The Atlanta Braves were able to stave off a bullpen meltdown yesterday thanks to a little help from Mother Nature. After a rough relief appearance from Jackson Stephens ended with the Braves' lead evaporated and the team actually behind, a timely two-run triple from Braden Shewmake and then rain halting play gave the Braves a win.
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In yesterday's game, Dylan Dodd threw four scoreless innings with four strikeouts, continuing his very strong spring training. While he is a relatively new name on Braves fans' radars, he has made the most of his opportunity to introduce himself to the masses this spring and is making a strong case for the Opening Day roster even though he will face some roster headwinds.
The World Baseball Classic is heating up as the pool stage plays out. The United States got a needed win in convincing fashion over Canada yesterday thanks to a first inning that reminded us of some not so pleasant playoff games in the recent past. Also, it appears to be helpful to have Mike Trout playing on your team, although more science is required here.
The Dominican Republic, meanwhile, set themselves up to advance to the quarterfinals in the World Baseball Class thanks to their win over Nicaragua yesterday. Their loss to Venezuela earlier in the tournament was not ideal, but if they win out, they should be in. However, that will involve winning what should be a very hotly contested matchup with a good Puerto Rico team.
A quick update on Bally Sports: to the surprise of no one, it looks like they will indeed file for bankruptcy on March 17 which will bring the league's TV broadcasting questions to a head. MLB has gone ahead and put some contingency plans in place to make sure games can and will get broadcast for fans, but what the TV rights landscape looks like after the dust settles here is very much TBD.