Braves Daily News Digest: 4/16

Scott Cunningham

Your morning/afternoon stop for all the latest Braves news and other stories around the league.

Braves News

Rainout Causes Rotation Reshuffle

After rain caused Tuesday night's game to be postponed, the Braves decided to make some decisions when it came to the pitching staff. First, David Hale's turn will be skipped, as Julio Teheran will make the start on Wednesday against Cliff Lee and the Phillies. Also, this means that Hale will be available out of the bullpen for the rest of the series. This was done partly because of the fact that Aaron Harang has inexplicably come out of the gates in excellent form, so they could afford to skip Hale in the lineup.

Braves Are Among Teams With Good Blend Of Age And Winning

Dave Cameron of Fangraphs recently took a look at the various ages of teams in the major league, and although he admittedly states that he isn't breaking too much ground with the data, it's still interesting to see where the teams stack up when it comes to age. In the article, Cameron is very complimentary of the Braves as he had this to say:

They spent the off-season locking up the majority of their young core, but this graph is a reminder of just how young the Braves really are. The Cardinals and Braves are the best current examples of teams having both a strong present and future base of talent.

Once again, it's not groundbreaking, but it's nice to be reminded of the good position that the Braves organization is currently in.

Kimbrel Plays Catch As Concerns Are Eased

After sitting out the past few days with shoulder soreness, you could imagine that fans were beginning to believe that the next pitching casual for the Braves was going to be Craig Kimbrel. However, Kimbrel assuaged those concerns with his words on Monday night, then did so with his actions on Tuesday as he played catch.

Braves Organization Continues To Show Savvy

In more "Hey look the Braves are a smart organization" news, Richard Justice takes his turn talking about how the Braves continue to success in a "efficient" manner. From the article:

That is, baseball's best organizations have the ability to adjust to setbacks on the fly. Some franchises -- management, coaches, clubhouses -- have a resolve and a confidence that can carry them through tough times.

The Braves suffered potentially season-altering injuries, but the people in charge -- president John Schuerholz, Wren, etc. -- still saw the whole as greater than the sum of the parts.

Chris Johnson Will Return To The Lineup In The 7th Spot

After spending the last two games on the bench, BABIP Hero Chris Johnson will make his return to the lineup in Wednesday's contest against the Phillies, but he will do so in a new spot in the lineup. After spending the first couple of weeks hitting in the cleanup position, Johnson will now be hitting 3 spots lower in the 7th spot. When AJC Braves beat writer Dave O'Brien asked if the pressure of hitting cleanup was getting to him, Johnson replied with this:

I don’t put much stock in where I’m hitting. I think it’s just me pressing and trying to do too much. I need to get back to my good approach.

League Wide News

Rays' Moore Will Have Tommy John Surgery

On April 7th, Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Matt Moore left a start against the Orioles with the dreaded symptom of elbow soreness. After testing out the elbow while throwing on the side, Moore realized that he'd need the surgery, and yesterday he decided to opt for the surgery. Moore will be the 3rd Rays starter on the DL, and he joins what has seemingly become a laundry list of pitchers league wide who have had to get the surgery this season, and it's only mid-April.

Lagares Heads To DL

One of the best defensive outfielders in baseball will be sitting on the sidelines for at least 15 days, as Mets CF Juan Lagares has been sent to the Disabled List with a pulled hamstring. This comes at a time when Lagares was also starting to heat up at the plate, as he was hitting .314/.345/.471 with 121 wRC+ and a HR through the first 13 games of the season.

Reyes Should Be Back By Friday

Jose Reyes had a bummer of an Opening Day, as he left the game after his first plate appearance of the season and promptly headed to the DL afterwards. However, it appears that the 30-year old shortstop for the Toronto Blue Jays will be returning by Friday. Reyes was dogged by hamstring issues throughout 2013 but played very well when he wasn't on the shelf.

Selig: No Replay Controversy As Far As I'm Concerned

Bud Selig recently spoke on the replay system that's been implemented for the first time this season. As with anything that is making a debut, it's a work in progress and it's inevitable that there will be glitches and that some people won't be satisfied. Selig, on the other hand, seems completely satisfied with replay and says that it's "remarkable." This came on the same day that word came out that John Farrell would be fined for criticizing the replay system.

Bourn Will Be Activated While Morgan Goes Down

Nyjer Morgan's time in the Majors in 2014 was expected to be short-lived and indeed that is the case, as Cleveland's intended everyday center fielder Michael Bourn has been activated. Bourn's return to the lineup from a hamstring injury means that ol' Tony Plush will be heading down to AAA Columbus. Morgan did do well at the plate though, hitting .348/.484/.348 with a BABIP of .400 in his short time with the Indians' big league club.

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