There were several moves that the fans of the Atlanta Braves wanted to see this season concerning a few players. Most didn’t like the way a few things were handled in that B.J. Upton and Dan Uggla are still in the line-up while struggling. Some of the same fans didn’t understand why the Braves would go sign a guy like Elliot Johnson. This is the kind of move that shows what the Braves’ organizational strategy usually is and the move is proving to be a perfect one.
When he first arrived the Braves needed him at second base because they were basically out of two-baggers except for Paul Janish. Johnson showed up and didn’t hit a ton but handled the bat and was more than decent at second base. Early on it began to look like a good move. Then you could see the way he kept people laughing and loose in the dugout. Suddenly he began showing how well he could handle the bat with a few timely hits and it started to look like an even better move to bring him over to the N.L.
Then just a few days ago Justin Upton was hit on the hand with a pitch and though it thankfully was only a bruise, he had to sit out. With a short-handed outfield who do the Braves put out there? Well the new Johnson goes out there of course. The utility infielder made two great diving catches and showed that he is every bit as capable of playing every division on the field as Martin Prado ever was.
What a sneakily great move by GM Frank Wren. He doesn’t always get the credit he deserves but take a look at this past week. The Braves were without Jason Heyward all week and Upton for a couple of games. Uggla is still coming up to speed so what did the depleted Braves do? They had only won six in a row going into Sunday’s game. For a fan base that so many times is vocally disgruntled by a few things, this Braves team who has a magic number of 13 going into Sunday is certainly doing a lot of things right.