In an offseason of stockpiling arms, the Braves finally unloaded from their plethora of arms to acquire some bats from the Rockies. In late January, the Braves packaged up pitchers David Hale and Gus Schlosser for minor league catchers Jose Briceno and Chris O’Dowd. The most valuable piece the Braves lose in this trade is Hale, a local kid who made some spot starts in recent years for the Braves but mostly pitched in a long relief role for the team. Hale had a 3.02 ERA in 47 appearances for Atlanta, 8 of which were starts. Throughout the offseason, many thought Hale was the likely fifth starter for Atlanta, but the Braves got good value for Hale and felt comfortable going forward with candidates Wandy Rodriguez and Eric Stults competing for the fifth spot. Manny Banuelos is a candidate to take Hale’s long relief role. Hale’s ERA will likely skyrocket playing in Coors Field, as he is not exactly a strikeout pitcher. Schlosser got annihilated in 15 appearances for Atlanta, and he is a very expendable piece, to say the least. The prized piece the Braves get back in this deal is C Jose Briceno. Briceno, 22, is a great prospect, as well as an insurance policy for Christian Bethancourt. However, their games couldn’t be any different. Bethancourt is known for his defensive prowess while Briceno is known for his bat. Last season in 315 A-ball at bats, he hit .283 with 12 homers and 50 RBI. It’s truly hard in today’s day and age to find a catcher with pop in his bat and I think the Braves made a good move here. My guess is Briceno starts the year in Mississippi, and I have him ranked as the 12th prospect on my list. O’ Dowd is merely a throw in here, and was probably more or less brought in so the Braves could have some extra catchers in Spring Training. He is the son of former Rockies GM Dan O’Dowd, who was relieved of his duties earlier in the offseason. He being moved is similar to the Braves’ dealing of Kyle Wren earlier in the offseason.