So far during this young Grapefruit League season, the Atlanta Braves are getting pasted each and every game. If they look good on paper, that paper isn’t being written about the games they are playing right now. What kind of good team goes out and seemingly gets wasted every spring game? Oh, what’s that? The Braves do? Oh, okay.
Forgive the attempt at humor, but the Braves losing spring games is nothing new at all. I remember even back when the big three were running the pitching staff, each of them would look terrible almost all spring. Greg Maddux didn’t look good once, but I think he was actually using Spring Training at-bats to set up batters for season at-bats. Talk about a thinking man’s pitcher.
Bobby Cox’s teams never seemed to do that well in the spring and they won fourteen straight division titles.
Fredi Gonzalez is picking right up where Cox left off. The main thing for the pitchers is getting their work in against live hitters off of the mound and getting their arm strength up. They mostly throw fastballs at this early stage. Honestly, the way the team has played early in the games has been pretty good. Even the pitchers are getting outs this year. Only when the not-so-awesome pitchers and hitters come in do things go badly.
Hitters also don’t need to bring about stress by any issues they have. The main thing for Jason Heyward and his two cohorts in the field is getting their timing down and getting their work in. They will not win many games this spring, because the Braves just never do.
When the season comes, however, the fact that they are losing the spring games might actually be a good sign for a good streak of series victories to begin the season.