It was hard imagining the Braves staying in contention while their best player is sidelined for 8-10 weeks with a fractured hand. But like he always seems to do, Coppy worked his magic over the phone to bring Matt Adams and cash over from the Cardinals for Juan Yepez. Adams was not being utilized in St. Louis, but comes to Atlanta carrying the Braves’ playoff hopes on his shoulders.
The “Big City” was known for two things while with the Red Birds: his tremendous power and the ability to come through in the clutch. He has already shown Braves fans glimpses of both of those things. The 6’3″, 260-pound left-hander hit this monstrous shot into the Chop House in his second game with Atlanta.
— MLB (@MLB) May 23, 2017
Adams added another home-run in last night’s game, giving him two in just three games with the team. Then after a three hour rain delay, he showcased that clutch gene of his. With two-outs in the bottom of the ninth, he sent a blazing line-drive down the third base line to walk the Braves off.
The team was quick to welcome him to Atlanta.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) May 24, 2017
His career in Atlanta could not have gotten off to a better start, but regardless of how Adams is hitting, he will remain a critical piece for this Braves team. Even mired in a slump, Adams can provide protection in the order for Matt Kemp. Braves fans saw first hand how much protection can help a hitter when the Braves traded for Matt Kemp to give Freddie Freeman some help. Freeman has been on fire ever since, and the only thing that could stop him was an injury.
Last night’s game may have never even gotten to that point if it was not for Adams’s presence in the lineup. In the bottom of the 7th, Felipe Rivero chose to pitch to Matt Kemp with two-outs, a runner on second and a base open, instead of walking Kemp to get to Adams. The move did not pay off as Kemp lined one to center giving the Braves a temporary 4-3 lead. The same situation came upon Pittsburgh in the bottom of the 9th, except this time they opted to intentionally walk Kemp. The result was still the same, as Adams delivered down the third base line for the win. The Braves desperately needed a power bat in the middle of the order after Freeman went down, and Adams is proving to be the piece that can keep Atlanta’s playoff hopes alive.