Recalling another winter of discontent

I think we all agree this offseason has generally sucked, as we’ve watched the Braves stand pat and learned that the local nine’s descent into small marketdom has been assured by the bean counters at TimeWarner.

But the winter of 2003-’04 was pretty glum, too — a preview of the malaise to come.

In a span of four days in December the Braves said goodbye to Greg Maddux and Adam Wainwright and hello to John Thomson and J.D. Drew.

Two years later Wainwright was closing for the world champion Cards, Just Disabled was looking to opt out of his Dodgers contract and JT was finishing his last season as a Brave. He won 2 games, lost 7 and didn’t seem to give a shit.

Payroll constraints, coupled with uncharacteristic shortsightedness by JS, cost the Braves dearly as the decade wore down. FW, at least, has not been myopic this offseason.

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9 Comments on Recalling another winter of discontent

  1. Winter of 2003-04 was the Winter of Shame for the Braves. Will NEVER forgive them for letting Maddux go without even offering a contract. I still believe he would have stayed had they only made an offer. We were denied the opportunity to watch as Maddux won his 300th game, recorded his 3,000 strikeout in a BRAVES uniiform. Shame on the Braves.

  2. I’m also pissed off that Maddux is now a roving pitching instructor for the Rangers, a team for which he never played (although his brother is the team’s pitching coach). He should have had a standing offer to join the Braves in a similar capacity, but I guess not under this cheap-ass regime.

  3. Jack Straw // February 4, 2012 at 11:47 pm //

    The old saw is sometimes the best deal is one you didn’t make. We open the season with JJ and Prado still wearing tomahawks.
    We have no significant holes. We need our pitchers and Brian McCann to stay healthy, and we need J-Hey to hit. That’s not too much to ask.

  4. I’m with you Tok. If I had my way Mad Dog would be the Braves mgr. No doubt in my mind he’d be a good one.

  5. PepeFreeUs // February 5, 2012 at 1:15 am //

    I take solace in the fact that he’s no longer with the Cubs.

    And Jack’s right about our outlook. We’ve got all the tools we need, we just need to make sure they’re all in working order.

  6. If this team goes down the shitter like last year, we can take comfort while spitting bile into our dippin’ dots cups that we only paid half-price on the concessions.

    Get me another Coors and a funnel cake!

  7. We’re definitely not a bad team, as Jack says. Looking at our batting lineup, we’ve got:

    1. Bourn
    2. Prado?
    3. Chipper
    4. Uggla
    5. McCann
    6. Freeman
    7. Heyward
    8. Pastornicky

    (any order there would work, really – Pastornicky is the only unknown)

    Not a bad lineup at all if everyone pulls their weight like we would expect them to. Biggest question mark is whether Chipper can stay healthy. Then, will Heyward pick it up this year, and will Freeman avoid a sophomore slump?

    Combine the offense with a solid pitching rotation and our team should consistently win.

    Agree that we haven’t made any moves that have generated any excitement. But, as long as Pastornicky doesn’t completely bomb and everyone else plays to their ability, I see no reason why the Braves won’t be contending for the NL East crown come September.

  8. Jack Straw // February 5, 2012 at 11:23 pm //

    I think we can win with Wilson at shortstop. He has good hands and he is a smart baseball player. If he hits .235 that’s good enough. Of course, the left side of our infield would be about 100 years old.

    I wouldn’t hold my breath on the rookie. Big league shortstop is tough.

  9. rankin' rob // February 6, 2012 at 8:45 am //

    No one is factoring in any injuries. Can we succeed if Hinske or Diaz have to step in and start 100 games? Hopefully FW has a couple of Spring Training deals in his trick bag.

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