Apr 14, 2013; Washington, DC, USA; Atlanta Braves third baseman Ramiro Pena (14) during the second inning against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Atlanta Braves News 2/23/14



Pena learned plenty as Jeter’s understudy

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — While spending the first eight years of his professional career with the Yankees, Ramiro Pena found his path to the Major League level blocked by Derek Jeter‘s presence. But as he prepares to enter his second straight season as Atlanta’s primary backup infielder, Pena continues to count himself fortunate to have benefited from Jeter’s tutelage.

Whether during Spring Training or those stretches he spent with the Yankees at the big league level, Pena could also count on Jeter to provide him guidance in the clubhouse, on the bench or simply while they were taking turns fielding ground balls at the shortstop position.

“He was helping me a lot,” Pena said. “I didn’t have much of a chance to play there. But at the same time, he was teaching me a lot, too.”



Rant Sports

Coca-Cola, Chick-Fil-A and the Race to Name the New Atlanta Braves Stadium

Not only will the new stadium be in a more wealthy, financially stable part of town (this is to say nothing of the political implications evident in the move from Atlanta’s largely disenfranchised south side to its privileged and empowered north side), but the venue itself has the potential to bring in enormous amounts of revenue.

The city of Atlanta is in a somewhat unique position, and if the organization plays its cards correctly, it should be able to leverage this situation to its advantage.

The issue at hand is the naming rights for the new stadium. With major corporations such as Coca-Cola, Home Depot and Chick-Fil-A headquartered in and around the Atlanta area, there will be significant competition for the stadium’s name. And it is not unlikely that a sort of bidding war could ensue. How much would Pepsi Corporation be willing to pay to slap their name on the hometown field of their main competitor? Likewise, what would Lowes be willing to give up to do the same to Home Depot? And how much would Coca-Cola and Home Depot be willing to offer to keep their competitors out of their own backyard?



Atlanta Bullpen

Braves Farm System: Top Prospects

Spring Training is finally here. While we are getting ready for opening day, a lot of young players are getting ready to showcase their talents in front of big league clubs. With the excitement of baseball season comes the excitement of young players refining their skills in the minor leagues. Through this article, I’m going to break down what I think are the top two players at each position in the Braves farm system.

I’m going to start off with the position I feel like has the most depth of all the positions. Just sit back, and think of all the young pitchers that are already in the Braves clubhouse (Minor, Teheran, Medlen, Beachy, Wood, and Kimbrel).



Talking Chop

Braves Daily News Digest: 2/23

Braves News

“Cautious Optimism” Surrounding B.J. Upton And Uggla

Braves hitting coach Greg Walker was interviewed by DOB on Friday and he expressed encouragement with how B.J. Upton & Dan Uggla improved over the offseason, but made sure to note that it’s still very early in Spring Training. However, any improvement would be positive for these two, as both are coming off of absolutely abject seasons in 2013.

DOB Reports From Spring Training

We get a video clip of just over 90 seconds from Dave O’Brien as he talks about Braves happenings from what appears to be a not-so-sunny Lake Buena Vista. The coolest thing about this video is that we actually get to see the Braves players in action so if you’re excited to see even just a snippet of the team preparing for 2014 (as opposed to just looking at photos and longing for the sound of bats cracking and balls hitting gloves), then this is the link for you.

Laird Filling Leadership Role For Catchers

Brian McCann‘s departure to the Bronx was bound to leave a bit of a void when it came to leadership for the guys behind the plate. However, according to mlb.com’s Joe Morgan, Braves veteran Gerald Laird appears more than ready to fill that void and be able to help guide younger catchers Evan Gattis and Christian Bethancourt to success. In other news, Jason Heyward revealed that Laird’s nickname is G-Money. No word on when G-Money is gonna drop his mixtape.



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