Another night, another blown outing for the Braves bullpen. The team now sits two games below .500 due to the number of leads they have blown.
They may not have brought in Craig Kimbrel (though they should), but the Braves have made a move to potentially bolster the Achilles heel of the team. They traded for veteran southpaw Jerry Blevins.
Braves fans are likely familiar with Blevins. He has vast NL East experience after spending a season with the Washington Nationals, followed by four with the New York Mets. The veteran has had some great years and was particularly dominant for the Mets in 2016 and 2017. However, last season he saw his ERA inflate, walk rate go up, and strikeout rate go down. He had to settle on a minor league deal where he kickstarted his career, with the Oakland Athletics.
Blevins performed well in seven appearances for the A’s AAA affiliate, but they will now move him to Atlanta for cash.
Blevins is a bit of a lottery ticket but has the potential to be one of the better relievers in this weak bullpen. And with Jesse Biddle on the DL and being a reverse splits guy, and A.J. Minter in the closer role, the Braves lacked a lefty specialist. Unfortunately, Blevins has reverse splits as well last season, but he has historically done well against lefty hitters.
At the very least, this could be a move to improve the bullpen for virtually nothing, so solid move for Atlanta.