The Atlanta Braves are expected to attempt to trade right-handed relievers Anthony Varvaro and Cristhian Martinez if they are unable to fit the pitchers onto their Opening Day roster, according to Mark Bowman of MLB.com.
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Offseason acquisition Jordan Walden has missed a significant stretch of time this spring due to a back injury. Still, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez continues to say the reliever could break camp on the team's active roster. Even with Walden potenitally rejoining the 'pen, Jonny Venters' recent elbow sprain could make this a moot point, according to Bowman.
Varvaro and Martinez are both out of options, meaning they would have to pass through waivers before they could be sent to the minors. Atlanta doesn't have room on its roster to carry both pitchers and a healthy Walden.
Rather than place the pitchers on waivers, the Braves would likely attempt to trade one of the relievers to recoup some value if Walden is deemed healthy. Bowman believes Martinez has a leg up on Varvaro, as he has the ability to log multiple innings. He also provides a more extensive track record in the majors.
Martinez maintained an ERA of 3.91 over 54 appearances last season. The 31-year-old owns a career ERA of 3.98 with a strikeout-to-walk ratio (SO/BB) of 3.13.
Varvaro appeared in 12 games for the Braves last season, posting a 5.40 ERA. In parts of three seasons in the majors, the 28-year-old owns a career mark of 4.43 with a 1.88 SO/BB.