Braves call up five, including Bethancourt
SEP 1, 1:27p ET | Cory McCartney
Rotowire: Feb 5 / 11:24a ET
News: Russell will work out of the bullpen during spring training, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Impact: The Braves were kicking around the idea of stretching Russell out as a starter earlier in the offseason, but with the additions of Mike Fotynewicz, Eric Stults and Manny Banuelos, they no longer lack options at the back of the rotation. Russell, who posted a 2.22 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in 24.1 innings after coming over to Atlanta at the deadline last season, will likely work as the top lefty out of the bullpen to begin 2015.
Rotowire: Jan 15 / 1:49p ET
News: Russell agreed to a one-year, $2.425 million contract to avoid arbitration, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports.
Impact: Russell will likely be the top lefty out of Atlanta's bullpen, which could lead to plentiful opportunities for holds. Just don't expect more than the occasional save, as the Braves have right-handers Jason Grilli and Jim Johnson behind Craig Kimbrel.
Rotowire: Dec 2 / 4:40p ET
News: The Braves might give Russell a shot to spend at least the early weeks of spring training stretching out as a starter, Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports.
Impact: Russell began his professional career as a starter in the Cubs' system, but has pitched almost exclusively as a reliever since 2009, making just six starts in his five seasons at the major league level. However, the Braves, lacking quality starting pitching depth, are at least toying with the idea of getting him stretched out, though nothing's definite and it seems likely he'll wind up back in the bullpen regardless.