• Exclusives

    Braves fall in Grapefruit debut, Minor shines

    By Jim Pratt

    LHP, Mike Minor

    Even though the Braves fell to the Tigers 2-0 Saturday in their Grapefruit League debut, the bid for the final rotation spot hit the ground running with Mike Minor taking the mound in game one.  He got off to a quick start striking out the side in order in the first inning, including Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera swinging on a strike three changeup.

    With second baseman Dan Uggla playing a shallow right field, newly acquired Prince Fielder singled up the middle to start the second inning. After walking Brandon Inge with two outs, Minor got Brandon Laird to fly out to left field to get out of the inning unscathed.

    Along with tossing two scoreless innings, Minor finished the day allowing one hit, a walk and struck out three batters on 37 pitches, 21 of those for strikes.

    The offense needed a Jordan Parraz single to right field to start the eighth inning to end a no-hit bid by the Tiger pitching staff led by starter Doug Fister.

    Reliever AnthonyVarvaro took the loss after giving up a third inning lead-off homerun to outfielder Jerad Head. Other pitchers used by the Braves on Saturday included Arodys Vizcaino, Cristhian Martinez, Adam Russell, Dusty Hughes, Eric Cordier and Zeke Spruill.

    MORE NEWS …

    • Saturday’s starting lineup: 1.Bourn (CF) 2.Prado (LF) 3.Chipper (3B) 4.McCann (C) 5.Uggla (2B) 6.Hinske (1B) 7.Heyward (RF) 8.Diaz (DH) 9.Pastornicky (SS)
    • Randall Delgado and Julio Teheran are both scheduled to pitch two innings on Sunday against the Tigers in Lakeland, FL.
    • Freddie Freeman took live batting practice before the game Saturday. He told David O’Brien of The Atlanta Journal-Constituion, “I let it loose and I feel great” and that he didn’t even think about the knee. Also, Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports Freeman could be cleared for to take infield within the next two days.
    • Tommy Hanson took the ImPACT concussion test again Saturday and early indications are he will throw live batting practice on Sunday if eligible.

    By the way, the Spring Preview Fried Baseball podcast up now. You can hear it here.

    Also, before you go, check out the Lineup Card on the BravesWire homepage with headlines from over a dozen Braves news/opinion sources.