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roster-battles | January | 2006 Articles

2006 Archives

Roster Battles

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These are the players that should make the team this season, barring trade: (There's usually at least one trade or signing during Spring Training) Lineup 2B Marcus Giles SS Edgar Renteria 3B Chipper Jones CF Andruw Jones 1B Adam LaRoche RF Jeff Francoeur C Brian McCann LF Ryan Langerhans bench C Todd Pratt IF Wilson Betemit UT Pete Orr OF Kelly Johnson Starting Pitchers RHP John Smoltz RHP Tim Hudson RHP John Thomson LHP Horacio Ramirez (RHP Jorge Sosa) Bullpen (RHP Jorge Sosa) RHP Chris Reitsma RHP Blaine Boyer RHP Oscar Villareal I think you could flip Langerhans and Renteria in the batting order, but since Renteria is the prize veteran acquistion he'll probably start off the season batting 2nd. Now, you see the openings to make the team and what the Spring Training battles will look like. Not counting the bullpen, there aren't as many openings as there have been the past few years. You have one spot on the bench, assuming that the Braves go with a 12 man pitching staff at the beginning of the year. I found an article at Bravescenter about this battle. That spot should go to a right-handed hitter who can play first base, and probably needs to be able to play the outfield. The canidates are Dave Kelton, James Jurries, and Matt Diaz. None of these guys are known for defense. Kelton has plenty of power, but his on-base skills aren't very good. Jurries is a great hitter, but also tested positive for steroids and his defense is apparently terrible. Matt Diaz is a good hitter, but has never played first base in a game, although he is an experienced corner outfielder. I think that the Braves will keep Sosa in the rotation, because Scheurholz has publicly stated that's what the Braves want to do. So, you have 4 spots in the bullpen and no openings in the rotation. Left-handers John Foster and Macay McBride were key cogs in the bullpen last year, and should have the inside track to make the team again this year. I think both of them will make it. That leaves 2 openings for like 13 different pitchers to fight for, leaving for a real heavyweight battle... I think the main competitors here will be Mike Remlinger, Jeff Bennett, Wes Obermueller, Brad Baker, Kevin Barry, Lance Cormier, Joey Devine, and Anthony Lerew. I have no idea which two might make it and I'm not even going to bother to speculate. Opinions? Discuss.

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