The projected line up for the Braves first pre-season game on Saturday.

I’m very excited about the Braves first pre-season game of 2017. I’ll need to watch it on ESPN gamecast or maybe there is a link to watch the game live on my tablet. I, just like many Braves fans, expect a great team this season and for many years to come. I will list each player and make a few comments on their prospective roles.
1. CF Ender Inciatre. Speed. Speed is what we need. Inciatre offers that and much more. Most lead off batters are looking to hit ground balls and try to use their speed to get on first base. Inciatre has both speed and power. He can turn a routine base hit into a double . He can also steal bases. His speed on the base a welcomed sight.
2. 3B Adonis Garcia. I say this with slight hesitation. Ideally Dansby Swanson will fill this role quite nicely. Adonis Garcia played in the number 2 hole great last season. His power and speed is a great compliment to Ender Inciatre. To have both players on base for our number three hitter will mean lots of runs scored for the Braves
3. 1B Freddie Freeman. Need I say more? Freeman was a hitting machine after the All Star break in 2016. Freeman hits for power and more importantly he puts the ball in play. Freeman is also very fast and his long stride down first base is almost like watching an Olympic sprinter. Expect big numbers from Freeman and a high batting average. Depending on how well the Braves team performs in the standings, this might be an MVP season for Freeman.
4. RF Matt Kemp. Matt Kemp has shed a lot of weight this off season without losing his power. I watched him in Spring training in the batter’s box, and his power is a sight to see. Expect a big season in his first full season as an Atlanta Braves player.
5. 2B Brandon Phillips. This is our new 2nd baseman and he will amaze Braves fans with his quickness on the field and at the plate. He could easily hit higher in the lineup, but he is no Spring chicken. His speed will almost be like the next top of the order after Kemp. This will be a privilege we aren’t used to in Atlanta. Dominating offense despite the place in the batting order.
6. RF Nick Markakis. Markakis was a great find in 2016. His speed in the outfield helps him chase down fly balls and this same speed will be great to see on the base pads as well. Expect a lot of run production from Markakis and having a 100 plus RBI season is not out of the question.
7. SS Dansby Swanson. He is the player that will be mentioned in the Rookie of the Year talks, but first he will earn it at the plate. He will put up great numbers as he has always done at every level in baseball. Swanson will eventually be a number 2 hitter in the line up depending on the needs of the Braves.
8. C Michael Flowers. Flowers is a power hitter and the only reason he is not a clean up hitter right now is there is not enough room yet. He makes great contact at the plate and he hits with power. He will drive in many players on base. Look for a breakout season from Flowers.
9. P or DH depending on the home teams location and league.


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