Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Braves will hire Alex Tamin as director of major league operations. Tamin filled a similar role with the Dodgers last season and has worked extensively with Braves GM Alex Anthopoulos.
After spending a number of years working on arbitration cases as outside counsel for various MLB teams, Tamin signed on with the Dodgers in 2011 as director of baseball contracts, research and operations. During his six-year tenure with the team, he also assisted in player analysis and focused on blending the best of both scouting and sabermetrics. Per Rosenthal’s report, he not only oversaw the club’s transactions but was “heavily involved” in their advanced scouting process, and is expected to do much of the same for the Braves.
Tamin is the latest addition to Anthopoulos’ revamped front office, following the addition of vice president of amateur and international scouting Andrew Tinnish and the subsequent promotion of assistant general manager Perry Minasian. The Braves have yet to confirm the hiring.
ESPN’s Keith Law has released his annual top-100 prospects list. According to Law, Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna is the number one prospect in baseball.
After blazing through High-A and Double-A ball last season, Acuna was the youngest player in Triple-A in 2017. He was 19 years-old all season long and put up a fantastic line of .335/.384/.534 in 486 plate appearances at Double and Triple-A. He then went on to star in the Arizona Fall League, leading that circuit in homers. Law, who is not one to throw hyperbolic comps around, says, “if Acuna stays in center and maxes out his power, he’s going to be among the best players in baseball, with a Mike Trout-ish profile.”
Acuna, who is 20 now, is likely play the bulk of the season in Atlanta, even if he’s kept down at Triple-A for the first couple of weeks of the season to manipulate his service time, er, I mean to allow him to develop his skills more fully. Or something. Given the presence of reigning Gold Glove center fielder Ender Inciarte, Acuna is not likely to man center for the Braves this year, but Law says he’d be a plus right field defender, which could make the Braves outfield Death to Flying Things in 2018. At least when Nick Markakis is not playing.
Number two on the list: Blue Jays third base prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. As law notes, the name may be familiar but he’s not very much like his old man. Mostly because young Vlad can take a walk. Which is better, even if it’s nowhere near as fun as swinging at balls that bounce in the dirt first.
For the other 98, you’ll have to click through.