I was leaving Marlins Park late Monday night when one of security guards who’s been with the team quite a while said to me, “Well, at least we don’t have to worry about facing Chipper tomorrow.” When I asked what he meant, he said, “He’s retired. He used to kill the Marlins.” Then I mentioned Braves newcomer Justin Upton, who had just gone 4-for-4 with a homer and scored both runs in Monday’s 2-0 series-opening win. “Yeah, that’s true,” the security guard said. “He killed us in the past, too.” Upton, the player whom Braves fans are very happy Arizona GM Kevin Towers was so eager to get rid of, has hit .409 (45-for-110) in his past 27 games against the Marlins with four triples, seven homers, 25 RBIs and a .709 slugging percentage. And let’s just say the Marlins are not catching him at a good time if they hoped to reverse that trend. Upton’s home run Monday gave him an astounding six in his first seven games for the Braves, and his 4-for-4 night raised his average to .423, ninth-best in the majors. Among the rest of the top 10, only one other has as many as three homers. Upton lead the majors in home runs, OPS (1.641) and slugging percentage (1.192). The guy by himself has more home runs than 13 major league teams. In his past 30 regular-season games, going back to Sept. 8, Upton has hit .357 (41-for-115) with 11 homers, 20 RBIs, 11 walks, 25 strikeouts and a .406 OBP and .722 slugging percentage. And the Braves got him in January with three seasons remaing (including this one) on a reasonable contract.
Braves J-Up searing, J-Hey scuffling
Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Apr 10