After the Washington Nationals acquired Cleveland Indians infielder Asdrubal Cabrera earlier in the day, the Atlanta Braves likely felt the pressure to add a piece or two to stay in step with their NL East rivals.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (per information obtained from several other reports), the Braves have acquired reliever James Russell and second baseman Emilio Bonifacio from the Chicago Cubs:
Confirming: As others have reported, #Cubs trade Russell and Bonifacio to #Braves.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) July 31, 2014
In exchange, Andrew Baggarly of Comcast SportsNet San Francisco indicates that the Cubs will receive 2013 2nd round pick Victor Caratini:
Cubs got Braves C prospect Victor Caratini, a plus hitter. Hunch here: Giants would've had to give up Susac to get Bonifacio, Russell.
— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) July 31, 2014
The Braves had been scouting for both left-handed bullpen help and an infield upgrade all month long. In Russell and Bonifacio, they find two proven talents to fill those needs as they push on towards the final two months of the regular season.
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