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By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - B.J. Upton
Joe Torre, Tony La Russa and Bobby Cox made the biggest news on the first day of the winter meetings, an indication of the timeout in the trade-and-signings market.
Brian McCann has reached a deal with the New York Yankees that will pay him $85 million over five years, with a vesting option for the sixth.
They play in a lopsided dome from a best-forgotten era in stadium construction.
By winning two of three against Washington to complete a successful homestand, the Atlanta Braves confirmed what already was obvious: The NL East race is over. The Braves just can't officially announce it.
There's no better reminder that the long-dormant race for the National League East's pennant is finally alive than Scott Hairston. No, that's not a misprint.
They might want to consider setting up a wind farm at Turner Field, because there sure is a stiff breeze coming out of that place most nights.
The Nationals' slow offensive start has been concerning to some, worrisome to others and downright nerve-fraying to certain factions of the fanbase. For plenty, it's been maddening to watch them strike out, swinging or looking, so often. To see them come up small in large situations. To hit the ball on the screws, and right at a waiting fielder.
Chipper Jones retired last year, Bobby Cox the season before that.
Friday evening, as the clock ticks just past 7 p.m. at Nationals Park and the Washington Nationals meet the Atlanta Braves for the first of 19 times this season, Denard Span and B.J. Upton will patrol the same outfield.
White cinder block walls lead the way. Past the security guard in need of a cup of coffee just after 8 a.m. on a cool March morning. Through the makeshift clubhouse kitchen at Space Coast Stadium where three plug-in griddles serve up pancakes and eggs with toppings stored in plastic containers.
Carlos Gomez ran after balls hit into the outfield and zipped from base to base with the same intensity, his big new contract apparently not affecting his style of play.
The Washington Nationals entered spring training with much of their 25-man roster set, and with less than three weeks before Opening Day, the one spot they had in the bullpen appears all but filled.
Justin Upton, acquired with Johnson from Arizona in a seven-player trade on Thursday, had his first news conference on Tuesday. Brother B.J. was in the audience with the brothers' beaming parents, Manny and Yvonne.
Arizona has traded outfielder Justin Upton to the Atlanta Braves in a seven-player deal that sends former All-Star infielder Martin Prado to the Diamondbacks, a person familiar with the situation said Thursday.
The Braves also get third baseman Chris Johnson. Atlanta is giving up four minor leaguers in the deal, including top pitching prospect Randall Delgado. The other minor leagues headed to Arizona are right-hander Zeke Spruill, shortstop Nick Ahmed and first baseman Brandon Drury. Prado can become a free agent after this season.
"We've got a break coming up and I just need a little more time to get healthy," Upton said, adding his recovery "is not a thing that's going to happen immediately."
"No!" he said before the question could be completed.