When the Atlanta Braves parted with utilityman Martin Prado as part of a seven-player trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks during the offseason, acquiring outfielder Justin Upton and third baseman Chris Johnson in the process, many fans were disappointed to see one of the franchise’s all-time nicest guys and hardest-working players leave.
If the first month-plus of the season didn’t change some minds, Monday’s matchup with the D-Backs likely did.
Upton and Johnson were in the middle of most of the Braves’ offense, as each man blasted a two-run home run, with Upton going 4-for-5 with two RBIs and Johnson going 3-for-4 with three RBIs. Both finished just a triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
In the end, Atlanta won 10-1, ending a three-game losing streak and taking the first game of the final series of their current 10-game road trip.
“The thing that makes me feel real good is that you know that you got traded and the [Braves] now look better,” Prado told the media on Monday. “I’m happy because all of my ex-teammates can see that they gave up something, but actually got a better team. That’s what [Braves general manager Frank Wren] was looking for. He made a good move.”
He sure did — at Prado’s expense.
I, too, was and still am a fan of the do-it-all Prado, but there’s no question the Braves upgraded their ball club when they brought in Upton and Johnson back in January. Still, I was happy to see Prado record a pair of hits as well. I’ll take more of that over the next two games, as long as it’s all in a losing effort.
If Atlanta’s pair of former Snakes stay hot, it may not make a difference what he does anyway.