The Atlanta Braves have signed veteran right-handed pitcher Edwin Jackson to a major league deal, the team announced today:
Braves sign free-agent RHP Edwin Jackson (@EJ36) to Major League contract for the remainder of the 2015 season. Jackson will wear number 34— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) August 14, 2015
A starter for most of his career, Jackson came out of the bullpen for the Cubs this season, pitching 31 innings in 23 appearances with a 3.19 ERA and 1.36 WHIP. He walked a dozen and struck out 23. Kevin McAlpin of the Braves Radio Network reports that Atlanta also plans to use Jackson in relief:
#Braves sign RHP Edwin Jackson to add depth to the bullpen— Kevin McAlpin (@KevinMcAlpin) August 14, 2015
Atlanta will be the 31-year-old's ninth team in his 13-year career. Jackson debuted as a 19-year-old with the Dodgers in 2003 after being selected by Los Angeles in the sixth round of the 2001 draft.
As far as his impact with the Braves, Jackson will provide depth to a bullpen that has been gutted by injuries and trades. Atlanta has lost Jason Grilli, Jim Johnson and Luis Avilan among others in its bullpen, with only David Aardsma, Jake Brigham and Arodys Vizcaino as right-handers currently in relief roles. Of those three, only Aardsma has more than 15 inniings pitched this season.
Jackson can also be a valuable veteran presence for a Braves pitching staff that has just three members over the age of 25. He will also provide length in the bullpen in the case that one of Atlanta's young starters gets roughed up and leaves the game early.
He won't be leading the Braves to a playoff push this season, but Jackson is a nice piece for them to have as they wrap up 2015.