March 02, 2014

Show #252: Catching Up With Kris Medlen

The infield fly.  The need for an ace.  The extensions.  And his great work with the Rally Foundation.



45 Responses to “Show #252: Catching Up With Kris Medlen”

  1. 1
    Mark in Memphis Says:

    From Braves article: (2nd sentence is paramount, I think…)

    He’s generating walks (three in four games) and is cutting down on his strikeouts (two) and has four RBI. Uggla said he’s not going to try and hit home runs, instead focusing on being a more complete hitter, like when he was a Marlin and averaging 34 doubles with 30.8 home runs (those two-baggers had dropped to 20.3 per year with the Braves). The extra-base hits have yet to come in the Grapefruit League, but that Uggla is sticking with his gameplan thus far is as good a sign as anyone could have hoped for.

  2. 2
    Steve Says:

    Totally agree. Of all the empty ST platitudes you hear, Uggla saying he won’t try to hit so many HRs is probably the most positive he could have picked.

    The flip side to that is that power was the one thing he really brought to the table. Cutting down on SOs and increasing his OBA better be part of the package.

  3. 3
    Curt Says:

    MIM – thanks for sharing that article on Medlen. I think I have been both the strongest proponent of Medlen’s, and probably of the need for the Braves to get an ace. I love Medlen. I just wonder if he can win us a game one against some power pitcher.

  4. 4
    Leah Says:

    Great job Curt. Meds is definitely a favorite. If you had bitched it I woulda been pissed. :)

  5. 5
    Leah Says:

    Dang iiiiiit! I meant botched! So sorry! Season hasn’t even started and I’m embarrassing myself.

  6. 6
    Curt Says:

    Leah – potty mouth.

    I’m sure I will be bitching about something soon enough. Just you wait.

  7. 7
    DAP Says:

    Whew! Got through the Curt solo show. Not NEARLY as bad as i feared! ;- )

    Just messin curt, great job as usual. Medlen is an awesome guy, it was cool to hear from him.

  8. 8
    Steve Says:

    OK – baseball movie recommendation. It’s on Netflix streaming: Ballplayer Pelotero. Must watch. Documentary about two top prospects approaching signing day in the Dominican Republic. One of them was in the news recently, but I won’t give that away. Seriously, stop what you’re doing right now and watch it.

  9. 9
    Walker Says:

    Saw the documentary and it was great. Looks like Twins fans have alot to look forward to between Sano and Buxton.

  10. 10
    Leah Says:

    How nervous are we about Medlin’s “forarm strain”

  11. 11
    Steve Says:

    @10 – Very nervous. Forearm strain is obviously best case, but grabbing his surgically repaired elbow like that was very scary looking. Won’t be convinced until the MRI results come back.

  12. 12
    David Says:

    I agree — really nervous about Medlen’s forearm strain. I think that what makes it worse is that Fredi G is talking about how optimistic he is that this isn’t gonna be a major issue. Y’all, if there’s anything I’ve learned about Fredi G, it’s that whenever he says an injury won’t be that bad and they’re expecting good news, the injury is always bad and the news is never good. Ugh.

  13. 13
    Leah Says:

    Medlin’s expression scared me most. Like “not again.”

  14. 14
    Steve Says:

    Forearm strains are so rarely JUST forearm strains. The more I ponder it, the more I believe he’s gone for the year.

    Listen to DOB on Buster Olney’s podcast this morning ( – it starts at the 3 minute mark and is pretty quick). He lays it out pretty clearly. There’s not much on the market for quick fixes which means the Braves lean on their internal depth. And, while there’s depth, it’s not a bunch of #1 starter kind of depth like the Nats have, for example. It’s 4 and 5 depth.

  15. 15
    Mark in Memphis Says:

    Curt interviews him… now he’s hurt…

    PLEASE don’t interview any more current players, unless they are from other teams… :)

  16. 16
    Walker Says:

    I just cant believe Medlen might be gone for the year.

  17. 17
    Curt Says:

    The ABT curse strikes again.

    Good news is the Braves traded for Zach Stewart from the White Sox. You know. Zach Stewart.

  18. 18
    tcc Says:

    Curt, any chance of an interview with Bryce Harper???

  19. 19
    Steve Says:

    Perhaps a round table with the Nats starting rotation?

  20. 20
    Danny Says:

    I second that Steve!

  21. 21
    Anne Says:

    Oh, Ron Gant. Yesterday it was Kris Med uh lun, today it’s Kris Medlens. Get it together – of all the things you should be able to pronounce, it’s a fellow baseball player’s name. A guy you probably know pretty well. I need to change my morning TV channel.

  22. 22
    Curt Says:

    Yes. Yes you do.

  23. 23
    Steve Says:

    This Medlen news is horrendous. There is no way he pitches this year. I’m convinced. And I really hope they don’t spend the money (and draft pick) on Ervin Santana. Too much for a guy coming off a career year.

  24. 24
    Curt Says:

    Steve, the only counter I would have is that this would be a one year deal with the guy and hopefully he would be locked in to get the big cash in 2015.

    Secondarily, we have the pick from the McCann deal. I know we have 2 picks now, but should we lose it, the McCann pick is only 3 spots behind the one we have, so it wouldn’t be a total loss.

    But, obviously, terrible news seems looming for Medlen and I hate it.

  25. 25
    Shaun Says:

    Well, at least the Braves have some depth that is near major league ready. The only thing is a lot of those guys seem to have limited upside, probably all back-end starters, mid-rotation at best. But that’s better than having to rely on guys like Mike Redman, Buddy Carlyle, Chuck James, and those types.

  26. 26
    Steve Says:

    Shaun – funny you mention those names. When I saw the Medlen announcement this morning, I thought about how bad it was during the 2008 season. Here are starting pitchers from that year and the number of starts they made:

    JJ – 31
    Campillo – 25
    Hudson – 22
    Jo Jo – 22
    Charlie Morton – 15
    Hampton and Glavine – 13 each

    At least it’s not that ugly…

  27. 27
    George Says:

    No more interviews for you, Curt. Well, maybe Stassburg. Juuuuust kiddin’

  28. 28
    Will Says:

    No bueno. Any thoughts as to why so many braves seem to go down with tj related problems? Are we above average hit by this? I know there was debate about over use of our mid relief but starters? Just part of the game? Like botox in Hollywood?

  29. 29
    will Says:

    fluke or real?

    “Uggla went 2-for-3 to raise his spring average to .318 (7-for-22) with two homers, seven RBIs, six walks, eight strikeouts and a .448 on-base percentage and .591 slugging percentage.”

    awesome if no fluke

  30. 30
    David Says:

    Braves sign Santana for $14.1 million.

    What I don’t like: big money, injury risk due to history, and what this likely means for Medlen’s status.

    What I do like: proven starter, he’ll be pitching in a friendlier division (and league), and he’s got plenty of reasons to pitch his way into a bigger payday next year.

    And before we start saying, “so the Braves had $14.1 M sitting around this whole time?!?!”, I’m guessing that this is a situation where the front office went to Liberty Media and asked for some more help.

  31. 31
    Shaun Says:

    David, the Braves could be the Yankees, if Liberty Media wanted them to be. The budget constraints are self-imposed to allow Liberty to make more money. And they can get away with it because the Braves don’t draw all that many fans, relative to other teams, and they have a sub par local TV deal. So they do have $14.1 million sitting around.

  32. 32
    Shaun Says:

    Of course, there is some good that comes out of Liberty imposing a limited budget on the Braves. Instead of signing a lot of older stars and them getting older together, and contending cyclically that way, they are encouraged to develop their own players and they can sign them long-term when it’s worth doing so, like they just did.

  33. 33
    Curt Says:

    Shaun – how dare you disparage Buddy Carlyle.

    And George, don’t deny the world my gift. The curse is real.

  34. 34
    Anne Says:

    @23 speaking of curses…you jinxed it, Steve. …and the guy has a twitter account and loves him some ALL CAPS & exclamation points

  35. 35
    Steve Says:

    @34 – FWIW, I’m much more in favor of the move then I was a few days ago. It had to be done. The season was slipping away before it started with Medlen gone and Beachy a question mark. The only real, tangible downside (I’m removing the lost draft pick from this b/c that’s a crap shoot to some degree, that low in the first round) is that the team likely has no money now at the trade deadline. But, the problem was today, not in July.

  36. 36
    Shaun Says:

    Steve @35, yes, and it’s easy to argue that it’s better to get a Santana now, when you have him for the full season, than to wait until July to fix a problem, when you only have that player for 2-3 months. If it is an overpay, better to overpay for a guy that should contribute something for the whole season than to overpay for 2-3 months of value.

  37. 37
    Mark in Memphis Says:

    Di-di-dum-dum-dum… another one bites the dust…

    Beachy to possibly need 2nd Tommy John…

    At least, he should have a “workout buddy” in Meds…

    IF they both need it…

    Still an IF, so we have some hope.

    Upside to both needing it, our rookies and 2nd year pitchers will get a lot more experience and we can see a little more of what we have and they should be a bit more ready for post season (hopefully)… if not this year, then next…

  38. 38
    Curt Says:

  39. 39
    will Says:

    Curt – wow. Atlanta is #1 on the list (see second chart Tommy John Surgeries by Team)

  40. 40
    will Says:

    @28 and @ 38 – Can I ask other broad questions and have ABT find the answers for me?

  41. 41
    will Says:

    Open the pod bay doors, Curt.

  42. 42
    will Says:

    @ 38 seriously I don’t know how you can read that and not indict the braves as serial abusers of their pitching staff

  43. 43
    Curt Says:

    Yeah, Will, I don’t know exactly what that stat means. I know the Braves draft tons of pitchers, so does that have something to do with it? Or are they just terrible with their pitchers. I certainly think Bobby and Fredi are guilty of riding guys, but is it egregious? No idea.

  44. 44
    jo-bu Says:

    I’ve heard that a lot of sports medicine folks tend to agree that pitchers who start having elbow issues early in their pro career attribute it to poor mechanics and undiciplined/unhealthy work habbits that they developed earlier from their teenage years. It’s not something that develops over night.

  45. 45
    Shaun Says:

    It seems like the Braves worry more about skills and results than mechanics. That might be why they find hidden gems and also why their pitchers have had so many Tommy John surgeries.

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