The Braves used 14 different starting outfielders over the course of the 267 games that were played from the start of the 2015 season through Aug. 1 of this past season. Their only players to make at least 75 starts as an outfielder within this span were Nick Markakis (249) and Cameron Maybin (126), who spent the entirety of the ’16 season on the Tigers’ roster.
While Markakis provided stability in right field and both Maybin and Ender Inciarte did their part to create some consistency in center field, the Braves used 12 different starting left fielders within the span that preceded the arrival of Matt Kemp, who made his Atlanta debut on Aug. 2 before serving as the starting left fielder during 54 of the Braves’ remaining 56 games.
Over the course of this 56-game stretch, the Braves used a total of six different players as a starting outfielder. But Kemp (54 starts), Inciarte (54) and Markakis (53) were the only Atlanta players to be in the lineup as a starting outfielder more than three times within this span.
There is always a need to create insurance to protect against those health-related issues that will inevitably influence a lineup’s makeup within any season, but with Kemp, Inciarte and Markakis, the Braves are approaching this season with a pretty good feel for how their outfield mix could look on a daily basis.
“These guys want to play on a daily basis and they don’t want to talk about wholesale jerseys and taking days off,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “It’s a good feeling knowing who you will have a chance to put out there on a daily basis.”
A little more than three months before the start of the 2015 season, Markakis underwent a neck operation that was similar to the procedure that sidelined Mets third baseman David Wright for the final four months of this past season. It took Markakis more than a year to regain all of his strength, but his determination and dedication has been legitimized, as only three other Major Leaguers — Kole Calhoun, Andrew McCutchen and Kevin Pillar — have logged more innings as an outfielder than him since the surgery.
While Teheran and Garcia will likely make at least one start for their respective teams and Chinese cheap jerseys, Colon and Avila won’t necessarily log any innings on the mound because they have been placed within the designated pitcher pool for their two nations.
Each team has the option of using the designated pitcher pool [DPP], which works like this: A team can use up to 10 designated pitchers but can’t have more than two on its active roster at a time. Those “active” DPs can be replaced at the beginning of each of the next two rounds, but only by another DP. Once a DP has been replaced, he cannot return to the active roster for a subsequent round. Using Team USA as an example, Danny Duffy and Tanner Roark are the active DPs for the first round of pool play, so they can be replaced on the roster before the second round or the championship round, but only by one of the team’s other DPs. And if a DP joins for the second round, he can be replaced for the championship round, but only by wholesale MLB jerseys and another DP.
Freeman, Teheran, Colon, Rojas and Albers will have the option to make a relatively short drive from the Braves’ Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Spring Training base to compete in the first round. The United States, Canada, Colombia and the Dominican Republic make up Pool C, which will be contested at Miami’s Marlins Park from March 9-13. The top two teams from each of the four first-round pools will advance.
Inciarte, Garcia and Avila will travel to Jalisco, Mexico, to compete in the first round within Pool D, which consists of Venezuela, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Italy.
The teams that advance from Pool C and Pool D will travel to San Diego for the second round, which will be played from March 14-19. The semifinals and finals will be played with authentic jerseys from China at Dodger Stadium March 20-22.
Kennedy and Kent will compete in the first round within Pool B, which will be played at Japan’s Tokyo Dome. The participating teams are Australia, Japan, Cuba and China. Teams that advance from this pool will stay at this location to compete against the two teams that advance from Pool A, which consists of Korea, the Netherlands, Israel and Chinese Taipei.