Braves avoid arbitration with INF Johan Camargo

Credit: Curtis Compton /

Credit: Curtis Compton /

The Braves and infielder Johan Camargo agreed to a one-year, $1.36 million deal Wednesday to avoid arbitration. The deadline for teams to tender players is 8 p.m. Wednesday.

MLB Trade Rumors projected Camargo, who turns 27 this week, could’ve received somewhere in the range of $1.9 million to $2.3 million in arbitration. He was a potential non-tender candidate — many eligible players in the current MLB landscape are National League Championship Series but Wednesday’s agreement keeps Camargo with the only franchise he’s known.

Camargo broke on to the scene in 2017, going from a relatively unknown prospect to the Braves’ most pleasant surprise. He started 105 games at third base the next season for the upstart division-winning Braves. He was shifted into a utility role when the Braves signed Josh Donaldson before the 2019 season. Camargo struggled adapting to the role and eventually wound up in Triple-A. He returned to the majors late in the season, but a foul ball off the shin ended his season.

Entering the 2020 season, Camargo was competing with Austin Riley for the starting third-base job in March. He was enjoying a strong exhibition season before the coronavirus outbreak put sports on a multi-month hold. In the 60-game season, Riley took over as the Braves’ regular third baseman. Camargo ultimately appeared in only 35 of the team’s games, spending time at the alternate training site in Gwinnett. He hit .200/.244/.367 in 120 at-bats.

The Braves will continue pursuing bench help. They’ll hope Camargo can show more offense in 2021, but his defense and versatility provide value on the roster.