Found August 29, 2013 on
Gattis during his janitorial days. His story started with a bang, literally, homering off the Phillie’s Roy Halladay in his first major league at-bat. Talk about a dream come true, crushing a Doc Halladay pitch over the outfield wall in your first at-bat. Whoa. The homerun ball was caught by a young man wearing a Texas A&M shirt. The irony was not lost on Evan Gattis. From a drug addicted college drop-out (No wait, that’s not right, he can’t drop out if he never showed up to A&M to fulfill his part of a baseball scholarship can he?) to a cook, janitor, ski-lift operator and God knows what else in between, Gattis has lived a lifetime in 26 years. When the rookie steps to the plate at Turner Field in Atlanta, chants of “El Oso Blanco” echo through the stadium. He earned the nickname, which translates to “The White Bear”, while obliterating baseballs in the Mexican winter league. Sometimes, if you look hard enough, you can find bear-shaped hats sprinkled throughout the stands. He’s a fan favorite and marketing department’s dream. Can you say cha-ching? The Braves can. El Oso batted .281 with 12 homeruns and 32 RBI through June 1st. Outstanding numbers for a rookie not many thought would make the club out of spring training. He saw a lot of playing time in April as Brian McCann, the Braves staple behind home plate, was recovering from shoulder surgery. When McCann returned from the DL in May, Gattis was relegated to back-up status, but continued to flourish in a part-time role as a utility outfielder and backup catcher. He has had his fair share of big moments as he leads the league with four pinch-hit homeruns. For a while the guy had a penchant for the big moment berating the field with game winning shots. Then, as is always the case with young hitters, pitchers adjusted while Gattis did not. The catcher has a low crouching stance making it hard to make contact against pitches up and inside. Unfortunately, he also has trouble laying off said pitches. Pitchers have worked this zone hard since June. Gattis has hit just .188 with three homers and 15 RBIs in June, July and August combined. His batting average stands at just .139 since August 1st. Rut-roh! Not good for a guy expected to replace McCann if the Braves can’t re-sign him in the offseason. Plate discipline would definitely help at this point. Laying off pitches you’ve always been able to crush is easier said than done, but Gattis has to do it, or else he may not stick with any big league club much longer. His story is much too good to end now. If El Oso’s life were a movie, hopefully this is the climactic point where he bust out of the three month slump with a barrage of dingers over the left field seats, shattering a scoreboard light or two. Gattis has the talent to succeed, he has shown that. Now, he must prove he can make the necessary adjustments as pitchers have done to him. He has an innovative hitting coach in Greg Walker and he’s been through worse . . . much, much worse. But for the Braves, with mounting injuries and a host of hungry playoffs team waiting for them come October, the sooner the better.
BEST OF MAXIM
It looks like Dan Uggla may be back in the Braves lineup Wednesday when the Braves take on the Indians in the second of a three game set.
“We’ll check with him this evening, but I think he’ll be here tomorrow,” Gonzalez said after Tuesday night’s 2-0 win against the Indians. “He got seven at-bats the last two days. His timing is getting better and better, so hopefully...
FOXSportsSouth.com checks in with play-by-play analyst Chip Caray to get the latest on the Braves.
FOX SPORTS SOUTH: Alex Wood is 3-0 with a 1.46 ERA in his past six starts and he has a 1.88 ERA at home. Have you been surprised by his smooth transition, thus far, into the majors?
CHIP CARAY: He's obviously a highly touted prospect. If you're picked in the second round the...
ATLANTA -- Chris Johnson's mindset was simple.
"You go up there thinking, 'Alright, you want me, you got me,'" he said.
The Indians' Joe Smith walked All-Star Freddie Freeman with one on, two outs and the score tied 2-2 in the bottom of the ninth Wednesday at Turner Field to get to Johnson.
Hitless in his first four plate appearances, Johnson was down...
Yeah, this is pretty funny if you are a Sports fan. Assuming you know who Elliot Johnson is anyway.
The Atlanta Braves second baseman was the star of Tuesday nights 2-0 win when he hit a 2-run triple in the 3rd inning providing the Braves with all the runs they'd need to win the game.
Then there is this.
After the game, Fox Sports South Braves reporter...
There is a chance Brandon Beachy will pitch again this year for the Atlanta Braves. The young pitcher coming off Tommy John surgery began feeling forearm discomfort resulting in him being shut down and sent off to see Dr. James Andrews. Fortunately, there is no structural damage in Beachy's elbow, and his prognosis looks good.
According to Carrol Rogers of the Atlanta...
Outfielder Justin Upton is day to day after being struck on left hand by a pitch during Atlanta's game against Cleveland.
Upton was plunked with a 92-mph fastball from Ubaldo Jimenez that rode into the hitter in the fifth inning with the Braves leading 3-0 Thursday night.
The training staff immediately ran out to check on Upton, who looked as though he would stay in the game...
ATLANTA The Atlanta Braves continued their winning ways at home with a 2-1 win in a pitching duel that included two rookies and six relievers. Here are three observations from Atlanta's MLB-leading 82nd win of the season:
1. The Fernandez-Teheran was an odd pitching duel that still produced the expected results
When Jordan Schafer stepped into the box for the first time Friday...
Last night, Paul Maholm started the 238th game of his career, twirling six one-run innings on the way to a 3-2 Braves victory. You may not realize it — perhaps because you didn’t realize that he’s from Mississippi, or don’t spend a great deal of time thinking about Paul Maholm — but Paul Maholm has the […]
Brian McCann hit a three-run homer, Kris Medlen pitched seven scoreless innings and the Atlanta Braves completed a sweep of the Cleveland Indians with a 3-1 victory Thursday night.
McCann went deep in the third after Justin Upton kept the inning going with a two-out single. Upton had to leave the game in the sixth after being struck on the left hand by a pitch, but X-rays were negative...
The Atlanta Braves have activated second baseman Dan Uggla from
the disabled list, two weeks after he underwent eye surgery.
When the Atlanta Braves acquired Elliot Johnson, my guess is that they never expected the light hitting second baseman to do more than provide some relief to their current crop of infielders.
However...dude is quickly becoming the "go to" guy when it comes to interviews.
Over the weekend, the former Kansas City Royal did his best impersonation of Will Ferrell'...
Julio Teheran said he took the mound with one goal: ''Show everybody what I can do.''
Teheran showed he can beat Jose Fernandez, the Marlins' young star who ranks third in the majors with his 2.33 ERA.
Freddie Freeman hit a two-run homer in the first inning, Teheran outpitched Fernandez in a matchup of young right-handers, and the Atlanta Braves beat Miami 2...
Rome 14, Savannah 1
Every starter in the Rome Braves’ lineup had at least one hit and top pitching prospect Lucas Sims went five innings to notch his 11th win in a 14-1 rout of the Savannah Sand Gnats on Tuesday night.
It was the largest margin of defeat for the Gnats this season, topping the 11-run deficit to Augusta in an 11-0 loss on May 17.
Savannah (72-58) has lost six of...
Tuesday night, Atlanta Braves infielder Elliot Johnson went all NASCAR during a postgame interview. Not to be outdone, Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond channeled "Talledega Nights".
Yup, dude autographed a baby.
Absolutely ma'm...I'd love to sign your baby.