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Garcia released by Braves, to play in Korea

MLB.com @mlbbowman

ATLANTA -- Having seen his reign as the Braves' starting third baseman end this past summer, Adonis Garcia will now go overseas to extend his baseball career.

The Braves announced that Garcia was released Wednesday to allow him to pursue his desire to play in South Korea. He has reportedly reached an agreement with the LG Twins, a Seoul-based member of the KBO League.

ATLANTA -- Having seen his reign as the Braves' starting third baseman end this past summer, Adonis Garcia will now go overseas to extend his baseball career.

The Braves announced that Garcia was released Wednesday to allow him to pursue his desire to play in South Korea. He has reportedly reached an agreement with the LG Twins, a Seoul-based member of the KBO League.

Garcia served as Atlanta's starting third baseman the past two seasons, but he did not factor into the team's plans for the upcoming season. The 32-year-old Cuban's role diminished after he was sidelined over the final two weeks of May with a hamstring injury and then missed most of the next three months while recovering from finger surgery to repair a torn ligament suffered on June 6.

As the Braves have been planning for the upcoming season, Johan Camargo has been considered the favorite to open 2018 at third base. Rio Ruiz has been considered the second most likely internal option. But president of baseball operations Alex Anthopoulos has remained open to the possibility of acquiring a short-term veteran via trade or free agency.

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While Camargo showed he was capable of handling the position by making 30 starts (nine in September) at third base last year, he doesn't necessarily fit the role on a long-term basis. Rising prospect Austin Riley could be deemed Major League ready at some point during the 2019 season, and the Braves may be serious bidders for Manny Machado or Josh Donaldson when they enter the free-agent market next offseason.

Garcia hit .267, belted 29 home runs and constructed a .714 OPS as he played in 244 games over the past three seasons for Atlanta. The Braves signed him after he was released by the Yankees at the conclusion of Spring Training in 2015.

After spending most of his first four months in Atlanta's system with Triple-A Gwinnett, Garcia took advantage of the unexpected opportunity he gained when he was called to the Majors after Kelly Johnson and Juan Uribe were traded to the Mets on July 24, 2015.

Garcia tallied 10 homers while totaling less than 200 at-bats in 2015 and added 14 homers while tallying 532 at-bats the following season. He committed 17 errors through is first 139 career chances at third base. But after being demoted to Gwinnett during the early portion of the 2016 season with the assumption he'd return as a left fielder, Garcia returned and proceeded to make just 16 more errors over the 345 chances that followed at the hot corner.

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.

Atlanta Braves, Adonis Garcia