The time has come for the Atlanta Braves to give up on B.J. Upton. The outfielder has been terrible ever since joining the team a season ago, and enough is enough if you ask me. He showed some promising signs when he switched over to some prescription glasses about a month ago, but lately he’s been falling back into old habits and now it’s starting to hurt the team.
Atlanta’s offense has been awful for quite some time, which means manager Fredi Gonzalez has to start making changes if this team wants to get back on track. His first move should be easy, too. Upton has to be the first player to take a seat on the bench because of his struggles at the plate. Recently, he’s been more of a burden every time he steps into the batter’s box instead of an asset. How many times do Braves fans have to watch this guy not come through in the clutch? It seems like all he does is strikeout whenever he has a chance to either get on base or produce a timely hit.
Today provided the perfect example of Upton’s recent struggles. Against the St. Louis Cardinals, he went an abysmal 0-for-4 at the plate with a whopping four strikeouts. I know players can’t be expected to perform well every single game, but this kind of effort from Upton was just terrible. For a player who is fighting to stay in the lineup, you have to be better than that — no excuses. You can’t go up to the plate and strike out four times. For this reason, I think it’s time for Gonzalez to give up on Upton and bench him.
If this were one bad game from the outfielder, it would be a different story, but these kind of performances have been happening for a long time. Upton has already recorded 26 strikeouts this month and it’s only May 17th. For the whole month of April, he had 28 strikeouts total. However, what’s even worse than his strikeout total is his batting average. He’s second to last on the team behind Dan Uggla, who has already seen the bench, with a .203 average. Make the move Gonzalez, Upton is done in a Braves’ uniform.