As the spring has developed, the Atlanta Braves have gone through their struggles. However, there has been a decent amount of good things come from their shaky experience.
The biggest positive experience, to me, has definitely been that of Dan Uggla. It seems he has taken a complete 180 from his 2013 season.
He has struck out the second-most times on the team (13, behind B.J. Upton with 14). However, he has drawn just four less walks than strikeouts, tallying nine. Now, there’s no denying that with his swing, he is going to have his fair share of strikeouts. Yet, he actually has a very good eye at the plate. In 2012, he led the league in walks, and has drawn less than 77 only twice.
What’s most impressive to this point is the sharpness with which the ball is jumping off of his bat. Balls that he was trying to crush in 2013 are line drives this spring and he is still squaring up the balls that he should hit out of the ballpark.
For the team, Uggla’s power is about all they have had that is being shown off. He and Jason Heyward are the only two players with more than two home runs, and Uggla’s have been pretty impressive shots.
Regardless, it’s easy to say that Uggla is going to hit at least 20 home runs this season. Don’t be surprised, though, if he gets closer to the marks he hit before he came to Atlanta, hitting 30 balls out of the park. If he can do that, the team will be more than thrilled for him to be in their day-to-day lineup.