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Braves acquire lefty reliever Jerry Blevins from Oakland

The veteran reliever will join the Braves’ struggling bullpen

MLB: New York Mets at Washington Nationals Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The Braves have acquired veteran lefty reliever Jerry Blevins from the Oakland Athletics for cash considerations. Blevins’s contract has been selected from Gwinnett, and Blevins will be active for the Braves in Sunday’s matchup against the Rockies. Wes Parsons was sent down as a corresponding move.

Blevins, 35, is very familiar with the NL East as he spent the 2014 season with the Nationals and 2015-2018 with the Mets. He had success with the Mets in 2016 and 2017, posting sub-3.00 ERA’s and a 1.5 fWAR combined those two seasons. However, Blevins struggled in 2018, posting numbers below replacement-level with a 4.85 ERA and 4.97 FIP over 42.2 innings.

Blevins has not yet pitched in the majors during the 2019 season. He has been pitching for Oakland’s AAA affiliate, where he has allowed 2 earned runs (both off solo homeruns), 9 hits, 4 walks, and 16 strikeouts over 10.2 innings.

The Braves are hoping that Blevins can booster their struggling bullpen that gave up 5 runs in the ninth inning of Saturday night’s game to lose 9-5 to the Rockies. Walks have been the Braves bullpen’s Achilles heel so far, as they lead the majors in walk percentage. Importantly, Blevins’ career walk percentage is 9.2 percent, which is significantly lower than the Braves bullpen’s current rate of 14.6 percent. However, during Blevins’ last two major league seasons with the Mets, his walk rate was just north of 11 percent.

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