Andruw Jones is honored to have been the only Braves player chosen to wear Jackie Robinson's #42 on April 15th to honor Robinson's breaking the color barrier in MLB 60 years ago.† A few weeks ago, Ken Griffey, Jr. suggested that Commissioner Bud Selig lift the ban on wearing #42, temporarily, to honor his memory by allowing players to wear a jersey with his number on April 15th.† Others given the honor include Ken Griffey, Jr. and Barry Bonds.
Remember a few weeks ago when Phillies SS Jimmy Rollins said the Phillies were the team to beat?† After last week's sweep, a Philadelphia newspaper ran with the headline "The Team to Beat...And Beat And Beat."† I loved that and had to share!
The much touted Saturday matchup of John Smoltz and Tom Glavine proved to be less†newsworthy than the unseasonably cold weather.† Smoltz gave up two earned runs and and seven hits in his six innings of work.† In 5 1/3 innings, Glavine also gave up two earned runs but just four hits.† Smoltz declined to celebrate the victory over his old friend, however, saying "The bragging rights are reserved for who wins the division and gets to go on to the World Series."†
While Smoltz didn't have much to say about his win yesterday, Matt Diaz did, and it only makes me like that kid more.† When discussing the homerun he had in the second yesterday, he said it was the sacrifice fly in the sixth (which Mets RF Shawn Green dropped) that gave the Braves the lead that he enjoyed more.† And it's not just because it put his team in the lead.† No, he was excited to take the lead before Smoltz left the game - to give Smoltz the shot at the win.† Diaz said, "If†we would've given him some support last year he probably would have won the Cy Young award."† Diaz is exactly the kind of team player the Braves are known for fostering, and he's one of the many "kids" on the team who work to make veteran and team leader John Smoltz proud.
Before today's game, the Braves will attempt to test out the arms of Mike Hampton and Lance Cormier to get a better idea of when we might expect them back.† Hampton will throw a bullpen session and the Braves will keep their fingers crossed that he's ready to come back sometime in May.† Cormier, who's eligible to come off the DL on April 15th, will long toss before the game on Sunday.
And last, but not least, my Gator plug of the day.† Urban Meyer, Head Coach of the 2006 National Champion Florida Gator football team, will be in attendance at Sunday's game.† For those who don't know, Urban Meyer was a SS in the Braves farm system in the early 1980s.† Something I didn't know is that he was also Mark Lemke's roommate for a year while the two were in the Gulf Coast League.††Urban Meyer epitomizes my†favorite kind of person: a Gator fan AND a Braves fan!
Up today in Chop Chatter:† Which Braves player will wear the #42 to honor Jackie Robinson on April 15th?† What was the headline in Philly on Friday?† Does Smoltz have bragging rights now?† Who was most proud of Smoltz's win yesterday?† Who will test their arm before today's game?† Which SEC football coach will be in attendance at Sunday's game?