We Braves fans are all too familiar with Dan Uggla. He is fondly referred to as “The Braves Killer” in Hotlanta, due to his modest .340 batting avg at The Ted. Well, yesterday Braves GM Frank Wren traded diamond wizard Omar Infante and rookie Mike Dunn to Florida for Uggla.
This move is slightly bittersweet for Braves Nation, because of our steadfast admiration of Mr. Infante. Omar’s versatility and hitting skills are priceless, but I think Uggla’s power is going to serve us well. He’s coming off an incredible season where he hit 33 home runs and won the Silver Slugger. Offensively he’s going to provide that right-handed power in the middle of the lineup that we’ve needed.
Defensively, here’s where I have a problem. According to more important baseball writers, the Braves are considering moving Prado to LF to make way for Uggla at 2B. I can see their logic… Prado actually did start off as a left fielder, and it’s where he plays winter ball, and Uggla’s never played anywhere but 2B. However, looking at their defensive skills, I think LF would suit Uggla better than 2B. He’s never been a good defending second baseman, he’s consistently sported lots of errors since his rookie year… 18 last year, 16 in ’09, and 13 in ’08. Plus, as my friend Asher pointed out, he rocked 3 errors in an All-Star game couple years back! But, if Prado does move to LF, at least we would finally have a consistently good left fielder.
If Chipper isn’t ready by Spring Training, which initial indications says that he will be, I say put Uggla at third and El Martin at second. In my opinion, Uggla needs to be far away from second base. But, then what about left field? Matt Diaz and Eric Hinske all day long.
Bottom line, aside from Uggla’s defensive woes and shaved arms, I’m excited about his arrival to Atlanta. Lookout Philly.