Building a Braves 60-Man Roster…Sue me, that’s What I’m calling it.

Well…we went from 40 to 50 and now, 60. Holy smokes, that’s a lot of players. Today’s piece, “Building a Braves 60-Man Roster”, will take a look at the 30 guys that I think will likely be the people breaking camp with the Braves, and then the 30 extra that will make up the taxi squad.

While it’s been over a month since I wrote this piece, I think it still holds up and my 30-man hasn’t changed. Here’s list:

Building a Braves 60-Man Roster: The First 30

POSITION PLAYERS

  1. Travis d’Arnaud
  2. Freddie Freeman
  3. Ozzie Albies
  4. Dansby Swanson
  5. Austin Riley
  6. Marcell Ozuna
  7. Ender Inciarte
  8. Ronald Acuña Jr.
  9. Nick Markakis
  10. Adam Duvall
  11. Adeiny Hechavarria
  12. Tyler Flowers
  13. Johan Camargo
  14. Charlie Culberson

THE PITCHING

  1. Mike Soroka
  2. Cole Hamels
  3. Mike Foltynewicz
  4. Max Fried
  5. Mark Melancon
  6. Will Smith
  7. Shane Greene
  8. Chris Martin
  9. Luke Jackson
  10. Darren O’Day
  11. Sean Newcomb
  12. Felix Hernandez
  13. Kyle Wright
  14. Patrick Weigel
  15. Phil Pfeifer
  16. Tyler Matzek

Breakdown: I still feel like the Braves could really use a LH bench bat, but the job is Culberson’s to lose for now. He’ll likely have to rework his contract to provide Braves opportunity remove him from the active roster without losing him. Today’s the day when the free agent freeze comes up, and I have little doubt the Braves will try to invite to camp (or sign very rapidly) another LH hitter like Ben Zobrist or Scooter Gennett.

Building a Braves 60-Man Roster: The Next 20

I’d already laid out a 50-man squad back in May, so I’ll keep the 20 I’d listed previously. Here they are:

  1. Alex Jackson
  2. Ian Anderson
  3. William Contreras
  4. Tucker Davidson
  5. Jasseel De La Cruz
  6. A.J. Minter
  7. Chad Sobotka
  8. Touki Toussaint
  9. Jacob Webb
  10. Bryse Wilson
  11. Cristian Pache
  12. Huascar Ynoa
  13. Chris Nunn
  14. Chris Rusin
  15. Shea Langeliers
  16. Rafael Ortega
  17. Yonder Alonso
  18. Josh Tomlin
  19. Peter O’Brien
  20. Riley Unroe

Breakdown

This list includes the rest of the 40-man and several non-roster invitees in Ian Anderson, Chris Nunn, Chris Rusin, Shea Langeliers, Rafael Ortega, Yonder Alonso, Josh Tomlin, Peter O’Brien, and Riley Unroe. It’s also worth noting that these lists assume the above NRI’s that were brought in from outside the org do not have opt-outs, of which I’m sure some do.

Chad Sobotka and Jacob Webb are listed here, but I’m not sure they break camp on the 40-man. Grant Dayton has been intentionally left off this list as I think he’s DFA’d fairly soon.

Building a Braves 60-Man Roster: The Final 10

This is where it gets interesting. Do the Braves stock their last 10 of the taxi squad with on the cusp prospects? Maybe. Or do they invite a bunch of veterans to camp, see if they stick on the squad. I think both. And while I expect news to come soon that might change this list, this is my first guess:

  1. Drew Waters
  2. Yangervis Solarte
  3. Kyle Muller
  4. Trey Harris
  5. Braden Shewmake
  6. Pete Kozma
  7. CJ Alexander
  8. Thomas Burrows
  9. Bryce Ball
  10. Justin Dean

Breakdown

I feel like the Braves will keep a veteran SS on the taxi squad in case of a Dansby injury, and Kozma fits that category. Solarte has value in that he can play a few positions and he’s possessed a good stick in the past (remember, he’s also coming off some serious hardships as his wife past away from cancer so his head might’ve been the cause for a skillset collapse). The rest are a bit self-explanatory. Some eyes might pop seeing Bryce Ball’s name on this list, however he’s soon to be 22 and if the Braves want his bat sometime in 2021, he’s going to have to see some good pitching this year, even if it’s intrasquad games. Justin Dean might be a stretch here, as he only played in Rome last year, but he’s a real speed threat and could be a postseason weapon as the 26th man on the roster.

Let it be known that this 60 man squad has 20 of Braves Journal’s Top 30 prospects and that feels about the right amount. There’s justification for carrying more on the prospect list including fresh draftees, over some of the veterans and that will likely happen as some of the NRIs will be released or purchased by other teams. That’s why this is a first draft!

Final Thoughts

With the roster going from 30 to 26 in a matter of weeks, it’s going to be very important for all GMs to have some real flexibility within their 30 and taxi squad. However, from what we know now, that flexibility stops at 40 men. This might be another reason we see some DFA’s and/or a trade (or 2) before the season starts, to provide extra flexibility to test out other depth.

Thanks for reading “Building a Braves 60-Man Roster”. Check out all of our offseason analysis here and our Braves Journal prospect lists here.

Author: Ryan Cothran

Ryan is the site editor and manager of Braves Journal. Follow him on Twitter.

25 thoughts on “Building a Braves 60-Man Roster…Sue me, that’s What I’m calling it.”

  1. Bringing over the last few comments:

    Tdsays:
    June 25, 2020 at 7:19 pm
    Yeah, one thing for certain, owners that sign players to big contracts based mostly on 2020 results are stupid. It’s going to happen though. Hopefully we will buy low on players who didn’t have a great 2020.

    MikeMsays:
    June 25, 2020 at 7:50 pm
    Has anybody heard anything about how a season without fans in the park might hurt the Braves? As I understood it, two things known about the team finances are that they planned to make a good deal off the facilities around the park (which are useless this year) and the Braves make less money off TV revenue than most contenders.

    This of course is all moot when you remember how much damn money Liberty Media has and could spend if they wanted. I’m just already dreading the company line this offseason about how the team can’t spend.

    Timosays:
    June 26, 2020 at 5:41 am
    @16 Agree, will hurt the Braves especially when you also add loss of revenue from The Battery.

    MikeMsays:
    June 26, 2020 at 8:14 am
    @17 Yeah that’s what I’m afraid of. That their next excuse to scream poor will be no Battery income. I’ll be the first to call bullshit when they do.

    Also, I haven’t been on here in a few months – have we all sufficiently made fun of the Rangers horrible new stadium and Battery-type complex? It is uuuuuuugly.

  2. The problem that I had when completing this exercise was the 30 going to 26 fairly quickly (and I feel that this might be something that gets revisited before the season starts). However, if there’s no limitations between players being optioned to the taxi squad and called back up to the MLB team with exception being that said player has to be on the 40-man, then that should work out in the Braves favor. If a guy like Luke Jackson can be on the 30, 28, or 26 man, pitch 3 days in a row, then get optioned to the taxi squad, that would be wonderful. However, if it’s limited to guys that have options, that’s a problem.

  3. If I am a hotel like the Omni I am getting ready because you can watch games from the rooms. I know the Braves dont see revenue directly but I am still working on my plan.

  4. @5: So Kozma can buy a Mercedes Benz while his friends all drive Porsches. He just needs to try a little bit harder.

  5. First time back on this site since March or so…My apologies for not being an avid reader. Love my Braves with all my heart, but the last few months have been so sad and weird……BUT, I am so excited!!! Can’t wait for the season to start!! Mile high expectations- This is the year!!!!

  6. Ryan,
    As a 20 year follower of this site, I can say that the writing and analysis is as good as ever, except for when Mac wrote alone.
    Thank you for keeping us engaged.
    Go Braves!

  7. @9
    Thanks, Kevin! We will forever live in that man’s shadow, and I’m completely ok with that!

  8. This thread will stay up today.

    I expect that today will be an interesting day across MLB and we could see some FA signings.

  9. Lots of catchers. I guess they need bodies to catch the taxi squad workouts/simulated games.

  10. Ok, I’ll take a crack at the Opening Day 30 man roster.

    (Vs. RHP lineup)
    1. RF Acuña
    2. 2b Albies
    3. 1b Freeman
    4. LF Ozuna
    5. DH Markakis
    6. SS Swanson
    7. C D’Arnaud
    8. 3b Camargo
    9. CF Inciarte

    Bench

    C Flowers
    OF Duvall
    3b/OF Riley
    IF Hechavarria
    UT Culberson
    C Jackson

    Starters

    RHP Soroka
    LHP Fried
    LHP Hamels
    RHP Folty
    RHP Felix

    Bullpen

    RHP Melancon
    LHP Smith
    RHP Greene
    LHP Newcomb
    RHP Martin
    RHP Jackson
    RHP O’Day
    LHP Minter
    RHP Wilson
    RHP Wright

    Maybe drop Culberson and carry a 16th pitcher. I think carrying a pinch runner type on the bench could be useful.

  11. Perhaps they must designate which players are already in the organization by the deadline? It’s possible the other 3 draftees, for instance, have agreed to terms but not yet signed? They may be looking in the remaining free agent bin as well.

  12. Allright, I went and looked it up: players already in team control may be added to the 60-man at any time but once removed from the list may not be re-added (I think this explains Brown and Morales as they will be dropped after the spring training 2: Electric Boogaloo is over). Also, only players on the 60-man may be traded, so your prospect chits need to make the cut

  13. I dreamt last night that I saw Chipper hurt his knee running between first and second, though he managed to hobble to second before being tagged. I then realized how tough this 60 game season was going to be without him. With that, I woke up… #ReadyForTheDamnSeason

  14. @23–your dream deals with a real concern I’ve heard expressed—that the abbreviated “spring” training may lead to more muscle pulls and strains than we are used to seeing in a normal season. So maybe the younger players will have an advantage over the aging veterans.
    But I also think this is another reason to sign Julio Franco. He’s in better shape than the kids 40 years his junior. I imagine his muscles refuse to be pulled or strained.

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