In a starting lineup typical of the day after a team clinches a division championship – or perhaps of a spring-training split-squad game – Braves manager Brian Snitker rested most of his regulars Saturday.
The only regulars in the Braves’ lineup against San Francisco were Ronald Acuna, Josh Donaldson and Dansby Swanson.
The Braves’ batting order for the game: right fielder Acuna leading off, followed by second baseman Adeiny Hechavarria, third baseman Donaldson, left fielder Adam Duvall, catcher Francisco Cervelli, first baseman Austin Riley, shortstop Swanson, center fielder Billy Hamilton and starting pitcher Max Fried.
Among those not in the starting lineup: Freddie Freeman, Ozzie Albies and Nick Markakis.
The Braves, who clinched a second consecutive NL East championship Friday night, have six regular-season games remaining after Saturday. Snitker plans to rest players intermittently over those games to try to ensure they are at their best for the playoffs.
“Guys still have some things they are chasing,” Snitker said, referring to statistical milestones, “and we still want to go out and try to win every game we can. But there are a few guys I’d like to back off the throttle with a little bit. Got to pick and choose when to do that and still play them enough to keep them going.”
Snitker said he plans to rest Donaldson on Sunday in the Braves’ final regular-season home game of the year.
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