DENVER -- With Ryan Flaherty proving to be a more-than-serviceable fill-in at third base, the Braves might keep Johan Camargo on the disabled list through at least the start of next weekend's series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field."We're just going to play it by ear and see how we're
DENVER -- With Ryan Flaherty proving to be a more-than-serviceable fill-in at third base, the Braves might keep Johan Camargo on the disabled list through at least the start of next weekend's series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.
"We're just going to play it by ear and see how we're doing at that point," manager Brian Snitker said. "I don't see him coming up any earlier than Chicago. I don't even know if it will be Chicago."
Much of the focus leading up to the Cubs series will be whether the Braves will promote Ronald Acuna Jr., ranked as their top prospect by MLB Pipeline, on Saturday, April 14, which is the earliest date the outfielder could be added to the roster and secure an extra year of contract control.
Because Triple-A Gwinnett was rained out on Saturday, there is a chance Acuna would play just six games before being added to the Major League club's roster. The 20-year-old phenom went 0-for-4 as Gwinnett opened its season on Friday. It was the first true game he played since being part of the Braves Futures Stars team that played at SunTrust Park on March 27.
As Preston Tucker has been one of the Braves' top offensive threats thus far, he has done more than just keep the left-field position warm for Acuna. But his early combination and the limited game action over the past 10-plus days will not necessarily factor heavily if the Braves believe Acuna is ready to make his Major League debut next weekend.
While Acuna stands as one of the best prospects baseball has seen over the past couple decades, Camargo was regarded as a potential utility player until he hit .299 and produced a .783 OPS while tallying the first 256 plate appearances of his career last year.
Because the Minor League season did not begin until this week, Camargo has played sparingly since March 13, when he began battling discomfort near his right oblique muscle. The 24-year-old infielder went 1-for-8 with three strikeouts while playing two games for Class A Advanced Florida. He will now spend at least a few days playing for Gwinnett.
Once Camargo is deemed ready, he may take the third-base job from Flaherty, who entered Saturday's game against the Rockies hitting .400 with a 1.076 OPS. But for now, the Braves don't necessarily have a reason to rush the process.
"It's just getting the timing and getting some games back," Snitker said. "He feels good. His health is not an issue. It's just a matter of wanting him to see some pitches."
Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.