The Braves stayed busy before Christmas, getting corner outfielder Preston Tucker from the Astros on Wednesday in a trade for a player to be named later or cash considerations.
Tucker, a left-handed hitter who had seven triples and 24 home runs last season in Triple-A, spent parts of two seasons in the majors with Houston in 2015-2016 and hit .219 with a .274 OBP, 27 doubles and 17 home runs in 467 plate appearances over 146 games in that span.
The Braves designated right-handed reliever Luke Jackson for assignment to clear a spot on their 40-man roster. If he’s not claimed on waivers, they could send him to Triple-A.
The roster had been filled after Saturday’s big trade that sent Matt Kemp to the Dodgers and brought four players from Los Angeles including Adrian Gonzalez, who was designated for assignment and became a free agent Monday, which had been a prerequisite for Gonzalez to waive his no-trade clause.
Turcker, a 27-year-old Tampa native, saw his only extensive major league time in 2015, when he hit .243 with 19 doubles and 13 home runs in 300 at-bats and had a .297 OBP and .734 OPS. He played in 98 games that season for Houston including 62 starts in left field, 12 in right field and two as designated hitter.
He has a .229 average, 16 homers and a .729 OPS in 350 major league at-bats against right-handers, compared to a .179 average with one homer and a .457 OPS in 84 at-bats against lefties.
Tucker spent all of 2017 at Triple-A Fresno, batting .250 with 51 extra-base hits, 98 RBIs, a .333 OBP and .798 OPS in 568 plate appearances, with 102 strikeouts and 65 walks. He has a .282 average and 100 homers and 398 RBIs in 535 minor league games over parts of six seasons.
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