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Chipper Jones: An oral history

22 people reflect on the life and times of a legendary Brave



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B.B. Abbott: I will tell you over the last couple of years I think there have been times where Chipper, at least in his mind, has been done. Whether it be frustrations with injuries, whether it be frustrations with how things were going during the course of the season, whether it be frustrations with being away from his family.

Jim Powell: If he decided he wanted to play until he was 45, I bet you he could find a way to be productive, but the fact that ... He's walking away from the game when he can still play and still on top. That's just another part of his legend.

Joe Simpson: At age 40, I'm still in constant admiration of what he's doing, going out on such a high note. I don't know how many 40-year-olds not only have put together this type of year, but bat third or fourth in the lineup every night that he's in there, too.

Ricky Nolasco: I think he could still play for another five years if he wanted to in the American League and DH, but it would never be the same. He wouldn't look right in any other uniform other than the Atlanta Braves one.

Final Words

Chip Caray: I've said it a million times on our broadcast: what I love best about baseball is watching young men come to the major leagues — or I should say I love watching boys come to the major leagues and become young men, become married, have children and grow into old men, retire and stay in the game or move on.

Tom Glavine: I foresee him being back in the game. He's one of those guys is termed "the baseballer" — he's a lifer.

B.B. Abbott: I don't see Chipper getting away from the game of baseball. Keep in mind that this is all he's known since he was 18 years old, graduating from high school. This is all he's known for the last 22, 23 years and I don't see it getting out of his system.

Liván Hernández: Maybe he'll work for the Atlanta Braves as an assistant or general manager? He knows about the game, maybe he'll be a hitting coach one day. He'll be great, for any team to get Chipper Jones.

Ron Gant: I believe that he would be very valuable to an organization as far as a consultant or being in the front office or helping out with a major league team.

David O'Brien: Chipper would make a terrific hitting coach, and will. I'm sure he'll come back. It's just a matter of time.

Brian McCann: I think he's one of the biggest sports icons in Atlanta sports ... of all time. I think he's one of the biggest figures in Atlanta sports. You're not going to replace that.

David O'Brien: Aaron's the greatest Brave, period, end of story, but you could certainly argue that Chipper's the best Atlanta Brave because he's spent so many more years here than Hank did.

Don Baylor: He gave that organization a lot of that, like when Frank Robinson came to Baltimore — winning type of thing. That's how Chipper played.

Ricky Nolasco: All those guys, his teammates, should be honored to play with a guy like that. I'm just honored to step on the field with a guy like that and compete against him.

David O'Brien: I don't think he will have any problems going first ballot [to the Hall of Fame].

John Schuerholz: I can name about four guys in my 47 years of baseball that I'd put in the category of where he is. They don't come along very often, and so you can't assume you're going to be able to replace that because you can't — unless you're fortunate enough to draft another Chipper Jones or George Brett or Cal Ripken or Derek Jeter.

Chip Caray: It's so rare in this day and age to see a player play his whole career for an organization and play it well. To see him get the standing ovation that I know he'll get, I think will be, really frankly, the turning of a final page in a dynasty we may never see happen again in professional sports. It'll be a bittersweet day.

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