I already know what you’re thinking. I am too. Dan Uggla, that guy who hit 30 home runs a year a few years ago while striking out more than Mark McGwire in his final season? Yes, that Dan Uggla. The Braves has just brought up AAA infield prospect Phil Gosselin and, while not yet official, it is becoming apparent that corresponding move will be for the Braves to either trade or DFA Uggla.
Uggla’s best season was in 2010 when he hit .287 with 33 home runs and 105 RBI. In true Marlins fashion, he was flipped to the Braves before the 2011 season. It was another move that looked awful for the Marlins at the time, but panned out years later, as Uggla never had the same production value. His batting average dropped every season, from .233 in 2011 to .169 this season. His power numbers dropped as well, he only has 2 home runs and 10 RBI this season in 130 at bats.
So why bring Uggla in? The classic new surroundings resurgence theory. Uggla was never a batting average guy, but he could crush baseballs. Now, he’s having trouble doing even that in Atlanta and he’s not an everyday player. Giving him more playing time in New York could bring back his long ball stroke. Brian Roberts has been hitting a little bit better lately after an abysmal start to the season. However, for a team that has trouble scoring runs I’d rather see a guy who can hit one out at a moment’s notice than a guy that will his .265 with 2 RBI over a few weeks. Advantage Uggla.
The largest drawback of Uggla, other than his questionable ability to still play baseball, is his contract. He is making $13,000,000 both this season and in 2015. Therefore, the only way adding Uggla to the roster makes any sense would be in a trade so the Braves can eat almost all of his contract. The Yankees are full of bloated contracts, we do not need another one for a guy we already know isn’t very good anymore. We also have Rob Refsnyder waiting in the minors. Over the last few weeks reports would make fans think he is the next coming of Babe Ruth.
Dan Uggla is certainly not the hot trade the Yankees need to get over the hump. For that we need 4 starting pitchers. However, adding Uggla to the squad gives power to a team than is not scoring a lot of runs this season. If the Braves are willing to eat his contract, he could be a low risk mid reward guy for the Bronx.