Braves trade Tommy La Stella to Cubs for Arodys Vizcaino

Tommy La Stella is headed to the North Side of Chicago.
Tommy La Stella is headed to the North Side of Chicago. (USATSI)

The Chicago Cubs have announced that they've acquired second baseman Tommy La Stella from the Braves in exchange for reliever Arodys Vizcaino. Additionally, a few international bonus pool slots were swapped, with the Braves gaining $832,000 in pool money.

La Stella, 25, hit .251/.328/.317 with 16 doubles, a homer, 31 RBI and 22 runs in 360 plate appearances for the Braves last season. He hasn't played anywhere but second as a professional.

The Cubs seemed ready to move into 2015 with youngster Javier Baez as the everyday second baseman while Arismendy Alcantara and Luis Valbuena could also serve at the position -- though as things stand, each could be starting in a different position (Valbuena at 3B and Alcantara in CF). It's entirely possible this move means Baez could start in the minors, another move is coming or La Stella is simply going to be used as a backup. My hunch is the latter is the most likely scenario. La Stella is a career .322 hitter with a .407 on-base percentage in the minors, but he has little-to-no power.

Vizcaino, 24, appeared in five games for the Cubs last season, posting a 5.40 ERA and 1.60 WHIP. In 40 minor-league appearances (nine in High-A, 14 in Double-A and 17 in Triple-A), Vizcaino had a 3.51 ERA and 1.37 WHIP with 42 strikeouts in 41 innings. He's a power arm and could eventually serve as a closer, though in Atlanta he's obviously blocked from that. He's been slow to recover from Tommy John surgery, but was healthy for most of last season.

An interesting note here is that the Cubs got Vizcaino from the Braves in a deal that sent Reed Johnson and Paul Maholm to Atlanta in 2012.

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered every World Series since 2010. The former Indiana University baseball player now lives on the... Full Bio

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