Braves Expected To Show Interest In Gregg

The Braves are "among the many teams expected to show interest in Cubs closer Kevin Gregg," writes's Mark Bowman.  Bowman notes that the righty closed for current Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez when both were with the Marlins in 2007-08.  Gregg is just one of many relievers the Braves may be looking at as they pursue veteran help with Eric O'Flaherty and Jonny Venters out for the season.

Gregg, 35, has become an unlikely asset for the Cubs, returning to their closer role and posting a 1.42 ERA, 9.2 K/9, 2.5 BB/9, 0.71 HR/9, and 36.5% groundball rate in 25 1/3 innings.  He's proof of the volatility of relievers.  In March, ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon wrote that Gregg "quietly stewed" over the fact that he couldn't find a Major League deal in the offseason coming off a 2012 campaign in which he posted a 4.95 ERA and 1.5 K/BB ratio in 43 2/3 frames for the Orioles.  He signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers, who couldn't find a spot on their big league pitching staff due to their starter surplus and released him.  He then signed a minor league deal with the Cubs, who selected his contract in a mid-April bullpen shakeup.

It's a little early for a clear picture of Gregg's market, but the Braves, Reds, Red Sox, Tigers, and Padres are likely to be on the hunt for bullpen help.  The Cubs and Braves hooked up on a notable trade near the deadline last year, with Chicago shipping veterans Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson to Atlanta for prospects Arodys Vizcaino and Jaye Chapman.

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