The Atlanta Braves are now in spring training camp and have one official workout as a squad under their belts. I think I speak for all Braves fans when I say that it is really nice to have actual baseball back in our lives. One player that is seemingly enjoying being in camp and not taking it for granted is Charlie Morton who Mark Bowman wrote a nice piece on as his first spring training was 20 years ago.
While the Braves figure out the last bits of their roster in camp, one vacancy that we hadn't heard much about lately was the vacancy in their broadcast booth left when Chip Caray bolted to call games for the St. Louis Cardinals. Bally Sports' impending bankruptcy certainly must have clouded the picture a bit, but the Braves did announce that Brandon Gaudin, who has tons of experience and is a former Georgia Tech broadcaster, will be the Braves' new play-by-play guy. Gaudin grew up a diehard Braves fan and has endeared himself to fans already with stories of him growing up thinking the Braves' broadcast booth was his dream job. He seems like a really good hire and hopefully he is a good fit in the booth.
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Elsewhere on the site, we discussed the report that Joe Jimenez had to have spinal surgery this past offseason. There are a lot of folks who are really concerned that the Braves' gave up their top position player prospect for a guy who is hurt, but by all accounts the procedure was a minor one and Jimenez is in camp, throwing, and on track to be ready for Opening Day.
It is hard not to love the San Diego Padres as they keep making moves and trying to go for it. Yesterday, San Diego signed Cole Hamels to a minor league deal. Hamels has not thrown in the big leagues since 2020 when he made one appearance for the Braves after they signed him to a one year, $18 million deal. COVID helped blunt the financial hit of that contract, but that one still stings.
In sadder news, baseball fans have yet another legends of the game to mourn as Tim McCarver, Hall of Fame broadcaster and former catcher for the Cardinals, passed away on Thursday at the age of 81 due to heart failure. McCarver won the Frick Award as a broadcaster back in 2012 and won a pair of World Series rings as a player as well. Thinking of his friends and family right now.
Now that all teams have gotten started with their spring training camps, it is time to look at the competition across the league. MLB.com put together a list of the most interesting players in each team’s spring training camp in 2023 with the Braves' player being Michael Soroka. Given that he is coming off back-to-back Achilles injuries and is still somehow one of the favorites for the Braves' final rotation spot, that pick makes sense.