Braves Journal, The House That Mac Built

Scarred, but smarter.

30 Apr

Jose Fernandez 9

Facing Jose Fernandez is not our strong suit, apparently.

70 Responses to “Jose Fernandez 9”

  1. 1
    Johnny Says:

    Perfectly recapped.

    Ububba – had to look up the reference to Old Scratch. Its very very accurate.

    So how much longer does Uggla get? At least BJ’s playing defense and drawing walks.

  2. 2
    Adam R Says:

    La Stella is hitting a small-sample-size .310/.370/.333. As I posted the other day, that’s just two extra-base hits on the year so far — both doubles — and he is now 25 years old.

    Will major league pitchers knock the bat right out of his hands? Can he maximize his true strength, controlling the strike zone, without pitchers fearing his ability to drive the ball?

    Given that La Stella has a reputation as a not-so-good defender, Uggla’s leash is probably a bit longer, for now.

  3. 3
    Dusty Says:

    TLS in his minor league career is hitting .326/.408/.481 in 1098 PAs so I’m not really worried about the lack of power so far this year.

    He has hit .300+ in every level he’s played and shown a very good eye, I think he’s going to be a tough out in the majors whenever given the chance.

    In other news, we get to see Kershaw in his final rehab start in Chattanooga tonight so that should be neat.

  4. 4
    spike Says:

    In case anyone missed it, Jameis Wilson was suspended from the FSU baseball team for walking out of Publix with some crab legs. Hilarious jpgs abound on the net today.

  5. 5
    Johnny Says:

    Pretty interesting.

    @2 Hey, I get it. We are winning so there is less pressure to make a change. But if Uggla doesn’t get it together in the next two weeks then what? La Stella has options, why not give him a chance?

  6. 6
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    It appears that far more people are interested in Jameis Winston’s alleged crab leg shoplifting than his other alleged crime.

  7. 7
    spike Says:

    The crab legs knew his future earnings potential and set him up, duh. But apparently the citation has already been dropped – I hear no one even bothered to interview the crab.

  8. 8
    Adam R Says:

    Having lived in Tallahassee for a time, I will say that that particular Publix featured:
    – surprisingly good Chinese food
    – an astoundingly high ratio of beautiful female shoppers to the general population

    Never got crab legs from there, though.

    La Stella’s ISO by year in the minors:
    2011 – .215
    2012 – .167
    2013 – .135
    2014 so far = .022

    For being a little old for each level, for a prospect, that’s not a super-encouraging progression. An average ISO is something like .140 or .150. Who knows, maybe he’s still better than Uggla, but it’s gotta be a concern.

  9. 9
    Johnny Says:

    Good thing he was in Florida. Here in Ohio crab legs would be just below grand larceny. ‘There was also crawfish and butter involved.’

    Dude must like crustaceans. Or were the crawfish fellow perpetrators?

  10. 10
    DWonder Says:

    Does Wren give any thought to making a real attempt at signing Big Erv to an extension?

  11. 11
    Anon21 Says:

    La Stella is 25, so I’m not super clear on what they’re waiting for, here. He’s not gonna get better, and neither is Uggla. Bounce Dan to the bench, weep over the big pile of money you’re burning, and put the best team on the field.

  12. 12
    ububba Says:

    Kicked him off the baseball team, huh? How ’bout that? Just the baseball team…

  13. 13
    coop Says:

    If free shoes, why not free shellfish?

  14. 14
    'Rissa Says:

    One day, the Braves are going to score a run in a game Alex Wood starts. I think it has actually happened before, but it’s been so long that I can’t be sure.

  15. 15
    blazon Says:

    Bat on a Hot Tin Roof…


  16. 16
    spike Says:

    @10, every day without a doubt. Big Erv, not so much at the moment.

  17. 17
    ububba Says:

    I love the idea that, for the 2014 season, Ervin Santana might have the most motivation that he’ll ever possess in his professional life.

  18. 18
    Adam R Says:

    Exactly. Carry us to the promised land, Erv.

  19. 19
    Nick Says:


    What if Uggla is better than La Stella, though? Do you know he’s not? Because I think that’s the question.


    Yeah, really dropped the hammer on that one, didn’t they?

  20. 20
    jjschiller Says:

    So they Braves have to activate Floyd by Sunday, and they are saying Wood is NOT going to the pen.

    So.. Floyd to the pen?

  21. 21
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    @19, here’s the thing: based on the totality of their performance from 2013-2014, I think that the chances are greater that Tommy La Stella is above replacement level than that Dan Uggla is above replacement level.

    Obviously, we don’t know how good or bad La Stella will be, and if he’s terrible, then he can be replaced by Pena and Pastornicky and we won’t be any worse off.

    We know exactly how bad Uggla is, and he is so bad that the cost of replacing his incredibly crappy performance should be extraordinarily low. We gave him a month of the regular season to demonstrate that he was capable of not being terrible. He was unable to do so. It’s time to move on.

  22. 22
    Adam R Says:

    Aside from Alex Wood’s obvious true greatness, if the Braves want to take it slow with a TJ returnee, given the recent track record, it’s hard to argue against that.

  23. 23
    jjschiller Says:

    @21 – The other thing La Stella has going for him is his handedness. For some reason Uggla’s feelings about things seem to matter to the Braves, so with a lefty, you can ease him in, and ease Uggla out, instead of plugging him in and committing to him and straight up benching Uggla.

    But anyway, count me among those who don’t care about La Stella’s recent power outage. The lineup has power, it could use contact. It could also use walks. Oh, and a lefty, it could use that too.

  24. 24
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    One run in 25 innings. Fan-bloody-tastic. We’re seeing some great pitchers, but this is ridiculous.

  25. 25
    'Rissa Says:

    Wasting a leadoff double is really not the best way to start a game.

  26. 26
    jjschiller Says:

    The best way to get these guys out is to put a man on second. They start climbing over each other to get up there and make an out.

  27. 27
    RJ in KS Says:

    That was a quick inning. I didn’t even make it through my steak.

  28. 28
    Johnny Says:

    If all LaStella does is get on base he is better than Uggla.

  29. 29
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    Regression ain’t just a third baseman this series.

  30. 30
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Apparently, Aaron Harang is not the best pitcher in baseball.

  31. 31
    Nick Says:

    Well, this series isn’t going well.

  32. 32
    Putter Says:

    We don’t need regression from everyone on the staff at once

  33. 33
    'Rissa Says:

    I guess last night was not a mirage. We’re picking up right where we left off. What did these guys do on the off day?

  34. 34
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    Harang’s ERA has more than doubled this inning, and his WHIP has increased by 14.7 percent.

  35. 35
    spike Says:

    Thanks, Ozuna.

  36. 36
    ububba Says:

    Gotta go get ’em, Braves…

  37. 37
    Grst Says:

    Have we run out of fairy dust?

  38. 38
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    If this offense was merely average, the return to mortality on the mound wouldn’t be too damaging.

  39. 39
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Considering that we really just needed enough fairy dust to get through April, and bring back Minor and Floyd, I think that the fairy dust lasted exactly as long as it needed to.

  40. 40
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    Leadoff double, move him over, drive him in. What a novel concept.

  41. 41
    RJ in KS Says:

    @39 After the devastation to the rotation during “Game of Elbows: Spring Training” being 17-8, I think Alex’s assessment is dead on. I would have been happy with a .500 mark in April, yet the Braves are still two games up (heading into tonight) over the Mets of all teams.

    I’m happy.

  42. 42
    TAD Says:

    Well our pitching coming back down to earth … but our offense continues to struggle .. BJ Upton is in more 0-2 counts than any player I have ever seen … why not let Pena, Schaffer, Doumit play against a pitcher who is not all world … not fair to play them against fernandez when thye have had at bats ..

  43. 43
    DWonder Says:

    Wasn’t the plan all along to hope Harang’s smoke & mirrors act lasted until Floyd was ready and then stick Harang in the pen?

  44. 44
    Putter Says:

    I wish the Braves offense was as good as the Marlins

    Atta boy Fredi… No point in using the bullpen until the game is completely out of reach

  45. 45
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Remember, the Marlins are PURE EVIL.

  46. 46
    iceberg584 Says:

    This is just a manifestation of the “all starting pitching logjams work themselves out” axiom.

  47. 47
    Adam R Says:

    So now we get to see how many Harang starts it’s going to take for Fredi to figure it out.

  48. 48
    Nick Says:


    I mean…he gets at least one more bad start before it’s acceptable for you to give up on him, let alone Fredi.

    Also, Hale’s up in the bullpen. That answers the question about who’s going down for Minor, at least.

  49. 49
    'Rissa Says:

    @48—No, it sounds like Hale will stay in the bullpen when Minor comes back. Pickles will probably go down.

  50. 50
    Nick Says:


    That’s what I meant. I should’ve worded it “who leaves the rotation for Minor.”

  51. 51
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    I wish it was Varvaro instead of Pickles, but I think Anthony’s out of options.

  52. 52
    'Rissa Says:

    Harang raised his ERA by nearly 2 runs tonight. That’s a little bit incredible for someone who pitched 4 2/3 innings a month into the season.

    Coming off of a 9-0 loss, I thought there was nowhere to go but up, but we’ve managed to match last night’s horrifics in five innings today.

  53. 53
    Our New Insect Overlords Says:

    Challenge when up 9-0? Dick move, but given that it’s the Marlins, totally in their wheelhouse, whose well-deserved reputation for assholery dates back to preventing a team from moving to Tampa Bay because they believed a market four and a half hours away that hated all things Miami was in their “territory.”

  54. 54
    'Rissa Says:

    Seriously, guys, you’re up 9-0. Was challenging that call really necessary?

  55. 55
    kc Says:

    Will Fredi be smart enough to push Harang to the bullpen in favor of Floyd? None of us expects the Harang magic would last and let’s end it before it gets too ugly.

  56. 56
    TAD Says:

    wow our offense stinks .. bad … you gotta expect a couple starts to go haywire .. especially when a team is hot at home like the Markins .. but our guys to just lay down without a fight .. awful .. come on show some fight guys .. dang !!

  57. 57
    Nick Says:


    Yes, one bad start outweighs a month’s worth of good ones and makes pushing Harang to the bullpen for a pitcher that hasn’t pitched in a year a good idea…

  58. 58
    Rusty S. Says:

    @41 – Classic.

  59. 59
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Good for Hale. Nice job helping his cause on his first appearance since being demoted to the pen.

  60. 60
    ryan c Says:

    Challenging anytime you think the call is wrong isn’t a dick move and that’s just ridiculous. This isn’t t-ball.

  61. 61
    ryan c Says:

    Just announced that Gavin Floyd will be activated Sunday.

  62. 62
    Adam R Says:

    @48, If Floyd and Minor are both ready to outperform what you’d expect Harang to do next time out, given his performance over the past couple years, Harang should take a seat.

    That might not be the case. But regardless, my concern is that Harang will get more than one bad start before getting demoted.

  63. 63
    Nick Says:

    He will. He’ll get at least two.

    EDIT: And part of my point is that we shouldn’t be expecting Gavin Floyd to do anything until he proves he can. He hasn’t pitched in a year. Aaron Harang has at least proven he’s capable of putting four good starts together. That trumps Floyd’s nothing so far. And it will take more than one bad start for it to stop trumping it.

  64. 64
    TAD Says:

    why all the talk about pitching ??? .. our problem is not pitching …… we got a bunch who swing for the fences all night .. and Freddie he looks so bored .. him dropping balls is uncharacteristic … somebody needs to be a leader and show some grit

  65. 65
    Adam R Says:

    Heyward doing his best to give us a little positive regression.

  66. 66
    csg Says:

    Say a prayer for my father tonight if you don’t mind. Quad bypass scheduled for 830 am

  67. 67
    'Rissa Says:

    Wow, a Quilvio Veras mention. That’s going back a year or two. He was involved in one of the funniest plays I’ve ever seen. The first baseman was charging the plate and the batter missed a bunt attempt. Veras ran over to cover first and the catcher attempted a pick-off play. The Braves should have had the runner picked off, but Veras fell to his knees to catch the ball. He was between the runner and bag and had the bag completely blocked. When he turned to tag the runner, though, there was no runner there anymore. The runner had jumped over his head and made it back safely to first.

    Does anyone else remember that? Who were we playing that night?

  68. 68
    'Rissa Says:

    @66 csg, will do.

  69. 69
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    csg at @66, you’re both in my thoughts.

  70. 70
    'Rissa Says:

    New thread.

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