Friday, September 16, 2005

Weekend Thoughts

Dawgs win and probably cover. It's a lot of points. But then I think ULM lost to a 1AA or DII school in their previous game. I'm excited that quite a number of backups should get extended time.

The Dawgs welcomed their 20th verbal commitment of the recruiting season yesterday - LB Darryl Gamble. I see speculation that he'll be playing safety in college. Georgia's class is off to a strong start, though as they say nothing is set in stone until they ink on Signing Day and then graduate from highschool. Rumor has it that Georgia will be getting 6 or so kids from this class in this December (including Corry Moon - who came up just short on the SAT last year). Kids who get in for winter count against the previous year's scholarship total, so all of those non-qualifiers might not be as problematic for Georgia as everyone made them out to be.

Thank Gozer the Philly series is over. I think it was kind of a depressing preview of October, but hopefully I'll be proven wrong. Smoltz via Pedro should be a fun one to watch tonight.

Chipper Jones really is having a terrific season. I think had he not gotten hurt (and played hurt for a few weeks), he'd also probably be hitting over .320 or higher (I have no evidence to back this up; just a hunch). He's on pace for something like 45 doubles, 30 homers in a full season. I wonder if this years BB/K ratio (61/47 - and it got worse during the stretch he played hurt; I think he was pressing) is a sign of what to expect from him healthy in the next few years. A step forward if you will, after two years mostly spent unhappy in the outfield. I think this winter is going to be particularly interesting - and I'm sure Chipper to First is going to be a hot topic of discussion. I like LaRoche but I see logic in the move. And if we're not going to hit LaRoche against lefties, he's never going to get a chance to prove himself. Maybe he's better off going somewhere that he'll get 550 ABs.

In any case Andy Marte had a fine season at AAA, and I don't think he was as overmatched as his stats look in his brief time in with the Braves earlier this season. Whether Chipper will want to go to First is another matter entirely (I suspect he might take this differently from the move to the OF, but we'll see).

I still think Kelly Johnson has a future, but something is going to have to happen with he and Langerhans. One of them needs to play everyday. Langerhans has the defensive edge, which makes me think Johnson's future with the team might not be long. Though it's possible the Braves won't bring back Hollandsworth (letting him leave via free agency or trading him), I don't like the idea of either Johnson or Langerhans as an extra outfielder. They're both young, and have growing to do as players. They can only do that playing. With Francouer seemingly entrenching himself in RF, this will not be a situation to watch this Winter as well.

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