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The 1997 Atlanta Braves season marked the franchise's 32nd season in Atlanta and 127th overall. The Braves won their sixth consecutive division title, taking the National League East title by 9 games over the second place Florida Marlins. However, the Marlins would later defeat the Braves in the 1997 National League Championship Series. 1997 was the first year that the Braves played their home games in Turner Field, which originally served as a venue for the 1996 Summer Olympics.

1997 Atlanta Braves
National League East Champions
Major League affiliations
Location
Results
Record101–61 (.623)
Divisional place1st
Other information
Owner(s)Time Warner
General manager(s)John Schuerholz
Manager(s)Bobby Cox
Local televisionWTBS
TBS Superstation
(Pete Van Wieren, Skip Caray, Don Sutton, Joe Simpson)
SportSouth
(Tim Brando, Ernie Johnson, Bob Rathbun)
Local radioWSB (AM)
(Pete Van Wieren, Skip Caray, Don Sutton, Joe Simpson)
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Contents

Off seasonEdit

  • November 20, 1996: John Smoltz was signed as a Free Agent with the Atlanta Braves.[1]
  • November 25, 1996: Paul Byrd was traded by the New York Mets with a player to be named later to the Atlanta Braves for Greg McMichael. The New York Mets sent Andy Zwirchitz (minors) (May 25, 1997) to the Atlanta Braves to complete the trade.[2]
  • December 19, 1996: Mike Bielecki was signed as a Free Agent with the Atlanta Braves.[3]
  • March 25, 1997: Kenny Lofton was traded by the Cleveland Indians with Alan Embree to the Atlanta Braves for Marquis Grissom and David Justice.

Regular seasonEdit

Opening day startersEdit

Season standingsEdit

NL East W L Pct. GB Home Road
Atlanta Braves 101 61 0.623 50–31 51–30
Florida Marlins 92 70 0.568 9 52–29 40–41
New York Mets 88 74 0.543 13 50–31 38–43
Montreal Expos 78 84 0.481 23 45–36 33–48
Philadelphia Phillies 68 94 0.420 33 38–43 30–51

Record vs. opponentsEdit

1997 National League Records

Sources: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14]
Team ATL CHC CIN COL FLA HOU LAD MON NYM PHI PIT SD SF STL AL
Atlanta 9–2 9–2 5–6 4–8 7–4 6–5 10–2 5–7 10–2 5–6 8–3 7–4 8–3 7–5
Chicago 2–9 7–5 2–9 2–9 3–9 5–6 4–7 6–5 6–5 7–5 6–5 5–6 4–8 9–6
Cincinnati 2–9 5–7 5–6 5–6 5–7 6–5 6–5 2–9 8–3 8–4 5–6 4–7 6–6 9–6
Colorado 6–5 9–2 6–5 7–4 5–6 5–7 7–4 6–5 4–7 4–7 4–8 4–8 7–4 9–7
Florida 8–4 9–2 6–5 4–7 7–4 7–4 7–5 4–8 6–6 7–4 5–6 5–6 5–6 12–3
Houston 4–7 9–3 7–5 6–5 4–7 7–4 8–3 7–4 4–7 6–6 6–5 3–8 9–3 4–11
Los Angeles 5–6 6–5 5–6 7–5 4–7 4–7 7–4 6–5 10–1 9–2 5–7 6–6 5–6 9–7
Montreal 2–10 7–4 5–6 4–7 5–7 3–8 4–7 5–7 6–6 5–6 8–3 6–5 6–5 12–3
New York 7–5 5–6 9–2 5–6 8–4 4–7 5–6 7–5 7–5 7–4 5–6 3–8 9–2 7–8
Philadelphia 2-10 5–6 3–8 7–4 6–6 7–4 1–10 6–6 5–7 5–6 7–4 3–8 6–5 5–10
Pittsburgh 6–5 5–7 4–8 7–4 4–7 6–6 2–9 6–5 4–7 6–5 5–6 8–3 9–3 7–8
San Diego 3–8 5–6 6–5 8–4 6–5 5–6 7–5 3–8 6–5 4–7 6–5 4–8 5–6 8–8
San Francisco 4–7 6–5 7–4 8–4 6–5 8–3 6–6 5–6 8–3 8–3 3–8 8–4 3–8 10–6
St. Louis 3–8 8–4 6–6 4–7 6–5 3-9 6–5 5–6 2–9 5–6 3–9 6–5 8–3 8–7


RosterEdit

1997 Atlanta Braves
Roster
Pitchers Catchers

Infielders

Outfielders

Manager

Coaches

Player statsEdit

BattingEdit

Starters by positionEdit

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
C Javy López 123 414 122 .295 23 68
1B Fred McGriff 152 564 156 .277 22 97
2B Mark Lemke 109 351 86 .245 2 26
SS Jeff Blauser 151 519 160 .308 17 70
3B Chipper Jones 157 597 176 .295 21 111
LF Ryan Klesko 143 467 122 .261 24 84
CF Kenny Lofton 122 493 164 .333 5 48
RF Michael Tucker 138 499 141 .283 14 56

Other battersEdit

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Andruw Jones 153 399 92 .231 18 70
Eddie Pérez 73 191 41 .215 6 18
Tony Graffanino 104 186 48 .258 8 20
Keith Lockhart 96 147 41 .279 6 32
Danny Bautista 64 103 25 .243 3 9
Mike Mordecai 61 81 14 .173 0 3
Rafael Belliard 72 71 15 .211 1 3
Greg Colbrunn 28 54 15 .278 2 9
Tommy Gregg 13 19 5 .263 0 0
Randall Simon 13 14 6 .429 0 1
Tim Spehr 8 14 3 .214 1 4
Ed Giovanola 14 8 2 .250 0 0
Greg Myers 9 9 1 .111 0 1

PitchingEdit

Starting pitchersEdit

Player G IP W L ERA SO
John Smoltz 35 256 15 12 3.02 241
Tom Glavine 33 240 14 7 2.96 152
Denny Neagle 34 233.1 20 5 2.97 172
Greg Maddux 33 232.2 19 4 2.20 177

Other pitchersEdit

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Kevin Millwood 12 51.1 5 3 4.03 42
Terrell Wade 12 42 2 3 5.36 35
Chris Brock 7 30.2 0 0 5.58 16

Relief pitchersEdit

Player G W L SV ERA SO
Mark Wohlers 71 5 7 33 3.50 92
Alan Embree 66 3 1 0 2.54 45
Brad Clontz 51 5 1 1 3.75 42
Mike Bielecki 50 3 7 2 4.08 60
Mike Cather 35 2 4 0 2.39 29
Paul Byrd 31 4 4 0 5.26 37
Chad Fox 30 0 1 0 3.29 28
Joe Borowski 20 2 2 0 3.75 6
Kerry Ligtenberg 15 1 0 1 3.00 19
John LeRoy 1 1 0 0 0.00 3

Turner FieldEdit

In 1997, the Braves moved into Turner Field. The ballpark was built across the street from the former home of the Braves, Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium, which was demolished in the summer of 1997.

The most popular name choice among Atlanta residents for the new stadium at the time of its construction (according to a poll in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution) was Hank Aaron Stadium. After the ballpark was instead named after Ted Turner, the city of Atlanta renamed the section of Capitol Avenue on which the stadium sits Hank Aaron Drive, giving Turner Field the street number 755, after Aaron's home run total.

After the 1996 Summer Olympics were complete the stadium was officially given as a gift to the Atlanta National League Baseball Club, Inc. (the Atlanta Braves) Ted Turner, then owner of the Braves, agreed to pay a large sum of the cost to build Centennial Olympic Stadium (approximately $170 million of the $209 million bill), if in turn, the stadium was built in a way that it could be converted to a new baseball stadium and that the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games (ACOG) paid for the conversion.[4] This was considered a good agreement for both the Olympic Committee and the Braves, because there would be no use for a permanent 85,000 seat track and field stadium in Downtown Atlanta (as the 71,000 seat Georgia Dome was completed four years earlier by the state of Georgia) and the Braves had already been exploring opportunities for a new stadium.[5]

 
Turner Field exterior from Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard

1997 National League Division SeriesEdit

Houston Astros vs. Atlanta BravesEdit

Atlanta wins the series, 3-0

Game Score Date Location Attendance
1 Houston Astros – 1, Atlanta Braves – 2 September 30 Turner Field 46,467[6]
2 Houston Astros – 3, Atlanta Braves – 13 October 1 Turner Field 49,200[7]
3 Atlanta Braves – 4, Houston Astros – 1 October 3 Astrodome 53,688[8]

1997 National League Championship SeriesEdit

Game Date Visitor Score Home Score Record

(FLA-ATL)

Attendance
1 October 7 Florida 5 Atlanta 3 1-0 49,244
2 October 8 Florida 1 Atlanta 7 1-1 48,933
3 October 10 Atlanta 2 Florida 5 2-1 53,857
4 October 11 Atlanta 4 Florida 0 2-2 54,890
5 October 12 Atlanta 1 Florida 2 3-2 46,496
6 October 14 Florida 7 Atlanta 4 4-2 50,466
Florida wins series 4–2 and advance to the World Series

Farm systemEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/s/smoltjo01.shtml
  2. ^ Paul Byrd Statistics Baseball-Reference.com
  3. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/b/bielemi01.shtml
  4. ^ Sandomir, Richard (July 30, 1996). "At Close of Games, Braves Will Move Into Olympic Stadium". The New York Times. Archived from the original on June 28, 2008. Retrieved July 24, 2008.
  5. ^ Kendrick, Scott. "Turner Field". About.com. Retrieved July 24, 2008.
  6. ^ "1997 NLDS – Atlanta Braves vs. Houston Astros – Game 1". Retrosheet. Retrieved June 16, 2008.
  7. ^ "1997 NLDS – Atlanta Braves vs. Houston Astros – Game 2". Retrosheet. Retrieved June 16, 2008.
  8. ^ "1997 NLDS – Atlanta Braves vs. Houston Astros – Game 3". Retrosheet. Retrieved June 16, 2008.
  9. ^ Johnson, Lloyd, and Wolff, Miles, ed., The Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball, 3rd edition. Durham, North Carolina: Baseball America, 2007

External linksEdit