What to Expect from Braves Shortstop Braden Shewmake


A new man at short for the Braves.

Image via Texas A&M Athletics

The Atlanta Braves have dealt with a revolving door over the past six weeks of the 2023 season, thanks to the departure of Dansby Swanson and a changing cast of replacements. Now, former first-round pick Braden Shewmake will get his chance at the position for the Braves. Here’s a closer look at the new Braves infielder.

Related: What to Expect from Cubs First Baseman Matt Mervis

A Look at Shewmake

The road to the Major Leagues was a long one for Braves shortstop Braden Shewmake, who became a first round pick in 2019 after a strong career at Texas A&M. Shewmake was a career .323 hitter in college, one who possessed average pop, didn’t strike out a lot, and demonstrated good bat-to-ball skills. More importantly, Shewmake showcased strong defensive abilities that led many to believe that he could be an above-average defender in the Majors.

Shewmake hit well in Rome (A) in his first pro season in 2019, but stalled a bit after a .228 season in 2021 with Mississippi (AA). The 25-year-old didn’t play the full season in 2022, but did improve his contact numbers and recorded 23 extra base hits across 75 games for Gwinnett (AAA).

The former Texas A&M star posted a strong spring and that run, coupled with a hole at short left behind by Dansby Swanson seemingly opened the door for Shewmake to crack the Opening Day roster. That didn’t happen, as the Braves sent both him and Vaughn Grissom down to the Minors in favor of Orlando Arcia.

Arcia performed quite well early on in 2023, before he hit the IL. Grissom got the nod to replace Arcia, but he’s only hit .258 with one extra base hit over 18 games.

The promotion of Shewmake wasn’t the only notable move the Braves made on May 5. Atlanta reinstated Raisel Iglesias from the IL, who should finally take the reins as the Braves closer moving forward.

A Look at the Braves

Shewmake hit .243/.282/.486 with Gwinnett (AAA) across 24 games this season, and those numbers are probably what Braves fans should expect from the 25-year-old in the Majors. The Braves infielder won’t strike out a lot, nor will he make hard contact on a consistent basis. But, he does have average pop and a good approach that should allow him to poke balls through holes.

What makes Shewmake appealing is his glove. Shewamke have the smarts and should have the range to be a shortstop at the MLB level. Given what the Braves have received from the likes of Ronald Acuna Jr., Sean Murphy, and Matt Olson so far in 2023, a defensive-minded infielder who can hold down short should be a major boost for Atlanta’s ability to keep runs off the board.

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