On December 9, 2014, the Braves agreed to a one-year, $3 million deal with veteran second baseman Alberto Collaspo. Collaspo is coming off of an off year, as he struggled to a .223 average as the everyday second baseman for the Oakland Athletics. Everybody in the Braves organization knows they already have the second baseman of the future in top prospect Jose Peraza. This became evident with the trading away of promising 2B Tommy La Stella earlier in the offseason. However, Peraza is only 20, and his highest level of experience is a handful of games in AA. With Peraza not yet ready, and the Braves not wanting to start his service clock in what many deem will be a down year for the Braves, the 2B spot in Atlanta is up for grab. Collaspo will compete with Kelly Johnson, Jace Peterson, and Phil Gosselin for the starting job this season. While the switch hitting Collaspo’s deal is a big league contract, I think it’s far from a guarantee he wins the 2B spot. He and Kelly Johnson have around the same amount of experience, but Johnson is simply a Non-Roster Invite at this point. However, Jace Peterson is still considered the most Major League ready prospect the Braves acquired this offseason and I’m curious to see what Phil Gosselin could offer with a bigger role. It’s still likely that Collaspo is the front runner for the job out of Spring Training. I think if the Braves surprise some people this season and Peraza’s had success in the high minor leagues that he may be brought up late in the season. I’m not particularly excited about the Collaspo signing but he does have a ton of major league experience and the Braves are exploring all possible options this season. With our future all but secure at second base, the Braves had nothing to lose with this signing at $3 million. Personally, I would like to see what our internal options have to offer at second base, but a bounce back year from Collaspo could give the Braves good production for the price. He owns a .267 career batting average over 9 seasons.
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