Calm before the storm…
There’s only 11 shopping days left…
And no, I’m not talking about Christmas here people. There are only 11 shopping days left until the non-waiver trade deadline! You can think of it as early Christmas shopping for teams who feel they may have a shot at reaching the playoffs and/or the World Series.
Unlike the past few years, and not to say that it won’t heat up, this market is pretty devoid of big names – especially pitchers. Most baseball beat-writers, bloggers, and other people with opinions that count seem point out that there just aren’t any big name starting pitchers out there. Jason Stark of ESPN wrote a great piece in his latest Rumblings and Grumblings yesterday. You can read that for yourself, but suffice it to say there just don’t seem to be any #2 type starters available.
Interestingly enough, with the Reds just leaving town after sweeping away the Braves in three straight, there were plenty of rumors flying around about these two squads coming to some sort of deal on one, or a number of players. Nothing too detailed though, but one doesn’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that the Braves are hoping to win the East, while the Reds are trying to rebuild and reload around an already young talented core.
So the names floating around there for teams to take a shot at include primarily Ken Griffey Jr., Adam Dunn and Jeff Conine – two of whom seem to interest the Braves as more than a passing fancy. Rest easy folks, Adam Dunn is not coming to Atlanta. Skip Caray summed it up best in the finale of the series on Wednesday – the typical Adam Dunn day: a walk, two strikeouts and a 2-run homer.
The name that seemed to harbor the most overall interest, both in our pre and post-game programming and around the park seemed to be Bronson Arroyo. While he had a terrible first half, Arroyo is coming off a career season and pitches in a band-box park. His outing against Atlanta had Bobby Cox calling him one of the class pitchers in all of baseball in his book. That’s a tall compliment, and it only makes one think that if the Braves like what they see and the price is right then a deal could be struck.
It’s believed that Liberty Media could allow the Braves to expand their payroll, so there will be a move made. The obvious bargaining chips are Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Yunnel Escobar in the top-shelf variety and more recently struggling starter Kyle Davies who was demoted to Richmond after Wednesday’s 15 inning loss to Cincinnati. Davies arm is solid, but the inability to put together back-to-back quality starts has left Atlanta purplexed and frustrated. He could definitely draw some interest in a package deal. And of course, the Braves rich farm system still holds quite a few jewels that could be the right pieces to complete a trade at or before the deadline.
And so we are left with the age old quandry of trading the future for the present, youth for experience, prospects for veterans. Stick around here the next couple weeks – I’ll be adding the rumors and breaking down the deals that affect the Braves in the NL East.
Till next time,