Follow along this week as our own Kris Willis previews each Braves position group heading into the 2019 season. In his first installment, Kris dives into the important questions surrounding the Atlanta starting rotation, including the pressing issue of who will man the fifth spot in the rotation. Stay tuned for more previews this week as players begin to report for Spring Training.
Speaking of the fifth starter, Mike Soroka, a front-runner for a spot in the rotation, spoke with our own Eric Cole as he prepares for the 2019 season. Soroka was impressive a season ago before succumbing to a shoulder injury, and now looks to continue the success he enjoyed at the outset of his career last May. You can read the full transcript of the conversation inside, which is recommended as Soroka is one of the more insightful players in baseball in spite of his young age.
The Braves will deploy another catching platoon of sorts in 2019, only this iteration will no longer include departed veteran Kurt Suzuki, who has been replaced by aging Atlanta favorite Brian McCann. Tyler Flowers will once again make up half of the catching duo, as the Braves opted to re-sign the 33-year-old backstop. As Gabriel Burns of the AJC writes, the impact of these two veteran catchers will exceed their offensive output, as their collective defensive prowess and leadership qualities will be important not only for a young pitching staff, but a young team.