Coach Glav transforms into Glav the broadcaster
Tom Glavine has arrived and he’s ready to enter the broadcasting world. The 300-game winner will call this afternoon’s game against the Marlins with Joe Simpson. The game can be seen on MLB.TV, MLB Network and SportSouth.
This photo was taken about 30 minutes before Glavine was scheduled to be on the field for a pregame feature. When asked if he was going to wear the uniform in the broadcast booth or make a quick change Glavine said, “yeah, like Superman.”
Showing the same calm, cool demeanor that existed throughout his career, Glavine didn’t exactly rush over to the main field to prepare for the broadcast. Instead, he took time to watch Scott Proctor toss live batting practice for a second straight day.
With the back-to-back hurdle cleared, Proctor is looking forward to making his Grapefruit League season debut on Friday night against the Tigers. The veteran reliever, who is coming back from Tommy John surgery, could join the Atlanta bullpen some time in April.
Glavine will travel south tomorrow when the Braves begin their annual two-game swing in Jupiter. Wednesday’s game against the Marlins will also be televised and provided by the same aforementioned outlets. But Thursday afternoon’s game against the Cardinals will not be televised.
While in Braves camp this week, Glavine will get used to some of the broadcasting duties he will handle this upcoming season and also take advantage of the chance to don the Braves uniform and work with some of the club’s young pitchers.
In other words, he’ll be preparing for some of the same duties he will possess this season. While hit title is special assistant to the team president, Glavine will essentially be a jack of all trades this year as he attempts to determine what kind of role he would like to focus on in the future.
After sending this entry originally, I received an email from TBS that revealed John Smoltz will serve as one of their analysts for their weekly national broadcasts. But more importantly, it sounds like he will team with Simpson to serve as an analyst for the Braves games carried by Peachtree Television this year.
There has been a wealth of pitching knowledge floating around Braves camp recently. While broadcaster Don Sutton isn’t currently present, Phil Niekro arrived this morning and will stick around for the remainder of the week.
Glavine, Niekro and Sutton stand as three of the 24 pitchers in Major League history to notch 300 career victories.
Today’s broadcast will allow you to watch Jason Heyward get his first look at Marlins ace Josh Johnson. But the day’s storylines from a Braves perspective will focus on Takashi Saito’s attempt to rebound from two rough performances and Jair Jurrjens, who will look to duplicate the success he had on Friday, when he debuted with two scoreless against the Pirates
Jurrjens hasn’t recently felt any discomfort in his shoulder and there isn’t really much reason to consume yourself with worry about him experiencing problems throughout the season. But it will still be interesting to see how he feels after attempting to complete three innings (or throw approximately 50 pitches) today.
Saito’s problem during his first two outings stemmed from his inability to keep his pitches down. The Braves don’t seem to be worried yet. But a third consecutive rough outing from the 40-year-old reliever may provide even more reason to believe Peter Moylan could actually serve as Billy Wagner’s primary setup man for a majority of this season.
NOTES: After Tuesday night’s 5-2 win over the Nationals, Bobby Cox jokingly said, “Heyward has his worst game down here and still got on base two times.” The 20-year-old right fielder recorded a broken-bat infield single in the first inning and later drew his seventh walk (28 plate appearances) of this exhibition season.
* Nate McLouth’s struggles continued last night as he went 0-for-3 and saw his batting average drop to .040 (1-for-25). But if you’re stretching for a sign of optimism, he did put the ball in play during each of his three plate appearances.
McLouth, who has struck out a Major League-high 10 times, has said that he has come to realize that something usually clicks during a certain at-bat during Spring Training. We’ll see Thursday if the ball he hit to deep center in the third inning on Tuesday night was a sign of better things to come.
* TalkingChop.com’s Martin Gandy has prepared a book appropriately titled “Talking Chop 2010 Annual.” This book reviews the 2009 season, previews 2010 and provides a comprehensive look at the organization’s most significant players.
Those interested in purchasing or learning more about this book can go to Gandy’s blog or just click here.
* The Braves will hold an Open House at Turner Field on Sat. March 27 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. ET. Fans will have a chance to run the bases, throw in the bullpen, enjoy many of the stadium’s interactive entertainment options and view some of the seats available via season ticket packages. They are advertising one full-season package that costs $249 ($3 per game).
Today’s Braves lineup vs. Marlins