Braves ready for spring training

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ATLANTA, GA (AP) - On a frosty winter day, the Atlanta Braves started getting ready for the rites of spring - tossing around baseballs and jumping into the batting cage to take a few swings at Turner Field.

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It may seem hard to believe, but spring training is just a few weeks away.

Among those turning out for the informal workouts Tuesday with temperatures in the low 40s: closer Craig Kimbrel, slugger Jason Heyward and recovering starter Brandon Beachy, who is coming off major elbow surgery but hopes to be ready by June.

As with most teams this time of year, there's plenty of optimism. The Braves will have to make do without longtime star Chipper Jones, who retired, but they're looking forward to adding free-agent signee B.J. Upton to the lineup.

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