The Braves just announced a trade with the Rockies:
The Braves have acquired catchers Jose Briceno and Chris O’Dowd in exchange for right-handed pitchers David Hale and Gus Schlosser
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) January 30, 2015
Hale, 26, has pitched in 47 major league games, eight as a starter, almost all of that action coming last season. He started last season as the team’s fourth starter and had one great start in late April, but that was it. The righty has a 3.02 ERA and a 44/39 K/BB ratio in 87.1 innings.
Schlosser is also 26. All of his big league experience game last year too, and it wasn’t pretty: a 7.64 ERA in 15 relief appearances with eight strikeouts and six walks in 15 innings. He’s also a righty. One can’t imagine these guys will have much to smile about pitching in Denver. But really, they profile more as organizational depth.
Back to Atlanta from the Rockies goes Briceno and O’Dowd, both catchers. Briceno is only 22. He’s hit well — very well, actually — but hasn’t played above A-ball. O’Dowd is 24 and has hit less well — though he shows some on-base skills — and hasn’t played above Double-A. Oh, and he’s also former Rockies GM Dan O’Dowd’s son.
Without reading stuff from people who know the catchers — particularly their defensive chops — better, my gut reaction is that the Braves have unloaded a couple of pitchers they’ve seen enough of and don’t feature in their future plans for a couple of catchers who could maybe turn into something someday. Or at least one of them in Briceno. Which isn’t a bad deal from Atlanta’s perspective. Isn’t bad at all.