David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution tweets that the Braves “could be close to making a deal for a right-handed bat.”
He doesn’t offer any further details, but guys like Josh Willingham, Ryan Ludwick, and even Hunter Pence could be potential fits. Carlos Beltran is a switch-hitter, so presumably the “right-handed” part rules him out.
Jeff Francoeur would obviously be the most amusing option, if only because of Calcaterra’s reaction to his return, but even if the Braves wanted him back it’s tough to imagine Dayton Moore living without him in Kansas City. Once you find a love like that, you don’t let it go.
Atlanta ranks dead last among NL teams with a measly .622 OPS versus left-handed pitchers this season and no other team in the league is below .650, so without knowing any details the pursuit of a right-handed bat certainly makes sense in theory.
UPDATE: Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com adds Jonny Gomes to the list of potential Braves targets.
Our old friend Joe Posnanski tackles a venerable topic over at MLB.com: guys you totally forgot played for a given team. Mostly superstars who had brief stops at non-signature stations at the end of their careers. Or guys, like Mike Piazza and Reggie Jackson, who were with a team for a blink of an eye in between more famous way stations.
We’ve all had this conversation before: remember Willie Mays with the Mets? Doc Gooden with the Astros? John Smoltz with the Cardinals? Heck, I had forgotten about Smoltz with the Cardinals and he was a star on my favorite team once upon a time.
Posnanski calls them “Irony Jerseys.” That’s pretty appropriate, as one can totally imagine someone buying, say, that Dale Murphy Rockies jersey in the name of obscurity. Whatever you call it, it’s a good read.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to get my Ted Simmons Braves jersey for a party at some place uptown that you’ve probably never heard of.
The Seattle Mariners and the St. Louis Cardinals have made a minor trade. Seattle has acquired lefty Marco Gonzales from the Cardinals in exchange for outfielder Tyler O’Neill.
Gonzales, the Cardinals’ first round pick out of Gonzaga back in 2013, is in his first season back from Tommy John surgery. It’s been a good season, in which he has posted a 2.78 ERA and 64/17 K/BB ratio over 74.1 innings across two minor league levels. He’s pitched one game for St. Louis this year and got shelled, but we’ll leave that go.
O’Neill is a third rounder from 2013. He has hit .269/.344/.505 in five minor league seasons. He’s holding his own in Triple-A this year, smacking 19 homers in 93 games.