They go back to Colorado to grab another reliever after grabbing Pierce Johnson a week ago. Looking at Hand's numbers, he has thrown 35.2 innings with a 4.54 ERA, 4.56 xERA, 4.03 FIP, 4.07 xFIP, and 3.82 SIERA. This comes with a 26.1% strikeout rate and a 10.2% walk rate. It is interesting to see the strikeout rate back up after being down at 19.2% in 2022. An encouraging trend.
As always with pitchers that play in Colorado, it is important to look at the home and road splits.
Home: 18.1 IP, 4.91 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 3.72 xFIP, 26.9% strikeout rate, 7.7% rate. Against: .265/.321/.500
Road: 17.1 IP, 4.15 ERA, 4.54 FIP, 4.44 xFIP, 25.3% strikeout rate, 12.7% walk rate. Against: .266/.377/.422
Interestingly enough, he has been better at Coors Field than he has on the road. However, most of that can be attributed to walking more on the road and getting himself in trouble. He still has a .235 ISO at home compared to a .156 on the road. So cut down on the walks and you solve the issue there.
The biggest impact is Hand's abilities against lefties.
Against Lefties: 59 Batters faced- .143/.276/.204, 33.9% K rate, 13.6% walk rate. 0.60 ERA, 2.41 FIP, 3.27 xFIP
Against Righties: 98 Batters faced- .337/.392/.614, 21.4% K rate, 8.2% walk rate. 7.57 ERA, 5.21 FIP, 4.65 xFIP
He will have one job and that will be to get left-handers out in big spots. This allows them to keep AJ Minter in his role of 7th or 8th-inning reliever and not always have to plan to use him just against lefties. Hand can serve the specialty role well for Atlanta.
As for the cost, the Braves gave up Alec Barger. A 17th-round selection in 2019. A reliever in Double-A who in 38.1 innings pitched with a 3.29 ERA, 3.49 FIP, and 4.09 xFIP. A minimal cost for Brad Hand.
A fun fact, this now means that Hand will have suited up for every team in the NL East. Our friend here Mitchell Barbee says that he thinks it might be the first player to ever do so. If you play immaculate grid, you may want to file that away for later.
This could be the first of a few moves for the Braves on deadline day.