A couple of solid features to read over today as we wait for the late afternoon game between the Braves and Nationals at 6:05.â†µ
FakeTeams asks the question: Is there more power in Martin Prado's bat? Being a fantasy baseball site, they raise the question in terms of his value as a second baseman in 2011. Prado is certainly capable of 20 home runs. He has the power and durability. The problem lies in his swing, which is very level and causes a lot of line drives. Similar to Jason Heyward, Prado's home runs are more of a mistake than him actually swinging for the fences.â†µ
As I said, he certainly has the power to hit 20 home runs a year, and I wouldn't necessarily be surprised to see it, but I think that would mean a change in his swing and approach, which is not what the Braves are looking for. Keeping the level swing and getting on base is what they need.â†µ
FanGraphs looks at Nate McLouth and the Braves outfield. Removing dead weight and moving Prado's bat to left field will prove to be a major upgrade for the outfield, so much that even a below average season for McLouth will probably work for the Braves - at least until the trade deadline. Expectations really aren't that high for McLouth. If he can just maintain his spot for a few months, I'm sure they would consider it a success.â†µ
Talking Chop provides the Braves minor league camp schedule, as well as some guidelines for attending. If you've ever been curious about attending, be sure to click the link.â†µ
Jayson Stark has some good stuff, including a mention that the Phillies are interested in Cardinals outfielder Jon Jay. Also, the Mets don't appear to want Luis Castillo in the starting lineup. Who knew?