ATLANTA -- Braves outfielder Jorge Soler was removed from the team’s National League Division Series roster prior to Game 4 on Tuesday after testing positive for COVID-19.
MLB approved a roster substitution, so Cristian Pache replaced Soler on Atlanta’s NLDS roster. Pache may remain on the roster until Soler meets the requirements to be reinstated from the COVID-19 related injured list.
The Braves eliminated the Brewers from the postseason with a 5-4 win in Game 4. They now have to prepare for Soler to be unavailable for a least a portion of the NL Championship Series, which begins Saturday against the Dodgers.
“We kind of found out that he had to get more tests around [batting practice],” Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman said. “When we came back in [from batting practice], the next thing you know he's gone.”
Atlanta will be attempting to fill a big void in its lineup. Soler has played an adequate right field and he hit 14 homers with an .882 OPS in the 55 games he played after being acquired from the Royals on July 30. He served as the Braves' leadoff hitter over the final two weeks of the regular season.
With Soler unavailable for Game 4, Atlanta moved shortstop Dansby Swanson to the leadoff spot. Joc Pederson moved from left field to right field and Adam Duvall transitioned from center field to left. Guillermo Heredia was inserted into the lineup to play center. Pache entered as part of a double switch in the ninth inning to play center, but he didn't make a plate appearance.