Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Yunel Escobar Traded to Toronto for Alex Gonzalez

MLB Trade Rumors is reporting (now confirmed by Atlanta) that the Braves have sent Yunel and minor league LHP Jo-Jo Reyes to Toronto for SS Alex Gonzalez and minor leaguers LHP Tim Collins and SS Tyler Pastronicky.

It had been rumored recently that the Braves were listening to possible offers for Yunel in a season of significant offensive drop-off and critiques of his effort and attitude. The Braves are probably selling a bit low here, but it seems the team was likely tired of waiting for Yunel to reach his potential..both on and off the field.

Alex Gonzalez has been part of the home run boom in Toronto this season and is in the middle of what might be a career power year, having already hit 17 HRs (he now leads the Braves in that category) and driven in 50 RBIs. His OBP is seriously lacking, and has throughout his career (.294), but it's not exactly like Yunel was lighting it up in that department this year. Gonzalez comes with a $2.5m club option for next year, so there is still a bit of stability there if the Braves want/need it. If he shows similar power in the second half, then the trade could very likely pay-off for the Braves, who could really use a right-handed power bat. I don't consider Jo-Jo to be much of a loss as he's seemed to be the prototypical Quad A player, having been consistently hit pretty hard in his handful of major league appearances over the past few years.

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