ROME — Ending the 2018 period with the National League East championship and the NL’s best supervisor and rookie was additional than plenty of to give the Atlanta Braves superior hopes for the forthcoming period, but they weren’t ready to slide by in the offseason.
Atlanta supervisor Brian Snitker explained all through a information conference at Monday’s once-a-year Sizzling Stove Accumulating in Rome that the team’s success most likely got some of their division opponents very hot beneath the collar, incorporating that the division as a full experienced a higher degree of levels of competition.
“It got a good deal greater. So did we,” Snitker explained. “I experience like, with the year’s expertise and a good deal of people men — what they went as a result of previous 12 months — we’re heading to be greater, way too. We’re heading to be a 12 months older, additional experienced. We produced some terrific additions.”
One of people additions was signing seven-time All-Star catcher Brian McCann to a just one-12 months, $2 million deal. The previous Brave performed for Atlanta from 2005-12 and was on the inaugural Rome Braves group that gained the South Atlantic League championship in 2003.
Atlanta Braves common supervisor Alex Anthopoulos explained McCann’s mind-set considering that coming back to the group has been quite constructive.
“I consider Atlanta was the only place he was ready to play at this point in his job,” Anthopoulos explained. “He’s appear in a good deal, devoid of us obtaining to prod him or talk to him to. He would like to do the job on data with our starters and relievers. He’s appear in to converse to some of our younger young children. He is all in with the firm — fully. He’s not a man who’s just actively playing a further 12 months. I wouldn’t be stunned if he performs a good deal additional. I consider we’re just fortunate that he was dying to appear back right here.”
Along with McCann, the Braves also signed 3rd baseman Josh Donaldson, who was introduced to the Blue Jays all through Anthopoulos’ time as GM in Toronto.
“Josh Donaldson is so enthusiastic about getting right here,” Snitker explained. “He feels good. He’s healthful. I viewed video clip of him in games at the stop of the 12 months, when he was with Cleveland, and this guy’s a seriously, seriously good player. He is seriously enthusiastic about getting an Atlanta Brave. I consider people men are heading to be terrific for our clubhouse and terrific for our younger men. A good deal of our men are even now creating their baseball card. These men have just one.”
The Braves also signed totally free agent Nick Markakis for a further 12 months, inking a $6 million offer with the outfielder.
A constant offer of younger gamers has the group optimistic as very well with pitchers and catchers established to report to spring coaching Feb. 15. Snitker talked about gamers like Kyle Wright and previous Rome Braves pitchers Bryse Wilson, Touki Toussaint and Mike Soroka as people expected to carry on to make an impression on the group.
“That’s the splendor of our spring coaching,” Snitker explained. “We’re bringing in younger seriously proficient gamers. Our coaches are enthusiastic about receiving their arms on them. We were being waiting around for a quantity of a long time right here. Now, they are right here and they are heading to hold coming.”
Anthopoulos explained the group is remaining individual with regard to the totally free brokers left unsigned this offseason.
“Based off of previous wintertime, I’m not stunned,” he explained. “There’s even now a good deal of totally free brokers out there, and we’re talking to a good deal of totally free brokers that are even now out there. It wouldn’t surprise me if there’ll even now be some in a handful of weeks when we open up up camp. It’s just a slower tempo, and I consider men are receiving additional comfortable signing afterwards.”