By “one man to blame” – I place absolutely no blame on Fredi Gonzalez for how the 2016 Braves are performing and simply mean that the executives of the organization feel some mythical pressure to show the fan base that they will “not accept losing.” Many people seem to forget this team won 94 games in 2012 and 96 games in 2013. That 2013 team included B.J. Upton and Dan Uggla, who combined for almost 1000 plate appearances, and boasted a combined batting average of .181 (are you shitting me?). Our third and fourth starters the second half of that year were Paul Maholm and Freddy Garcia. I would have to say that it is one of the most underrated managerial performances in recent memory to have had that group of clowns even in the hunt, but when you lose the way the Braves have for the past 18 months somebody is going to get fired.
We live in a day and age where you either produce, or you’re out. Fredi certainly produced in his early seasons as Braves manager, but has somehow had trouble replicating and building on that success over the last two years. Could it be because we traded away the greatest defensive shortstop ever for another prospect? Could it be because Frank Wren left Jon Hart with an Ethiopian cupboard of a farm system? Could it be because there is no god and the Braves are destined to float aimlessly through the vacuum of mediocrity forever? I don’t know, I’m not Columbo. What I do know is that this organization is in complete overhaul mode and with no chance of relevance for at least two years…fuck it, why not find a new manager to bring us into Suntrust Park?
The rumors are that Fredi may not last the weekend and I am absolutely indifferent. Its baseball, you make maybe three decisions a game and try to make sure that Josh Beckett isn’t getting lubed up on Busch Lights in the locker room during a game…and that’s about it. The early rumors are that Bud Black has a very strong relationship with current Braves president Jon Hart and is the top candidate to replace Fredi when he is gone. Ol’ Bud has certainly proven that he can coach a shitty team after his last stint with the Padres saw him have two winning seasons in seven years, so I guess it makes sense. The point is that I will not care who coaches this team for the next two years. The Braves are definitely going somewhere, but they aren’t getting there any time soon.