That's it for today. Thanks to everyone for stopping by with questions. Please come back next week same time, same place. --MC
Yes, mid to late August most likely. They hoped to have him playing in rehab games within 7-10 days of the trade. Would probably need about a week, at least, of rehab games before he joins Braves. He's coming off a strained hamstring.
They will have money to spend on a free agent or two this winter if they choose to. Braves haven't indicated yet how far they're willing to dive into free-agent pool this offseason, whether they think they're close enough to contending to make a big splash in free agency or wait another year. Don't look for them to sign any player who'll cost them a draft pick. They're are plenty of big free agents who won't cost a pick, however, because they didn't spend this entire season with one team.
As for the names you mentioned: Too early to know if they'll make a run at Cespedes. Not a decision generally made in July/August, or at least not leaked. I do not expect them to pursue JUpton (too much $ for type of streaky hitter he is, for a team with Braves' payroll) or Heyward (if they believed he was worth what he wanted before, they would've offered him extension then).
Not ruling it out, but I certainly am not expecting it. Braves have built up their system with young arms, and if they're going to spend more than $20 million a year on a player, I can't imagine it'll be for a pitcher. Just can't see that at all. Vast majority of long-term, huge-dollar contracts for free-agent pitchers haven't worked out in baseball, and only the biggest-payrolled teams can afford to make those kinds of mistakes or absorb the huge cost at back end of deal when pitcher (or player) is in decline.
Correct. (Not something I'm used to taking into account when discussing Braves, to be honest.)
Yes, they're concerned, to the degree you can be about something like that. i mean, there'd be more concern if his velocity was down or he was just horrible on road and mediocre at home. But he's been outstanding at home, ace-type numbers. So he's clearly not been hurt, and that's the most important thing. But yes, that start at Philly helped at least lessen the concern that the road thing has gotten into his head, which it seems pretty clear it had.
Don't know if they want to turn over young staff for last 6-7 weeks to Lavarnway and Bethancourt. A.J.'s working with them has been invaluable, not to mention his bat helps the offense stay afloat. Now with Freeman out, I mean, you can only take so much. As Fredi G said after bad loss in Philly, nothing good comes out of losing ugly repeatedly. You don't want the pitchers going the rest of the season with an offense that's even worse than it it now.
I do not. Big contract, big negative on the steroid background.
Yes, plus fact that a guy like Cespedes -- and plenty of others -- wouldn't cost a pick even if it weren't protected anyway, since he was traded during season.
That was first question answered.
This front office isn't gun shy. If they don't sign huge-money free agents, it'll be because they don't think team is ready yet and want to wait till they're about to move into new ballpark, and/or because they still want to evaluate a young player or two at a position rather than block that player potentially with a long-term FA signee, that kind of thing. But I also don't expect them to jump into the highest-stakes bidding for the two or three biggest-ticket FAs, especially not pitchers. Because teams without the largest payrolls can't make those kinds of mistakes, like a Josh Hamilton contract, which the Angels could afford to absorb but the Braves certainly would not be able to without significantly affecting them.
No, not done. Still actively monitoring that market.
Certainly possible, though I think they knew they would get better offers for Maybin this winter than they got at the trade deadline, too. So it only made sense to keep him and evaluate the overally CF situation this winter, see where Mallex is, see what offers are like for Maybin, who else might be out there for a 1-year deal, etc.
Sorry, but at this point it's nothing but speculation, not even much educated guessing involved. I'd rather wait a bit longer till i start to hear some names, rather than just throw them out there like so many others do.
He's done a remarkable job of keeping any frustration from boiling over into postgame interviews, etc. He's not once, and I mean not once, pointed a finger at anyone but himself. A couple of times, his frustration was apparent as he entered the dugout, but even then it was directed at himself, rather than him shouting at a teammate, etc. I've got a lot of respect for him for how he's handled this. Don't know many other pitchers who've pitched as well as he has, who could go a whole season without once even making a veiled reference to being frustrated by the run support or defense, or whatever.
That move would not surprise me at all. But I'd imagine they'd wait another year. Kid is 18.
Nothing new that I've heard. Expecting any day for him to start playing rehab games, but been saying that for weeks now. We all got tired of asking and getting the exact same response each time -- that there was nothing new, still waiting for his paperwork to get cleared, etc.
If the injury is severe, he could. But until later today, won't have any better idea whether it was severe.
I should say, WE won't have a better idea. After clubhouse opens, that's usually when we get medical updates. Rarely before then.
Yes, he's the kind of the big-power bat they've lacked in minor league system.
Didn't want to eat $20M of a $23.5M deal. Not like he was as bad as B.J. was. Not at all. B.J. was terrible and that contract had to go. Johnson still has some value, can still hit lefties in particular. And showed recently he can also still hit right-handers a bit, as well.
Vizcaino, for one, is distinct possibility.