Atlanta Braves 2022 Season Review: Jesse Chavez
There are few players with a more interesting career than Jesse Chavez. Chavez, a 42nd round pick in the 2002 draft, boasts the title as most traded player in MLB history, having been dealt 10 different times during his 15 year career. Though his career is quite interesting, his time with Atlanta, particularly his three stints with the Atlanta Braves over the past two years (yes, you read that right), might be even more interesting.
Chavez signed with the Braves just a couple of weeks into the 2021 season and played out the year in Atlanta. After winning a ring with the Braves, Chavez walked away during free agency and ended up with the Cubs at the start of 2022. Chavez pitched in only four games for the Cubs before he was sent back to Atlanta in exchange for Sean Newcomb. Chavez remained with the Braves for quite a while before being shipped off once again, this time as a victim of the trade deadline. Jesse Chavez, along with Tucker Davidson, were sent to the Angels in exchange for Raisel Iglesias. As no one could have expected, Jesse Chavez was released by the Angels after just under a month and claimed off waivers by the Braves the next day.
How did the 2022 season go for Jesse Chavez?
When looking at Jesse Chavez’s total season output, you will be a bit surprised to see a 39 year old reliever putting up solid numbers this late into his career. The numbers look even better when you look at his time with the Braves in 2022. Chavez obviously did not perform the best for the Cubs and Angels, hence the reason he was dealt and released, but it seems Chavez will pitch well no matter what as long as he is wearing a Braves jersey.
Jesse was not one of the first options out of the strong Braves bullpen, but he always gave you a good inning, or often more than one. If a starter came out of a game early for whatever reason, there was a strong likelihood that you would see Jesse Chavez come in and eat innings. He was also utilized in a few high pressure situations and performed great. Through 46 appearances with the Braves in 2022, Chavez posted a 2.72 ERA and 2.89 FIP through 53 innings. Jesse also totaled 10.4 strikeouts per nine, which is 2.2 batters over his career average. Chavez is known as a guy who will throw a lot of strikes and walk very few, and his 2.4 walked batters per nine is a clear indicator that that is still the case.
Will he return to the Atlanta Braves for the 2023 Season?
Jesse Chavez is nearing the end of his long career. If he were to pitch in 2023, he would turn 40 before the season is over. With that being said, I fully expect the Braves to re-sign Jesse Chavez. It’s a perfect fit for both parties and makes little sense for Jesse and the Braves to part ways. Jesse is beloved in both the clubhouse and the bullpen, and that’s something that is difficult to replace. It’s hard to predict how he will perform considering his age, but he has seemed to tap into the fountain of youth with Atlanta and it feels unwise to bet against that continuing in 2023. Chavez has had 4 different stints with the Atlanta Braves through his long career, yet has never been on the Braves roster from game 1 through game 162 ever. Hopefully next year can be his first.