LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- OK, the legend of Atlanta phenom Jason Heyward is growing to crazy -- and wildly fun -- proportions.
"I think we're going to put up some nets over the cars in the parking lot," Braves manager Bobby Cox said following Wednesday's workout. "I'm serious. He's smashing too many.
"He's hitting them off of fenders, bumpers. He hit 'em over the cars today."
Heyward drilled a Coke truck the other day with a liner over the right-field fence. That's the area in which the Braves park their cars as well, and the Coke hit wasn't even close to the most damaging. Heyward also sent a screamer over the fence the other day that smashed the sunroof in the car of Bruce Manno, Atlanta's assistant general manager.
"Cost $3,400 to fix it," Cox said. "It also bent the sunroof frame. We thought it was going to be around $900."
The frame, though, jacked up that bill. And the deductible on the Braves' company car was $2,500.
Cox joked that the club should fine Heyward. But in truth, the Braves could not be more thrilled with what they're seeing from their top-round pick in 2007. Heyward, 20, probably is the best position-player prospect in the game and has a very good chance at cracking the Braves' opening-day lineup.
"You know when he's taking batting practice," Cox said.
You sure do. The buzz is electric.
Sunblock Day: Yes, but also a jacket day. The car temp read 42 degrees at 7:30 this morning and the wind chill was in the 30s. Cox wore a jacket during the entire workout. And it's supposed to get worse Friday.
Likes: Braves starter Tim Hudson, back from Tommy John ligament transfer surgery two Augusts ago, says this is the best his arm has felt in eight years. "I feel like I'm 24 again," Hudson says. Catcher Brian McCann says Hudson has impressive bite again on his two-seam fastball. ... Bobby Cox changing uniform pants four times before Wednesday's workout had even begun. The Braves had a lot going on -- yearbook photos, in-house television stuff -- that resulted in different uniforms. Cox ambled onto the field for the workout wearing white pants while the other 50, 60 players and coaches were wearing gray. So after starting with white, changing to gray for photos and then going back to white, he went back inside to change to gray. More costume changes than Cameron Diaz for the decorated skipper. ... Ozzie Guillen on Twitter might be the greatest thing of the spring. Tweet of the day from Ozzie (at least, in my book): "I love what I'm doing now. Followers, don't worry. I will be here for all of you."
Dislikes: Don't get me started on Avatar. Yes, the special effects were groovy. But I cannot begin to tell you how much I absolutely hated the movie. You watch the special effects for 15 minutes, then you've still got two and a half hours to go. Pedestrian plot, way more violent than I thought and the "battle" scenes were endless. Ugh.
Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:
"Busted flat in Baton Rouge, waiting for a train
"And I'm feeling nearly as faded as my jeans
"Bobby thumbed a diesel down just before it rained
"It rode us all the way to New Orleans
"I pulled my harpoon out of my dirty red bandanna
"I was playing soft while Bobby sang the blues
"Windshield wipers slapping time, I was holding Bobby's hand in mine
"We sang every song that driver knew"
-- Janis Joplin (Kris Kristofferson), Me and Bobby McGee