Ervin joins his fourth organization in less than six months, after being designated for assignment by the Reds in August and then picked up on successive waiver claims by the Mariners and Cubs. Ervin had previously spent his entire career with Cincinnati after the Reds selected him with the 27th overall pick of the 2013 draft.
The 28-year-old hit .262/.326/.438 over 571 plate appearances from 2017-19, with most of the damage coming against left-handed pitching. Ervin’s production badly fell off last season, as hit hit only .149/.292/.189 over 89 PA with the Reds and Mariners. This led Seattle to expose him to the DFA wire to create roster space for Keynan Middleton, and after Chicago made a claim, the Cubs DFA’ed Ervin themselves when Jake Marisnick was signed.
Ronald Acuna Jr. and Marcell Ozuna will play every day in the Atlanta outfield, with Acuna’s ability to play either center or right field opening the door for a number of possibilities for the third slot. Highly-touted youngster Cristian Pache might have the first crack at the center field job, while Ervin joins Ender Inciarte as a backup option who can play all three outfield positions. Abraham Almonte and utilityman Johan Camargo are also in the mix for outfield at-bats. Ervin is out of minor league options, so he may be facing another trip to DFA waivers if he doesn’t land a job on the Braves’ active roster.