Baseball fans tend not to look toward groundhogs for their first sign of spring.
Instead, baseball purists look toward that one day where one magic phrase is uttered: “Pitchers and catchers report to spring training.”
For the Atlanta Braves, reporting day for pitchers and catchers came Tuesday, with the first workout taking place Wednesday morning at Walt Disney World’s Wide World of Sports complex, according to a report from the Orlando Sentinel.
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With Brian Snitker handed the full-time managerial post during the offseason following a strong second half in 2015, there’s extra optimism in the Atlanta clubhouse.
“We haven’t even worked out, and I’m ready to play games,” Snitker told Atlanta television station WXIA on Tuesday. “I think our club, what we did and what we accomplished and how we ended and going into this year, it’s a legit feeling.”
There was one piece of negative news to come out of Braves spring training Tuesday. According to reports from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and mlb.com, second-base prospect Ozzie Albies will miss the first half of spring training in order to recover from offseason elbow surgery triggered by an injury suffered during last year’s Double-A playoffs.
The Braves open their exhibition schedule Feb. 25 against Toronto.