Atlanta Braves, MLB Free Agency

Braves sign outfielder who could take playing time away from Marcell Ozuna

The Atlanta Braves have signed an outfielder who could potentially take playing time away from Marcell Ozuna.

The Atlanta Braves‘ roster was essentially set in stone throughout the offseason, minus the team acquiring catcher Sean Murphy from the Oakland Athletics and losing shortstop Dansby Swanson to the Chicago Cubs in free agency. When looking at their outfield, it’s virtually set with Ronald Acuña Jr. and Michael Harris II. When it comes to left field, it’s likely to be split between Eddie Rosario and Marcell Ozuna, the latter of whom had a rough 2022 season.

It appears the Braves have made a move for a player who could potentially take playing time away from Ozuna.

According to Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors, the Braves and outfielder Kevin Pillar agreed to terms to a minor league deal that could be worth up to $3 million if he were to make the major league roster.

Braves agree to Kevin Pillar to minor league deal

Pillar started off his MLB career with the Toronto Blue Jays, where he made a variety of web gem catches while playing in the outfield during his time there. Since the 2019 season, Pillar was on five different teams, including the San Francisco Giants (2019), Boston Red Sox (2020), Colorado Rockies (2020), New York Mets (2021), and Los Angeles dodgers (2022).

This past season, Pillar only played in four games with the team after suffering a shoulder injury that essentially ended his campaign with the team.

Ozuna put up incredible numbers in the 2020 season, his first with the Braves. But ever since signing a contract extension, he never got close to that level of production. Ozuna is under contract for two more seasons before he has a club option for the 2025 campaign.

In 124 games, Ozuna slashed .226/.274/.413 while recording 23 home runs, 56 RBI, 56 runs scored, and 106 hits.

Ozuna is currently slated in as Atlanta’s starting designated hitter, and backup left fielder behind Rosario. If Pillar were to make it to the major league roster, one would imagine that he would take some time in the outfield away from Ozuna.

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