agreed, but werth could be a 20 base steal threat too. I also think via trade the braves could look at m.bourn/h.pence if either is avaiable. matt kemp or brett gardner (don't want curtis granderson) could be a possibility. as far as cheap goes I know coco crisp could be an option as PBF mentioned, but I like Scott Podsednik (only cost 1.6mil last season). he's hit over .300 the last two seasons with 30+ steals.
Overall though Crisp would be the clear choice overall if both were on the market (I actually don't think either will be), Crisp can play Gold Glove caliber CF which Podsednik cannot, Crisp can hit for some power which Podsednik hasn't shown any real ability to do, Crisp SB% have been over 80% (85% is considered by some to be the threshold between useful speed and negative speed) 4 out of the past 5 years while Podsednik hasn't had a SB% over 75% in the past 5 years, and finally Crisp is a switch hitter while he isn't as strong against RHP compared to LHP (RHP .275/.332/.399, LHP .283/.333/.437) compared to Podsednik being a pure lefty whos power goes from below average to terrible (RHP .283/.344/.391, LHP .270/.329/.348).
The real best case scenario for the Braves is the Red Sox sign Crawford and end up putting Ellsbury on the market, one can hope.
Reportedly the Braves are going to sign Larry Parrish to be their hitting coach.
I would like to say to anybody that badmouths the Parrish hiring should just shut up. I have seen some talk about his BA and OBP, anyone that brings that up when discussing a hitting coach are nothing more then dumb people thinking they no what makes a good coach. Just for perspective the guy many consider one of the best hitting coaches right now hit .258 in four seasons in the minors, for those that don't know it is Rudy Jaramillo but I am sure he sucks as a coach considering he can't hit.
I am not saying he will be a good hitting coach or a bad one but we're not going to know until a season or two at the earliest, so if you are trying to make any real judgement before he is even officially announced JUST SHUT UP!!!
It might possibly benefit the Braves to hear advice from someone different. Larry Parrish is as good a hire as any; we just didn't expect it.
As for the complaining about the type of hitter Parirsh was, that's absurd. The Braves just finished a season where they led the league in on-base percentage and Terry Pendleton is for from what anyone would call selective at the plate. In fact, the Braves ran the gamut from having a bare-bones offense to slugging the lights out under Pendleton.
Playing aggresively has nothing to do with speed (using hit and runs for example) because in reality having guys you trust will make contact is much more important for the hit and runs then anything else. The Braves just need more bats because after their top 4 it is all question marks and even the top 4 has problems (Chipper's injury risk, the fact McCann can't play everyday, and Prado coming off of injury), realistically the Braves should have enough room to add at least 1 bat but how competitive they are next year has a lot to do with major question marks at the bottom of the lineup.
I keep trying to do a Mock Offseason but I just keep hitting a roadblock because the salary limit and the names that most think will be on the market are just not that good looking and almost all have major flaws. I really believe the only hope of the Braves adding a serious bat to this team is through a trade and I hope I'm correct in thinking that Wren's "We are hesistent to trade from out starting pitching because it is a strength" comment is more a smokescreen to keep everyone's value high then a something to purely take at face value.
Some basic news for you guys.
Something everyone expected to happen did as the Braves picked up Gonzalez's and Infante's options while declining Farnsworth and Ankiel's options.
Some minor news as the Braves have claimed Joe Mather off of waivers from St. Louis. The Braves have been linked to Mather in the past, offensively he hasn't shown much except for some nice power but defensively he can play all positions in the outfield at what would appear to be at an average or better level. If the Braves non-tender Diaz and don't bring him back it likely is because they want a more defensive minded 4th OFer.
Edit :: I was trying to think of another potential trade for the Braves and here is another one that I came up with.
Rangers or some other team re/signs Cliff Lee :: This is key.
Andy Pettitte Retires :: Not needed but would make it easier.
Braves trade Eric O'Flaherty and Jair Jurrjens to the New York Yankees for Brett Gardner and Jonathan Albaladejo :: Braves would add a serious leadoff hitter not just in speed but with the ability to get on-base at a high rate, he also plays great defense in CF improving one of the Braves major weaknesses. The Braves also get Albaladejo who has been an average at best reliever in his small career thus far giving the Braves another potential middle relief arm and in the worst case scenario extra depth in the bullpen.
The Yankees in my scenario clearly need a starter and the free agent market looks pretty barren (in the situation they have) so they look to the trade market. Jair is young relatively cheap (for the Yankees it looks like he is making nothing) and under control for 3 years. O'Flaherty adds a needed lefty to the Yankees Pen (Marte would appear to be out till late next year and Boone Logan is their only other lefty) and is cheap and under control for 3 years as well.
The Braves benefit thanks to losing some salary while fixing one problem, it does weaken them in the rotation but not by a major amount and the Braves could shift the saved money to a free agent or another trade, the loss of EOF isn't huge because of Venters and the potential of Ortegano (I believe he takes the Venters route becoming a good reliever) Dunn already in the system.
The Yankees while losing a quality OFer could easily shift gears from a big pitcher to someone like Jayson Werth or go semi-cheap with a Thames/and some lefty.
Any Thoughts? I'll still try and come up with some other potential scenarios that could help the Braves.
Last edited by PureBaseballFan; 11-03-2010 at 12:51 PM.
edit: i also think with mather being pickup up that diaz is likely gone and will probably sign with the phils and then kill us next year.
That's a silly reason to keep him around, frankly. I could care less if Diaz joined the Phillies if he's leaving. The guy can mash when he's on, but he has to be used exclusively against left-handers or he's almost useless.