Braves Spring Training Update: Roster cuts, Arcia update, and more

The Braves announced some important updates to their Spring roster on Monday.

Atlanta Braves v Baltimore Orioles
Atlanta Braves v Baltimore Orioles / Christopher Pasatieri/GettyImages

Spring Training is moving quickly as we are just two weeks away from Opening Day. The Braves have gotten pretty much everything out of their roster they expected, with a few exceptions.

Position battles are finally beginning to gain resolution and the roster crunched to the final 26. We have updates on the roster, some injury scares, and who will be starting for the Braves on Opening Day.

Atlanta Braves option two pitchers to Triple-A, name fifth starter

Earlier today, the Braves announced they had optioned Bryce Elder and Huascar Ynoa to Triple-A Gwinnett. This decision gave fans the answer to who would become the fifth starter for Atlanta.

Bryce Elder had a very tough spring as he has an 8.25 ERA across 4 starts. Over 12 innings, he allowed 11 runs on 15 hits including six walks and 13 strikeouts. Walks have been a huge killer for Bryce and is something he will need to refine.

The good news is he had an option available and will get the chance to work on those things and potentially work his way back to the MLB roster if he is needed.

This means Reynaldo Lopez will be the final pitcher in the starting rotation for the time being. Lopez has pitched decently this Spring with a 2.16 ERA over 16.2 innings pitched, with four runs allowed on 10 hits including 6 walks and 13 strikeouts.

The team is still getting him stretched out to start games and his velocity indicates that as his velocity has been sitting in the 94 mph range on the fastball but he has gotten up to 96 mph as games have progressed. This is no cause for concern as he sat around that velocity when he was a starter 3 years ago.

We will see how Lopez does in the role for the time being and if things go south he can be moved to the bullpen and that could re-open the door for Elder.

Roster reassignments essentially set the Braves Opening Day roster

As if the Elder news wasn't enough today, the Braves announced they had reassigned seven players to minor league camp. This included a couple of players who had a shot at being on the Opening Day roster.

Atlanta's roster is now down to 28 players in camp and two of those players include Penn Murfee and Angel Perdomo. They are both recovering from injuries and are expected to be added to the IL before the season begins. So, essentially the Braves have their 26-man roster completed.

David Fletcher, Luke Williams, and Eli White have been playing well this Spring and had legitimate chances to make the team. Williams and White had been competing against Forrest Wall for the backup outfield role until the Braves signed Adam Duvall. Wall seems like the right choice to keep on the MLB roster with his speed on the basepaths.

Fletcher had a shot at the backup infield role but Atlanta seems to like Luis Guillorme more and it makes sense. The Braves had planned on Fletcher being in Triple-A to work on his swing but he looked pretty good at the plate with a .324 average over 37 at-bats including 13 hits, three RBI, three walks, and three strikeouts.

Guillorme gives Atlanta a left-handed bat off the bench and a quality backup defender. He's only gotten 18 at-bats this Spring but has five hits and two RBI with a .278 average.

Split-squad games are over and the Braves regulars will start getting into a regular season groove playing almost every day now. We are so close to regular season baseball and that is a wonderful thing.

Injury Updates for Orlando Arcia and Ronald Acuña Jr.

The Braves had an injury scare on Sunday as shortstop Orlando Arcia was hit in the hand by a pitch. He had X-rays done which came back negative and Arcia is now listed as day-to-day. Atlanta's shortstop had an MRI performed to ensure there was no fracture and it was confirmed that he did NOT have one.

Arcia dealt with something similar at the beginning of last season where he was hit by a pitch but X-rays came back negative. A few days later a microfracture was revealed and he missed just under a month of action. Hopefully, there's nothing else revealed on the MRI this time.

Braves fans can also rest easy about Ronald Acuña Jr. returning to play after his injury scare as he has been performing well on the field with no issues since Sunday. He ran the bases well and even made a sliding catch in the outfield with no issues.

Monday's game also had Acuña running well on the bases, scoring a run and making a nice running catch to end an inning.

This is an encouraging thing to see as we get closer to Opening Day. Acuña is primed to have yet another MVP-worthy season as long as he can remain healthy.

That's all the updates so far but we will bring any other news as it comes. We hope you are just as excited about the Atlanta Braves inching closer to the regular season as we are. It feels like it will be an incredibly special one for the team.

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