I’m bringing some positivity. I actually think the Braves do belong in the playoffs because I am a loyal fan and would like to see my team win the world series. The biggest mistakes made before this year were definitely on the coaching staff. We hurriedly hired Fredi and regrettably fired TP and hired Larry Parrish. For all you TP haters out there, the Braves have only 3 games left and have only scored 635 runs all year. This will be their worst output since 1994 which was shortened. Be careful what you wish for. Even with all this I will still root for my Braves because if they end up with a better record than the Cardinals they DO deserve a playoff spot.
The weird thing about the playoffs is that it gives off a kind of fresh start feeling. And of course the cliche “Anything can happen” idea gives me hope. Don’t laugh but If they make it I would give them a 60 % shot at getting to the NLCS. There is history of clubs struggling in September and clicking in October. Besides all that I selfishly want that high of seeing my team in the playoffs. After 162 games there is no sport where teams earn their playoff spot more than baseball. Making the playoffs is a real accomplishment and you’ll never know when your team will make it again. Who knows, the next time the Braves make the playoffs may be 2028.
We’re fans. Freaking out and being frustrated are what we do best. But if we get in the playoffs, I’ll happily forget September. I think we’re one good win away from completely having a different outlook for October.
The Heyward situation plus the way the bullpen has been handled all year are my main concerns with Fredi. What is his beef with Heyward? Even when his ABs improve he still bats behind Alex Gonzalez and Jack Wilson. I was under the impression that this guy was a meaningful part of our future. I think Fredi is in way over his head. The Braves and Twins both have this model of continuation in management and coaching. For both clubs the model has produced nothing but first round exits from the playoffs if they make it. I guess that’s good. And yes, I realize both those teams won a WS 15-20 years ago.
The game has changed in the last 20 years. The Braves need to do the same.
As a fan I hope we win all 3. I guess that issue needed to be addressed this week? But in the role of a rational thinking human I would bet we miss the playoffs.
I agree with most, however, I do have confidence in Venters & Kimbrel. If we somehow get the miraculous charge to go to playoffs, they could turn some of this around…..I don’t know about going all the way. Fredi has totally mismanged this team. Much more so than I believe Mark Richt has mismanaged UGA. I’d like to see Jim Fregosi, but I don’t think it would happen.
freddi had good teams in florida that he didnt do much with? yeah right. they finished ahead of the braves in both 2009 and 2008. in 2009, they finished second to the phillies. and the team improved its W/L record every single year he was there, each year with terrible pitching staffs.
One can still be a fan and recognize that the Cardinals were 10 1/2 games out on Aug 26. And, it is NOT primarily a pitching/injury problem; if you score 3 or less runs in most of your games, you lose most of your games. It isn’t anti-Braves to recognize that they suck right now but, yes, they could start hitting again any day, week, month, or season. I hope they win 3 but I am only willing to bet a quarter on it. A lot of frustration goes with the realization that not one player out of 25+ has been able to step up. What’s his name, Parrish? should be proud of how he has helped turn a bunch of pretty good hitters into a team that can’t buy a timely hit.
steve, butchering the facts? those are pretty basic numbers. those marlins teams were not all that good, and they won 84 and 87 games the final two full years under fredi gonzalez. including finishing 2nd to the eventual NL champion phillies.
that post wasnt meant to build fredi up, or say that he has done a great job this season with the braves. just saying that he did well with bad teams in florida, while you guys were saying he did badly with good teams. it just isnt true.
both in 2008 and 2009, the marlins pitching gave up nearly as many runs as the offense scored. thats really bad pitching, guys.
and steve, i wrote a long piece about what i think of fredi, but lost it. ill try to sum up… he spent a good chunk of the season trying to figure out this team. in atlanta, we havent had a new manager in a long time, so we dont really know what thats like. he made some good moves and bad moves with the lineup, and alot of strategic mishaps, especially in the early part of the season.
fredi deserves to stay, but parrish doesnt. i never thought pendleton should have lost his job, and im a person who always supported pendleton’s position on the team. the braves were consistently a very good offensive team during his entire time as hitting coach, and this year, it has all dried up.
“I have never pitched against the Phillies, but I know they are a good team,” he said after the Braves lost 3-0 to the Washington Nationals on Sunday. “But I’m going to go as long as I can and keep the ball down. I will try to focus, concentrate and not lose control.”
DAP: I appreciate you trying to sway folk’s opinions but I stand by what I said about it not being “primarily…. pitching” that has lost a 10 1/2 game lead. A few runs here and there and we would also have clinched by now. Look up the word “primarily”; I did not rule out that pitching played a roll. Overall, considering the injuries, the pitching has not been bad. The bullpen for every team loses some games. On the other hand, the hitting has been terrible. The Braves have scored 3 runs or less in 15 games since Aug 26 and may very well do it again 3 more times. And, Fredi and most of his staff suck; you are welcome to your opinion. I’ll keep mine.
When Fredi was fired in Florida, his bench coach and hitting coach were also fired with him. Maybe, just maybe, Fredi has trouble hiring a competent staff, managing the bench, the pitching staff and hitting. Other than that, he might grow into his postion.
OK, two games left, one game lead in the WC. I’ve got a weird feeling we’re going to win today, sort of the same feeling I had when DLowe started game 4 of the 2004 ALCS. Umm, so have we got Ortiz in the lineup?
I desparately want the Braves to get in because of a win TONIGHT. This is the last moment of the season to take back some of the control and show they have something left. I’m not interested in getting in solely because of beating the collection of middle relievers on Wednesday.
Of course, the somewhat ridiculous thing about that last paragraph is that I don’t think they have a win left in them. Losing that lead last night + a clearly hobbled Chipper feels like the final nail. And I don’t think the Cards lose the final two in Houston.
Watched Moneyball last night. Watching a movie about baseball while your team plays such an important game is not recommended. The last thing I want is to have a tie breaker in St. Louis. That would be worse than embarrassing. Something is broken with this team. Post season hope meter is still at a zero but I still will watch. Every pitch. And get rip roaring mad when they lose.
And Stevie (@84) that is a bold assumption that we could beat a Pu-Pu platter of Phillies pitchers if it came down to that. I fear that our Poo-Poo platter of a lineup would struggle in A League of Their Own. Double Entendre INTENDED! ZING!
Darth Vader: “Luke, I am your father.” I’ll be as surprised as Luke was if we clinch tonight. But who knows, Luke, I mean Lowe might have one left in him. After all, he was seen backing up to collect his last check and he is feeling guilty about making $1.67 mil per win; one more win will cut it to $1.5 mil per win which is much more reasonable.
I must say what I have said all season. Wren made a terrible decsion on the long contract to Lowe. He should have been traded early this year even if the Braves had to eat most of the contract. He is a cancer.
Of course, it doesn’t really matter since the Braves haven’t hit for weeks.
What an absolute nightmare of an ending to a promising season. Can’t believe we added Freeman, Bourn, and Uggla to last year’s good team, put three rookies in running for ROY, and ended with this trash. A real lead off man, a real clean up hitter, and a real closer, three huge missing pieces from the Braves of late. And this is how it ends. No words. Well, a few words (see above), but they don’t really cover it.
If any Braves fans are looking to fill their offseason with something besides football and EPL(kudos to those who know what this is), then I strongly recommend Sons of Anarchy. Just got started on it over the Summer. I’ve almost caught up. It’s really good.
It’s times like these that I’m glad the Braves aren’t nationally popular. All ESPN is talking about is the Boston collapse. They lost a 9 game lead starting on September 2. ESPN even went so far as to make a song about their failure.
Braves kept hoping Lowe could pitch a good game or two so they can get something for him. Earlier in the year they could have traded him if they would have eaten about a third to half of next year’s contract. Now, Braves will eat it all as he should never pitch for the Braves again. Take the hit, Release him TODAY and a year from now they’ll have $15 mil to work with. Also, that will make him the scapegoat for Fredi. But how does Lowe take the blame for the pathetic hitting?
139 – The day the story came out, Smoltzy just happened to be live on MLBN, they confronted him and John said something to the effect that: Ah, you know, that’s just Leo having some fun — I’ve never juiced a ball.
I don’t think God listens to prayers about sports. So, guess we just cross our fingers. Maybe we have 1 or 2 games left. Hudson can be good at times and McCann squinted pretty good last night so, maybe he will be joined by others in seeing the ball. Even with a Braves win and a Cardinal loss, we have now been made keenly aware of some serious flaws with this team’s players/management. Plenty to keep everyone busy in the off-season.
174, couldn’t agree less. call was close in the first place and could have gone either way (Umps don’t have slow-mo) but he then came off the bag. Can’t be a homer on every call. But, I will say that Bourn did show up tonight even if it was only for one of the few times this month.
I do wish the “young un’s” could have been around JJ (though I understand they wouldn’t have been called up had he been able to pitch) and see you don’t have to throw your hardest to get outs… Let up a little, get a little more movement on the ball, pitch a bit more to contact and go longer in games…
It was a domino effect. The young starters pitched well, but came out of games earlier, which taxed the bullpen more, which caused them to not pitch as well, which led to exposing our lack of offense, which caused us to lose games we should have won, which will probably cause the Braves to miss the playoffs…
18th game since Aug 16 with 3 runs or less. Say goodbye to many of these players. And, hopefully some of the coaches. Need some guys with heart. The list is way too long of players that quit in August.
Tough season, McCann was supposed to be Chipper’s replacement as the leader; he showed nothing in the second half. I hope it was injuries. Prado, Heyward, Gonzales failed to meet minimum goals. The pinch hitting was terrible. Braves will have to find some hitters by trading pitching and my guess is that Freeman is the only untouchable on the team besides Chipper who wouldn’t go anywhere. NO matter how good your pitching staff is, got to score some runs. But, Wren, please start by giving Lowe away or resign or do both.
1. Venters and Kimbrel dominate but fall apart due to overwork
2. Uggla had terrible 1st half, excellent start of 2nd half and mediocre last month a and a half
3. McCann had excellent 1st half, but terrible terrible 2nd half
4. Heyward completely surprises with horrible season.
5. Prado has a less than mediocre season
6. Lowe sucked and McLouth continued to suck
7. Proctor- need I say more
8. Gonzalez has a great year with the glove but completely lost at plate and just when he heats up he gets hurt.
9.Linebrink started off okay but later looked like Proctor
10. Fred Gonzalez makes stupid decisions and there are so many.
11. Larry Parrish obviously can’t reach hitters.
12. JJ and Tommy are MIA in the 2nd half
the quotes from Fredi are just . . . . there aren’t words. He took ZERO accountability for how things ended up. Disgusting. I know that everyone worked their butts off, and left it on the field, blah blah blah. BUT not even one word of accountability. I feel bad for everyone on the team except for him. So angry right now.
At least the Red Sox pooped the bed as well. There isn’t a whole lot of baseball talk going on right now. The train in was as quiet as I have seen it in a long time.
Right now, I am not looking forward to next season. I know in time that I will and all that, but I can’t imagine another day with F-Gone (if only) at the helm.
If you watched the postgame comments it was even worse. He had such a too bad, tough luck tone. And his we’ll get ‘em next year was perhaps the weakest and most unconvincing we’ll get ‘em next year I have ever heard. You finished the season 3-9 against your division. Something tells me the teams we play the most know how easily we’ll roll over if they just play hard. The Phillies clinched weeks ago, yet they always make the pitcher work every at bat of every game. They are better than the Braves and they play much harder as a team. As do the other 3 teams that beat us out for the postseason. The Braves showed no heart this last month, and I think it all starts with the coaching staff. I have no doubt that this coaching staff is back next year, and we will see similar results.
I’m actually ok with last night’s loss…don’t hate me. We NEVER would have won tonight’s game with a taxed bullpen and dejected offense after a long game and a late flight. I’d rather we just limped away.
We added so many good pieces in the offseason, too. Meanwhile, Joe Maddon’s team is so depleted that people predict they take major steps back in 2011. Instead, they beat out a team with twice their payroll and make the postseason. They beat out the Red Sox after the Sox acquired the Rays 2nd best hitter in the offseason. That would be like us beating out the Phillies after they acquired Brian McCann or Chipper. A good manager can definitely have a huge effect on a group of players. Joe Maddon might be just a tad smarter than old F-Gone, though.
Associated Press:”The Braves were 10 1/2 games of St. Louis before play August 26. They were still up by 8 1/2 games on the morning of Sept. 6. Instead of popping champagne for a second straight trip to the playoffs, they became the FIRST TEAM IN MAJOR-LEAGUE HISTORY TO SQUANDER A LEAD OF AT LEAST EIGHT GAMES FOR A PLAYOFF SPOT IN SEPTEMBER.” The caps were mine.
SO, They are first at something. I think they are also first at having the worst managing/coaching staff. So, we win twice!
“It was one more reminder of why the Cards are still alive and the Braves are done. Some folks look at the bright glare of a playoff hunt as if it were a scalding heat lamp (see: Atlanta Braves). Others bask in the warmth of the intense pressure and act as though it’s some soothing morning sun. That would be the Cardinals.” – Bryan Burwell, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Atlanta ranked 26th in the major leagues in batting average (.243) and on-base percentage (.308), after finishing fourth in the majors in OBP (.339) in 2010 under former hitting coach Terry Pendleton, who now serves as first-base coach and infield instructor.
The Braves hit .205 with 31 runs while going 3-9 in their last 12 games, and had a .195 average with runners in scoring position for the month of September.
“I’m sure that L.P. [Parrish] will sit back and evaluate some things, maybe do some things different, like we all will,” Gonzalez said.
I hope the Cardinals enjoy this moment because this time next week the Phillies would have swept them. The Phillies are definitely going to the world series. Their at bats were amazing and their pitchers were hitting the corners at will in extras.
443 – Ham, I love the tag F-Gone! Yep, he’ll serve his entire contract with the Braves and maybe even a little more.
My problem with Fredi wasn’t so much that he wasted the bullpen this season. With so many close games, I can forgive (some of) that. But there were times when he ran Jonny out there when he didn’t need to.
My biggest problem with him is that he’s not all a tactical and strategic manager. Doesn’t play the matchups well, sits players who are hot, doesn’t know when to hit and run, picks the wrong time to squeeze (safety or suicide), and his post game comments leave one to wonder whether the man was even near the ballpark!
He needs to go. firefredi.com, damnit!!!
I said that last years team was better and I really mean that from a team standpoint (not on paper) that the 2010 Braves were a character team and found way to win game instead of losing them. Not sure what happened with this year’s team but something tells me that they either don’t like to play for Fredi or that something is wrong in the clubhouse. I can sure see why the 2010 Braves played their hearts out for Bobby and perhaps that might be the reason the team just didn’t look like they went all out in every game down the stretch. Last night’s game with their backs against the wall they did play hard — too little too late and we should have never been in the position. Fredi needs to learn how to inspire and/or motivate his players. He’s terrible and we are stuck with him.
This was a hard season but it really irks me that Buster Onley is putting rumors out there that Heyward might be traded. If the Braves trade Heyward at 22 years old and after 2 seasons, I’d lose it. I can imagine it now. We trade him and next year he’s in MVP talks.
It’s been mentioned several times over the last few months, but, to me the key to success starts with new ownership. All Liberty Media wants is for the Braves to send the parent company a certain amount of profit every year. A new owner that cares about winning will put an end to this mediocrity crap. Of course, there could be a problem finding anyone who wants the team.
New owners will mean that someone as ignorant as Fredi, will be gone. By the way what happened to Schuerholz? Does he not care anymore? Maybe his concern is collecting his paycheck and Liberty Media bonus.
My guess is, as I said earlier today, that EVERYONE except Freeman will be open for discussion and trade (that would include McCann, though not likely, and only if enough was offered). This is the MLB and the Braves don’t have a competitive budget nor can they afford to keep all the youthful talent. They want youth and cheap journeyman players for the bench. Chipper is likely their last lifer.
Heyward needs winter ball or something to show Braves he can hit.
@450 I disagree. McCann, Bourn, Kimbrel, Venters, Heyward, Uggla, Tehran are also untouchables. It just wouldn’t make sense to move these guys if you are looking to compete next year. I know we fell flat on our face but I’ve been hearing too much language about blowing the team up. Usually that talk is for veteran teams. We have one of the top 5 talented rosters in Baseball with most of our young players 3 or 4 years away from free agency. The problem is Fredi and Parrish. Yeah the Braves are on a budget but that’s even more reason to keep their cost controlled players. 30 million from Chipper and Lowe come off the books after next year. That money will be reinvested. I don’t see how they keep Bourn though.
Do yourself a favor. Stop paying attention to what comes out of Fredi’s mouth in the press…
It does not make one tenth of one games difference in the standings. It most likely doesn’t reflect anything about what he is really feeling. It is “press talk”, nothing more. Judging Fredi by that crap is useless.
The young players will get better. The main things that need to improve, imo, are the starters going longer in games, and the hitters putting together better ABs. The Phillies just put on a clinic these last 3 games on how to make a pitcher work. It seemed like they got a ton of 2 strike hits and seemingly worked the pitcher every AB. They look like they have a team approach when it comes to hitting, which goes against LP’s style of coaching.
“putting this season” directly on Fredi is like blaming a marksman for bad shooting when he has a really good gun but has been provided sub-standard, inconsistent ammo.
If you ascribe to the “win a 1/3, lose a 1/3, what counts is what you do with the other third” theory, we went 35-19 in those games, mostly due to strong starting pitching and a strong back end of the bullpen. It obscured our lack luster offense (which was there all year).
Until our starting pitching got hurt, then the replacements pitched well, but they had shorter outings, taxing our bullpen and exposing our poorly performing offense.
Wren didn’t do enough to put a capable major league offense on the field – the fact that Nate McLouth was our starting center fielder for most of that time is unforgivable. When he did bat well, he was batting ninth.
Lowe was an anchor much of the second half as well as Heyward. Playing the two of them in the second half was ludicrous. Both of them should have been sent to the minors till they got straightened out.
Prado wasn’t himself after the injury. Is this really going to be our starting left fielder for the future?
JJ was a first half bright spot, as was Freddie after a few weeks. Huddy did well pretty much all year.
Our young pitchers could learn from JJ. He went from trying to strike everyone out to pitching a bit more to contact. Which resulted in fewer pitches per inning and going longer into games. The 5 2/3 inning starts killed out bullpen.
My Offseason Questions:
How do you move Derek Lowe? Will the Braves eat most of that salary to clear a spot in the rotation for one of the young guys or Medlen?
How do you improve the durability of the pitching staff?
How do you improve the situational hitting?
Will they offer Bourn an extension?
Will they upgrade at SS?
Will they add another arm to the bullpen or just give Martinez, Vizcaino, and Medlen bigger roles?
The other positions seem pretty set, unless they move Heyward, which seems about as likely as firing Fredi.
I have been reminding myself all day that this is a very young, inexperienced team. They need time. It was also Fredi’s first year with this group. Hopefully he now has a better understanding of what he has and how to best use it.
Yes the players didn’t perform well, but Fredi made many mistakes that I KNOW affected the outcome of games. He is the leader so he should be blamed. It is what it is. I wonder if Parrish even stressed putting together good at bats instead of taking strike 1 fastball down the middle then swinging at a ball in the dirt.
Guess which quote the following team is about “a perception held by some within the organization that this team — despite four wildly successful months — operated in a vacuum of clubhouse leadership. This, in turn, cultivated a climate of a lack of accountability, over which the manager presided with a curious sense of detachment,”
I’ll give you a clue: Rumors are that this team may announce today that they are parting ways with their manager.
I’ll give you another clue: don’t get your hopes up, Braves fans.
470 – Well, that’s why you cannot believe ANYTHING Fredi says. How many times during the season did he say he was going to do something in the pre-game, then do the complete opposite. I hope they can Roger McDowell as well, He doesn’t seem to know when it’s time to visit the mound — especially if your a rookie pitcher with just a handful of games under your belt.
I look for more changes but the one change we all want will not happen.
Glad to hear that D-Lowe will either be traded or to the ‘pen. He’s going to the ‘pen, he’s done, and I think this is the Braves way of saying, ok, you wanna stay (and I know he’s under contract through next year), go to the ‘pen.
It’s a kind of KK thing. Nobody wants him and he’s done. It’s sure going to bust his ego. He’ll probably start drinking and drag racing on P’Tree Street again. Maybe he doesn’t get off this time.
I want Leo back but I doubt it will happen. The thing that bothers me about McDowell is that he’s a jerk and that whole SF thing. I don’t know whether or not Leo might have roughed up any feathers with his recent comments but I always liked him as a fan.
I guess Gonzo is gone since Wren mentioned SS, OF, and utility infielder as the primary needs for an upgrade. It will be interesting to see what happens with Heyward and Prado. I wonder if Wren is going to get someone to come off the bench or someone to challenge for a starting spot. Speaking of OF, I hope we lock down Michael Bourn like Wren did with Uggla last offseason. We all know how hard it is to find a leadoff man and CF.
Jo-Bu, I don’t think we’ll see Leo again. I thought it was always telling that the Big 3 (Maddux, Glav, Smoltz) never really came talked him up much when he left. I’ve always there was more to the Leo story then we knew. And listening to him on the radio her in ATL, he gets more unlikeable by the day.
Blue Jays GM: It’s Alex, how ya doin’, buddy?
Wren: Last week was pretty tough.
Blue Jays GM: Yeah, I saw that. Hey, I have something shiny here.
Blue Jays GM: Just give me that disappointing guy. What’s his name-Howard or something?
Blue Jays GM: Right. That guy.
If we rank the disappointments in Braves history, 1-10. This is probably somewhere around 3 or 4, I suppose. It sucks, but there have been bigger sucks. No? There haven’t been bigger chokes in my memory…but for example losing a WS to the Twins because we lose a ball in the frikking dome ceiling sucks worse than this, no? Can any body help properly frame the suckiness? I am late to my therapist…