The Atlanta Braves have plenty of options for their bench in 2019. Austin Riley is one interesting option who could play in a utility role for Atlanta. Should Riley start the season on the roster?
Austin Riley is one of the Atlanta Braves best prospects and looks to be ready to transition to the next level. The problem for the Braves is the fact they have already 9 starters on their roster for 8 positions.
If Riley is going to make the roster it will have to be as a utility player or a pinch hitter. While the thought of Riley sitting on the bench isn’t extremely appealing it might be the Braves best option.
Riley is putting in outfield work giving him the ability to start at other positions. Though his defense is already questionable. While he is serviceable at third most of his value is in his bat and not defensively.
Riley projects to be a high average hitter with 25+ home run power. Getting his bat in the lineup consistently will be tough. But if he performs well in Spring Training adding him to the bench would be a good decision for Atlanta.
Routinely giving their veterans off days will be important this season as we were witness to the team running out of gas late last year.
Riley would provide the Braves with an option at third base and both corner outfield spots. Even if he were to solely play left field the Brave other outfield options are all capable of shifting over to right.
Austin Riley is a top prospect for a good reason, a player who has plenty of talent and could be the big addition to the lineup the Braves have lacked.
Austin Riley should be on the Braves Opening Day roster. Giving the team yet another young player who is capable of a breakout season.