The MLB trade deadline may still be weeks away, but the deliberations of what decisions to make in late July are already happening.
The MLB trade deadline officially hits on August 1st, and the rumors are going to start moving quickly long before that. While the deadline is still weeks away, front offices are already working hard to formulate strategies on what they hope to accomplish before that day hits. As usual, the trade deadline serves as the biggest opportunity teams have to fortify their rosters for the remainder of the year.
The Atlanta Braves, at first glance, don’t need to do much. At 31-20, they stand atop their division by nearly 5 games while also holding the best record in the National League. The promises of what was expected from this team have, thus far, rung true.
But that’s a dangerous mindset to adopt for the trade deadline. Now is not the time to build hubris. All too often teams that looked ready to win it all at the deadline got complacent, fail to make big moves, and find themselves out of it by early October. That should not be acceptable for Atlanta.
There’s a flip side to that, too, though. Making a move simply for the sake of making a move isn’t right either. It’s got to be the right deal.
Ultimately, the Braves don’t have to make a move, but they must be deliberating and making considerations about moving players and upgrading certain areas of the roster.
The ultimate goal for the Braves should be to acquire another strong starting pitcher. Spencer Strider and Max Fried have been great. Kyle Wright has been good, too. But Charlie Morton and Ian Anderson both have 4.00+ ERAs and a WHIP above 1.2. That pulls the Braves starting staff as a whole down to 18th in the majors in WHIP (walks plus hits divided by innings pitched). The Braves have continued to win, but will be even more intimidating if they can add another strong starter to the mix.
Perhaps even more important than deciding who to trade, though, is deciding who not to trade. For that reason, we’ll close this one by looking at one player I think the Braves need to make sure they hold onto.
Let’s jump in.