of football? Good recruiter, cant develop his players (time will tell), will get outcoached in every game?

  22. Whatever you think about UT’s offense, their defense should be pretty good next year. I don’t think they’ll have the athletes to stop UF completely, but I do expect Tennessee to win a couple 10 to 7 or 9 to 6 games this year.

  23. I wouldn’t disagree with that. But I would point out that their defense was pretty good last year too. If they don’t see improvement on the o-line and at the QB position, well, it’s gonna be another long year for the vols. Should be fun to watch.

    Eric Berry will be one of the best players in the country again, though, obviously.

  24. Also, if the expectation is a bunch of low scoring games, is there any evidence that Kiffen is the kind of crafty game manager that can grind out W’s?

    Again, I’m not saying they won’t get the program back on track down the road. But I really, really don’t see it for UT this year.

  25. Stu,

    I am not sure 95% of UT’s think this is a bad hire. So far it has been a great hire. Why wouldn’t we act like this is going to be a good thing. So far he has landed a great coaching staff and netted some big time recruits. Tennessee has lacked in fundamentals for years and has lacked in the toughness department. Both of those things seem to be changing according to the reports coming out of practice.

    I am not sure what is going to happen

    Douglass,

    The Vols did need to land some O-line men. We had a QB coming, but Kiffin shyed away from him because he wasn’t a prostyle. Tennessee will land a abig QB prospect this year. I think he wants to bring in his own guy.

    Part of UT’s struggle on offense last year wasn’t due to lack of talent. I think the system (zone blocking, not using the recievers right) is what killed them. The playeers are responsilbe, but most of them were returning starters from a very good offensive unit.

    I think 9 wins would be a good first year. Anything under 7 and the first wave of Tennessee fans calling fo his head will start.

    Also, we are talking Tennessee Football in march. When was the last time that happened?

  26. Oh, surely one of the many UT football arrests that has been made over the past several years occurred in March.

  27. Smitty, maybe that was the plan all along, but he didn’t suck as a starter. I seem to remember that we used him as a starter in Richmond to make sure he got work in, but looking at his minor league stats, he started all year in Myrtle Beach in 2004. He pitched well, too, posting a sub-3 ERA and a WHIP of 1.21. That is a big ballpark, though, and it’s just high-A.

    dirt, I posted that before looking at the box score from last night. Bennett got roughed up pretty badly. But..uhh..we do still have Carlyle and Campillo who I think could net us something decent.

  28. IMO, Fulmer was a paranoid and classless jerk, but he tried to downplay this in the image he presented to the public. So far, Kiffen hasn’t tried to hide the fact that he has no class. I’m not sure which is better.

  29. Anthony Grant is in Tuscaloosa right now, btw. Will be offered the Bama job.

    I really, really hope Bama can land him.

  30. I remain unconvinced that Anthony Grant will be a successful high-major coach. Good recruiter, but a very shaky game coach, IMO. I think Bama would be better off sticking with Pearson.

  31. I don’t see how you can Tennessee hired a great staff when the hired Ed Orgeron. The worst coach in the last 30 years of the SEC.

  32. Outside of Monte Kiffen, all of the prestige of the UT staff relates to recruiting. Kiffen the younger, Orgeron, L. Thompson, even Eddie Gran….none of them have ever been known for x’s and o’s or gameday coaching. They all however have quite the track records recruiting. You have to give them that.

    We’ll see how it works out on the field though.

  33. from MLBTR:
    “Alex Speier of WEEI projects Boston’s Opening Day payroll to be under $120MM, its lowest since ’03. Speier suggests this could allow mid-season financial flexibility.”

    While that’s not chump change, it’s pretty impressive (and scary) considering the team they have (and that it’s only a couple good players worth more than the Braves spent last year)

  34. I’m guessing that doesn’t take into account all the incentive money provided for in contracts to Penny, Smoltz, Saito, etc.

    Still, yeah, that’s a smart organization.

  35. Kiffin just likes to make a fool of himself so us fans of other SEC schools can laugh.

  36. Jorgbacca,

    Ed Orgeron may have sucked as a head coach, but I think most people would agree that he is one hell of a D-line coach and recruiting coordinator.

    I agree with Stu, I would stick with Pearson.

  37. well Anthony Grant is in Tuscaloosa today and most people believe he’ll be offered the job. He’d be a good hire, Id like for Mike Anderson to come but all those bridges have been burned after the UAB fiasco I believe

  38. Following Orgeron’s recruiting very closely for three years I can tell you that it is mostly smoke and mirrors. He’s the product of hype from working under Pete Carroll when USC signed anyone and everyone he wanted. Once he came to Ole Miss it was a different story and he was stuck signing marginal prospects and a few decent ones with questionable grades because that’s all he could get. He signed a big time players but not any more than even David Cutcliffe was able to do and not as many as Houston Nutt did last year. He only even signed one class at Ole Miss that made the top 25 by the recruiting rankings.

    He also had these numbers that put Ole Miss on virtual probation of scholarship numbers.

    In 2007 despite having 25 scholarships to give he only signed 23 players including one Juco punter late in the summer who has yet to play. Of course when many didn’t make their grades we were even farther away from having a full 85 scholarship team and virtually on probation.

    Of Orgeron’s 23 2007 signees, 9 were not on campus in a year either from never making their grades or dropping out/transferring. So that means only 61% of his signees made it to campus. Meaning he has to ask for every single player to pan out and not be a bust. This also included the bump from signing 4 star Roderick Davis and 5 star A.J. Jackson that never qualified and 4 star Chris Strong that didn’t make it a semester.

    In 2006, the “good year,” Orgeron signed 30 and only 23 were on campus within a year. 76 % making it. The closest he ever got to having a full 25. The recruiting numbers were also greatly enhanced by signing 4 stars Aubury McPhadden and Terry Levy that didn’t make it in, and 5 stars Brent Schaeffer and Jerrell Powe (getting the big 5 star bonus for the second time in two years from Powe alone despite Powe failing to make it for another two years)

    In 2005 his transition class he signed 28 players. 15 of them didn’t make it a year. That means he found contributors in only 46%. Again that’s not counting busts who are still on the roster or have used up their eligibility.

    In three signing classes Orgeron brought in 8 high school offensive lineman.

    In three years Orgeron never signed a tight end that dressed for a game.

    The criticism that was exposed in Meat Market was that Orgeron would offer kids with stars from the recruiting services just because of their stars and not because of film, their talent, or anyone else’s evaluation. He hoped if he signed someone with stars than it would rate his class higher and that would help with kids he wanted. He said he didn’t care whether or not someone else offered because he wanted to be the first to offer with hopes the player would remember that.

  39. Sorry for the long post. My angst for Orgeron is similar to the all the posters combined for Francoeur.

  40. @46,

    After watching Kearns for three years, I say don’t bother. He is really a fourth outfielder at this point.

  41. @51

    I don’t know if you saw Ole Miss beat the National Champions this year and kick the shit out of Texas Tech in the Cotton Bowl or the preseason top 10 ranking they have. Nutt is winning with his players.

    Since he has been the recruiting coordinator at Tennessee (less than three months) he pulled in a top ten class getting guys that Fulmer (who was a great recruiter) had no shot at getting (Jackson, Brown, so on…)

    The man can recruit.

  42. @53

    Then we should get him. He would fit in with all the other “outfielders” we aready have.

    A team of fourth outfielders!

  43. Yes I saw Ole Miss beat Florida and present for the Cotton Bowl victory.

    For your Nutt only did it with Orgeron recruits; argument.
    4 out of 6 contributors on the offensive line were Cutcliffe guys. The other were a defensive tackle that Nutt moved to center and future first round draft pick that was adopted by a member of the Ole Miss All Century Basketball team. The only way he wasn’t going to Ole Miss was if Orgeron screwed it up; which he almost did according to The Blind Side. The top running back was lead the back in rushing touchdowns one of Nutt’s true freshman. The tightend that scored two touch downs in the Cotton Bowl was a Juco transfer that Nutt brought in.

    The star of the defense and the other probable first round draft pick was a Cutcliffe signee as was the second leading tackler.

    However all defensive starters were also on Orgeron’s last team. However they had 38 sacks and 111 tackles for a loss last year compared to 21 sacks and 80 tackles for a loss in Oregron’s last year. They also only gave up 19 points per game against Orgeron’s 28.5.

  44. His personality cost his teams as many big names as he brings in. Marlon Brown said in the Commercial Appeal that Orgeron was the reason he went to Georgia and not Tennessee.

  45. @51

    I was actually worried Anderson would bolt for awhile, but the word up here is that an extension is done and will be announced whenever the season is over. (hopefully a few weeks from now, but Memphis followed by UCONN is a gauntlet)

    @53

    No to Kearns, yes to Willingham. Though I don’t know where he’d play. It would give us four outfielders (Frenchy, Ganderson, Diaz, Hammer) for two spots?

    It’s too bad we couldn’t trade Frenchy straight up for him…

  46. On the bullpen situation:
    According to Gammons Ohman is asking for 2MM, I don’t understand why we can’t bring him back. That’s a small price to pay to completely solidify our bullpen that looks strong but only really needs a lefty setup man. It seems like our two lefties are competing to be the lefthanded setup man at AAA (although I believe O’flaherty will hit the waiver wire if he doesn’t make the team). I wonder if JoJo reyes is being viewed as an option, he might gain a mile per hour or two on his fastball and be more effective if he only needed to use two pitches… I’m not too worried about boyer being overworked if we really will have Gonzo, Soriano, Moylan and Campillo, not to mention a rotation full of relative horses compaired to last year.

    On the outfield situation: I suppose I’m rooting for Janderson to take the CF job, at least until June or so, giving us an extra year of Schafer and allowing him to tighten up his game a touch. I’ve been impressed with Brandon Jones performance this spring, I’m starting to feel like he could match Ganderson’s performance in platoon with Diaz. Regardless, the future of our OF looks pretty bright. Between Heyward, Schafer, Gorkys, B Jones, and Blanco we have a versatile and athletic bunch that could prove to be a solid group for years to come. The only issue I have with our lack of right handedness. I could see our 2011 lineup including Scahafer, KJ, Heyward, Freeman, McCann, BJones, Yunel and Chipper…That is SO lefthand heavy, even if you got rid of say B Jones and included the righthanded Gorkys hernandez, you’d be adding a top of the lineup speed guy, when we need a right handed bopper to break up the lefties in the middle of the order.

  47. Also, Orgeron is a twit.

    Maybe, but if you just want him to coach defense and recruit, you really can’t go wrong. Of all the coaches SC has lost in the Carroll era, Orgeron is the one most would want back.

    Kiffen is the one that the fewest folks would want back. A train wreck as an offensive coordinator, scant X and O knowledge, and of course an embarrassment waiting to happen when he opens his mouth. If/when it goes badly at Tennessee, absolutely no Trojan fans will be surprised. Al Davis was an absolute hero a few years back when he took Kiffen off our hands, and now some school not only went out and brought him back to the college game but has put him in charge.

  48. Weldon (from the previous thread and a very late reply) –

    I don’t think that Blanco is preferred over Janderson, but I don’t think it’s as clear of a decision as everyone makes out. To me, defense is the tie-breaker which makes me lean towards Janderson.

    I am still undecided and keeping my eye on this because:

    1. Blanco has shown more power than Janderson this spring. Throw in his Winter League performance and it’s not such a small sample size.

    2. We all know that Janderson just won’t take a walk.

  49. DOB reporting that Wren just found out that Soriano has a strained side (oblique?) muscle. Dont know how long he’s had it or how bad it is. Says people in the org are getting very tired of Soriano’s act

  50. @62

    If you want Orgeron to coach defense then yes it can go wrong and in fact did go horribly wrong.

    As I pointed out above when Orgeron was the head coach at Ole Miss he gave up 28.5 points per game. Tyrone Nix took that same group and cut the points per game by almost ten points with a 19 points per game average. Orgeron was just as bad a defensive coordinator as he was a head coach in case you forgot that he also served as his own defensive coordinator. His other two years he gave up 23 points per game each. Sacks and tackles for a loss also went up after Orgeron left the program.

  51. Dibble on Kawakami: “He doesn’t have great stuff…he’ll pitch away from you…be patient…he can be had”

    Anyone want to give odds on Dibble’s sobriety at the moment…

  52. Dibble is just blowing my mind.

    Kawakami just threw a curve and he yells: “SHUUUUUUTO”

    He’s like a caricature of a real announcer.

    EDIT: latest pearl: “We watch these Asian pitchers and they have a hitch in their delivery and they pitch away from contact”

  53. Gonzo’s getting roughed up… and these announcers are going to drive me insane BUT I’m getting to watch the Braves play!!!

  54. Yeah…plus a few pounds

    RE Gonzo:

    93 MPH on the fastball is pretty good.

    And he made Dunn look stupid…

  55. I can’t say that having seen Dunn in the WBC games and this lil bit in spring I’m terribly broken up by us not getting him… of course I’ve not had to watch our outfield not get hits enough to change my mind. Willie Harris running for Dunn.

  56. If there was a way that Bobby likes his pitchers to pitch…Charlie is pitching in the exact opposite manner

  57. In spite of his fielding deficiencies, Dunn seems like a great guy.

    I think I’ll add him to the list with Jared Allen of pro athletes it’d be a blast to go out drinking with.

    Plus, 40 HR and .400 OBP covers a lot.

  58. Watching the after game show on MLB and about went blind…

    A close up of Don Zimmer in HD is something that no one should ever have to see. Even JoePoz couldn’t put it into words.

  59. The Braves can’t believe he’s actually hurt, even when he is. I bring your attention, again, to the Magic MRI that didn’t see the actual injury he had last year, and how they decided he was a whiner.

  60. I think the Braves have treated pitching injuries completely different and for the worse since Leo left.

  61. you gotta love his name!

    FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) -The Boston Red Sox have signed right-hander Rocky Cherry to a minor league contract.
    The 29-year-old Cherry was 0-3 with a save and a 6.35 ERA in 18 relief appearances for the Baltimore Orioles last year. He spent most of the season at Triple-A Norfolk, where he was 0-1 with a 2.89 ERA in 28 relief appearances.

  62. I think the Braves are inconsistent with pitching injuries. They want a pitcher to pitch through pain, but when a pitcher pitches through too much pain and it’s noticeable (as it was with Soriano on Tuesday), they get angry because a player is concealing his injury. I may be off-base on this, but that’s the impression I get.

  63. I am glad everyone here knows exactly what goes on behind the scenes for the Braves. I would be totally lost if I didn’t have you guys around to give me the inside scoop on how poorly they handle things.

  64. It’s not about ‘inside,’ it’s about what’s made public. And publicly, the Braves looked foolish with their handling of Soriano. Also, speaking of what we can obviously see and discuss, Bobby’s handling of Boyer, Acosta, and Bennett last year was also foolish. It takes more than simply having good arms in the bullpen; it also takes knowing how and when to use them.

  65. From DOB:

    Hanson, Heyward, Freeman and Jo-Jo Reyes are in next round of cuts, which won’t be announced until after today’s game or tomorrow. Talked to all of those guys this morning. Bobby said Hanson or Reyes could be brought back immediately if someone got hurt or Glav wasn’t ready, etc.

    Sammons and Hicks are two of the other four, but not sure of the last two yet.

  66. I’m worried about Gonzo. I saw him pitch over the weekend in Orlando and he was throwing in the high 80s although toward the end of the inning he was over 90. Last night, he looked bad but the story says he was throwing better. It’s just spring training but I’m a little concerned if he’s the closer.

  67. I wish Gonzo would start rocking on the mound again. I think he hypnotized batters with that motion and he needs to get back to it so he can be effective again…. “you are getting sleeeeepy… fastball!”

  68. Dibble has always been pretty much an idiot. I’m not sure I can take a year with Bob Carpenter and Rob Dibble doing Nats games.

    One thing I realized about watching the games live is that it’s much better without having to listen to the dribble that most announcers dispense.

  69. Gonzo is only good in high pressure situations. Im not too concerned with him and his stats in ST. As long as he’s not used in non save situations I have a lot of faith in him. We need a healthy Boyer, Soriano, and Moylan along with him also

  70. Gwinnett Braves – best team in the history of AAA baseball.

    Francouer took a pitch to right for a hit. Quick, look to the East!

  71. Schafer just gunned a guy trying to score on a Sac fly. I know the reasons to let him get some AAA time, but he sure looks ready to me. I remember last year in ST there seemed to be an outside shot he would break camp with the team before the HGH stuff.

  72. Dusty, plenty of fans wanted him to make the team, because he had such a great 2007 and because our outfield was so stinkingly wretched, but I don’t think there was any chance for him to make the team out of spring training last year — he had never played above A-ball until his return from his HGH suspension.

    He’s only played a half season since then. Even if he played this year, as an overmatched rookie, he wouldn’t outhit G. Anderson or J. Anderson or B. Jones by a significant margin, and he could spend his time much more productively in the minors, away from the spotlight and the arb clock, continuing to close the holes in his swing, figuring out how to hit lefties, and cutting down on his K’s. He’s not a perfect hitter yet by any means.

  73. You’re correct that he has some flaws in his game still (K’s too much and can’t hit lefties), and I wouldn’t HATE it if we waited until mid-June to delay the clock for one more year, but he looks ready for primetime to me. He would outdefend any of the other options and I don’t feel like it would stunt his growth terribly to learn at the Major League level as opposed to AAA.

    I guess I just believe he will make our team better on day 1 than any of the other options.

  74. Seems like those lefty relievers really really don’t want to make the big league team. Haven’t the last 3-4 losses come from guys that are on the bubble in the bullpen. Bobby’s trying to let one of them earn a spot, and they’re just throwing poop in his face.

  75. We’re in serious danger of kissing that golden grapefruit goodbye.

    Seriously, the losing streak has me more worried about our pen than anything. LOOGYs and Gonzo, that is.

  76. Anybody catch the MLB segment with Dwight Gooden? He’s still tall and lean EXCEPT for his stomach. He looks like a real tall pregnant woman.

    Does Zimmer have a form of elephantiasis? Or is that just 80 years of hard drinking?

  77. Mac, I wanted to post a picture in the comment but I don’t know how so I emailed it to you instead. I think you might find it humorous or perhaps prophetic.

  78. yep, the two loogys arent bad, their terrible. Time to just release Glavine and avoid that horrible deal and sign Ohman

  79. Kevin Goldstein @ BP:


    The Braves have given a number of prospects surprisingly long looks in their camp, with outfielders Jordan Shafer and Jason Heyward, along with first baseman Freddie Freeman, all generating a lot of buzz. Schafer, who could win the big-league center-field job almost by default, has been especially impressive, with one scout stating, “He just looks like he belongs, I’d certainly give him the job.” And while Heyward and Freeman are likely heading for High-A, they also have left a strong impression. “They both can really hit,” added the scout. “Heyward is especially impressive, as he puts on a show in batting practice, and then that power shows up in games. It’s a John Mayberry body with way more athleticism and speed. It’s clear on just a short look that he’s going to be pretty damned good.”

  80. @110 – I agree, but I don’t think the Braves want him to lose value by moving him to a reliever. Not that his value is all that high at the moment, but I think he has shown promise at times. They may still be looking at trades.

    They may also be waiting to see if Glavine’s arm holds up…

  81. I don’t see why it wouldn’t build value for him to succeed at the major league level. If he’s capable of getting both righties and lefties out, then it’ll show. But he needs to actually succeed in the majors one of these days, and we might as well let the team benefit.

  82. Jo Jo has nothing left to prove at AAA. Put him in the pen as the loogy. I dont see him on the block if they are sending him down, you’d think they’d showcase him and keep him up

  83. career #’s vs lefties

    Reyes 34IP 28H 15BB 32K .224BAA 1.24WHIP

    Logan 54IP 59H 21BB 58K .272BAA 1.46WHIP

    OFlaherty 34IP 30H 12BB 22K .231BAA 1.22WHIP

    Why do I have a feeling that the one with the worst stats will be our opening day roster loogy?

    Edit: Oflaherty’s 2007 #’s (didnt know they were this good)

    26IP 17H 11BB 18K .182BAA 1.08WHIP

  84. Many of you will have already seen this, but John Sickels had a pretty optimistic take on Brandon Jones today.

    Final paragraph: “I can’t quantify it or come up with any sabermetric rationale for this. I’m certainly not basing it on the spring numbers, but I think Jones will do better than what the projection systems are showing and could get close to the 90th percentile PECOTA. I wouldn’t bet a lot of money on that, or make a huge fantasy investment based on something I can’t explain. It’s an intuition call, but my intuition says that Jones has a better-than-expected chance to surprise, hitting something like .280/.345/.450 this year, more in line with his 2007 MLE than his 2008 performance.”

  85. I’m glad to see that Boyer is back and hopefully feeling better. He was pretty lights out before he got injury prone. I just hope he gets back to where he was. The bullpen is my biggest concern and getting Boyer back helps a little bit but I still want to see how things shake out once the season starts. If the bullpen doesn’t get overworked, we should be in pretty good shape.

  86. Maybe it was just me rooting for my bracket (TOTALLY wrecked after tonight), but for the first 30 minutes of the game, did it seem to anyone else that the refs were letting just about everything go inside the paint? Virtually no fouls, everyone getting bumped and pushed, etc. I mean, Carroll especially seemed like he was just pushing guys around inside (and got away with it for the most part). At least they were consistent about it (Memphis was mugging people towards the end trying to get steals and were often not getting called), but I think at some point you can’t just let the big guys push everyone around.

    Not that I think the refs lost Memphis the game or anything. When Mizzou banked in that 3 with a minute to go in the 1st half and then drained a 3/4 court shot as the buzzer went, I figured it just wasn’t going to be Memphis’s day. And the free throw misses were obviously huge. In the end, it was a really well-played game by Missouri and a couple guys (Dozier and Evans in particular) on Memphis. After watching this, I think Mizzouri’s a better matchup for UConn, anyways. I don’t think Memphis would’ve had any sort of answer to Thabeet, but at least Mizzou can throw bodies at him.

  87. They made it interesting, anyway

    But survive and advance baby.

    Good, good, night.

    Bring on UCONN

  88. #23

    I can’t stand Tennessee generally, and Lane Kiffin is definitely in over his head and a twit – all of this is true.

    But to hear Florida whine and cry after all the times that lout Urban Whiner runs up the score is pretty disturbing.

    In particular, not even the timeouts late in our game, but the game that Florida behavior was most egregious was the Florida/Kentucky game where up by SIXTY POINTS, Urban brings out Tim Tebow THROWING at the beginning of the 4th quarter. Boy, that screamed class.

    So actually, no matter what Lane Kiffin says or does, come September when Tennessee and Florida play, this Dawg fan will be pulling 100% for the Vols.

    (though I’m fully aware that Florida will likely pound Tennessee, badly).

  89. Mac,

    As I said via email to you, Mike Anderson is doing an amazing job at Mizzou.

    IMHO, after seeing now both VCU and Missouri play, as a Georgia fan first, I’d rather have Mike Anderson over Anthony Grant. I’d be happy with either guy, but Anderson’s team was extremely well coached last night and embarrassed that whiny baby, Calipari, who’s 1 of the 2 most likely next head coaches at Kentucky (him or Donovan).

    If I were Bama, I’d prefer Anderson over Grant, but if they hire Grant, I’d love to have Anderson in Athens….of course after last night, his price went up again.

  90. #103

    “Seems like those lefty relievers really really don’t want to make the big league team. Haven’t the last 3-4 losses come from guys that are on the bubble in the bullpen. Bobby’s trying to let one of them earn a spot, and they’re just throwing poop in his face.”

    Hilarious about the poop comment but also a sad but true situation we’re in.

    Will Ohman sits at home, and he could be half dead and look better then the lefties we currently have. He’s probably laughing at Wren who wasted $ on a useless back-up catcher and Glavine, and he could have spent it wisely on Ohman instead and our bullpen would be in better shape.

    Of course after what Marc said about how Gonzo looked and Soriano having another Mike Hampton-style hangnail, the bullpen is a growing concern.

  91. He’s probably laughing at Wren who wasted $ on a useless back-up catcher…

    Sigh.

    On another, more research-based note, did anyone see that Dave Cameron ranked the Braves as the 8th best organization in baseball the other day? That seems about right, as does his analysis.

  92. He’s probably laughing at Wren who wasted $ on a useless back-up catcher…

    Get over it already. It was a good signing in many ways. Complain about the Glavine signing – at least that is warranted.

  93. @128,

    I read the ranking of the organization and the comments. It was interesting that he said the Braves weren’t into statistical analysis but that someone purporting to be from the Braves organization said they were.

  94. Guys, I’ve called Alex R. on that fallacy a couple times on here, but he refuses to believe facts. He hates Florida, and he’s somehow convinced that Florida runs up scores, and you can’t tell him otherwise. Let him stay in his fantasy world.

    There have been multiple times that Tebow was pulled halfway through the 3rd quarter, if not before. Against the Citadel, I think he was gone by the second quarter. If Florida DID run up the score, Tebow would have won the Heisman.

  95. Yeah I know it’s just frustrating- I try really hard not to let it get to me- he’s just so obtuse and blissfully ignorant about it- reminds of colin cowherd.

  96. Let’s just look at things a bit further…

    Against FSU, Tebow was gone by 12 minutes left in the 4th.

    Against South Carolina, Tebow was gone after the 3rd quarter.

    Against Kentucky, Tebow was gone before the end of the 3rd quarter.

    Against the Citadel, Tebow was gone halfway through the 2nd quarter.

    Against Georgia, Tebow was gone by 11:30 left in the 4th. Would you have rather him stayed in longer, Alex?

  97. Oh, come on. Colin Cowherd is way better. I’m biased though; Colin Cowherd is probably my favorite sports talk radio guy.

  98. @128

    Though I’m embarrassed by how long it took, (effing Milwaukee) here are the seven franchises ranking higher than us:

    NYY
    BOS
    NYM
    CHI CUBS
    CLE
    MIL
    TB

    Payrolls probably give the Cubs, Yanks, Mets, and Sox an edge, and the farm system helps Tampa. Not really sure what Cleveland and Milwaukee have on us though.

  99. Not really sure what Cleveland and Milwaukee have on us though.

    World Championships. ::snicker::

    I really like TB’s front office. And because of that, I was so frustrated to listen to this sports talk radio host here in Tampa talk about David Price. She just COULDN’T imagine why they would send David Price down. Ever heard of arbitration, ma’am?

  100. I suppose Alex R.’s position is that Tebow in general shouldn’t play in the second half of games because at that point, it’s a foregone conclusion that UF is going to win?

  101. I can’t stand Colin Cowherd, but I have a soft spot for Alex R. Just wish he’d do more fact-based opining, because it really is tiresome to see the arguments which have been totally debunked brought up over and over again.

    Rob,
    My understanding is that the Price thing has as much or more to do with development than it does with arbitration. They want him as polished as possible before sticking him in the rotation, apparently.

    I kind of disagree, because I think, with pitchers, you use them as early as they’re effective, because those arms only have so many pitches in them, but the Tampa Bay folks have certainly earned the benefit of the doubt. (Yes, this is basically what Neyer said yesterday.)

  102. @128 Thanks for the link Stu. I love fangraphs.

    Speaking of the starting pitching depth, is there a realistic hope that Hudson can actually come back this season and contribute? Is there any official word on his timeline? Both he and Hanson can be a real boon to the rotation come late summer.

  103. Stu, I was such a big fan of Cameron giving us the #8 — after we lost 90 games, no less — that I roped him in for an interview on Chop-n-Change. Keep an eye out for it. (Kyle Boddy of Driveline Mechanics will be on in a couple days.)

    I’m with you on Cleveland and Milwaukee, Ethan. I think it’s a judgment call. Both have tremendous farm/development systems, and both have graduated fantastic major league talent with payrolls lower than ours, but neither front office has really shown in the last few years that they can get over the hump and deep into the playoffs. Then again, neither have we. As franchises, I think we’re about equivalent — we’re all A- franchises, after all.

    (Though I might feel sliiiightly better about Mark Shapiro or Doug Melvin as GM than I do about Frank Wren. It’s mostly a tossup.)

  104. Stu, I know that’s what’s coming out of their front office, but I simply don’t believe it. I think it’s pretty obvious they’re playing with the arbitration clock, just like they did with Evan Longoria. I don’t have a problem with this at all. They’re a poor team, and they need to be smart with things like these.

    Colin Cowherd is thought-provoking and entertaining. If I’m looking for deep, intellectual analysis, I’ll go elsewhere, and it probably won’t be on talk radio. There’s not much good analysis on sports talk radio, in my opinion. But Colin is enjoyable, and I don’t have to agree with him half the time (which is pushing it) to enjoy him.

  105. Rob,

    I hate the Gators, and they do run up the score.

    But I don’t care. I think you should run up the score. Why not? Spare our feelings? Please.

    If you can’t run up the score on your hated rival, then who can you run it up on?

    The Gator have beaten my Vols by like a total of 63 points over the last two seasons. I don’t think the Fulmer way of “Workin like heck” and “Oh golly, they are a good team” shit was keeping the Gators from killing us.

    Maybe running the mouth will change things. At least it is more fun than what we had.

    Alex R is right about something else. Meyer is a cry baby.

  106. Stu et al, I think the Rays are making the right move, but they’re doing it for a number of reasons.

    They want him to work on his change-up, which he started throwing relatively recently, so that he’ll have a compliment to his fastball and slider, and that seems reasonable to me. I don’t think cost is a major factor — he’s signed for $8.5 million through 2012, and though he can void the contract when he’s arb-eligible, the fact is, he already has an ML contract.

    Most importantly, a couple of their pitchers, including Jeff Niemann, are out of options, while Price has options left. They can keep the out of options pitchers in the majors at least till they can trade them, and then bring up Price when his change is consistent.

    By the way, Allen Barra’s an old-school sportswriter — his Bear Bryant biography is terrific and I have his Yogi Berra bio on my shelf — and even he is calling for the Yankees to shift Jeter off short. The damning sentence: “Let’s go ahead and say it: No major league team has ever won a pennant with a 35-year-old shortstop.”

    Seems like even New Yorkers might be able to warm to the idea. Think they could ever convince the Cap?

  107. I honestly haven’t listened to Cowherd in over two years, but back when I did, I just thought he was a pompous dick. Not my cup of tea, as far as radio personalities go.

  108. Some pretty good outfield bats will be available next offseason, I’m not sure if we’ll have any money to spend, and we will need to patch some bullpen holes(we’re losing both soriano and gonzo).
    here are some of the OF bats
    Hideki Matsui
    Matt Holliday
    Vlad Guerrerro
    Carl Crawford
    Rick Ankiel
    Jason Bay
    Jermaine Dye
    Magglio Ordonez
    Xavier Nady

    this may allow us some great upgrade opportunities, I wouldn’t be surprised either if we traded in some of our pitching depth for a big bat.

  109. I’m a lawyer, AAR, what do you think?

    (I just meant that Cowherd’s shtick isn’t my cup of tea. Some political talk radio hosts use the same. Blech.)

  110. My problem with Cowherd is that he creates straw man like arguments to get whatever point he wants to make across.

    “You got <insert whatever he’s against” guy who’s sitting in his mom’s basement eating cheetos thinking and he’s a dolt.”

    And yeah I like Alex R. better- but stop with the wrong facts!

  111. that was suppose to say “You got (insert what he’s against) guy who’s sitting in his mom’s basement eating cheetos thinking (opposite of what he thinks) and he’s a dolt”

    i guess i’m the dolt

  112. Eh, Urban’s ok. Spurrier used to just leave us on the stump.

    I like Cowherd but I understand Stu’s point. Who do you like, Stu?

  113. If it was a decision based on who the best 5 starting pitchers were, the Rays would have David Price in big-league camp. There are reasons to keep him down, most of them having to do with money and trying to get the most out of their other players. But Price is definitely one of the best 5 starting pitcher options the Rays have.

  114. Ithica- A lot of those bats used to be good, but I’m not sure how they’ll fair in the twilight of their careers. Also, I’m pretty sure I’d have Nady at the bottom of that list by a good margin. :-)

    Still, it’d be nice to see the Braves go after Holliday or Bay or (maybe) Crawford or Ankiel. It’ll be interesting to see how much these guys get relative to the players who were FAs this year. (Incidentally, you might want to add Abreu and Burrell to that list.)

  115. Crawford has an option for like 8 MM, that, if he puts up a line near his career norms this year, the Rays would be stupid not to exercise.

    I wouldn’t put money down that he reaches the open market.

  116. hank, I would never marry a doctor, but I am already married to someone who works for VU Alumni Relations. We relate, alright.

  117. DOB:

    Glavine’s done, 34 strikes in 51 pitches. Was only going to go three innings originally, but pitch count was so low through three that he went another

    Three hits, no runs, no walks, three strikeouts

    Everyone complaining about not using Hanson, but how many would starting b****ing if Hanson made the team and was awful? I can see all the people wanting Hanson on the team complaining about the team rushing him and “Devining” him.

  118. I don’t think too many were expecting Hanson to break with the big boys. I’m glad he’s going to AAA (wish I could say Richmond). No need to start the arb clock, and give him a chance to see some more of advanced hitters. He can still make an impact this year.

  119. Anyone see Mike Marshall on MLB Network last night?

    I’ve read a good bit about him. He has a revolutionary or absurd (take your pick) approach to pitching. Has a school in Florida that takes in a lot of last chance / never was guys.

    He’s either a visionary or crackpot, but fascinating nonetheless.

  120. RE: Glavine

    In spite of my issues with the signing, I’m really, really trying to get behind him. Does anyone have any…any type of rationale as to how he might be moderately successful this year?

    I just don’t see how an 82 MPH fastball, even spotted perfectly, can get it done.

    @166

    Yeah, Rudy Seanez gives him a lot of credit for his success. Interesting is a good word. I think some of what he espouses makes sense, but I remember J.J. Picollo (when he was with the Braves) absolutely blasted him.

  121. Who was this against?

    For me, the people on the AJC Braves vent. I really shouldn’t read that.

  122. @163 – I think very few on here are promoting having Hanson up at the majors to start the season. Most were just advocating not having Glavine as the 5th starter (me included). But there are several other options outside of Hanson to get that done (Reyes, Morton, Campillo). But I don’t see where you are getting people saying Hanson should be brought up now.

  123. How hard does Jamie Moyer throw? It can’t be much harder, if any, than Glavine. He is still pretty successful and Glavine certainly has a much better overall track record. Let’s give him a chance before writing him off. We don’t need him to be 1998 Tom Glavine.

  124. There are a lot of words you could apply to Mike Marshall. He seems intelligent, with probably a very healthy ego, and a fair amount of anger that the baseball mainstream has shut him out completely. Thing is, few things are as commonplace and at the same time as devastating to a franchise as pitcher injuries, so if there’s any chance he might have a clue, it’d probably be worth listening to him. And the baseball mainstream often takes decades before it starts to warm to a good idea.

    I think it’s worth keeping an open mind about Marshall, at least, especially with a weak-hitting fringe position prospect converted to pitcher like Jorge Sosa. After all, honestly, with a guy like that, what’s to lose?

  125. Imagine: Mets come to town in September for a series. It’s Glavine’s turn in the first game, He is followed in the 2nd and 3rd games by Hanson and Lowe.

    Hanson’s fastball appears to the Mets to be 150 mph. Lowe’s sinker appears to the Mets to be Sid Fernandez-level heavy.

    Looking on the bright side, I guess …

  126. Ethan, I think he’ll dial it up to 85 come April 19th. But seriously, he was barely reaching 80 his last start and it seems he got to 82 regularly today. He’s still rehabbing, pretty much.

    If the reason for his poor performance last year was injury, then he should be able to pitch. But if it was because he was just done, then he’ll remain done. Either way, we’re not losing much.
    Remember, we pulled the offer to Ohman in December. Glavine has nothing to do with us not signing him.

  127. So, Billy Clyde out, Donovan in at UK. Anthony Grant most likely in at UF. Another interesting day in the SEC…

  128. If that’s true, I’m wishing UGA had jumped on Grant when they had the chance. Of course, Grant would probably have chosen to wait for this very sequence of events to occur.

  129. I don’t know if you’ve been following the Jose Tabata story, but it’s pretty remarkable. Here it is in a nutshell: Tabata’s a former stud Yankee prospect traded to the Pirates in the Nady deal, 20 years old. His wife is a 43 year old former criminal who allegedly stole another woman’s baby.

    Tabata’s quote: “The truth is that my wife told me many lies that, until this whole situation began, I did not know. One that hurt me a lot was her history as a criminal- that she had spent years in prison, that she had robbed and committed fraud. But the worst lie was that she completely falsified her pregnancy and the eventual birth of a baby girl, which would have made me a father for the first time. Imagine how that made me feel.”

  130. Now it looks as though Donovan’s staying. You’d think, after the Braves’ offseason, I’d have learned to be slow to assume the accuracy of a sports journalist’s breaking news story.

  131. Part of Tabata’s quote:

    “What I do know is that I am a Pittsburgh Pirate and my life-long idol is Roberto Clemente. And because of that, when presented with this difficult situation, I asked myself “what would Clemente do in this situation?” I know Clemente was a man known for his decency, responsibility, doing what he says, and always doing the correct thing. And I believe the only correct thing in this moment is to tell the truth.”

    Leaving aside my questions about how a wife could fake a pregnancy to her own husband, this makes him sound like a standup guy who was in over his head. Not to mention that’s a hell of a good way to ingratiate yourself with Pittburgh Pirates fans. I’m thinking they’re going to have his back.

  132. As a Magic fan, I’ve been through Billy Donovan’s act before. As a coach, he is a good one, but as a guy who keeps his word, he’s an asshat.

    Glavine can be successful at 82-85mph, as long as he works the corners.

  133. @ 157 – actually I heard Price has a mole on his shoulder that is quite unsightly.

  134. @188-

    I’m not going to say that Donovan acted particularly well in agree to a contract with the Magic without giving it sufficient thought, but I hardly think making a hasty decision before ultimately correcting it is a damning personal character flaw.

  135. I hate Florida so much that I don’t know that I could handle Donovan back at UK, and I bleed blue.

  136. @194 – You might want to get that checked out. Seems like it could be a serious problem…

  137. I don’t see where it has been mentioned here, but Anthony Grant has accepted the job to be Alabama’s next head basketbakk coach – he’ll be introduced on Sunday. I think it’s a good hire. Honestly I don’t know much about him except he’s done well at VCU and has a rep as an excellent recruiter.

  138. Wow. Stories coming out about Gillispie make Frank Kush look like Mother Teresa in comparison.

  139. Come to think of it, the Rodriguez Rule preceded the Furcal Rule. Wow, I sure am glad that one didn’t work out. We may say the same thing about Furcal if he’s injured a large part of the year. I don’t think Grant will change his mind.

  140. What was our offer? That was during the dark years*.

    *The dark years were a period from 1996 to 2001 where I rebelled against baseball and didn’t play or follow it. Probably the saddest times of my life.

  141. Watching the replay…great interview with KJ. Actually, Boog has been asking great questions with everyone. B-mac was a hoot.

  142. The Rodriguez Rule was that Rich Rodriguez accepted an offer to be Bama’s football coach (by most accounts). Before he was set to announce, the West Va governor got involved and more money was offered and he decided to stay. Of course he left for Michigan the next year and he wasn’t overly successful. He will probably do well in time, but I’m still glad we got Saban.

  143. I thought you were referring to A-Rod, td. My bad

    I don’t recall how much the offer was, Rob.

  144. The A-rod offer was around 164 MM over 8 years. Which he was probably going to take…until 252 came

  145. was at the game yesterday. some afterthoughts:
    1. glavine looked very hittable. as someone stated earlier, if he doesnt pick up a little on his velocity, his change of speed is not going to be far enough apart to fool anyone.
    2. acosta looked very frustrated with himself. he gave up a 2 run homer, but was beating himself up on the mound before that. before i saw him up close, he seemed like an even keeled individual, but now, i’m not so sure. he could be a bit of a head case.
    3. chipper still looks awkward. after he came out of the game, he was walking in the outfield grimacing and stretching. he looks a bit heavier and a lot less flexible.
    4. josh anderson looks like a baby in a man’s game.
    5. i was in the 12th row behind the dugout. all the 10-13 year old boys were standing right behind the dugout yelling for the players to throw them a ball. in the middle of the 3rd, prado was coming off of first base, ball in hand, and all the children were yelling. from the 12th row i yell, PRADOOOOOO! he looks up and throws me a bullet. it was a great ballpark moment.

  146. Price was hanging out with Tebow and the unsightly mole miracuously disappeared. and Ryan, i really hope you gave the ball to one of the kids.

  147. The best Gillespie story I heard was from a friend who is a UK alum. She told me that the reason UK’s point guard from the 2007-2008 team (who was pretty decent although not a spectacular player) transferred away was because Gillespie slept with dude’s girlfriend. Which is another way of saying, it’s probably a good think for Kentucky that this guy is gone.

  148. @193:

    It was the way the whole thing was handled. I think it hurt his image with the NBA and U of F. Hwoever, I think we have a better coach with Stan Van Gundy.

  149. They’re interviewing Bobby during the game today. JJ had just walked the bases loaded with one out. JJ gets a potential DP ground ball from Jeter that Yunel boots.

    The camera had broken from Bobby to the play on the field, but when you saw Yunel boot it, you hear a, “Oh shit” from Bobby over the air.

    In spite of everything, that’s why he’s awesome. Meaningless spring training game and he’s on freaking TV, but Bobby’s still into it.

  150. I gotta agree with mraver about Donovan. He obviously should have done some things differently, but as a neutral observer, my impression of him was not affected negatively at all by the ordeal. He jumped at more money and a new opportunity, but then realized he didn’t want to leave the situation he already had in which his family was happy.

    If he’d taken the UK job, my impression of him would have gone down because his handling of the Orlando situation would look far less genuine, but as it is, I actually like and respect the guy a lot. Just the opinion of someone who couldn’t care less about the Magic and actively roots against the Gators in everything.

  151. dont know if its been mentioned or not, but the Braves/Yankmees game will be on MLBtv tonite @ 9pm

  152. re: McCann- After looking at it in the locker room, they decided it was just a bruise and didn’t even send him for X-rays. So I guess no problems there.

  153. i was at the game again today. was there any explanation as to why b. jones was taken out before his first at-bat?

  154. was there any explanation as to why b. jones was taken out before his first at-bat?

    DOB said he was sick.

  155. #219 – good, terrible trade when it was made

    BMac, has to start moving his hand behind his back while catching. We’ve seen him take too many foul tips off that hand

    Schafer had another 3-5 day.

  156. Schafer is looking better and better. Hope the BMac injury isn’t too bad. Looks like he’ll be ok though. That’s always good news.

  157. 221 — I realize it would help give him a little quicker release when needed, but I swear I’ve seen him with his hand out when nobody was on base, too.

  158. O’Flaherty and Logan are horrible pitchers. One of them making the team just because of the arm they throw with is stupid. Just take the best relief pitchers.

  159. Wilson Betemit’s development ends with the release of Jeff Ridgway. Hmm… clean swap…

  160. @221 & 227: We didn’t trade Betemit for Ridgway, we traded Betemit for Aybar (along with Danys Baez and “cash”) and then, after multiple issues with substance abuse, traded Aybar (with “Chase Fontaine”) for Ridgway. Willy had run out of chances here and needed a change of scenery. I was actually pretty surprised we actually got a warm-bodied LH with Major League experience in the deal.

    I wasn’t terribly excited by the Betemit move, but by the time Aybar was dealt those costs were already sunk. I’m not saying it was a good deal, but it wasn’t a big enough deal to be considered terrible. It’s kind of like the sort of Josh Anderson for “Chase Fontaine” or Jeff Bennett for Jairo Cuevas and “cash” that I’m expecting to see over this next week.

  161. Gadfly, I know the story. At the end of the day, we got nothing out of Danys Baez, the cash was probably insignificant, and Willy Aybar has only been successful with Tampa Bay. I’m not saying Atlanta was wrong to deal Aybar (I agree that he was a problem), but it’s just frustrating to see an unfortunate turn of events that leads from Wilson Betemit to a useless LOOGY that has just been released.

    I have to say Willy Aybar is one of my favorite Rays players, and the fact that they’ve signed a BACK-UP to a multi-year extension says a lot about how far Willy Aybar has come. Good for him, bad for us.

  162. @207

    Ryan, there are some ballpark moments. I’m glad you enjoyed the game. I saw Chipper a couple weeks ago in Clearwater, and I thought he looked really good. It looks like he’s dropped about 10 pounds, and I thought he looked much more athletic. I saw him again on TV and the announcers were saying the same thing. I’ve been so impressed with him that I was thinking of drafting him as my starting third baseman in one of my leagues, something I didn’t wanna do last year.

    Just my two cents…

  163. @229

    When you hear closure of trade circles like that, it always makes me wonder scenarios like…if instead of Aybar, the Bravos had asked for a prospect named Andre Eithier who wasn’t even good enough to make the Dodgers top ten list for that year.

    20/20 hindsight…

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