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Braves claim Rene Rivera off waivers from Angels

For the second straight season, Rivera joins a contender as part of an August waiver transaction.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Braves have acquired catcher Rene Rivera off waivers from the Angels, as MLB.com’s Jon Morosi first reported Wednesday:

It doesn’t appear likely that Rivera will steal significant playing time from the Braves’ existing catchers, Tyler Flowers and Kurt Suzuki, and with players having up to 72 hours to report to a new team, it’s possible that he won’t even join the roster — thus preventing the Braves from having to get rid of any of their current 25 players — before rosters expand on Saturday.

Rivera, 35, had posted a .244/.287/.439 slash line with four homers in 87 plate appearances this season. He’s regarded as an above-average defender, and having him on the bench could allow the Braves to use whoever’s not starting on a given day, whether it’s Flowers or Suzuki, as a pinch-hitter.

This is the second straight year that Rivera has joined a contender as part of an August waiver transaction. After spending most of last season with the Mets, he was claimed by the Cubs — who were dealing with an injury to Willson Contreras — on August 19. He went on to post a ridiculous .341/.408/.591 slash line with two homers in 50 plate appearances down the stretch.

Rivera is a free agent after the season, making him an extremely low-risk acquisition. The Braves will be responsible for the remainder of his modest $2.8 million salary.