Inspired by my favorite sports blog Cartilage Free Captain I am here to bring you weekly player ratings for your Atlanta Braves or Barves as the case may be. I will try to do this weekly from now on, but I’m not getting paid for this gig so who knows. In this hard hitting analysis I will organize the Braves players into different tiers so we have a good comparison for how much they helped the team this week.
*DISCLAIMER SIREN SOUNDS* Please note that I will be ranking these players using fWAR which includes a defensive component. I am quite aware that saber-defensive stats are iffy to begin with and on a weekly basis basically mean nothing. Thank you, we got it no need to point this out in the comments. *entire comment section devolves into discussion of UZR* NOW ONTO THE RANKINGS!
Chipper Jones Tier
Jason Heyward (0.7 fWAR) – Heyward was everything his fervent disciples (me) have always said he could be over the past week. A 333/429/600 line is a beautiful sight to behold and Heyward continues to be the best defensive player in baseball by all advanced metrics. The Braves best player this week and it wasn’t close.
Fred McGriff Tier
Andrelton Simmons (0.3 fWAR) – A very good week where Andrelton actually tooks some walks (HI THERE 16% walk rate) and of course played stellar defense. More of this please.
Justin Upton (0.2 fWAR) – The good Upton continued his consistently strong campaign this week. His power was slightly diminished with a 130 ISO but when a player gets on base at a .423 rate for a week nothing else really matters. Considering Upton’s history of inconsistency and the way his play so significantly dipped last summer it has been awesome to see Justin put up two straight dominant months. In 2014 Justin Upton is fulfilling his considerable potential. Here’s hoping this is the year he doesn’t suffer that prolonged stretch of inexplicably being bad at everything.
Tommy La Stella (0.2 fWAR) – Tommy La Stella debuted for the Braves this week and was amazing and perfect and our savior. His sexy on base skills (he will have more walks than Chris Johnson before the week is up) are only exceeded by his dreamy eyes and rugged manly stubble. He is here to save us all and your expectations cannot be too high.
Mike Minor (0.2 fWAR) – Minor’s one start this week was the ultimate lol nothing matters game in a week that had a couple of them. Minor was brilliant through seven innings against Boston allowing only one run and walking no batters. Then Minor left and the Barves Barved things up in the most Barvey way possible. Not your fault Mike.
Gerald Laird (0.2 fWAR) – Lard was actually one of the Braves better players this week. This is why I prefaced this article with SMALL SAMPLE SIZE ALERT!!!
Jeff Blauser Tier
Freddie Freeman (0.1 fWAR) – Freeman struggled to get hits this week with a .227 batting average but made up for it with a .393 on base percentage. Fangraphs defensive ratings continue to hate Freeman and a debate as old and worn out as Bob Dylan rages on.
Aaron Harang (0.1 fWAR) – There is really no doubt that Harang continues to be the most shocking performer of 2014. Harang goes out there and gets results despite seemingly middling stuff. The advanced numbers actually like Harang more than traditional stats with a FIP far below his ERA on the season. This suggests Harang has actually been unlucky this year and his results should get better. What a bizarre season.