March 20, 2013; Lake Buena Vista, FL, USA; A general view during the game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves at Champion Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Braves 5 Bold Thoughts For Spring Training

Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014 Spring Training season is underway as pitchers and catchers reported only a few days ago.  The Wild World of Sports is the destination for the Braves in Orlando, Florida.

Early on in the 2014 season, we’ve seen first basemen Freddie Freeman sign an eight year deal, Jason Heyward sign a two year deal and just yesterday the Braves locked up their young starting pitcher Julio Teheran to a six year deal.

Spring Training is where it all begins and where the front office gets a good look at their stars as well as their up-and-comers.  ST is usually a great way to see just how your favorite team looks heading into the season BUT the stats sometimes don’t add up to how the regular season will go – see 2013 B.J. Upton ST stats.

Below are my five bold thoughts to look for coming out of Spring Training

5. Gavin Floyd will pitch during Spring Training and pitch well.  Fredi Gonzalez will decide to slot Floyd in the starting rotation heading into the regular season and make his first start April 5th against the Washington Nationals.

4. The 6’4″ 210 lb left handed pitcher, Ian Thomas will impress the Braves organization and fans.  The 26-year-old from the Virginia Commonwealth University pitched in Double A Mississippi last season and is a 2014 non roster invitee.  He won’t make the roster but will make an impact to move to Gwinnett in 2014.

3. Tommy La Stella shows the Braves Nation that you should remember his name for the future.  He makes a great combination with our young shortstop, Andrelton Simmons, turning double plays throughout the month of March.  Tommy comes up short of making the roster out of Spring Training but heads to Gwinnett looking for the opportunity if Dan Uglla and Tyler Pastornicky slips.

2. Jordan Schafer will play extremely well this spring and actually beat out B.J. for the center field position.  On March 31st he will be the Braves center fielder and be slated in the leadoff spot in the lineup.  This will have a trickle affect in the lineup and make the Braves 1-8 dangerous.  Fredi loves the left-right-left-right lineup and will do this to start the season.  The new lineup looks like this…

1. Jordan Schafer

2. Andrelton Simmons

3. Jason Heyward

4. Justin Upton

5. Freddie Freeman

6. Evan Gattis

7. Chris Johnson

8. Dan Uggla

1. Craig Kimbrel will win his arbitration hearing on February 17th and the Braves will be looking for a new closer in the next year.  This will put a stamp on the Braves probably not resigning him long term.  But this will free up money to sign Simmons, Kris Medlen and Mike Minor to long term contracts.  These three will have contracts by the season begins and continue with the John Hart theory of locking up the young guns.


These predictions/thoughts do not represent the entire Tomahawk Take staff and are simply opinions. 

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  • Chris Headrick

    These predictions/thoughts do not represent the entire Tomahawk Take staff and are simply opinions. ….. Well said disclaimer bro, because I don’t see BJ being benched. They’ve worked too hard in the off-season to get him squared away, and despite his spring performance, Jordan won’t take his place in center. Ditto on Gavin. He may pitch well, but he won’t be in the starting five I don’t think. Very BOLD predictions though, and if you are correct sir, I will fall to my knees and submit to your au-thor-i-TY :)

    • Jeff Schafer

      Lol, I added it because when I was typing them out I was thinking to myself “hmm this may be inaccurate” but continued

      My opinions don’t have to be yours Chris!! Haha

      • Chris Headrick

        hehe I know bro. I’m just pickin’ atcha. :) I actually love those kinds of bold predictions, and you could very well hit the mark. None of us know as much as we like to pretend with any of this. :)

  • fireboss

    Five Reactions TO Bold Predictions:
    5) Floyd will try to pitch in May but will be setback by rehab issues. He will pitch in the second half and allow the Braves to hold Wood’s innings down so he’s rested enough for the post season. Floyd will throw 500 ball and about 105 innings and be on the post season roster.
    4) Anyone 6’4″, 210, left handed and can throw strikes impresses me so maybe…
    3) Not much bold there boss. Pretty well everyone’s take :)
    2) If Fredi G moved F5F out of the three hole he gets fired on the spot. The best RBI man in the lineup doesn’t hit 5th even if Schafer hits 350/350/450
    1) Kimbrel will win but he’s gone anway, win or lose. Just too expensive. Here’s a prediction; Kimbrel wins the arb hearing but has a fluke injury that sidelines him for 4 weeks. Walden flops as Walden will in the 9th. Wood is used as emergency closer and is lights out. Kimbrel comes back strong Wood returns to starting. Next off season Kimbrel is traded and Wood becomes closer. Now that’s bold .. and pretty far out… where’s my tequila….:)