Braves trade for Teixeira
The Braves have found nothing amiss with Mark Teixeira's medical records and OK'd the blockbuster of the season, sources told SI.com, setting the stage for an announcement of the trade either Monday night or Tuesday.
The trade, which had been contingent on medical records, will send Teixeira and reliever Ron Mahay to Atlanta for top catching prospect Jarrod Saltalamacchia, heralded shortstop prospect Elvis Andrus and two other prospects.
Teixeira's streak of 507 consecutive games played was snapped on June 9 due to a quad injury; he did not return until July 13.
The sides reached a compromise agreement after Texas sought a substitute for pitching prospect Matt Harrison due to injury concerns. According to the Fort Wort Star-Telegram, the Braves have agreed to send pitching prospect Neftali Feliz and a player to be named later instead of Harrison.
The Braves are not expected to pursue a long-term contract with Teixeira, who is due to become a free agent after the 2008 season and is making $9 million this year.
Saltalamacchia, who like Teixeira is a switch-hitter with power, has spent time at first base this season as the Braves tried to find a way to utilize his bat. Saltalamacchia's path at catcher was blocked by McCann, who this year signed a six-year, $26.8 million deal.
Mahay, 36, is 2-0 with a 2.77 ERA and one save in 28 games this season.
Teixeira, hitting .297 with 13 homers and 49 RBIs, gives the Braves a home-run threat at first base they lacked after trading Adam LaRoche to Pittsburgh in the offseason. Teixeira, a two-time Gold Glove winner, also should be a defensive upgrade.
Teixeira missed 27 games this season with a left quadriceps injury.
The Braves opened the season with Craig Wilson and Scott Thorman splitting time at first base. Wilson was released after hitting only .172. Thorman is hitting .220 with 10 homers and 34 RBIs.
Saltalamacchia has struggled defensively at times when tried at first base. The Braves signed 48-year-old Julio Franco on July 18 after Franco was released by the Mets.
Teixeira has hit 153 homers in five seasons. He set career highs with 43 homers and 144 RBIs in 2005.
Saltalamacchia, 22, is hitting .284 with four homers and 12 RBIs in 141 at-bats.
Andrus, 19, is best known for his strong defense at shortstop, but he plays a position of great depth in the Braves' organization. Rookie Yunel Escobar is hitting .317 in 43 games this season while playing shortstop, third base and second base. Starter Edgar Renteria, hitting .333, is signed through the 2008 season.