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Atlanta Braves news and links: John Smoltz takes his place in Cooperstown

Braves add another pitcher to the Hall of Fame, and more!

Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

Braves News:

Braves avoid sweep with 3-2 win over Cardinals

The Braves, now 46-52, were able to narrowly avoid a weekend sweep from the Cardinals on Sunday in thanks to Matt Wisler's performance on the mound. Wisler pitched seven innings, with just two earned runs on seven hits. The Braves' offense scored just enough runs for the win - with RBIs coming from Cameron Maybin (2-for-5), Ryan Lavarnway (1-for-4) and Adonis Garcia (1-for-4). The Braves are now tasked with a three-game series in Baltimore against the Orioles, starting today.

John Smoltz completes the "Big Three's" trip to Cooperstown

The 1990's were a wonderful era for the Atlanta Braves, especially the year of 1995. The unparalleled success which the Braves saw came on the backs of three dominant starting pitchers - Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux and John Smoltz. As of Sunday, all three are members of baseball's Hall of Fame. Smoltz, the final of the three to be enshrined in baseball's finest fraternity, pitched 20 years with Atlanta, both as a starter and as a closer. A 2015 Hall of Fame inductee, he finally earned the chance to join an exclusive club, one that two of his former rotation-mates are already in.

"I think the mutual respect was off the charts for what each person could do," Smoltz said. "And the fact that you had to eat a little humble pie along the way was good for us and pushed us in a way that you’re probably not ever going to see again, in a rotation where guys stick together for 10 years. I don’t know what it would have been like if I didn’t have those guys as teammates. I learned a lot."

Pedro Martinez' Chipper Jones story

Pedro Martinez will go down in history as one of the most dominant pitchers of his time (a time dominated by steroid-using power hitters, no less) but he'll also be remembered as one of he most animated, electric and entertaining personalities in the game. Among the hundreds of Pedro Martinez stories out there, this one may stick out the most to Atlanta Braves fans.

MLB News:

Four legends enshrined in baseball's Hall of Fame

Sunday was a day for the ages for Major League Baseball. No, not because Mike Trout smashed a grand slam, but because four of the greatest players of all time took their place in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Three of the best pitchers of the 1990's-200's - Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Randy Johnson, along with one of the most versatile and talented players in an era dominated by steroids, Craig Biggio, were inducted. The ceremony saw legends from all eras descend on Cooperstown, New York, to pay tribute to the newest members of the greatest team in all of baseball.

Kansas City Royals acquire Johnny Cueto

To all other American League teams looking to make a deep playoff run: good luck. The Kansas City Royals, arguably the best team in the AL, improved their team in leaps and bounds on Sunday by acquiring former Cincinnati Reds' ace, and one of the top arms on the trade market, Johnny Cueto. The Royals sent Brandon Finnegan, John Lamb and Cody Reed to the Reds for Cueto. Cincinnati will also be sending money to Kansas City to help pay the rest of Cueto's contract.

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