If Atlanta Braves first baseman Troy Glaus comes even close to matching his best season of 47 home runs and a .284 average, the Braves could actually compete for the East title.
The problem is, Glaus has hit that well just once in his entire career. His hot preseason streak is promising only to show that he is healthy.
Glaus is a .250 hitter, but it is the power the Braves desperately need. The problems are he hasn’t hit a home run and this hot streak has produced two RBIs. He’s not hitting with men on base, but he is scoring runs.
How important is Glaus to this team? Obviously, they hope Glaus is a first baseman who performs better than Casey Kotchman. That shouldn’t be too hard if he stays healthy.
But I think the Braves and Bobby Cox are banking a lot more on their only real free agent move in the preseason. A good season for Glaus could very well translate into the Braves returning to the playoffs. Add a successful Jason Heyward, a young group of future All Stars (sorry Chipper, but not you buddy) and a very good–possibly one of the best–rotations in baseball and this is a team that is not going to lie down without a fight.
Derek Lowe is already complaining about minor injuries. He’s an important part of this puzzle because if he has another rough season for the Braves, he could sink the ship like he helped do last year.
The team also has a new ace in town in Tommy Hanson, who doesn’t even have a full season under his belt.
Still, it has been quite some time since I’ve been excited about the Braves season to begin. Play Ball!