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Inbox: Does Peterson have shot at OD roster?

Beat reporter Mark Bowman answers questions from Braves fans
MLB.com @mlbbowman

Do you think Dustin Peterson has a shot at starting on the Opening Day roster? If so, what happens to him when Ronald Acuna arrives?
-- @sonnyp1986

Peterson, the Braves' No. 16 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, totaled four at-bats within a seven-game span concluding on Friday, and then he hit a monstrous home run in each of the two games that followed. The at-bats total provided a glimpse of what the Braves were planning, and the home runs simply served as a simple reminder of the tremendous potential the right-handed-hitting slugger has when healthy.

Do you think Dustin Peterson has a shot at starting on the Opening Day roster? If so, what happens to him when Ronald Acuna arrives?
-- @sonnyp1986

Peterson, the Braves' No. 16 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, totaled four at-bats within a seven-game span concluding on Friday, and then he hit a monstrous home run in each of the two games that followed. The at-bats total provided a glimpse of what the Braves were planning, and the home runs simply served as a simple reminder of the tremendous potential the right-handed-hitting slugger has when healthy.

Keeping with the assumption Ronald Acuna will be added to Atlanta's roster in mid-April, the Braves need to determine how to best fill left field until he arrives. Though it might be just a couple weeks, I don't think it makes sense to have Peterson at the Major League level unless he's utilized as an everyday player.

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The Braves could open the season with Preston Tucker and Lane Adams platooning in left field. Fully recovered from the shoulder surgery he underwent near the end of the 2016 season, Tucker is a capable left-handed hitter who is at best considered an average defender. Adams provides speed and defensive versatility, but he hasn't enhanced his stock as he has struck out in 12 of his first 30 at-bats in the Grapefruit League entering Monday night.

Another aspect that must be remembered is that Adams is out of options. Would it be worth possibly losing him for nothing in return to simply carry Peterson for the weeks leading up to Acuna's arrival? There might not be an obvious answer, but it's a question that needs to be asked. If Peterson continues to rake over the next couple weeks, there will be a more legitimate reason to speculate the possibility of him being placed on the Opening Day roster. But for now, I'd simply view those two homers as reason to be excited about the power potential he could provide once there's an everyday opportunity for him in the Majors.

• Spring Training: Info | Tickets | Gear

Will this front office fall for Danny Santana's spring numbers?
-- @pushermanRL

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

Without insulting anybody's intelligence by discussing numbers created by small sample sizes against differing variables of competition, let's just say Santana's bid for the Opening Day roster will primarily be influenced by how his attributes fit the Braves' needs.

As a switch hitter with defensive versatility, Santana could certainly be deemed a fit. But it must also be remembered that he is a non-roster invitee for a club that will also likely have to create a 40-man roster spot for Acuna within the next month. A roster spot would also need to be created for Peterson if they choose to carry him into the regular season.

Still, it's Santana's bid that has been enhanced as two left-handed hitting members of the 40-man -- Rio Ruiz and Ryan Schimpf -- have swung and missed with great regularity thus far. Strikeout rate is one Spring Training statistic that should at least draw some merit if it is at an extreme level.

With early offdays allowing for some roster flexibility, the Braves could open the season with a five-man bench. Kurt Suzuki and Charlie Culberson will fill two of those spots, and there's certainly reason to expect Tucker to fill another. The competition for the final two spots would be waged between Adams, Peterson, Santana and Christian Colon, who is also a non-roster invitee who would need to be added to the 40-man.

Video: PIT@ATL: Santana makes scoop for a running catch

Do you think Braves would try to trade Dansby Swanson if he continues to struggle past mid-season?
-- @larryc27041

There's no way to go back in time and reverse the mistake that was made when Swanson was rushed to the Majors from the Double-A level during the latter portion of the 2016 season. So moving forward, the Braves have to do whatever they can to protect and preserve the value of an asset that certainly still possesses future value.

Thus, if Swanson were to struggle through the first six weeks of this season, it would not be surprising to see him sent back to the Minors again. His stay with Triple-A Gwinnett last season was much shorter than planned, but there was some benefit, as he returned to the Majors feeling refreshed and with better plate discipline.

The Braves will remain patient with Swanson during the early portion of this season. But at the same time, they won't be overly patient to the extent where keeping him at the Major League level proves to be detrimental to his future value.

Video: ATL@PIT: Swanson belts a two-run homer to left-center

Are Terry Pendleton and Eddie Perez still part of the organization or did they choose to not accept new jobs with the Braves?
-- @BSpringsJames

Pendleton and Perez have both remained within the organization to essentially serve as roving instructors. They will visit some of the Minor League affiliates throughout the regular season to lend assistance to both the players and coaches.

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.

Atlanta Braves, Lane Adams, Dustin Peterson, Danny Santana, Dansby Swanson, Preston Tucker