Matt Kemp Traded by San Diego Padres to Atlanta Braves
A.J. Preller might ship away his entire Opening Day starting lineup by Major League Baseball's trading deadline on August 1st. The San Diego Padres general manager dealt right fielder Matt Kemp to the Atlanta Braves in exchange for Hector Olivera. Kemp is owed $21.5 million each of the next three seasons while Olivera is owed $41.75 million from 2017-20.
Both players are 31 years old and many baseball observers thought that the Padres would not find any suitors for Kemp. Despite having 23 home runs and 69 RBI's, the former Dodger has a .285 on base percentage and has struck out 100 times while walking only 16 times with San Diego. Meanwhile, Olivera is serving an 82 game suspension by MLB for domestic violence. It is the largest suspension ever handed out. The Braves converted the former Cuban star from third base to left field and he was hitting just .114 in Triple-A before the suspension. Olivera will be eligible for reinstatement on August 2nd.
With Kemp out of the picture, the Padres have cleared the way for Hunter Renfroe to receive a call-up to San Diego. The former Mississippi State star is batting .321 with 25 home runs and 87 RBI's for the Chihuahuas in 100 games this season. El Paso is in Las Vegas to begin the first of a big four game series with the second place 51's. Tim Hagerty will call the action beginning at 8pm tonight on 600 ESPN El Paso.