Some fans have already written off Cristian Pache after a poor start to 2021, but the 22-year-old has only taken 67 regular season at-bats in his career. There’s no reason to rush Pache, and that’s what the Braves chose to do. Their patience is paying off.
Don't look now, but Cristian Pache is scorching hot in Gwinnett:
He has seven doubles and four home runs over his past 27 games. His walk rate is up to 10% and he is playing fantastic defense.
— SportsTalkATL Jake (@cantguardjake) September 8, 2021
While at the time that September sample size was a lot smaller, Pache has still been playing well over the last couple of months. His OPS is up to .771 on the season, and he is finally showing some confidence after a brutal start to the season in Atlanta.
Maybe it was unfair to pin all of those expectations on a 22-year-old, and the injuries certainly didn’t help. Nobody saw Marcell Ozuna being arrested, or Ronald Acuña Jr.’s ACL injury. Thankfully, Alex Anthopolous remedied a lot of those issues at the trade deadline, and the Braves have much more breathing room to let Pache develop in Gwinnett. I’m not sure if he’ll be on the Opening Day Roster in 2022, but I would lean towards no. If he can keep playing like this in AAA to start next season, I’m just fine with that. The Braves should have plenty of outfield options at their disposal next season.