Heyward, McCann in lineup for Saturday opener

Fredi Gonzalez makes his Braves managerial debut Saturday against Mets. (Jason Getz photo/AJC)

Fredi Gonzalez makes his Braves managerial debut Saturday against Mets. (Jason Getz photo/AJC)

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — All-Stars Jason Heyward and Brian McCann highlight the travel squad for Saturday’s Grapefruit League opener – and Fredi Gonzalez’s Braves managerial debut — against the New York Mets in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

Rookie first baseman Freddie Freeman, center fielder Nate McLouth, outfielder Jordan Schafer and utility man Eric Hinske are also set to be in the starting lineup, with Hinske in left field and Schafer as designated hitter.

Gonzalez said his probable lineup Saturday would look like this: 1. Schafer DH, 2. McLouth CF, 3. Heyward RF, 4. McCann C, 5. Hinske LF, 6. Freeman 1B, 7. Brooks Conrad 2B, 8. Brandon Hicks 3B, 9. Diory Hernandez SS.

Schafer (left0 and McLouth were both in tentative lineup for Saturday, with Schafer as DH and McLouth in CF.

Schafer (left0 and McLouth were both in tentative lineup for Saturday, with Schafer as DH and McLouth in CF.

New second baseman Dan Uggla should make his Braves debut in Sunday’s home opener against the Mets at ESPN Wide World of Sports.

Gonzalez is bringing some of the Braves’ top young pitchers on the trip, including rookie closer Craig Kimbrel, lefty Jonnny Venters, and prospects Randall Delgado and Brett Oberholtzer.

Delgado and Oberholtzer were among the extra arms on the travel roster, not scheduled to pitch but available if needed. Relievers scheduled to follow Jurrjens, in no particular order, include lefty Eric O’Flaherty, Venters, Kimbrel, Cristhian Martinez, Anthony Varvaro and Steve Marek.

Kawakami update

Kenshin Kawakami will likely be in camp by the middle of next week, general manager Frank Wren said  Friday. The veteran pitcher has been delayed by visa issues in Japan and missed the first two weeks of camp.

The Braves are trying to trade Kawakami, who had 1-10 record last season and is owed $6.7 million in the final year of his contract.

53 comments Add your comment

tb

February 25th, 2011
6:46 pm

Brava

February 25th, 2011
6:52 pm

I was really hoping to see Uggla play in a Braves’ uniform tomorrow. The next televised game isn’t until March 3. Hopefully, he’ll play then.

Can’t wait to see the game!!

GO BRAVES!!!

justin1

February 25th, 2011
6:59 pm

KK go away come again some other day…Preferably in a Phillies uniform.

Mr. Melancholy

February 25th, 2011
7:11 pm

If they can’t trade KK, I hope his visa problems extend another 7 months.

Greg

February 25th, 2011
7:11 pm

If Schafer is really 100%, then I predict he will be THE story of the the spring. Just look out. He has something to prove, and he has amazing skills. I’m more excited about him than about anyone else.

JoeBravesFan

February 25th, 2011
8:23 pm

The Nationals need starting pitching and LOVE to waste money…maybe they’ll help us out with KK! :-)
What channel is the game on tomorrow?

Matt

February 25th, 2011
8:27 pm

Schafer and Freeman both have something in their own ways to prove.In Schafer’s case he needs to prove he’s healthy enough to make the team.In Freeman’s case he needs to prove he can hit mlb pitching and take his walks.Then there is Heyward’s second year coming up.

So we have a lot to look forward to.

wes714

February 25th, 2011
8:48 pm

DOB, I was just wondering if Chipper will miss the first game of the season due to his ejection from last seasons dugout toss?

Wat Wat Wat

February 25th, 2011
8:59 pm

this is a bonehead question but what time does the game start?

can’t miss this, really looking forward to the season

Billy Jack's Barbecue & Shrimp Co

February 25th, 2011
9:14 pm

DOB, you are going to need to have athroscopic surgery on your hands from so much typing out these blogs. Thanks for making us the best informed fans in MLB.

rickman

February 25th, 2011
9:17 pm

Hey…I hear the Cards need a starting picture..We’ll trade KK and Freeman for their first baseman…OK..OK….It’s nice to dream..

rickman

February 25th, 2011
9:18 pm

OOPS.. Pitcher

Wat Wat Wat

February 25th, 2011
9:25 pm

cards need whatever they can get right now, rickman

David O'Brien

February 25th, 2011
9:37 pm

DOB, I was just wondering if Chipper will miss the first game of the season due to his ejection from last seasons dugout toss? — wes714

We’ve addressed this quite a few times, but for those who’ve missed it: Chipper is not suspended for his first game back. We had assumed he would be, that it was automatic for anyone ejected from a game while on the DL, but that was not correct. He never got suspended, and told me he didn’t even know if he was fined, that he couldn’t remember getting fined for the incident.

wes714

February 25th, 2011
9:53 pm

Thanx for the info and sorry for the repeat just started following your blogs about a month ago. Keep up the good work been very informative.

SoCalBrave

February 25th, 2011
10:02 pm

Thanks for all the blogs DOB! It’s so great to read so much info about the Braves here in California. I know more about the Braves than most of my friends know about their dodgers or angels… Keep up the great work!

Jeff

February 25th, 2011
10:10 pm

Any radio coverage for spring games yet?

bostonbravo

February 25th, 2011
10:15 pm

just seeing “McLouth” makes me queasy.
Kawakami….physically ill///

oh boy

Loafer

February 25th, 2011
10:17 pm

Anyone know if these games are televised? Which network?

Wat Wat Wat

February 25th, 2011
10:22 pm

it’s on mlb.tv and the radio (97.9 and 680 am).

no idea when it starts though

David O'Brien

February 25th, 2011
10:37 pm

it’s on mlb.tv and the radio (97.9 and 680 am).

no idea when it starts though

No, it’s 93.7, and it starts at 1:10 p.m.

Yo

February 25th, 2011
10:39 pm

kkk should be the opening day starter and closing day starter. What do you think.

shmoe

February 25th, 2011
10:40 pm

lot of lefties in that lineup! who’s the mets’ victim?

Yo

February 25th, 2011
10:40 pm

That is not a nice dream but a wet one.

Yo

February 25th, 2011
10:40 pm

Yo

February 25th, 2011
10:43 pm

shmoe

February 25th, 2011
11:17 pm

santana is gonna get rocked!!

shmoe

February 25th, 2011
11:17 pm

he’s welcome to join the braves anytime though.

TAC

February 25th, 2011
11:33 pm

Yo, I think you need to go back to the Mets blog where they are talking about getting loaned 25 million because their owners are horrible.

You know you’re horrible owners when NEW YORK has to get a LOAN.

OldeFan

February 26th, 2011
2:03 am

Everytime I think of Schaffer, I think of him looking like a deer caught in the headlights, in center field, and the ball going past him. I really don’t know why some folks think he is so good. I thought he was a terrible center fielder. Of course, Andruw Jones spoiled a lot of us. Schaffer seemed to strut a lot, for very little reason. Just saying.

Conyers Braves Fan

February 26th, 2011
5:18 am

DOB: Leave the pressbox windows alone. The security guards are watching every move you make.

leroy

February 26th, 2011
8:22 am

I would hope that KK has gone back and looked at films of his bad starts (many) and good starts (few) and noticed the difference is simply command of his fastball. When he is not afraid to throw it and he hits his spots he is good (seldom), when he nibbles and throws junk he gets behind in the count and winds up grooving fastballs and getting hit.

He still has a chance to show some pride and earn the coin the Braves are paying him. You never know when injury, suspension, or scheduling may force him into a key point in a pennant race. I’m sure the Braves have stressed this to him and hopefully he takes heed and does what he needs to do to learn to command his fastball and make himslef an asset to the team instead of simply a financial liability.

Smiling Jack

February 26th, 2011
8:35 am

Batter UP!!! A day closer to the season opener is always good. Go Braves!

Kathy

February 26th, 2011
9:09 am

Braves fan in Florida, going to see the boys today, can’t wait! GO BRAVES!

Fan since 1977

February 26th, 2011
9:54 am

Save BMac that’s a lineup heavy on lefties (including SH Conrad). Mets must be starting a RHP. Fredi is definitely a Cox disciple.

Why Hinske in LF and Schaffer at DH? Just to keep the big man sharp?

Fan since 1977

February 26th, 2011
9:59 am

Sorry, brain cramp, did not mean to say BMac, meant Diory. Ugh.

Mike Jones

February 26th, 2011
10:19 am

DOB: Any internet feed for the radio broadcast?

Larry

February 26th, 2011
10:36 am

I’ve got one word for you: YES!

Chief Nocahoma

February 26th, 2011
10:42 am

Why do so many ball players who make millions of dollars a year and pay agents a handsome sum have visa issues? Seems like they would apply for the visa for the return trip on the first day they arrive at their home country. The date they need to be back in the US is well known to them and their agent. Aren’t these guys responsible adults? Hope they are fined for every day they miss.

bud selig

February 26th, 2011
10:43 am

Great blog DOB. Is mlb tv not doing a free preview this year?

The Dude Abides

February 26th, 2011
10:43 am

Is the link on the Braves website free? or do we have to pay to watch spring games live?

Peter Moylan

February 26th, 2011
11:10 am

Kawakami = comeback player of the year. BOOK IT.

Peter Moylan

February 26th, 2011
11:11 am

Dude, I don’t think we can even pay to watch all the games. My uncle got MLB.tv and they only had a couple of games with live video.

Peter Moylan

February 26th, 2011
11:14 am

The Mets should be contracted.

Mitchell

February 26th, 2011
11:22 am

Does anybody even want to bother to remember how good KK was in the second half of the 2009 season?

I mean, come on people. Is he a great pitcher? No.

But did he deserve to lose 10 games last year? No, would be the answer to that.

Certainly not with the almost non-existent run support he got. And Bobby did him few favors often using weak line-ups in his starts.

Does he suck basically? Yes. Is he getting too much money? Si.

But did he not beat Roy Halladay, Dice-K Matsuzaka(?), Johan Santana and others in ‘09 and did he not help us almost make it to the playoffs?

Yeah, I thought so. Domo arigato.

wheelz007

February 26th, 2011
11:40 am

thanks for the update DOB

wheelz007

February 26th, 2011
11:40 am

glad we’ve got some regulars in the line up today

wheelz007

February 26th, 2011
11:42 am

I look forward to seeing how Schafer and Freeman perform this spring, as well as Chipper and several of our your pitchers.

wheelz007

February 26th, 2011
11:43 am

I meant young pitchers

TinyURL

February 26th, 2011
11:51 am

“he didn’t even know if he was fined, that he couldn’t remember getting fined for the incident.”
DOB, or anyone else who knows, this made me wonder how fines are handled in MLB. I apologize in advance if this has been discussed but I’m kinda new and infrequent here. Would Hoss have had to write a check, does the club pay or do they take it out before paying him.

SoCalBrave

February 26th, 2011
12:10 pm

KK is not as bad as people make him out to be. He’s a decent #4, #5 starter that’ll give you 5.0 innings with a respectable ERA. I hope he pitches well this year… with another team.

Bigwheel

February 27th, 2011
10:58 am

Hey DOB. Is this the best team youve covered thus far in your career? I know its only spring, but the simple fact theres no chatter of golf, and more infield work says a lot. It seems not one person has shown up in the slightest bit out of shape, and not a single comment about OBP on the scoreboard.

http://fashion4ue.blogspot.com/2013/09/longchamp-sactrousse-de-toilette-sac_5.html

October 7th, 2013
4:06 am

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