Simmons Promoted to Atlanta, Pastornicky Demoted to Gwinnett
The future is now according to the Atlanta Braves most recent move. The Braves shortstop of the future Andrelton Simmons has been promoted to the Atlanta Braves from Double-A Mississippi as he’ll skip an appearance in Triple-A Gwinnett. With the promotion, the Braves rookie shortstop Tyler Pastornicky has been reassigned to Triple-A Gwinnett, where he played his 2011 season. Also, the G-Braves middle infielder Greg Paiml has been sent down to Double-A Mississippi to fill Simmons’ void at shortstop….The shortstop roulette shuffle continues within the Atlanta Braves organization.
Simmons is widely considered the best fielding shortstop in minor league baseball, and some scouts say he is already a better fielder than half of the shortstops at the Major League level. He reminds a lot of people of Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus.
Last season, Simmons won the Carolina League batting title in Single-A Lynchburg with a .311 batting average, forcing scouts to think of him as an all-around player. In 43 games with Mississippi this season, Simmons batted .292 with 28 runs scored, 50 hits, nine doubles, two triples, three home runs, 21 RBI, 10 stolen bases and an extraordinary 1:1 walk to strikeout ratio with 20 of each in Double-A.
Pastornicky, 22, made his Major League debut this season with the Braves as part of their Opening Day roster. The Bradenton, FL native hit .248 with six doubles, a triple, a home run, 12 RBIs and two stolen bases in 45 games with Atlanta.
Originally a fifth-round pick of the Toronto Blue Jays in 2008, Pastornicky was acquired via trade by Atlanta in July of 2010. He made his Triple-A debut with Gwinnett last season, hitting .365 with two doubles, a home run, nine RBIs and seven stolen bases in 27 games.
Paiml, 27, hit .212 with four doubles, seven RBIs and two stolen bases in 29 games for the G-Braves. The Tuscaloosa, AL native was acquired by the Braves from the Chicago White Sox in March and was in his first Triple-A season.
Photo courtesy of Chris Roughgarden
By: Tony Piraro