Northcraft the final player in the big trade

Aaron Northcraft is the final piece of the Friday trade between Atlanta and San Diego.

There were two more elements of the big trade with the Padres when the Braves made the announcement late Friday afternoon.

The other player headed to the Padres is right-hander Aaron Northcraft, a 24-year-old who was drafted by the Braves in the 10th round of the 2009 draft.

Northcraft split last season between AA Mississippi and AAA Gwinnett. He actually had his best success in a number of years when he started the campaign in the Southern League. Northcraft was 7-3 with a 2.88 ERA in 13 games (12 starts) with 57 his allowed in 65.2 innings, 24 walks and 62 strikeouts.

Then when he was promoted to Triple-A Northcraft struggled. He was 0-7 and had an ERA of 6.54 in 13 games (12 starts). Northcraft allowed 86 hits in 64.2 innings, with 31 walks and 51 strikeouts.

Northcraft was considered a marginal prospect by the Braves, which made him expendable as a throw-in for the trade. In his six minor league seasons with the Braves, Northcraft had a 3.91 ERA in 639.1 innings.

The Braves also received the Padres fourth international bonus spot in the trade. Baseball America reported Friday night that amount will be $182,300. When the Braves acquired Arodys Vizcaino from the Cubs last month, they received $832,000 and, according to Braves executive John Hart, signed eight players with that money.

Of course, by trading Justin Upton to the Padres, the Braves also gain significant payroll flexibility. Upton will make $14.5 million next season. The Braves can now spend that money on perhaps a starting pitcher, as they need another starter.



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