2005 Record: .556 (90-72), 1st place in NL Central
2004 Record: .593 (96-66), 1st place in NL Central
Who’s Out: Kyle Farnsworth (P), Julio Franco (1B), Rafael Furcal (SS), Leo Mazzone (Pitching Coach)
Who’s In: Todd Pratt (C), Edgar Renteria (SS), Lance Cormier (P)
Notes: The Braves are accustomed to cruising into the post-season without much struggle, but that will likely not be the case this year. Their pitching is barely a shade of what it was last year: Mike Hampton will be out recovering from Tommy John surgery, probably for the entire season, and Tim Hudson has been injured several times in the past couple seasons and cannot be counted on as a “sure thing”. The loss of Kyle Farnsworth left a gaping hole in the bullpen, so the Braves are going to need to make some serious pitching moves to continue to compete with the red-hot NL Eastern Division. The Mets have made enough improvements to give the Braves a serious run for their money, and if the Braves want to make it to the post-season they will probably have to aim for the wild card this year.
Next Up: Cleveland Indians
Labels: 2006 team profiles