During the offseason, the Atlanta Braves made a lot of trades and chose not to resign players in hopes to rebuild their entire team, and how those moves will turn out has sparked a lot of debate.
Melvin Upton Jr., Justin Upton and Craig Kimbrel were all traded to the San Diego Padres for draft picks, and Ervin Santana was signed by the Minnesota Twins.
The Braves signed contracts of five Gwinnett players, and they traded Jason Heyward for Shelby Miller from the St. Louis Cardinals.
The players that remain from last season are Phil Gosselin, Freddie Freeman, Andrelton Simmons, Mike Minor and Christian Bethancourt, all of whom are starters.
Most Braves fans were upset during the trading, especially the trades of Heyward and Kimbrel. However, getting rid of the Upton brothers helped tremendously, especially Upton, Jr. (formerly known as B.J. Upton), because the Uptons’ contracts were so expensive.
The Braves had to trade Kimbrel just so somebody would take over their contract. The trade with Heyward was unfortunate, but they received a better pitcher, which is what the Braves really needed.
Fortunately for the Braves, the choice not to resign Ervin Santana worked out in their favor, considering he has an 80-game suspension for a positive steroid test.
Before the season started, the chance of the Braves going to the playoffs was 100:1, and they were predicted to finish the season under .500.
The Braves swept the Miami Marlins in Miami, Fla., and won a series 2-1 against the New York Mets at home. They play the Marlins again in Atlanta, Ga., this week, looking to extend their record of 5-1. They currently lead the National League East by two games.
I can’t say what’s going to happen this year, but starting off the season 5-0 (before their loss to the Mets) for the first time since 1994 gives me high hopes in this year of rebuilding.
The last time the Braves won a World Series, gas was $1.15 a gallon, eggs were $1.16, Bill Clinton was president and TLC had two of the top three songs of the year.