The Atlanta Braves Should Consider Scott Barlow from the Kansas City Royals

As the Kansas City Royals continue to build for the future, bullpen arm Scott Barlow is a name they may consider moving.
Kansas City Royals v Cleveland Guardians
Kansas City Royals v Cleveland Guardians / Ron Schwane/GettyImages

The Atlanta Braves could find a backend bullpen arm in Scott Barlow from the Kansas City Royals. He might be fairly cheap as well.

Currently, Barlow has a 5.50 ERA over 37.2 innings, which is not ideal. However, he has a 3.81 xERA, 3.76 FIP, 4.06 xFIP, and 4.11 SIERA. Suggesting that he has gotten quite unlucky this year. His strikeout rate of 26.2% is nearly identical to the 26.6% rate he had last year. The biggest issue is his walk rate has jumped up from 7.6% to 12.8%.

Outside of his walk rate though, it appears he is just having a bit of touch luck. That could also be in part to having a very bad baseball team behind him this year.

In 2022, Barlow pitched 74.1 innings with a 2.18 ERA, 2.96 xERA, 3.62 FIP, 3.42 xFIP, and 3.10 SIERA. He also added 24 saves and 6 holds, showing that he can be used in big moments late in games.

As mentioned, it appears he has been more unfortunate than anything this year. The peripherals really love Barlow. He has an 85.3 mph EV (96th percentile), 27.9% hard hit rate (96th percentile), .347 xSLG (80th percentile), and 5.8% barrel (80th percentile).

Barlow throws a slider, curveball, 4-seam fastball, and Sinker.

Slider (43.6%)- 83.1 MPH .222 BA, .209 xBA, .317 SLG, .282 xSLG, .285 wOBA, .271 xwOBA, 81.5 EV, 33.1% whiff

Curveball (29.2%)- 78.6 MPH .192 BA, .214 xBA, .288 SLG, .280 xSLG, .253 wOBA, .263 xwOBA, 84.5 EV, 32.9% whiff

4-Seam fastball (23.1%)- 92.7 MPH .480 BA, .379 xBA, .720 SLG, .670 xSLG, .533 wOBA, .498 xwOBA, 89.5 EV, 17.5% whiff

Sinker (4.1%)- 92.3 MPH .200 BA, .175 xBA, .200 SLG, .243 xSLG, .177 wOBA, .179 xwOBA, 80.9 EV, 25.0% whiff

Really good breaking stuff! Fastball is getting hit hard, but maybe there is something that can be fixed there.

Another appealing factor with Barlow is the extra year of control. He is not a pure rental and would be apart of a team's bullpen for 2024 as well.

This is one of the more appealing names that I have wrote about. It would not cost much, and the Royals would be interested in any prospect, rather than a specific position, so the Braves might be able to make this work.