Braves Sign Juan Abreu

The Braves have signed Minor League free agent reliever Juan Abreu and added him to their 40 Man roster. In a reversal of the usual way of things, the Braves signed a player who had been with the Royals, as Abreu has spent his entire career with Kansas City's farm system. He split last season between High Class A Wilmington, where he was stellar, with a 3-2 record, 1.69 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 11.8 strikeouts per 9 innings in 21.1 innings, and Double A Northwestern Arkansas, where he was fairly bad, with a 2-2 record, 5.75 ERA, and 2.01 WHIP in 20.1 innings. Though he did maintain his strikeout rate in AA, getting 11.1 batters per 9 innings to walk back to the dugout in shame, his walks jumped dramatically, as he walked more than one runner an inning.

Though he hasn't had an overly impressive Minor League career, racking up a 4.90 ERA and 1.53 WHIP in 220.1 career innings, the Braves thought enough of him to not only sign him but to protect him from the upcoming Rule 5 draft by placing him on their 40 man roster. With his strikeout ability, 10.9 Ks per 9 for his career, and 12.3 and 11.4 per the last two years, he obviously has a talented arm and maybe with the kind of pitching instruction the Braves are widely known for he can flourish.

(Hat tip to Andy Braves Fan and Mr. Sanchez for bringing this news to my attention.)

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