So who else was in the Braves-Yankees deal?

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Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com looks at the two non-Melkys in the Vazquez deal. He says Arodys Vizcaino “looks like a high-end rotation prospect with a ton of upside.” Of course at 19 it’s way too early to know what he’ll turn into.  As for Michael Dunn: he sounds like Ebby Calvin “Nuke” LaLoosh. Well, maybe not that extreme, but definitely a good stuff, bad command kind of guy.

Meanwhile, everyone who wants to dump on the Braves end of the trade seems to forget that in addition to Melky and the pitchers, the Braves got $9-10 million bucks to play with as a result of not having to pay Vazquez. Jayson Stark suggests Dan Uggla or Xavier Nady.  Ken Rosenthal wonders whether Mark DeRosa, Marlon Byrd or Adam LaRoche could sign with Atlanta.

Not sure how I feel about any of those guys, but the point is this: the Braves may not have gotten the best deal from the Yankees and should have tried to do better, but unless they really screw up the spending of the Vazquez dividend, they are likely to be a stronger team on opening day than they were when we woke up this morning, and that’s the name of the game, isn’t it?

Kyle Schwarber: Before and After

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It’s always a bit deceiving to see offseason workout photos of players who are said to be getting into great shape because guys in those pics are wearing compression shirts and crap and we’re used to seeing them in baseball uniforms. I remember pics of Miguel Cabrera and David Ortiz in the offseason looking svelte, only to see them in uniform come spring as their familiar beefy selves. Uniforms are often loose and billowy and the players wear  a couple of layers when they’re suited up, so at least visually speaking it’s better to compare apples to apples.

Which brings us to Kyle Schwarber. All offseason long we’ve been getting reports about Schwarber working out, losing weight and, of course, getting into The Best Shape of His Life. And some of those pics have definitely shown a young man who has cut fat and gotten lean. Good for him!

Let’s see how that translates to Schwarber in uniform. Here is is at spring training last year:

MESA, AZ – FEBRUARY 21: Kyle Schwarber #12 of the Chicago Cubs poses during Chicago Cubs Photo Day on February 21, 2017 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

 

Here he is toward the end of last season:

CHICAGO, IL – SEPTEMBER 09: at Wrigley Field on September 9, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

And here he is now:

MESA, AZ – FEBRUARY 20: Kyle Schwarber #12 of the Chicago Cubs poses during Chicago Cubs Photo Day on February 20, 2018 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

 

Nice goin’, kid.