Braves bring back Kelly Johnson for a third stint in Atlanta

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Kelly Johnson is back in Atlanta, as Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports that the well-traveled veteran infielder/outfielder has signed a one-year, $2 million deal with the Braves.

It’ll actually be Johnson’s third stint with the Braves. He came up through Atlanta’s farm system and debuted in 2005, playing four seasons with the Braves. Then he returned last season, playing 62 games with the Braves before being traded to the Mets in July.

Johnson has defensive versatility without being particularly good at any one position and in hitting .265 with 14 homers and a .750 OPS last season he topped a .725 OPS for the first time since 2010.

At age 34 he has some value to a clearly rebuilding team in that he’s a veteran who can play wherever needed, but Johnson is a part-time caliber player at this stage of his career.

Blue Jays hire Don Mattingly as bench coach

Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
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TORONTO — Don Mattingly is joining the Toronto Blue Jays as bench coach to manager John Schneider, the team announced.

The former New York Yankees slugger, a six-time All-Star, joins the Blue Jays after seven seasons as manager of the Florida Marlins, where he won NL Manager of the Year honors in 2020.

Mattingly previously spent five seasons as manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, winning three division titles in that span. He also worked as hitting coach and bench coach for the Yankees, and as hitting coach of the Dodgers before his managerial stint in Los Angeles.

In Toronto, Mattingly replaces Casey Candaele, who was promoted from Triple-A Buffalo to serve as Schneider’s bench coach after the Jays fired manager Charlie Montoyo in July, replacing him with Schneider. The Blue Jays said Candaele will resume his job as manager of the Triple-A Bisons in 2023.

Mattingly spent his entire 14-year playing career with the Yankees, winning nine Gold Glove awards at first base, three Silver Slugger awards, the 1984 AL batting title and the 1985 AL MVP award.