{}
CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

Fredi leaning on bench in stretch without off-days

|
Fredi leaning on bench in stretch without off-days play video for Fredi leaning on bench in stretch without off-days

ATLANTA -- As the Braves played the 11th of 17 consecutive days out of the All-Star break on Monday, manager Fredi Gonzalez started Jordan Schafer and Phil Gosselin as part of an effort over the next few days to play the reserves and rest the regulars.

"After the All-Star break, we have 17 straight," Gonzalez said. "I'm going to pick this time to play the bench a little bit."

Gonzalez started Gerald Laird and Ryan Doumit on Sunday in place of Evan Gattis and Jason Heyward. Gattis was off Sunday as part of Atlanta's plan to sit him down every three games.

By resting B.J. Upton and Tommy La Stella on Monday -- similar to sitting Andrelton Simmons on Thursday and Heyward on Sunday -- Gonzalez is able to space out the off-days.

Gosselin earned his first start of the season after reaching on an error and lining out in his first two pinch-hit opportunities over the weekend. The infielder aims to build on the .344 batting average he posted in 407 plate appearances with Triple-A Gwinnett this season.

"I figured I might be in there just because it's a day game after a night game, that kind of thing, so I just came here prepared to start," Gosselin said. "I want to get out there and get a few at-bats and help the team any way I can."

Atlanta hopes Gosselin's hot bat will jolt a bench that has struggled to produce this season. Braves pinch-hitters ranked 25th in the Majors with a .165 batting average (19-for-115), and 26th with a .236 on-base percentage entering Monday.

"There's no question," Gonzalez answered when asked if some extra at-bats in the next few days could help the slumping bench. "Play the bench, get them some at-bats."

Joe Morgan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{}
{}
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español