Braves Trade Closer Kimbrel to Padres

Apparently the San Diego Padres aren’t done dealing, and the Braves aren’t done working towards a rebuild.

The two sides agreed to a deal that sees All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel going from Atlanta to the Padres, bolstering an already strong Padres bullpen and adding to the rebuilding project that is the Braves.

Melvin Upton Jr. is also on the move to San Diego. In return, the Braves acquired outfielders Carlos Quentin and Cameron Maybin, as well as the Padres No. 4 ranked prospect Matt Wisler and a future draft pick. Jordan Paroubeck, the No. 15 prospect in the organization, is also headed to the Braves.

In addition to Wisler, the biggest reward is getting rid of Upton’s contract. The Braves save money while building towards their future. The move falls in line with other offseason trades, such as the trades of Justin Upton, Jason Heyward and Evan Gattis.

The trade is a bit of a surprise, but maybe only the timing of it. It was widely expected Kimbrel would be shopped in the offseason. But the Braves repeatedly said that Kimbrel and Freddie Freeman were there to stay. In the business of baseball, things change. The Braves shed over $79 million in salary with the deal.

For the Braves, Maybin will compete with Eric Young Jr. for the starting center field spot. Carlos Quentin serves as an option in left field with Jonny Gomes, or a back up to Nick Markakis in right field. Wisler will join a growing stock of pitchers in the farm system with Mike Foltynewicz, Tyrell Jenkins, Max Fried and Lucas Sims.

Melvin Upton Jr. becomes a fourth outfielder behind brother Justin Upton, Wil Myers and Matt Kemp.

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