5 former Braves players off to troubling starts in spring training

Several former Braves players are not off to great starts down at spring training.

Chicago White Sox v Los Angeles Dodgers
Chicago White Sox v Los Angeles Dodgers / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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For the most part, spring training stats aren't particularly predictive. The Atlanta Braves have had plenty of guys take spring training by storm only to completely wash out in the regular season and others who have struggled in camp only to go off once games start counting. Every guy is different and trying to read the tea leaves too much is a good way for someone to go mad.

Still, spring training performances do tell us SOME things. They show us which hitters are seeing the ball well at the plate and whose swing is in a good spot as well as which pitchers have the best feel for their pitches and who has knocked the offseason rust off first. Those things don't tell us who is going to be good or bad over the course of the 2024 season, but it can help figure out who is going to start the season well.

With that in mind, here is a look at some former Braves who are not off to the hottest starts this spring. Again, all of these guys could turn things around in short order, but their struggles this spring could take some of the sting out of them leaving Atlanta.

Jason Heyward

The trade that sent Jason Heyward to the Cardinals was the unofficial start of the Braves' rebuild. Heyward was thought to be the next face of the franchise when he came up from the minor leagues, but he did not develop offensively the way many thought and by the end of the 2014 season, the two sides were not on the same page in terms of both a contract and the direction the team needed to take.

In the nine seasons since then including a lengthy stint with the Cubs, Heyward has posted a .727 OPS at the plate while remaining one of the game's best outfield defenders. However, Heyward is now in the twilight of his career with the Dodgers and spring training has not been treating him well so far. In seven games this spring, Heyward has slashed .211/.250/.211 without an extra base hit thus far. One hopes that he will be able to string together at least one more solid year before his career comes to an end.