— Thomson is happy to be in a pitcher’s park, and probably doesn’t realize Turner Field hasn’t played that way lately. Still it’s better than Colorado and Arlington.
— Thomson is pencilled in for the #3 spot, with Ramirez #4. I don’t think that’s a reflection on Horacio, but rather trying to get a R-L-R-L pattern. Honestly, I don’t think it matters much.
— The injury Thomson had that we couldn’t remember in Colorado was a torn labrum.
— The Braves “hope” Byrd will be ready by midseason. I expect they actually hope he retires.
— The two right fielders mentioned as targed are Jacque Jones and Guillen. Jacque still isn’t really a right fielder. Guillen wasn’t offered arbitration. I’d think they could do better with $20 million to play with.
I was probably too hard on Thomson yesterday, but I was disappointed that the Braves weren’t going after a pitcher of Cy Young Award quality. I think he’d have been a great addition to some of those top-heavy staffs the Braves had in the last decade, and he’s more likely to be good in 2004 than any rookie or near-rookie. But at the same time, if the Braves don’t get more offense it’s not enough.