Oct 4, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman (right) consoles relief pitcher Luis Ayala (20) after they could not make a play at first base against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the seventh inning of game two of the National League divisional series playoff baseball game at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Braves' NLDS Edition 10/6

Morning Chop: Tomahawk Take’s Summary of Atlanta Braves’ News

Whicker: Freeman is vision of greatness for Braves

Orange County Register

LOS ANGELES – Our County has not produced a Most Valuable Player since 2000.

We present for your consideration Freddie Freeman.

Just one season afrer suffering through vision problems, Freddie Freeman (right) has put together an MVP-caliber season for the Atlanta Braves. The El Modena alum hit .319 with 23 home runs and 109 RBI in helping to lead the Braves to the NL East Division title.
Freeman is the Braves’ first baseman. He just turned 24 last month, and this year he bore the responsibility of placing the Braves’ offense on his ample shoulders and running with it.

He did.

It helped that he could see where he was going.

Freeman squirmed through 2012 with vision problems that defied contact lens changes, special goggles, Visine and prayer. He saw clearly this season and hit .319 with 23 home runs and 109 RBI.

The Atlanta fans chant M-V-P when he comes up, and he should finish amid the top five, at least. San Francisco’s Jeff Kent, from Edison High, won the award in 2000.



Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez is a film buff when it comes to hitting

Miami Herald

LOS ANGELES-By the time Adrian Gonzalez steps into the batter’s box Sunday evening to face Julio Teheran, he figures to have a decent idea of how the Atlanta Braves right-hander will attack him.

“Adrian is probably the smartest hitter I’ve ever played with,” Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said.

That’s why Dodgers players are sometimes seen talking to Gonzalez before their at-bats. There were multiple times this season when Yasiel Puig said the four-time All-Star’s advice helped him hit a home run.

For Gonzalez, everything starts in front of a computer screen.

Gonzalez spent Saturday watching video of Teheran, the hard-throwing 22-year-old who will take the mound for the Braves at Dodger Stadium in Game 3 of a National League division series.

“When I first started looking at video, I did a lot of stuff where normal people do, where they just look at their own swing and try to break down their swing so they can make adjustments on their swing,” Gonzalez said. “But then I realized that I don’t need video to know my swing. I know my swing. So I’m better off putting that time into getting to know the pitcher and catcher.

“Once I get to know the pitcher and catcher, I can pretty much call their game. I feel when I’m at the plate, I can tell what a catcher wants to call or what a pitcher wants to throw. At that point, it’s just about execution.”



2013 Top Prospects Recap: 66-70

Grading on the Curve

No. 70 Julio Teheran, RHP, Atlanta Braves

Height/Weight: 6-foot-2, 175 pounds

Born: January 27th, 1991 (Age 22)

2013 MLB Stats :2013 MLB Stats: 14-8, 3.20 ERA, 30 starts, 185.2 IP, 170 SO (8.2 K/9), 45 BBs (2.2 BB/9), 3.69 FIP

Heading into 2013: Once considered one of the top handful of prospects in baseball, recent struggles in AAA and the majors had significantly eroded Teheran’s stock. While he was likely to spend most of the year in the majors, it was unclear exactly what his role would be.

This season: Teheran secured a rotation spot in 2013, but struggled to a 5.06 ERA through the first month of the season. The braves stuck with him though, and he eventually settled in, becoming one of the best pitchers in baseball from May through August, going 12-9 with a 2.57 ERA and an 8.66 K/9. His performance was good enough to earn him a starting spot going in the post season, as the Braves announced that he will start game three of the NLDS.

Looking ahead:Regardless of what happens in the postseason, Teherean has established himself as a number 2 starter at minimum. Only 22, he still has lots of room to grow and could morph into a perennial all star –  a scary prospect for the rest of the NL East.

Stock: UP, but he has graduated from prospect status.



Braves Fans Breathing Easier

Atlanta Bullpen

Heading into Friday night’s game, there was a noticeable nervousness across Atlanta Braves country. It was only game two but it felt like game seven. The Braves’ backs were against the wall in a must win game two. It may seem somewhat extreme, but it certainly is not.

The Braves would have had almost no shot at winning this series if they had lost game two. Trying to win three games in a row in a series is hard enough, but then you add playing two of those three games on the road, on top of having to face Kershaw again…….forget about it.

The Braves were in a must win game two and the players played like they knew this same thing. Mike Minor was absolutely phenomenal, throwing six and a third innings, giving up eight hits, one earned run, one walk, and five strikeouts. For a young pitcher with the weight of the entire season resting on his shoulders, it doesn’t get better than that. He was tested with some adversity in the first inning, but he settled down and was brilliant from then on out.

 What also helped in this contest, the Braves being able to find their bats. It wasn’t an offensive explosion by any stretch of the imagination, but it was enough to get the job done. Would it help our blood pressure for the Braves to get some more runs and make you feel a little more at ease? Of it course it would, but that’s just not the Braves way of doing things in the postseason.





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