breaking news

Delta flights returning to normal after nationwide ground stop due to IT problem

Braves sign OF Ezequiel Carrera


The Braves signed veteran outfielder Ezequiel Carrera to a minor-league contract and will bring him to major league camp to compete for the left-field job to start the season.

Carrera, 30, was released Sunday by the Blue Jays, after hitting a career-best .282 with a .356 on-base percentage and eight homers in 325 plate appearances for Toronto in 2017. 

The left-handed hitter could give the Braves a platoon option in left field until top prospect Ronald Acuna takes over the position, then move to the bench.

Or, Carrera could start the season in Triple-A with the Braves if they go with two others from the group of outfielders that includes out-of-options Lane Adams, who has struggled this spring, Preston Tucker and non-roster invitee Dustin Peterson, who has come on strong late in camp with a pair of long home runs.

The Braves are set in center field with Ender Inciarte and in right with Nick Markakis, who’s in the final year of a four-year, $44 million contract.

Carrerra, who has a .262 average, 19 home runs and .690 OPS in 1,305 plate appearances over parts of seven major league seasons, reported to spring training with Toronto with a $1.9 million arbitration salary. He was designated for assignment March 1, outrighted to Triple-A, and returned to camp as a non-roster invitee.

The Blue Jays decided this week to release him, and Braves general manager Alex Anthopoulos, Toronto’s general manager in 2015 in Carrera’s first season with the team, picked him up to give the Braves another option for left field until Acuna takes over the position.

Career played in 121 games in the outfield for Toronto and made 71 starts including 50 starts in left field, 13 in right field and eight in center.

Acuna, 20, has met or surpassed all the soaring expectations for him this spring, hitting his second home run Tuesday against the Blue Jays after starting the day with a Grapefruit League-leading .419 batting average and a .526 OBP that also led the league.

The consensus No. 1 prospect in baseball, Acuna has played well enough to win the opening-day left-field job, but for service-time reasons the Braves are expected to start him at Triple-A. If they wait until at least April 13 to call him up, they’ll be assured of another full season of contractual control before Acuna could become a free agent, effectively getting a potential seven seasons instead of six from him before free agency.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Atlanta Braves

Braves’ Dansby Swanson exits early against Mets
Braves’ Dansby Swanson exits early against Mets

Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson left Tuesday’s game in New York with left hand soreness, the Braves announced. Swanson lined out to center in his at-bat and was replaced defensively by Charlie Culberson in the bottom of the inning. The team declared his exit precautionary. It’s unclear how Swanson was injured, but he appeared bothered after...
Braves postseason roster reliant on opponent matchups
Braves postseason roster reliant on opponent matchups

The Braves have confidence in who will comprise their postseason roster, though there’s still opportunity for some to make the 25-man set. Part of that will be determined by whom the Braves play. Lefty Max Fried is among those competing for a spot. He won’t make another start this season, manager Brian Snitker confirmed, but the team wants...
Arodys Vizcaino re-positioning himself as Braves closer
Arodys Vizcaino re-positioning himself as Braves closer

Braves righty Arodys Vizcaino is healthy and rejuvenated. As such, he may be reclaiming his closer duties. Vizcaino missed 55 games on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation. He was in the midst of a career-year, boasting a 1.65 ERA with 15 saves. A.J. Minter stepped in as closer in his absence. When the Braves were three outs from clinching...
Ex-Falcon McDonald, who played without a face mask, dies
Ex-Falcon McDonald, who played without a face mask, dies

Tommy McDonald, the small, speedy and sure-handed receiver who teamed with quarterback Norm Van Brocklin to help the Philadelphia Eagles win the 1960 NFL championship, has died. He was 84. His death was announced Monday by the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Details were not disclosed. McDonald played one season for the Falcons. In 1967, he had 33 catches...
Brian Snitker’s journey reaches latest apex: the playoffs 
Brian Snitker’s journey reaches latest apex: the playoffs 

Brian Snitker devoted 42 years to the Braves. On Saturday afternoon, the latest pinnacle of his commitment was realized. The manager, who took over as interim in May 2016, hugged bench coach Walt Weiss after the final out of the Braves’ 5-3 win over the Phillies, which clinched the National League East title. Snitker was filled with emotion,...
More Stories