August 16, 2022

519 Magazine

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Atlanta trades Drew Waters, Andrew Hoffman and CJ Alexander to the Royals for the 35th pick in the draft

The Atlanta Braves acquired center field prospect Drew Waters, right-hander Andrew Hoffman and Double-A third baseman CJ Alexander with the 35th pick in Sunday’s major league draft from the Kansas City Royals.

A tradeable draft pick is worth $2,202,100 because it is a competitively balanced pick awarded to low-income, small-market teams. The Braves’ bonus pool will increase by more than $10.2 million, moving from 19th to ninth with the most money.

Waters, 23, was a consensus top-100 prospect at one point, but has stalled in Triple-A the past two seasons. A switch hitter’s glove capable of keeping him in center field for long periods of time, Waters was key to the deal for Kansas City, Bobby Witt Jr., M.J. Joined by Melendez and Vinny Pasquantino. Waters was added to Kansas City’s 40-man roster and optioned to Triple-A Omaha.

Waters, the 41st pick in the 2017 draft, is hitting .246/.305/.393 in 49 games at Triple-A this season. The emergence of Michael Harris II, the Braves’ rookie center fielder, made Waters expendable.

Atlanta selected Hoffman in the 12th round of the 2021 draft and has seen him dominate in High-A this season. The 22-year-old is 7-2 with a 2.36 ERA and 90 strikeouts in 80 innings. Upon joining the Royals, Hoffman will head to Double-A Northwest Arkansas, where he will be Alexander’s teammate.

Alexander, who turns 26 on Sunday, is a big, powerful left-hander with 15 home runs in 289 plate appearances at Double-A. He is hitting .258/.294/.465 and has also played first base.

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