Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 9/5/12
ATLANTA -- There was a time, not too long ago, when I thought Brian McCann would be the next face of the Braves. In my mind, he was the only candidate to replace Chipper Jones as the heart and soul of the franchise. He would be the guy in the commercials and doing the video announcements at Turner Field and spending his entire career in the familiar uniform. Who would be a better choice? It seemed a perfect and logical succession from Jones to McCann. Hes a native Atlantan who was drafted and reared by his hometown team. He is laid back and a hard worker and is respected by his teammates, especially the pitchers, for his ability to call a game. McCann has provided plenty of pop and circumstance in his seven-plus years with a tomahawk on his chest, going to six All-Star games and winning five Silver Slugger awards while becoming one of the best hitting catchers of his generation. No one else had those credentials. No one else fit the part. Even Jones seemed ready to anoint McCann in spring training, after announcing that his career was done at the end of 2012. Hes going to solely be the face of this franchise, starting next year, Jones told the Macon (Ga.) Telegraph before the season. Hes a great kid. Hes a great ballplayer. Hes the kind of guy youd want to build a ballclub around. Now, Im not so sure. In fact, Im not even 100 percent positive that McCann will be a Brave next season, although the percentage still remains high that hell return in 2013. We need to face the facts: McCann isnt the hitter that he once was, and might never be again. Hell be 29 in February, but hes having his second straight subpar year, with career worst marks in average (.228), home runs (18) and RBIs (58). Hes battling a bum right shoulder and intimated he might need offseason surgery. Its required a cortisone shot and some time on the bench in the past couple of weeks, but McCann is scheduled to return to the lineup on Wednesday after sitting out the past two games. Offensively, hes done little to prove he belongs. McCann is hitting .208 with five home runs since the All-Star break. Power? What power? He hit half of his home runs in July and hasnt hit a ball over an outfield wall since the final day of that month. McCann hit .181 with two RBIs in August and went hitless in his only game this month. He hasnt even sniffed a double (or a triple, for that matter) in 35 days. I once thought the Braves would face the dilemma of having to resign McCann for mega bucks after St. Louis gave catcher Yadier Molina his huge deal, a five-year, 75 million extension earlier this season. McCann is making 11.5 million this year, a total that will rise to 12 million in 2013 if the club picks up its option. Instead of resigning him, the Braves might now need to shop McCann around the majors this winter, but what could they get for what appears to be a catcher on the decline with a hefty salary? An AL team or three say the Yankees or Rangers or Angels with a stack of cash stashed under the mattress and a need for a left-handed hitting catcherDH could have interest. The Braves most likely will try to fix his shoulder or oblique or his eyes or whatever else is bothering McCann and bring him back next year. He continues to be a strong clubhouse presence. Hes jovial with his teammates, keeping them loose with his jokes and presence in the lineup. McCann also seems perplexed by his poor numbers this season and was hesitant to say too much when he talked about it last week. His future with the Braves once seemed a lock. Now its an open door of possibilities. Hes gone from the next face of this franchise to the potential of wearing the uniform of another one as early as next year. We must face the reality. McCanns time in Atlanta might soon be done.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Jerry Jones happy Tony Romo isn’t playing for another NFL team

Pitcher admits facing Tim Tebow is intimidating

Alfred Blue’s car discovered in Louisiana swamp

George told teammates he has dreamed of playing for Lakers?

Westbrook takes shot at Rockets for laughing at Roberson

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Adrian Peterson, Saints 'closing in on a deal'

Richard Sherman shows up for voluntary workouts

Jabrill Peppers the latest star to test positive for diluted sample

NFL draft prospect loses father to accidental shooting

DeMarcus Ware officially retires as member of Cowboys

Jake Long announces NFL retirement after nine seasons

NBA Weekend Awards: Who takes home the Wilt Chamberlain Trophy?

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Where it went wrong: Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 1 exits

20 of the best NFL Draft red carpet looks

Getaway Day: Wild, wacky and weird week in MLB (and that's just the injuries)

11 names you need to know for the NFL Draft

Most inspirational sports movies, series and docs available for streaming

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Best of Yardbarker: David Fizdale and the Grizzlies won't go down quietly

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

NBA Weekend Awards: Who takes home the Wilt Chamberlain Trophy?

Everything you need for the 2017 NFL Draft

Where it went wrong: Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 1 exits

Getaway Day: Wild, wacky and weird week in MLB

11 names you need to know for the NFL Draft

Most inspirational sports movies, series and docs available for streaming

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker