Because a drayage load can mean a few different things, confusion among carriers is common. Many carriers link drayage with going into a port, but that isn't always true. While all drayage loads typically originate from a port of entry, there are often several legs of a drayage journey before a container turns up at its final stop. Legs of a drayage load may include:
You may be thinking, what's so important about drayage? It's such a small step in the container storage transport process. In reality, it's an integral piece needed in the logistics industry and a crucial part of U.S. supply chain management.
To truly understand the importance of drayage, let's use flowers as an example. Most cut flower shipments enter the market from areas in South America until they end up at Dutch auction houses. Once there, wholesalers purchase flowers in bulk and send those products to retail outlets worldwide. Because flowers are perishable, they typically need to be refrigerated and are often shipped in reefer containers. These refrigerated vessels must maintain a certain temp to prevent loss.
Drayage companies like RelyEx allow flower shippers to send their products from Argentinian ports to airports in the Netherlands with peace of mind because their products are protected. The only way to accomplish this feat is with the help of swift, meticulous port drayage services. Drayage companies allow flower shippers to send their products from Argentinian ports to airports in the Netherlands with peace of mind, because their products are protected. The only way to accomplish this feat is with the help of swift, meticulous port drayage services.
If port drayage is compromised, it can cause delays and even fines. You know the packages you get delivered to your front door from apps like Amazon? Without drayage and drayage brokers, one or two-day shipping times wouldn't even be possible.
As a multi-billion-dollar industry in the U.S. alone, it seems like drayage shipping issues shouldn't exist. But the fact is inefficiencies and congestion are still major problems at ports. Whether it's a lack of carriers, absent chassis, or overburdened terminals, delays lead to missed deadlines, lost revenue, and worse.
But anytime challenges exist, so too do innovative solutions.QUOTE REQUEST
At RelyEx, we like to consider ourselves problem solvers. The nature of the container drayage industry presents new challenges every day, but we're firm believers that there's a solution to every hurdle we encounter. And while some drayage businesses implement a reactive approach, RelyEx customers choose us for our proactive mindset. We take pride in solving your company's drayage challenges to help you avoid frustrating fees, missed expectations, and delayed shipments. We strive to make every transaction successful and streamlined by partnering with shippers who prioritize transparent, prompt, and accurate communication.
RelyEx approaches your business from the customer's perspective - a unique approach that helps us provide high-quality, effective drayage services. We've been in the customers' shoes, know their pain points, and because of that, provide first-hand solutions to stressful supply chain issues. With over 30 years of collective knowledge, our team excels in:
Our varied, high-level drayage shipping experience helps us achieve our overarching goal: expertly managing your freight movement needs. That way, you can direct your time and focus on growing the core aspects of your business while we handle the heavy lifting. Throw in proactive planning to avoid bottleneck situations and strong communication for transparent customer relations, and you can see why so many companies trust RelyEx.
When it comes to shipping logistics, it only takes one mistake by a mediocre worker to disrupt your business. That's why, at RelyEx, we pride ourselves on forming and nurturing relationships with carriers who match our standards of care. Our founding partner started his career transporting freight for companies as an on-demand carrier. He uses that knowledge to maximize the resources of our carriers so that our customer's expectations aren't just met - they're exceeded.
Based in the port city of Atlanta, RelyEx has a keen understanding of the challenges of managing the inbound and outbound flow of containers. Our team of container drayage experts provides your business with unique solutions to nuanced shipping problems, minimizing demurrage and ensuring the successful delivery of your freight.
Customers choose RelyEx because:
Some drayage brokers don't care how customers feel about their service as long as they sign a contract and get paid. As a solutions-oriented team, RelyEx takes the opposite approach. We're motivated by the opportunity to overachieve for our customers and to provide them with the best logistics experience possible. With professional experience as carriers and shippers ourselves, we know the roadblocks and challenges you're facing. We excel at mapping out the best plans of action to solve those problems. But that's just the start.
Our tracking experts monitor and manage every aspect of your drayage shipment from booking to delivery, 24/7. Once booked, we look for the availability of your containers hourly once they're at port. When they arrive, our team acts quickly to access your storage containers when they're available.
Plus, RelyEx ensures your company's requirements are met by the carrier during loading and delivery and provide necessary documentation as fast as possible. With real-time tracking updates and access to our customer service professionals, your team has complete visibility throughout the shipping process.
Over the years, RelyEx has built a strong network of drayage carriers, transloading locations, and container storage spaces to provide you with the best possible options to match your drayage service needs. We know that searching for quality service presents an added layer of complexity and stress to our customers. That's why we work hard to take that off your plate by connecting you with our reliable shipping partners.
With a background moving freight as an on-demand carrier, our founding partner understands how to maximize the resources and equipment of our carriers to match your needs.
Like other industries, the global logistics space is complex. Mistakes will be made, and problems will happen. With those truths in mind, RelyEx has built its reputation as problem solvers. Unlike other drayage companies, we don't shy away from this industry's complexities because we take pride in solving problems. Even better, we aim to do what's needed to avoid those problems altogether.
As your logistics partner, we will provide your company with accurate, transparent, and prompt communication. If there are unexpected issues, we'll notify you immediately and will provide several options to remedy the problem. We even offer custom reporting for large clients who need at-the-moment updates and quick access to shipment documentation.
Why let the unpredictability of your industry dictate your success? With a background working in manufacturing, our founders are familiar with the demands of managing production schedules and sales orders. That experience makes it abundantly clear to us that every business and industry is different. If you struggle with seasonal surges or other factors, our team supports your business with a mapped-out plan and schedule, so you stay ahead of the game.QUOTE REQUEST
Typically, shippers need four specific documents to clear shipments through customs: A Bill of Lading (or BOL), a commercial invoice, a packing list, and an arrival notice. Seasoned drayage brokers like RelyEx are used to preparing these documents, but new shippers tend to miss this step due to inexperience.
If a shipper only pays for part of their shipment, a vessel operator may refuse to release their freight until their bill is fully paid. Payment delays lead to cargo detention at the port of entry, which triggers demurrage charges.QUOTE REQUEST
Paperwork is needed when you're shipping goods with a drayage company. When documents like the Certificate of Origin or Bill of Lading arrive at their destination late, you can expect demurrage fees. RelyEx avoids this situation entirely by being proactive when submitting paperwork.
Additional causes for demurrage fees can include:
At RelyEx, we know first-hand how stressful supply chain problems can be for business owners. Though drayage shipping might seem minor on the surface, it affects every stage of your shipping process. And when inevitable hurdles manifest, RelyEx propels you over the proverbial roadblocks with a proactive mindset and a passion for challenging projects. We believe that all problems have a solution, and our unique vantage point allows us to provide first-hand solutions to customers in a wide array of industries.
When it comes to your business, don't settle for anything less than RelyEx. Contact our office today to learn more about how we make your shipping experience streamlined and stress-free.843-885-3082
Before the trade deadline passed on Tuesday, the Minnesota Vikings made two trades, announced the placement of Kirk Cousins on Injured Reserve and the team's starting QB in his place.Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell announced rookie Jaren Hall will make his first NFL start Sunday at Atlanta.No quarterback has started more games than Cousins' 136 games since 2015. But with Cousins out and backup Nick Mullens on Injured Reserve for at least one more week, Hall has an opportunity to showcase what made him a standout at BYU....
Before the trade deadline passed on Tuesday, the Minnesota Vikings made two trades, announced the placement of Kirk Cousins on Injured Reserve and the team's starting QB in his place.
Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell announced rookie Jaren Hall will make his first NFL start Sunday at Atlanta.
No quarterback has started more games than Cousins' 136 games since 2015. But with Cousins out and backup Nick Mullens on Injured Reserve for at least one more week, Hall has an opportunity to showcase what made him a standout at BYU.
"There will be tremendous opportunity for growth on a play-to-play, drive-to-drive and hopefully game-to-game basis that will allow us to watch Jaren grow before our very eyes," O'Connell said. "I think he's physically capable, I think he's mentally capable, and I think he's made up of the right stuff. I love the way he's attacked whatever role he's been in throughout the season. And like I said, this is the time when you do all those things that you do, when nobody's really counting on you or thinking that you're potentially going to be on the field, all those lonely hours or lonely moments where he's with the coaches, grinding on some extra work here and there – this is where you see the benefit of that. I'm excited to see the way Jaren goes about the week and performs on Sunday."
Hall, 25, has experience replacing an established starter. He backed up current Jets quarterback Zach Wilson for two seasons at BYU. He went 8-2 in his first season following Wilson and then followed that up with a career-best statistical season.
In two seasons as a full-time starter, Hall accounted for 53 total touchdowns and just 11 interceptions, along with 798 rushing yards and nine scores. As a junior last season, he posted career highs for completions (248), attempts (376), passing yards (3,171), passing touchdowns (31), rushes (86) and rushing yards (348).
Sunday will be the first time Hall has started a game since the Vikings preseason finale. Hall played in that entire game and finished 17-of-28 passing for 178 yards, with one touchdown, an interception and a passer rating of 76.2. He also had six carries for 21 rushing yards.
Hall led consecutive touchdown drives to start that game, building a 14-point lead in the game's first 14 minutes. He opened with a 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive. The second series included three pass completions of 14 or more yards and was capped by his 5-yard touchdown pass.
That start occurred in August and was his first and last preseason starting opportunity. Two months later, Hall is set to start a road game against the NFC South-leading Falcons.
Offensive Coordinator Wes Phillips said he expects Hall to be ready for his first NFL start.
"Jaren has a nice maturity about him," Phillips said. "It's not always the guys that are a little bit older and married and already have a kid already, but it certainly helps.
"He's not a wild man," Phillips added. "He's about football and family and faith, and he's a very grounded individual. I don't think he's going to really be distracted by outside noise or pressures, those types of things. I think he's the type of guy that's gonna just put his head down and work and lock in on the game."
Getting Joshua Dobbs acclimated
The Vikings used Tuesday's trade deadline to add to its quarterbacks room.
Minnesota acquired Joshua Dobbs and a conditional seventh-round pick in a deal with the Cardinals, sending a sixth-round pick to Arizona.
O'Connell said Dobbs will prepare as if he is only one play away from becoming the starting quarterback. O'Connell did not commit to who would start after Week 9.
"Josh gives us an experienced player who's started some games, not only this year but last year, and has played some good football against some of the best defenses in our league," O'Connell said. "He's found ways to move the ball. He brings a level of athleticism to go with great football intelligence. He's a smart player, and I have always loved his makeup and what he's all about. He's played in a variety of offenses. I know he's excited to get going here."
Dobbs started the first eight games of 2023 for Arizona. In those games, he threw for 1,569 yards, eight touchdowns and five interceptions. He totaled an 81.2 passer rating for the Cardinals, and his 46.0 QBR ranks 19th in the league.
Trading guard Ezra Cleveland
The Vikings were also sellers at the trade deadline.
Minnesota traded left guard Ezra Cleveland to the Jacksonville Jaguars in exchange for a 2024 sixth-round pick.
O'Connell said it was difficult to trade Cleveland, considering how long the former 2020 second-round selection had been a staple of the Vikings locker room. Cleveland started 45 consecutive games and appeared in 53 games since being drafted.
"It is bittersweet, but I know it's a great situation that Ezra is going to down in Jacksonville. His former position coach (Phil Rauscher) is down there on a really good team, and Ezra will help out those guys tremendously," O'Connell said. "[It] really was a scenario that came about via our acquisition of Dalton Risner and seeing [him] perform these last two weeks out there with that group."
Risner took over at left guard after Cleveland suffered a foot injury three weeks ago versus the Bears. He has made two consecutive starts since and is now locked into the starting lineup.
EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings are making their first injury-related quarterback change since 2017 on Sunday.Fifth-round rookie Jaren Hall will start in place of Kirk Cousins following the 12-year veteran's Achilles injury last week in Green Bay. Hall, 25, made his NFL debut in relief of Cousins and will make his first regular-season start, leading a 4-4 Vikings team riding a three-game winning streak.The Falcons (4-4) are making their own quarterback change, though not due to injury. On Wednesday, Atlanta He...
EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings are making their first injury-related quarterback change since 2017 on Sunday.
Fifth-round rookie Jaren Hall will start in place of Kirk Cousins following the 12-year veteran's Achilles injury last week in Green Bay. Hall, 25, made his NFL debut in relief of Cousins and will make his first regular-season start, leading a 4-4 Vikings team riding a three-game winning streak.
The Falcons (4-4) are making their own quarterback change, though not due to injury. On Wednesday, Atlanta Head Coach Arthur Smith named Taylor Heinicke the team's starting quarterback for Sunday.
Vikings at Falcons is one of five games pitting two teams with a .500 record or better against each other. Four teams (Lions, 49ers, Jaguars, and Broncos) have Week 9 byes.
Kickoff is set for noon (CT).
The Vikings will wear their traditional road uniforms with white jerseys and purple pants.
Both teams are playing a different quarterback than they've started all year.
Heinicke, a former Viking who played for Washington against Minnesota in Week 9 last year, entered the Falcons game last week after Ridder had to be evaluated for a concussion. Ridder was cleared to return, but Heinicke finished the game. Heinicke finished 12-for-21 with 175 yards and a touchdown. He led four scoring drives that totaled 20 points, and the Falcons generated 253 yards of offense with him in the game.
Ridder was 8-for-12 with 71 yards and lost a fumble for the fourth time in his last six quarters. He led eight drives, none of which gained more than 29 yards. The Falcons had 89 yards of offense in the half he played. He was sacked twice but said he could not pinpoint the play he was injured.
Ridder also leads the league in giveaways with 12. Sunday will mark Heinicke's 25th NFL career start.
Hall took over for Cousins early in the fourth quarter and quarterbacked the final 11 snaps. He completed three of four throws for 23 yards and successfully protected the Vikings 14-point lead in his two relief possessions.
Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell named Hall the team's Week 9 starter on Tuesday. He took his first-team reps at Wednesday's walk-through.
"It's about doing the little things right around Jaren. Allowing him to feel like he's in a position where he could just go out and do his job that he's been coached to do," O'Connell said. "So it's going to seem like we're getting him ready for his first start, but I really look at it as if we've been doing our jobs then he's been getting ready for this for a while [and] just not knowing when that time would come."
Sunday's game won't feature at least three Pro Bowlers due to injury. Cousins is out. Vikings receiver Justin Jefferson will miss his fourth consecutive game after being placed on Injured Reserve following Week 5. Falcons star defensive tackle Grady Jarrett is also out after tearing his ACL last week at Tennessee.
Jarrett is described as "**the heart, soul, and undisputed leader**" of the Falcons defense. The two-time Pro Bowler started all eight games this season, recording 1.5 sacks, eight quarterback hits, and 23 total tackles.
In response to their respective team injuries, the Falcons traded for defensive tackle Kentavius Street, and the Vikings acquired quarterback Joshua Dobbs in a trade with Arizona.
Street, a fifth-year veteran, signed with the Eagles this offseason. He appeared in eight games and recorded four tackles.
Wide receiver Drake London left Sunday's game with a groin injury after making a 21-yard catch in the third quarter and did not return. After the game, he told reporters he'd be "good to go," but the second-year receiver did not practice on Wednesday.
Dobbs practiced with the Vikings for the first time on Wednesday. O'Connell said Dobbs will prepare as if he is only one play away from becoming the starting quarterback. O'Connell did not commit to who would start after Week 9.
The quick turnaround is nothing new for Dobbs, who was at Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center less than 24 hours after being traded by the Arizona Cardinals. He is joining his seventh NFL team (including practice squads) since being drafted in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He's also been rostered by the Steelers, Jaguars, Browns, Lions and Titans.
Dobbs is the first quarterback to be traded twice within the same season since at least 1994, joining Baker Mayfield (twice). If he starts a game for the Vikings this season, he'll become just the second quarterback since 1950 to start for three different teams in 365 days.
Like Dobbs, Ridder has started every game this season before Week 9. The Falcons selected him in the third round (No. 74) last season. He took over as the starter in Week 15 last year, replacing Marcus Mariota.
If the playoffs started this week, the Falcons would host a home playoff game, and the Vikings would be the No. 7 seed. Atlanta leads the NFC South, while Minnesota is two games behind the Lions for second place in the NFC North.
Week 9 is the halfway point of the season, though the NFL expanded to an 18-week regular season two years ago. A lot can and likely will change over the next nine weeks, but both the Falcons and Vikings are legitimate playoff contenders.
3 Things 'Bout the Falcons
Robinson is one of the league's most talented ball carriers. He's a threat out of the backfield and as a receiver. The Falcons also prominently feature running back Tyler Allgeier. He rushed for more than 1,000 yards last season. This year, his 332 rushing yards ranks 27th. Robinson is ninth in rushing with 466 yards.
Tight end Kyle Pitts ranks ninth in tight end receiving yards. The 6-foot-6, 240-pound mismatch creator is the highest-drafted tight end in NFL history. The Falcons selected him No. 4 overall in the 2021 draft.
First-year Defensive Coordinator Ryan Nielsen has quickly reshaped a Falcons defense that ranked toward the bottom of the league in most categories last season.
In the secondary, the Falcons added former No. 3 pick Jeff Okudah at cornerback. He plays opposite standout fourth-year cornerback A.J. Terrell. Safeties Richie Grant and Jessie Bates III lead the team in defensive snaps.
Bates signed a lucrative $64 million deal with Atlanta during free agency.
Flores' defense flowing
The Vikings have held three consecutive opponents to fewer than 20 points. Teams are averaging 13.3 points per game over that stretch against the defense.
Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores has the Vikings playing fast and multiple. Minnesota averages about two takeaways per game over their last three contests, which ranks eighth.
Defensive end Danielle Hunter leads the NFL in sacks with 10 and tackles for loss with 12.
Jordan Addison keeps scoring
Rookie receiver Jordan Addison joined elite company on Sunday. He became the sixth player in the Super Bowl era to catch their seventh touchdown in eight NFL games.
Addison has emerged as a trusted weapon within the Vikings offense. He has scored in every game in which Jefferson hasn't played.
1 Talking Point
"I think that it's very easy to go down that path and start thinking about that, but lucky for me, coaches are constantly reminding me just to focus on this day, focus on walk-through, this practice, this install – whatever it is. It's a long career in the NFL. It's a marathon, it's a journey. So you can't look at one game or one opportunity like it's your last. So for me, I'm just focused on being as prepared as I can for these guys because they've grinded so much these last few weeks and come back from so much adversity, that I just want to do my best to focus on this game."
— Hall on his upcoming NFL debut
In addition to Heinicke, the Falcons roster also includes former Vikings receiver/return specialist Cordarrelle Patterson, cornerback Mike Hughes, tight end MyCole Pruitt and offensive linemen Storm Norton and Kyle Hinton.
Atlanta Assistant Head Coach/Defense Jerry Gray coached Minnesota defensive backs from 2014-19.
College and Pro Connections
The Vikings hold a 20-12 record all-time against the Falcons (1-1 in postseason games). Minnesota is 8-7 when visiting Atlanta and has gone 6-2 (in three different venues) there since 1991.
ReactionsLike31Fire2FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- The Atlanta Falcons have a new starting quarterback -- for this week at least. In comes Taylor Heinicke. Out goes ...
But for now, it'll be Heinicke lining up as the starter against the Minnesota Vikings. That offers some symmetry. Heinicke broke into the league as an undrafted free agent out of Old Dominion in 2015 by spending two years -- but not playing a snap -- in Minnesota.
Now he'll be starting for the Falcons, who are tied with the New Orleans Saints for the NFC South lead at 4-4, in a game that could end up critical to Atlanta's postseason hopes.
So why now? How did we get here? And how permanent might this change be? Let's explain it all.
Atlanta has been adamant this is a health issue, rather than Ridder's performance. The quarterback was evaluated for a concussion in Sunday's loss to the Tennessee Titans. He was cleared to start the second half, but coach Arthur Smith said Heinicke started in his place out of an abundance of caution.
Smith also floated that perhaps Ridder's health could have affected his performance.
"Obviously going to listen to the medical experts first, and then we've got to evaluate, you know, short term, what's the best thing for Des," Smith said. "What's the best thing for this team to go win one game against Minnesota."
Ridder has had issues with turnovers the past three weeks with four lost fumbles (three in the red zone) and three interceptions. Critical errors have overshadowed the progress Ridder appeared to make in other areas, including some of his reads and his speed getting the ball out. In three of his last four games, according to ESPN Stats & Information, Ridder was getting the ball out in an average of 2.54 seconds or better. In his first three games this season, his quickest average time before pass was 2.64 seconds.
On Wednesday, Smith said "a lot of variables" went into the decision to start Heinicke.
He's been the backup to Ridder, and a capable one at that. Heinicke came into the game in relief of Ridder on Sunday and completed 12 of 21 passes for 175 yards and a touchdown. That is exactly what to expect from Heinicke, who is a career 63.7% passer and has shown he can come in for this type of role.
After Sunday's loss, receiver Scott Miller said they were able to get into a rhythm and get first downs, while making clear he believes in both quarterbacks.
"Taylor came in, he was doing his thing," Miller told ESPN on Sunday. "He was balling, so we just kind of took his energy and took it from there."
Heinicke made clear after Sunday's game he still believes this is Ridder's team, but he's a veteran of this particular scenario. He started almost all of the 2021 season in place of the injured Ryan Fitzpatrick and then last year replaced Carson Wentz in Washington.
"This isn't foreign territory to me," Heinicke said. "I've lived this the last two years. They brought me here to back up Des and help in any way. And if he goes down for any reason, to go in there and do that."
So whether it's for one week or something more permanent, it's going to be Heinicke's show on Sunday. What happens from there might depend on how he does.
"Taylor stepped in and he did a really good job of just keeping the momentum up," running back Bijan Robinson said. "He's a veteran, so he's been in situations like that before, that he was comfortable in and he made it really easy for himself and this offense to adjust with him.
"We practiced with him for so long now. He did a really good job of keeping ourselves on track and putting the ball where it needs to be and getting it out quick. And he just brings that veteran element. He did a good job [Sunday]."
Robinson was quick to say the team is comfortable with both Heinicke and Ridder.
In one week, probably not much. Smith will adjust, but don't expect massive changes.
What stood out from how Heinicke played Sunday is that it appeared he was in a fast rhythm and getting the ball out fast and to a specific spot. Atlanta might lean in more on that.
"You want to play to a player's strengths," Smith said. "They both have their strengths in certain ways, but we were able to consistently stay on track a little bit better. A lot of the plays that we hit, they weren't just dropbacks or quick games.
"There were some good play-action shots, too. So it wasn't like this wholesale change."
If Heinicke ends up starting for more than one or two weeks, Smith and his staff can use the bye week to implement more of what might work best for Heinicke into the overall game plan.
But for Sunday, a lot will look similar to what Atlanta has done the first half of the season. The Falcons put up over 400 yards of offense for three straight games prior to the loss to the Titans with Ridder at quarterback.
Sunday will tell a lot. The Falcons are tied with the Saints for first place in the NFC South and have won the two division games they've played (at Tampa Bay and home against Carolina). Atlanta still has to play the Saints twice.
Minnesota is also playing without its starting quarterback, Kirk Cousins, and should be a beatable team after losing Cousins for the season. Atlanta is a five-point favorite.
With the muddle that is the NFC South, Atlanta should be in it for a while regardless of quarterback. If Heinicke plays well and wins a game (or two, if he were to start against the Arizona Cardinals), then the Falcons would probably have to consider rolling with the hot quarterback.
Ridder kept Atlanta in contention and was showing progress, so for now, everything feels week to week.
Many of the usual suspects land on our premature list of legitimate championship contenders for next yearOffseason? Surely you jest.The Anheuser-Busch products spilled during the Texas Rangers’ World Series celebration might still be festering in the ...
Offseason? Surely you jest.
The Anheuser-Busch products spilled during the Texas Rangers’ World Series celebration might still be festering in the Chase Field visitors clubhouse by the time the industry converges again on the Phoenix area for Major League Baseball’s general managers’ meetings, which begin Nov. 7.
Yep, next season begins now.
With that, USA TODAY Sports takes a stab at stacking up the way-too-early contenders for the 2024 World Series – or at least, those who might stack 100 wins only to see it all go down in a punishing sequence of October events.
How we see it:
FOLLOW THE MONEY: MLB player salaries and payrolls for every major league team
Atlanta Braves: They proved that health and playing well going into the postseason sometimes matters. Yet 104 wins can’t be erased by their playoff Kryptonite: Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. Ronald Acuña Jr. will still be just 26 years old when he begins defense of a near-certain NL MVP award.
Texas Rangers: Run it back? Don’t doubt 'em.
It will be interesting to see what Max Scherzer can offer them in a full season during which he turns 40. Evan Carter will be the center fielder for the entire season. Marcus Semien and Corey Seager are back for Year 3 of their administration. Will Jose Leclerc and Josh Sborz form a shutdown back end of the pen over 162 games as they did in 17 playoff matches?
The first championship in franchise history only piqued the curiosity for what’s possible in 2024.
Houston Astros: Like the Rangers, the Astros will have their 40-something mercenary, Justin Verlander, back for a full season. Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman will be entering their contract years, while Kyle Tucker aims to lock down his first big payday.
Yet the ALCS constants are facing more questions, particularly with Jose Abreu turning 37 and an unsettled rotation with Luis Garcia still returning from Tommy John surgery and Framber Valdez and Cristian Javier not as steady as they were a year ago. Still, doubt 'em at your risk.
Philadelphia Phillies: Perhaps they just wasted their best chance ever by losing to an inferior Diamondbacks team. How far will they go to retain No. 2 starter Aaron Nola? Can they avoid first-half offensive doldrums that make locking down a playoff spot an adventure?
The offensive firepower isn’t going anywhere. Yet it’s hard to imagine 2024 being the year they give the Braves a hearty challenge for the East title – leaving a rocky path to success through the wild card round once again.
Los Angeles Dodgers: They’re the morning-line favorites to sign Shohei Ohtani, yet even if they land the global superstar, he still can’t pitch in 2024.
Shortstop Gavin Lux will return from an ACL tear, a loss from which the club never really recovered. But Clayton Kershaw may retire or move on, and the performance of their young pitchers leaves just enough doubt to consider them volatile, at best. But any offense pairing Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman will always resemble a machine.
Toronto Blue Jays: The grim exit at Minnesota shows this club is still capable of getting in its own way.
Still, everyone knows time is running short on the Vlad Guerrero-Bo Bichette pairing and Toronto is one of the few clubs that can trot out an actual pitching rotation – a pretty good one, too.
Seattle Mariners: Should be ready to fly another We Enhanced Our Playoff Odds banner, but will that get them back in the actual postseason ball?
Baltimore Orioles: The young core is so for real, and Jackson Holliday will arrive in 2024.
Yet this is, in fact, the winter they oughta pony up and spend a few dollars beyond their standard $10-ish million play for an innings-eating veteran pitcher. It’s the AL East, and inertia is practically begging a big-money rival to surpass you.
New York Mets: They won’t be the chic pick anymore, and we’re waiting on a new manager and exactly just how much hedge fund bro Steve Cohen might want to trim costs after this record-busting year of spending.
But lost in the ugliness of 2023 was a strong season by Francisco Lindor, a pretty great debut for starter Kodai Senga and a great finish from lefty Jose Quintana. Pete Alonso is in his walk year. It’s an interesting and talented stew and maybe muted expectations yields a greater outcome.
ReactionsLike1The Texas Rangers capped off a miraculous postseason run (they didn't lose a game on the road!) to win the 2023 World Series. But it's the Atlanta Braves who will enter as the favorite to take the crown in 2024.The Braves are +650 to win the Fall Classic, followed by the ...
The Texas Rangers capped off a miraculous postseason run (they didn't lose a game on the road!) to win the 2023 World Series. But it's the Atlanta Braves who will enter as the favorite to take the crown in 2024.
The Braves are +650 to win the Fall Classic, followed by the Los Angeles Dodgers at 7-1, the Rangers and Houston Astros at 9-1 and the Philadelphia Phillies at 10-1. The Arizona Diamondbacks head into the offseason at 25-1 to win next year's World Series.
Of course, odds will change significantly as moves are made in the offseason, especially when Shohei Ohtani's destination is determined. We'll keep you up to date every step of the way.
Team Launches ‘Lift As We Fly’ Campaign to Empower and Spotlight Local Businesses Throughout SeasonATLANTA – The Atlanta Hawks today officially unveiled their 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition uniform and corresponding court, which is set to debut during the team’s home game on Saturday, Nov. 11 against the Miami Heat.The game, powered by Georgia Power, is set to tip off at 7:30 p.m. at the award-winning State Farm Arena.The Hawks’ newest uniform and corresponding hardwood...
ATLANTA – The Atlanta Hawks today officially unveiled their 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition uniform and corresponding court, which is set to debut during the team’s home game on Saturday, Nov. 11 against the Miami Heat.
The game, powered by Georgia Power, is set to tip off at 7:30 p.m. at the award-winning State Farm Arena.
The Hawks’ newest uniform and corresponding hardwood court are comprised of key design elements inspired by the city of Atlanta known for its spirit and determination. The uniform is a tribute to the city’s history of lifting up individuals and providing the opportunity to soar while celebrating the power of collaboration and collective growth in achieving success that can be found interwoven through the interconnectedness of the city of Atlanta.
Made in collaboration between Nike, the NBA and the Hawks, the Nike NBA City Edition collection continues to represent the stories, history and heritage that make each franchise unique – honoring the inherent bond between court, community and culture. The Hawks will wear the jersey in eight marquee games, including their signature MLK Day Game presented by Chase on Monday, Jan. 15.
“We are excited to unveil these Fly city edition uniforms which share our passion for the city of Atlanta and the hustle, grind, hard work and collective growth we see from the people of this city on a daily basis,” said Hawks Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Melissa Proctor. “When one person shines, they ignite that fire in others, and we believe that together, we can lift each other up and inspire a legacy that transcends the game and reverberates throughout our city.”
The Hawks are also launching the ‘Lift as We Fly’ campaign as a way to shine a light on local businesses. At 4:04 p.m. every day beginning Saturday, Nov. 11, the team will empower and spotlight local businesses on their two massive, state-of-the-art displays located above Centennial Olympic Park and directly above the MARTA station.
Additionally, beginning with the team’s home game on Monday, Jan. 15, the Hawks and UPS will partner with the Russell Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (RICE) for the ‘Lift the 404 Honors Program delivered by UPS’ campaign to support and empower Black entrepreneurs across Atlanta.
The colorway for the city edition uniform is comprised of Heritage Blue, Buttery Brown and Infinity Black. Heritage Blue pays homage to Hawks iconic 1968 uniform, which marked the team’s arrival in this great city. Buttery Brown is a rich and comforting hue which embodies the team’s smooth style on the court and echoes the richness and diversity in Atlanta. Infinity Black is an affirmation of the team’s bold and relentless pursuit of a championship, fueled by the unwavering support of Hawks’ fans and the love for the city.
This jersey’s lowercase “atl” conveys ascension, familiarity, and the organization’s signature Southern hospitality. The Heritage Blue and Buttery Brown trim signifies the interconnectivity of Atlanta and the vertical side panels signify the upward trajectory of the team and city. On the front and back are the numbers which represent the down-to-earth Atlanta demeanor, and the tag shows the deep-rooted commitment to a community that comes together and lifts up one another.
The striping of Heritage Blue and Buttery Brown extends to the bottom of the shorts and the belt buckle pays homage to the legacy of the Hawks past and present on the midpoint of the uniform. The Hawks logo on the side represents the understanding of the organization’s legacy every step of the way.
The Hawks’ hardwood court proudly represents the deep roots and strong foundation that hold the community together. The court is designed with shadows of Hawks protecting their home court. This uniquely designed center court displays the iconic Hawks logo along with the grounding Infinity Black paint under the baskets contrasting the Heritage Blue skies wrapping the floor.
The Hawks have eight games in which the team will wear their 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition uniform and play on the corresponding hardwood court. In each of these games, the Hawks will celebrate Atlanta, a city known for its spirit and determination.
Nights in which the Hawks will wear the 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition Uniform include:
• Saturday, Nov. 11, in a game powered by Georgia Power (vs. Miami Heat)
• Saturday, Dec. 23, in a game presented by Georgia Natural Gas (vs. Memphis Grizzlies)
• Monday, Jan. 15, 2024, as part of MLK Day Game presented by Chase (vs. San Antonio Spurs)
• Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2024, in a game presented by Global Payments (vs. Los Angeles Lakers)
• Monday, Feb. 12, 2024 (vs. Chicago Bulls)
• Wednesday, March 6, 2024, in a game presented by SportsRadio 92-9 The Game (vs. Cleveland Cavaliers)
• Friday, March 25, 2024, in a game presented by Your Atlanta Area BMW Centers (vs. Boston Celtics)
• Saturday, March 30, 2024 (vs. Milwaukee Bucks)
Retail items from Nike, New Era, Pro Standard, Starter and 47 Brand as well as basketballs from Wilson will also incorporate the theme and colors from the jerseys.
As part of today’s unveiling, the Hawks also announced a special retail capsule collection called the FLY Collection, in collaboration with female-owned Atlanta-based business, Milano di Rouge, which will be sold exclusively at State Farm Arena. Those interested in purchase the Hawks 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition jerseys can visit HawksShop.com.
Earlier this week, the Hawks announced they are giving local entrepreneurs the chance to ‘pull up & pitch’ their business ideas from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday, November 11th at State Farm Arena.
The ‘Pull Up & Pitch’ program is presented by The Black Girl Ventures Foundation (BGV) and the NBA Foundation and is open to all US-based registered Black & Brown Founders, small business owners and entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs, founders and small business owners that are interested in participating in Pull Up & Pitch competition can RSVP at this link. Join the movement with the Atlanta Hawks 2023-24 Nike NBA Fly City Edition uniform at Hawks.com/Fly.
Although the Atlanta Braves came up short in the postseason, they had arguably the most complete roster, leading all other teams in team fWAR with 56.3. The next closest team in terms of total fWAR were the Rays with 53.5.That being said, it could be argued that they will be in trouble when it comes to their rotation in 2024 if the front office does not make something happen. The Braves were ninth in MLB in fWAR for SP with 11.7, but strikeout king Spencer Strider...
Although the Atlanta Braves came up short in the postseason, they had arguably the most complete roster, leading all other teams in team fWAR with 56.3. The next closest team in terms of total fWAR were the Rays with 53.5.
That being said, it could be argued that they will be in trouble when it comes to their rotation in 2024 if the front office does not make something happen. The Braves were ninth in MLB in fWAR for SP with 11.7, but strikeout king Spencer Strider is responsible for 5.5 of that 11.7.
The lack of rotation depth in the regular season was somewhat masked by the fact that the Braves scored 5.84 runs per game, which was a full .25 runs per game more than second place in MLB (Dodgers).
The Braves were able to continue to dominate in the regular season despite never truly having a full rotation. In fact, the Braves ended up starting fifteen different pitchers throughout the year with only three players starting at least fifteen games.
One of these three players was Charlie Morton, who has not confirmed yet if he will retire or not. He does have a club option in his contract though, if he does plan to hold off retirement for at least one more year.
Kyle Wright is out for all of 2024 after undergoing surgery. Max Fried, if healthy, would obviously start more than the fourteen games he did in 2023, and Spencer Strider will hopefully continue to be dominant.
As can be seen, there are some question marks when it comes to the rotation. Will Bryce Elder be a main factor? He started thirty-one games, and started in the postseason. However, down the stretch he struggled to a 5.49 ERA, 5.24 FIP, and 1.46 WHIP 78.2 innings in his final fifteen starts.
Will the Braves utilize Jared Shuster, and Dylan Dodd? Both of these pitchers showed flashes of promise, but ultimately struggled in their limited exposure at the highest level. Will AJ Smith-Shawver be part of the plans? The Braves could have potentially traded him at the deadline but ultimately held onto him pointing to potentially utilizing him in 2024.
With many of the questions we will have to wait and see, even into the regular season next year. However, some of these questions can be answered by adding to the rotation via free agency.
There are many SPs available in free agency this offseason, with big names like Shohei Ohtani, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Julio Urias, Aaron Nola, Blake Snell, Sonny Gray and others. The Braves may want to look at some cheaper options though, with already being near the luxury tax threshold.
One pitcher that really sticks out as a possibility that makes sense is Kenta Maeda. He could potentially be a low risk-high reward signing. He did not pitch in 2022 due to an injury and pitched 104.1 innings in 2023, potentially lowering his cost in years and AAV.
For his career, he has been solid, and has shown signs of being very good. For his career (seven seasons and 866.1 IP) he has an ERA of 3.92, FIP of 3.74, WHIP of 1.140, and a 9.9 strikeouts per nine innings. During the shortened COVID season he ended up coming in second in the Cy Young voting with an exceptional 8.00 SO/W ratio, while leading the league with a 0.750 WHIP and carrying a 2.70 ERA. Of course, small sample sizes can have outlying results, and he likely would not have carried those numbers over an entire season. However, he has shown that he can be an above average to great pitcher.
If we look at his peripherals for his most recent season, they are mostly positive.
His xERA was in the best 33.0 percent of MLB, his xBA was best 34.0 percent, chase rate was best 24.0 percent, swing and miss percentage was best 34.0 percent, strikeout rate was best 23.0 percent, and walk rate was best 22.0 percent.
This resulted in an xwOBA against him of a .300. For reference, the league average xwOBA against was .320.
We see his ERA in 2023 was 4.23, which is nothing to be excited about. However, when we see that his xERA was much lower at 3.77, it seems more appealing. We can also look at his BABIP of .293, and strand rate of 74.1 percent, and see that there are no red flags (at least in these terms) that point to him getting lucky in 2023.
Maeda has never truly been an fWAR king, with his highest being 2.9 in a season. However, he is a solid presence when healthy and can help almost any team.
Interestingly, he has not been brought up as a popular name in forums or in social media as a potential target. Of course, the front office makes decisions that are not effected by media, but it appears that Maeda could be had at a low price due to there being quite a few pitchers ahead of him in the free agent market in terms of hype and talent.
That being said, Maeda could be a cheap option to help fill out the back half of the Braves’ rotation. With so many question marks surrounding the rotation, adding a player like Maeda, who will not command the type of money a player like Sonny Gray would, makes a ton of sense.
Ultimately, it will come down to the contract and if it makes sense for the Atlanta Braves. One rotation arm is not the only move the Atlanta Braves will be making, so all the puzzle pieces will have to fit.
“In all honesty, the Local never fully reopened after Covid. And the renovations and everything that we’ve done in the last month and a half, it’s two years late,” says managing partner Steven Dixey of the beloved dive bar on Ponce.The Local, known for its chicken wings and karaoke nights, has been in limbo since the beginning of the pandemic, starting with the mandatory shutdown of indoor dining in March 2020, followed by two failed attempts by developers to purchase the property after its reopening.Dix...
“In all honesty, the Local never fully reopened after Covid. And the renovations and everything that we’ve done in the last month and a half, it’s two years late,” says managing partner Steven Dixey of the beloved dive bar on Ponce.
The Local, known for its chicken wings and karaoke nights, has been in limbo since the beginning of the pandemic, starting with the mandatory shutdown of indoor dining in March 2020, followed by two failed attempts by developers to purchase the property after its reopening.
Dixey and co-owner Charles Kerns have been working on plans to renovate the two-decade-old bar since early 2021, put in motion before the partners entered into the first deal to sell the property later that same year. When the deal fell through within six months, Dixey and Kerns resumed with the original renovation plans for the Local, only to enter into yet another sales agreement with Atlanta developer Portman Holdings.
With renovations on hold again, Dixey and Kerns negotiated a short-term lease with Portman to keep the Local open. For the last two years, Dixey says, they’ve been operating the bar under the assumption the property would eventually sell, which is why it came as a shock to the partners and the Local’s 20 employees when the deal with Portman suddenly fell apart over the summer.
Dixey took a chunk of the money he and Kerns had set aside to pay severance to the staff after the sale went through and instead offered employees three weeks paid vacation as renovations at the Local finally got underway in September.
While regulars will find the bar mostly unchanged inside, the building itself needed a lot of work, something long overdue after two decades in operation. Most of these improvements are not visible, but will ultimately make a big difference for the bar going forward into the next decade. The Local also received a massive deep clean, along with a needed purge of all bar items. Even the people attending the Local’s popular Monday karaoke nights are enjoying an upgrade to the weekly event in a fresh sound system.
But the most significant upgrade is to the Local’s chicken wing service. The bar simply couldn’t keep up with demand for its wings anymore, selling out within an hour after opening. People had already missed out on the opportunity to order wings if they showed up after 5 p.m. It prompted the Local to begin posting on Instagram about the bar’s daily wing inventory to keep track.
“It wasn’t like a ‘buy more wings’ situation. There’s a big process that goes into making them,” says Dixey of the reason behind why the Local struggled to meet the demand for wings prior to its makeover.
With the renovations came a reorganized kitchen and new equipment and a shift from table- to counter-service, allowing the Local to increase wing output by 40 percent. Wings are now available Wednesday through Sunday, with Mondays reserved for pop-ups during karaoke. Moving forward, the Local will be closed on Tuesdays — a first for the bar — for routine maintenance and cleaning.
But all of this almost wasn’t. After the Portman deal fell through in August, Dixey and Kerns had some hard conversations about whether to move on from the Local or move forward with renovations. “Do we just walk away from all of this right now? I would be lying if I said I didn’t think about that very hard. Everyone seems to love us for some reason,” says Dixey.
More renovations are in the works, too, including enclosing the patio and upgrading the outdoor seating areas before next spring and summer.
“We’ve been sucked into this monster of the Beltline. We’re a Beltline bar now. But it’s still going to be the same staff,” Dixey says. “We’re still going to stay 21 and up. No kids. No bullshit. We are not afraid. It’s still going to be the Local. We’re just stuck in the middle of the Beltline now.”
And before you even ask, the Local still doesn’t do to-go orders.
Open 5 p.m., Wednesday - Sunday; 8 p.m. on Monday. Closed Tuesday.
758 Ponce De Leon Avenue, Atlanta.