Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz

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In Defense of Dan Uggla

There are few fan bases more snarky, hateful and full of front runners than the Braves. All you have to do is take a continuing look at Dan Uggla and the hate directed his way to see what I mean. I'm not saying that those who have been disappointed with his performance haven't had reason. You simply can't make an argument that he's lived up to his contract. I don't deny that.

One thing these fans need is a little perspective. Over and over again he's referred to as the worst second baseman in baseball. He isn't. It isn't even close. That's not a judgment call. When you say he's the worst, you are being factually incorrect. I would argue that during his time with the Braves, he's been among the top 5 second baseman in the NL, and FanGraphs would back me up on that. That doesn't make him great and it doesn't mean he's lived up to the expectations we all had when he signed the contract, but it doesn't make him awful. In fact, you cold argue he's been solid.

Of course, his performance has nothing to do with why I like Uggla so much. I like him because from day one he's busted his ass to live up to that contract. Nobody can argue that he doesn't leave it all on the field every single game. Yesterday, he had a bad game at the plate, but it was his and Paul Janish's hustle that won the game for the Braves in the 12th.

That's nine wins in a row for the Braves. Their 66 wins ties them for second best in all of baseball. They have a double digit lead for first place in their division. Still, Braves fans are going to hate. They are going to hate BJ Upton, they are going to hate Jason Heyward, and they are going to continue to hate Dan Uggla. That's just who they are.

Me? I think they should just go screw themselves.

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