Relief pitcher Pierce Johnson will join the Atlanta Braves bullpen, which owns the best ERA in the National League. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo
July 24 (UPI) -- The Atlanta Braves added depth to their strong bullpen Monday, trading for relief pitchers Pierce Johnson and Taylor Hearn, the team announced.
The Braves traded minor-league pitchers Tanner Gordon and Victor Vodnik to the Colorado Rockies in exchange for Johnson. They designated pitcher Lucas Luetge for assignment to make room for Johnson on their 40-man roster.
The Braves sent cash considerations to the Texas Rangers in exchange for Hearn. They designated pitcher Dereck Rodriguez -- the son of Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez -- for assignment to make room for Hearn.
Hearn, 28, posted a 10.29 ERA in four games this season for the Rangers. He went 6-8 with a 5.13 ERA in 31 appearances last season for the Rangers. The left-handed pitcher owns a 12-15 record with a 5.11 ERA and one save in 92 career appearances.
Johnson, 32, was 1-5 with a 6.00 ERA and 13 saves in 43 appearances this season for the Rockies. He went 1-2 with a 5.02 ERA in 15 appearances in 2022 for the San Diego Padres. The right-handed pitcher owns an 11-14 record with a 4.48 ERA and 13 saves in 183 career appearances.
Vodnik, 23, was the No. 10 prospect in the Braves system, according to MLB Pipeline. The right-handed pitcher went 3-1 with a 3.10 ERA and four saves in 30 appearances this season for the Class-AA Mississippi Braves.
Gordon, 25, was the No. 26 prospect in the Braves system. He went 4-5 with a 4.61 ERA in 11 starts this season for the Mississippi Braves. He also went 1-4 with an 8.28 ERA in six appearances for the Class-AAA Gwinnett Stripers.
Braves relief pitchers own a National League-best 3.50 ERA this season.
The Braves (64-34) also own MLB's best record and hold an 11.5-game lead on the second-place Philadelphia Phillies (53-46) and Miami Marlins (54-47) in the National League East.