You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks


Welcome to

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on

Phillips shows again why Braves like all they’ve seen from veteran 2B

BRADENTON, Fla. – Brandon Phillips’ left hand and wrist already bore the scars of multiple surgeries, so when the Braves second baseman got hit high on his left hand near the wrist by a first-inning fastball Tuesday, there was concern.

But after staying on the ground for a minute or more and being checked out by a Braves trainer and manager Brian Snitker, Phillips insisted on staying in the game.

“He was like, I ain’t coming all the way down here and not play,” Snitker said, smiling. “He is tough. He’s a gamer. I was like, you want another at-bat if you get it? He was like, ‘Hell, yeah.’ He likes to play. He shows you all the time what he can do. He’s a good player.”

Phillips played his scheduled 5 ½ innings and went 1-for-2 at the plate with a run-scoring groundout in the third inning and an opposite-field single in the fifth. Afterward, he showed the spot where the ball hit him, which somehow had little if any swelling and looked better than some nearby skin scarred from previous surgeries.

“If I think I can play, I’m going to try to play and get some ABs, get ready for the season,” said Phillips, 35. “That’s what spring training is all about. Regardless, I’m going to get my ABs. If I have to go to a minor league game or if I just need to see the ball, hit the ball, see what I can and can’t do. Try to prepare myself for the season. That’s why I stayed in the game and tried to get as many ABs as possible.”

When he got hit, the sound could be heard from the pressbox and the ball caromed high off his hand.

“It hit me on the bone; I had surgery on it before,” he said. “All my injuries have been on my left hand. Broken finger, thumb, right here (points to inside of his hand, injured last season). My left hand doesn’t like me.”

Phillips is 3-for-13 with a double, four RBIs, two walks and two hit-by-pitches in seven Grapefruit League games, and he’s impressed teammates and coaches alike with his work habits and hustle in games and practice sessions.

“I love watching him play,” one high-ranking Braves official said Wednesday.


Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Atlanta Braves

Freeman’s 9th-inning homer gives Braves a wild win at Milwaukee
Freeman’s 9th-inning homer gives Braves a wild win at Milwaukee

MILWAUKEE – After the Braves twice rallied from four-run deficits without any contributions from Freddie Freeman, the big first baseman came through when it counted most Friday night. Freeman’s two-run homer to center field in the ninth inning lifted the Braves to a 10-8 series-opening win against the Brewers at Miller Park, the third consecutive...
After solid spring, Braves’ Bonifacio has floundered
After solid spring, Braves’ Bonifacio has floundered

MILWAUKEE – After going to Braves spring training as a non-roster invitee and earning an opening-day roster spot, Emilio Bonifacio seemed poised to get his career back on track following two dismal seasons at the major league level in 2015 and 2016. But 20 games into the season, Bonifacio was struggling to get into a rhythm and had fared particularly...
Braves’ Phillips misses second start
Braves’ Phillips misses second start

MILWAUKEE – Brandon Phillips was out of the Braves lineup Friday night for the second consecutive game since straining his left groin, but the veteran second baseman had progressed and was expected to start Saturday in the second game of the three-game series against the Brewers. “He’s doing good,” said Braves manager Brian...
Braves’ TV ratings are up sharply this season
Braves’ TV ratings are up sharply this season

The Braves are drawing sharply higher local TV ratings than a year ago. Through their first 17 telecasts on Fox Sports South and Fox Sports Southeast, the Braves’ ratings increased 64 percent in the Atlanta TV market compared to the same point last season, from a 1.4 average rating then to a 2.3 this season. That includes a 73 percent jump for...
Dickey doesn’t think injury will affect next start
Dickey doesn’t think injury will affect next start

NEW YORK – R.A. Dickey’s first start back at Citi Field since his Mets heyday ended sooner than he expected because of a quadriceps spasm, but the 42-year-old knuckleballer was nonetheless pleased with the results in a 7-5 win Thursday that gave the Braves a two-game sweep of the Mets. Dickey gave up five hits and three runs (two earned)...
More Stories