Opening Day, Braves at Phillies

It’s been a long winter, but spring is here (at least, in spirit) and Atlanta Braves baseball is going to be underway shortly. Braves Journalers, it’s Opening Day, Braves at Phillies, and we’ll start this piece by grading the offseason, then get into the roster and the Opening Day Lineup.

Grading Atlanta Braves Offseason

I thought this was the offseason. The offseason the Braves push their chips in on a player and put the team over the top. Alas, it was not, but the Braves did make some moves. Let’s recap the additions that are still here, whether it be MLB or MILB deals:

Braves Offseason Additions

Grade: The Braves went with an interesting strategy in regards to filling out the roster. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out very well as Carl Edwards Jr., Jason Kipnis, Jake Lamb, Phillip Ervin, Victor Arano, and Guillermo Heredia did not work out. Jake Lamb re-signed with the White Sox and, as of now, it looks like the rest of the players are still in the org (just an educated guess on Ervin) and maybe the Braves have something worked out with Kipnis that he’ll join the team after the 2nd road trip. Still, If one were to add up the money it took to bring in the aforementioned 5 as well as the cost of Johan Camargo, you’d get enough to pay for a solid reliever and I feel like that would’ve been a better investment. Anthopoulos did confirm (today) on 680theFan that the Braves were cash strapped and that kept them from re-signing some of last year’s guys like Darren O’Day, Adam Duvall, Mark Melancon, and Shane Greene.

Still, the Braves did the heavy lifting and solidified the rotation with Smyly and Morton and the lineup with Ozuna. However, a trade or 2 or a few solid signings would’ve provided depth to both the bench and relief core. Overall, I’d give the offseason a solid B.

Braves Opening Day Roster

There area few surprises here as the Braves go with 4 starting pitchers, 10 relievers, and a 4-man bench…in the NL…without the DH. Hopefully it’s for a short period and hopefully the bench doesn’t suck as hard as it looks like it’ll suck.

I thought, for sure, Sean Newcomb would’ve been traded or back to the minors but he pitched great, even hit 100MPH in spring, and Anthopolous had this to say about him:

“If you had asked me before Spring Training, Newcomb wouldn’t even have been on my mind. But he earned it. He never said a word, he worked his tail off and he just went out blew the doors off!”

Alex Anthopoulos

Also, Anthopoulos with a little nugget from last trade deadline (would things have been different?) regarding Drew Smyly and doubling down on the signing:

“So Drew Smyly was the guy we had to have. I knew there would be criticism, especially over the number. We tried to get him at trade deadline but he was coming back from injury and we didn’t know how he would look. There’s a pre-eport card and a post report card. We think Smyly will check all of the boxes on the post report card.”

Alex Anthopoulos

Braves Opening Day Lineup

This is really good. Watch it, Braves Journalers.

Thanks for reading Opening Day, Braves at Phillies. Let’s get it! Game 1 of 162.

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Author: Ryan Cothran

Ryan is the site editor and manager of Braves Journal. Follow him on Twitter.

39 thoughts on “Opening Day, Braves at Phillies”

  1. Thank god for baseball.
    And thank you to everyone here for making this the best bar on the internet.

  2. Watching baseball bc opening day, but I missed Miggy’s homer because I was rooting against the Yankees. Vlad Jr did hit a liner at 114 mph off the first pitch he saw, tho.

  3. I was at the last Braves home game with fans. The Cards scored 10 in the first and I left.

  4. There’s a nice little intro to the game on Sports South emphasizing how the team has been underestimated by the mass media last few years. I don’t hate a little bit of a chip on our shoulders.

  5. Varsity was throwing hard earlier, sitting 96. I wonder if he was overthrowing from excitement.

  6. He’s throwing a lot of two-strike fastballs, which tells me he doesn’t have feel for the curve. Really nice job putting away Gregorius there with what looked like a splitter, a two-seamer at 90 that he just buried in the dirt.

  7. As all of us have been saying throughout the winter and early spring, Pablo Sandoval is one of the best acquisitions the Braves made during the offseason!

  8. I think Pablo Sandoval just blew up a whole lot of prop bets.

  9. The Braves have hit 5 balls over 100 MPH exit velo. The Phillies…0. This team is going to score a lot of runs.

  10. Will Smith looked absolutely nasty that inning. If he pitches like that, we’ve got a top 5 closer.

  11. I don’t love the “runner on second in extras” rule. Also, I don’t make the rules.

    C’mon, middle of the order.

  12. Even though there wasn’t much he could do about that play, Ozzie has had a very forgettable opener

  13. I continue to not understand the “blocking the plate” rule. Realmuto absolutely did there without the ball. That’s supposed to be illegal, but umpires seem to have thrown up their hands and given all advantage to the catcher in that situation.

  14. Yes, the catcher can basically do whatever the heck he wants now.

    I don’t have a great feeling about this game.

  15. @31

    Well, I certainly don’t have a great feeling now.

    Anyway, somebody should tear-ass over the catcher at some point in that situation to see what the umpires do. My guess is they’d call the runner out, but you’re gonna be out anyway.

  16. @34 yeah, but at least four of those twenty outs were hit 100 mph. Can’t expect much more than that out of the hitters.

  17. Given how Maxie looked in the early going, I think it was a great job by him to exit the game with only two runs yielded. He did what you’re supposed to do: limited the damage despite not having his command. Love it.

  18. I don’t like Bally’s on base/outs graphic. Black/white fill-ins can mean either of two opposite things, and the outs shouldn’t be fill-ins at all. Should be colored dots to the side of the on base graphic. Tighten it up, Bally.

  19. @37

    Bally Sports is not at all an ideal carrier for the vast majority of Braves games to be on (or the vast majority of Hawks and Atlanta United games to be on, for that matter…they basically have a monopoly on non-NFL Atlanta sports). The lack of availability being the main issue. The only fully legal way to watch the games for in-market fans currently is to sign up for a crappy and vastly overpriced TV service (either cable or AT&T TV).

    But to your point, I did find the scorebug to be too small and hard to read, as well. And also, the first out of the inning populated on the second of the two out dots rather than the first…which isn’t a big deal, I guess, but still annoyed the heck out of me.

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