Atlanta Braves News: In a surprising move just before the non-tender deadline, the Braves bolstered their bullpen with a late-night trade. The team acquired left-handed reliever Aaron Bummer from the White Sox, sending right-handed pitcher Michael Soroka, infielder Nicky Lopez, left-handed pitcher Jared Shuster, shortstop Braden Shewmake, and right-handed pitcher Riley Gowens in exchange.
Who is Aaron Bummer?
The Braves are willing to overlook Bummer’s 6.79 ERA in 2023. Bummer, relied on a sinker that averaged over 94 mph in 2023. His 60.1% groundball rate placed him in the 97th percentile of the league. Prior to 2023, Bummer posted a 3.03 ERA over 213.2 career innings.
The departure of Soroka and Lopez prompts the Braves to seek affordable alternatives. Shuster and Shewmake, once promising prospects, fell in the organizational depth chart.
Gowens, a recent ninth-round selection, received a $47,500 signing bonus from the Braves.
Braves Move On From Michael Soroka
Soroka, a fan favorite, faced non-tender due to injury setbacks, including two Achilles tendon tears. Lopez, a talented defender, was evidently deemed too going to be too expensive for arbitration. Neither Shewmake and Shuster have a clear pathway to future playing time on a championship caliber Braves team.
Soroka had a very solid rehab year after not pitching for three seasons. Of course, I’m talking about the number of innings he racked up and the productions he put forth in Triple-A. He won the IL Pitcher of the Month in August to close out the season for the Stripers. Soroka appears to be on the track back to productivity at a major-league level. A move like this indicates to me that AA has his sites set on a few starting pitchers this offseason.
What Does Soroka/Bummer Trade Mean for Braves Offseason?
This trade signals a strategic move for the Braves, addressing bullpen needs while parting ways with non-tender candidates and reclaiming valuable spots on the 40-man roster.
Strap in and get ready for the hot stove.
Do you think the Braves made a mistake? Should they have kept Soroka?