680 THE FAN, ATLANTA – Since Summer Camp resumed three weeks ago, one of the biggest questions surrounded what the team may or may not do with the designated hitter in 2020. Marcell Ozuna seemed like the most logical candidate. Nick Markakis had also been talked about as an option, prior to opting out of the season due to concerns about COVID-19 as well as playing in empty ballparks. Adam Duvall and Austin Riley were also candidates, until one familiar face returned to the Braves clubhouse yesterday.
Matt Adams, aka Big City, who was released by the Mets earlier in the week has signed a minor league deal to return to Atlanta. He made his presence known with a bang on Tuesday night, delivering a walk off solo shot to the Chop House as the Braves came back with nine runs in the final two innings to defeat the Marlins 10-9. “I think everybody, when he walked in the door, was very happy” Brian Snitker said after the game. “He did such a good job for us that year when Freddie went down. We have nothing but good memories of him. I hated seeing him on the other side when he left here” Snit added after Adams’ heroics. The 31 year old won a World Series right with the Nationals last season, appearing in 111 games, with 20 homers and 56 runs driven in.
You’ll recall, Adams was such a big piece of the Braves offense three years ago, that Freddie Freeman moved over to play some third base in an effort to keep an extra power lefty bat in the order. While Freddie’s stint at the hot corner was short lived, it showed the type of impact a guy like Adams can have on an order. And you’ll likely see a lot more of that moving forward as the team will utilize Adams as a DH for 2020 and keep Ozuna as the left fielder. With his ability to also play first base, Adams could see a few innings here and there in the field if the team wanted to give Freddie a bit of a breather and use him as the designated hitter here and there, but it does appear as though, at least to start the season, Big City will be counted on to be a big bat at the DH spot in the Atlanta order.
Kevin McAlpin has covered the Braves since 2012 for @680TheFan and the @BravesRadioNet.