The Atlanta Braves have been forced to scramble to put together their starting rotation in the weeks leading up to Opening Day. Season-ending injuries to not one but two starting pitchers (Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy) motivated the team to sign free agent Ervin Santana earlier this month.
That move did not end their search for help in the rotation, as the team reportedly signed veteran starter Aaron Harang on Monday night.
According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports:
Source: Harang signing with #Braves.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 24, 2014
This comes on the same day that Harang was granted his release by the Cleveland Indians. At 35 years old, Harang’s value is minimal at this point in his career. Furthermore, it is tough for him to find a good fit because of his extreme flyball tendencies (41.1% in his career and a staggering 44.3% in 2013). Last season he went 5-12 with a 5.76 ERA, spending most of his time with the Seattle Mariners.
That said, he finds himself in a pretty ideal situation with the Braves. If he does work his way into the rotation the expectations won’t be much higher than for him to be a guy who can eat up some innings, something Harang can probably still offer. As far as depth signings go, the Braves could do worse than a veteran with a decent track record such as Harang.