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Braves sign John Danks to minor league deal

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John Danks made four starts in 2016 and got released by the White Sox. After floating around during the entire season, he’s latched on to another organization — the Atlanta Braves.

Cleveland Indians v Chicago White Sox Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Braves have picked up a pitcher with links to the White Sox, though it obviously isn’t Chris Sale, nor is it Jose Quintana. Instead it’s veteran pitcher John Danks. According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, the Braves have signed the 31-year-old pitcher on a minor-league deal.

Danks only made a handful of appearances for the White Sox in 2016 and didn’t exactly pitch well during those 22.1 innings. He compiled an ERA of 7.25 and a FIP of 6.10, which was bad even in comparison to where his ERA and FIP were sitting around from 2013-2015. As a result of the uninspiring performances, the White Sox gave him his unconditional release early in the 2016 season.

That dip in production was likely due to the fact that he’s been on a steady decline since having shoulder surgery in 2012, and things just came to a head at the beginning of 2016. With that in mind, it seems like this is very clearly a move for organizational depth.

When you consider that the Braves are going to have two pitchers over 40-years-old throwing in their rotation and also have Jaime Garcia still trying to reach tip-top condition again, it makes sense that they’d have a guy like Danks in Triple-A just in case things go sideways with the rotation. He’ll be a longshot to make the starting rotation, but he could also serve as a bullpen arm.

Either way, this appears to be a move that was made purely for depth reasons, and hopefully he’ll be able to fill that role during his time with the Braves organization.