Updated with reaction: Braves trade for Bourn

The Braves have made a trade hours before the deadline, acquiring outfielder Michael Bourn from the Astros.

The left-handed center fielder was acquired for center fielder Jordan Schafer and three minor-league pitchers, left-hander Brett Oberholtzer and right-handers Paul Clemens and Juan Abreu.

Schafer is currently on the disabled list with a finger fracture. The Braves are also without centerfielder Nate McLouth, who is on the disabled list with an abdominal strain.

“I thank the Braves for sticking by me the entire time,” Schafer said while packing up his locker. “With everything I’ve been through, they’ve been great to me. It’s a business. They have to do what’s best for the team. They have to what’s best to try to win a World Series this year.

“It sucks, truthfully. I was comfortable here. At the same time I’m excited to go there. Any time you get traded the team obviously wants you. I’m excited to go over there and start fresh and try to start winning.

“I don’t know if the injuries had anything to do with it. The first one set things back quite a bit. Like I said, it’s a business. It happens. I’m not the first player to be traded. I’m not going to be the last. I’m thankful for the opportunity they gave me.”

Other reaction to the deal:

David Ross: “We are so banged up right now, a move for a guy that has some gold gloves out there, a true leadoff hitter, is something we’ve been lacking. They like to put [Martin] Prado in the two-hole and I think that makes our lineup a lot deeper -  getting a true leadoff hitter, someone who can steal bags, someone who is healthy. We are looking forward to that.

“It’s stinks to lose Schaf. We enjoy each other in here and we are a real close-knit group. When you lose a teammate it’s never fun. It’s one of those things that it’s part of baseball. We will move on. He will move on. We wish him the best. Hopefully Michael Bourn gets in here soon and contributes.

“[Schafer] was getting a real chance here. I think they liked him. He did some good things for us this year. He scored a lot of runs. He stole some bags while he was here. He was starting to come into his own. He’s had to learn on the fly a little bit with some guys down, but he was doing a good job with it. I think he’s got a bright future ahead of him.”

Dan Uggla: “Michael Bourn is a great player. I’ve heard nothing but good things about him as a person, too. We are excited to have him. We are sad to lose Schaf. He worked his butt off to get up here.

“Michael is going to help us out a lot. He is a legit gold glove center fielder. We are excited to have him. … He’s established. He’s one of the fastest guys in the league. He plays an unbelievable center field. He’s going to put together good ABs and get on base. That’s what he’s always done.

“[Schafer] might be a little frustrated because we all know how much he loved it here. We all loved him just as much. He has really improved his game since the last time I saw him in 2009.”

Here is the team release:

The Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros announced today that the two clubs have completed a five-player trade. The Braves have acquired outfielder Michael Bourn and cash from the Astros in exchange for outfielder Jordan Schafer and minor-league pitchers Juan Abreu (RH), Paul Clemens (RH) and Brett Oberholtzer (LH). Bourn will wear uniform number 24.

Bourn, 28, is a two-time Gold Glove Award winner and in the midst of perhaps his finest offensive season.  In addition to his .303 batting average, which currently ranks 13th in the National League, Bourn leads the majors with 39 stolen bases and leads the NL with 28 infield hits.  With 32 RBIs this season, Bourn is just six shy of his career high of 38 set in 2010.  Since June 1, he is tied for the NL lead with 72 hits and he ranks fourth with a .336 batting average.  On Friday night, Bourn snapped a career-best 13-game hitting streak in which he batted .424 (25-for-59).

“Michael Bourn is a perfect fit for our club, which focuses on speed and defense to match up with our strong pitching,” Executive Vice President and General Manager Frank Wren said. “This trade gives us the first true leadoff hitter we’ve had in a number of years.”

Bourn began his career with the Philadelphia Phillies organization after being taken in the fourth round of the 2003 June Draft.  He appeared in the postseason with the Phillies in 2007 before being traded to the Astros prior to the 2008 campaign. The Houston native batted .285 with a league-leading 61 stolen bases in 2009, then became a National League All-Star in 2010, when he batted .265 with a league-best 52 steals.

In 663 career games over his six-year major league career, Bourn has batted .271 with 586 hits and 212 stolen bases in 256 attempts (83%).  Since 2008, he has led all of baseball with 193 stolen bases.  Bourn is signed through the 2011 season.

Schafer, who turns 25 in September, is the only player in the trade who has Major League experience for the Braves.  He has appeared in 52 games for Atlanta this season and is currently on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured left long finger.  He is a .223 career hitter in 102 big-league games (2009 & 2011).

Abreu, 26, has appeared in 41 games this season for Class-AAA Gwinnett and is 4-2 with a 2.25 ERA. He came to the Braves as minor league free agent in 2009.

Clemens, 23, was selected by the Braves in the seventh round of the 2008 June Draft and has gone 6-5 with a 3.73 ERA in 20 starts at Class-AA Mississippi this season.

Oberholtzer, 22, was Atlanta’s eighth-round pick in the 2008 June Draft and is 9-9 with a 3.74 ERA in 21 games at Mississippi this season.

425 comments Add your comment

Justin

July 31st, 2011
10:04 am

RT @jaysonst: #Braves agree on deal for Bourn. Hou gets J Schafer, lhp Brett Oberholtzer, rhp Paul Clemens & rhp Juan Abreu.

Justin

July 31st, 2011
10:05 am

We got our man! Go Braves!

Few_Proud_DaBraves

July 31st, 2011
10:08 am

Great move. None of the Big 4 included in the deal. Welcome to ATL Michael Bourn

Cory

July 31st, 2011
10:09 am

Good to se a move. How long is Bourn under contract for?

DC Braves Fan

July 31st, 2011
10:09 am

DOB — any chance Braves will acquire another OF to platoon with Heyward and just to give them more of a RH presence off the bench?

gettotheplayoffs

July 31st, 2011
10:10 am

Another great job by Frank Wren by NOT giving up Teheran, Delgado, Vizcaino or Minor…and still got who they wanted. GREAT JOB!!!

Ted M

July 31st, 2011
10:10 am

tell us about those prospects we gave up.

nola braves fan

July 31st, 2011
10:11 am

Fantastic trade. Didn’t have to give up any of the big 4 pitching prospects. Gets a player who will add exactly what braves need. Speed (top of the league speed), great glove, makes contact.

Well done Frank Wren … now how about one more arm for the pen. I think EOF, JV and CK’s arms are about to fall off!

Ted M

July 31st, 2011
10:11 am

Bourn, 28, is hitting .303/.363/.403 in 473 plate appearances, and he leads MLB with 39 steals. The Scott Boras client has $1.45MM remaining on his contract this year and is arbitration eligible for 2012 before hitting free agency. The Astros’ outfield purge continues, as they sent Hunter Pence to the Phillies on Friday.

Reggie

July 31st, 2011
10:12 am

Great move…we gave up nothing to get the top leadoff man in the game.We still have ammunition left to make another deal…either Quienton or shortstop.

Tom

July 31st, 2011
10:14 am

DHD

July 31st, 2011
10:14 am

GREAT deal by Wren. Much better for us than Pence for Philly.

Good Riddance to Schafer

July 31st, 2011
10:14 am

Good Riddance to a DO NOTHING Druggie….glad to see you gone Jordan – you have done nothing for us….other than be an embarassment. So Good Riddance and Don’t Let the Door Hit Ya, Where the Good Lord Split Ya.

Fly On The Wall

July 31st, 2011
10:15 am

Let the games begin…nice job FW…best wishes for JS.

1eyedJack

July 31st, 2011
10:15 am

Will he be in the lineup today?

twheele3

July 31st, 2011
10:15 am

Let’s bring back Francoeur to platoon with Heyward!

What would JULIO LUGO do?

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSss

orangebrave fka billy jack

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

Few_Proud_DaBraves

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

I doubt Quentin with his replacement getting hurt in minor. Maybe Willingham and the new rumor is Infante is trying to be re-aquired

nobody

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

What would it take to get a reliever? Or maybe even willingham or ludwick to platoon in left? Or do you think Braves are finished?

DogPound

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

Good trade…anymore to come today?

ExBraves Fan

July 31st, 2011
10:16 am

Still don’t think this guy is enough to carry them over. Jones injured. Heyworthless not hitting. Uggla hot now, but can he keep it up. McLousy is lousy. SS would not hit water if he fell out of a boat in the gulf of Mexico. Still strangled with Lowe and his mega contract. He’s worthless. I always said the Braves would rule the day they signed this guy. He has not been a $60M pitcher. More a $25 pitcher. This division and the NL crown belown to SF or Philly. Braves are still an after thought.

Big Earl

July 31st, 2011
10:17 am

Love Bourn, but is he another rental for the rest of this year only? Also, he’s another left handed hitter…need to see his splits vs lefties.

A Brave in Minnesota

July 31st, 2011
10:17 am

WOW……I hope he makes it to Atlanta in time to start the game today…….but I was glad to wake up to this kind of good news!!!

Hell of a trade to get this guy and not having to give up good pitching………it shows that Atlanta really wants to win after all!!! Bring on the Phils and Giants!!

Peter

July 31st, 2011
10:17 am

Dear “Pence-ylvania”,
Coming to a ballpark near you this fall: The BOURN Supremacy!!!

LET’S GO BRAVES!!!

phil

July 31st, 2011
10:18 am

Here’s hoping it works out for us. Schafer was fast but little else. Looks good on paper. Let’s see if Bourn actually does something before we celebrate too much!

Ted M

July 31st, 2011
10:18 am

After seeing top outfield trade candidates Carlos Beltran and Hunter Pence land with National League rivals, Braves GM made a splash today by acquiring center fielder Michael Bourn and cash from the Astros for center fielder Jordan Schafer, southpaw Double-A starter Brett Oberholtzer, righty Double-A starter Paul Clemens, and righty Triple-A reliever Juan Abreu. The Astros announced the deal via press release.

Schafer, 24, figures to replace Bourn as the Astros’ regular center fielder once he returns from the disabled list for a finger injury. He owns a .223/.310/.303 line in 414 big league plate appearances, coming in ‘09 and this year.

None of the three pitchers are top 50 prospects, but they did rank ninth, 26th, and 27th respectively for the Braves on Baseball America’s preseason rankings, and the team has a highly-regarded farm system. Oberholtzer, 22, ranked ninth and is seen as a potential third or fourth starter in the big leagues. Clemens and Abreu both have big upside and impressive fastballs.

Another GM

July 31st, 2011
10:18 am

The Braves made the smart deal. They have needed a lead off hitter at the the of the lineup for years. Kudos to Frank Wren for pulling this deal off without trading essentially anyone. When has the Braves had a player who can steal bases, and now they have the guy who has led the major leagues. Great for this year and hopefully the Braves can hold onto him in the future.

NorCal Brave

July 31st, 2011
10:18 am

I’m a Bourn again believer in our chances to get to the WS.

David

July 31st, 2011
10:19 am

Now we need to go get Upton. I would love an outfield of Upton, Bourn and Heyward….. Move Prado to 3rd. AWSOME!!!!!!!

WinderDawg

July 31st, 2011
10:19 am

If he comes in here and stops hitting, we have a problem….

Pendleton was the problem but we still can’t hit

Puma

July 31st, 2011
10:19 am

Everyone done talking smack about F Wren? Job well done!

So when can we expect him in uniform?

pete

July 31st, 2011
10:20 am

Bourn is signed thru next year

Kevin in Chatty

July 31st, 2011
10:20 am

WOW! Never thought we could get him without including a top prospect.

Nateforpresident

July 31st, 2011
10:20 am

We need a good bat for the bench now and a bullpen guy, hopefully one from the padress not named chad.

Righty

July 31st, 2011
10:20 am

Now they can go after Willingham or Ludwick to platoon with Heyward and maybe a right handed reliever and we’re good.

clint

July 31st, 2011
10:20 am

Looks like a good trade for everyone involved.

Nateforpresident

July 31st, 2011
10:21 am

and no Frank Wren still didnt get us the big bat we needed just a fast guy.

BravesinTN

July 31st, 2011
10:21 am

LOVE IT! GO BRAVES!!!!

01HAWK

July 31st, 2011
10:22 am

Doubt Bourn will be here today with the trade being this morning. Time to go get Willingham from Oakland.

Send Heyward to AAA to get himself right.

Can we trade MCOUT ?

Reggie

July 31st, 2011
10:22 am

Did Braves just take lead over Falcons in title pursuit? (Update: Braves get Bourne)

ChattaVol

July 31st, 2011
10:22 am

How long a flight is it from Milwaukee to Atlanta?

Puma

July 31st, 2011
10:22 am

DOB – you said signed through 2011? Its through 2012 though right?

TommyC

July 31st, 2011
10:22 am

Big Earl, from an earlier DOB blog: “And while he’s a left-handed batter, he does fine against lefty pitchers: Bourn is hitting .281 with a .341 OBP against lefties, compared to .311/.372 vs. righties.”

BeegBoy25

July 31st, 2011
10:23 am

DOB, if the bravos do not trade for extra bullpen arm can Teheran, Minor, or Vizcaino help out in August and September?

Kyle

July 31st, 2011
10:24 am

Bourne has good splits. Hitting .310 vs righties this year and .284vLHP. Great move by Frank Wren!

Big Earl

July 31st, 2011
10:24 am

@ExBraves Fan… it’s “rue the day” not “rule the day”. Don’t use words you don’t know, shows ingnorance. But that wouldn’t take much considering your comments.

Brave Fan

July 31st, 2011
10:24 am

Braves team 42 Stolen bases, Micahel Bourn 39. Excellent move by the Braves. Nice to have an leadoff hitter who will be on base for the middle of our lineup.

B Mac is the man!

July 31st, 2011
10:24 am

Wow…great job by Frank Wrenn! Braves just took advantage of the Astros. We get the best available player for our needs without giving up a proven major leaguer or any high value prospects….

jumbo peanuts

July 31st, 2011
10:24 am

Wow, FW got a CF better that Ainkle

Big Earl

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

@ Kyle..thanks man. Good info. Makes the trade that much better!

Ted M

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

The Braves are gonna get Infante next… then call it team

spike

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

Wren significantly upgraded one of the two offensive black holes for nothing of real value. Great job, and definitely 2011 NL trade deadline winner. If Infante could be had for next to nothing, and Lugo dismissed, I wouldn’t mind either.

hawesg

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

Yes, good trade for both teams. This made too much sense for it not to happen, although with Ed Wade anything is possible.

Dave in Buford

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

Okay………now, THIS one makes sense. Schafer is another one who probably needed to move on. The Braves get a leadoff hitter (which they’ve been missing since Furcal left) and fill a need without giving up AAA pitching. Nice job.

Steven

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

The “big bat” we needed was already in the clubhouse…his name is Dan Uggla !!

Captain Lou Albano

July 31st, 2011
10:25 am

Ok I know everyone is happy about this trade, but so was everyone when we traded for Nate. So lets see how Bourn plays in a Braves uniform. In front of fans who actually expect you to play well, before we celebrate.

bravesfanforever

July 31st, 2011
10:26 am

“Michael Bourn is a perfect fit for our club, which focuses on speed and defense to match up with our strong pitching,” Executive Vice President and General Manager Frank Wren said. “This trade gives us the first true leadoff hitter we’ve had in a number of years.”

??????? Huh ????????

Was the Michael Bourn trade step one in that process???

Chop-It-Up All-star

July 31st, 2011
10:26 am

Speed never sleeps; October has the potential to be fun!!

Ambushbug

July 31st, 2011
10:26 am

Of all the players the Braves were rumored to be pursuing, Bourn is by far my first choice. He fills multiple holes on our team and I’ve never heard anything negative about his attitude. I would have been happy with Pence, but would have been sorely disappointed if we had gotten Upton.

Hugh Cheek

July 31st, 2011
10:27 am

Smart move. We get a big time player and trade an outfielder with a questionable past and limited production. Can’t believe we didn’t have to give them one of the 4 big pitching prospects.

Matt

July 31st, 2011
10:27 am

EBF, try spell check bro.

the truth...

July 31st, 2011
10:27 am

Great news but for all who say we gave up “NOTHING”….. don’t forget that many of the prospects are labeled as nothing by us fans who don’t know squat about the minor league prospects below AAA.

We won’t truely know how the trade works out until several years as far as those pieces Wren shipped off. Of course Wren wanted Schafer to blossom here and hold those arms for tomorrow…say 2013 and beyond….but when Jordan went down that did it.

The trade cannot help but be a plus for this year….and if we want to resign him next year we’ll have some money from Lowe’s last year if we even have him then…

Wish we had the Blank Jet to send for the young man and see him leading off this afternoon…ah well maybe next July 31 it’ll be Blank dispatching the jet for the new guys!!!

phil

July 31st, 2011
10:27 am

Trade Schafer…

TommyC

July 31st, 2011
10:27 am

Fantastic trade – Bourne is a definite upgrade over Schaefer, is under team control next year, and none of the Braves top farm talent were traded. True leadoff hitter – fastest man in the league and good OBP, multiple gold gloves, perfect center fielder.

Let’s hope we get an arm for the pen that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg:)

Another GM

July 31st, 2011
10:28 am

Cant believe anyone would be complaining about this deal. The Braves needed a CF more than anything on this team. Bourne will change the whole way opposing pitchers approach the Braves lineup. The Braves have big bats, Uggla is busting the ball, McCann is coming back, Heyward is just not hitting. Maybe the Braves will add a bat like Ludwick but does he help? Quentin will not be traded.

Charlie

July 31st, 2011
10:28 am

Martin Prado is the biggest winner in this. Batting second with Bourn on first and distracting the pitcher. Prado has to love this trade.

Bourn to be Wild...

July 31st, 2011
10:28 am

Good trade overall, since we didn’t give up much. An improvement over Schafer even though he strikes out a lot. 474 career K vs. 211 BB….20% of his plate appearances have resulted in strikeouts, and don’t count on Larry #2 to remedy that anytime soon. Although Larry #1 might share some tips in his role as player/coach.

Dum Dum Dugan

July 31st, 2011
10:28 am

Which is a better (AKA worse) Chip Caray-ism: “The new Bourn identity is that of a Brave!” or “The Bravos got Bourn on the 31st of July, folks!” ?

Big Earl

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

I’m in…splits are good AND he’s arb eligable next year AND we didn’t really give up anything…YEA!!! Great trade FW.

Patrick

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

Maybe best move in the past few years that will help now and next few years to come.

Puma

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

Bravesfanforever – yeah I had to roll my eyes on that Wren quote – built on speed and defense???

I think this works better for us than Pence or Beltran – disruptive top of the order guy, gonna give Prado and Chipper a lot more fastballs

Paul in Statesboro

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

@ big Earl somebody said yesterday that Bourne was batting 289 vs lefties even though he’s a LH

ExBraves Fan

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

Big earl: bite it smart @. You know what I meant. I did not realize that my high school English teacher was on this site grading us. It is a stupid posting site. Not 10th grade English smart ass.

TPM

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

One more right handed hitter please

Dent

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

Braves probably looking for a righted handed relief pitcher. Need someone solid to take some innings off of the big three.

DC Brave

July 31st, 2011
10:29 am

Someone said we were going for Omar Infante….could that be true?

bravesfanforever

July 31st, 2011
10:30 am

To follow up… The idea for trading for the horrible fielding Dan Uggla apparently was not just for offense but for defense as well. Putting inexperienced Martin Prado in LF was a defensive move. Being near the bottom in the majors in steals proves we are working towards speed… LOL!

Hey, great trade Frank Wren! Just playin with yah!

Robert

July 31st, 2011
10:30 am

Let’s just enjoy this and give FW some credit here. He held out and got the CF we need without giving up a top arm. Now a SS and a right handed bat in the OF would be icing on the cake. As far a pitching goes, why not bring up one or two of the young studs for middle inning duty?

Chall

July 31st, 2011
10:31 am

This was the right trade, Frank Wren got the job done. I wish there was a chance of signing Bourn to an extension, but Boras probably won’t go for that.

DOB is cool!

July 31st, 2011
10:31 am

With this guy hitting in front of Prado, the offense will be MUCH improved. Now can we release McClouth? And AlexGon could use some rest. How about trying to bring back Infante?

Bobby's Booger Finger

July 31st, 2011
10:31 am

Frank Wren continues to impress. What a move. Jordan will do fine in Houston. He will flourish now that no one is watching. Oberholtzer has great stuff. It was a fair deal all around.
Great job getting cash. Now let’s go spend it on a RH batting third catcher. We don’t need to go get a pitcher. Moylan is almost ready and we can bring up the babies when we expand the roster.

Banner229

July 31st, 2011
10:31 am

Great trade for the braves, with everything considered don’t give up top prospect need to go get infantie for depth.

DC Brave

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

It is not that we didn’t give up nothing….we just didn’t give up anything form this year, or next.

BravesFan

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

Love it! Good Job, Wren!

Kyle

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

Obviously he’ll lead off, but Bourn is hitting .333 w/RISP.

Mister Frisky

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

This is better than Pence.Great speed,defense,contact hitter.It’s Philly and Us.Giants offense still awful even with Beltran.

Just The Facts

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

Will be nice for some “small ball” opportunities in the playoffs when you are facing stud pitcher after stud pitcher. Maybe we can create more scoring chnaces by putting more pressure on the opposing pitcher. Once we lose McLouth, Lowe & Chipper contracts maybe we can retain him if he proves to be a main piece of the equation. Between now & then hopefully Boras will step out in front of a bus.

Busch leaguer

July 31st, 2011
10:32 am

What is Ed Wade smoking.? More or less a deal Bourn for Schaefer straight up. Did not give up a prospect rated in the top 100.

BRAVESFAN

July 31st, 2011
10:33 am

DOB, change the title to…and on the seventh day God gave Braves fans Bourn!

“Born to be alive” has to be his song when he goes to bat!

gojackets

July 31st, 2011
10:33 am

ExBravesfan- thanks for being an Ex.

Banner229

July 31st, 2011
10:33 am

Wouldn’t shock me if Schafer took off in Houston because he knows the Guy in center know… Which him the best luck a great talent

Chris Jones

July 31st, 2011
10:33 am

Move Lowe to the bullpen ASAP and bring up either Minor and/or Teheran. Braves do not need bullpen help. Lowe has pitched out of the bullpen and Minor/Teheran are an upgrade to Lowe as a starter.

Branch Rickey

July 31st, 2011
10:34 am

OUTSTANDING MOVE !

Gave up the disappointing Schafer & 4 prospects not ranked high for a true leadoff hitter that not only has speed, but is a gold glover.

Now we need to sign Bourn to a long-term contract.

Lets bring back Omar Infante !

Dent

July 31st, 2011
10:34 am

Enter your comments here

Joe

July 31st, 2011
10:35 am

My humble opinion says this is a BAD trade. Now watch Schafer turn into the next Grady Sizemore after he gets what really is his rookie season under his belt. Braves were winning with him in the lineup, and truth be told his potential has not even been measured or reached yet. Braves needed an outfielder with some POW in his bat, instead got a singles hitter.

John Mayberry Sr.

July 31st, 2011
10:35 am

That cat Born is faster than my man Willie Wilson!

Who do we need to cough up to pick up an Infante or bullpen help?

PhillieFan

July 31st, 2011
10:35 am

Very Nice Move. Congrats. The rest of the season and the playoffs should be fun. Love seeing both or teams really trying to do everything to win. I want this to be the NL version of the Yanks and Boston.

BRAVESFAN

July 31st, 2011
10:35 am

Just read my last comment and I want to stress I do not think Wren is God but sort of has the same power of deciding who lives and dies.

Ostrich Racer

July 31st, 2011
10:35 am

Great move. Schafer might be a star; Bourn already is.

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