• Craig Kimbrel completed a perfect seventh inning on Monday in his first appearance since returning from the World Baseball Classic. Gonzalez said Kimbrel stayed on a normal schedule during his time with Team USA and appears set to start the regular season.
• Right-handed reliever Jordan Walden completed a pain-free live batting practice session on Monday. Walden, who has been sidelined by a bulging disc in his back, will make his debut on Wednesday against the Pirates. If he is not ready at the start of the season, Anthony Varvaro will likely get the final bullpen spot on the Opening Day roster.
• There are some lingering concerns about Juan Francisco's ability to consistently hit offspeed pitches and left-handed pitchers. But with three home runs in the past four games, Francisco has strengthened his bid to begin the season as Atlanta's starting third baseman. But Gonzalez said it is too early to declare a winner between Francisco and Chris Johnson.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.