Cristian Pache grateful for Braves fan support after trade
“I was kind of in shock (when I got traded),” Pache said, through an interpreter, in a chat with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Tuesday. “How could I not be?” I felt sad but it was a good opportunity for me.
Pache remains friends with his former teammates. He is close to Braves receiver William Contreras, who is having an exceptional season. Pache spoke with outfielder Ronald Acuna on Sunday ahead of the series.
Alongside former Braves backstop Stephen Vogt, Pache received his World Series ring on the court ahead of Tuesday’s contest. He was warmly applauded by the crowd.
“I’m very happy,” Pache said. “I got a lot of support and love from the fans. I’m very excited to be back, to see my (former) teammates and to get my ring.
Braves fans continued to show the love for Pache on Twitter, where he became popular for his wholesome and politely worded posts. Pache admitted he didn’t expect them to continue to support him so adamantly, but he appreciates them.
“I was surprised to continue to receive so much love from fans,” he said. “It makes me very happy.” Regarding his presence on social networks, he added: “I feel like I am with them (the fans). I love communicating with them on social media. It makes me feel like we’re close.
On the pitch, Pache still hasn’t found a consistent offense. He reduced .167/.215/.235 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 52 games on Tuesday. He made mechanical adjustments, including changing his swing angle and focusing on hitting the ball to center and right field, which provided cause for encouragement.
The A’s, embarking on a major rebuild, can afford more patience than the Braves team of recent years. They will let Pache endure his growing pains, hoping that will translate to realizing his potential down the line.
“You know how difficult this game is and as a young player the expectations that are imposed on you and that you put on yourself,” Oakland manager Mark Kotsay said. “You grind and grind. You want the results so badly (you push). I think there’s some of that happening right now. He made some adjustments with his swing, mechanically. He sticks with this approach even though there haven’t been a ton of results. We have seen a trend in the right direction, which is progress. His defensive ability.
“We were asked how you rate the level of confidence (of a young player). You rate him by the level of effort. He works hard in that. He has a good routine now. So we will continue to monitor that. It’s obviously performance-based, but we’re developing that here as well. There’s a balance to it all.”
Pache speaks well of the Braves, saying he cherished his time with the organization and the relationships he built. His former manager will always support him.
“He’s a wonderful kid,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “I hope he has a great major league career. He’s a nice guy. Very talented, young. He’s got a lot of upside, he’s still learning. I’m rooting like hell for a kid like that.