Kansas City Royals & Atlanta Braves Agree To Trade

A sneaky pickup for the Atlanta Braves.

The Atlanta Braves have acquired left-handed pitcher Richard Lovelady from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for cash considerations.

Lovelady, who did not make the Royals' Opening Day roster, will provide the Braves with additional left-handed relief options at their Triple-A affiliate, Gwinnett.

Lovelady, 27, underwent Tommy John surgery and did not play last season.

However, he had an impressive performance in the recently-concluded spring training, which likely contributed to the Braves' decision to acquire him.

Before his surgery, Lovelady played 20.2 innings for the Royals, delivering an ERA of 3.48, a 27.4% strikeout rate, 7.1% walk rate, and a strong 56.6% ground-ball rate.

The southpaw has great control and command while throwing three pitches, a slider, sinker, and a four-seam fastball. 

Lovelady also throws all three pitches slightly harder than average, with the slider at 87 mph, and the two fastballs at 93 mph. Also, noteworthy, is he gets 97th percentile in extension, which is impressive, as it will also help improve his velocity.

Overall, this could turn out to be a very nice pickup for the Braves, as Lovelady contains all the tools to be a capable pitcher at the major-league level.

The trade also clears a spot in the Royals' 40-man roster, giving them more flexibility. Photo Credit: Joe Puetz-USA TODAY Sports