Mark Bowman at MLB.com has his latest ramblings up about the Braves. It’s mostly about their potential offseason moves. Stop me if you’ve heard this before:
- They need an outfielder, but don’t want to spend any money;
- They could trade for one, but they need to find someone willing to take on Kenshin Kawakami or Derek Lowe’s contract; and
- They’re likely going to end up with some toolsy outfielder “with warts.”
Even less than inspiring is when Bowman says that the Braves would certainly consider a trade for Colby Rasmus, but really would prefer a right-handed bat. I sure hope that’s not the team’s actual thinking. Because while, sure, it’d be nice to have some lefty-righty action in the lineup, doesn’t there come a point where a platoon advantage is far outweighed by the overall quality of the wrong-handed batter? I mean, Jeff Francoeur is a righty, but I somehow don’t see him as preferable to Rasmus. Not that the Cardinals are gonna trade Rasmus anyway. Because they are not insane. I’m just grumpy.
Oh well. The whole column is worth reading anyway, if for no other reason than for this passage:
There has sense been some reason to believe that Kawakami would rather continue pitching in the United States. The Yomuri Giants were believed to be one of the clubs interested in the 34-year-old right-hander. Kawakami has said that he doesn’t like pitching in the Tokyo Dome, which serves as the Giants home. My only response to that is, “Would he rather pitch in Gwinnett County’s Coolray Field?
Lots of teams have crazy concession items and lots of them will circulate photos of the more gonzo ones in the coming week leading up to the baseball season. The Braves, however, have been one of the more aggressive players in the gimmick concession item game in recent years, and they just sent around a release talking about some of the stuff they, and their concessionaire, Delaware North, will be serving at their new ballpark, Sun Trust Park, in 2017.
Among them:a blackened catfish po boy, which is a blackened 6-ounce filet of catfish cut up among three tacos, with a cajun remoulade. Some BBQ beef brisket sliders. A double burger. An ice cream bar. They’re also going to have a regionally-inspired thing called “The Taste of Braves Country,” showcasing southern cooking from Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama. Which they’re calling “Braves Country.” Accurate enough, I guess, even if some of us are old enough to remember when they aspired to be a national team. Alas.
The big item, though, is this one:
It’s called the “Tomahawk Chop” sandwich. It’s a fried pork chop with collard green slaw and white BBQ sauce. It serves four and costs $26. I’m guessing it tastes fantastic, but I think the name is pretty cringeworthy for the same reason the cheer which gives it its name is. And, given the dynamics of the Braves move to their new stadium, the choice of BBQ sauce is . . . amusing? I dunno.
Anyway, enjoy, Braves fans.
Ten days ago Nationals ace Max Scherzer said he’d be ready for the start of the regular season. “I’m gonna do it,” Scherzer said.
[Ron Howard from “Arrested Development” voice] — No, he’s not:
Nationals manager Dusty Baker said that Max Scherzer is not on track to be the team’s opening day starter, and will most likely open the season as the third pitcher in the rotation.
He’s still projected to make it to the opening rotation, taking the hill, most likely, on Thursday April 6 against the Marlins. At least if the schedule doesn’t slip any more.
Scherzer, as you probably know, has a stress fracture in the knuckle of his right ring finger, which has messed with his preparation and has caused him to alter his grip a bit. As of now Stephen Strasburg will get the Opening Day nod.