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Braves reliever Varvaro DFA’d to open spot for infielder Callaspo

Reliever Anthony Varvaro was designated for assignment by the Braves on Monday when they needed to open a roster spot for infielder Alberto Callaspo, whose one-year, $3 million free-agent contract was finalized after he passed a physical.

Callaspo agreed to terms last week and is expected to play second base until prospect Jose Peraza is ready.

Given the generally high quality of work that Varvaro produced the past two seasons with the Braves, the DFA move led to some speculation that the right-hander would be traded soon, since it seemed highly unlikely he would pass through waivers without getting claimed by another team. After DFA’ing him, the Braves had 10 days to trade, release or place him on waivers.

Varvaro had a 2.63 ERA in 61 appearances in 2014, with 50 strikeouts and 13 walks in 54 2/3 innings, and has a 2.74 ERA and .238 opponents’ average in 123 appearances over the past two seasons. The right-hander was particularly effective against lefty batters in 2014, limiting them to a stingy .149 average (11-for-74) and .198 OBP.

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