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Langerhans Delenda Est

The suffering is finally over for Ryan Langerhans in a Braves uniform, we need not destroy him or persecute him further, he is no longer our concern. Langy was traded after today's game to the Oakland A's for whichever warm body the A's don't want to send us or some Benjamin's. It most likely came down to the Braves deciding that they would release Langerhans, and before they did that they called around and offered him up to anyone who might be in need of an .068 hitter...and Oakland bit. Which begs the question, in what world is Ryan Langerhans a moneyball player?

Apparently, they needed a warm body who could track down balls in center field and Ryan Langerhans fits that description. In his place, the Braves called up minor league outfielder and sometimes second baseman Willie Harris. He has the range to backup Andruw in center and was hitting quite well at Richmond - batting .362 with great plate discipline (8 walks verses 6 strikeouts). He was leading the team with 7 stolen bases, 7 doubles, 2 triples, and a 1.061 OPS.

Willie will bring an element of speed that the Braves have lacked this season - we are tied for the third fewest steals in the major leagues. Eight players in the majors have more steals than the Braves have (6) as a team. If Harris can sustain three-fourths of what he's done at Richmond he will be a solid contributor - ironically if he can sustain just one-fourth of what he's done at Richmond he will be better than Langerhans...let's say it's not big shoes he's filling. But we need someone to be a solid contributor, and let's hope Willie fills the role. If nothing else, let's hope that Willie can contribute as a pinch hitter. As a team we are batting just .184 (7-for-38) in pinch-hit situations.

To Ryan Langerhans, I really do wish him the best. His struggles, which date back to last year, are something that has been hard to watch a player go through. He's got talent, and perhaps in a similar fashion to Mark DeRosa, he'll eventually harness that talent.

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