One of the focuses of the Braves' current rebuilding process is the international market, and if a report from MLB Pipeline is any indication, then the Braves could have a very good international signing period. They're the favorites to land a whopping six of the top 30 international prospects, including Kevin Maitan, who is being described as a once-in-a-generation talent.
Meanwhile, the main reason why the Braves are undergoing this rebuilding process is so that they can have a decent team in place by the time they move to their new stadium in Cobb County. On Thursday afternoon, the Braves held their first-ever media day at the ballpark, which is where they gave the media and select guests a first look at the new stadium. Also, Braves Vice Chairman John Schuerholz shared a bit of information about the dimensions of the new ballpark:
Unlike Turner Field, SunTrust Park will be asymmetrical.
"We decided to make our outfield asymmetrical and the height of our wall changes," Schuerholtz said. "We did it because it will make it more appealing to our fans while giving our players a home field advantage."
Schuerholtz noted he believes SunTrust Park will be a "fair ballpark just like Turner Field."
"If a pitcher makes a bad pitch, the hitter should hit it out and if he makes a good pitch, he can get him out," he said. "I had considerable input on the dimensions of the field, the height of the wall and things like that."
And now it's time to go back to the reality of talking about the current Atlanta Braves. One of the things that's been a major anchor on the Braves this season has been teir lack of power at the plate. They're dead-last in ISO with .065 (for comparison, the Yankees are 29th in baseball with an ISO of .122), and are also dead-last in wRC+ with a paltry number of 56. We all figured that the Braves were not going to be a crew of big boppers, but this is wild.
It's been a tumultuous week for Fredi Gonzalez, as rumors of his termination as Braves manager have been getting louder and louder. Some were even speculating that Fredi could've been fired during the Braves' off-day on Thursday. That didn't happen, but it still seems like it's a matter of time before the Braves let him go. You can add Forbes to the list of media outlets who think it's time for the Braves to make a managerial change.
That all being said, perhaps it would be best for the Braves to part ways with Gonzalez now and have someone like bullpen coach Eddie Perez take over on an interim basis. Though the roster this year is one that was not expected to contend for the postseason by any stretch of the imagination, it’s not like Gonzalez had the team on the verge of greatness throughout his tenure. If anything, his time with Atlanta has been simply average and any success can be attributed to the team getting hot at the right time rather than consistently being competitive as it was under [Bobby] Cox.
During the fifth inning of Colorado's eventual 17-7 beatdown of the Giants, their offense went absolutely crazy. They scored a whopping 13 runs in that inning and completely terrorized Giants pitching.
In all, the inning involved 13 runs on 10 hits, a walk and a hit by pitch for the Rockies with a pair of Giants errors and three San Francisco pitchers used. It took 37 minutes and 45 seconds. The 13 runs the Rockies scored in the inning were the most in franchise history and the most any team had scored in an inning since the Diamondbacks scored 13 in an inning against the Pirates on April 11, 2010.
What made this offensive outburst even more amazing is that this didn't happen at Coors Field -- This happened at AT&T Park. Go figure.
So, the Yankees are pretty bad right now. As I mentioned in the piece about the Braves' lack of power, the Yankees have also been struggling at the plate. Nowhere was this more obvious than on Thursday night, which is when thy wasted a masterful performance on the mound from Masahiro Tanaka. Tanaka struck out seven over eight innings and didn't give up a single run. However, the Yankees failed to score during the entire game, and the O's ended up winning in walk-off fashion.