Sep 15, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; The Minnesota Twins designated hitter Ryan Doumit (9) in the dugout before the game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Target Field. Twins win 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Atlanta Braves' News 2/15/14

Doumit intends to keep catching in a pinch

MLB.com

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Barring injuries or other unforeseen developments, Ryan Doumit will likely not see much time behind the plate with the Braves this season. But contrary to some speculation that developed a few weeks ago, the versatile utility man has no objection to continue handling the catching duties when asked.

While participating in TwinsFest at Target Field last month, a reporter interpreted a comment made by Twins infielder Brian Dozier to mean that Doumit did not plan to catch again during his career. This set off a chain of events that led to Doumit receiving calls from a number of people, including Dozier and Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez.

“I got a panicked phone call from Fredi,” Doumit said. “He was like, ‘What am I hearing? I was like, ‘I’m hearing the same thing and that’s news to me.’ But I assure you I have every intention on catching and I want to catch. That was one of those things where somebody’s wires got a little crossed. That happens.”

 

 

Braves minor leaguer Orrin Sears suspended 50 games after testing positive for PEDs

Hardball Talk

Braves minor league catcher Orrin Sears has been suspended 50 games after testing positive for metabolites of Methandienone, reports David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His suspension will start at the beginning of the 2014 minor league season.

The Braves selected Sears in the 24th round of last year’s draft. The 22-year-old hit .247 in 89 plate appearances in the Gulf Coast League.

 

 

Atlanta Braves 2014 Spring Training Profile: Craig Kimbrel

Rant Sports

The Atlanta Braves may have the biggest weapon in MLB on their roster, and he is one of the most seldom-used players on the team. Craig Kimbrel is an elite relief pitcher; in fact, there is no question that he is the best bullpen arm in baseball.

I hate the term “closer”. I really do. Instead of calling them closers, call them “high-leverage specialists” or something like that. Why do managers feel obligated to only use their closer in the ninth inning? We all know that reason — it’s the save statistic.

One way to make sure teams can start to get the most out of their best relief pitcher is to get rid of the entire save stat. Managers clearly feel like they need to save their closer until the ninth inning just so they can get their chance at the save. In some cases, a manager will have a lesser pitcher on the mound in the eighth inning trying to preserve a three-runs-or-less lead, and by the time the ninth inning comes around, the closer won’t be needed anyway because they lost the lead in the eighth inning.

 

 

The Value In The Teheran Deal Lies In The Option

Talking Chop

tending pitchers can be risky. They get hurt. Thus while at first glance, the six year $32.4 Million dollar extension Julio Teheran signed might look like a bargain, it’s quite a risk, and on its own merits, it might even be viewed as a bad deal. For the next two seasons, before this extension, Teheran would be virtually guaranteed ~$1 Million. Then things become iffy, as his arbitration numbers would be based on his performance. His arb years may likely break down to something like $4MM, $7MM and $10MM in 2016, 2017 and 2018 respectively. Meaning that for the arb years, you’re probably looking at something like $22 Million.

However, the Braves should have baked in a substantial discount in those numbers when extending Julio. With his first two free agency years projecting out values of something like $15 Million and $17 Million, considering standard free agency salary growth rates of 5.5%, it may look like a discount, but those values only hold if he doesn’t get injured and maintains his rookie year level, which are far from givens. Basically, if Julio remains healthy, a relatively large if, the Braves are guaranteed to pay $32.4 Million for $37 Million dollars worth of projection during the 6 guaranteed years of the extension. A discount, sure, but a very mild discount that almost certainly doesn’t make up for the risk they’re taking that Julio might suffer a substantial injury, or that last season may have just been a small sample mirage.

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