The 20 worst A-Braves players: #8 Craig Robinson

The Braves of the 1970s had a peculiar habit of trading for players they once discarded. Pitcher Adrian Devine, for example, was traded to Texas in 1976 then reacquired the following winter. Two years later, he was traded back to Texas. Coming to Atlanta in that last deal were Doyle Alexander and Larvell Blanks, who had two tours apiece with the Braves.

Craig Robinson was acquired from the Phillies prior to the 1974 season and was immediately christened as the starting SS despite an undistinguished minor league career. Robinson, who finished April with a .183 BA and slugging percentage, didn’t get his first double until June. He was a singles hitter who didn’t hit many singles, collecting but four doubles in 452 AB.

Robinson saved his worst for the home folks, batting .187 at Fulco with a .212 slugging percentage — numbers that would embarrass many pitchers. He wasn’t much better defensively, committing 29 errors in 138 games.

Robinson was traded to the Giants in June 1975. A year later, he was back in Atlanta, acquired along with Willie Montanez in the ill-fated Darrell Evans deal. He’d appear in 42 games over the next two seasons, finishing his Braves career with a .223 BA and .531 OPS.


4 thoughts on “The 20 worst A-Braves players: #8 Craig Robinson

  1. Real juggernaut of a front office there. FW has made his share of questionable moves, but in total hasn’t committed the number of howlers we used to pull off in a single offseason.

  2. Craig Robinson’s error total wasn’t too bad when one considers how awful the infield dirt and grass were back then. The 1973 Braves were just about the best hitting Braves team I ever saw, but their fielding and poor bullpen lost a lot of games. With Robinson at short and Marty Perez at second base, the 1974 Braves were markedly improved on defense and won 88 games (versus 76 or so in 1973) in a very tough division. Later in the 1970’s, I saw Craig working as a camera man for Channel 17 (WTCG, later WTBS). Craig’s acquisition from Philadelphia was absolute genius compared to the acquisition of pitcher Barry Lersch. Barry had one respectable season on a poor Phillies team, but subsequently had knee surgery and was done. The story I heard was that the Braves filled out the paper work incorrectly, putting “Lersch” instead of “Lerch” (pitcher Randy Lerch), who they meant to acquire. I saw Lersch warm-up in the Braves bullpen one time, but I don’t believe he ever got into a game.

  3. Disagree. The 1974 team was the best Braves team of the 70s. Would have made the post season except for being placed in the West Division. Robinson was more a plus to the team than a negative. Team stat leaders: Runs Scored-5th – Triples-2nd – Stolen Bases-3rd (behind Ralph Garr and Dusty Baker-but had a better base stealing % than either of them) – Sacrifice Hits-1st. He was not the best defensive player in the league but far from the worst.

    “…batting .187 at Fulco…”

    But batted .264 on the road.

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