“Whatever. We’ve Got Yoga.”

I’m starting to feel the pangs of real discouragement for the first time this preseason: Hampton says he’s a no go, despite Bobby’s optimism. I don’t know what scares me more, the idea that Hampton might flake out this season, or the possibility that Bobby’s ability to judge who is capable and who isn’t is fading. Last season sure made it look that way, with the Jordan platoon at first, keeping Pratt around when he might have tried Pena a little earlier, and the Reitsma Reign of Terror that Bobby staunchly supported well into June. If Hampton was an irresponsible jackass like Reitsma and wanted to hide an injury (or discomfort, in this case), we might have been in real trouble until the assassination attempts began around the All-Star break.

Maybe I’m taking Bobby’s ra-ra quotes to the press too literally, but I did notice his willingness to give eighth, tenth, thousandth chances significantly hurting the team last year. At any rate, good for Hampton for admitting when things are not right — I guess. I know pitchers have a tendency to be delicate flowers and sometimes wilt more readily than they need to. There’s really no telling, but either way, this leaves us with only three starting pitchers. Shit. No wonder everyone keeps talking about the bullpen nonstop . . .

Someone finally got a picture of the elusive Rent! They got him while his back was turned, nice.

You can see the remnants of The Stomach here.

What is with the iridescent purple glasses?! Last year Heap had them, now Andruw.

Our prospect Lillibridge, snatched from the Pirates. He’s about twelve years old, looks like.

God, LOOK at Hampton. He’s so hangdog, it’s getting irritating. Maybe it’s legitimate, though, maybe he’s just disappointed that he can’t pitch. But something about his “nope, can’t do it!” attitude seems so smug, I don’t know. Smoltz is so over it he fell asleep.

I hope Heap doesn’t get all cynical like Chipper someday. In the meantime, the contrast in this picture is hilarious. Heap isn’t all “PLEASE LOVE ME!!” with the fans like his pal Frenchy is, but he’s pretty accommodating. Terry has been around the block a few times and he’s still enthusiastic as hell!

This kid is cute — a little too cute. Frenchy, is there something you’re not telling us?

And then they bring out the old man on his little cart so the fans can have a look.

I miss Maddux. This exchange from his recent interview with the AJC had me crying laughing:

Q: What are you thinking today?

A: I’m thinking today, whatever. We’ve got yoga today. So I’m going to go in there and do a little yoga, get all stretched out, then work on the fundamentals and figure out what to do until it gets dark.

Just the idea of Maddog doing the Downward Facing Dog pose makes me feel better about everything. And I can’t wait to hear about how Harrison does in his start against Tech tomorrow. Fun with rookies! Too bad I can’t watch on TV or even listen on the radio . . . around 1:00 I’m going to be going crazy just knowing there is Braves baseball going on somewhere without me.



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