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The Daily Chop: Merry Christmas!

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There’s been precious little news to report this winter, so we’ll just get straight to the point: Merry Christmas and thank you for following along with us despite all the insanity that 2020 brought.

Los Angeles Dodgers v Atlanta Braves Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

First of all, Merry Christmas to everyone and their families. We thank you for your continued support throughout the year and hope that today can be a welcome reprieve that puts a much-needed bow on an otherwise tumultuous 2020.

On a lighter note, the Braves brought us plenty of excitement this season and appear poised for continued success in the years to come. With the offseason progressing very slowly, the roster for 2021 may remain a mystery for some time, but the additions to the starting rotation are reassuring. The shopping list should be fairly short by now, so Anthopoulos just has to find the right fit as it pertains to another big bat in the middle of the order, then the roster will be all but ready for camp.

Braves News

Drew Smyly’s curveball is backwards

Ivan breaks down one of the weirdest pitches in baseball: the Drew Smyly curveball, which essentially tries to confuse the laws of physics.

In 2020, lefties threw 7,529 curves as classified by Baseball Savant. Of those curves, only 294 (right around four percent) went “backwards,” i.e., towards the first-base side. Of those 294, 173 (just below 60 percent) were thrown by Drew Smyly, who essentially never threw a single curve that went towards the third-base side. (Different queries yield different results; the number is either zero or two, based on rounding.) Of the curves with the most arm-side motion, Smyly had 22 of the top 23, and 109 of the top 111.

Starting Nine: Snitker’s train set and those presents that define us all

Cory takes a look at some of the best Christmas gifts shared by Braves fans.

‘Give this award to your wife’: Inside NL MVP Freddie Freeman and his family’s COVID-19 nightmare

Freddie Freeman overcame a lot to win the 2020 NL MVP, as did his wife, writes Buster Olney.

MLB News

Bell heading to Nationals in trade with Bucs

The Pirates sent first baseman Josh Bell to the Nationals on Monday, exchanging the 2019 All-Star for two pitching prospects.

1 holiday wish for all 30 MLB teams

Apparently the biggest wish for the Braves would be another shot at the Dodgers. But, I think avoiding the Dodgers altogether would be great too. Whatever it takes, just get to the World Series.

Who has edge in Yanks-Mets battle for DJ?

DJ LeMahieu is going to become a very rich man in the coming weeks.