Monday, February 8, 2016

Football's over, Spring Training Soon

Spring is right around the corner, and that means the Braves are reporting down in Orlando soon for training. That also means we're getting closer and closer to actual baseball again, which is all I really care about in this stupid month of February.

I hate February. Football is over, college basketball is at the pointless part of the season, the NBA is basically useless as they've decided who is going to make the playoffs and who isn't for the most part, hockey isn't here anymore, and baseball is still a month away from training. It is truly the worst time of the year for sports.

I used to spend this time in tax season, lamenting my life choices and grinding out early returns. I'm no longer doing that. Now, I spend my time in February checking on Twitter, looking at rosters, working on accounting, and watching the occasional basketball game in between HGTV marathons and Adult Swim on cartoon network. Yep, living the dream.

So, what am I looking forward to with the Braves roster? He's a sneak peak.

- Jason Grilli - I'm looking forward to watching Grilli get back on the mound as the Braves closer after a bad injury sidelined him for the season last year near the All-Star break. And subsequently signaled the sell-off of the Braves team that followed. I can pretty much tie all the moves that happened between July 2015 and now for the Braves as being sparked by that Grilli injury.

- Freddie Freeman - Hopefully I get to see a fully healed Freddie Freeman that can find the ball without pain in his wrist. That would be key for this offense, because when Freddie was out of the lineup they were an offensive disaster, and even with him in the lineup he was barely functional.

- The Random-Ass Infield - I have no idea who will play second this season routinely. This will be an interesting battle between likely Jace Peterson, Gordon Beckham, Emilio Bonifacio. Or some combination that involves them playing infield spots in a platoon. We also have some questions at third, so that will involve Adonis Garcia and Hector Olivera. Oh and SS will likely be Erick Aybar who I've seen very little of since he's played his entire career in the AL.

- Michael Bourn in Center? - Will he be functional? He could barely hit last year. We had a decent OF in Cameron Maybin, and we traded him. We had a crappy OF in BJ and we traded him. And before that we had Michael Bourn and he was decent. However, he's older now and I'm not so sure he's in good enough shape to carry the load. Which means Braves minor league fans might get their wish and get a dose of Mallex Smith this year in the middle.

- Do we even have a LFer? - I'm pretty sure we're still paying Nick Swisher an abominable amount of money to be on this team because we dumped some other contracts. $10M of that money is owed by the Braves, and I'm not sure we can afford to stick his sorry butt in left the entire time. So there's some money you can light on fire while we figure out what to do in left. Maybe Olivera? Maybe Ender Inciarte? Maybe a fan raffle with a free glove and a jersey for the day?

Anyway, once we get spring training underway, I'll start digging into who is doing well and who isn't. Who will make the 25 man roster and who won't? Because March? March is a fun month. February blows hard.


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