Here at InsiderAdvantage HQ we have a front row ticket to the construction of the new Braves’ stadium. What was once a patch of forest is now an enormous dirt pit, with the foundations of the state of the art Suntrust Park already making themselves evident. More interestingly, we have a bird’s eye view of the tangle of highways and exit ramps that flank the construction zone. Amidst the roads and bridges is another set of construction, preparing the roads for the influx of traffic that the Braves will bring with them. New entrance and exit ramps, a bridge or two, repairs and signs, all the infrastructure work that comes with building a new stadium.
Now, I’ve been critical of the county’s handling of the stadium move in the past. A complete lack of transparency while perpetrating a backroom deal that will demand voters to pay millions in taxes for something they knew nothing about is not a mark of good governing. But that ongoing story is not what this article is about. This is a look at how what happens on the diamond itself will factor into the politics of the new ballpark.
After a wildly disappointing 2014 season, the Braves fired GM Frank Wren and pledged to reshape a roster that flamed out in the late summer. Baseball minds may tell you that the season was foreseeable, something about how when you have a quarter of your payroll wrapped up into two significantly below average players, (Dan Uggla and BJ Upton) it’s going to be difficult to put a good squad together. But this is the Braves we’re talking about here. A team that won 14 straight division titles during the 1990’s and early 2000’s. A fan base that has grown up watching Hall of Famers and expecting playoff appearances and is now faced with a team that appears painfully mediocre.
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