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Braves send lefty Alex Torres to minors

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – While the Braves releasing outfielder Nick Swisher on Monday wasn’t a surprise to those who cover the team, their other roster move of the day, reassigning left-handed reliever Alex Torres to minor league camp, was unexpected.

The Braves had already optioned, reassigned otherwise gotten rid of all others from their original pool of six left-handed relief options, none of whom had done much to impress in spring training.

Torres, a veteran non-roster invitee, was the last from that group, and he was dropped from the spring-training roster a day after Atlanta reacquired former Braves lefty Eric O’Flaherty from the Pittsburgh Pirates in a Sunday trade for cash.

Torres, 28, had a 4.50 ERA in seven Grapefruit League appearances, allowing six hits and five runs (four earned) with five walks to go with seven strikeouts in eight innings.

The Braves could add another lefty via trade or waiver claim before opening day, or bring back one of the lefties previously sent down to the minors. Manager Fredi Gonzalez mentioned Ian Krol and Hunter Cervenka as candidates from that group now in minor league camp.

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“But right now, we picked up O’Flaherty, he’s a pretty good piece,” Gonzalez said.

The Swisher and Torres moves left the Braves with 35 active players on the spring-training roster. They have to get down to 25 by Sunday, a day before their season opener against the Nationals.

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