Well it’s been a long off season, and my beloved Braves bullpen got a face lift. We have finally addressed the main problem of 2006: SAY IT WITH ME PITCHING. Though we have taken great leaps to sure up our pitching for the 6th inning on, it did how ever come with a price. We sent slugging first baseman Adam La Roche to the Pirates for sure handed reliever Mike Gonzalez. Gonzalez has proven how ever he can provide the late inning stability out of the bull pen that the Braves lacked last year. Gonzalez has proven plain and simple he can get it to the 9th with lead intact. We also have Macay Mcbride(former #1 draft pick)returning with one full year in the majors under his belt, there’s little doubt that this kid is the future of the Braves rotation. We have one of the best closers(not to mention a nice guy, my wife and I got to meet him our last trip to the Ted)in Bob Wickman. It’s amazing how this guy took off last year. In a short time "Light the Wick" signs were every where, he was looked at as a savior for Braves Nation. We have with out a doubt one of the best(if not) the best starting rotation in the National league. We have the ageless wonder and my personal favorite John Smoltz returning for 2007. Maybe with the bullpen, stabilized John has a shot to win 20 games and to make a run for the Cy Young Award. We have none other than "Mr. Auburn" himself Tim Hudson returning for the 2007 season as well. Mike Hampton is returning for 2007 and is expected to return to the old Mike we are use to seeing. Kyle Davies and Chuck James are expected to round out our starting 5. Offense will be no issue this year, we have returning for 2007 Andruw Jones(hopefully for the rest of his career),a healthy Chipper, and the sure bat’s of McCann,Francouer and Renteria. The lead off spot will be of concern again, but when has it not been? Our defense will be interesting to watch this year, with Kelly Johnson making the move to 2nd base and Scott Thorman expected to get most of the playing time at first. But don’t forget that Hubbard is working close with Johnson to teach him that position. One need not look any further than what Hubbard did with a little guy who would eventually become a all star named Marcus Giles. So people keep asking me why am I so Happy these days? I tell them that summer is around the corner and Chipper and the Boys on Hank Arron drive are back and better than ever!!!!!!
DONNIE & TARA