The Braves have been in the Major Leagues since the 1870s, when they were located in Boston. It was in Boston where the phrase, “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain” was born in the 1940s, after ace pitchers Warren Spahn and Johnny Sain, who won a lot of games
The Braves have been in the Major Leagues since the 1870s, when they were located in Boston. It was in Boston where the phrase, “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain” was born in the 1940s, after ace pitchers Warren Spahn and Johnny Sain, who won a lot of games between them (while the Braves lost a large amount when the duo were not on the mound).
A lot has happened to the team since then. The Braves left Boston after the 1952 season and relocated to Milwaukee, where they won a World Series title in ‘57. The Braves would move again in ‘66 and settle in Atlanta. It was in Atlanta where Hank Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s career home run record. And who can forget what the Braves did under manager Bobby Cox, winning 14 straight division titles, four National League pennants and a World Series title in ‘95.
The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s collection of more than 40,000 three-dimensional pieces contains artifacts that tell the story of the game’s legendary players, moments and triumphs. Beginning this summer and running through the end of 2020, the Hall of Fame will share some of those memorable artifacts through a new limited time experience: Starting Nine, which features nine artifacts from each of the 30 current MLB franchises. Whether you’ve visited before or you’ve always wanted to check it out, this is another great reason to plan a visit to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum -- the spiritual home of America’s Pastime in beautiful Cooperstown, N.Y.
Here is the Starting Nine for the Braves franchise:
1) Hammerin’ Hank’s uniform
Fun facts: Atlanta Braves legend Hank Aaron wore this uniform on April 8, 1974, when he smashed his 715th career home run, a 1-0 pitch off Dodgers left-hander Al Downing. The two-run blast eclipsed Babe Ruth’s career record of 714 and cemented Aaron's place as an American sports icon.
2) Power bat
Fun facts: On July 31, 1954, a dozen seasons before the club moved to Atlanta, Milwaukee Braves first baseman Joe Adcock recorded 18 total bases, a Major League record that stood for nearly half a century. Adcock achieved the feat by hitting four home runs and a double -- each hit coming with this bat that he borrowed from teammate Charlie White.
3) Best manager ever
Fun facts: Braves manager Bobby Cox wore this cap when he earned his 2,000th career victory on Sept. 29, 2004, against the Mets. Cox retired with 2,504 victories, fourth most in Major League history, and an all-time record of appearing in 16 postseasons.
4) Glavine’s shoes
Fun facts: Tom Glavine wore these spikes during the 1995 World Series. His two victories over the Indians, including eight shutout innings in the clinching Game 6, earned him the Series MVP Award.
5) Chipper’s jersey
Fun facts: Chipper Jones wore this jersey in 2012, the final season of a 19-year career with the Braves in which he garnered eight All-Star berths, two Silver Slugger Awards, and a batting title. The switch-hitting third baseman helped lead Atlanta to 11 straight division titles, three NL pennants, and a World Series championship.
6) Justice is served
Fun facts: Wielding this Louisville Slugger, right fielder David Justice accounted for the only run scored in Game 6 of the 1995 World Series, as his solo home run in the sixth inning off reliever Jim Poole ultimately gave the Braves their first championship in Atlanta.
7) Maddux’s shoes
Fun facts: Braves pitcher Greg Maddux wore these spikes during the 1995 regular season, when he posted an astounding 19-2 record with a 1.63 ERA, which led the Major Leagues. Maddux ended up winning his fourth consecutive Cy Young Award.
8) Special milestone
Fun facts: Wearing this Braves jersey on April 22, 2008, John Smoltz became just the 16th big league pitcher to record 3,000 career strikeouts, and the only big leaguer to reach the milestone with at least 100 career saves.
9) Special badges
Fun facts: The Braves trace their National League roots back to Boston, where they played from 1876 to 1952. Around the turn of the century, Beantown fans supported their team as members of the “Boston Royal Rooters” and in 1897 sported special badges.
Bill Ladson has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2002. He covered the Nationals/Expos from 2002-2016. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.