The Atlanta Braves have a new catcher.
The Braves traded for Athletics’ backstop Sean Murphy on Monday, The Post’s Joel Sherman confirmed.
The deal is part of a three-team trade involving the Braves, Athletics and Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers are getting Braves catcher William Contreras, and righties Justin Yeager and Joel Payamps in the deal, while Oakland is getting catcher Manny Pina and super-utilityman Esteury Ruiz from the Brewers, as well as pitchers Kyle Muller, Freddy Tarnok and Royber Salinas from the Braves. It is unclear whether there are more players involved in the deal.
Murphy, 28, had a .250 batting average in 2022 with 18 home runs, 37 doubles and 66 RBIs. He slugged .426 and had a .759 OPS. Murphy, who is arbitration eligible in 2023 and becomes a free agent in 2025, could take over as the Braves’ primary catcher, while Travis d’Arnaud, who makes $8 million next season and has a club option for 2024, could become the DH if he’s not traded. D’Arnaud, who turns 34 in February, was an All-Star in 2022 while hitting .268 with 18 home runs and 60 RBIs.
Murphy joins a Braves team in essentially a three-way race for the NL East title. Both the Mets and Phillies have spent this offseason improving their team, the Phillies signing shortstop Trea Turner to an 11-year $300 million contract and the Mets have added multiple big-ticket free agents after finishing second in the division last season.
After losing Jacob deGrom to the Texas Rangers the Mets signed Justin Verlander to a two-year $86.6 million contract, José Quintana to a two-year $26 million contract, David Robertson to a one-year $10 million contract and re-signed Brandon Nimmo to an eight-year $162 million contract. They also brought in Japanese pitcher Kodai Senga on a five-year $75 million contract.
The addition of Murphy strengthens the lineup of the Braves, who likely saw the need for not only a catcher to improve their team, but also just another solid hitter after the Mets bolstered their rotation and bullpen. Murphy also won a Gold Glove in 2021.