Braves Exercise 2014 Option For Manager Fredi Gonzalez

Thursday, December 6, 2012
Fredi Gonzalez
Fredi Gonzalez
- photo by Tim Evearitt

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Braves announced on Wednesday at the Winter Meetings that they have exercised Gonzalez's contract option for the 2014 season. This provides the 48-year-old manager a vote of confidence and a chance to prepare for this upcoming season with a little more certainty about his future.

Gonzalez's tenure as the Braves' manager began in disappointing fashion as Atlanta blew the 9 1/2-game Wild Card lead it carried into September of the 2011 season.

But Gonzalez showed his leadership skills and silenced some of his critics this year as the Braves distanced themselves from this disastrous finish and completed a 94-win season, the club's highest win total since 2004. The team's journey into the postseason proved short as it lost a one-game Wild Card playoff against the Cardinals.

As Gonzalez looks toward the 2014 season, he is tasked with the responsibility of guiding Atlanta through the early stages of the post-Chipper Jones era.

With Jones retired and both David Ross and Eric Hinske playing elsewhere, the Braves will gain some new leaders next year. Tim Hudson has capably filled this role over the past few years and Dan Uggla is certainly capable of assuming more of a leadership role as he prepares for his third season in Atlanta.

And there is also certainly a chance that some of the leadership will be assumed by Martin Prado, who has spent the past few years establishing himself as one of the most respected members of Atlanta's clubhouse.

While the Braves are still exploring the possibility of acquiring a leadoff hitter, Gonzalez admits that he has spent the past week debating how to position his lineup with the recently signed outfielder B.J. Upton, who has the potential to provide both speed and power.

Instead of targeting Upton, Uggla, Jason Heyward, Freddie Freeman and Brian McCann for specific spots in his lineup, Gonzalez said he is looking forward to putting together a lineup that includes this kind of power potential.

As Gonzalez looks at a potentially deep lineup and what appears to be a solid pitching staff, he is optimistic that the Braves can build upon this past season's success and return to the postseason.

--- Source: MLB.com


UTC's McLean Set For Suns Summer League Squad

From the moment Tre McLean ’16 walked on campus in 2013, he brought a through-the-roof work ethic. That work leads to his next step heading to Las Vegas joining the Phoenix Suns in the NBA Summer League. McLean transferred to Chattanooga in 2013 from Queens University of Charlotte after his freshman year. He followed his head coach Wes Long from Charlotte to Gig City when current ... (click for more)

Georgia Northwestern Bobcats Sign Howard Hoops Standout

The Georgia Northwestern Lady Bobcats volleyball team and basketball team have picked up recruits from the Chattanooga area this season and the men’s basketball team recently decided to follow suit. Head coach David Stephenson crossed into the Volunteer State in late June to sign guard Justin Smith. Smith prepped at Howard High School, which has always been a hotbed for ... (click for more)

Young Woman Suffers Serious Injuries In 30-Foot Fall At Quarry At Greenway Farms

A young woman was seriously injured on Wednesday night  when she fell approximately 30 feet from a bluff at the the Greenway Farms quarry in Hixson.   Some kayakers were paddling in the quarry shortly after  8 p.m. when they saw the woman fall to the ground below. They immediately went over to the victim and called 911. The Chattanooga Fire Department ... (click for more)

Walker County Taking Out Another Loan To Deal With Debts Left By Bebe Heiskell Administration

Walker County officials said they are having to take out another loan to deal with debts left by the Bebe Heiskell administration. Commissioner Shannon Whitfield has called a special meeting for Thursday at 2 p.m. at the commissioner's office in Lafayette. The agenda includes a $4 million tax anticipation note from Lafayette Bank, which stepped in to help the new administration ... (click for more)

CPS Should Have A Manned 24/7 Presence In Every County

This week something became abundantly clear to me. The Department of Child Protective Services in the state of Tennessee, or at least in Hamilton County, are asleep at the wheel.   Early yesterday afternoon local news stations broke the news: "Animals Removed from Soddy Daisy Home."  What the news station either didn't know, or didn't report, was that the children of ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Heroes Gather On July 14

Oliver North, whose journey as American patriot has not been an easy one, never lost hope. He once admitted he lied to Congress under oath, was found guilty of three felony counts after he followed the direct orders of his superiors, and then endured the wrath of the ignorant before the ACLU – of all sources – had the charges vacated. The former Lt. Colonel in the Marine Corps ... (click for more)