|The Braves acquired 33-year-old corner outfielder Matt Diaz, a righty-hitting bench bat, from the Pirates for a player to be named. Diaz spent the 2006 through 2010 seasons in Atlanta. The Pirates acquired high Class A righthander Eliecer Cardenas on Sept. 20 to complete the deal.|
|Eliecer Cardenas, rhp
Born: Jan. 30, 1988 in Santiago, Dominican Republic.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 218. Bats: R. Throws: R.
Career Transactions: Signed as nondrafted free agent by Twins, May 24, 2006 … Selected by Braves from Twins in Rule 5 minor league draft, Dec. 9, 2010.
Cardenas spent three seasons in the Dominican Summer League and another in the Gulf Coast League before the Twins assigned him to a full-season club as a 22-year-old in 2010. He struck out 53 and walked 44 in 63 1/3 innings out of the Beloit bullpen, and Minnesota left him unprotected in the minor league Rule 5 draft, intriguing the Braves in the Triple-A phase. Cardenas pitches at 90-92 mph and throws a power slider at about 85 mph with tilt, giving him a strikeout pitch. He held Carolina League righties to a .144/.275/.168 batting line with three extra-base hits (all doubles) in 125 at-bats. He failed miserably in five Double-A relief appearances, so he may not be 40-man roster material this year, which would make him eligible for this year’s Rule 5 draft, too.
|Matt Diaz, rf/lf
Age: 33. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: Approximately $333,333 in 2011, then $2 million in 2012 (signed 2-year, $4.25 million deal for 2011-12).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.