Braves trade Hanson to Angels, cut ties with Jurrjens

Pitchers Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens have been in career-decline mode since the 2011 All-Star break, and by the end of the day Friday both were ex-Braves.

The Braves traded Hanson to the Los Angeles Angels on Friday for hard-throwing reliever Jordan Walden, and non-tendered Jurrjens before Friday’s deadline for teams to offer contracts to their unsigned arbitration-eligible players.

Atlanta reliever Peter Moylan was also non-tendered. He and Jurrjens are now free agents and the Braves haven’t ruled out re-signing Moylan, perhaps to a minor-league deal.

The Hanson trade clears up more than $3 million in payroll that could help the Braves fill their remaining needs in left field and a couple of bench spots. But general manager Frank Wren said money wasn’t the reason for the trade.

He said it was about opening a rotation spot for one of the Braves young starters. Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado might now compete for the fifth spot in the rotation behind  Kris Medlen, Tim Hudson and left-handers Mike Minor and Paul Maholm.

“We wanted to make sure there was an opportunity for our young pitchers to break through in the spring, and the way we were set up there really wasn’t a spot,” Wren said. “So we were focused on trying to use some of our excess starting pitching to find a power bullpen arm.”

“I’m not saying it doesn’t give us some more payroll flexibility, but that wasn’t the primary motivator.”

Walden, 25, has a fastball that’s been clocked as high as 100 mph. The 6-foot-5, 235-pound Texan had 32 saves and a 2.98 ERA in an All-Star season in 2011, but pitched in a setup role in 2012 and had a 3.46 ERA in 45 appearances, with 48 strikeouts and 18 walks in 39 innings

He gives the Braves another setup man for closer Craig Kimbrel, joining lefties Eric O’Flaherty, Jonny Venters and Luis Avilan in what should remain one of baseball’s top bullpens.

For Jurrjens, Friday’s move capped a precipitous fall from grace. An All-Star in 2011, he made $5.5 million in 2012 while going just 3-4 with a 6.89 ERA in 11 games (10 starts) in the majors, and spent much of the season at Triple-A Gwinnett after a demotion in late April.

After going 12-3 with a 1.87 ERA in 16 starts before the 2011 All-Star break, Jurrjens is 4-7 with a 6.42 ERA in 18 major league starts since. Still just 26 (27 in January), he’s been plagued for two years by a balky knee and pitched while wearing a brace last season.

Jurrjens might have commanded at least $5.5 million in arbitration despite his struggles. His salary had already been eliminated from the team’s budget, as they knew going into the offseason that he would either be traded or non-tendered.

Hanson is eligible for arbitration for the first time and was likely to get a raise to around $4 million, after going 13-10 with a career-worst 4.48 ERA in 31 starts during his second consecutive injury-plagued season. Walden is still a year from arbitration and will make well below $1 million.

As in the case of Jurrjens, Hanson’s ERA has ballooned and his velocity has decreased during the past two seasons, at least in part due to injuries.

“His arm is healthy, he’s just kind of developed into a liltle different style of pitcher the last few years,” Wren said. “And with that new style it’s moved him back in our rotation.”

Hanson would have competed for the final rotation spot in the spring if he weren’t traded. Now it’ll likely be Delgado or Teheran, and the Braves expect to have emerging standout Brandon Beachy back by midseason after he completes his rehab from elbow surgery.

With Hanson’s salary off the books, the Braves have even more flexibility in their pursuit of a left fielder (assuming Martin Prado moves to third base, which is still the plan). It’s believed the Braves have about $10 million or slightly more for a left fielder and two bench spots.

Versatile free-agent outfielder Reed Johnson, acquired from the Cubs at the July trade deadline, is a candidate to be brought back by the Braves for a bench spot.

With trade-targeted outfielder Denard Span off the market after being dealt from Minnesota to Washington on Thursday, and the Rockies’ high asking price — reportedly two top prospects — for Dexter Fowler, the Braves might turn to more expensive options (in terms of salary) on the free-agent or trade markets.

Shane Victorino, Cody Ross, Angel Pagan and Ryan Ludwick are among free-agent oufielders they’ve discussed, but all have drawbacks or are currently overpriced.

Of the known trade options, the player many Braves fans want most is Arizona right fielder Justin Upton, the brother of new Braves center fielder B.J. Upton. He could move to left field and give the Braves two Uptons and Jason Heyward for an utterly dynamic outfield.

But for now, Justin Upton still seems unlikely for the Braves, who won’t trade shortstop Andrelton Simmons, the player that Arizona GM Kevin Towers covets. The Braves would have to persuade him to take a package built around other players and/or prospects.

It could be a interesting few days at the Winter Meetings that begin Monday in Nashville.

On Friday morning, Wren called Hanson to say there was bad news — he’d been traded — but that at least he was going back home. He’s from Southern California.

Hanson, 26, was 45-32 with a 3.61 ERA in four seasons with the Braves but has fallen off significantly in the past 1-1/2 seasons while dealing with shoulder and back problems and adjustments to his delivery.

Like Jurrjens, Hanson’s slide began at the 2011 All-Star break. After going 10-4 with a 2.44 ERA and .190 opponents’ average in 17 starts that year before the break, Hanson has posted a 14-13 record,  4.96 ERA and .277 opponents’ average in 36 starts since.

.

840 comments Add your comment

Billy

November 30th, 2012
1:24 pm

First, I guess!

RBI

November 30th, 2012
1:25 pm

I like this deal.

PMC

November 30th, 2012
1:28 pm

Hope they can find a good left fielder that can lead off.

scrooge

November 30th, 2012
1:28 pm

Last, cause nobody cares.

Zoobs

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

No more Opera or TnG for Tommy Boy

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

I read about this on another site and i was like why do they need another releiver this now makes sense no go get willingham or pagan or a lf walden was good so we got him eric johanny and kimbell hard to beat

Sangiusepe

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

What?!?!? Hanson is a stud, albeit injury prone. Walden is a good additon but I’d rather have Hanson!

Nice Move

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

It’s like Frank Wren is listening to all the bloggers.

BravesFanInBama

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

Not only do they dump a struggling pitcher, but they free up cap space AND get a good reliever that could probably take Durbins spot if he does not re-sign.

Great move!

Braves Fan For Life

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

Tells me there is something more in the works.

Braves Fan For Life

November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

Tells me there is something more in the works.

BUGGSY

November 30th, 2012
1:31 pm

Good trade stay tuned folks more to come from mr.Wren..GO BRAVES..

BravesFanInMaine

November 30th, 2012
1:33 pm

agreed Braves Fan For Life

ryan

November 30th, 2012
1:33 pm

Shane Victrino !

Toy Roy Boy

November 30th, 2012
1:33 pm

Looks like this freed up $4 million & the reportedly $10 already available to get a LF might allow Braves to trade for Justin Upton. Just saying…

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:33 pm

yeah and we have pitching remember beachy he coming back and two studs in the minors we needed to get rid of someone i liked tommy but if it gets us another of than im all for it or third baseman but i think prado is going back to third

AndyH33

November 30th, 2012
1:33 pm

I absolutely LOVE this deal! Saving the $4 million is huge, Hanson presents a SERIOUS injury risk, and Walden is young and already has a track record of success. Not to mention that we have him for at least 4 more seasons (1 at minimum, 3 at arbitration). The money is great for the short term, but if Walden is a solid Pen arm and Hanson either struggles to stay healthy or to maintain his velo, this could be a total steal.

DRC

November 30th, 2012
1:34 pm

Why did they not make the deal w/ the Twins? They could have traded Hanson to the Twins for CF/leadoff hitter Span and slide Upton over to RF. Instead the Nationals now have Span.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:34 pm

Braves must be about to go after Hamilton

Big Ed

November 30th, 2012
1:34 pm

A good deal frees salary and braves get a quality reliever.

Amber Girl

November 30th, 2012
1:35 pm

I smell a trade. Go Braves!!

Erin

November 30th, 2012
1:35 pm

This is a great trade. Now they will go after Angel Pagan or Victorio. They also get a great young RH arm in the pen. Waldon is a stud 32 saves in 2011 and All-Star. Braves can start the year with Delgado or Tearan as the 5th starter than in July or August we will have Beachy.

DRC

November 30th, 2012
1:36 pm

Oops, slid Upton over the LF.

Justin

November 30th, 2012
1:36 pm

Love the trade! Now go get BJ’s little brother!!! The Upton brothers paired with Heyward would give us the best OF in the league. And what better motivation for BJ than to play along side his brother! I think they would push each other and Heyward. It would take a hit on our prospects, but it would be worth it IMO.

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

shane victerno stinks and span would of been nice but we were better with bourn than him maybe we are trying to get money for bourn i hope it s not him tho like him but he can t hit a 97 mph fastball down the middle we can do better

David E.

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

We need a left fielder who doesn’t strike out as much as Uggla and Upton. We have power and now we need someone who can get on base with regularity. OBP is going to be vital for whoever we get this time.

BJ Upton

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

Freeing up money to go get my brother for LF? I like it. I’ll stay tuned Frankie…

JTK

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

Dude hello we have a right fielder his name is Jason heyward and i like this move walden is a power righty

MikeM

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

Not sure I like this deal. Traded a starter for a reliever? Is he a right hander pitcher? Guess he becomes right handed set up guy? Would have likd to have gotten more. maybe a minor league prospect thrown in. Guess that free up a starter spot for the younger, cheaper arms.

BraveOne

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

DOB, with this move and Upton’s salary, how much does this give the Braves to pursue a LF?

Playoffs!!!

November 30th, 2012
1:37 pm

DRC–The Braves were not that interested in Span

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:38 pm

Braves will not get Justin Upton. The only player the D-Backs want from the Braves is Andrelton Simmons and the Braves absolutely will not trade him. Forget Upton.

cornjolio

November 30th, 2012
1:38 pm

nice move !

lets get a stud in LF !

Brock

November 30th, 2012
1:38 pm

Braves Fan For Life
November 30th, 2012
1:30 pm

Tells me there is something more in the works.

David O’Brien wrote, second sentence ….It frees up about $4 million to pursue a left fielder, which is the reason for the deal.

I am so glad this bum is gone. Couldn’t stand to watch him pitch with that stupid delivery. Good riddance!

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:40 pm

upton all we would have to give up is simmons and at least another aem they want a ss from what i heard

BV

November 30th, 2012
1:40 pm

I’ve been hoping for this for MONTHS! Maybe the Angels will get more than 5 1/3 innings out of Hanson with each start. This guy was overated & it’s about time they dropped the dead weight.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:40 pm

Can you imagine an outfield of Josh Hamilton, BJ Upton, and Heyward?

We Will Get Fooled Again

November 30th, 2012
1:40 pm

Shrewd move. Walden has power stuff and should thrive in the NL. This also gives us some funds to improve the offense.

Wren probably learned his lesson from getting burned holding on to Jurrjens last year.

stottsera

November 30th, 2012
1:40 pm

DOB, where do you get 4 million from? From this link? http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2012/11/arbitration-eligibles-atlanta-braves.html

or do you do your own estimates and if so, how?

Angry acworth man

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

Here comes Josh Hamilton!!! Hopefully….

Toy Roy Boy

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

Walden replaces Durbin. Now go getcha a LF. Wren is on the move. I like it.

GoaskBK

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

Ya’ll seem to have forgotten that Hanson is a Scott Boras client. The Braves wanted to get something for him before he signs somewhere else after next season. I like the move already…..

One-Eyed Mac

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

I liked Hanson, but it’s really a pretty good return for a salary saving deal.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

matty b, would you give up a young player that will probably own the gold glove at SS for 10 years for Justin Upton? I wouldn’t

Puma

November 30th, 2012
1:41 pm

I guess this was more about the money than Hanson’s value as a player. Probably could not have worked out any better for him though being a SoCal kid.

DOB – do the Braves still try to sign Durbin you think?

JustinUpton

November 30th, 2012
1:42 pm

Ya BJ! I’ll be a Brave in no time!

Norm

November 30th, 2012
1:42 pm

Great move…even a healthy Hanson gave up to way to many HR’s and SB’s

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:42 pm

165 million for 8 yrs is what i dont think we have 20 million in the bank right now and i dont think we would spend that much on josh for 8 yrs

adam

November 30th, 2012
1:42 pm

Kerry – Ahmed, Delado or Teheran, and another top prospect might get it done

MidTown Joe

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

I’m glad they found a taker for Hanson.

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

i wouldn t either but the arizona d backs want a mlb ss that s what their looking for i wouldnt do it either not for justin upton

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

adam, Why? It would be a stupid move to trade all of that talent for one guy, especially Simmons. I think we learned our lesson on that with Texeira.

jimmy

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

ok think about this a minute. They still had 12 million left (BJ get 13 the first year) so they didn’t need the savings for Pagan or Victorinio. And if there is a tarde for an out fielder it would cost a pitcher most likely and now you really are cutting into your rotation if you trade another one. So there is something different afoot here. Either a different position is about to be dealt, lower minor leaguers, or a much more expensive LF is being looked at. Hmmmmmm

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

i wouldn t either but the arizona d backs want a mlb ss that s what their looking for i wouldnt do it either not for justin upton

CrazyUGA

November 30th, 2012
1:44 pm

This was a bad move, will bite us in the behind.

BUGGSY

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

@KerryB Your close big things are in the works..Rumor is Braves in talks with 3 clubs and 2 FA,s.we will know by more by sat. evening could be HUGE glad to be a Braves Fan!!

splendid splinter

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

Any chance the Braves will trade Walden for a left fielder? After all – they have one of the best if not the best bull pen in the majors. Maybe what one of the other teams want/need is a closer to let their potential left fielder go.

Toy Roy Boy

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

Braves have that other superstar phenom SS prospect to trade. His name evades my cranium’s where with all at this tenous & precise moment.

The hole in Uggla'a bat

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

I am fired up. Just talked to Frank and it is either Xavier Nady, Jonny Gomes, or Marlon Byrd to play left field. Gonna be a great year. Also < i just figured out a new fly squat curl so I can work on enlarging my third quad muscle. That will give me even more power. That is really all I need to improve on last season.

The hole in Uggla'a bat

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

I am fired up. Just talked to Frank and it is either Xavier Nady, Jonny Gomes, or Marlon Byrd to play left field. Gonna be a great year. Also < i just figured out a new fly squat curl so I can work on enlarging my third quad muscle. That will give me even more power. That is really all I need to improve on last season.

Gene

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

Probably a good move. Good luck to Hanson.

Justin

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

@kerryb…. That’s why it is called negotiations. They want Simmons, but I also think they are ready to move Justin Upton. We have another SS prospect in Ahmed and some top prospect pitching that they might tip the scale. It is a long shot I know, but it is not out of the possibility.

Heymerred

November 30th, 2012
1:46 pm

Adam – I like Ahmed but I would do that deal in a heartbeat. Im tired of waiting around for Teheran and Simmons will be a staple at SS for us for a long time.

I wouldnt trade for Upton though if it required Simmons.

Mr Pitts

November 30th, 2012
1:47 pm

“It’s like Frank Wren is listening to all the bloggers.”

I’m neutral of the Hanson move, but I really believe Wren is watching these boards and falling for the nitwit stat fest. Weird stuff.

By the way, How many saves above WAR is this new guy? Perhaps somebody could cut and paste a few decades of relief pitching statistics so we can get to the bottom of the WHIPs WARs, OBSs, OPSs.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:47 pm

I’m glad this move was made because Hanson was beginning to be the second coming of Derrick Lowe and now it opens up a permanent spot for Medlin and one of the young guys.

Hammering Hank 42

November 30th, 2012
1:47 pm

Great move, I never like Hanson, he is all arm and will burn out in a few years. Now we need a big bopper bat.

dawg4life

November 30th, 2012
1:47 pm

I like the idea of having both the Upton brothers here…

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:48 pm

salty good catcher elvis mlb ss look at the pitcher matt harrison gem and the closer name not coming up he was great to yeah it did i wouldn t do it either i just know they were asking texas for their ss profior how ever u speelll his name i trade them what s his name pasternicky

Glenn

November 30th, 2012
1:48 pm

arbitration for Hanson would cost the Braves about 4-5 M. Walden will probably arbitration about 1 M…

Slidder

November 30th, 2012
1:48 pm

I like this move. Now the Braves can invest that $4 million in a conservative money market fund at a guaranteed 2%, for an annual return of $80,000. In ten years, they can turn that original investment into nearly $5 million! Way to go Braves!

Bravothusiast

November 30th, 2012
1:48 pm

This is something to get very excited about! Tommy always teased us with his potential. His velocity has been dropping significantly the past few years and the inside of his shoulder probably looks like hamburger meat. Walden is a great reliever with big time strikeout ability and under team control for a while. The money we save from dumping Hanson can allow FW to sign another big bat, possibly Swisher. Or he could go after a Pagan/Victorino/Ichiro to leadoff AND resign Reid Johnson. Or, as some have suggested, this allows him enough $$ to pay BJ’s lil bro if we were to trade for him. This is a great move.

Largo

November 30th, 2012
1:49 pm

Todd - Lawrenceville

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

WOW, Frank Wren do not need any help with all the blogging GM’s here… A trade cannot be evaluated until the player hit the diamond…. Let Frank do his job and how about just reding about it. When teh Braves have an opening for General Manager, I am sure they will pluck oneof you from his blog…

Lost Cause

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

Great deal! I give Frank Wren a B so far! paid too much for Upton experiment, but put the power back in the lineup. I smell a another free-agent purchase coming our way.

chc4

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

Love this. Hanson was compromised by injury and bum shoulders simply don’t get better.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

This is good for Hanson because he grew up in that area and was an Angels fan growing up.

Christian

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

How on earth are the Braves expected to be competitive with tightwad owners in Liberty Media combined with the league’s worst TV deal hamstringing their budget?. I hate this trade. The bullpen was already a strength, and we just gave away a promising SP for something we didn’t need. And don’t try to tell me about saving money with both Chipper’s and JJ’s salaries coming off the books.

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

they want mlb ss tho whicj proficfor and simmons are not a prospect from what i read we will see

Big Donnie

November 30th, 2012
1:50 pm

VICTORINO TIME PLEASE

mad~catfish

November 30th, 2012
1:51 pm

ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick, ryan ludwick,

Andy

November 30th, 2012
1:51 pm

Name ideas for the Braves pen with all the velocity we will have?

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:51 pm

Matty b, your posts give me a headache trying to read.

Toy Roy Boy

November 30th, 2012
1:52 pm

Yes. Ahmad. That’s his el namo. Trade him & Delgado or Tejeran for Justin Upton. Now.

PMC

November 30th, 2012
1:52 pm

Would LOVE to have Pagan for 2 years.

Cobby Box

November 30th, 2012
1:52 pm

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Wes Jorga

November 30th, 2012
1:52 pm

David Wright?

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

christian go look at the a’s starting rotation and look at their salaries u don t have to spend to win because their rotation is one of the best in the league and not one of them makes 5 million dollars their farm system is top notch

SA

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

How much of the Boras effect did this trade have? As in we aren’t gonna pay your inflated future demands!

Love the trade

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

christian go look at the a’s starting rotation and look at their salaries u don t have to spend to win because their rotation is one of the best in the league and not one of them makes 5 million dollars their farm system is top notch

BravesFanInBama

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

Some of these comments seriously make my head hurt…

Stop the the Hampton dreams…please, just stop.

How is this a bad move? The guy has LOST velocity on his fastball and his injuries will only continue to get worse. Have you not seen his throwing motion? The human shoulder/arm is not designed to throw like that. The wear and tear on his shoulder has already taken a huge hit on his velocity.

I think the Braves either sign Victorino (which I don’t think I am thrilled with) or trade for Fowler…

Obviously the other option would be to trade for Upton. There are signs pointing to this, but at the same time, would it be worth trading so many prospects?

I am pretty excited to see what happens. Wren seems to be trying to get everything done as soon as possible…which, as a fan, is awesome!

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

Todd, what do you think blogs are for?????

adam

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

kerry – Like I said we are not giving up Simmons. Absolutely no chance. I would easily give up Ahmed, Delgado or Teheran and another top prospect for Justin Upton. We wouldn’t really have a leadoff hitter but we would have a formidable lineup.

sandra

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

Hamilton would be great. but the braves still do not have the money

NeverNeverLand

November 30th, 2012
1:54 pm

Sounds like a deal! Hope they have no thoughts of letting Simmons go. We will take another Upton and a Victorino, but not for Simmons.

Shane Victorino

November 30th, 2012
1:55 pm

*Knock knock*

Toy Roy Boy

November 30th, 2012
1:56 pm

What about Simmons straight up for J.Upton ? Then let Ahmad & Preacher Pastornicky battle for SS in ST ? What do you bastarditeee GM’s think ?

adam

November 30th, 2012
1:56 pm

Completely differet from Tex deal. Upton has three years left and will want to resign with the Braves. Upton brothers dream to play with one another. Pointless in my eyes to keep Delgado and Teheran both at Triple A. Plus we have Gilmartin who could be really good as well.

kerryb

November 30th, 2012
1:56 pm

Christian, the idea of Hanson being a promising young pitcher ended 2 seasons ago.

matty b

November 30th, 2012
1:56 pm

WHy are we talking about david wright congrats to him he got his money this morning he s a met we don t need him

Amber Girl

November 30th, 2012
1:57 pm

I like this Great move. I agree Wren talking to other clubs. Did you ever consider it might not be a leftfielder? How about 3rd base.

Add your comment