The Atlanta Braves will soon announce that they have acquired switch-hitting first baseman Mark Teixeira and lefty reliever Ron Mahay from the Texas Rangers in exchange for catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, shortstop Elvis Andrus, and two pitchers.
The Rangers will probably receive lefty Matt Harrison and right-hander Neftali Feliz. But first the Rangers must be convinced Harrison's shoulder is sound. He had a MRI last week and the Rangers are checking on Harrison's health.
Teixeira was hitting .297 for the Rangers this season with 13 home runs and 49 runs batted in. He missed about a month this season with a quadriceps injury. From 2004 through 2006, Teixeira averaged 38 home runs and 122 runs batted in.
The Braves believe Teixeira can improve the offensive production at first base, where the combined numbers for Atlanta's players at that position have been the worst in the game this season. Braves' first basemen have hit .210his year with 12 home runs and 42uns batted in.
Saltalamacchia was hitting .284 this season with Atlanta and had 4 home runs and 12 RBI in 141 at bats. He's played 25 games behind the plate and 14 games at first base, as the Braves have tried to see if he could be the answer with Scott Thorman struggling all season.
But the Braves believe the acquisition of Teixeira will give the club the best lineup in the game. He'll join the middle of the lineup with Chipper Jones and Andruw Jones and be a threat from both sides of the plate. Plus, he's won a Gold Glove at first base the last two seasons in the American League, giving the Braves a solid defensive player there as well.
Andrus is hitting .244 in 99 games for the Myrtle Beach Pelicans this season with 3 home runs and 37 runs batted in. He's an outstanding shortstop who doesn't turn 19 years old until next month. Andrus was expendable due to the emergence of Yunel Escobar in Atlanta.
Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. He can be heard on 680 the Fan in Atlanta and 105.5 the Fan in Macon. Email Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Braves acquire Mark Teixeira from Texas
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