Need for Speed

Right before the Trade Deadline, the Braves brought up Jose Constanza to play in their outfield. The Braves then went out and traded for Michael Bourn. These two moves gave Atlanta something they have not had in a long time: impact speed. Michael Bourn is major league leader in stolen bases, and Constanza has some wheels. These two replaced Jordan Schafer and Nate Mclouth, who did not provide the Braves with a lot of production, let alone speed.

Constanza was hitting well in the minors before his call up, posting a line of .312 BA/4 3B/23 SB/.361 OBP. Since he was called up, he has played in every game for the Atlanta Braves. Fredi Gonzalez has done his best to keep him in the lineup. Now that Chipper is back, Constanza will be fighting to get playing time from Jason Heyward and Martin Prado in the outfield.

Bourn is having a good year with Houston/Atlanta, posting a line of .304 BA/27 2B/7 3B/41 SB. He has also added 67 runs to that stat line. Bourn brings the Braves a fast and consistent hitter to the top of the lineup. He will fit very nicely in to the lineup, getting plenty of chances to score runs and steal bases with quality bats behind him: Prado, Brian McCann, and Freddie Freeman.

Fantasy Impact

The Braves really needed to make these moves to help themselves as the season goes along. Bourn is a must start fantasy option, but you should see his runs increase because of the bats behind him. Constanza appears to have gained Gonzalez’s trust, and should see some quality playing time. He is owned in basically no ESPN leagues (0.4%) and 1% of Yahoo leagues. If his numbers are not good enough for the stretch, he is worth a look for next year, especially if this is Chipper’s last year.


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