Mac’s Five Questions

Mac Thomason asks and answers five questions about the 2006 Braves for The Hardball Times. As always, Mac does a good job of covering everything. Good work, Mac; and congrtulatons for catching John Schuerholz’s attention.

I am more scared this year about the Braves than I have been since I was in high school. I’m not so worried about the offense—unless Brian Jordan makes the team—but the pitching situation is very uncertain. The top three starters—Smoltz, Hudson, and Thomson—are injury risks. Horacio Ramirez and Jorge Sosa are Horacio Ramirez and Jorge Sosa. Kyle Davies looks good, but he is still young. When you get to the pen, the starting rotation looks great. Chris Reitsma is really the only solid reliever, who will probably close. I think we’ll be seeing a lot of innings from Lance Cormier. Is Joey Devine ready? Will Chuck James make the roster? And then a half-a-dozen guys are injured. Oh yeah, and no Leo Mazzone this year.

4 Responses “Mac’s Five Questions”

  1. Rich Lederer says:

    Horacio Ramirez

    I like that, JC.

  2. Mike Fields says:

    JC, this is the first year I’ve been legitimately worried about the Braves as well. I don’t know if you saw this, but Buster Olney wrote about Horacio Ramirez in his blog today. Olney wrote, “If the Braves are going to win, they’ll do it with depth in their rotation, and he (HRam) could give it to them.” Granted this isn’t a writer from BP or Hardball Times, but I would expect an ESPN baseball writer to have at least some knowledge about baseball.

  3. Rich Lederer says:

    “If the Braves are going to win, they’ll do it with depth in their rotation, and he (HRam) could give it to them.”

    Note the “if” and “could” conditions in that statement. Talk about hedging your bet?

    Ramirez had the lowest strikeout per pitch ratio in MLB last year. Pitchers who give up lots of homers and don’t strike out batters have almost zero chance of being effective.

    I’m betting the don’ts.

  4. Mac Thomason says:

    What’s fun about HomeRam is that he spent the first two years of his career getting results that were a lot better than his peripherals and we all said it wasn’t sustainable. So last year his results fell back to the level of his peripherals, only the peripherals fell too; a pitcher with his 2005 stats shouldn’t be able to stay in the majors. We’ll see. He’s still lefthanded.