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Shane Greene Removed as Braves Closer Less Than 10 Days After Trade from Tigers

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 10, 2019

Atlanta Braves pitcher Shane Greene throws to a Minnesota Twins batter during the ninth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2019, in Minneapolis. The Braves won 12-7. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton- King)
Andy Clayton-King/Associated Press

Shane Greene's time as the Atlanta Braves closer has come to a close.

Braves manager Brian Snitker said on Saturday that Mark Melancon will serve as the team's closer for the time being, according to David O'Brien of The Athletic. The move isn't necessarily permanent, however:

David O'Brien @DOBrienATL

Didn't say it would be permanent or anything like that. Just for now that's the plan. Let Greene get settled in and back getting good results. He does that and I'd guess he'll be back in the closer role or at least splitting duties. https://t.co/XNM6D1UxXu

Greene was acquired by the Braves on Aug. 31 in exchange for Joey Wentz and outfielder Travis Demeritte, who were sent to the Detroit Tigers. But he's struggled in his four appearances for Atlanta, blowing one save while giving up five total runs and nine hits in those contests.

His ERA sits at 13.50 with the Braves, while his WHIP is 3.00. Suffice to say, it's been a rocky start for Greene, who was an All-Star this season and was expected to lock down the late innings for Atlanta. With Detroit, he had 22 saves in 25 chances.

But Melancon, who was also acquired ahead of this season's trade deadline from the San Francisco Giants, isn't a stranger to the closer role, with 183 saves in his career. He had 33 saves for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2014, 51 for the Pirates in 2015 and 47 saves between the Pirates and Washington Nationals in 2016. 

"You know what, he had 51 saves a few years ago. I mean, he's been through these wars, and nothing's going to faze him," Snitker said, per O'Brien. "He's been a reliable pitcher for a long, long time."

So Atlanta should be covered in the ninth inning, at least until—or if—Greene can return to the All-Star form he showed in Detroit. If he doesn't, the Braves will be left with a serious case of buyer's remorse. 

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