Questions and answers on the Braves

Here are some questions and answers about the Atlanta Braves.

technodude wrote: Bill, I am sorry for being redundant.  With Borchard being out, do you think that Jason Perry will get a shot with the Braves?  He appears to be doing pretty well with the bat in terms of batting average and power.  However, I have read that his glovework is suspect...

He's a AAAA player, and the Braves have enough of those on the roster right now. It's unlikely he'll get a chance.

Spahnie wrote: Bill, if the Braves continue to slide this month, what scenarios are more likely to happen with the team roster?

There's not a lot of replaceable depth to improve the club in the minors, do you see any trades that may have a further future look at 2009 in the offing?


Vaya Los Bravos

I wrote an article about it over the weekend. It's on the front page. What will Frank Wren do?

knoxbravesfan wrote: Bill could we expect top prospects for Tex if we put him on trade market? Or would it be better to let him walk and take our picks in draft?

If he were put on the market, I would think he could get a pretty significant return, even for a two month rental. But they won't make that call for another month, if then, based on where the Braves are in the standings. But they won't cry if it's just draft picks.

david55 wrote: Bill,

Do you believe they brought Jones up to showcase him? I don't think that was the reason, but who am I!! Also, if we had a better hitting backup catcher, we could rest Mac a little more thus making him stonger for the end of the season, do you agree? There has to be a Henry Blanco, Paul Bako out there somewhere???

Clint Sammons would be nice, and I won't be shocked if they bring him up and release Corky sometime soon. As for Brandon, it would not shock me if he were brought up for that reason. I think there is a split in the organization about his ceiling.

Tomahawking4life wrote: Bill,

Do you think Morton is up for the rest of the season or does it all depend on his next start?

It depends on Glavine and Hampton. If they come back, Charlie might be sent back down. They'll have no choice but to put Hampton or Glavine back in the rotation. But if they remain on the shelf, Morton should be here for good - hopefully for the next decade.

PurpleBrave wrote:

Bill, do you think Stockman will have a chance to close or will it be mostly a committee until Gonzalez is fully healthy or we make a trade?

They just won't give Stockman a chance at much of anything right now, which is a shame. I don't know about him closing, but I think he could be an effective part of the bullpen.

CharlotteBrave wrote: Bill, I notice that Chuck James is really on a roll at Richmond right now. He pitched a seven inning shutout last night against Charlotte with no walks and now has a 14 consecutive inning scoreless streak and 1.18 earned run average. Do you think he would have some decent trade value and do you think he still figures into the Brave's future plans?

He is improving his value. You wonder if they'd give Chuck a chance as a lefty reliever, but they already have a million as it is. But he should have at least some trade value now that he has done well in Triple-A.

bravesfan84 wrote: Bill,
With having both Gorkys and Jordan both coming along in the next few years, do you see the braves moving one of them to make room for the other.  Which one do you think would be the one moved?

I just figured that at some point, the outfield is going to be Heyward (LF), JS/Gorkys (CF), and Francoeur (RF).  Just wondering your opinion on which guy you would like to see in CF for the next 5-10 years.

I think both Schafer and Hernandez have outstanding potential, and Heyward has a real chance to be a star. Whichever player can fetch the best prospect for the rotation is the one I'm in favor of moving, regardless of who it might be.

palioc33 wrote: Bill,

I am at the moment EXTREMELY FRUSTRATED. Mike Gonzalez comes back and we send down PHIL STOCKMAN? Really? This guy has done nothing but impress every time he has pitched. Yet Bobby never uses him despite how effective he has been. And now this bullcrap. We send him down and keep 4 lefties? Do Bobby and Wren hate this guy or something? What is the deal? Why don't they let him stay up here and pitch?

I don't know the answer to this. I find it surprising as well. I wish they would give him more of a chance.

JeffMarte06 wrote: Bill honestly is Gunderson for real?? I know hes a small kid but everytime i look at the box score its a inning or 2 of always scoreless ball yet not many ppl on this board bring his name up much?? how does he project and do the braves consider him a legitimate late inning big league pitching prospect?

I think he's got a chance to be a big leaguer. His stuff is not overpowering, but he gets people out. He kind of reminds me of Will Startup, as far as underwhelming stuff and the ability to be aggressive and get people out. I think the Braves feel the same way. I won't be shocked if he's in big league camp next spring and pitches in the big leagues next season.

bcldwell wrote: Schafer has been struggling against lefties since he came back. Do you still think he will be on the Braves roster at some point this season, possibly as soon as after the All-Star break?

Yes I think it he could be recalled at any time. If Kotsay remains out, there's a chance we could see Schafer before the All Star Break.

ABraves111 wrote: Bill

Is there anyway we see Gorkys Hernandez in Atlanta this year. He is having an awesome year ath the beach. I assume his SB are down do to the hamstring injury. Also doe he have a shot to be the team out of ST next year

I don't think he'll be up this season, but we will see him next year in Atlanta if he's in the organization. He's an outstanding prosepct, and if he had not missed a month he'd probably be getting even more publicity. It's going to be interesting to see his track to the big leagues.

chienmingwang wrote: Bill,i  just heard that Johnny Almaraz had signed a young Taiwanese catcher.Do you have any detail about this case?

It was Phil Dale, the scout in the Far East. The only thing I know is what I've read on the Internet. It's obvious this kid signed with the Braves and will be in the GCL next summer.

mrwright wrote: Bill, I highly doubt the Braves will be sellers this year, but do YOU think they will be more along the lines of buyers or standing pat?

It just depends on where they are after the All-Star Break. That's when Frank Wren is going to make a number of decisions, including whether the team will be buyers or sellers.

BamaBraves wrote: Bill, what is the latest on Hampton and Glavine? Both were said to hopefully be back around the All-Star break. Have any dates been set yet? I know Hampton is going to make rehab starts (again) but will Glavine?

Hampton is throwing one more time in the GCL and then if all goes well he'll move on to one of the top four farm teams for a series of rehab starts. I would imagine he's still a month away from being an option. Same with Glavine. It'll be at least a month if he returns at all.

Ghostposter wrote: Bill,

Do you think the Braves would have any interest in Hank Blalock from the Rangers if they do not excercise their option at the end of the year? I had read somewhere that he had already agreed to move to firstbase for the Rangers, this year.

Well it would be a gamble to sign someone that has had that much injury trouble and someone that would cost a great deal. I would be surprised, but he is an interesting option to keep in mind.

BamaBraves wrote: Bill why would John Smoltz not be placed on 60 day DL? What is the difference between the 15 and 60 day DL other than the length of time?

Thanks for your hard work!

They usually don't put a player on the 60-day DL until they have to. As far as I know, there's really not much of a difference except the length of time. But I would imagine he will eventually be on that 60-day list.

Bill Shanks hosts The Atlanta Baseball Show on 680 the Fan in Atlanta and The Bill Shanks Show on SportsRadio 105.5 the Fan in Macon. He is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. You can email Bill at

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