The news of Martin Prado being traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks was certainly the biggest surprise of the package deal that brought Justin Upton to Atlanta. The final tally has the Atlanta Braves sending Prado, Randall Delgado, Nick Ahmed, Zeke Spruill and Brandon Drury to Arizona. In return the Braves will receive Justin Upton and Chris Johnson from the Dbacks.
On the surface it might seem that Prado was too much to give up, but that’s just on the surface.
If you look deeper you will see why. Prado is a potentially great player but his greatest value rests in his versatility to play almost any position. With this trade in the books, the Braves would only need Prado at third base. When you take his versatility away, his numbers aren’t outstanding enough to hold on to him instead of gaining the younger Upton.
Add to that point that Chris Johnson is a third basemen who had fifteen homers and eighty runs batted in last season. Prado came in with ten and seventy. Again, Prado is a wonderfully versatile player, but he is not great enough to hold when it would mean negating a deal like this. Johnson could start at third or the Braves could give the chance to Juan Francisco. With Johnson included, the loss of Prado, who is in the last year of his contract and already looking to free agency with his wallet out, is not a big loss at all.