"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 No. 24."
That was the team's release on the trade that finally will make Braves fans happy. It's been a frustrating last week as we've seen two big time bats in Carlos Beltran and Hunter Pence go to two of the best teams in all of baseball, the San Francisco Giants and Philadelphia Phillies, respectively.
The Braves had been in the middle of all types of rumors for a couple of weeks now, yet seemed unable to get a deal done. Well, they got the deal done this time and it works out extremely well for them.
Bourn is the speedy center fielder the Braves haven't had in quite a long time. The speedster is leading all of baseball in stolen bases with 39. He is the type of base-stealer that I really want the team to just let him go. Let him pick and choose his attempts, because it could really help a stagnant offense.
Along with his speed, Bourn is hitting .303 this season, which is .032 points higher than his career average. He has two Gold Gloves to his name and is one of the best defensive outfielders in the league.
The Phillies and the Giants got the two big bats that were available, I can't deny that. And while I really wanted Pence, I think the Phillies gave up too much for him. For what they gave up for Bourn, I am completely happy.
Going forward, Michael Bourn will be hitting leadoff for the Braves. As a 28-year-old, Bourn is entering him prime and won't be a free agent until 2013. If the Braves, as I'm sure they will, will give Bourn free reign on the basepaths, then he will really help the team out.
Bourn is game-changer because of his speed and his ability to use it. It should help hitters behind him see more fastballs, along with just getting everyone a little more pumped every time he swipes a bag.
Now, if the Braves can get healthy and finish the season strong and make the playoffs, they have a better chance of getting past the Phillies and Giants, more than likely anyway, and whichever team represents the NL Central.