It is time for Baseball and the opening matches is just hour away. I read on the internet, that fans are saying that Atlanta Braves will win the NL East. Sounds cocky? maybe, but I believe that’s make the fans, right? It’s shows how the die hard fan will do and say for their favourite team, the Atlanta Braves. And we are talking about really a great team here, the Atlanta Braves.
Read along after the break to find more details on Atlanta Braves.
With the Major League Baseball season just hours away, I have to say the Atlanta Braves will win the NL East. Everyone has their own opinion, but I have my reasons for believing that.
Heading into spring training, I think everyone’s favorite choice to win the division was the Philadelphia Phillies. How could you not pick them? They have the best pitching rotation one through four in the league. Their number five starter, Joe Blanton(notes), has never been given enough credit for how good he is. That being said, much like a year ago, injuries have been a problem.
Chase Utley(notes), Brad Lidge(notes) and Dominic Brown are all on the disabled list to begin the year. The Phillies are probably used to Lidge being hurt at this point of his Phillies career. The Utley injury is the one that creates the biggest issue. Just last week, Utley was fielding ground balls while sitting down, an obvious sign that he is nowhere near ready to play. This week, the Phillies released second baseman Luis Castillo(notes), leaving the team to rely on Wilson Valdez(notes). Brown should be back in a couple of weeks, but he might struggle considering the time he missed this spring. Eventually, he will prove to be a quality replacement for Jayson Werth(notes), but I’m not sure this is the year.
Add in the aging Jimmy Rollins(notes) and Placido Polanco(notes), and the division is ripe for the picking.
The Atlanta Braves have a better all-around offense. They feature a lineup that has Jason Heyward(notes) hitting sixth and rookie first basemen Freddie Freeman(notes) hitting seventh. Their success this season might rely on the health of the knee of Larry “Chipper” Jones. Jones has been one of the biggest surprises of the spring, hitting around .400 all spring. Playing third base on an everyday basis might not be a realistic expectation, but rookie Brandon Hicks(notes) would be a suitable replacement if needed. Brian McCann(notes) is the best catcher in the league and Martin Prado(notes) is one of the most unheralded players in baseball.
I haven’t even mentioned the addition of the 2010 Silver Slugger Award winner in Dan Uggla(notes). Uggla will hit fifth in this stacked lineup, and brings a power bat the team has craved for years.
The starting rotation is not as strong as the Phillies, but is a great front five from top to bottom. Derek Lowe(notes) carried the team to the playoffs last year. Tommy Hanson(notes) is a star in the making, while Tim Hudson(notes) has been solid since returning from Tommy John surgery. Rookie Brandon Beachy(notes) has shown great poise and possess tremendous control.
The one question mark is the health of Jair Jurrjens(notes). If Jurrjens can’t remain healthy, the team has options to turn to. Both Mike Minor(notes) and Rodrigo Lopez(notes) are in the minors and would fill in great in this rotation.
The bullpen features two question marks in veterans George Sherrill(notes) and Scott Linebrink(notes), but Peter Moylan(notes), Eric O’Flaherty(notes), Johnny Venters and Craig Kimbrel(notes) all own great arms to stabilize the final three innings.
It’s not going to be easy, but I think that even without Bobby Cox at the helm, the Atlanta Braves will be division champions again.
Atlanta Braves 2011 Opening Day lineup vs. Washington Nationals
I hope above postings can provide our readers with insight about Atlanta Braves.