Salty Dog's Arizona Fall League Journal

Braves' catching prospect Jarrod Saltalamacchia provides's premium subscribers with an inside look on his experience in the Arizona Fall League.

Hey everybody!

Just a little inside information from out in the Fall League. The competition out here is very good. I'm just drained after every game because I have to think about what pitch to call because all of the hitters can hit. Every hitter that steps up to the plate has the potential to put the ball out of the ballpark; especially out here because the ball flies.

Overall though the guys in this league are pretty cool. My team consists of players from the Dodgers, Diamondbacks, Devil Rays, Oakland A's, and, of course, the Braves. It's pretty neat playing with new people from different organizations. Every organization is different, and I suppose that's why it is neat. Just something different.

Our day is the same as during the season. We get to the field at 9:00 am on day games. We travel, take BP, infield, and then play at 1:00. The competition level like I said earlier is very good, and I think I am holding up very well. I just take every game like it is a regular season game, which is hard because the atmosphere out here is so relaxed. All of the guys on the team are either big leaguers or will be next year. So there is not much basic fundamental work needed, meaning the guys show up they know what they need to do and they do it. And that is good, less clutter.

The Braves' guys are doing well. Paul Bush has made a couple of starts, including opening night. His command is good and all pitches are working. Ryan Basner has made a few relief appearances and has been lights out. Same for Glenn Tucker. Josh Burrus has had a sore shoulder, but rallied back today with his first homerun of the season. Jonathan Schuerholz has been playing third and second and keeping us entertained with his off field humor (especially with the bouncing helmet that somehow managed to backfire onto the top of his head).

As for me, I am still catching and continue to improve my game, which is key to making it to the big leagues.

Talk to you soon.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia was recently named as the top player in the Carolina League in 2005 by Baseball America, as well as the catcher on BA's minor league All-Star Team. "Salty Dog" was also named BravesCenter's Player of the Year in the Braves' farm system.

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