One year ago the starting shortstop out of spring training for the Atlanta Braves was Tyler Pastornicky. He won the starting job out of camp and went into the season ready to go. When the season got going however, Pastornicky did not. He didn’t perform the way he should have and didn’t keep the starting job. Quickly he found himself sent down while young Andrelton Simmons took over. Simmons cemented his spot as the Braves starting shortstop with his play in 2012 so where does that leave Pastornicky?
A huge bonus this season for Pastornicky is the World Baseball Classic. No, he isn’t showcasing his talents on the world stage but Simmons is. While Simmons is leading the Nederlands, in the WBC and showcasing what he can do, Pastornicky is starting at short in the Grapefruit League games for the Braves. There is no way he will win the starting job away from Simmons. That is not going to happen barring some terrible collapse of Simmons’ talents. What he can do is show everyone that he is capable of starting as well.
For the Braves, how well he would play as a starter really doesn’t matter. They see his potential as a bench player and a utility player. Basically he could easily fill the role that Martin Prado did a few years ago where he can come in and give a day off to almost any starter through the middle of the diamond. His bat is capable for sure and he would be a great asset to the team. However, Pastornicky seems to think that he is also showcasing his talents for other teams. That is an interesting almost-rumor. He isn’t wrong, but the Braves might like his utility ability better than they thought they would a short time ago.