Angels acquire Gold Glove shortstop Andrelton Simmons from Braves, deal away Erick Aybar

November 12, 2015

The Angels today acquired shortstop Andrelton Simmons and catcher Jose Briceno from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for infielder Erick Aybar, and pitchers Sean Newcomb and Chris Ellis. Thursday’s announcements were made by Angels General Manager Billy Eppler.

Simmons, 26, comes to the Angels as one of the top defensive players in all of baseball and is signed through the 2020 campaign.  The two-time Rawlings Gold Glove® winner (Platinum Glove in 2013) has led the National League in defensive WAR (dWAR) each of his three full seasons in the Major Leagues (2013-15).  In 2013, his 5.4 dWAR equaled the best single-season mark at any position in MLB history (Terry Turner, INF, 1906).  Simmons has also been named Wilson’s Defensive Player of the Year each of the last three campaigns, earning the top individual honor in 2015.

"We are extremely excited to acquire an impact shortstop and one that fits our Championship Standards,” said Eppler.  “Andrelton provides us up the middle foundation at a premium position for years to come. To know we have a player with Andrelton’s talents, drive and competitiveness at such a young age signed through 2020 is a vital step in adding to our core group."

“I have had the opportunity of watching Erick Aybar from afar, and have great respect for his contributions to the Angels. He can do great things on both sides of the baseball and contributed to a winning atmosphere with the Angels for many years.  This is one of those transactions where each organization will benefit in both the short and long term,” added Eppler.

Simmons is a career .256 (472/1847) hitter across 1,999 plate appearances with 197 runs scored, 76 doubles, 14 triples, 31 home runs and 168 RBI.  His finest offensive season came in 2013 with career-bests in runs (76), doubles (27, triples (6), home runs (17) and RBI (59).

A native of Mundo-Novo, Curacao, Simmons was originally selected by Atlanta in the second round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.  He attended Western Oklahoma State Junior College and was signed by Gerald Turner.

Briceno, 23, entered the 2015 season ranked by Baseball America as Atlanta’s 20th-best prospect and spent the year with Advanced-A Carolina, where he posted a Carolina League leading 36% (35/97) caught stealing rate.

By Staff of and news services

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