NL East Preview: Atlanta Braves

Ryan GaydosSenior Analyst IMarch 24, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 24: Chipper Jones #10 of the Atlanta Braves is congratulated by teammates after hitting a two-run home run during the game against the Philadelphia Phillies on September 24, 2008 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

The Atlanta Braves broke up their great pitching staff a few years ago with the departures of Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine. This year, John Smoltz went to the Red Sox, and last year, Glavine came back from the Mets; however, Glavine still wasn't the same. The only thing the Braves got last year to help out their starting pitching was Javier Vazquez, formerly of the White Sox, and Derek Lowe. It is still not the same as having the big three, and that's why the Braves will finish fourth this year in the NL East.

Keep and Eye on: Jorge Campillo, SP
Personally, I think that Campillo still needs some seasoning. But this year he might bang out 11-14 wins for the Braves. Last year Campillo was 8-7 with 3.91 ERA and 107 strikeouts.

Projected Lineup

1. Kelly Johnson, 2b
2. Yunel Escobar, ss
3. Chipper Jones, 3b
4. Brian McCann, c
5. Jeff Francoeur, rf
6. Casey Kotchman, 1b
7. Brandon Jones, lf
8. Jordan Schafer, cf

Projected Pitching Staff

1. Derek Lowe, rhp
2. Javier Vazquez, rhp
3. Jair Jurrjens, rhp
4. Jorge Campillo, rhp
5. Jo-Jo Reyes, lhp

Projected Bullpen

Mike Gonzalez
Manny Acosta
Blaine Boyer
Boone Logan
Jeff Bennett

Top Prospects

1. Jason Heyward, rf
2. Tommy Hanson
3. Jordan Schafer, cf
4. Freddie Freeman, 1b
5. Gorkys Hernandez, cf