Mark Bradley

Mark Bradley is a sports columnist and blogger for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Atlanta Braves - the best team in baseball


"Keep it quiet, but we're undefeated." (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

Yeah, I'm surprised, and no, I don't think it will last. (Let's note that they started 17-7 last season. In no sport do the words "small sample size" resonate more than baseball.) And the Atlanta Braves aren't the only 3-0 team out there: The Colorado Rockies are likewise undefeated, and they're not expected to do much of anything, either.

Still: Credit where it's due. The Braves have played three games without losing. Four days ago, I'd have guessed they were more apt to play three games without winning. But pitching can make any team look good, and the Braves still have pitching, at least at the top of the rotation.

They've won three games, having yielded a total of three runs. (If memory serves, that's the way April 2014 -- the entire month -- went.) They've won one game 2-1 and another 2-0. They won the third when Mat Latos, who can be hyper, yielded seven runs while retiring two Braves.

Again, it's a small sample size. But again, this would appear to be the Braves' template. They're not apt to score many runs. Their pitchers will have to work a quality start nearly every game for this team to have a chance. And without the peerless Craig Kimbrel on the back end, the bullpen won't be as good. Yes, these relievers have done the job so far, but we say once more: It's a long season.

But enough raining on the parade down Peachtree Street. The Braves are 3-0. They're play the next six at home. Maybe this grit-and-gravitas stuff will work over 162 games. (Although I'd suggest that pitching has way more to do with 3-0 than grit and gravitas. This is baseball, after all.)

Oh, one thing more: As for the flying start proving that the Braves' new/old front office aced the offseason ... well, I'd say it's way too early to know that, too. Indeed, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports today poses the question posed here a while back: Was all the rebuilding really necessary?


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About the Author

Mark Bradley is a sports columnist and blogger for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He has been with the AJC since 1984.