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The Braves deploy Allen Iverson to counter concerns about parking

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Ever since the Braves announced their plans for SunTrust Park, people have worried about the parking. The park is poorly served by mass transit. There is not a ton of parking on-site and a lot of what is available — and there are around 14,000 spots available —  is not close. Much of it is across a freeway, much of it is a half mile to a mile away. And that’s before you acknowledge that the park’s location near the I-75/I-285 interchange is one of the most congested bits of highway in the country.

There are plans to deal with this. A lot of it is pie-in-the-sky stuff, though, based on fans using parking apps on their smartphones and buying spots in advance. In the real world people don’t work like that. They show up and figure it out once they get there. Which is fine if people have been coming to the park for a decade and know all the “secret spots” and stuff. It will be super difficult for a brand new place no one has been to before. And even more difficult given that a lot of what seems like ballpark parking is not, in fact, ballpark parking. Rather, it’s restricted parking for the thousands of people who work in the offices surrounding the park. Lots where, presumably, towing will be heavily enforced.

Eventually people will figure it out, but it will be a major pain at first. The Braves, though, are laughing it off:

I get that, at the end, they’re saying “don’t ask Allen Iverson about it, ask us,” but the commercial seems more like a mockery of people who care about things like parking. Which is an interesting message to send.

 

Yankees GM Brian Cashman not considering demoting struggling Greg Bird

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Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.

GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”

Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.

Chris Archer threw behind Jose Bautista

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Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.

Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.

The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.