The Braves are in agreement with Leury García on a minor league deal, as first reflected on the MLB.com transaction log. Robert Murray of FanSided tweets the utility player will get a look in big league Spring Training.
García returns to the affiliated ranks after sitting out the 2023 campaign. He was released by the White Sox at the end of Spring Training and spent the rest of the year in free agency. That ended a decade-long run in Chicago. García has never been much of an offensive contributor but endeared himself to multiple Sox coaching staffs with his defensive versatility.
He leveraged that into a three-year, $16.5MM contract when he hit free agency during the 2021-22 offseason. That always seemed a high price for a light-hitting utility player. It didn’t work out at all as the Sox had envisioned. García hit .210/.233/.267 in 97 games during the first season. He was cut loose before the start of year two.
García will make $5.5MM next year, his age-33 campaign. The White Sox are on the hook for that money. If García cracks the Braves roster at any point, Atlanta would only be responsible for the $740K league minimum for whatever time he spends in the majors. That makes this a no-risk flier to add multi-positional depth in exhibition play.
A switch-hitter, García owns a .253/.293/.350 batting line in over 2400 major league plate appearances. He has played everywhere aside from catcher and first base, seeing the plurality of his time in center field. García also has plenty of experience in the corner outfield and at both middle infield positions. Public defensive metrics have graded him around average at every spot.