After the news dropped that Yasiel Puig‘s contract was void due to testing positive for COVID, the Braves lineup once again looked fairly weak against, what will be, very strong right handed pitching in the AL and NL East. Over the last few days, some left-handed options became available as both Derek Dietrich and Scott Schebler were cut loose by the Reds and Matt Adams was cut loose by the Mets. The Braves seemingly made their choice of the 3 as they inked Matt Adams to a Minor League deal. Today’s piece, “Matt Adams Back with the Braves”, will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the signing and what has to happen in order for Matt Adams to make his way to the big league squad.
Matt Adams Back with the Braves: The Hitter
It’s fairly obvious that Yonder Alonso represents the biggest obstacle in front of Matt Adams. In all likelihood, those 2 guys cannot coexist on a roster for long. Yes, it’s possible that the Braves carry both for a few weeks into the season until the roster is trimmed to 28 as a “trial” basis but when those 2 weeks are up, someone’s getting cut.
For me, the decision should be easy. Adams had some back issues last year that stifled his numbers as he put up his worst year since 2015. However, he still maintained a respectable .757 OPS against RHP, which is how he’d primarily be used. For his career, his OPS against RHP is .816 and in his small sample with the Braves back in 2017, his OPS was above .900.
Yonder Alonso, the Competition
Yes, Yonder Alonso is a switch hitter, but I don’t think it’s the Braves plans to utilize him much against LHP as their lineup against LHP is absolutely stacked without him. As a LHH against RHP, Alonso carries a career .755 OPS. Relegated to mostly DH/1B duties, that’s not a very appealing skillset. What is more, Alonso has only carried an OPS over .800 in 1 full year in his 10 years in the big.
If the Braves have to choose between the 2 players, if Matt Adams is fully healthy, the choice seems easy. However, it wouldn’t surprise me to see both guys get a chance to prove worthy the first few weeks of the season until Anthopoulos is force to make a choice.
Thanks for reading “Matt Adams Back with the Braves”. If you missed our latest on Braves Roster Updates, check it out here.