David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that Braves catcher Evan Gattis had off-season knee surgery. In October, Gattis had a “dime-sized” bone chip removed from his right knee, which had been bothering him since 2006. As a result, the Braves hadn’t been using him in spring training at the same pace most teams use their starting catchers.
Knee problem and all, Gattis was able to slug 21 home runs and post a .771 OPS in his rookie season. Now with Brian McCann out of the picture, Gattis will get the lion’s share of playing time behind the dish for the Braves. When he isn’t behind the plate, the Braves plan to give him intermittent playing time at first base and in the outfield.