Jun 7, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Atlanta Braves second baseman Dan Uggla commits a throwing error in the second inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Could Toronto Blue Jays take a flyer on Dan Uggla?

The four-year marriage between the Atlanta Braves and second baseman Dan Uggla has been on a rocky decline seemingly since the day they acquired him from the Miami Marlins. That decline finally hit rock bottom on Friday.

According to reports from Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, and later confirmed by the Braves through their own Twitter release, Atlanta has formerly released Uggla.

The acquisition of Uggla prior to the 2011 season, in a deal that sent Omar Infante and reliever Mike Dunn to the Marlins, has seemingly been an expensive one for the Braves. It isn’t going to get any lighter now that they’ve released him either, as Atlanta still owes Uggla $5 million for the remainder of this season and another $13 million for the 2015 season according to Rosenthal.

So with Uggla now on the scrap heap, will Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos try to reclaim what is left of the former slugger?

With the Braves on the hook for the next two seasons, Uggla can ostensibly sign a deal with an team at the league minimum, potentially making him a low-cost risk to take. Given the Blue Jays desires to take risks and do so at low costs, Uggla may be a worthwhile chance.

However, there is also the question of whether or not he could help the team.

It’s been four years since Uggla put up a batting average worth writing home about, and despite his power potential, his last two seasons almost make J.P. Arencibia‘s 2013 season stomach-able. Just look at his decline and ask if he really represents an upgrade.

Year G PA R H 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2006 ★ 154 683 105 172 26 27 90 48 123 .282 .339 .480 .818
2007 159 728 113 155 49 31 88 68 167 .245 .326 .479 .805
2008 ★ 146 619 97 138 37 32 92 77 171 .260 .360 .514 .874
2009 158 668 84 137 27 31 90 92 150 .243 .354 .459 .813
2010 159 674 100 169 31 33 105 78 149 .287 .369 .508 .877
2011 161 672 88 140 22 36 82 62 156 .233 .311 .453 .764
2012 ★ 154 630 86 115 29 19 78 94 168 .220 .348 .384 .732
2013 136 537 60 80 10 22 55 77 171 .179 .309 .362 .671
2014 48 145 13 21 3 2 10 10 40 .162 .241 .231 .472
9 Yrs 1275 5356 746 1127 234 233 690 606 1295 .244 .337 .452 .789
162 Game Avg. 162 681 95 143 30 30 88 77 165 .244 .337 .452 .789
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/18/2014.

Those last two seasons, in which Uggla put together a combined -0.2 WAR and is contributing a wRC+ of 35 this season should be enough to scare anyone off, including the Blue Jays. If that isn’t enough, let’s consider his left/right splits from 2014 and for his career.

2014

Split G PA R H 2B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG
vs RHP 37 115 10 17 3 1 6 10 34 .168 .261 .228
vs LHP 18 30 3 4 0 1 4 0 6 .138 .167 .241
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/18/2014.

Career

I Split G PA R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
vs RHP 1202 4003 559 864 170 14 184 544 428 976 .248 .338 .464 .802
vs LHP 574 1353 187 263 64 2 49 146 178 319 .228 .335 .415 .751
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/18/2014.

That’s right, Dan Uggla hits 20 points and slugs nearly 50 points lower against opposite-hand pitching. Considering the Blue Jays struggles with southpaws, adding in another bat that can’t hit them and strikes out way too often just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

So, while I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Blue Jays consider Uggla as a revitalization project, I also cannot find a way to justify the addition either. He may offer a bit more pop, but the Munenori Kawasaki has been holding his own offensive of late and plays much better defense than Uggla as well.

Adding Dan Uggla would just be an ugly move.

Tags: Dan Uggla Toronto Blue Jays

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