The Atlanta Braves opening day roster is finally set, with Brooks Conrad filling out the last spot for Braves batters, and Jesse Chavez and Jo-Jo Reyes claiming the last two bullpen spots. Conrad was in a pitched battle with infielder Joe Thurston, but in the end Conrad came on strong and he was already on the 40-man roster, which may have had something to do with him being added and not Thurston.
Jesse Chavez didn't have the best spring, in fact he had the worst spring of just about any Braves reliever, but in the end it was likely his experience that won out and earned him the spot. Jo-Jo Reyes is an unlikely bullpen addition, but after having a good spring the Braves must believe he can contribute to the staff in some form or another. His addition does leave the Braves without an experienced starter in the minor leagues in case of an injury on the big league staff. They do have Kris Medlen and Reyes himself who could fill in, but they are not stretched out and likely could not fill in for extended periods of time.
Overall, there are not really any surprises. These three additions are about what we expected for the past week.
The Braves opening day roster now looks like this:
Lineup: Nate McLouth, Martin Prado, Chipper Jones, Troy Glaus, Brian McCann, Yunel Escobar, Jason Heyward, and Matt Diaz
Backups: Eric Hinske, Omar Infante, David Ross, Melky Cabrera, and Brooks Conrad
Rotation: Derek Lowe, Jair Jurrjens, Tommy Hanson, Tim Hudson, and Kenshin Kawakami
Bullpen: Billy Wagner, Takashi Saito, Peter Moylan, Eric O'Flaherty, Kris Medlen, Jesse Chavez, and Jo-Jo Reyes