ATLANTA -- While sitting in the dugout at Turner Field and glancing toward a sky that looked more and more menacing, Braves manager Bobby Cox received a lighthearted note from his star outfielder.
"Dear Bobby Cox. I respect you like a father. But if there's going to be a 2½-hour rain delay, please consider someone else."
Signed, "Andruw Jones."
As it turned out, Jones didn't have to worry about a late night. The Atlanta-Florida Marlins game was rained out Saturday, though the teams did wait around for nearly 2½ hours in the futile hope of getting started.
The Braves managed to get in batting practice and infield drills before a thick line of storms moved in about two hours before the game. The Marlins never got on the field.
At first, Braves officials thought there would be enough of a break in the storms to get in the game during the evening. The field was briefly uncovered, but the rain picked up again and it became apparent that the showers wouldn't let up anytime soon.
"We tried to get it in," Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "They took off the tarp and put it back on, but you can't fool Mother Nature."
No makeup date was immediately scheduled. The Marlins return to Atlanta two more times this season, with a three-game series in June the most likely time to reschedule the game. The teams have another three-game set at Turner Field in September.
Florida's scheduled starter, Scott Olsen, will now go Sunday in the series finale, bumping the rest of the rotation back a day. But the Braves decided not to shake up their order, which means that Kyle Davies won't pitch until Wednesday against the Chicago Cubs.
Tim Hudson (1-0 with a 0.64 ERA) will make his scheduled start Sunday, while Chuck James and John Smoltz are still on tap to work a two-game series at Washington that follows.
"Huddy doesn't like to have too much rest," Cox said. "He wants to go on four" days between starts.
The Braves are off to a 7-3 start, but the injuries are starting to pile up on the pitching staff. Mike Hampton is out for the year and the reliever Chad Paronto went on the 15-day disabled list before the game.
Paronto strained a muscle near his groin while throwing a pitch Friday night, a game won by the Marlins 11-4 in Gonzalez's return to Atlanta. He previously spent four years as the Braves' third-base coach.
In another move, the Braves optioned left-hander Macay McBride to the minors to deal with control problems. He has given up a staggering 11 walks in just three innings, a troubling development considering the Braves were counting on him to fill an important setup role in the bullpen.
"We had to make that change," Cox said. "It's important that Mac get some innings. It's there, and we want to make sure we don't lose him."
Atlanta recalled right-hander Peter Moylan and lefty Steve Colyer from Triple-A Richmond to fill the openings on their 12-man staff.
McBride had no complaints about his demotion to Richmond, saying a mechanical problem in his delivery is throwing off his control. He wants to step more toward the plate instead of first base.
The 24-year-old McBride went 4-1 with a 3.65 ERA last season. He had some control issues -- 32 walks in 56 2-3 innings -- but nothing like the start to this year.
"It's something very simple, but it's tough to work on it here when you're trying to win," McBride said. "I'm going to go fix it and I'll be back."