Tuesday, November 16, 2010

It Could Get Uggla Out There

The Florida Marlins have traded second baseman Dan Uggla to the Atlanta Braves for infielder Omar Infante and left handed reliever Mike Dunn.

In 2010, Uggla hit a career high .287 with 33 homeruns and 105 RBI. Uggla has hit 30 or more homeruns in each of the last four seasons. The Braves need a right-handed power hitter to protect Jason Heyward and Brian McCann in the lineup. So I guess we won't be seeing Martin Prado at second base in 2011. Nor Brooks Conrad.

Last week, Uggla had turned down a four-year contract extension from the Marlins worth $48 million. So the Marlins had little choice but to trade Uggla rather than lose him as a free agent. In return, they get Infante who made the 2010 NL All-Star team as a utility player. Infante's .321 batting average was third best in the NL this season. Meanwhile, Dunn is a hard throwing southpaw who has control problems walking 17 batters in 19 innings. However, he did keep his ERA under 2.00. The Marlins are shoring the left side of their bullpen as they also recently acquired Dustin Richardson from the Boston Red Sox. Overall, I think the trade will help both ballclubs.

Rumor has it that the Marlins are on the verge of signing free agent catcher John Buck who had a career year with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2010. The Marlins have been very aggressive this off-season and are looking to compete with the Phillies and Braves next season. With Uggla now in Atlanta look for fans in South Florida to be motivated to show up to boo Uggla when the Braves visit Miami. It could get Uggla out there.

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