Braves News: Braves make first spring training cuts, bullpen battle heats up, more
By Eric Cole
It was a good day for the Atlanta Braves yesterday as nobody got hurt and they got some very solid performances in route to a 3-3 tie with the Rays. Justin Dean had a good day at the plate and on the basepaths, and several of the Braves' bullpen options including Jesse Chavez, Nick Anderson, and Kirby Yates looked good while getting their work in. It would have been nice if the lineup regular had had a better day, though.
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Multiple rounds of roster cuts from big league spring training camp are inevitable and the Braves got their first round of cuts in yesterday as they optioned Chadwick Tromp and sent three minor leaguers back over to minor league camp. One of the minor leaguers cut, 2022 draftee Blake Burkhalter, got some bad news as he has to undergo Tommy John surgery and will miss the entirety of the 2023 season.
The Royals went out and signed a veteran as they signed in Jackie Bradley Jr. to a minor league deal. JBJ is still a strong outfield defender, but he has never been the most reliable guy at the plate and the last couple of years, he has been downright dreadful with the bat. It will be interesting to see if the Royals can get something out of him, because there is real upside here.
It is almost impressive the lengths to which the league will go to try to keep minor league pay down. Yesterday, it was reported that MLB is trying to get minor league players exempted from the state of Florida's minimum wage laws. The league is claiming that all they are trying to do is achieve clarification on Florida's existing labor laws, but their track record with how they treat minor leaguers tells a different story. The next round of CBA negotiations are going to be very interesting with MLBPA now representing minor leaguers as well.