The Atlanta Braves have decided to pick up their 2012 club option for Eric Hinske, according to a tweet from their official account. The club will also reportedly decline Nate McLouth’s option.
Hinske will now earn $1.5 million for 2012 after making $1.35 million in 2011. The Braves had the choice to buyout his contract for $100,000.
The 34-year-old utility man hit .233/.311/.403 with 10 home runs and 28 RBI in 264 plate appearances for the Braves this year. While his bat is not as potent as it once was earlier in his career, Hinske has provided defensive versatility by playing five different positions for Atlanta over the past two seasons.
The Braves bought out McLouth’s contract for $1.25 million. Had they exercised his club option, they would have been forced to pay the veteran outfielder $10.65 million. The 30-year-old hit .228/.344/.333 in 81 games for the Braves this season. The former All-Star managed to hit just .190/.298/.322 in 2010 for Atlanta. McLouth’s best season came in 2008 when he hit .276/.356/.497 with 26 home runs a league leading 46 doubles.