Outfield and second base are both major needs for the Braves right now. The losses of Ozzie Albies and Adam Duvall certainly sting, but there are some options to cover both. A recent report revealed the Marlins are willing to listen on every player not named Sandy Alcantara. An obvious candidate would be Jorge Soler, who Chase recently discussed in his Top 5 outfield trade targets piece for the Braves, but I actually like one of his teammates more — Jon Berti.
Last year’s Adam Duvall trade showed that both front offices are willing to trade with each other, so it’s not that much of a stretch. But there is one thing that might scare the Marlins leadership away: Berti is under team control through 2025.
Marlins firesale ‼️ pic.twitter.com/IlvqoX2K8R
— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) July 26, 2022
Jon Berti brings a ton of value to any team he’s on, but not in the traditional sense. The 32-year-old oozes versatility, logging time at every position but first base, catcher, and pitcher, and he does it all well. Berti isn’t a Gold Glover by any means, but he can play average defense at any position. Right now, the Braves need a guy like that.
At the plate, Jon Berti isn’t going to send many baseballs into the seats, but he gets on base in other ways. Berti has a respectable .365 OBP, buoyed by elite plate discipline. He ranks in the tenth percentile or better for chase rate and walk percentage.
Once Berti’s on base, watch out. The Marlin leads Major League Baseball in steals with 28 (and has only been caught three times). Blazing speed and intelligent baserunning are staples of his game. Who needs to hit doubles when you can turn a walk into a two-bagger?
Jon Berti steals 2nd, 3rd, and home against the Mets, a breakdown pic.twitter.com/IAHoMPcJRv
— Jomboy (@Jomboy_) August 27, 2020
Here’s the catch: it might take a sizable haul to get Berti due to the amount of team control he has. Additionally, Berti is dealing with a groin strain that is starting to heal, but those types of injuries can resurface. With that being said, the Marlins are looking to get anything in return for veterans like Berti. Even with the Braves’ weakened farm system, there should be enough to acquire the speedster.
The Marlins have pitching. They have plenty of pitching. It really depends on who the Braves value in their system, but I think talks would start with Braden Shewmake and Jesse Franklin. At that point, Alex Anthopoulos would likely have to throw in a lottery ticket pitcher too. Overall, I would love to have Jon Berti on the Braves. He’s what this team needs now and could be a valuable utility player for years to come.
Photo: Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire
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