Braves Journal, The House That Mac Built

Thanks to Mac's family, bravesjournal.com is back.

11 Jan

Chipper Jones

Some people seem to have decided that Chipper is a problem. This is dumb; he’s one of the best players on the team. He’s not what he once was, but here you’ve got a third baseman putting up a .275/.344/.470 line. The team would not be better off if he retired. Yeah, you think they could get more by moving Prado to third and getting another left fielder. I doubt it.

Chipper walked less in 2011 (after I’d spent two years calling him “Zombie Chipper” because his primary offensive strength was drawing walks and staggering to first base) and actually had one of the lowest walk rates of his career. He made up for it with a little bump in batting average and rediscovering some of his power, hitting 18 homers and 33 doubles. I don’t know that it was worth it, in the Braves’ offensive environment last year (when they had trouble getting on base) but it would have been good in 2009-10.

He struggled a bit in May and June, and was hurt for much of July and August. When he returned in late August, he went on a big tear for awhile. He needs regular rest, and there’s going to be a good chance he goes on the DL for a time. But the Braves are better when he’s in the lineup.

Chipper Jones Statistics and History – Baseball-Reference.com.

168 Responses to “Chipper Jones”

  1. 1
    csg Says:

    Chipper isnt the problem. The problem is the Braves are still relying on a 40yr old that can only play 110-120 games to fill the 3rd spot in their order. Chipper is still one of the top producing 3B in the league.

  2. 2
    csg Says:

    Proctor has just signed with the Korean Doosan Bears. It would be priceless if thats actually pronounced (douche-an)

  3. 3
    Smitty Says:

    Chipper probably walked less due to the threat of an improved McCann and the power Uggla has.

    I like forcing teams to pitch to Chipper

  4. 4
    Coop Says:

    In our prayers as always, Mac.

  5. 5
    csg Says:

    I believe Chipper walked less due to our offensive issues in 2011. These guys probably felt like they needed to carry the weight for the team more and tried forcing the issue.

  6. 6
    justhank Says:

    If they bring you hospital-grade cheesesteaks, you should probably politely decline. Godspeed, Mac.
    ——————

    The interview segment on MLB TV with Barry Larkin was great fun to watch. You can tell they truly like the guy.
    ——————

    j3bagger – your entry re: the upcoming tv opportunity is fascinating. Please add to that when you can. Thanks.

  7. 7
    Smitty Says:

    Mac,

    I hope your treament proves to be the Dont’a Hightower of treatments. Fast, strong and dominate.

  8. 8
    Johnny Says:

    Good Luck Mac. I’ll be danged if Phillie isn’t good for something.

    I’ll take 110 to 120 games of ‘not what he used to be’ Chipper for 2012. I love this guys candor when he is interviewed.

  9. 9
    Mark Grogan Says:

    Mac, you are in our prayers daily. I went looking for 3 days in Philadelphia to compare: July 19-21, 2002. The Braves, behind the immortals Moss/Marquis/Millwood, swept the Phils 4-1, 4-3, and 2-1. I am looking for similar, ass-kicking results with this trip. Stay strong.

  10. 10
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Thanks for the update, Mac. As always, you’re in my thoughts.

  11. 11
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I’m in the Atlanta airport on a layover. Can’t get the airport WiFi to connect to the Internet, but fortunately I can tether on my brother’s phone. Boarding in about half an hour.

  12. 12
    Smitty Says:

    Have a good flight

  13. 13
    Kevin Lee Says:

    Godspeed, Mac.
    Still counting on you to do a Keltner list for Freddie Freeman when the debate comes.

  14. 14
    Smitty Says:

    It looks like Tennessee is close to hiring Alabama LB coach Sal Sunseri as DC.

    Great possition coach, better recruiter, but can he be a coordinator?

  15. 15
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Hey, maybe we should sign Fernando Martinez.

    EDIT: Oops, too late. The Astros got him. They actually seem like they might have a smart front office for the first time in a long time.

  16. 16
    jj3bagger Says:

    6- Since this got JC’d at the end of the last post, I figured it be okay if I reposted it since I feel like it’s perhaps one of the few things worthy of discussion so far this offseason:

    Love these writeups Mac. Thanks for doing them as always. Continued best wishes with your health, I hope you gain some comfort in all the people you have pulling for you.

    Haven’t had much to post about this offseason, so I haven’t, but one thing from a previous thread I think is worthy of further discussion.

    If the TV deals for both networks are done at the end of the year or the end of next year, and Liberty Media has no plans to sell the team, why wouldn’t they create some sort of Regional Sports Network to feature Braves programming? It is my understanding that they are in fact, a media company, and this would stand to make them a lot more money, which as far as I can tell is the only thing that Liberty Media cares about. It would seem like a natural fit for them to either create a Braves-centric channel, or continue the Root Sports brand that they/DirecTV own, perhaps a Root Sports Atlanta. Maybe I’m just dreaming, because this seems like the only hope that the payroll is going to be raised during the next decade is if a new revenue stream falls out of the sky.

  17. 17
    Mac Thomason Says:

    In Philadelphia. It smells bad.

  18. 18
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Don’t get too close to New Jersey.

  19. 19
    sansho1 Says:

    Don’t touch anything.

  20. 20
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Did you know this is the first time I’ve flown since 9/11? I went to Indy by car. And those are the only two times I’ve been outside Alabama and Georgia in the last ten years.

  21. 21
    justhank Says:

    sansho @19 is right. Remember, Snookie and The Situation are from somewhere up there.

  22. 22
    ububba Says:

    Other side of the state, which is a big difference.

  23. 23
    ryan c Says:

    Can someone explain to me how NFL contracts work, what the player is guaranteed. Here’s my take and please correct me if I’m wrong. Signing bonuses + the first year contract is the only guaranteed money and the other years are 1 year contracts that the teams can decline. Do the teams have to offer a reason for declining the contract? Are there any players that are guaranteed more than a year on their contracts? If a team decides to decline a contract, do other teams have an opportunity to pick a player’s remaining contract up, or does the player automatically become a free agent? Thanks in advance for any help.

    *Looked on the ‘net. Found nothing. Figured you guys would know.

  24. 24
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    Philly’s not a good walking city because there are still pockets of nasty in the generally nice neighborhoods. But it could be worse.

    It could be Camden.

  25. 25
    Bethany Says:

    @24 It could be Baltimore >_>

  26. 26
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Well, I’m at the University of Pennsylvania, which should be fairly safe, even if it smells of cheesesteak farts.

  27. 27
    ububba Says:

    South Street area’s fine for walking. Lotsa shops & cafes, a park nearby, easy to park your vehicle, if nec.

  28. 28
    Adam R Says:

    @26, I’ll wish you good luck despite your attack on my alma mater! Penn doesn’t smell, and Locust Walk on campus is nice to walk down if it’s not too cold. But the rest of the city reeks. Sulfurous stink, likely marking the presence of Shane Victorino, wafts up from grates everywhere.

  29. 29
    Mac Thomason Says:

    At the Alabama-LSU basketball game tonight, Alabama students cheered for LSU when they crossed midcourt for the first time.

  30. 30
    PaulV Says:

    LSU team bus could not leave New Orleans. Some joker painted a 50 yard line in front of the bus.

  31. 31
    JoeyT Says:

    Philly knows how to party. http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/story?section=news%2Fcrime&id=8498642

  32. 32
    Adam M Says:

    @28. Heh. My Alma Mater too.

  33. 33
    Jeremy Says:

    I interned in Philadelphia one summer and lived in Roxborough. I like the city quite a bit. The subway is disgustingly filthy, even by mass transit standards.

  34. 34
    sansho1 Says:

    @32

    Great, just when I resolved to tell you guys apart. :)

    Seriously, I’m developing a theory about internet handles, and why they seem to be going away. Something about some of us older folks holding on to the rather foolish notion that they’ve established a separate and anonymous identity. Thoughts? Why have a handle? Why not?

  35. 35
    Marc Schneider Says:

    At least Philadelphia has some character unlike Sun Belt cities.

  36. 36
    PeteOrr Says:

    I’m a big fan of handles personally – they offer me the comforting illusion that I can just completely walk away from anything particularly stupid or alcohol-inspired that I might type if necessary. But yes, this is most unfortunate news about the Adams.

  37. 37
    Adam R Says:

    If we ever get Another Adam R., we’ll be in real trouble.

    @32, Cool. When were you there? I was c/o ’05 — which was an awesome time to be a Braves fan in Philly. Wearing team apparel, I felt like a colonial subjugator in a foreign land. Totally outnumbered, but what the hell were they going to do about it? Beating them with Jaret Wright, John Thomson, etc. was utterly demoralizing for them.

  38. 38
    JoeyT Says:

    I’m a fan of most things you can do to get in the way of a cursory Google search finding everything you’ve ever done. For example, this is a Braves blog. What if I’m applying for a job, and I’m being Googled by a Mets fan? What if a client is offended by some comment and sees my name on the post? Handles help get rid of the obvious connection.

  39. 39
    JoeyT Says:

    @37, Being a Braves fan in Philly in the late 90s was even better, as you weren’t really outnumbered. The Vet was pretty empty almost all of the time.

  40. 40
    td Says:

    @14 – I still haven’t heard anything from the Alabama press saying Sunseri is likely to take the UT job. That would be somewhat surprising in that his son looks like a future star at Bama. Of course his other son is the starting qb at Pittsburgh, so it wouldn’t be the first time. I know he’s UT’s top target, but I don’t have a feel for whether he’ll take it or not (because it would pit him against his son, I’d give it about a 40% chance). I’m not sure about how good he’d do as DC, but my guess would be good, provided he gets the right personnel.

  41. 41
    Smitty Says:

    @40

    I am not sure he takes it either. He is the top target. However, Dooley is on the seat and I think he is the guy at Bama when the DC job opens up.

    Dooley is going to interview Navy DC Buddy Green (blach) and the Mich St DC. Dooley put all of his eggs in the Kevin Steele basket and struck out.

    I think the Mich St gu is trying to leverage more money out of MSU and if Sunseri says “no” Dooley may hire Green. That hire will probably be the next to last nail in the coffin.

  42. 42
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    A man owns his internet vitriol. A man does not hide behind a sock puppet.

  43. 43
    justhank Says:

    Has anyone ever seen Sam and House in the same room? I thought not.

  44. 44
    Seat Painter Says:

    A real man makes his own ad hominem attacks!

  45. 45
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    @44

    That is absolutely true.

  46. 46
    JoeyT Says:

    What kind of man hides behind an internet pseudonym? No man. No man at all. A crippled little rata. What a reputation to leave behind. Is that how you want to be remembered?

  47. 47
    justhank Says:

    Recently we were discussing agents and it occurred to me that I hadn’t heard anything about Leigh Steinberg recently. Now I know why:

    http://www.thepostgame.com/commentary/201201/leigh-steinberg-agent-alcoholism-bankruptcy

  48. 48
    Stu Says:

    John Thomson!

  49. 49
    Andrew B Says:

    @23 the main reason teams can’t/won’t/don’t just cut a guy is that when you sign a guy, his signing bonus can be spread out over the length of the contract for salary cap purposes. that’s why players are signed to 6,7,8 year deals that everyone knows they will never see the end of it. if you sign a 7yr 20 mil deal with a 14 million dollar signing bonus, you can spread the signing bonus over all 7 years at 2 million each, for salary cap purposes. BUT when you release or cut the guy, the entire bonus comes onto that next year’s cap. So if after year 2 you cut the guy, then the remaining 10 million all count against your cap for that upcoming year. That’s what keeps teams from doing it.

    So what a team will do is they will sign a guy now, give him a bonus and spread it out over 8 years or so to reduce the hit for the near-future with the idea that when they cut him in 4 years and take the hit of the rest of the bonus they a.)won’t be there anymore and it’s not their problem or b.) don’t care and want to win now, and will work it out later.

  50. 50
    PaulV Says:

    @44 Real men do not make ad hom attacks.
    @47 Speaking the truth about someone is character assination?

  51. 51
    Seat Painter Says:

    @50 – I thought real men don’t make strawmen arguments?

  52. 52
    justhank Says:

    Uh, it was just a joke, guys. Personally, I love the character on “House”.

  53. 53
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    John Thomson was actually a sock-puppet for an ageing Bob Tewksberry.

  54. 54
    Rusty S. Says:

    This is just a name I use to order pizza with.

  55. 55
    jj3bagger Says:

    I only use the name ‘Jeff Spicoli’ to order pizza.

  56. 56
    ryan c Says:

    Thanks Andrew! Did not know that about the signing bonuses being distributed throughout the contract. So, for clarication, let’s say that Mr. Football signs a 4/60 million dollar contract with a 16 million dollar signing bonus. His only guaranteed money is the 15 million for the first full year + his signing bonus(which might or might not be spread throughout the life of the contract) which would equal 31 million. Correct?

  57. 57
    ryan c Says:

    Pastornicky’s nickname is “The Rev”. Finally a decent nickname.

  58. 58
    Mac Thomason Says:

    So I saw the doctor and I am on the drug trial. Hopefully it will be successful.

  59. 59
    ububba Says:

    Go drugs!

  60. 60
    Nick Says:

    Sending well-wishes your way, Mac.

    Ouch. Al Horford out 3-4 MONTHS with a torn pectoral muscle. Three-and-a-half months would be the start of the playoffs.

  61. 61
    Johnny Says:

    Better living through modern pharmaceuticals.

  62. 62
    PaulV Says:

    We all pray that they are the good drugs.

  63. 63
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I don’t think that the Hawks will have to worry about the playoffs.

  64. 64
    Seat Painter Says:

    Good luck Mac, here’s hoping the drugs work!

  65. 65
    Nick Says:

    Unfortunately, I agree. Unless we make some kind of trade to fill the void.

  66. 66
    Smitty Says:

    Drugs rule. Cancer drools

  67. 67
    Timo Says:

    Good luck with the drugs, Mac!

  68. 68
    mravery Says:

    Go drug trial! GL Mac!

  69. 69
    Ethan Says:

    Good luck Mac

  70. 70
    Mark Graybill Says:

    Great news, Mac. Keeping my fingers crossed and thinking good thoughts. . .

  71. 71
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    Good luck, Mac. Considering the way that city seems to be treating you, I’ll consider booing Santa Claus myself.

  72. 72
    spike Says:

    Here’s hoping the verdict is “healthy”

  73. 73
    Adam M Says:

    Good luck, Mac.

    @37

    I graduated in 2002. The Braves won the division every year I lived in Philadelphia, which was fun. I too got to see The Vet empty save for a scattering of Braves fans and hard-core drunks. Good times. I do miss the city, though, and remain a big fan to this day. I just don’t miss… Philadelphians. Alas.

  74. 74
    Rusty S. Says:

    Good luck, Mac.

  75. 75
    billy-jay Says:

    Mac, depending on the drugs, you might want to watch some Red Fang vids. I recommend “Wires.”

    Same goes for the rest of you miscreants.

  76. 76
    billy-jay Says:

    “Prehistoric Dog” is great, too.

  77. 77
    billy-jay Says:

    Seriously, Mac. Best wishes for a speedy & full recovery.

  78. 78
    Marc Schneider Says:

    Good luck, Mac. With all the jokes about Philly, you are in good medical hands up there.

  79. 79
    clarke Says:

    Alright Mac! Good luck!

  80. 80
    Stephen in the UAE Says:

    Good Luck Mac! You have been in our prayers….

  81. 81
    Rob Cope Says:

    Godspeed, Mr. Thomason. I pray for a terrific recovery.

    So these Denver guys. Any shot that they beat New England?

  82. 82
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    @81

    No.

  83. 83
    ububba Says:

    Did you see what happened last time they played? Highly doubtful.

    In my pool, I’m giving the points.

  84. 84
    Bethany Says:

    The Broncos have a habit of beating the Patriots when they shouldn’t, and the Patriots are as bad this year as they’ve been in a long time. Nothing would surprise me. This is why I don’t gamble.

  85. 85
    krugerindustrialsmoothing Says:

    best wishes Mac.

  86. 86
    csg Says:

    With NFL lines at 14 or higher, you should probably always take the points. I wouldnt touch this one though.

  87. 87
    ububba Says:

    Patriots defense is bad. Their offense is pretty unstoppable.

    Denver’s offense is terrible & I don’t think they stop Brady & his TEs.

    The reason the line’s so high (mine’s 13.5) is because the Broncos aren’t any good. I think Pats win something like 35-17.

  88. 88
    Smitty Says:

    Sal Sunseri is the new DC at Tennessee.

  89. 89
    Bethany Says:

    Completely random, but I got the racing stripes extended on my Challenger.

    http://heckhouse.com/challengerstripes.jpg

    That car is worth every cent.

  90. 90
    csg Says:

    New England has lost in the first round the last two years. The Giants have beaten them twice this year, Buffalo and Detroit have also knocked them off. I dont see them losing this game, but I could see them not covering the spread.

  91. 91
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    It bears mentioning that the first game between Denver and NE wasn’t a case of the Pats beating the Broncos badly, as the score would indicate. Rather, the Broncos scored on the first three drives, easily, and only lost momentum (and the game) by fumbling three times in their own half of the field, in the 2nd quarter. NE’s defense didn’t actually stop them at all in the first half.

  92. 92
    Smitty Says:

    @91

    Well, except for forcing those turnovers. It isn’t like they just set the ball down on the ground and walked off.

  93. 93
    ububba Says:

    New England had 4 TD drives over 80 yards & over 450 yards overall—there’s your game right there.

    If Denver can’t stop them a little bit (and they didn’t last time), they have no chance.

    BTW, Giants only played NE once this year, a win in Foxboro. Jets lost to them twice.

  94. 94
    sansho1 Says:

    To me, the play is NE over 32.5.

    The spread is very high…but then again, it’s a night game in Foxboro, and the temp at kickoff will be about 22 degrees and dropping. Can Tebow throw downfield in those conditions?

  95. 95
    ryan c Says:

    Jack Wilson is a Brave again.

  96. 96
    Ethan Says:

    Aaaannnd, the offseason is a wrap.

  97. 97
    Nick Says:

    How breathtakingly exciting.

  98. 98
    MikeM Says:

    I guess Wren has forgiven Wilson for his run-scoring error in game 162.

    I, however, have not.

  99. 99
    Remy Says:

    Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers, Mac.

    Has anyone read Chad Harbach’s novel The Art of Fielding? These passages, quoted in a review, caught my attention.

    26. The shortstop is a source of stillness at the center of the defense. He projects this stillness and his teammates respond.

    59. To field a groundball must be considered a generous act and an act of comprehension. One moves not against the ball but with it. Bad fielders stab at the ball like an enemy. This is antagonism. The true fielder lets the path of the ball become his own path, thereby comprehending the ball and dissipating the self which is the source of all suffering and poor defense.

    Here’s the review at Slate:
    http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/books/2011/09/the_perfect_game.html

  100. 100
    PeteOrr Says:

    Wilson in 2011: .243/.274/.285

    Ugh. Maybe the idea here is to make Pastornicky look good in comparison even if things don’t go well for him at all.

  101. 101
    csg Says:

    #95 – Well, I guess our offseason is over. Honestly, Id rather have him over Cedeno. But its sad that our plan is Pastornicky/Wilson.

  102. 102
    Stu Says:

    Championship!

  103. 103
    Smitty Says:

    This means that Pastornicky is the guy and Wilson will be on hand for defense.

    If they are going with Pastornicky, then I like this move.

  104. 104
    csg Says:

    What if Pastornicky isnt better than Jack Wilson? Thats my concern

  105. 105
    justhank Says:

    @99 – Did George Carlin write that?

    Actually, there’s a zen to baseball that is, at heart, its appeal.

    I wish I was smart enough to understand which rhythm(s) got distorted for the Braves in September. I know WHAT happened, I just don’t know WHY.

  106. 106
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    I wish I was smart enough to understand which rhythm(s) got distorted for the Braves in September. I know WHAT happened, I just don’t know WHY.

    They stopped breathing through their eyelids.

  107. 107
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    What if Pastornicky isnt better than Jack Wilson?

    Then they get the same production out of SS they got last year.

  108. 108
    justhank Says:

    Anyone have any experience with the IMG Baseball Academy?

  109. 109
    csg Says:

    Wrong, as bad as AAG was offensively, he’s still better than Wilson. The Braves are likely to have two sub .600OPS SS’s next season.

  110. 110
    PaulV Says:

    Getting Wilson lets us PH for SS and he can back up CJ if we have a lead.

  111. 111
    ryan c Says:

    @109
    Likely? That’s setting the bar incredibly low for Pastornicky. A .300 obp and .300 slugging gets you a .600 OPS. You really think he’ll be worse than that?

  112. 112
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    @111

    Doom and gloom are the flavors of the off-season.

  113. 113
    Tad Says:

    I would have rather had Chipper retire and have Aramis Ramirez play 155 games at 3rd then have Chipper play his usual 110 …. we could have used Chipper’s money on Aramis ..

    Lineup would have been:

    Bourn,cf
    Prado,lf
    Uggla,2b
    Mccann,c
    Ramirez,3b
    Freeman,ib
    Heyward,rf
    Pastornicky,ss

  114. 114
    spike Says:

    @99, I shall have to read that, thanks. Butthis quote from the review made me smile – “Hall of Famer named Aparicio Rodriguez (a fictional character, though one whose name alludes to the great real-life shortstop Luis Aparicio).” Maybe it’s just me, but I saw just a hair more in that allusion.

    See how the mighty have fallen, indeed.

  115. 115
    spike Says:

    @113, I am not sure if this will matter to you, but Chipper’s retirement would most assuredly not remove his salary obligation from the club. Unless you think he’s just going to say “No thanks” to the 13M he gets for just showing up in Florida.

  116. 116
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    Aramis Ramirez, games played since 2006 (the last year he played 155 or more games:)

    157, 132, 149, 82, 124, 149

    Chipper, since 2006:

    110, 134, 128, 143, 95, 126

    Chipper out OPS+ Ramirez regular over that span.

    In addition, Chipper Jones is the heart and soul of the Atlanta Braves.

    When people ask why Albert Pujols didn’t stay in STL out of “loyalty” to the fans and city, remember Tad and his willingness to throw the best player this team has had in a generation out with the morning trash in order to sign a player who isn’t notably better than the HOFer in question.

    Pathetic.

  117. 117
    sansho1 Says:

    Remy, I read it. I liked the zen philosophy of fielding in the book-within-the-book, and a lot of the on-field baseball stuff in general. But all in all I was a little let down by the supposed “debut novel of the year”. Seeing as the author is a publisher of a swank New York literary journal, I believe the hype was, at least in part, a case of “logrolling” (as the late, lamented Spy magazine used to put it). Back-scratching, in other words.

  118. 118
    Remy Says:

    sansho,

    I’m aware of Harbach’s association with that literary crowd, and, to tell the truth, that’s made me a bit wary. (I’ve been that way ever since I got burned on Donna Tartt’s The Secret History years ago.) In other words, I won’t risk any money, but I have put our library system’s one copy on reserve. I’m eighth in line, so I should receive the book sometime around mid-May. The zen thing really got my attention. Reading the passages cited above, I was reminded of Bill Lee in the Baseball documentary saying, “Make the throw to second. Be smooth as silk.”

    I’m currently reading Patrick DeWitt’s novel The Sisters Brothers, a most delightful read about two hit men who work for the Commodore, a kingpin in the Oregon Territory. Both the language and the setting, but most of all the humor, remind me of Charles Portis’ True Grit. Highly recommend it

    Spike, A Cappella Books is having a huge moving sale, so be on the lookout. New titles included.

  119. 119
    kc Says:

    I really hope Pastornicky will turn out to be a fine player because 1) we don’t want to see Wilson playing everyday; and 2) we can finally stop talking about the Yunel trade. Hope is a dangerous thing, but what else can we do? As most of you said, I also believe there will be no more major moves coming.

  120. 120
    sansho1 Says:

    @118

    Thanks for the rec — loved True Grit.

  121. 121
    csg Says:

    Ryan, maybe I shouldnt have said likely. There’s certainly a decent chance that it wont be an easy transition for the kid. The Braves like what they see so hopefully it works out. I just hope he gets off to a good start and builds some confidence. FWIW, he’s projected with a .255/.300/.335 line by Rotochamp. We definitely need more production than that.

  122. 122
    csg Says:

    Guess I missed that the Braves avoided arb with Prado, $4.75m

  123. 123
    spike Says:

    @118, I will stop by this weekend – thanks for the tip!

    /bought my Bukowski novels there second hand a loooong time ago

  124. 124
    ububba Says:

    Yanks finally relent on Montero, trade him to Seattle for Pineda. Pick up Kuroda as an FA, too. See what happens when you fall in love with AJ Burnett?

    #118/#123
    A Cappella’s owner Frank is pal from UGA. Great guy & an old-school Braves fan. If you ever go in there, ask him to tell you the Preston Hanna story.

  125. 125
    spike Says:

    That trade is almost guaranteed to have a winner and a loser, but I’ll be damned if I could tell you which right now.

  126. 126
    JoeyT Says:

    I’d bet pretty good money that the Yanks win that trade.

  127. 127
    mikemc Says:

    The Yankees starting pitching is suddenly much stronger. It will be interesting to see what happens to Burnett.

  128. 128
    Adam M Says:

    They got Kuroda? Wow. I think they’re basically the team to beat in a top-heavy AL now. Love the Kuroda signing, like the Pineda deal (for both sides).

  129. 129
    ryan c Says:

    If any of you guys ever get a chance, come check out the 30A Songwriters’ Festival in Santa Rosa Beach, FL. It’s an incredibly unique experience with small venues all down the beach hosting some very talented people. I saw this lady last night. It’s a shame that amazing music like this is out there yet it goes relatively unnoticed.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkBnLzsLI3E

  130. 130
    ryan c Says:

    If the Sox do a kneejerk reaction to the Yanks’ signing and trade, I’d like to see us buy low on Ryan Kalish. He’s a lefty that can play all OF positions. He was hurt most of 2011 which has hurt his value tremendously. We might be able to get him for the Lisp.

    http://soxprospects.com/players/kalish-ryan.htm

  131. 131
    justhank Says:

    2011 Fulmer Cup results are in. Looks like Auburn held on to their early lead.

    http://tinyurl.com/fulmercup2011

  132. 132
    sansho1 Says:

    Does The Lisp have trade value? Maybe a tiny bit after last season. But the only rationale I could muster for the Lisp/Maicer Izturis trade was a salary dump by the Angels. IOW, I don’t think you can dangle The Lisp — The Lisp must be requethted.

  133. 133
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    don’t think you can dangle The Lisp — The Lisp must be requethted.

    This is very good.

  134. 134
    kc Says:

    I am not a fan of trading bat for pitching. So I tend to favor the M’s on the deal…but then you have to consider the real value of a Yankees prospect…

  135. 135
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I may not have gotten a fair sample (a lot of going from and to the airport) but from what I saw, Philadelphia is not an attractive city.

  136. 136
    ububba Says:

    With an often-unattractive personality.

    #134
    Depends on your situation, I think. The Yanks never thought that Montero would be anything other than a DH and it’s very likely that A-Rod’s going to take that spot a little more than they’d like in the immediate future.

    We’ll see how it works out, but it seems to me like a good deal for both clubs.

  137. 137
    urlhix Says:

    Wow. What a catch.

  138. 138
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    That catch to end the 49ers game reminds me of the catch Terrell Owens made to beat Favre in ’98.

  139. 139
    Alex Remington (Another Alex R.) Says:

    It looks like Tom Brady is all out of bubblegum.

  140. 140
    PaulV Says:

    Bethany, I hope you know how bad the driving in Boston is. I saw a young woman in the hardware store today who was wearing an Auburn sweatshirt. I said “WAR EAGLE” and said I had gone to UVA. She told me an UVA alum started Auburn football and that is why we share colors.

  141. 141
    Bethany Says:

    @140 I’ve heard stories about the driving in Boston, so I got a place outside of town and plan to use the rail to get into the city and save my car for more pleasant environments. The UVA/AU story is true! War Eagle!

  142. 142
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Tom Brady always makes me think of the 2000 Orange Bowl, when Michigan beat us when Ryan “Cade Foster Mk I) Pflugner missed an extra point in overtime while I was screaming at the giant mound of putty that was head coach Mike Dubose to go for two and the win.

  143. 143
    justhank Says:

    It’s hard to remember that Bama went through a “Bum-of-the-Month” coaching carousel until they got their (gulp) second(!) choice in Saban.

    Always wondered if Rich Rod + Bama could have been transcendant or just more wandering in the wilderness.

  144. 144
    justhank Says:

    True Boston story:

    I’m standing on the corner of Harvard and Something when I feel the need to yawn.

    Covering my mouth, I do so.

    A guy standing there whom I’ve never met (well-dressed, professional type) says to me, “You must not be from around here. I’ve never seen anyone cover their mouth when yawning.”

    Be afraid, my Southern Belle. Be very afraid.

  145. 145
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Everyone in Philadelphia was actually very nice, except they don’t know how to properly walk on sidewalks. Stay right, people!

  146. 146
    justhank Says:

    There’s a scene in “Rocky I” where Stallone is walking through his neighborhood in Philly.

    Looks like a Third World city after a hurricane.

    I’ve been in (literally) every part of Atlanta and have never seen anything close.

  147. 147
    sansho1 Says:

    It’s funny, the little differences you discover. In Seattle several years ago, I went to the movies with a date who was a Seattle native, and on the way out opened the door for her to go out first. She stood there uncomprehending for a second, then said nobody had ever done that for her before. Easy automatic points for the Southern gent….

    (On the other hand, pedestrians there do obey the traffic signals, unlike in the ATL….)

  148. 148
    Adam M Says:

    @146. That neighborhood is now mostly gentrified and quite nice. Can’t really take any city’s depiction from the 1970s and 1980s as representative of now, especially if that city is in the northeast and Midwest. Also, yes, the drive between the airport and university city is ugly; much of Philadelphia is quite nice. It has become much more cosmopolitan over the past 15 to 20 years.

    Personally, I find sunbelt cities ugly. Atlanta is one of the prettier ones – mostly because it’s one of the older ones – but it’s a sunbelt city nonetheless. No thanks.

  149. 149
    mravery Says:

    @138-

    That’s exactly what I thought (Though I think the year was ’99. Not sure.). I’m a 49ers fan, and this is like the first time I’ve been able to root for a good NFL team since I was in high school. What a great game. I think they’ll need another strong performance from Alex Smith, about whom I remain skeptical, but it’s hella exciting!

    Re: Philly-

    I had a good time when I went. I was in the downtown part of the city, though, which is no doubt nicer than the other bits. Saw the Liberty Bell, etc. One cool thing was Ben Franklin’s house (or the plot on which it used to be). They had these “cases” where they dug down to the level that his house was at, and they’ve got stuff like his kitchen table, bed room, etc. that you can look at. My favorite part was that they also had excavated his outhouse. So you could look RIGHT WHERE BEN FRANKLIN USED TO DROP A DEUCE. Weird.

  150. 150
    kc Says:

    Ladies and Gentlemen, Wren practically said it himself: 2012 Atlanta Braves starting shortstop – Tyler Pastornicky.

  151. 151
    PaulV Says:

    @140 Nothing like an intelligent woman with a hot car who is also a babe. I can say that as I am old and unreformed.

  152. 152
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    Philly’s not an ugly city. It’s actually quite nice in spots.

    IN THE SPRING AND SUMMER.

    All northeastern cities are sort of ugly and soul-killing in winter. Hell, even the sun runs and hides at 4:00 in the afternoon for fear of being caught outdoors. The only NEC city that is “nice” in the winter is NYC, and really that’s just Manhattan.

    London’s sort of the same way in the winter. When the dark comes, the northern cities aren’t particularly nice, especially not for those of us who are accustomed to climates where the sun doesn’t disappear before you leave the office in the afternoon.

  153. 153
    billy-jay Says:

    From Twitter: “Former Jags OC Dirk Koetter has agreed to become the new Falcons offensive coordinator.”

    I don’t know what this means.

  154. 154
    sansho1 Says:

    I hope he wasn’t the guy responsible for David Garrard getting cut at the end of training camp. That totally killed their season. The Jags had a pretty good team, with the exception of QB.

  155. 155
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    @153

    He was responsible for instituting a long passing game at Boise State and Arizona State, per his wiki page. And he improved the Jags offense while there.

    I really don’t know more than that, and that’s the wiki basics really.

  156. 156
    sansho1 Says:

    He was responsible for instituting a long passing game at Boise State and Arizona State

    And yet the Jags have primarily been a run-first offense. Who knows? I’ll say that, in the abstract, I’d much rather have a coordinator who tailors his approach to the available talent than a have-system-will-travel “guru”.

  157. 157
    justhank Says:

    Friend of mine has three kids that are autistic. His youngest (6) is the most severely affected.

    The owner of a local plumbing company donated a bunch of IPads to the elementary school’s autism group. After working with the IPads for less than a month, a large number of the kids have shown remarkable progress in opening up – speaking in full sentences, initiating conversation, etc.

    He (nor I) know why. Just thought it was a fascinating glimmer of hope.

  158. 158
    RobBroad4th Says:

    @157,

    My best friend’s wife and my sister (two different people thank God) are both working in music therapy with autistic kids. Stories like that are really inspiring.

  159. 159
    kc Says:

    I guess the Falcons were beaten by other NFC champion? I wouldn’t think the Niners will be able to beat the Giants if the Giants can keep playing like this.

  160. 160
    ububba Says:

    The Giants put pretty consistent pressure on Rodgers today and, overall, did a great job of protecting Eli. The Packer drops helped, but the refs kind made up for them by essentially giving Green Bay 2 extended possessions that turned into TDs. I had the Giants +8.5, but that was a wipeout I didn’t see coming.

    And believe me, the Giants are thrilled to be going to San Francisco instead of New Orleans.

  161. 161
    Bethany Says:

    @159 The teams the Falcons have lost to in the playoffs with Ryan have all gone to the Super Bowl. Maybe the Giants will continue the trend.

  162. 162
    Sam Hutcheson Says:

    Eli Manning is an overrated hack. I look forward to Victor Cruz shooting himself in the leg.

  163. 163
    Stu Says:

    You’re a weird cat, Sam.

  164. 164
    JP Says:

    @ 157

    I serve in the special needs ministry at my church and one of the kids has extremely severe autism. I have never heard him speak more than one word at a time. He recently got an ipad with an app that allows him to form sentances. He can click either “I want” or “I see”, then a new page opens with a ton of categories. It’s really amazing to see something that seem like nothing more than an electronic luxury make such a huge impact in a family’s life.

  165. 165
    kc Says:

    @160 If Alex Smith can win a freaking playoff game, I can’t see why Matt Ryan can not.

  166. 166
    ububba Says:

    Mark Sanchez has won 4 road playoff games, but I’ll still take Ryan.

  167. 167
    desert Says:

    161,

    Considering that the Falcons have beaten themselves three times in the playoffs already, they’re probably due next season to go to the SB.

  168. 168
    Mac Thomason Says:

    New post.

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