Monday, June 27, 2011

Do The Braves Need To Trade For Another Big Bat?

Should the Braves trade for a guy like Matt Kemp?

If you keep up with the Atlanta Braves, you know by now that the offense has been very streaky all season, and hasn't been hitting well as of late.  Whenever a team is in a playoff race, as the Braves are and should continue to be, people always want to add pieces to bolster a run for the World Series.  The idea of adding a right handed bat to the lineup, presumably a guy like Hunter Pence or Matt Kemp, does excite me.  However, at what cost does it become counterproductive to the progress of the organization?

Understand, to get a guy like Pence or Kemp, the cost will not be cheap.  Houston or the Dodgers will want MLB-ready players and prospects for their franchise guys.  To get one of these, the Braves would be asked to trade Craig Kimbrel or Jonny Venters or both.  Young stars like Martin Prado or Freddie Freeman would be hot commodities as well.  Also, a potential trade partner would want a top-level prospect or two, which could play in the Braves favor, as they do have tons of young starters.  Guys like Brandon Beachy, Mike Minor, Julio Teheran and Randall Delgado fit this bill.

If you were in Frank Wren's position would you do the following:
Hunter Pence for Craig Kimbrel/Martin Prado/Brandon Beachy or Venters/Kimbrel/Minor
Matt Kemp for Kimbrel/Venters/Prado or Kimbrel/Prado/Teheran

Realize, this is what these teams would be asking for their respective franchise players.  These types of players are hard to come by, and don't come cheap.  To think that the Dodgers or Astros would trade trade for only two Braves prospects is not going to happen.

If I'm Wren, there is no way I would mortgage the future of the franchise for one guy.  Remember, Prado will be coming back soon and with Jordan Schafer playing like a bona fide big leaguer, where would the extra outfielder go?  Going Prado/Schafer/Heyward with McLouth off the bench is a solid outfield, especially when Heyward gets back to full strength.  In the era of the pitcher, the Braves have the best bullpen in the majors, with young guys, no less.  There is no need to create a crowded outfield and lose two key arms in the pen.

It is possible that Wren will try to make a move to bolster the lineup, but don't expect it to be a franchise stick.  The cost is just too high.

Do you think the Braves need another bat?  If so, propose your trade in the comment section.  Don't buy the hype!


  1. I think the Braves are fine without adding a bat, they just need the players they have to click. McCann is doing more than fine, Chipper is good, although Uggla's avg. is atrocious he's putting up decent offensive numbers.
    I also don't want any part of a trade that involves Prado, Kimbrel, or Venters.

  2. The problem with the offense is that they lack the ability to manufacture runs. It takes either a blast or 3 hits to score a run. Schafer is helping with some speed at the top though. It's like Frank Wren said this weekend, we're 10 games over, and feel like we're playing like dogs. If everyone gets healthy, the Braves will be fine.

  3. Let me explain something, there would be 0 trade discussions that involved the names of freeman, kimbrel, or venters. Every MLB knows that they are not available and will not be unless they are offering Josh Hamilton or Justin Verlander. In a Kemp deal the more realistic deal would be a McClouth or Schafer or both along with Mike Minor or Randall Delgado and probably a Matt Lipka or Taylor Pastornicky because Furcal can not stay healthy. I am and I am sure the Braves are ok with parting with any of those players for Kemp... Prado is the future at 3rd base after Chipper and until Salcedo is MLB ready

  4. Justin, thanks for stopping by and commenting. I think you and I are in agreement here. We are both saying there will be no trade for Kemp. The Dodgers won't give up Kemp for Schafer/Minor/Pastornicky and with their financial trouble they certainly wouldn't take Nate McLouth. Kemp is only making $7 million this year and is a steal at that price, so there is no need to dump his salary in a panic. I also agree with you that the Braves shouldn't listen to any offers for Prado, Freeman, Kimbrel or Venters. That's why we won't be getting one of the best hitters in the NL like Kemp. No team is going to trade an affordable franchise player unless they get a too-good-to-pass-up offer.

    Here's something to think about: If Chipper does retire and his salary comes off the books, and maybe the Braves can get someone to take some of his salary and heaven forbid we find someone to take Kawakami, Kemp could be a possibility in free agency this offseason. He's definitely a 12-15 million a year guy for me, but I wouldn't go paying him like Jayson Werth. Should be interesting to see how it plays out.

  5. Chiming in a bit late, but I'd like to put my two cents in wherever it can be read. McCann is our only guy above .300. Freeman looks like he's going to be really good and is a more consistent hitter than Heyward, though the numbers are similar so far compared to Heyward's rookie year. Jones is gone at year's end unless we get cursed with Brett Favre syndrome. Prado is a keeper, no questions asked.

    I believe that with the exception of McCann, Freeman, Prado and the pinch hitters, the house needs to be cleaned. I believe in team chemistry and the braves are oozing it. I don't believe team chemistry is all it takes to win a world series. Balls need to find grass or outfield seats if the braves are serious about a world championship. For the most part, they are not.

    You only need 3 pitchers to win once you make it to the playoffs, and I believe we have guys who can pick up any slack created by the departure of a Kimbrell, a Venters, or even both. If I'm Frank Wren, I'd think seriously about a big trade for one, maybe even two BIG bats. We have the chips to bargain with, and we have replacements for those chips and everyone knows it.

    Aside from '95, the Braves have been a laughing stock. No other team has one as many division titles in a row, and no other team has reached the playoffs without winning a world series as often as the braves, except the Yankees who have 27 world titles. I'm sick of it, and I'm fairly certain attendance proves the majority of other braves fans are too. The win/loss record looks great right now, but all that ever means is a playoff spot.

    If a move isn't made for a bat, I'm a gambling man and large portions of my money is on an early exit (yet again) for the Atlanta Braves.

  6. Mr. Anonymous: Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I appreciate well thought out responses and yours is one. It will be interesting to see what Wren does here in the next couple weeks. I think the Braves will make a move for a bat, I just don't know where the bat will play. Prado will play third when Chipper is out, so maybe an outfielder can come in McLouth and Schafer can split time. When Chipper comes back, Prado will go to left. I know management has been pleased having Schafer fit the role of a true leadoff hitter. Will the Braves mortgage some of the future to make a run this year? That's the big question only Wren can answer.
    Also, feel free to bookmark us and stop by and comment anytime!

  7. well, I think it is time for the braves to land a big bat. With the edition of Michael Bourne, we know have a true leadoff hitter. We should try to trade for another big bat, like Carlos Quentin. Trade Jason Heyward and a second grade pitching prospect for him. Then set sail on a trade with the Mets for Jose Reyes, send Alex Gonzales, Mike Minor and Nate McClouth for reyes.
    Now that is a formidable, dangerous and down right scary lineup for any oppossing pitcher.