Sunday ended up being a pretty good day for the Braves as they managed to avoid getting swept on the season by the Cubs by beating them 5-1. The big news of the day was that Fried pitched pretty well in his first career start as a big leaguer and he even got credit for the win after lasting five innings.
In one of his most recent articles for FanRag Sports, Jon Heyman examined the job security of 17 managers who he figured had a non-zero chance of being fired or just leaving the job in another manner. Granteed, there were plenty of managers who he felt were likely to return, and one of those managers was Brian Snitker.
Braves president John Hart and GM John Coppolella have been pretty supportive, and there’s no reason to think the team was ready to do any better than this. Not yet, anyway. However, there’s a little drama at the top of the team hierarchy, according to a report in The Athletic, though there’s no reason to suspect that will change the thinking on the manager, which seems mostly positive at this point.
According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Braves will be making roster changes for both today and tomorrow — though the changes are what we’d expect. This just signals the return of Johan Camargo, Danny Santana, and Adonis Garcia from injury and this also marks the impending major league debut of Luiz Gohara. However, there was this interesting tidbit about Ronald Acuna:
Braves general manager John Coppolella said team officials haven’t ruled out the possibility of calling up No. 1 prospect Ronald Acuna, but it still seems unlikely. The 19-year-old outfielder, a candidate for minor league player-of-the-year awards, isn’t on the 40-man roster and is set to play in the Arizona Fall beginning in early October.
The Braves might wait to add him to the 40-man roster next year, when he will probably compete for a spot on the opening-day roster.
Freddie Freeman is still being productive at the plate, despite the fact that he told reporters yesterday that it felt like he was swinging a wet newspaper due to the loss of power that has come from playing on a wrist that hasn’t fully healed from being fractured earlier this season. The team trainer has suggested that he take a day off, but he told the AJC that there’s “no way” he’s going to sit. Zach Dillard of Fox Sports South is not pleased with this development.
Refusing to rest Freeman whatsoever, however, is unnecessarily reckless. The fact that he took the field Sunday afternoon — hours after the “wet newspaper” comment on a getaway day; hours before his next wrist check-up — was genuinely inexplicable.
Even team physician Gary Lourie suggested Freeman should take the day off. He did not, citing the fact that he's pain-free.
Dismissing medical advice from medical personnel is generally not considered advisable.
In further injury news, the Nationals were hoping that Bryce Harper would make a return at some point during the regular season. Now they’re starting to consider what life in 2017 would be like without Harper. There’s still a chance that Harper could return before the regular season ends, but it doesn’t seem like Washington is rushing it.
“Things haven’t changed,” [Nats GM Mike] Rizzo said, reiterating the initial prognosis that Harper would be able to play again this season.
“We’re very optimistic that he’ll play in the postseason, he’ll get some at bats at the end of the regular season to prepare himself for the postseason, but hey, these are injuries, you never know what’s going to happen, but we’re optimistic.
Even though Jeffrey Loria is on the way out, the new ownership appears to be ready to carry on the proud tradition of cutting payroll and fielding a team on the cheap. According to a report from the Miami Herald, the Jeter-led ownership group is ready to cut payroll to as low as $55 million — which would be where the number would be at if the Marlins decided to trade Giancarlo Stanton. While the rest of baseball is salivating at a potential bidding war for Miami’s monster slugger, our friends over at Fish Stripes are imploring the new ownership group to keep Stanton in town.