41

So it’s my birthday again. For a while there, it wasn’t too clear that I’d make it this far, but so far, so good. Thanks to everybody who’s been there for this past year.

118 thoughts on “41”

  1. Happy birthday Mac!

    My fiancé asked about you recently and I’m glad I have something to report!

  2. Question about the Braves Journal bracket- What are the bonus points that you can receive, and why do I only have 6 and the leader has 44?

  3. Happy birthday Mac! Thanks for this site! On another note, I just discovered that I can watch both of todays games on mlb.tv at the same time!

  4. happy birthday mac. appropriately, the braves graced the day with not only one but two (mighty irrelevant) wins.

    on a more serious note, chris medlen went 4 innings today. he might get a shot at starting again, or am i mistaken? i hope not.

  5. Stu / Stephen,

    Trying to put my obvious bias aside, I think the inequitable treatment with fouls went well beyond that last rebound. I have never seen so many charges called, and the same plays ended up as blocks on the other end. Very frustrating.

    Overall, I will take this as a good season, SEC championship and all. The refs just helped it end sooner than it should have.

  6. I hate-hate-hate crying about officiating.

    VU wons an evenly-called game by 10+. That was just unbelievable.

    Of course, Jenkins could’ve just hit one of those open looks he got down the stretch and it’d be moot, but it’s still infuriating.

  7. While everyone’s been distracted by the NCAA Tourney and dancing on Duke’s grave – and rightly so, mind you – the Braves have won three in a row and started to resemble a major league baseball club down in Orlando.

    Spring results are still meaningless, of course.

    But Dan Uggla is crushing the ball a little, nonetheless.

    And in other good news from spring training, Chase Utley is still out for the Phils.

  8. Did anyone get to watch Hanson when he pitched the other day? My brother says the hitch in his delivery is popping back up when he throws the curve.

  9. When you lose a game by one possession, there are a lot of “what ifs” that change the outcome. The officiating was just one of them.

    All the offensive fouls called were huge as we lost possessions and were put into foul trouble all at once.

  10. Braves should really consider starting Medlen in the rotation to begin the season while Huddy is out. Nice start by him today.

    Happy Birthday Mac

  11. If Medlen starts in the rotation and Delgado and Teheran both start in AAA, there will be 3 bullpen spots available and the Braves will be in the same boat they were in last year. There’s no way Fredi trusts significant innings to any of the other bullpen candidates. The only way Venters, Kimbrel, and O’Flaherty don’t get overworked is if Medlen is in the bullpen as well (or if Vizcaino stays healthy, which is highly doubtful).

    On a side note, Parraz and Sutton are destroying the baseball and if we’re giving the last 2 bench spots to guys that can actually help the team should Chipper sit, it would be these 2. Here’s hoping that the Braves don’t drink the Constanza kool-aid.

  12. Parraz is a worthy 4th/5th outfielder if he can still handle CF (minor league numbers shows he hasnt played there since ’08). The alternative would be Durango or Constanza. I’m not reading too much into ST fastballs, rather putting stock in a better player for a last bench spot.

    And Sutton can hit. He deserves the spot, no question. He’s proven himself enough and is only solidifying his numbers with a great spring.

  13. Happy birthday, Mac! It’s usually kind of weird congratulating someone for getting a year older, but you’ve had to fight for your year, and I respect that. Have a good one, man.

  14. I’ll take one from the Parraz/Sutton group and one from the Constanza/Durango group. That would seem to fulfill all the expected duties of the 4th/5th OF spots.

  15. In light of recent comments, Freddie has informed me that we will not be seeing him at the pancake social tomorrow.

  16. @33 – It will be interesting to see how Fredi uses Medlen; will he really use him to take some of the load off the big 3, or will he just be the 6th inning guy? If the latter, he might be more valuable as a fifth starter. Hopefully, it’s just for a month either way.

  17. ray @33 – so, Constanza beats out a double play, steals second to avoid an inning-ending double play and scores on a single.

    Barry Bonds? No. Effective and valuable? Absolutely.

  18. @46 It would probably be best not to hyper-define Medlen’s role — ideally, he’ll be the glue guy. The new Oscar Villarreal. (Don’t laugh, Oscar wasn’t bad…)

    @47 I agree — the bench has room for one pesky fast dude, whether Constanza or Durango.

  19. Sorry I missed your birthday, Mac. I was in “get the kid to the Prom” mode.

    I’m pretty sure my wedding didn’t cost as much as this stupid Prom.

    Anyway, Happy Birthday, Mac! You’re the best.

  20. @46 Freddie lacked a reliable 4th reliever last year. If Hudson is back in May Medlin can be a starter early on. It may depend on how the SPs avoid injury and whether the young pircherss develop. It is complicated emough to make my head hurt.

  21. Happy birthday, Mac. Have a great day, a great year, a great decade, etc. I look forward to checking your blog when we’re both octogenarians.

  22. @46, 50, most teams lack a reliable third reliever, let alone a fourth one. Any offensive uptick will go a much longer way towards resolving the problem, more so than acquiring a reliable 4th reliever, not that that wouldn’t be a great thing to have. One run games/extra inning games just have too little margin for error regardless of your pitching options.

  23. Happy late birthday Mac!

    I see no harm in starting Medlen in the rotation and moving him to the pen when Huddy’s back. Lots of positives to it: Keep the kids on the farm, slowing their arb-clocks; maybe increase Medlen’s stock for a potential future trade, perhaps even prove to OUR brass that he can handle it, making a trade higher on the depth chart possible; give yourself a longer look to see which of Delgado and Teheran should make the jump first in case of injury, instead of having to decide based on Spring Training; also, have the maximum number of guys stretched out early on, in case Jurrjens or Hanson makes 4 starts and hits the DL again.

    Only negative I can find is that starters go fewer innings early on, meaning more bullpen innings. And you’d like Medlen there to eat up some of them.

    All of this, to me, is trumped by the fact that I feel Medlen will do the best job. On April 4, in my mind, he’ll be the best bet of those three to go out and get big league hitters out twice and three times through the lineup.

  24. Minor pitching another great game.

    I’d like to see Medlen fill in for Hudson during April too. But if he does come out of the pen, I hope Fredi recognizes that he has a reverse platoon split. He should not be a right-handed specialist.

  25. Fredi has been talking about Medlen’s changeup against LH’rs, so its promising….

    David O’Brien –

    Do you think there is a chance the both Jordan Parraz and Luis Durango make the team with Matty Diaz being the odd man out? — VaBravesFan

    I think Parraz OR Durango could make the team, but not both. No, I don’t see Diaz getting dropped.

  26. Did anyone notice that Mark Bowman wrote that Eric O’Flaherty, Jonny Venters, and Craig Kimbrel “do not like the O’Ventbrel tag that some chose to use last year”?

    Lame. So what are we supposed to call them?

    Jim Powell used to call them “Sit down,” “Shut up,” and “Go home.” I wonder if they’d like that better.

  27. Mac, I too am glad that you continue to be not dead. On the one hand, I approve of your not dead nature in general terms. On the other, I’m pretty sure that your inheritors will ban me from the site before your blood even cools. So, YAY MAC LIVING!

    xoxo,

    s/

  28. @69, no doubt. And we’re all in this together.

    That said, I’m not happy about losing to a dog.

    /bracket fail.

  29. @70 and 73-

    I’m torn. Are we at least losing to a big dog? Because then it’d be OK. But if it is one of those shitty little overgrown rat dogs, then I’m siding with Urlhix.

  30. I know better than to expect much appreciation for Furman Bisher here — but he wrote in a particular style that I grew up reading (Lieb, Runyon, Rice…yeah, I was a weird kid), and did it for so long that he eventually had it all to himself. Style doesn’t matter much anymore, because it isn’t a debatable topic. All that matters now is constructing and defending an argument. But nobody the AJC sports section has ever employed could match Bisher’s ability to paint a picture, and I always loved him for that. RIP

  31. Happy Birthday Mac.

    I guess it will be safe for the Braves to sign Japanese players now. I will give Bisher a break to some extent on that because Pearl Harbor was to his generation what 9/11 is to ours and, in a lot of ways, worse.

  32. I guess it will be safe for the Braves to sign Japanese players now.

    As long as the gentlemen we sign are cool with playing in Pearl, Mississippi…

  33. Ha, I wasn’t even thinking about Pearl Harbor. I was just referring to the Braves’ handling of the last Japanese player they signed.

  34. Happy Birthday, Mac.
    Thank you for the fine picture of Eddie.
    Can’t wait to see what you post for Hank.
    Then Glavine is next at 47, right?

  35. There’s an hilarious story about Bisher and Hunter S. Thompson driving around together at a Super Bowl in Miami.

    The details might surprise you.

    RIP, Furman.

  36. RIP-Furman Bisher….I remember him with more sympathy than many as Aaron, RF is one of the first baseball books that I read. Bisher was a writer from another era and wrote about sports in Atlanta (and the South) at an interesting time. His work may well repay another look….

  37. Personal predictions on the Tebow/Manning situation.
    1) In Peyton’s first year Denver won’t be a whole lot better than last year. Manning’s stats will obviously be better, but he’ll be looked on as a disappointment (reason: I’m not impressed with the Broncos’ overall passing game and I don’t expect the players other than the qb to be appreciably better next year).

    2) Manning will get a much better supporting cast and things will improve quite a bit in year 2.

    3) Tebow will again show some flashes of competence in Miami and will be a little better statistically than 2011.

    4) Tebow will eventually either be released or traded again starting the 2013 season and will look at playing a backup role after that.

  38. Really surprised Manning didnt end up at Tennessee. He owns that state already. I wonder how much control he’ll have in Denver and I really cant believe someone gave him a 5/95 deal.

  39. 96–No surprises, but I would love to see Redmond get his chance at some point this season….

  40. @97

    The media was pushing it so hard and people claimed to have sources about him coming. I am not sure he ever was. The one thing about Peyton is he doesn’t tip his hand.

    It sounds like he was going there all along. It is a better team and a better chance to win over the next few years.

  41. I also love how Clay Travis thought he had the hook up and knew Peyton was a Titan. Now, he is calling Peyton out.

  42. I’m assuming the Tebow-Francoeur comparisons have already been done to death here and that I’ve just missed them.

  43. @105,

    That’s why Denver will trade Tebow to the Chiefs. Can you imagine one city having both Tebow and Francoeur? It would be awesome!

  44. http://tinyurl.com/6pklmxk

    Just me or does this have the feel that the Braves still have Pastornicky in the lead for the SS battle? Bowman and DOB have been reporting that Pastornicky is now more relaxed and playing better. DOB went as far as talking about Pastornicky’s latest 1-3 game and how great his AB’s were in that game.

  45. I watched Pastornicky the other night have two really good ABs. When I saw him play last year in AA, he had some really good AB’s too.

  46. Did the Braves let him visit with Dr. Andrews last year or was it just the Braves medical staff decision to let him rest that partial tear in his throwing arm?

    Apparently, someone made a very bad decision.

  47. Not really sure how to read into these tweets.

    •#Braves haven’t ruled out Medlen for the Hudson fill-n duty in April, Fredi G. said. Medlen will start a minor league game this wk. 1 hour ago

    •Wren also made it clear #Braves planning on Medlen for bullpen. Thinks Medlen helps team more there because they have good starters 47 mins ago

  48. Why do these teams insist on trying “rest” to heal these arms? It almost always ends up being TJ surgery and they just delay the process? Did anyone really think that a guy with a torn ligament wouldn’t eventually require surgery? Are the Braves concerned about their health care costs and trying to hold down their premiums?

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