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Braves, Turner Field Newsbeat

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


Friday, July 15, 2016

Getting the 2016 Braves to the playoffs

Ya gotta have faith

At 31-58 (.348) on the season, the road to the playoffs for the Atlanta Braves is littered with obstacles. Some of these obstacles are tossed into the road by superior NL clubs, such as Washington, New York, Miami, Philadelphia, Chicago, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Cincinnati, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Arizona, San Diego, and Colorado. But other obstacles have been placed in the road by the Braves themselves, obstacles such as “being a shitty team,” “not spending money,” and “giving playing time to Adonis Garcia.” FanGraphs pegs the Braves division odds at 0%, their wildcard odds at 0%, and their overall playoff odds at 0%. The sabermetrics site expects Atlanta’s final record to be 61-101. In addition to all of that, the Braves are expected to sell their best players (Julio Teheran, Arodys Vizcaino, and Joe from downtown Atlanta) at the trade deadline.

Most people will dismiss the Braves’ season here in July, saying that there is “no way” the Braves can contend. These people look at fancy sabermetric numbers such as wins and losses and form a quick, shallow opinion. But, the games are played on the field for a reason. All is not lost for Atlanta.

Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: July 15, 2016 at 12:40 PM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, humor

Monday, July 11, 2016

Ordinance gives Braves development power to set vending areas | News | mdjonline.com

How many politicians are in the Braves pockets?

Another one of Cupid’s concerns was that the ordinance could impact property owners near the stadium and The Battery Atlanta by restricting their ability to allow vendors to set up in their parking lots or other parts of their property.

“That is how I interpreted the code, that any vending of items by those classified as vendors would not be able to within a certain distance” of the stadium, Cupid said. “I just get concerned overall when we start limiting commerce to benefit a particular use — even if it’s county or private, I get concerned about overreaching in that area.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 11, 2016 at 07:41 AM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, stadium deals

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Dodgers acquire Bud Norris from Braves

The Dodgers have acquired right-hander Bud Norris from the Braves, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com. Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan reports two minor-leaguers will go to Atlanta in the deal.

Norris, 31, will provide immediate starting depth for a Dodgers’ rotation that has dealt with injuries to Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-jin Ryu, Brandon McCarthy, Alex Wood and Brett Anderson so far this season. He has posted a 2.15 ERA over his last five starts, becoming a viable trade chip for a rebuilding Atlanta squad.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 30, 2016 at 03:07 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, bud norris, dodgers, trade

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

BA: Kevin Maitan Is Venezuela’s Next Great Prospect Read

Aside from older Cuban players who have come over, Maitan, a 16-year-old switch-hitting shortstop, is the best international prospect for July 2 since Miguel Sano signed with the Twins for $3.15 million in 2009. Scouts considered both players potential impact, middle-of-the-order bats, though staying at shortstop was never a realistic option for Sano. With Maitan, he might be able to stay there, which is why you can argue he might be an even better prospect.

It takes a lot longer than that to find a Venezuelan prospect as good as Maitan at his age. It’s not that the 6-foot-2, 175-pound Maitan is similar to Miguel Cabrera, but it’s easy to see why there are Venezuelan scouts who consider Maitan the best 16-year-old amateur prospect the country has produced since Cabrera signed with the Marlins 17 years ago for $1.9 million.


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Sandy Springs erupts over ‘nightmare’ plan to run Braves traffic through its streets

Cobb County’s plan for handling traffic generated by the Atlanta Braves next year is to get fans off I-285 and onto surface streets in adjacent communities.

The mayor and city council of Sandy Springs learned of this for the first time on Tuesday. They are not pleased. ...

The news account quotes a “visibly angry” Mayor Rusty Paul as calling the Cobb plan “our nightmare.” The mayor also said he had made calls to ranking Cobb officials to discuss traffic planning, but had never heard back.

We contacted Paul last night. He declined to escalate the situation – saying he was “optimistic that a solution can be achieved.”

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 23, 2016 at 04:25 PM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, traffic

Monday, June 13, 2016

From garbage man to garbage innings: An ode to Joe Winkelsas

An American (un?)success story.

It was there that a Brewers scout (re)discovered Winkelsas’ arm, which the pitcher claimed was restored by hauling garbage cans.


Saturday, May 28, 2016

Remington: How to Lose Fans and Alienate People: The 2016 Atlanta Braves

Watching the team fail so spectacularly, and seeing the front office blame the manager for losing with a roster that Babe Ruth and Joe McCarthy couldn’t save, raises a disturbing question: is the team being torn down and rebuilt by people ill-equipped for the task?

On May 1, the Braves tried to call up Emilio Bonifacio, a player they’d released in spring training then re-signed to a minor league contract. It turned out he was ineligible due to a rule that teams must wait 30 days to call up players whom they have cut and re-signed, a rule the front office had overlooked. “They bungle these little things,” says Bill Smith, a disability benefits specialist in Chattanooga. “You wonder if they know what they’re doing.”

Worse was the team’s blockbuster trade for Cuban defector Hector Olivera. Team scouts and then-manager Fredi Gonzalez loved him and pushed the front office to trade young pitching and prospects for the 30-year old third baseman, who was in the Dodgers’ minor leagues at the time, getting back into playing shape after two years moving through the administrative process of defection. Shortly after the trade, the Braves announced that he was moving to the outfield because they didn’t believe he could stick at third.

In early April of 2016, he was arrested on domestic violence charges and placed on administrative suspension by major league baseball. Before the league announced his punishment, Yahoo’s Jeff Passan reported that the team was trying to trade him, only to find — predictably — that he is perceived around the league as untouchable. On May 26, the league handed down an 82-game suspension, announcing that Olivera will be ineligible to play until August 1. There is a chance that he may never play another game by the Braves.

“It feels like every move has backfired,” Tremayne says.

Renegade JE (((Jason))) Posted: May 28, 2016 at 07:52 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: atlanta, barves, braves, fans, suckgate

Friday, May 27, 2016

Hector Olivera’s suspension doesn’t fully clarify future with Braves | Jeff Schultz blog

Anyone is tradable.

While Olivera’s case appears headed toward resolution, his future with the Braves is less certain. The fact he remains an unproven commodity and is signed through 2020 (with salaries totaling $32.5 million, including $8.67 million this season), makes him relatively untradeable. Yes, I say that even though the team found a way to trade Melvin (B.J.) Upton (packaging him with one of the team’s most valuable assets, closer Craig Kimbrel).

Jim Furtado Posted: May 27, 2016 at 09:40 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, hector olivera

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Hector Olivera suspended 82 games for domestic violence incident

Braves outfielder Hector Olivera has been suspended 82 games under the league’s domestic violence policy, MLB announced Thursday. The suspension is retroactive to April 30 and will end August 1. Olivera agreed not to appeal.

“My office has completed its investigation into the allegation that Hector Olivera violated Major League Baseball’s Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy on April 13, 2016,” commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. “Having reviewed all of the available evidence, I have concluded that Mr. Olivera violated the Policy and should be subject to discipline in the form of an unpaid suspension that will expire on August 1st. Mr. Olivera has also agreed to make a significant charitable contribution to one or more charitable organizations focused on preventing and treating survivors of domestic violence.”

The suspension stems from an incident at the team hotel last month. Olivera has been charged with misdemeanor assault and battery after a woman alleged she had been assaulted. MLB placed Olivera on administrative leave shortly thereafter.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 26, 2016 at 05:20 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, domestic abuse, hector olivera, suspensions

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Atlanta Braves prospect Dansby Swanson stays focused in Double-A debut with Mississippi | MiLB.com

Here’s another guy who looks like he’s going to be pretty, pretty good.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 24, 2016 at 11:39 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, dansby swanson

Braves trade minor leaguers for draft pick (and Matusz)

The Braves made another trade Monday that underscores the importance they place on the June draft in their rebuilding plan.

They traded minor league pitchers Brandon Barker and left-hander Trevor Belicek to the Orioles in exchange for left-handed reliever Brian Matusz and the No. 76 pick in next month’s draft. That brings to five the number of picks the Braves hold among the first 80 picks in the June 9-11 draft, Nos. 3, 40, 44, 76 and 80.

The Braves immediately designated for assignment the contract of Matusz, who could traded or released.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 24, 2016 at 11:08 AM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, brian matusz, draft picks, orioles, trade

Friday, May 20, 2016

Braves’ front office situation seems unsettling | www.myajc.com

Then they changed their mind. It’s called image preservation. The decision was made to fire Gonzalez, and it was done clumsily by Coppolella. (Gonzalez receiving an emailed itinerary for a one-way ticket out of Dodge before he had been told anything.) Then it was the more-polished Hart who parachuted into Pittsburgh and did most of the media commitments, in part because public speaking isn’t Coppy’s forte.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 20, 2016 at 12:00 PM | 77 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, front office, general manager

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Braves fire Gonzalez as manager

Jeff Francoeur knows a good airline to get him out of town.

The Braves fired manager Fredi Gonzalez on Tuesday, after one of the worst half-seasons in the franchise’s 140-year history was followed by its worst-ever start to a season. They have a majors-worst 7-28 record.

An announcement of the firing and his replacement was expected from the team later Tuesday.

Although it’s widely known that the Braves are in the midst of a rebuilding effort that gutted the major league team while fortifying the minor league system, Gonzalez had long been a lightning rod for criticism from fans and some media members, and he ultimately paid the price for the team’s dismal performance.

Gonzalez, 52, was in his sixth season as Braves manager after replacing his mentor, Bobby Cox, when the legendary Braves manager retired after the 2010 season. He is the first Braves manager fired since Russ Nixon was dumped in June 1990 and replaced by Cox.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 17, 2016 at 11:29 AM | 116 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, fired, fredi gonzalez

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Braves trade Chacin to Angels for lefty relief project

The Braves traded starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin to the Los Angeles Angels for 6-foot-8 left-hander Adam McCreery, a low-level relief prospect who’s 23 and hasn’t pitched above the rookie-league level.


Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Atlanta Braves should bring back Chief Noc-A-Homa and the teepee

We live in a politically correct world these days, with people sensitive about anything and everything. We can never be in other people’s shoes to understand why something might upset them, but there’s little doubt, it seems easy for everyone to find something that gets their goat.

Perhaps that was a disclaimer that what I’m about to write might upset some, but it doesn’t worry me enough not to write it. Twenty-five years ago when the Atlanta Braves became the team everyone loved, it was easy for Native Americans to complain about things with the nickname that upset them.

That’s a shame. But it’s time to make the Braves special again as they move into Sun Trust Park next season. It’s time to bring back some of the things we grew up with that made the team special.

It’s time to bring back the teepee. And while we’re at it, let’s bring back Chief Noc-A-Homa and Princess Win-A-Lotta.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 04, 2016 at 08:38 AM | 150 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, mascots

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Credit the Braves for trying stuff. Lots of stuff, actually | Mark Bradley blog

Change is easy when you stink.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 03, 2016 at 10:18 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Monday, May 02, 2016

The Braves Play Taxpayers Better Than They Play Baseball

Over the last 15 years, the Braves have extracted nearly half a billion in public funds for four new homes, each bigger and more expensive than the last. The crown jewel, backed by $392 million in public funding, is a $722 million, 41,500-seat stadium for the major league club set to open next year in Cobb County, northwest of Atlanta. Before Cobb, the Braves built three minor league parks, working their way up the ladder from Single A to Triple A. In every case, they switched cities, pitting their new host against the old during negotiations. They showered attention on local officials unaccustomed to dealing with a big-league franchise and, in the end, left most of the cost on the public ledger. Says Joel Maxcy, a sports economist at Drexel University: “If there’s one thing the Braves know how to do, it’s how to get money out of taxpayers.”

The Atlanta Braves own most of their minor league farm system, including, along with a Double-A team, the Triple-A team in Gwinnett County, Ga.; the Single-A team in Rome, Ga.; and lower-level teams in Danville, Va., and Lake Buena Vista, Fla. It’s an unusual arrangement. Major League Baseball teams always manage their players at every level, but they usually leave the day-to-day operations of farm teams to independent owners. The Braves prefer more control. “We can create a seamless thread all the way through our system,” says Mike Plant, the team’s president of development. The teams are all named the Braves and wear near-identical uniforms. Even the “Tomahawk Chop” chant is the same from Atlanta to Rome. “We definitely extend that Braves brand through everything we do,” says Plant.

The Braves are similarly methodical about using other people’s money to build their ballparks. In 2001, for example, while trying to persuade Rome to build a $15 million, 5,105-seat stadium for the Single-A Braves, who then played 150 miles south in Macon, the Braves brought local officials to Turner Field for executive dinners and to watch games from the owner’s box. “It was hands down the highlight of my life,” then-Floyd County Manager Kevin Poe says. That November, Rome voters approved a 1¢ sales tax to pay for the stadium by a 142-vote margin.


Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Why Would Anybody Watch the Braves? (Baseball Prospectus)

Fightin’ words:

If you were in the Atlanta area on Sunday, you could have seen matinee performances of ‘Dream Girls’ (at the Cobb Civic Center in Marietta) or ‘Ragtime’ (at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center). You could have attended an Italian Film Festival at the Plaza Theatre, or the Sweetwater 420 Festival in Centennial Olympic Park, where the craft beer was flowing and live music played. It was a free entrance day at several National Parks, including nearby Chattahoochee Park. Instead of pursuing any of those opportunities, 32,085 people bought tickets to see the Braves host the Mets, and I’m writing this article just to ask a simple question: Why?

Why, when the Braves started 4-13 in their final season as true residents of Atlanta, rather than white suburbia, keep throwing good money after very, very bad? Why, when this team’s upper management threw a temper tantrum over a bad month and a half in late 2014 and traded away nearly all of what was a tremendous, successful core of exciting young players, place any faith in their current plan to stomach years of losing in the hope of building another such core? Why, when this team is going nowhere this season and benefits far more from losing than from winning, go to the park and implore them to do the latter?

Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: April 26, 2016 at 06:21 AM | 135 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Friday, April 22, 2016

Braves may complain to union about condition of Turner Field infield

This would never happen with a new stadium!

Unhappy over the conditions of the Turner Field infield, Atlanta Braves players are considering contacting the players’ union to see if they can pressure their own club to make improvements, a source within the organization told ESPN on Thursday.

The source speculated that with the Braves leaving Turner Field for a new stadium after this season, the playing surface is not being treated with the same meticulous care as in the past and that the problem areas are the uneven grass and the unpredictable area where the turf meets the infield dirt….

“This is a tough infield,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “You look at Dodger Stadium versus this field, and this field, the guys talk about it around the league that it is not the best infield as far as playing.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 22, 2016 at 02:26 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, field conditions, mlbpa, turner field

MLB’s replay rule can be challenging: When to challenge? | www.ajc.com

Yes, what we need is more replay. How about we cut the game time down to one hour so we can have two hours of replay and still get the game in under three hours?

Francoeur said he’d like to see managers get two challenges per game. “That’s why I get frustrated — it doesn’t make sense that there’s only one challenge,” he said. “That’s such a huge call in the game.”

Jim Furtado Posted: April 22, 2016 at 01:53 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, replay

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Braves stock to begin trading Monday

Talk about junk bonds…

Shares of stock in the Braves are expected to begin trading Monday, according to team owner Liberty Media.

Liberty said it completed a long-in-the-works transaction late Friday to exchange its existing stock for three new tracking stocks – one tied to the Braves (Liberty Braves stock), one tied to the company’s 61-percent stake in satellite radio provider SiriusXM (Liberty SiriusXM stock) and one tied to the company’s other holdings (new Liberty Media stock).
Each share of Liberty’s existing stock is being exchanged for one share of Liberty SiriusXM stock, 0.1 share of Liberty Braves stock and 0.25 share of the new Liberty Media stock, according to the company.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 19, 2016 at 08:45 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Braves’ Hector Olivera arrested after domestic dispute

Reports in Washington, D.C. are saying Atlanta Braves left fielder Hector Olivera has been arrested after being involved in a domestic dispute.

ABC7 reported the female victim had bruises and was transported to Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, VA.

Olivera was at a Ritz Carlton and was taken into custody.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 13, 2016 at 10:50 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, domestic incident, hector olivera, police blotter

Monday, April 11, 2016

Braves (0-5) are a minor league product in a major league season | Jeff Schultz blog

NEWSFLASH: The Braves stink.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 11, 2016 at 08:32 AM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: braves

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Braves prospect John Gant has one of the strangest deliveries you’ll ever see | MLB.com

Who is the MLB VP in charge of the Ministry of Silly Windups?

Jim Furtado Posted: April 07, 2016 at 08:58 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, john gant

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