Braves: Uggla looked to for leadership

BY JEFF BERLINICKE ASSOCIATED PRESS KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) – The Atlanta Braves have to replace Chipper Jones in the clubhouse, too. Jones became the team leader as John Smoltz, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux departed Atlanta. The void left behind following Jones' retirement could be filled in part by second baseman Dan Uggla, who took over Jones' corner locker in Atlanta's spring training clubhouse.
Catcher Brian McCann, coming back from shoulder surgery, also could be looked upon to provide direction. "I don't know if I am the leader or not," said Uggla, who hit .220 with 19 homers last year. "We are going to miss Chipper and his hitting a lot, but also his leadership skills. I can't say I am the new leader of the Braves. It will be taken care of collectively. We'll miss him, but it isn't just all about one guy. I'll do what I need to do." First baseman Freddie Freeman's locker is next to Uggla's. Freeman, who worked out with Uggla during the offseason, said he was inspired by Uggla's work ethic and leadership abilities. "He worked me hard, but I saw how hard he worked, and I think it will pay off," Freeman said as Uggla looked on, rolling his eyes. "I'm going to be a better player because of the work we did during the offseason." Uggla said he isn't doing anything differently but more teammates are working with him. "I guess if they see my work ethic it might mean something," Uggla said. "I just want the guys to watch how I play and hope it rubs off." Uggla didn't think much about his locker placement. "I talked to Chipper about it after I found out about it," Uggla said. "I figure I'll only have it for about a year and I wasn't sure if I was the right person, but Chipper told me to take it. Maybe I am only borrowing it." © 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


More Sports

High School Basketball

Cougars snap five-game losing streak

Newnan’s boys basketball team snapped a five-game losing streak in Region 3-AAAAAA on Friday, pulling out a 54-48 victory on the road ... Read More


High School Basketball

Heritage School sweeps Holy Spirit

The Heritage School basketball teams proved Thursday they can win games even when they don’t play their best. Heritage swept a doubleh ... Read More


High School Basketball

Trinity boys rout Young Americans

Trinity Christian’s boys basketball team got a chance to rinse out the taste of a disappointing loss to Bethlehem Christian this week ... Read More


Newnan able to pull out first county swim title

Newnan High swim coach Courtney Stillwell had plenty of strategy Wednesday at the annual Coweta County Tri-Meet at the Summit YMCA. The vete ... Read More


High School Basketball

Lady Cougars unable to claw back against Pebblebrook

Newnan basketball teams entered Tuesday's Region 3-AAAAAA contests with Pebblebrook hoping its home-court advantage might just work in its f ... Read More

High School Swimming

County meet chance for bragging rights, state times

All three local high school swim teams have the same agenda tonight when they return to the Summit Family YMCA for the annual Coweta County ... Read More