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02/29/08 8:33 PM ET

Glavine returns to spring hill as a Brave

Veteran to make first start with Atlanta since 2002 on Saturday

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Since rejoining the Braves in November, Tom Glavine has been dealing with a lot of "firsts." His first time throwing at Turner Field at the beginning of February received a little less attention than his first workout with the other pitchers and catchers on Feb. 15.

When he starts Saturday's 1:05 p.m. ET Grapefruit League game against the Astros at Osceola County Stadium in Kissimmee, Fla., Glavine will be experiencing yet another first. His next won't come until the first week of the regular season, when he officially makes his return to the Braves.

Still, with Glavine being such an important figure to the Braves organization and all of Major League Baseball, even his Grapefruit League debut is cause for excitement.

"I'm excited," Braves second baseman Kelly Johnson said. "We had Javy [Lopez] showing off [Friday] with his debut. Why don't we have Glavine giving up no hits or something?"

Lopez's return to the Braves on Friday was highlighted with a two-run homer in his first at-bat. In his two-inning stint, Glavine isn't likely going to be able to provide that kind of memorable moment. But he would like to get the spring off to a positive start.

Glavine, who previously pitched in Atlanta from 1987-2002, earned his 300th victory while playing for the Mets last year. He returned to the Braves as a free agent in November.

Despite struggling in his last three starts, Glavine still enjoyed a strong 2007 season. He went 13-8 with a 4.45 ERA and recorded 23 quality starts, which ranked fifth in the National League.

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.