At long last the first Spring Training game is today at 1:05pm for the Atlanta Braves. Freddie Garcia gets the start for Atlanta. The original Braves lineup is one that Fredi Gonzalez would probably “like” to use on opening day… if “some people” are up for it: (1) Heyward, (2) B.J., (3) Freeman, (4) Gattis, (5) Justin, (6) Johnson, (7) Uggla, (8) Simmons. Perhaps some wishful thinking, but the first game of spring is the time for wishful thinking. Apparently Justin Upton was scratched from the lineup with a sore right side, not believed to be serious.
Speaking of Opening Days: A petition has been started to make Baseball’s Opening Day a US National Holiday. Go here to sign the petition, it only takes a minute.
Lopez and Maranville to Hall: The Braves announced their 2014 Hall of Fame inductees yesterday. Former All-Star catcher Javy Lopez, along with former head athletic trainer Dave Pursley and former Boston Braves shortstop Rabbit Maranville, will be inducted into the Braves Hall of Fame on May 23 at the 755 Club at Turner Field. Good to see Javy getting inducted. Also, I suppose, good to see the Braves pay homage to an older player like Maranville. He’s already in the Baseball Hall of Fame, so I’m actually surprised he’s not in the Braves HoF yet. Maranville is pictured on the left, Javy at the top right — apparently a cool pose on the dugout bench never goes out of style. Meanwhile, the Braves blog Tomahawk Take asks why Leo Mazzone is not in the Braves HoF yet.
More Hart: Baseball Prospectus did a Q&A with Braves special assistant John Hart. It’s a nice Q&A and worth checking out.
The last top-10: Baseball Prospectus also has their Braves top-10 prospects list up. It should be the final list we get this year, as every other outlet has released theirs.
- RHP Lucas Sims
- C Christian Bethancourt
- RHP Mauricio Cabrera
- RHP J.R. Graham
- SS Jose Peraza
- 2B Tommy La Stella
- RHP Wes Parsons
- 3B Victor Caratini
- RHP Jason Hursh
- OF Victor Reyes
It’s a good list, and there’s not too much I disagree with. One thing that surprised me is the ranking of Parsons ahead of Hursh. I’m a fan of Parsons, but I’d like to see him at a higher level before pushing him up my list. I also continue to think people are overrating Bethancourt and Cabrera.
More bobbles: I’ve been collecting the dates for the bobblehead giveaways this year on the right sidebar of the site. Gwinnett has yet to announce any bobbles, but they are in the midst of a multi-day process of announcing their promos. No bobbles yet, but I’m hoping for some. Go here to view the announcement on their blog.
Cap food: The Astros blog, The Crawfish Boxes, did a post mocking up a cap for every team based on a type of food. The Braves got a waffle. The caps are pretty funny and worth checking out.