The Atlanta Braves are fortunate they didn’t add these pieces at the trade deadline.
The Atlanta Braves had an active trade deadline looking nothing like last year’s summer frenzy. They completely rebuilt their outfield ahead of a 2021 playoff run that ended with a World Series parade.
This year, Atlanta had a few different needs. A starter, a reliever, and maybe a bat or two were all on the agenda. They managed to acquire each with some varying results.
What’s most important is that the team is winning. With a mix of contributions from the newcomers and the guys they already had, Atlanta can feel fortunate they didn’t make these three other trade deadline moves.
1. The Braves didn’t need to overpay for either guy the Yankees ended up with
The New York Yankees gave up a lot to acquire two of their players. Outfielder Andrew Benintendi and starting pitcher Frankie Montas were both options for the Braves to consider. Since arriving in New York, neither has played particularly well.
Benintendi’s bat has been slow to start, and only in the last days of August has it been anything like it was during his All-Star stretch with the Kansas City Royals. Frankie Montas has been far worse, although his most recent start against the New York Mets could be a sign of some more positive days ahead.
The Braves could have used both of these players. Benintendi would have been a different type of outfielder for them — a guy who prides himself on hitting for average more than power. Montas would have been a starting rotation upgrade over players like Ian Anderson. Instead, Atlanta has the far more affordable Robbie Grossman playing left field for them regularly, while it’s Jake Odorizzi they brought in to give the rotation some depth.
The Braves managed to hold onto important pieces of their farm system at the trade deadline. Had they paid the price for Benintendi and Montas and gotten the same results as the Yankees, the minor league pipeline would look much drier today.