"Just when he was about to fill in for Acuña" - Fans perplexed after Braves DFA Joey Wendle mere two days after signing him

Fans perplexed after Braves DFA Joey Wendle mere two days after signing him; GETTY
Fans perplexed after Braves DFA Joey Wendle mere two days after signing him; GETTY

The Atlanta Braves added Joey Wendle on Friday to bring some depth to their infield department. However, the untimely departure of Ronald Acuna Jr. forced some changes in the plan.

Acuna Jr. will miss the rest of the 2024 season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in Sunday’s 8-1 victory game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park.

The Braves recalled outfielder J.P. Martinez to help the team’s outfield while reinstating catcher Sean Murphy from Illinois. Meanwhile, Joey Wendle was designated for assignment to clear roster space.

Fans took a jibe at the brand-new Brave's quick release without playing a single game.

“Just when he was about to fill in for Acuña and have an MVP season,” a fan commented.
“We will always remember his tenure in a Braves uniform,” a fan posted.
“This was a chess move, they got into the Mets heads for a couple days and then released him,” a fan tweeted.

Other fans got in their jabs with a particular focus on clothing:

“Wendle was there longer than the jerseys take to fall apart,” a fan replied.
“Never unpacked his bag,” a fan commented.
“Did they even give him a jersey?” a fan tweeted.

Joey Wendle scored only one RBI in 18 games this season. He slashed .222/.243/.250 with a .493 OPS for the Mets. The former All-Star came to Atlanta in the hope of rebounding, but that didn’t happen. And he’s now facing another potential release.

Joey Wendle was considered expendable given the team's need for outfielders

The Braves' need for outfield depth trumped keeping Wendle on the roster. The combination of Ozzie Albies, Austin Riley, Orlando Arica, and Zack Short will handle the infield duties, leaving Wendle on the outside looking in. The team has instead opted to bolster their outfield depth as opposed to carrying another infielder in the form of Wendle.

Filling the void left by Ronald Acuna Jr. will be tough, though. Instead of keeping Wendle on the roster, the front office called up J.P. Martinez, who will be sharing the outfield with Michael Harris II, Jarred Kelenic, and Adam Duvall. The Braves' outfield options are limited, which could lead to the team making another move in the near future.

Acuna Jr. was part of the Braves' successful 30-20 season run this season. However, the impact of his absence for the remainder of the season will be keenly felt.

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