Braves are still talking to clubs about Gattis
With the start of Spring Training a little less than a month away, the Braves are still talking to a few clubs that had shown interest in Evan Gattis during the early portion of this offseason.
As USA Today’s Bob Nightengale first reported, Gattis traveled to Houston on Wednesday for a physical with the Astros. But the Braves are currently talking to at least one other club about a potential deal that would involve Gattis.
If Gattis is traded, his most likely destination would be to the American League, where he could be utilized as both a designated hitter and catcher. The Astros, Rangers and Royals have been among the clubs that have shown interest this winter.
While the Royals now appear to be out of the mix, the Astros and Rangers might still have some interest in the right-handed power hitter, who has already tallied a pair of 20-homer seasons, despite not playing more than 108 games during either of his first two seasons at the Major League level.
There was a point when the Braves were hoping to land a Major League-ready starting pitcher or outfielder in exchange for Gattis. But it appears their most recent discussions have provided reason to believe they would be more likely to gain a crop of prospects if they deal the 28-year-old slugger, who will not be eligible for free agency until after the 2018 season.
Gattis is currently slated transition from the catcher’s position to starting left fielder in Atlanta. While this would create the potential to compile approximately 150 additional plate appearances over the course of the season, it also creates some concern about his lack of experience as an outfielder.