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braves-pitching-plans-2 | March | 2006 Articles

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Braves Pitching Plans

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(From the Macon Telegraph) Starters The Braves first game of the spring is today, with Horacio Ramirez getting the start against UGA. Jorge Sosa and John Thomson will get the starts Thursday and Friday against the Dodgers, Tim Hudson will start Saturday against Houston, and John Smoltz will start Sunday against the Netherlands WBC team that includes Andruw Jones. (The Braves-Netherlands game is one of 15-scheduled exhibition games between MLB and WBC teams this spring.) Assuming everything plays out as Bobby Cox has envisioned, and depending on how Sosa is used in the WBC, the rotation beginning Opening Day will be: Hudson, Smoltz, Ramirez, Sosa, Thomson. Relievers Relieving Ramirez today will be Oscar Villarreal, Sean White, Jose Ascanio, Chris Reitsma. Relieving Sosa on Thursday will be Lance Cormier, Kevin Barry, Macay McBride, and Joey Devine. Mike Remlinger, Wes Obermueller, Chuck James, Brad Baker, and Anthony Lerew are slated to relieve Thomson on Friday. Cox has told reporters that Lerew has "closer stuff", so don't be surprised if Reitsma is our setup man and Lerew is our closer by April 3. Other Interesting Sidenotes Catcher Clint Sammons was excited to be scheduled as the second catcher in today's game against UGA. Sammons was a 2004 draft pick out of UGA, and likely will be playing against a few former teammates, not to mention former coaches, now as a member of the Atlanta Braves. Good for him! Also, Brian Jordan is apparently doing very well at first-base so far this spring, and he's hoping it scores him a utility roster spot. We'll see how it goes when he actually gets in some games this spring. I pulled more interesting tidbits from another article: Chipper Jones' bout with a stomach flu last month caused him to lose 18 pounds, and he's now away from the team while his son is ill. Blaine Boyer is expected to be fine after finishing last season with a sore shoulder. Edgar Renteria missed a day of practice late last week due to a pull in his rib cage, but is reportedly fine (it wasn't his back). Marcus Giles, all but confirmed as the Braves' new leadoff hitter, has missed a couple of days for personal reasons; Cox says he isn't worried. Don't forget: The World Baseball Classic starts Friday!

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