Oct 3, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; (Editors note: Caption correction) Atlanta Braves former player Chipper Jones throws out the ceremonial first pitch prior to game one of the National League divisional series playoff baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Atlanta Braves News 10/9

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

Braves boycott Chipper Jones for correctly predicting NLDS result

[Editorial Note:  Chipper certainly knows how to rankle, even when he may not intend to.  Does anyone know this organization, it's current "culture", weaknesses and strengths, any better than Chipper Jones?  I'd say no!  That said, if he makes an honest prediction that the Braves won't win the NLDS, should the Braves players and former teammates have left him hung out to dry on that 1st pitch?  I think it was yet another mistake in a list of many made by the Braves this year, the organization, Brian McCann, and others.  I've rarely seen grown men act more like children at times!  I predicted the same as Chipper, but not because I don't love the Braves!  Chipper loves this team, but was just calling it like he sees it.  When did that kind of honesty become a crime?  There's no correlation between a prediction and an outcome!  I'll probably have more to say about this soon.]

USA Today

Larry “Chipper” Jones threw out the first pitch before the Braves’ NLDS Game 1 loss to the Dodgers on Thursday. It was received by the Braves’ mascot, a Mr. Met knockoff called Homer the Brave. Jones, who retired after last season, is one of the most celebrated players in franchise history. But he did not seem thrilled by his exclusive audience with Homer.

Despite retiring from Twitter in August, Jones returned to the site with some rare non-hunting tweets. At first it seemed like he was maybe OK with it:

But as it turned out, he wasn’t.

Now, thanks to a New York Post report, we’ve got the full story:

Evidently, Braves players were not happy Jones had gone on the radio earlier in the day with the team’s flagship station, 680 The Fan, and predicted the Dodgers would win the NLDS in four games. So no player volunteered to catch the pitch.



Analysis: Loss to Dodgers brings Braves’ needs into focus

Via Miami Herald

LOS ANGELES – The Braves led 3-2 in the eighth inning Monday and were six outs from bringing the division series against the Dodgers back to Atlanta for a Game 5. Which is something, when you consider what a train wreck of a series it was for the Braves in many ways.

They hit .214 with one home run, five extra-base hits and 42 strikeouts in four games, while the Dodgers hit .333 with seven homers and 18 extra-base hits and had a .390 on-base percentage.

Braves pitchers posted a 5.82 ERA and allowed 46 hits in 34 innings, and Game 1 starter Kris Medlen and Game 3 starter Julio Teheran gave up a combined 17 hits and 11 runs in 6 2/3 innings.

The Braves’ defense was sensational in the second game of the series, but slipshod at times in other games.

And there were head-scratching moments. When catcher Brian McCann had David Carpenter pitching Yasiel Puig on the outer part of the plate in the disastrous eighth inning Monday, why was Freddie Freeman playing off the first-base line and Chris Johnson guarding the third-base line? Puig hit an opposite-field shot up the first-base line for a leadoff double, and Juan Uribe followed with a dagger of a two-run homer.



Atlanta Braves Have More to be Proud of Than Bummed About in 2013

Rant Sports

If you want to read negative things about the Atlanta Braves, this is not the article for you. The news is all over Major League Baseball. The Los Angeles Dodgers were one big swing better than the Braves in game four of the ALDS. Unfortunately for the Braves, it was the last game they had to lose and now they are forced to watch the rest of the postseason from their couches at home. That is the extent of the bad news for the Braves however. They were one of the best teams in all of baseball this season and they should be nothing but proud of it. The same goes for their fans.

I’ve already seen plenty of articles about how crushing the loss was and who all could be to blame for the timely defeat at the hands of the Dodgers. Instead of adding to the muddied voices that are calling everyone out on the carpet for what was wrong, this article is about what was not. For example, instead of pretending that Dan Uggla would have saved the NLDS, I want to point out how great it was that Jose Constanza proved he could hit some of the best pitching in MLB at the most pressured of times. There could be a roster spot for him next year.



How the Atlanta Braves Can Fix Each Major Weakness Before the 2014 Season

Bleacher Report

A couple days removed from a heartbreaking loss in Game 4 to the Los Angeles Dodgers, one thing became painfully clear—2013 was not meant to be the Braves’ year.

Yeah, 96 wins is great and all, but consider the following:

The face of the franchise for the past two decades retired the previous season.

In July, Atlanta’s No. 1 starter was sidelined for the rest of the year.

The jaw of the Braves’ brightest young star was broken in August.

One of the key cogs in the Braves rotation underwent a second elbow surgery two weeks removed from a return from Tommy John surgery.

Two players worth a collective $25.45 MM were deemed liabilities by manager Fredi Gonzalez and were either benched or left off the NLDS roster entirely.

When all of this is taken into account, 96 wins looks mighty impressive. Going into the offseason though, there are four major items to address on the Braves’ agenda.

Here’s what Frank Wren and Co. will be looking to fix this offseason.




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  • Josh Barnhill

    I had heard a replay of Chipper’s comments on Friday morning. It was good to hear his honest thoughts but at the same time I have to question him doing it so publicly. I don’t have a problem with the Braves not catching his pitch so long as it was done in jest, and not just giving him the cold shoulder. But you’re right, the Braves had a bit of a different attitude about them this year. I wonder if that’s due to Chipper leaving. And most of the tempers started flaring after Huddy went down as well. Look forward to reading your piece on that.

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      The beat writers seem to think it was not in jest… that they actually felt slighted (dissed, even) from that prediction.

      Guess Chipper had the last laugh. He was right.

      • Are Dee

        I disagree… He was wrong. He should have found a way to support the TEAM that always supported him… Even when HE was the cause of the wildcard loss last year. He can have his opinion… But this was one time when he should have kept it to his sanctimonious self.

        • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

          I do not disagree with you (at all)…nonetheless, he’s gonna feel vindicated.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            I just disagree with the notion that you are not supporting your team if you make a prediction that goes against them. That’s ridiculous. You are merely being honest, as many of us Braves fans were as well. Would the Braves argue that they lost “because” of the prediction Chipper made? That’s equally ridiculous. I guess he could have been intellectually dishonest and said, “oh the Braves got this”, but he knew better, as many devoted Braves fans did. I still and always will love the Braves, but the direction this ball club has been going in for some time doesn’t make for many predictions of future success. I don’t think Chipper was wrong at all, just honest. I think not catching him about as worse a faux paux as the Braves could have committed.

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      You also allude to this: the amount of roster turnover since just the end of 2012 is amazing. If Tim Hudson isn’t returned for 2014, then the player on the roster with the longest tenure will be… Jason Heyward.

      • Josh Barnhill

        What about Medlen?

        • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

          You are correct sir: I forgot about his pre-TJ surgery time. 2009 wins.

  • fireboss

    There’s more to this than we see. I don’t think Chipper and Fredi get along as well now as when he was a coach. There were several times after Fredi took over that he did things Chipper obviously didn’t like but he bit his tongue and soldiered on. He was at spring training for a cameo but he wasn’t put to any significant use. Chipper had a lot of respect for Braves history and loves the team but it appears to me isn’t happy with its direction and the changes that occurred post in the last few years. He should have used a more diplomatic answer but something was obviously sticking in his craw. Braves leadership – and I use that term with reservation – should have done the right thing. Eddie Perez would likely have caught the pitch or even Javy Lopez who seems to be around a lot but McCann was the man who ought to have done that.

    Earlier in the year long time Brave and a man integral to their history in Milwaukee, Johnny Logan died. The Braves still haven’t sent out a press release that I’ve seen while the Brewers made a huge deal of it. Logan should be in the Braves Hall of Fame as should Leo Mazzone who must have upset somebody very badly that they haven’t recognized his 15 years of taking care of Braves pitching.

    Chipper was wrong but he was never a diplomat or a great thinker about anything outside of baseball. The Braves were worse. They slighted a Hall of Fame player and man the fans love. The Giants treat Bonds better.