Braves: Critical piece of Matt Olson trade likely to be released or traded

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In a shocker, the Oakland A’s have released their Opening Day roster, and Cristian Pache was not included. Because Pache no longer has options, he’s either going to be traded or headed to the waiver wire.

Once the top prospect in Atlanta’s organization and a top ten prospect in all of baseball, his slide continues, and it doesn’t look like there is an end in sight.

Cristian Pache was one of the primary pieces the Braves sent to Oakland just last year in return for Matt Olson. He was penciled in as their starting centerfielder, but while his defense came as advertised, he became unplayable because his offense just couldn’t catch up. He hit a paltry .166 with three homers over 260 plate appearances, and even though he started off the spring hot, it wasn’t enough for him to crack the A’s Opening Day roster.

I wouldn’t mind the Braves taking another shot on him. They could use the added outfield depth, and perhaps he could find something with the organization that made him such a highly touted prospect. However, it looks like he’s destined for a role as a defensive replacement at the major-league level. Pache’s offense hasn’t just been bad; he’s up there with the worst bats to ever play in the MLB. Plenty of pitchers have better slash lines than him, and at 24-years-old, it’s fair to wonder if he’ll ever figure it out.

It’s sad to see because Cristian Pache is by all accounts a tremendously hard worker with an outstanding attitude, but that will only take you so far in this game. If his offense is so abysmal that the A’s are even willing to part ways with him, that’s a terrible sign for his future. I’m rooting for him to figure it out, but the Braves are lucky they parted ways with him when they did. There’s a good chance he doesn’t crack a major-league roster ever again.

Photo: Randy Litzinger/Icon Sportswire

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