The Atlanta Braves have traded for outfielder Joc Pederson from the Chicago Cubs, the team announced today. The Cubs received first baseman Bryce Ball in return.
Given that the Braves and Cubs have virtually the same record, it is interesting that one of them is selling and the other is buying in the same deal. The Braves, who lost Ronald Acuna, Jr., for the year, have been viewed as potential sellers, but in the mediocre N.L. East, they are still just four games out of first. Bringing in Pederson is an effort to try to shore up the hole from Acuna’s absence.
Pederson only has a 718 OPS on the year, so one can question how much he really helps, but then Ball is a 23 year old first baseman with a 750 OPS in A ball, so it’s not like they gave up much to speak of to get him. The main value for the Cubs would seem to be saving the roughly $2M due to Pederson the rest of this season and the $2.5M buyout on his mutual option for 2022.