Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Pitchers and Catchers Report Thursday

Charles Odom, writing for AP notes that pitchers and catchers are reporting to the Atlanta Braves spring training camp on Thurs., Feb. 16. And, just as it was last year, and the year before, and so on, the know-it-all baseball pundits are saying the Braves can’t possibly reload again. No. This year manager Bobby Cox’s run of 14 straight titles is done.

Well, although I’m a Braves fan I bought it last year -- too many good players had left Atlanta. The string couldn’t continue...

OK. This time, I’m going to wait and see. The job Cox did in 2005 was so masterful I’m not sure what the former-R-Braves third baseman (1967) can’t do as a manager. Cox, a natural patient leader with the nerves of a cat burglar, is the best in the biz.

AP: After winning 14 straight division championships, Bobby Cox is confident that spring training will provide solutions to the latest challenges facing his Atlanta Braves. When pitchers and catchers report to spring training Thursday in Kissimmee, Fla., followed by the rest of the team next week, most of the roster will be set. But the few holes are significant. The Braves need a new leadoff hitter and a closer, and they must adapt to new pitching coach Roger McDowell after having Leo Mazzone on the job for 15 years.

With a shrug, Cox said he'll somehow find one or more answers. "We like what we've got," Cox said. "We've done it before with pieces and we'll do it again."
Illustration by F. T. Rea

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