The trade now makes right-hander Cory Gearrin and left-hander Yohan Flande the most likely candidates for the last two bullpen spots.
Asencio had posted a 3.27 ERA in 10 appearances this spring and posted 53 saves for Triple-A Gwinnett in 2009 and 2011. He lost all of 2010 due to his alias of Luis Valdez being exposed as false and his true age as three years older than he said he was. He was then stuck in the Domincan Republic because he could not get a work visa.
The 28-year-old reliever was traded because he was out of minor league options and would need to clear waivers before being sent to the minor leagues. Instead of risking losing him for nothing, the Braves went ahead and traded him.
"He’s always been a one-inning pitcher,” Frank Wren said, “and the [bullpen] role we envision needing to make a decision on is a multi-inning guy who can give you two or three innings at a time. That’s not something he’s ever done, so we were coming to the end with him being out of options and we looked to make a deal.”
Braves 101 will provide a more complete analysis of how this tinkers with the bullpen when everything plays out.
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