Posted on: March 30, 2008 2:41 pm
Posted on: March 28, 2008 11:35 pm
Edited on: March 28, 2008 11:42 pm
I was thinking about the Braves' key players, and wondering how different our stars will look in a couple years. And it will be very, very different indeed. Smoltz has been a key piece for a long time, and I don't see him hanging around past 2009. Who knows when Chipper will retire? I could see him getting frustrated at all the injurys and hanging 'em up early. Some other pieces will also be leaving after this year or not long after. Glavine and Hampton will probably not be included in next years team. The real wild-card in Teixeira. Will he stay? If he's here, he's a huge part of this team. But that's another discussion. The real question is, who will step into the rotation next year and beyond? For next year, I think Smoltz will still be around, so he's #2 in the rotation. Hudson will obviously fill the ace role for the next few years, so he's #1. But who steps in as the #3, #4, and 5#? I think we can slot Jair Jurrjens in as our #3(or higher) for quite a while, so he's #3. We need a guy like Jo-Jo Reyes to step up and be our #4 next year, but that may be an unlikely proposition. Chuck James, Jeff Bennet, and even Buddu Carlyle could be part of the rotation next year, but only James has a possible place in the Braves' future. As of right now, James and Reyes should fill the #4 and 5# slots in our rotation next year. This will not get it done in argueably the best division in the MLB. We need at least 1 more starter before heading into next season. Charlie Morton might be a productive starter as soon as next year, but we've all seen Bobby Cox's favorite spring player crash and burn before. Oliver(gag) Perez might be an option on the free-agent market next year. A trade for a SP using some of our outfield prospects could work, especially if Tex re-signs. We need a depenable starter, via trade or free agency in the next 2 years, that's for sure. Thoughts?
(Jeff Bennet, Buddy Carlyle, Chuck James, Charlie Morton)
Posted on: March 27, 2008 2:52 pm
Edited on: March 27, 2008 3:04 pm
Jason Heyward got the call to the bigs today. But he'll have to wait a couple years before he gets that call in April-September. He's getting some playing time today VS the Mets. I don't believe he has an at-bat yet. I will update later.
Heyward just got his first AB. A strike out on a pretty pitch on the outside corner. The guy is huge! 6-5 230 LB. He'd certaintly be a big target if he gets moved to 1B. Looks like a really nice prospect.
Posted on: March 26, 2008 8:32 pm
Still healthy. Am I the only one that's surprised? He's looked really good this spring.
He broke out of his slump today, hitting a HR and a 2B in a game against the Nationals. Good to see him getting hot before the season starts.
Yates was traded to the Pirates today. Todd Redmond came back to the Braves in return. He was rated as having the best change-up in the minors. Terrific control. Had a decent year in A ball(I think) last year. Looks to be a decent prospect. Yates was OK last year, but he was going to be traded or going to go through waivers. I don't understand this move from the Pirates prospective, as they probably could've gotten him when the Braves put him on waivers. I guess that's why they're the Pirates. Read more here.
The Yates trade really increases all of their chances to make the bull-pen. I think Boyer wins the spot.
Posted on: March 24, 2008 7:42 pm
Some injury news from the Braves
Still healthy. He pitched an impressive 6 innings on Sunday. He gave up 2 runs, both off of solo homers in the 6th. Probably was just a bit of fatiuge. He has looked good all spring. I'm liking him chances to be healthy for most of the season more and more. Find more here.
Some shoulder soreness will likely send Smoltz to the DL for opening day. However, it would be retroactive to a few days ago, so he would only miss 1 start. Going on the DL would also line-up Smoltz for the first Braves-Mets game. Find more here.
Posted on: March 24, 2008 12:00 am
Edited on: March 28, 2008 11:04 pm
Schafer got sent down to AA camp a couple days ago. Not a surprise, and not at all a critique of Schafer. He made a great impression on a lot of people this spring, but he never had a shot to make the team. Kotsay was the starter and there was no way Schafer was going to ride the bench. I love what I've seen from Schafer. He can be a 30-30 man if he makes the most of his potential. I think he at least has 20-25 seasons in his future. He also has great defence. Terrific range. I really like his swing. Short, compact, powerful, and smooth. He should bat lead-off when he first breaks through, but he has the makings of a 3 hitter. He deserves all the hype, at least in my opinion.
Posted on: March 21, 2008 10:21 pm
I think this one comes down to health, mainly that of Pedro Martinez and Carlos Beltran. We all know about Pedro, and Beltran has taken 6 months to recover from simple sugery. Seems a bit odd. There are a lot of health risks on this team, so it'll probably come down to luck to see if they have a good season. Johan Santana is another player to watch(surprise!), if he experience any drop-off in performance if could spell doom for the hated Mets.
It's all in the rotation this year. Mike Hampton needs to stay healthy, but the Braves can win without him. A lot rides on the shoulders of Jair Jurrjens, as the Braves really need him to have a good rookie year. Will Glavine bounce back? Hopefully. The one thing we do know is that this team will hit. A lot. Chipper Jones really needs to have a big year if the Braves are to have a successful season.
The Phillies hopes ride on two pitchers; their closer this year and their closer last year. Can Myers come back to the rotation? Can Lidge come back to not being a nut-case?(come on, a lot off people have given of home runs to Albert Pujols, get over it). If both Lidge and Myers have good years this team could be the NL East winners. Howard cutting down on his K's would sure help this team out, but the threesome of Howard, Utley, and Hamels form a team that can be scarey this year. They can certainly out-perform my predictions.
The Nats are a really interesting team. On one hand, they have some really nice hitting talent(Dukes, Milledge), and on the other hand, they don't have much pitching(Matt Chico? Really?). They may be intriguing, but they won't do much for a couple years.
They'll be good in a few years, maybe even sooner than the Nats, but they'll have a tough year in '08. They got a nice haul for Miggy and D-train, so watch those prospects. Their progression could be one of the only bright spots for the Fish this year.
Posted on: March 21, 2008 7:16 pm
I have been hearing that the Titans are going to trade Pacman for a draft pick. The problem is that late-round draft picks are what have been bandied about. I wouldn't trade Jones unless we can get a 2nd or a 3rd and a 4th. If we're not going to get one of those options, we should keeps Jones. Perhaps his stock will be higher next year.