2008 Florida Spring Training Tour, Day 2 (Atlanta Braves)

BY: T.C.

On Saturday, February 23rd, I made my way to the Atlanta Braves spring training complex at Disney.  I arrived around 8 am again, and went to the ticket window to purchase my ticket.  It cost $11.75 for an adult to get in to watch PRACTICE.  Yet another great value at the home of the smiling rat-errr, mouse.  Once I got over the sticker shock, I walked in the gates and looked for the ‘graphers.  I saw a group of people huddled out on the berm in center field and figured that was the place to be.  There wasn’t any activity for the first ½ hour I was out there, so I decided to go ask a groundskeeper what was going on.  He informed me that Saturday was physical day and that players weren’t reporting until 10 am for a 1 pm practice.  Oh well, it was time to go get breakfast again.  After getting my belly full at IHOP, I went back to the complex at around 10 am.  Players slowly began trickling in. 

As they enter the complex, there are two ways for them to go.  The shorter way forces them to walk past the fans lined up along the fence (about 4 feet high) where I was standing.  The longer way allows them to avoid fans.  Most players took the shorter way and were pretty accommodating for autograph requests.  As the day went on, it began raining on and off (pretty hard at times).  The rain was kind of a pain in the ass, but it also chased off a lot of fans (which was kind of nice).  Luckily, I made a $5 umbrella purchase at Wal Mart the day before, so I was able to stay out along the fence with 5-10 other fans.  At the location where I was standing, we were able to get players entering and leaving the complex, as well as players that were going out to or returning from the batting cages.  A diagram of the key autograph areas can be found below:

Braves ST

Here are my successes from the Braves’ camp:

  • Chris Chambliss, 1 RMLB
  • Brent Lillibridge, 2 cards, 1ROMLB
  • Jordan Schafer, 1 card, 1RMLB
  • Terry Pendleton, 1 card, 1 ROMLB
  • Jair Jurrjens, 1  RMLB
  • Manny Acosta, 2 cards, 1RMLB
  • Yunel Escobar, 2 cards, 1 RMLB
  • Jeff Francoeur, 1 ROMLB
  • Blaine Boyer, 1 RMLB
  • Mark Teixeira, 1 card, 1 ROMLB
  • Clint Sammons, 3 cards
  • Will Ohman, 2 cards
  • Joe Borchard, 3 cards 
  • Josh Anderson, 1 card

Overall, this park kind of sucks for autographs.  I happened to get lucky on a day where there weren’t a lot of fans because of poor weather.  For $11.75, it’s hard to recommend wasting a day at this park to someone (unless they are spending more than a week in Florida and/or want to do a trip to another Disney park in the afternoon).

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