The Braves definitely have some issues in their outfield right now. Ronald Acuna Jr. is not one of those problems and is going to play every day, but with Marcell Ozuna’s injury and subsequent off the field issues and Cristian Pache still not starting his rehab assignment yet, the team is left giving regular at-bats to Ehire Adrianza, Ender Inciarte, and Guillermo Heredia out there. In short, that is isn’t exactly how they drew things up in spring training.
Heredia has been pretty good considering, but he is not used to every day at-bats and the Braves have been clear that they are not going to push that again. Ender is....Ender and his bat certainly leaves something to be desired and Adrianza is best suited as a utility bench option. So where does that leave the Braves? Well, it leaves them at exploring other options.
The #Braves today selected the contract of OF Abraham Almonte and optioned RHP Jay Flaa to Triple-A Gwinnett. To make room on the 40-man roster, Atlanta transferred RHP Huascar Ynoa to the 60-day IL.— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) May 31, 2021
Before we get to Almonte, its worth noting that Flaa was a waiver claim from the Orioles and made just one appearance with the Braves which...did not go well. He’ll head to Gwinnett to try and get back into the mix for a bullpen spot. Ynoa getting transferred to the 60-day IL isn’t that surprising given that he broke his hand as is going to be out a while anyways and will need to rehab to get stretched back out, etc.
In regards to Almonte, he has had a great start to the season down in Gwinnett with a 1,167 OPS in 62 at-bats and has been a key cog in that offense. His track record in 1151 plate appearances in the big leagues hasn’t been anywhere near that good, but at this point...this sort of move is all the Braves can do until Pache gets healthy and Drew Waters is ready to call up.