Worse than Corky

Dan Uggla in his last 36 games: 10-for-101 (.099), 1 XBH, 4 RBI, 23 BB, 40 K, .287 OBP, .129 slugging

Corky Miller, in 43 games as a Brave: 12-for-87 (.138), 4 XBH, 9 RBI, 6 BB, 20 K, .200 OPB, .230 slugging

DOB says the decision to carry Uggla on the postseason roster has been a “difficult one” for the Braves. How so? At least Janish (defense) and B.J. (speed) have a skill. At this point, Uggla has none.

And where are the stat geeks who told us that Uggla has outperformed his contract?

andres

The 20 worst A-Braves players: #1 Andres Thomas

It was difficult omitting Corky Miller, who had 5 hits as B-Mac’s back-up in 2008 and batted .138 in 87 AB’s as a Brave.¬†But how do you exclude Andres Thomas, the 7th SS to make our register? (Go here for the complete list.)

Stat awareness works for and against Andres, a Brave from 1985-90. I was a kid when he played, back when hitters were measured solely by batting average, homers and RBI. For infielders like Andres, it was all about errors, and he made a ton. Andres led all shortstops in errors in 1988 and was the runner-up in ’89. In ’87 he was charged with 20 errors despite appearing in only 82 games. Not good, though not as bad as it appeared at the time, as Andres ranked tops in range factor among all shortstops in ’87 and in the top 5 the next two seasons.

Conversely, Andres was generally thought of as productive bat for a SS. In the days before ‘roids became so widespread a .252-13-68 line, Andres’ line in ’88, looked pretty good. There were persistent rumblings of a Thomas for Barry Bonds swap back then, though I can’t imagine Pittsburgh ever seriously pondered it.

Andres was the anti-Bonds when it came to OBP, a basic stat today but one that was largely ignored in the ’80s. Good thing for Andres, because his was disproportionately awful.

He walked 59 times in 6 years with the Braves. Freddie, Uggla and Bourn each accrued more bases on balls in 2012. Andres was consistent, at least, never walking more than 14 times in a season, which explains his career .255 OBP, lower even than fellow 20 worsters Pat Rockett and Luis Gomez. His lifetime offensive WAR was -3.9 may not mean much until you compare it to those of Jason Bay and Jeff Francoeur, who in 2012 ranked near the bottom of the league with -0.8 and -1.2, respectively.

Andres, who had become the face off the franchise’s low point in Atlanta, was released following the 1990 season. His departure and the glory days that followed were no coincidence.

 

erniewhitt

The 20 worst A-Braves players: #14 Ernie Whitt

Guarantees always backfired when made by a member of the pre-’91 Braves. Chuck Tanner once promised a parade down Peachtree. When he was fired, maybe.

After he was acquired from the Blue Jays for assorted flotsam, Ernie Whitt told the local organ that Toronto GM Pat Gillick would regret the trade.

“They got caught up in my being 37 years old, ” claimed Whitt, who expects to catch 130 games (in 1990). “You don’t look at age; you look at production. I’m going to drive in 70 runs, hit my 15 home runs and hit .260. You can go to the bank on it.”

Good thing he was wrong about the 130 games. The 67 he appeared in were bad enough.

Whitt likewise fell short on his other predictions, finishing with a .172 BA, 2 HR and 10 RBI.

At least he was consistent.

(batting average)

  • HOME: .162
  • ROAD: .183
  • FIRST HALF: .169
  • SECOND HALF: .174
  • RISP: .134
  • BASES EMPTY: .183

Whitt saved his worst for two-out situations, finishing just above the Corky Miller line, at .103.

But he was a good backstop, right?

Not on Aug. 30.

(via the local organ)

Hardly a speed team, the Dodgers took a 4-2 lead on Kirk Gibson’s two-run homer and by working over catcher Ernie Whitt for a season-high five stolen bases, including two double steals, in the first four innings.

Whitt’s Braves career would be over two months later. After signing with the Orioles he guaranteed he’d hit at least .180.

The 20 worst A-Braves (non-pitcher edition)

Best/worst lists are not beneath the Office. We’ve plumbed these depths many times before.

Surprisingly, we’ve never counted down the all-time worst Braves.

Here’s a partial list of contenders (non-pitchers only). I’ve left out too many to count, so your nominations are welcome.

  • Damaso Garcia
  • Corky Miller
  • Ken Caminiti
  • Greg Norton
  • Pat Rockett
  • Melky Cabrera
  • Matt Young
  • Julio Lugo
  • Chris Woodward
  • Mike Hessman
  • Rey Sanchez
  • Jordan Schafer
  • Jody Davis

It’s a long offseason.