Braves 1, Tigers 0 (by coop)

Your Cobb County Braves beat the Detroit Tigers 1-0, and the 2016 Atlanta Braves are history. Turner Field is a thing of the Braves’ past. The Braves will never play another game at the Ted.

Julio Teheran pitched. Freddie Freeman drove Ender Inciarte in with a first inning sacrifice fly. Julio was nigh unhittable through seven, fanning 12. He also got two hits off Justin Verlander, who matched Julio pitch for pitch after the first.

Jose Ramirez pitched the eighth, yielding nothing thanks to another Dansby Swanson-started double play. Jose can bring it, and Dansby can play. He can dance too.
Newly extended Jim Johnson pitched the ninth. He gave up a hit to Miguel Cabrera – Miggy can hit — but he struck out the final two hitters at Turner Field. That’s how you play the spoiler.

The Braves ended the year with a record of 68 and 93. They’re better than that.

Wait ’til next year. You’ll see.

230 thoughts on “Braves 1, Tigers 0 (by coop)”

  1. Reds just gave it up in the 9th to the Cubs, so notwithstanding a big rally we’ll lose a draft position to them and the Padres.

  2. Is this the best they could come up with for the ceremony?

    Hank Aaron to Bobby Cox was special. 30min moving home plate? Cmon

  3. Yep, forget my bad math on the last thread. It looks like we pick 4th. Blech.

    RE: Blair

    I love things like the Player’s Tribune, don’t get me wrong. I love the access we get to players nowadays. Pretty much the only reason why I’m on the Twitter machine. I’m just sick of a fledgling prospect’s daddy posting on the interwebs, and I bet the Braves’ FO doesn’t like it either. The kid’s been having his butt handed to him all year, and his dad is on the dot com’s saying, “but, but, but”. You don’t see Jenkins Sr. or Mama Whalen on there talking about why their boy isn’t missing bats. Just shut up. Every single pitching prospect from the GCL on up has been told to work on something. Blair and his slider is no different.

  4. RE: draft selection – looks like it’s going to go
    1) Twins
    2) Rays
    3) Reds
    4) Padres
    5) Braves
    6) A’s
    7) DBacks

    30) Cubs

  5. I applaud the team spirit of many of the mainstays here, and thanks to all the stalwart recappers. Alex, you’ve kept this thing rolling for another year — hat’s off to all your efforts. I wish I could have enjoyed all the ceremony this week, but I can’t bring myself to do it. Turner Field is the best sports venue in Atlanta’s modern history, and it’s being abandoned far too soon. That’s what we do here, though. What use is history when there are caps to feather? So long, everybody.

  6. I found it odd that Ted Turner—the person whom Turner Field is named after—was absent from all the festivities. Perhaps I, living in the Florida panhandle, missed something?

    sansho1, I hope that you will be with us during the winter?

  7. @3, it wasn’t that I didn’t understand Rob, I just don’t agree. Sure, Blair has a hyper-involved dad, but his son was a little leaguer a decade ago, and maybe that’s part of why he is in the majors despite not having elite talent. I doubt Aaron is asking his dad to defend him online, and Craig Blair has no obligation to do what mama Whalen is doing. I also don’t really care if people argue politics on Twitter, unless it draws national attention. It probably would matter to me more if I weren’t politically apathetic.

  8. Second sansho @6. It’s the damnedest thing, actually — a former Olympic stadium retrofitted for baseball after the fact, it would have been perfectly natural if it felt completely impersonal. But it was actually just a great place to see a ballgame, and the only real reason it’s being decommissioned is simple dumb greed.

  9. Alex, first of all I want to say thanks for doing such a great job of keeping this site going this year. It’s been fun sharing this mostly pathetic season with each of you.

    Secondly, I want to push back a little on what you said at 9. I’m not into the political reason for moving away from Turner Field, but, putting that aside, I don’t necessarily see it as greed. If the Braves make more money and they field a better team, and they have more money to sustain a good team, I’m all for it. I know it remains to be seen, but if we have a better product in the long run I’ll be happy. Since I have never lived in Atlanta, my perspective may be different than others, and it may be wrong, but I’m interested to see how the gamble pays off.

  10. I hate this team.

    Could win enough to be relevant, couldn’t lose enough to get a #2 draft pick. This team started winning and choked away its good pick only after the losing damage was done.

    Nothing good about them.

  11. I do wish to register my disappointment that in 48 hours we went from the #2 draft slot to the #5 slot, and after a season that felt like “doom” every day of 160 games in the standings. We can’t even lose without going into an epic collapse.

    But anyway…was nice to see Julio dealing on Day 162.

  12. I’m glad the players were still trying. This was different than recent Septembers, glad to see it. Was our draft slot influenced by the cancelled game in Miami? Obviously we could have won or lost that game, but we finished with the same number of wins as several teams, but had one less loss.

  13. We needed to have tried our best against Detroit. It would’ve been outrageous not to. It’s the games versus non-playoff-bound teams that hurt a little right now. Now we need to have the type of offseason that renders this all irrelevant. Coppy needs to work some magic.

  14. It’s remarkable how bunched up the bottom of the standings are. Six teams with 68 or 69 wins. For the Braves, the difference between the #2 and #5 pick was one play — the Inciarte catch in the Mets game.

  15. I suspect sansho means he’s gone from this site and Braves fandom for good, since the Braves are gone from Atlanta for good. It’s a shame, because he’s one of my favorites — but he’s been consistent.

    Really annoying that the Braves only wound up with the 5th pick (and 5th-pick slot money) in a season that has been obviously lost since April.

    My numbers are probably a little off here or there, but it looks like the Braves ended up spending about $97.5 million on payroll this year: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1auJaHME_enCTHWnMHj7g-dJKCkR-OVmqFSgtUBbTP6E/edit#gid=0

  16. I want to thank everybody too. My attendance here has been spotty this year, for which I apologize. But I still think this site managed to put up 100 wins without any help from me.

  17. Every team I follow has moved from spot to spot for various reasons. I have never abandoned them but I have stopped going to the venues. The NY giants move still burns me with the treatment lifelong season ticket holders received.
    It is harder to quit following a team then one thinks.

  18. My best to all here as well. Thank you for putting your braves thoughts on this interweb site another year. After all this time, this is still one of my favorite online places.

    If sansho really is gone, it is a damn shame. For my part, as an out-of-town fan, I’m kind of ambivilant about the closing of Turner Field except that it seems to be causing such angst for many Atlantans. I’m not under any illusions about the role of the profit motive in the team’s operations — the reason baseball exists as it does and not as an amateur endeavor is because it is a business. I enjoyed going to games at the Ted, and I hope I’ll enjoy the new place too, especially if the revenue improves the product on the field.

    And despite the results, this year has been pretty remarkable. In my estimation the organization has moved a long way between the months of April and October. Here’s to a great off season and to better things in 2017.

  19. @19, For most of the people I know personally, the angst over a 13 mile move is entirely self-inflicted. The vast majority of people complaining about the move aren’t loyal Braves fans or baseball fans…but there were a lot of ’em…enough that it has become a really fun pastime for many to snark about it on social media and come off looking equal parts virtuous/knowledgable. There are some Braves fans contrarians that want in on that sweet, sweet social media action enough that it has created a bandwagon effect.

    My first trip to Atlanta-Fulton County was a 1100-mile round trip drive from my hometown in Florida. I made the 85-mile drive from mid-state Georgia to A-FC and Turner Field dozens of times in my adult life without complaint. I could not care less about all the other factors – it’s other people’s money to spend wisely or not – I can hack the 13 extra miles when I’m driving from the south. My fandom of this team does not rely on that, and I pity the people who indulge in the kind of emotionalism that separates them from a team and a sport they claim to love.

  20. So long, Braves. I’d make a point to say I won’t be following you over the Lester Maddox Bridge, but I stopped following long ago.

  21. So when Kevin Maitan leads us to our third straight WS win, we’re going to have a bunch of fans that don’t enjoy it because the team moved 13 miles? Riiiiggghhht.

  22. I’m not all that attached to Turner Field. The last 3-4 years they kinda let the place go. It was a nice place to watch a game, but it felt like a corporate ballpark.

    I’m sure the new one will be similar, but maybe the parking people will be nicer.

  23. via Ben Ingram: “It would be hard to bring in a first time manager that isn’t Brian Snitker.” – Hart

  24. I suppose the narrative of the “necessity” of a new ballpark is related to the below-market TV deal, and if the below-market TV deal is indeed true and unavoidable, then I can get behind a new stadium. I can also slightly relate considering I live 10 minutes and work 5 minutes from the Trop, and I recently joined the bandwagon of wanting a new stadium for the Rays considering 1) the stadium sucks and 2) additional revenue could really help the Rays. If the Rays move to Tampa, which has been rumored for years, it wouldn’t bother me the slightest. If it became a business move to leave St. Pete, where they have been for 20 years to a different county and city, then so be it. There’s also the similarity of the circumstances by which each current stadium was built, including its purpose. With that said, the Rays’ history in St. Pete pales in comparison to the Braves’ history in the city of Atlanta, but it’s really an argument of semantics. The Braves are still the local team of Atlanta residents, and the Rays will still be the local team of residents of St. Pete.

    Seconded @ krusell. When the rotation is full of studs and Dansby, Ozzie, and Maitan are pumping out championships, the image of Turner Field will be a distant memory, and t-shirt sales will be quite high.

  25. Walt Weiss is looking for a new gig. Don’t know if he is a good manager, but he is liked and respected by his players, and we have a good history with him here. Heckuva player, “played the game the right way”, could draw walks better than any light-hitting player I can recall, and man that play against the Astros in 1999.

    I would be happy with either Walt or TP.

  26. @23,

    Did you see how terribly they maintained the outfield grass this season? Players have been complaining about the infield, but the outfield on Saturday night was a sea of divots. Really bad look.

  27. The new one looks very similar to Turner Field from the outside (to me at least). They definitely didn’t try very hard to make it unique or distinctive. At least the outfield will have lights. That’ll be nice.

  28. What a strange season. The last weeks have been fun though. Freddie! Thanks to my damn insomnia, I did actually watch more Braves games online than ever before. Thank you so very much for all the receptors and also all the regular posters. This is by far my most favorite thing to read. You guys are number one in my book. Let’s go get them next year. I believe we are closer than we think… Go Braves!

  29. I’ve lived in Atlanta almost all my life and I think the furor over the move is silly. Now, the move itself was somewhat silly, too, but the idea that they’re no longer Atlanta’s team because they moved 10 miles up the road…I just don’t get it. Some people seem to see that as no different than moving to Portland or wherever, but I think that’s insane. Any downward tick in my attendance over the next couple years will be entirely because it’ll probably be harder to get tickets during that time than it has been the last several years at Turner Field (both in availability and price). They’re not abandoning Atlanta when they’re still in the heart of the Atlanta metro area. The Braves are not the only professional sports team with a stadium in their city’s suburbs, and they won’t be the last ones to make the move in that direction, either.

    As far as Snitker goes, I have been firmly in the “find someone else” camp, but even I’m having a difficult time seeing how you don’t give him the full-time job at this point. If he doesn’t get the job, we weren’t being honest with him when he agreed to be the interim manager. I don’t know how he possibly could have done any better. Knowing that at the end of the day, the manager really doesn’t matter that much anyway, I’d begrudgingly give him the job.

  30. Bummer, no more referring to the ‘Ted’ which I thought was cool. So are we going to continue calling it WFF? STP? The ‘Sun’? The Traffic Jam? The CF? Almost Tennessee?

    Will the GS Panthers continue calling it Turner Field?

    Alex, thanks from the bottom of my heart for keeping this place going. I lurk more these days but its still one of my favorite places on the internet.

  31. @31, We don’t really know the nuances in management’s initial conversations with Snitker. It might have been made abundantly clear to him that this truly was an interim position and to prepare himself to be replaced by another hire come the offseason. If so he certainly wouldn’t be surprised if they wanted to make a “sexier” choice than him, like perhaps TP or Eddie Perez or my favorite suggestion Chipper Jones (which I’ve come around to seeing as having a 0% chance of happening now).

    That said…he won a lot of ballgames with a lousy team. And by all metrics they improved under his tenure. So management’s best laid plans might have hit a snag.

    @33, I vote strenuously against further usage of WFF. It directly effects my enjoyment of this blog, whether anyone cares or not… primarily because it’s so obviously in the realm of politics which there are rules against, whether anyone cares or not about that, either. But whatever. I’ll call it SunTrust…not hard to type out. Kinda lame and corporate but we’ve had a pretty good run as Braves fans not having to feel like sellouts to corporatism just by uttering our ballpark’s name. (Although to be fair, Turner Field was indeed a corporate name…just didn’t feel like it.)

  32. “I vote strenuously against further usage of WFF. It directly effects my enjoyment of this blog, whether anyone cares or not… primarily because it’s so obviously in the realm of politics which there are rules against, whether anyone cares or not about that, either.”

    Thank you. Seconded.

  33. I think WFF is just snarky humour rather than political, but I can see the other side too. I would bet that STP catches on. It’s the path of least resistance.

  34. We all made it to the last game at the Ted. For my daughters it’s the only place they’ve seen the Braves (I saw more than a few in the old park) so they were a little sentimental. For me, it’s a ballpark. I guess it’s the equivalent of rooting for laundry – it’s steel and concrete and while yes it was a nice place to see a game, it’s not Wrigley or Fenway. All the modern parks are pretty similar (same architect designs most of them) so it’s not that big a deal to me to leave the Ted.

    The ignominy of some people about the move does make me laugh a bit. I live in Cobb. Will I see more games ? Maybe – depends on how much ticket prices go up. Will traffic to the park be a CF ? Yep – most likely. Is traffic to Turner Field terrible too – yep whenever there is a real crowd. Will it be easier for me to go to a game ? Yep. Will i miss walking through urine smells underneath the connector from RD Abernathy (which was the absolute best place to park btw – easy in, really easy out) ? Nope, not a bit. Simple economics is that for a plurality if not a majority of people who go to games that is also the case. SunTrust will be closer and certainly the development around the park will be nicer. The area around Turner Field was just starting to get some momentum and get nicer, but guys, it’s a dump. I hate it the most for the guys who started a bar and restaurant there on Abernathy just in time to see the Braves announce the move. Terrible. Had to go in there and give them some business.

    My bottom line is it will be more expensive to see a game but it should be a better experience overall. I do hate departing a stadium that was only 20 years old – it’s a waste, but I feel the same about the GA dome too. They did let the place go a bit to rot in the last few years, which was also a bit of an issue with the Braves claiming maintenance and upgrades were not keeping up (payable by the city).

    Oh well. Enjoyed the day. Enjoyed the win. Julio was nails and the DP Dansby started was clutch two days in a row. Go Braves. 139 days to pitchers and catchers report.

  35. Let’s do some good old Aussie Rhyming Slang for SunTrust Park.

    So, SunTrust is a bank, and a park can be thought of as a field, think car park.

    So Bank to Rank, and Park to Field.

    Rank Field.

    Or, Rank Lea.

    Say it fast – it sounds like Wrinkly.

    I hereby nominate Wrinkly Field as the new Braves Journal Approved Nickname.

  36. @31 et al. – the complaint as I see it isn’t that the Braves are abandoning their fans, it’s that they’re soaking them. My parents live in Cobb and joined in a single-issue, landslide vote to throw the county commission chairman out this past summer. And that’s the folks *getting* the team.

    Local people become fans of entities that invest in their communities and give them a sense of civic pride. Local people lose interest in entities that play localities off each other for the highest secret bid and give them a sense of parasitism. I went to San Fran this summer and had this discussion with a friend experiencing this phenomenon with his longtime 49ers. It’s not just us.

    I’ve seen too many of the OSHA violations at the slaughterhouse to have an appetite for sausage at this point. SunTrust is somewhere I drive past most every weekend anyway – I’m not here to complain they moved to Mars – but driving by it just gives me a sense of a metro area getting played.

    I’ll be back when we get an owner in town who’s playing for championships, not for literally a tracking stock. But I’m out on Liberty, and on The House That Liberty Half Built, And Here’s The Bill For The Other Half.

  37. My concern with how badly Cobb County was fleeced is limited, let’s just put it that way. I don’t live there and it’s not my tax money. If their county commissioner allowed himself to get fleeced by the Braves, that’s not really any of my business, as I see it. Maybe that’s short-sighted of me, but I just don’t have a whole lot of sympathy there.

    I also think the Braves would’ve much preferred to stay at Turner Field and have the city help them spruce up the area around the ballpark. A spruce-up job which, by the way, is happening now, but wouldn’t have if the Braves had stayed, at least not for awhile. The City of Atlanta is a major part of the reason why this move is happening, so when in-town people put all the blame on the Braves and city officials act as if they’re being abandoned, I don’t have a whole lot of sympathy there, either. In a perfect world, should the Atlanta Braves play in the City of Atlanta? Yes. It’s not just the Braves’ fault that that won’t be happening next year, though.

  38. In general, cities should not give hundreds of millions of dollars to teams to build stadiums. I think the city of Atlanta was right to turn the Braves down — but I also think that they shouldn’t have given that money to the Falcons. Stadium economics are horrible. Everyone who has studied the issue has concluded that they are nearly always an awful deal for taxpayers, delivering scant economic benefits to anyone other than the team that’s getting a barrelful of free cash.

    We could always call it UnTrust Park. (Turns out Joe Sheehan got there before I did.)

  39. @47, Lift the no politics rule, I’ll have no complaints.

    Back to baseball: Dave Stewart axed as GM. Guess we won’t have Arizona to kick around anymore.

  40. Among the many things I like about this site, the “no politics rule” is high on the list. Let’s keep it. #VoteNader2016

  41. The economics of the new stadium aside, I’m not the least bit bothered with the Braves leaving behind The Ted, nor am I even remotely bothered with them relocating to Cobb County. Only residents of the area should be concerned with the politics of the move, otherwise it’s business as usual and not even remotely different from any other new stadium deal in other cities. I don’t have to like it, but I can certainly not care about it. I’m a Braves fan first and foremost.

    As for the Ted? Good riddance. I don’t have fond memories even if they did continue the majority of their division win streak in that place. Far more vivid are the memories of losses. I look forward to a brand new stadium and hopefully a brand new Braves team that is poised to grip the NL East for hopefully a new run of titles.

  42. Turner Field holds a few memories for me (playing catch with Klesko from the left field stands being high among them), but the TV team was really grasping to show memories of the place. Francoeur’s debut homer was one of the 1997-2006 memories for crying out loud. Three of the most memorable to me (not shown for obvious reasons) are Ripken’s six-hit game, Bonds’s three-homer game, and Johnson’s perfect game. I say it’s time to go. We can tap dance all day long about one of the biggest reasons they moved, but we all know about the awful area The Ted is in. Personally, I’m glad I won’t have to worry as much about getting mugged. Also, there should be fewer ripoff street salesmen because of Cobb County ordinances.

  43. It’s weird that Barry Bonds, an otherwise high profile and controversial athlete, decides to become a hitting coach for a low market team. He stays relatively quiet the entire year, and then gets fired. I guess I was expecting that if he only lasted one season, it would be drawing more attention in the process. It’s as if I assumed that no news was good news with Barry Bonds.

  44. 2015

    “We see Max Scherzer getting $210 million on the free-agent market,” Coppolella said. “We believe free-agent pitching is one of the most inefficient uses of money, and we know how volatile pitching is in every sense of the word, so our goal was to load up on a quantity of quality and try to build our organization for long-lasting success. Nobody knows whether all of these pitchers will have major league success, or even if they will stay healthy, but we do know that they offered us the most upside of any other potential acquisitions.”

    2016

    “(Starting pitching) would clearly be our big need,” Braves general manager John Coppolella said of the to-do list. “We need two starters at least, possibly three.”

    Step 1: Trade for pitchers so you don’t have to sign inefficient free agent pitchers
    Step 2: Sign inefficient free agent pitchers

    Great strategy. I’m sure it will pay off.

  45. This has been my least-favorite baseball season in more than 25 years. I hate that the Braves are headed to the suburbs & all the shenanigans don’t give me much of a good feeling either.

    Basically, almost everything I can’t stand about the ATL suburbs has wrapped itself around my baseball team & that’s really why much of my enthusiasm has waned. Didn’t think it could happen, but it has.

    I’ll still follow (good days or bad), because at the end of the day, the actual games remain the most interesting thing to me about baseball. It’ll just be a matter of whether or not I spring for the MLB package next year — this year, I didn’t. I kinda hope I find a reason to break down & buy it next year.

  46. @6

    Not that this changes your overall point, by the way, but Philips Arena is objectively the best sports venue in Atlanta’s modern history. It’s not a particularly close call, to tell you the truth.

  47. @59 For the sake of my own sanity, I’m going to assume you’re being snarky instead of serious. The “starting pitching” the 2017 Braves are going after is likely to be value buys / dumpster dives of the Bud Norris variety, sufficient to fill out the rotation and allow the Braves’ best-in-baseball collection of pitching prospects time to find their way to the majors.

    Pitching is volatile and risky; at some point the Braves will spend $200M+ on a starting pitcher but hopefully with all the arms they’ve stockpiled the Braves can instead spend their $$$ on other areas of need in the coming years.

  48. @59

    Coppy was talking about the Max Scherzer/David Price type of free agent starters being ineffecient. I don’t see any of those type guys out there this year.

    We’ve got two guys with the potential to be good to vewry good starters (Julio and Folty), one who has had some success and is young enough to develop (Wisler), and then a bunch of guys who might or might not pan out. I’m sure the FO wants 2-3 guys to bring to Florida so they can throw it all up against the wall and see what sticks. And maybe – just maybe 1 or 2 of the Newcomb/Weigel/Sims et al group will step up by mid-season and we’re good to go.

  49. @ 60,

    I think they might make a move and take on a fairly large pitcher contract for a # 2 or better pitcher. Coming in trade with 3 years left at 20 a year is nothing like giving 6 years at 20.

    I think Coppy means he wants to at least get one legitimate 3 at a price that would allow him to be flipped and get almost as much back in trade as you have to give up (providing no injury) and without more than 3 years on the contract. Then, Collmenter (with him being released, do we get the option and what is that amount) and maybe one more of the Bud Norris / Jhoulys Chacin ilk.

    Basically, at this point in the rebuild, they don’t want more than 1 pitcher going through the Folty in 15 / Wisler in 16 struggles. They can pitch like a solid 4 most of the time, or they will not be on the rotation for long. The “veteran presents” give them a chance for that.

  50. I am cautiously optimistic on the lineup even without a move.

    If we keep Recker and Flowers, that is a fairly good offensive crew and the only problem is throwing out runners.

    (By the way, anybody have insight on Flowers’ problems? Is it sheer arm strength, slow pop time, ?? I figure at least the drop from not too good to abysmal was mostly bad jobs by pitchers holding guys on.)

    Inciarte CF
    Dansby SS
    Freeman 1B
    Kemp RF (Mallex late defensive replacement, pinch hitter & runner, platoon day starter sometimes)
    Markakis, LF (I think they play better defense reversed)
    Flowers, C (if you get Castro, platoon him in around half of the starts)
    Peterson 2B (maybe partial platoon Castro) (maybe Albies later)
    Adonis / Rio 3B. I think that platoon is a 2 WAR floor 3.5 WAR ceiling platoon
    pitcher.

  51. If those are the two horses, then my money is on Snitker. It is interesting why Black is getting so much attention, but they know Snitker better than any of us do, and there must be something with Black.

  52. re: the Turner Field thing, I know it’s only ~20 years old, so this might sound absurd, but I do think there’s something to be said for continuity of experience, for having a place as a fan that you can keep going back to. Turner ain’t Wrigley, and you could undercut this argument really easily by pointing to Fulton County or Three Rivers or any of the other behemoth multipurpose stadiums — there’s definitely a point where this stops applying. But the neighborhood/MARTA issues aside, Turner Field was perfectly cromulent for me as a venue, the kind of place I enjoyed visiting from out-of-town — it still felt like you were “in the city” (even though I know this means something different to those of y’all who live there), it was a pleasant enough stadium, and I would get little jolts of nostalgia from being back in the same place I’d been with my grandfather to watch Mark McGwire as an 11-year-old in 1998 (even though most of my memories of that day are of him being furious in traffic), & the same place I’d rode an overnight greyhound from Kentucky to watch Bobby Cox’s last game with my brother in 2010.

    It’s not a national tragedy, but I dunno, it’s just nice to have these little connecting threads in our lives as we change & grow. And this move just resets the clock on all of those, and seemingly completely unnecessarily. I’m no fan of the public funding or the city/suburb dynamics that seem to be at play, but putting all that aside, it just also seems like one of those little bummers. Fenway was never the most beautiful stadium in the country, but people held onto it over & over again when they could have bailed, and now it’s Fenway. Generations of memories, etc. The Ted would’ve never been Fenway, but it could have been our own thing, that was perfectly nice for us, that we could all keep going back to. But the Yankees tore down f-ing Yankee Stadium, of all things, so maybe I’m just delusional re: this whole thing.

  53. @65

    I’m inclined to agree with your first statement. That’s partly what makes the timing of the conclusion of the season disappointing. I want to keep seeing this team! After how bad things were in the second half of last year and first of this year, this team played like a contender. Of course, they will probably make a move somewhere to improve an already decent offense.

    I’m really interested to see who the Braves are connected to on the pitching front. I will say, I’m not looking forward to 4-5 months of MLB Trade Rumors tagging us in every single starting pitcher that’s available. And the moment the Braves is legitimately connected to a pitcher that would cost both prospects and money, you can throw out the notion that they “won’t pay twice” for a pitcher (meaning giving up prospects and money). I mean, what’s the difference between giving up money for one guy and prospects for another and simply offering a blend of prospects and money for another guy?

  54. Snitker has earned a full season audition, but the appeal of Bud Black is that he was a pretty good pitcher and we need someone who can get our young pitchers to the next level. While Foltynewicz, Wisler, both Williams Perez, and even Blair showed occasional flashes of brilliance, they got bombed too often to give confidence in any single one of them. I don’t know what the answer is, but I’m not sure whether Snitker and McDowell are going to be the guys who get them to unlock their potential.

  55. Was there ever a single “mugging” at Turner? I mean, at a game or after. Not in an adjacent neighby in the off season.

  56. 71—The “problem” with Snitker is that you can’t just give him a single full-season audition; it’s got to be a multi-year deal. So, while I think he’s probably done enough to earn the job, if they’re really not sure about him, I can see why they’re being very diligent with another option they like, too.

    I have no opinion on Black. I guess I should probably read more about him.

    64—The Braves don’t have that option on Colly, but they do get to go through the arb process with him.

  57. When it comes to Turner Field, I think the matter of competitiveness is really being neglected. Fulton-County was a multi-purpose stadium until ’91, and Turner Field seems to have been built with a light multi-purpose intent as well. You also have location, which undoubtedly plays into it. Every single team in the NL East has their own stadium built specifically for their team. I would imagine each location was chosen with the intent of having as many Phillies, Nationals, Marlins, and Mets fans being able to get to the stadium and enjoy the product as much as possible. If we’re going to look at how we stack up in the box score, then we also need to look how we stack up in the revenue game. If we have a bad TV deal, and there’s an option on the shelf to compete better in the stadium area, then you have to take it. Was Turner Field a perfectly fine place to watch baseball? Absolutely. But if you can make your product more accessible and more enjoyable to your fan base, and that helps you compete with your direct competitors, then do it.

  58. The distance isn’t terrible geographically. My primary objection was the immediate rejection of an extension to the ballpark. Wrigleyville is the best-case scenario in my mind, and I still think that set up could happen.

    It seems like anything could happen for the Braves right now in a million different ways.

  59. We would hire Black to develop young pitchers. I think the front office was set to hire him when they fired Fredi. Snit has just made it difficult.

    A lot of people would be mad, but I wouldn’t mind seeing the Braves clean house on the coaching staff. I think the Braves need a MLB staff that has proven they can develop young players.

    I would be fine with Snit. I loved how the team played hard for him. He is a clear upgrade from Fredi. I am also glad the FO is looking at all avenues.

  60. If Snit doesn’t get it then I’ll assume he was never really a candidate. He clearly performed well in the interim role, the players love him, the team improved – even granting that’s not all down to him, he did everything reasonably possible to secure the job. And Bud Black Joe Maddon – there’s not an alternative candidate who’s just a no-brainer.

  61. “The distance isn’t terrible geographically. My primary objection was the immediate rejection of an extension to the ballpark. Wrigleyville is the best-case scenario in my mind, and I still think that set up could happen.”

    Wrigleyville is a historic neighborhood connected to the city’s fabric and structure that was built organically over decades.

    Cumberland is an isolated enclave manufactured out of thin air. Just throwing a bunch of shops in a random place doesn’t make it special it just makes it like any other mall. These are not two comparable things.

  62. Fair, obviously everything is on a lesser scale. I think with an extension it will have a similar appeal. Go to baseball, go to bars, have safe ride home.

  63. Fulton-County was built at a time when multi-use was the rage. Turner Field was built for the Olympics. If SunTrust Park is built for the specific purpose of housing the Atlanta Braves, then it could absolutely become part of the Atlanta metro area’s fabric. The Braves’ have a thriving fanbase, and this could definitely work to their benefit. But you have to start with a really good stadium, and they didn’t have that with Turner Field. I really don’t see what the problem is.

    I keep relating this to the Rays’ stadium, and there are so many parallels. I really hope those guys get it right too.

  64. @82

    Weiss only got that job because he was a cheap option who was a “name” to Rockies fans. His previous experience was at a Jesuit high school in a Denver suburb, and his primary role was writing names into a lineup card as ordered by the GM. Placeholder. Pass.

  65. If the new stadium’s appeal is to be able to go to bars before or after the game, how exactly are you supposed to get out of there once said activity is over? Drive?

  66. I don’t know how managers are selected or what makes a good baseball manager. I’m suspicious nobody does. Writing names on the lineup card sounds about like what Fredi did for years, aside from mismanaging the bullpen, bunting way too much, and staying mired in his dugout torpor while his players were arguing with umps.

    If inspiring/motivating one’s players is part of it, Fredi never did that, but it seems like Snitker did as well as anyone I’ve seen. Bud Black, however, was accused (perhaps unfairly) of failing to do the same in San Diego. But he used to pitch, so there’s that.

  67. @83 I’d agree with your post wholeheartedly but STP looks bland, boring, and bereft of any character and frankly looks aesthetically worse to me than Turner. To me, it looks cheap.

  68. It’s pretty clear to me the Johns want a manager with a pitching background. I just wish there was one with a better pedigree than Bud Black, available.

    If they don’t hire Snitker, I hope they clean house. Doing so is risky, though. To be honest, given the way the Braves played in the second half, not giving Snitker the job kinda looks like a dic$ move, IMO.

  69. Absolutely would be a dick move, doubt it will happen. He killed the audition, if he doesn’t get the part he was never really up for it.

  70. I like Snit, but the assumption that he’s earned the job is incorrect to me. Yes, he did well with what he was given, but it doesn’t follow that he’s the best possible choice. If you believe that some other manager, like Black or someone else, really has a significantly better ability to develop young pitching talent, and he can do the tactical and leadership stuff, then you go with the better manager. Again, not saying that’s necessarily true of Bud Black. But I think it’s wrong to imagine that we have a good measure of Snit’s ability to do all parts of managing because the sample size is only part of a season.

  71. I’ve been talked into Bud Black, and if you read Twitter, the Braves may have been talked into him as well.

    Fun facts from a Twitter gentleman: Bud Black was winning pitcher in John Hart’s first managerial win. Later released by GM John Hart. Was also once traded by John Schuerholz.

    DOB speculates that if Black is hired, he expects Snitker to stay on as third base coach. Even though we’d be back to the fear of being Snitkered, I don’t want to lose Snitker out of the organization after the work he’s done here for 40+ years. I can’t imagine it wouldn’t be difficult for Snitker to be demoted and stay on the same staff, but there could have been very clear communication from the beginning that this could happen, and he was good with it.

  72. To say that Turner Field wasn’t “originally intended” for the Braves and to compare it to Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium is missing the point by a wide margin. It pretty much was originally intended for the Braves. Yeah, it was originally Centennial Olympic Stadium, but it was the goofiest looking track and field stadium ever. They already had the baseball sight-lines set up. It was a baseball stadium, specifically built with the Braves in mind, but to be used as the Olympic Stadium first. Tropicana Field is not an appropriate comparison at all.

    On the other side, can we wait until the stadium is actually done before we set to ripping apart how it looks? “It looks cheap” is just about the most meaningless comment one can make before they actually see how it looks. And no, seeing an artist’s rendering and the cement husk don’t count.

  73. I wasn’t going to post about this but, well the season is over, and I have been drinking. I can simultaneously have very good reasons for disliking the stadium move as well as disliking management of the club by liberty media without conflating the two. The new stadium is a poor use of millions in civic resources, and will cause an impact to traffic that is felt by far more than those that voted to have the stadium there. You may argue that Turner Field causes traffic problems Of it’s own and I might even concede that but that’s still no affirmative argument for building another stadium near a potentially even worse traffic chokepoint. Positioning it outside easy reach of public transportation, well I’ll let everyone draw their own conclusions about that. I will say that the most believable ones aren’t very pretty. Good luck with it becoming some sort of economic hotspot by the way, it doesn’t seem to happen very often.

  74. @74 I do recall one shooting of a fan walking home but it was a pretty good poke from the field, like almost to Grant Park.

  75. @100, “Positioning it outside easy reach of public transportation, well I’ll let everyone draw their own conclusions about that”

    I’d be curious to know what percentage of seats in the stadium were taken up by people who used Atlanta’s amazingly efficient public transportation to get there. The one time I used it was a horror show of an overstuffed bus that smelled of barf and beer, lurching along at the same crawl rate as all the cars choking the roadway. The city of Atlanta had 40 years to put a spur into the Braves stadium grounds and they never did. Since we’re in the drawing conclusions game, feel free to draw some on that.

    I remember reading about two ladies getting mugged near the stadium on a game night a couple years back.

  76. There are way better ways to get transported to the stadium than Atlanta public transportation. The move is not going to change this at all.

  77. @98 I agree that we need to at least see what it really looks like before passing judgment. That said, the renderings leave a little something to be desired. It certainly looks like a baseball stadium, but other than a few big screens or some signs there’s nothing that really identifies this place as the home of the Braves. How about some really big statues of Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and John Smoltz along the outfield skyline? I want opposing hitters to be staring at something that is imposing.

    What I think of when imagining a really great stadium for the Braves is a place that is built to celebrate the team’s high points. Everything in the renderings looks nice, but it’s so full of corporate logos that it has a sterile feel to it. They should consider what everyone is going to see on TV and dial back the corporate logos prominently visible all over the place. You want it subconsciously there but not totally noticeable.

  78. One of Atlanta’s main shortcomings as a modern city is that its public transportation doesn’t extend to its most populous suburbs, like it does in almost every other modern American city.

    Why not? Again, draw your own conclusions.

  79. @105, This particular conclusion drawing has nothing to do with certifying that public transportation was some kind of advantage for Turner Field or Atlanta-Fulton County. It wasn’t. Fans whose only ability to attend Braves games is by public transportation is probably in the realm of a mathematical rounding error.

    Anyway, ride-sharing is going to take care of a lot of this in the future…smaller stadium, smaller parking lot, people wanting to hang out before and/or after the game with an actual (if admittedly manufactured) scene around the stadium? Those people will want to Uber in, catch a game, get a buzz on, chase skirt and hang out. I’ll probably be one of them. It’s the way moving people around is trending and it’ll have a growing impact in the way people come and go to ballparks, and MARTA trains and barf buses won’t be able to keep up. Public transportation is really not *that* big of a conclusion-drawing deal for the Braves unless you want to talk about how City of Atlanta dropped the ball on it for decades.

  80. @105 (and several others)

    Public transportation in Atlanta is terrible. There is little desire by anyone to improve it.

  81. Public transportation is a sad element of Atlanta’s landscape. The climate when it was built sadly (OK, tragically) did not allow it to expand to the burbs to be useful today, and today, while the climate is much better (yes, folks, sorry Cobb County is not the same group of people it used to be) the cost to expand is prohibitive and the geographic challenge is two order of magnitudes greater (area of a circle being proportional to square of the radius and all that). Add to that yes, Marta and the City of Atlanta are not models for well run organizations (not that many cities are) and public transport for all practical purposes a dead issue in ATL (Streetcars aside, I guess). No one (taxpayers, politicians) will sign up for the economic burden that a proper expansion or rebuild of marta would take. Sadly, we’ll keep building more lanes and roads, placing more people in cars, and so we’ll build more roads. It’s a spiral but one that I don’t think will be solved soon if at all.

    As for % of fans at Turner Field who use Marta I think there was a stat a while back and it was a bit under 10%. Not statistically significant and likely to be replaced by people who will be more inclined to drive to Cobb instead of downtown.

  82. I wonder what percentage of that 10% (which seems high to me) used public transportation because it was their only option to get to a game? I’d bet it’s a vanishingly small number. Most people that use Marta use it because of convenience…maybe they’re one of the “lucky ones” who live within walking distance of a station. Using Marta to get to Phillips or the Dome or the airport makes all the sense in the world. To Turner Field it was, to me, an extra level of hassle. Extra levels, plural…

  83. We have the same arguments here in Dallas about public transportation. All the southern “sun belt” cities that grew up around the car and interstate system have sprawling, suburban layouts and a dearth of public transportation. It doesn’t have to be sinister or conspiratorial, though I’m sure that’s a more interesting narrative.

  84. As someone who would almost never dream of going to the Georgia Dome or Philips Arena by car (even when, on a couple of occasions, I had access to a free parking pass), I wound up throwing my hands in the air and driving to Turner Field about 60 percent of the time, maybe 70. It essentially did not have MARTA access. When the nearest train station is two miles away and you have to trudge all the way through freaking Underground Atlanta to access the bus (and I know that they moved it to West End this year, which is an admirable job of closing the barn door after all the horses have run out), that doesn’t count as MARTA accessible. By those horrendous standards, the new stadium is MARTA accessible. You’ll be able to catch a bus from Arts Center or Midtown station up to the Cumberland area. Is that very convenient? Of course not. But neither was Turner Field. And the city’s desire to rack up parking profits instead of making it convenient for fans to get to the stadium is a major reason why. They don’t get a pass on this, or at least they shouldn’t. But they currently are from a great number of people acting like Turner Field was a mass transit utopia. From a mass transit perspective, it sucked.

    Secondly (and this is probably whistling past the graveyard, but bear with me), relations between the city and the suburbs aren’t very good, obviously. Should MARTA extend to suburbs other than Sandy Springs? Yeah, that would be nice. And some of the reasons why it doesn’t are undeniably ugly. But at some point, insofar as most people agree that it would be better if Atlanta and its suburbs were on better terms, you have to ask yourself if you’re being part of the solution or part of the problem. I really don’t see why, at the end of the day, having Atlanta’s baseball team playing in Cobb County couldn’t, theoretically, be a major bridge between the two sides, though it’s obviously tough to see right now immediately after the Braves have played their last game in the City of Atlanta and before they’ve ever played a game in Cobb County. But if you’re gonna sit there and decide that you’re not gonna root for the baseball team you probably grew up rooting for because they’ve moved 10 miles up the road, are you being part of the solution or part of the problem?

  85. It’s been a couple days and I need to write a wrap-up, but this is my first request for offseason content.

    As usual, we’ll do some “Where Do We Go From Here?” and some player previews, probably a Keltner List, and some other stuff. Anyone who’d like to write, whether you’d like to do one of those or to propose your own idea, PLEASE email me!

  86. Even if there was a MARTA station at Turner Field it wouldn’t matter one bit to me and millions of other metro residents. It takes me longer to drive to a station than it does to drive downtown.

    Since there has never been convenient public transport options to Turner Field or AFCS, the entire topic is pretty irrelevant from my perspective. It’s something for SJW-types to latch onto I guess, but the new stadium is a train and a bus ride away, just like the old.

  87. I need help in understanding why such strong interest in Bud Black. I think the reason why the Braves didn’t hire Pendleton or Perez become the interim is because of this exact situation. It almost has the feel that the already had Bud Black lined up and Snitker has made this a tougher decision than they wanted it to be. Give Snitker a decent rotation and lets see what happens. Bud Black isn’t an upgrade IMO.

  88. @118

    The word on Black is he is really good with young pitchers.

    I agree they probably have been kicking the tires on him for a while.

  89. @115 and 119, as I understand the methodology, the top plays would all have to be either a multi-run homer or the prevention of a multi-run homer, a al Ender. But I’m not entirely sure I understand the methodology — how is the highest possible leverage situation “the bottom of the ninth, with two outs and the home team down by two runs with two runners on base, in final game of the season where a win clinches a division championship and a loss results in elimination.” Why not down 3 with 3 runners on base?

  90. A friend scored me a ticket to the WC game in Flushing tonight. Guess I’ll be the quietest guy in the joint… Sure hope it’s quiet when I leave.

  91. I realize that ultimate outcome is unimportant to whatever metric he’s using, but shouldn’t it carry weight if we’re looking back on the most important plays of the season? At the end of the season, that play carried absolutely no importance whatsoever in deciding who made the playoffs. The Mets made it anyway and it obviously had no effect on us in that regard.

    In that sense, it seems a lot like that late September loss the Cardinals had to the Mets in 2011 where they gave up six runs in the ninth inning and blew a 4-run lead. At the time, it seemed like that game was a hugely important break for us. Looking back, it meant precisely squat.

    I’m not trying to trash the play or anything. It was probably our best win of the year. But I don’t think it was the second-biggest play of the MLB season.

  92. @123

    I actually kind of sort of hope the Mets win tonight and then lose in the next round. If the Giants win, I’ll pull joy out of the Mets’ loss, don’t get me wrong…but the sooner this insipid Giants even-year thing gets stamped out, the better, as far as I’m concerned.

  93. #125
    You wouldn’t think like that if you lived here — trust me.

    Watching their fans suffer up-close is the gift that keeps on giving.

  94. What do you guys think of Ron Washington? His age is a concern but the guy put together 6 good seasons in a row with the Rangers. I don’t know a lot about his management style, but it looks like we could do a lot worse.

  95. Washington’s postseason management was positively Frediesque, and his departure from the Rangers was done under mysterious circumstances. He seems like a perfectly cromulent pick barring those two caveats.

    Black I don’t know what to think of. His resume in San Diego was not impressive, but he didn’t have a lot to work with, and managers don’t always blossom in their first gig. Bochy was seen as a fairly forgettable manager until he got to San Fran; Francona is one of the best managers in the game IMO but washed out in Philly during his first go-round, etc. Black was highly regarded before he became a manager, he was generally perceived to have done a good job in SD given the quality of his rosters, and Washington was on him last winter before their ownership cheaped out, so he’s hardly a pariah.

    Snitker earned the gig if you view the second half as his audition, but I’m not sure you should. Ask the Cubs or the Reds how well giving the job to a guy presiding over a dead-cat bounce works long-term.

    It’s a decision that’s tough to arm-chair quarterback.

  96. Again, whether or not Turner Field had adequate access to public transportation is not an affirmative argument for building another one without it as well.

  97. @130, Who is making an affirmative argument for building a new stadium without adequate public transportation? Speaking for myself and I assume others, I’m saying it’s a not a good case for Braves hate. When you’re trying to seduce people into “drawing conclusions” about whatever pet grievance you want to take fire, shouldn’t you have to first prove there’s a conclusion to be drawn?

    The Atlanta Braves have never, ever, had adequate public transportation, in an era spanning Hank Aaron to Freddie Freeman. We’re all super-fans in spite of that detail. That’s because it is irrelevant.

  98. Change of topic here: Terrible, lousy job calling balls & strikes tonight in NL wild card. Who is that masked man??

  99. Oh yeah, that guy. Lol.

    I really think MadBum is the MVP in all of baseball over the last several years. He’s reaching legendary status. The Mets pull their ace but the Giants would leave theirs in for 15 innings if they had to.

  100. @131, I’m not basing my argument on “Braves hate” whatever that is. From a purely civic standpoint, not locating the stadium near public transportation, is effectively forgoing the duty of the local government as stakeholder to ameliorate the impact of the stadium on its citizenry as well as those noncotizen motorists who will be directly affected. I think I’ll go back to lurking now.

  101. #131
    No, the point is that the suburbs of Atlanta are, um, rather lacking for never approving public transportation in the first place. The idea that they’re inadequate as is completely misses the point (my point anyway).

    If anyone travels around this country (or Europe), you’ll see what I mean. It’s different and it’s better.

    Speaking of public transportation, the Long Island Railroad ride to the game was fun & full of nerves, but the 7-train ride home tonight was purely delightful.

    Now, that was a ballgame.

  102. @140, be that as it may, it has nothing to do with the Braves. They are a for-profit entertainment business, not a branch of GA state government. If the travel logistics around the new stadium are terrible then they will feel it in their bottom line.

    I very much agree with @112. If you want commuter rail service to Cobb then this is the absolute best thing that could happen – there will be motivation and a call to action, where before there wasn’t. It might take 20 years, but that’s always the case.

  103. The lack of commuter rail to Cobb County has nothing to do with sports. Sports will do nothing to bring commuter rail service to Cobb County. It being the case that the “no politics” rule seems to deny even mentioning basic historical fact about what *did* and *does* drive Cobb County’s aversion to transit from “the city,” it seems impossible to discuss this issue in any detail or length.

    I find people who are upset because the Braves are “leaving Atlanta” to be silly. Cumberland is as part of the urban metro fabric as Summerhill has been in a century or more; the fact that it is a kilometer outside of the official ATL zip codes is utterly meaningless.

    I find people who deny that Cobb County has a rather problematic history and continues in similar political veins today to be silly, bordering on stupid. If those people have a problem with the sarcastic dubbing of the new stadium “White Flight Field” they should consider picking up a local history book.

    As a resident of Fulton County, I’m perfectly sanguine with the Cobbites getting shafted for stadium funding for a change. I’d much rather spend our money on the Beltline and on-going neighborhood renewal in-town.

  104. @143

    This pretty much nails it all the way around, except I’m slightly more optimistic that this might, eventually, help to push toward some sort of commuter rail. Certainly isn’t happening anytime soon, though, and I fully admit my optimism might be completely pie in the sky.

  105. I think the more likely impetus for Cobb to come in out of the “No MARTA ever!” wilderness is the rapidly changing demographics of the county itself.

  106. Yeah, I’m hopeful for the extension. The announcement made it clear that there were non-budget reasons, but I’m not sure there won’t be some personnel changes after how the whole deal was handled.

  107. Hey, let’s keep talking about an issue orthogonal to Braves baseball because we have a political axe we want to grind while pretending to be subtle about it (lip service to the no politics rule, donchaknow) and insulting everyone who doesn’t want to read about it on Braves Journal as being opposed to “history”. Whatever makes you feel virtuous, Sam.

  108. @139

    The one big thing about pitching decisions is a potential indicator of how deep a pitcher goes into games. Julio was 7-10 this season. He had his lowest amount of QS’s this year, meaning he got bombed out of the stadium and it decided the game (thus the high loss total), but he didn’t pitch deep enough into games to get wins (thus the low win total). As Alex mentioned, much of his rate stats were the best of his career (he lowered his BB/9, H/9 and HR/9, and he increased his K/9), but his innings per start is now on a downward trend, and he’s just not the horse he needs to be. If he could get back to his age-23 season in 2014 when he had the most innings pitched and the most QS starts, a good offense could get him a 20-win season. But nowadays, he just doesn’t get the wins because he doesn’t go deep enough into the game regularly.

  109. John, I don’t want to tax your capacities or anything, but if you get a minute, consider that the forced demand to *not* discuss issues relevant to the Braves and their new stadium build/location because “no politics” is, itself, a strongly political statement/act.

  110. That’s embarrassing idiocy. I actually agree with you, except with a hefty dose of nuance mixed in and the acknowledgement that there are competing tellings of this “history”. When you can’t fathom, however, that your own perspective is even a little contentious, you are gobsmacked when someone suggests you’re being political. It’s mere reality when you have such a narrow worldview.

    It shouldn’t be hard to see that it is political to talk about the *politics* of why there is not rail to Cobb County. It is not political to simply not want to discuss those politics on a baseball forum.

  111. I find it an interesting and enjoyable topic. WTF else is there to talk about at this point in the off-season?

  112. MLB Playoff rooting preference:

    1 Cubs
    2 Indians
    3 Rangers
    4 Nats
    5 Dodgers
    6 Blue Jays
    7 Red Sox
    8 Getting stung by a swarm of bees
    9 Giants #eybs

  113. OK, let’s talk about how the presidential candidates’ corporate tax proposals will affect Liberty Media and the Braves’ payroll. I mean, it affects the Braves, so you’re being “deeply political” if you don’t want to talk about it, AMIRITE???

  114. I am literally never “gobsmacked when someone suggests” I’m being political, because I’m always being political. Just like you, and every other primate on the planet. And yes, John, denying the politics of the Braves move to Cobb County, in a Braves specific forum, is in fact political. Declaring history, demographics, the tensions between the northern arc season ticket base and the less, um…, pale neighborhoods surrounding Turner Field off limits because “no politics” is in fact a strong-arm political move. I’m more than happy to avoid talk of the national election, tax theory, gold buggery, what the hell to do about the clusterfuck of Syria, all of that shit. Those are in point of fact irrelevant to this forum. But the Braves moving to Cobb County, and thus the history of Cobb County in the greater metro area and the interplay of that history with the team’s current moves and actions, is 100% on topic for this forum.

    But by all means, let’s talk about whether or not we should extend Jason Heyward 15 years or 25 years again.

  115. No, Sam. Some people can compartmentalize their politics and not spew it all over one of the few areas of the internet that is thankfully not already ankle-deep in it.

  116. Compartmentalization, and the strong desire, bordering on need, to demand certain forums be “safe spaces” for your desire/need, is in fact political. But now I’m just trolling you.

  117. I’m not sure you can talk about the new stadium without some aspect of local politics. It’s far more local than political in my mind.

  118. One assumes the rat-fucking that Tim Lee and the Braves pulled off on Cobb tax payers is also off limits, cause “no politics,” right?

  119. Some days Braves Journal is what keeps my day from being a complete and total bore. Frequently fun to read the antics on all the sides of a discussion. Keep on entertaining me guys.

  120. Why is the University of Florida dragging their feet about Saturday’s game? Seems like it should have been moved or rescheduled yesterday.

  121. @163

    Based on the storm path, it seems they much prefer to move it back to 7PM on Saturday. But it’s probably a logistical nightmare. The much inferior but logistically easier route would be to move it to 11/19, but both teams would lose a home game and lose a tune-up game before they play their rival. It’s an easy decision for South Carolina because it’s obvious: Matthew would be coming right through there at game time. But storm projections show Matthew being well out of Florida by Saturday afternoon, and giving them an extra 7 hour pad is going to be very attractive if they can do it. This is a harder plan than Tennessee’s “hire a new coach every two years” plan, Smitty.

  122. This is bad, man. I’m definitely worried about my east coast friends. With the fatalities in Haiti and the Bahamas, this is the first time in a while I’m really worried about a ‘cane. But if it’s out of Florida by Saturday, I hope UF/LSU goes back to where it belongs: a prime-time 7:30 start. This is their punishment for moving it out of that time slot for the first time in years.

  123. @166

    Well, they eventually made the right choice. Now will the SEC make the right choice and tell both schools to swallow the idiotic games against Presbyterian and South Alabama so they can play each other on 11/19?

  124. UF/LSU canceled. No makeup date – if there is one – announced.

    Potential fustercluck in the SEC East. If you don’t play UF/LSU, then Florida’s spared a potential loss. If UT loses to A&M and Bama (certainly not impossible) and Florida wins out (ditto), then Florida’s at 6-1 and UT’s at 6-2 with the tiebreaker over Florida. Then what?

    Also no word yet on USC/UGA, but the SEC has always seemed A-OK with Georgia players destroying their bodies on substandard playing surfaces, so my bet is that the game is on, monsoon or no.

  125. @151 Julio Teheran is not on a downwards trend of IP per start. Julio averaged 6.27 IP per start this year, which is almost exactly on his career average and slightly up from 2015 (6.08). In fact, this season was nearly identical to Julio’s 2013, the only real difference being the win-loss record.

    2013 – 30 GS (185.2 IP), 3.20 ERA (14W – 7L)
    2016 – 30 GS (188 IP), 3.21 ERA (7W – 10L)

    As you can see, the lack of Ws on Julio’s ledger has a whole lot more to do with run support than anything JT is or isn’t doing. It’d be nice if he could stay healthy and throw 200 – 220 IP next year over 32-33 starts, but as far as being a starter who goes deep in games, 2016 Julio was basically the same as he’s always been (with the exception of 2014 – his best season to date).

  126. You’re right; his innings per start is not on a downward trend. His overall innings are (221 to 200 to 188), and his innings per start is down from his 2014 season. While he did edge out last year in innings per start, his quality start rate is declining, which is the biggest problem. My point was that he doesn’t consistently get deep into games to factor into the decision. He gets bombed out of the stadium so often that even with some of his fantastic performances, he’s not going to be someone to rack up a lot of wins. That’s really my point. In 2014, when he averaged almost 7 IP per start and 25 of his 33 starts were QS. It’s a stupid stat, but it at least shows that he gave his time a chance to win more often. And with his salary increasing, the expectations need to increase as well.

  127. I’m not sure how I feel about Florida having to play LSU instead of Presbyterian a week before playing FSU. Depending on how things go over the next several weeks, though, they may need a win against LSU as a resume builder. Yes, there could become a divisional record issue, but Tennessee sucks, so who cares about them? If they lose to Bama and A&M, then that’s their problem. In all seriousness, I wouldn’t be surprised if Florida ends up playing LSU on 11/19, especially if there’s an issue with the SEC East. And I’m sure there will be since UT will definitely lose to those two guys. That’s what they do. They lose.

  128. Ya know, I wasn’t much of a trash talker against Tennessee until they beat Florida. And then watching Tennesee’s fan’s reactions to a 10-point win was all I needed to know. They were elated. They beat Florida, you see. FINALLY! After 14 or whatever years, they beat Florida. And it was SUCH a big deal because… they’re losers. They haven’t won the SEC East since 2007, they haven’t won an SEC championship since 1998, and they switch out their coaches every few years nowadays. And they’re hyped every freaking year.

  129. You are the most classic Florida fan on the face of the earth. Everyone else is classless except you. Keep thinking of yourself that way, buddy. I’ve seen some shit in Gainesville at football games you wouldn’t believe your fans did if I told you, because it’s impossible your fans could do such a thing. They’re classy and everybody loves them. Yet we’re the trailer trash, huh? Right. Can’t lose a damn football game without going out of your mind about how all the mean Tennessee fans were actually celebrating after the great tragedy that is a Florida loss. I think you will find the postgame scenes in Gainesville in 2015 and in Knoxville in 2016 to be almost exactly similar if you go back and look, so give me a damn break.

  130. Amazing note from Mark Bradley’s column today. Combined WAR/salary of JHey, JUpton, Gattis, Kimbrel, Melvin, Alex Wood, and Simba this year 12.2/$78.37M. Combined WAR/Salary of Freddie, Julio, and Ender this year 15.2/$15.83M

  131. I’ll let my record speak for itself. I’m really not a big trash talker. Honest to goodness, it’s just not my thing.

    Florida has certainly had their down periods, and they’re in the middle of yet another one. Everything is cyclical. Florida had their run over FSU, and vice versa, and it will always go back and forth (and it could very well be shifting to Miami again). UGA has had Florida’s number at times, and vice versa. LSU seems to have our number on the regular. Shoot, Vandy plays us tough almost every single year. No trash talk there. But it’s not cyclical with Tennessee. Tennessee has consistently had their bell rung by Florida for the last 25 years (20-6 since they started playing yearly), and after one freaking win in 12 years, you’d have thought the Volunteer fans somehow figured out how to win the Super Bowl. Tennessee is a mid-tier program that is constantly hyped as a national title contender. Every year they get these gaudy preseason rankings, and they’ve done nothing. They are so far below Georgia and Florida that’s it not even funny.

    With that said, I never called Tennessee fans classless. I never called Tennessee fans trailer trash. In fact, for the first 18 years of my life, I lived in mobile homes, and I would appreciate if you wouldn’t put those words in my mouth, tough guy. My words are directed at some over-exuberance over one win, and that’s where it ends. Have a great day.

  132. It’s the politics I tell you. The politics poisoned the well for the college football pundits.

    In my opinion, all SEC fans are scum. I know what you’re saying–“why don’t you come over here and say that to my blotchy, alcoholic, racist face???”*

    In due time.

    *this is a direct Daniel Tosh quote about Patriots fans, btw ;)

  133. My experience has been that every team in the SEC has about 10% rabid fans. Usually there are about 1 to 2 percent that are unbearable to the point of being criminal. I don’t hate LSU, but they seem to have a higher percentage in the latter category than any team in the SEC.

  134. @182

    You did call Tennessee fans classless, though not in that particular post. I apologize for the trailer trash thing, though.

    As far as the rest, I’ll just leave it at this: Your knowledge of college football history outside of the last 15 years is a little lacking.

  135. When I was watching the UGA-UT game, they showed a clip of the great Larry Munson calling a last second TD win by UGA over UT. “They crushed their face!”, crowed the classy Larry. Crushed their face??? Really dawgs?

    An ACC fan, I’d been ambivalent until that point. I began to root hard for a UT heart breaker. It made it especially sweet to see that Hail Mary come down orange.

  136. Your knowledge of college football history outside of the last 15 years is a little lacking.

    Enlighten me. Are you going to tell me next about how Notre Dame, Nebraska, and BYU are top programs? That Barry Switzer is going to take those Sooners to a Big 8 championship!

    For real, what are we talking about here? Since 1976, Florida is 24-7 against Tennessee. How far back are you expecting me to go? It’s not a rivalry. It’s not a rivalry in the same way Tennessee and Kentucky are not a rivalry.

    Mark my words. If Florida is fortunate to beat UGA or LSU or FSU this year, you won’t hear much out of me. Tennessee is just… different.

  137. @188

    Yeah…different as in better. Since, let me jog your memory, Florida didn’t beat Tennessee this year…like, they lost. I might continue mentioning this until it seems you’ve accepted that it, in fact, happened. (Or until we get told to pipe down, I suppose.)

  138. such a fearful approach to the Wall
    presaged a calamitous call
    your glove withdrawn, in absentia
    King Cole the devastate, induced dementia.

  139. Old King Cole
    he’s attempting to bowl
    so he called on his fiddlers three
    while two observed
    the one demurred
    some place he’d rather be.

  140. the decision you hatch
    that you won’t try to catch
    while medically laudable
    was instantly audible
    the shock to the crowd
    you should have allowed
    how much you’d be goaded
    the bases were loaded!

  141. Football is what SEC fans talk about while other university graduates are reading books or doing math.

  142. Would think McDowell now makes his way to Baltimore. Kinda surprised at this, but with the Black situation, I probably shouldn’t be.

  143. I may be off on this, but didn’t we just extend Jim Johnson last week mostly b/c of how well he & McDowell seemed to work together? not that JJ should influence staffing decisions, but the timing just seems weird.

  144. Oh yeah, that does seem weird. He hasn’t exactly pitched well at all under anyone else over the past few years…

  145. Georgia owed Tennessee nothing from the Hobnail Boot ’01. Even with that loss, Tennessee was poised to win the SEC Championship and play Miami in the Rose Bowl. Then they inexplicably lost to LSU in Atlanta.

    So take it up with Saban, is what I’m saying.

    (UT would’ve been massacred by The U, but that holds true for anyone.)

    @186:

    “An ACC fan, I’d been ambivalent until that point.”

    I smell a new conference slogan!

    ACC Football: “Meh.”

  146. I kind of understand us getting rid of McDowell, but he did a very good job with the bullpen IMO. I agree that this seems to support Bud Black as manager.

  147. This Florida/LSU stuff is lunacy. The LSU AD is posturing that they made this generous offer to Florida, and LSU won’t reschedule. Yeah, right. Florida is not going to sign up to play three straight years in Baton Rouge regardless of how many plane tickets are offered. It’s just disingenuous for LSU’s AD to insult our intelligence that they made an attractive offer.

    If the options are playing it on 11/19 or not playing it at all, I think I’m leaning towards not playing it at all. LSU would play 3 SEC road games in 13 days, and Florida would lose their tuneup before playing @FSU. LSU and Florida would both lose a home game, and since Florida already stands to lose a home game, then they might as well not play it. And if Florida wins out, taking the SEC East from Tennessee this way wouldn’t be too bad. :)

    But at the end of the day, games get cancelled. Florida missed a tuneup game at the beginning of last season to rain, and they never made it up. It is what it is.

  148. Jim Johnson is one of those sinker guys who flourished under Roger, but I think other guys suffered from his philosophy. Wisler in particular could benefit from a reset.

  149. I appreciate what McDowell had done for us for 11 years, I think he’ll have no problems getting another job, but I’m glad we’re getting a change. Let someone else more fitted for the job of developing young pitchers take the task. I don’t think this necessarily points to a Black hiring, by the way. Snitker didn’t choose McDowell and may very well want a new pitching coach either way.

  150. I’m fascinated by Mazzone’s pitching regiment (throw all the time at varying intensities). Not sure I’ve ever seen a coach fall out of favor so quickly.

    So that’s my vote. Probably not a shot in hell, but I’d love to see it.

  151. I made both DOB and Ben Duronio Mad On The Internet with a single tongue-in-cheek tweet about McDowell causing pitcher injuries. Riding pretty high right now, you guys.

  152. I do think you could be on to something Stu. Obviously there are many factors, but the Braves record of pitching injuries under McDowell has been really bad. I think a portion of that could lie in the conditioning program under Roger’s watch.

  153. @214 The Mazzone approach was the Sain approach. Apply it to legs, and it’s essentially the same one used for training runners. I don’t understand why it’s not widely accepted in baseball.

    I think Mazzone fell out of favor it Atlanta because management felt he was getting too big for his britches.

  154. I get falling out with one team. The crazy bit is going from a genius to jobless so quickly.

    He was seen as magical. Three hall-of-famers flourished under him, he revitalized washed-up vets, and the team had fourteen straight division titles based on historically great pitching. He goes to the O’s for two disappointing seasons, and then his career is over.

  155. Mazzone was seen as too old-school to relate to younger pitchers. He had problems communicating with them and even scared some of them, on both the Braves and Orioles.

  156. About the “no politics rule” on this blog, I’m assuming Mac Thomason instituted it for reasons other than the urge to make a “strongly political statement/act.”

    I see it as a pretty simple rule enshrined to make a priority of amity between commenters. Political topics inevitably turn people who would otherwise be all about talking Braves and baseball and building goodwill with each other into enemies. It seems to be a fact of human nature and it is one that wise forum owners/moderators are cognizant of.

    Mac is no longer here but perhaps whomever holds the reins now can clarify what “no politics” means, if only to spare those of us who have been striving to work under that rule any moralizing lectures that labels us as stupid and/or political ourselves.

  157. Too bad about McDowell. I thought he did a great job during his tenure, filling the big shoes of Leo Maxine.

  158. If it were possible to create a separate space/thread where people who wanted to discuss/fight about the stadium could do so, that’d be ideal.

  159. @223, I am totally with you. Bashing the stadium is, after a years time, totally played out. Especially when it’s politicized.

  160. I have to say, I’m all for the no politics rule in general, but the stadium is directly related to Braves baseball. As long as it doesn’t go too far afield into local politics (which it won’t if the stadium is always within reaching distance of whatever you’re talking about), I think it’s well within bounds. Like Sam said the other day, general politics that have nothing to do with the Braves should be out of bounds, but I don’t see how the stadium is. Besides, there’s nothing else interesting to talk about right now.

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