Uggla’s Replacement – The Case for the Uninspiring

The news was surprising as it broke shortly before Tuesday’s game against the Phillies.  Dan Uggla was headed to the Disabled List and would undergo LASIK, a procedure that he had been hoping to avoid until at least the winter.  Whether the Braves were able to push Uggla into it or Uggla’s worsening state at the plate prompted Uggla to finally agree to do it now rather than later is not all that important. It’s…

A Lead Heading Into the Sixth – Call It

Much has been written – even here – about the Atlanta Braves bullpen.  They tend to focus on the ERA, best in baseball.  Or the closer – also best in baseball (see below).  Maybe someone can whine about bullpen usage (hi). There’s a number I have been looking at over the past two days that astonishes me and fortunately, the Braves were able to be nice enough to give me an example of the number…

Youth is Served

Rebuilding teams often start with young players getting their shot to play regardless of production.  The Astros and Cubs, for example, are knee-deep into a rebuild stage.  The once-proud Astros no longer bring Killer B’s but “who’s that?’s” instead.  Theo Epstein is considered the right man for the job in Chicago to bring the Cubs back to prominence and he masterfully sold early-and-often with a tough market this year.  Dayton Moore’s Royals are finally showing…

FUN-DA-MENTALS!

There is a misconception about SABR guys.  Seamheads don’t appreciate the fundamentals, they say.  “They” are idiots, but that’s nothing new.  SABR guys appreciate the basics of the game quite a good deal.  Hell, they even went so far to create things that attempt the quantify someone’s base-running ability beyond just stolen bases.  After all, the ability to steal bases is only a minor part of base-running. In the recent series against the Washington Nationals,…

August 7: My Day

I don’t talk too much about myself here because frankly, this blog is about the Braves.  However, because it’s August 7th, this blog, for a day, becomes about the Braves and me.  You see, today is my birthday and I’m forced to ask…how do the Braves play on my Name Day? In 1982, I was born.  Had I been born about an hour earlier, I would have been an August 6th baby.  However, the seventh…

Wait, What?

Sometimes, you miss little subtle things in the numbers.  Time to find them and say “wait, what?  He’s doing what?” Freddie Freeman – Ranked Fifth in fWAR For all of the talk, and there was a lot, that the man who lives by Hug Life was the fifth or sixth best option at first base in the National League and not close to being a worthwhile All-Star, Freeman is currently fifth among all players at…

Lineup Optimization: Does It Even Matter?

On July 27th, Fredi Gonzalez “succumbed” to…public pressure? Frank Wren? His wife?  After 61 games with Andrelton Simmons as the leadoff hitter, including the six games before the decision was made, Gonzalez wrote a new name in the leadoff spot – Jason Heyward.  On the face of it, it was a confusing choice for some.  Heyward is 6’5″ and 240 pounds of a hybrid of a gazelle and Ken Griffey Jr., not a 5’10” spark-plug…