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Braves rewind: Whatever happened to...Jermaine Dye?

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Let's take a look back at Braves from years past.

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Hitting a home run in your major-league debut is always memorable, but especially so when it's also your first major-league at-bat.

That's what Jermaine Dye did for the Braves on May 17, 1996 against the Reds. The 22-year-old outfielder, taken in the 1993 draft, would play in 98 games that year with 12 homers and a .281 avg.

Dye would be traded that offseason to Kansas City where he would develop into one of the more prolific home run hitters in the game. In his first year as a full-time player in 1999, he mashed 27 home runs with 119 RBI. The following year, he earned his first of two All-Star selections en route to a 33 HR/118 RBI season while hitting .321.

He'd be traded shortly before the trade deadline in 2001 to his hometown A's, but he suffered a broken leg in the playoffs when he fouled a ball off just below his left knee.

As a free agent following the 2004 season, Dye would sign a two-year deal with the White Sox, and all he did was lead them to a World Series championship as well as win Series MVP honors by hitting .438 in a four-game sweep of the Astros. 2006 saw Dye set career highs in home runs (44) and RBI (120) and earn his second All-Star selection.

For all his homer-hitting prowess, his defense was another story. He was a liability in the outfield and was worth just 0.2 WAR as a 35-year-old in 2009 despite hitting 27 home runs. He was granted free agency at season's end.

Come Opening Day 2010, and Dye was still jobless. However, he only had himself to blame. He received offers from the Cubs, Brewers, and a $4 million deal with the Nationals, but turned them all down. A minor-league deal with the Dodgers presented itself, but he still declined. One former major-leaguer even dared to suggest that racism was to blame for Dye's unemployment.

Dye would ultimately announce his retirement in 2011, saying he was "at peace" with his decision, and that he would eventually like to get back into baseball. He currently lives in San Diego with his three kids, and participated in the Encompass Championship in Glenview, Illinois last July.

CAREER STATS