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As a shock to some, veteran corner infielder Pablo Sandoval has made the 2021 Atlanta Braves’ Opening Day roster.
After playing a single regular-season game with the big league club a season ago, veteran switch-hitting corner infielder Pablo Sandoval will make the Atlanta Braves roster ahead of 2021 MLB Opening Day.
Sandoval is entering his age-34 season out of Venezuela. The two-time NL All-Star was a three-time World Series champion when he manned the hot corner for the San Francisco Giants in his mid-20s.
The 2012 World Series MVP is a career .279 hitter but has had his issues staying on the field. He has only played in 100 games since 2016. So how does he fit in with the Braves?
Pablo Sandoval will backup Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley in the infield
Hitting from both sides of the plate, as well as playing decent defense at either corner infield spot is what helped Sandoval make the 2021 Braves roster out of spring training.
Though he will start sparingly, as reigning NL MVP Freddie Freeman is an everyday player at first base and Atlanta really thinks Austin Riley can be the next Scott Role at third base, Sandoval will have other roles.
Because the designated hitter has not been universally adopted in the National League for this season, Sandoval may end up being used quite frequently as a pinch hitter.
Should Riley need a break at third base or Riley is filling in for Marcell Ozuna in left field, Sandoval should have no issues manning his typical position of third base. He gives the Braves some depth at the corners.
The “Kung Fu Panda” will fit right in with this World Series-contending Braves team for 2021.