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Hursh, Biddle among eight in Braves’ first round of roster cuts

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The Braves trimmed 10 players including former top pitching prospect Jason Hursh from their spring-training roster in the first round of cuts announced Wednesday. None of the moves could be considered surprising.

Dansby Swanson out of the lineup

Hursh was optioned to Triple-A Gwinnett and hard-throwing left-hander Jesse Biddle was optioned to Double-A, while six others were reassigned minor league camp: catchers Joe Odom and Kate Scivicque, injured outfielder Dustin Peterson, lefties Sam Freeman and Adam Lolarek, and right-hander Rhiner Cruz.

In addition, rehabbing pitchers Dan Winkler and Jacob Lindgren were moved to the 60-day disabled list.

Hursh, 25, a first-round draft pick in 2013, had a 12.00 ERA in two appearances this spring, allowing six hits and four runs in three innings with a walk and a hit batter. He posted a 1.97 ERA in 43 appearances in 2016 between Double-A and Triple-A, then gave up four hits, five runs and three walks in 1 1/3 innings in his first two major league appearances.

Biddle, a former Phillies first-round draft pick, impressed early in Braves camp after missing the entire 2016 season while recovering from Tommy John elbow surgery. He could compete for a spot in the major league bullpen by midseason.

Peterson, a bench candidate entering spring training, showed well early in camp before breaking the hamate bone in his left hand, an injury that required surgery and is expected to keep him out for about two months.

The moves left the Braves with 49 players in camp including 28 pitchers.

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