02/15/2013 7:07 PM ET
Chipper delays return to Braves until Saturday
By Mark Bowman / MLB.com
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Chipper Jones and Fred McGriff will always be linked as the corner infielders of Atlanta's 1995 World Series champion team. This week they will serve as the guest Spring Training instructors for the Braves.
While McGriff arrived in time to be part of the team's first full-squad workout on Friday, Jones opted to delay his arrival until Saturday.
"I've got a feeling, knowing him, that he stayed away on purpose," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "Since [Friday] was the first day, he didn't want to take that away from [the other players]. I'm not for sure that is the reason. But it wouldn't surprise me."
Jones expressed this view while talking to MLB.com last week.
"I don't want to take anything away from the guys on the team," Jones said last week. "I don't want to be a distraction. To be honest, I don't want to deal with it. We've got to let those guys get their work in. I just don't feel that it is right for me to be down there right now."
When Jones arrives in camp, he will put on the Braves uniform for the first time since he retired at the end of last season. He will spend the week interacting with his former teammates and simply getting a taste of Spring Training. He is expected to stay in the Orlando area until the middle of next week.
"He's a rookie coach," Gonzalez playfully said. "He's got to go by the bathroom and share a locker."
Bolstered by expectations, Braves begin workouts
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- As the Braves were preparing for a meeting before their first full-squad workout at Champion Stadium on Friday, B.J. Upton provided some entertainment by scolding his younger brother Justin for being late.
"B.J. was getting on Justin because we had to wait on him for the meeting to start," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "It's going to be fun watching those guys interact."
After spending the past few weeks listening to the buzz surrounding the offseason additions of the Upton brothers, the Braves were excited to get on the field for their first regular workout on Friday morning.
"Everybody is ready to roll and we're healthy," Gonzalez said. "Ask me in a couple days and that is when you will see the sore hamstrings and the sore backs. That's the kind of things you see during the early days of Spring Training."
Catcher Brian McCann, infielder Paul Janish and right-handed pitcher Brandon Beachy are the only players who will be limited as Spring Training unfolds.
McCann is expected to be sidelined until at least the middle of April while recovering from right shoulder surgery. Janish, who is recovering from left shoulder surgery, is hoping to be cleared to begin playing in exhibition games by the end of March. This would also seemingly position him for a mid-April return.
Beachy hopes to be cleared to begin throwing in a restricted manner off the mound by the end of next week. The 26-year-old right-hander is going through the year-long rehab process that follows Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery.
Because the Braves will be undergoing physicals on Saturday and Sunday, their workouts this weekend will not begin until 1 p.m. ET.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.