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UAdan

Official 2015 Atlanta Braves Season Thread

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The time is upon us once again.

Sunny Florida provides an idyllic haven to rescue us from Winter's dread: spring training is underway. Baseball is here.

For the first time in nearly a quarter century, your Atlanta Braves enter spring training as a team that has very little postseason expectations. Gone is much of the star-power that brought so much excitement to the fanbase the last few years. Justin Upton, Jason Heyward and Evan Gattis have been trimmed from the roster as the Braves' trailblazing GM John Hart has committed to replenishing a thirsting farm system.

Now, the future for the Braves looks brighter than ever. Nearly half of our top 25 prospects were added this winter, including top-flight young talent such as Mike Foltynewicz, Rio Ruiz, Max Fried, Tyrell Jenkins and Mallex Smith. Hart has taken his position by storm and thrusted the Braves from a bottom 5 MLB farm system into at least a top 10 system. That young talent will be seen across the boards in Rome, Mississippi and Gwinnett and leave Brave fans salivating over the prospect of future championship runs in 2017 and beyond.

But what to get us through until then? Has Atlanta essentially punted away any hope of contending in 2015? Are the Braves truly destined for a miserable 90+ loss season, as prognosticators expect?

Spring always provides a fresh sense of hope, and for that reason, I leave you this: That's why they play the games.

The pitching will still be strong, as it always seems to be in Atlanta. Julio Teheran, Alex Wood, Shelby Miller and Mike Minor will serve as the backbone of the team, and should all be good enough most times out to give the Braves 'a chance'. The bullpen is still headed by other-wordly closer Craig Kimbrel, and key veteran additions such as Dan Grilli and Jim Johnson. The lineup is the true question - or concern - for Braves fans. Where will the power come from? Could we see platoons at three different positions? Who will protect Freddie Freeman? Will Nick Markakis prove worthy of his offseason contract and stay healthy? And we can't forget the skipper: will Fredi Gonzalez weather the storms this team should ultimately face in 2015 and keep them fighting?

But even if the experts are right...even if the Braves' starless offense muddles all year, even if the new additions all turn out to be busts, and even if the Nationals go 19-0 against us and win over 100 games...baseball is back.

And on this cold February evening, that is all that matters. America's pastime is always a treasure, in victory and defeat.

I present to you the 2015 Atlanta Braves Season Thread.

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Anyone think we have any shot of not finishing last in the division?

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Anyone think we have any shot of not finishing last in the division?

Yes. The Phillies will be our saving grace.

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Anyone think the JHey Kid will bounce back and have an All Star year? :trollface:

Doubtful, even if he stays healthy he just wasn't consistent, sadly.

With that said, yeah he'll probably lead all RFs in all major categories since he's not in Atlanta any more.

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Anyone think the JHey Kid will bounce back and have an All Star year? :trollface:

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It's all MCDs fault, his fairweathesr ass

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The Atlanta Braves wil be harder to watch than SC basketball this year. Oh, who the hell am I kidding? Probably not that bad, but still..........

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We'll need a lot of positive attitudes and some big career numbers to make a division run, I'll never say never...but I'll say neve lol.

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We'll need a lot of positive attitudes and some big career numbers to make a division run, I'll never say never...but I'll say neve lol.

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Just want to see Eury the Fury in center.

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It feels good to be at work listening to spring training games via mlb.tv, baseball's finally coming back.

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Mike Minor is a pussy.

Already with shoulder tightness. Right after he won the arbitration case to get more money from the Braves, after a bad 2014 season.

In case you couldn't tell, I'm going sour on this guy. Where ya at @@StallingsBaldSpot , need to save your boy here.

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We no-hit the Astros today in 10 innings and ended the game in a 2-2 tie. Weird spring training stuff at its finest. That's what 9 BBs will do to ya.

Other spring tidbits for those interested...

1. Really like what I'm seeing from Jace Peterson. This is one of the pieces we got back in the Justin Upton trade. Athletic guy, played football at McNeese State (?). He's hitting the ball well and is fast on the basepaths. Could be your Opening Day starter at 2B.

2. Eric Young, Jr. has also played well. I still think he's a better fit for a corner OF platoon with Jonny Gomes, but the team seems to be serious about giving him a shot in CF. He had a great diving grab yesterday.

3. Minor might not be ready to start the season, so it looks like we could see a battle for two spots in the rotation. Leading candidates are Eric Stults (veteran, typical crafty lefty - think Paul Maholm - sucked in '14 but was decent the two years prior) and Mike Foltynewicz (stud arm prospect we got in the Gattis trade, can throw 100 mph but has some control issues).

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I heard Shelby had a good start. :trollface:

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