Braves: Final Opening Day Roster Predictions

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We are only a week away from Opening Day, which means it is time for my final roster predictions. There’s been some back and forth since the start of Spring Training; however, the most recent decision to option both Kyle Wright and Jacob Webb gives us a good idea of who will be included on the Opening Day roster. So without further ado, here are the 26 players I believe will take the field against the Phillies on April 1st.


  1. Max Fried
  2. Charlie Morton
  3. Ian Anderson
  4. Drew Smyly
  5. Bryse Wilson

The decision to option Kyle Wright all but confirms Bryse Wilson will be the fifth member of the Braves rotation unless they decide to roll with a four-man rotation for some reason. However, I don’t see that happening. Wilson’s earned this opportunity, and the Braves won’t be eager for their starting pitchers to pile up innings so early in the season.


  1. Ronald Acuna Jr. (RF)
  2. Ozzie Albies (2B)
  3. Freddie Freeman (1B)
  4. Marcell Ozuna (LF)
  5. Travis d’Arnaud (C)
  6. Dansby Swanson (SS)
  7. Austin Riley (3B)
  8. Cristian Pache (CF)
  9. Pitcher’s Spot

Once again, as I’ve reiterated several times, I don’t expect any changes with this group. This should be the starting lineup on Opening Day. Even though Pache has struggled with the stick, his incredible defense has been the difference-maker this spring; he belongs on the major-league roster.


  1. Will Smith
  2. Chris Martin
  3. A.J. Minter
  4. Tyler Matzek
  5. Nate Jones
  6. Luke Jackson
  7. Grant Dayton
  8. Josh Tomlin

This is where things get dicey, but the decision to option Jacob Webb is very telling. To begin the season, the Braves will likely roll with all the players that are out of options. Then, as some begin to struggle and injuries emerge, they will turn to the players in Gwinnett that still have options. This is the right way to go about it, and I’m fairly confident this is how the bullpen will shape up on Opening Day.


  1. Alex Jackson
  2. Ender Inciarte
  3. Pablo Sandoval
  4. Jake Lamb
  5. Ehire Adrianza

The bench could look different on Opening Day, but I took the same approach as I did with the bullpen. If a player must be kept on the 26-man roster or released, they are more likely to be included on the Opening Day roster.

Jackson makes it simply out of need because he certainly hasn’t earned it this spring, collecting just two hits in 21 at-bats, and Inciarte will serve as the team’s fourth outfielder. The Braves could go in several different directions after that, but Sandoval has been electric this spring, with 12 hits in 32 at-bats. He’s deserving of a spot on the Opening Day roster, and I believe Jake Lamb will get the nod as well, even though he has been less impressive this spring.

I gave Ehire Adrianza the final spot because I don’t know how the Braves could possibly leave him off the roster. He has 12 hits, including four doubles and two homers, in 29 at-bats, leading Atlanta in nearly every statistical category. On top of that, he’s an extremely versatile defender. Adrianza deserves an opportunity to begin the season on the roster at the very least.

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