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Atlanta Braves Opening Day countdown: the 80s

Atlanta Braves

ATLANTA, GA – MARCH 29: Fans walk in The Battery Atlanta prior to Opening Day at SunTrust Park between the Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies on March 29, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

The weather has hurt the continuation of the Atlanta Braves Opening Day countdown. We’ll catch up here with the 80-89 pieces of Braves history.

Winter weather in the frozen tundra has left the Atlanta Braves Opening Day countdown stalled for a bit. We’ll catch up with a pair of posts. First, this one counting down the 80s on the list, and then catching up to today’s number 73.

We’ll go through the 80s, starting from 89.

89. Mahler losses

At a time that the Braves were really not great, one guy was consistent for the team year-in, year-out in the starting rotation. Rick Mahler took a starting role in 1981 and after returning from injury in 1984, he was the team’s workhorse through 1988.

Over his Atlanta Braves career, he went 79-89 with a 4.00 ERA over 1,558 2/3 innings, pitching 307 games, starting 218 of them. His best year was his final one with the team when he ended up 9-16 over 249 innings with a 42/131 BB/K ratio.

88. Long’s HR as a Brave

When recalling the best shortstops in Atlanta Braves history, one name that certainly should be mentioned is Herman Long, who played with the team from 1890-1902. Long turned himself into an elite player before the turn of the century, when he aged quickly.

Long finished his Braves career with a .280/.337/.390 line over 1,647 games with 88 home runs and 434 stolen bases. He ranks 3rd among Braves shortstops all-time in home runs, 2nd in games and triples, and 1st in runs scored, hits, doubles, RBI, and stolen bases among shortstops in Braves franchise history.

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