A's trade Olson to Braves in 5-player deal
The Oakland Athletics traded first baseman Matt Olson to the Atlanta Braves in exchange for outfielder Cristian Pache, catcher Shea Langeliers, and pitchers Ryan Cusick and Joey Estes on Monday, the Braves confirmed.
Olson is coming off a terrific All-Star campaign with the Athletics where he hit .271/.371/.540 with 39 home runs and 111 RBIs. The two-time Gold Glover is also highly regarded for his defense at first base, finishing last season third at his position in defensive runs saved, according to FanGraphs.
Atlanta gets club control over Olson for the next two campaigns, with the infielder projected to earn $12 million through salary arbitration this year.
On Monday, the Georgia native called the trade to his hometown bittersweet. He is the latest player to be dealt by the A's, who shipped pitcher Chris Bassitt to the Mets on Saturday. Oakland expects to continue tearing down the team.
Olson will presumably replace Freddie Freeman at first base for the reigning World Series champions.
Freeman, a free agent, is reportedly eyeing one of the Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, or Toronto Blue Jays as his next destination.
The Athletics are receiving four premium prospects in exchange for Olson, with Pache and Langeliers ranking No. 1 and No. 2 in the Braves' farm system before Monday's deal, according to MLB Pipeline.
Atlanta expected Pache, 23, to be a big part of its future outfield, but he struggled during limited duty at the big-league level, hitting .119/.157/.209 in 24 career games. Pache appeared in 89 games in the minors last season, slashing .265/.330/.414 with 44 RBIs and nine steals.
Langeliers was the Braves' first-round pick (ninth overall) in 2019. The 24-year-old backstop split his 2021 campaign between Double-A and Triple-A, hitting .256/.339/.494 with 22 home runs and 53 RBIs.
Cusick, another Atlanta first-rounder in 2021, posted a 2.76 ERA and 18.4 K/9 in 16 1/3 innings for Single-A Augusta last season.
The 20-year-old Estes made 20 starts for the same Augusta squad as Cusick, and the right-hander owned a 2.91 ERA and 0.96 WHIP in those contests.
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