Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 14, 2021 by Sports Time Radio in sports

I brought up a bit of an interesting point on the Sports Time Radio podcast yesterday and I’d like to take a deeper look at it here. If you weren’t listening yesterday to catch you up I asked if the Atlanta Braves could be sellers at the trade deadline.

Now the Braves have had some bad injury luck this season like a few other teams. Of course the worst blow for the Braves was losing Ronald Acuna Jr. for the remainder of the season with a torn ACL. Now add this to the other injured Braves. Travis d’Arnaud is also out for the rest of the season while Marcel Ozuna is recovery from a dislocated finger, but is also dealing with the domestic violence situation he had with his wife; so who knows if he’ll be back this season. They’re also missing starting pitchers Mike Sororka and Touki Toussaint for what seems like the rest of this season. You can also throw in the injured Huascar Ynoa who actually fractured his hand while in the dugout. Ynoa had been filling in as a starter and while it appears he may be ready to return this season it’s unclear when he’ll be back.

Now the Braves are far from out of the race in the National League East. Atlanta comes out of the All-Star break one game under .500 with a record of 44-45. That puts the Braves in 3rd place 4 games behind the division leading New York Mets and a half of a game behind the 2nd place Philadelphia Phillies.

The question is; do the Braves have enough to compete with the injuries they’ve had? Or might they be better off dealing some of their veterans and adding some more young pieces to an already good minor league system?

Atlanta has some veteran pitchers on good contracts that could interest teams that think they’re contending and they probably wouldn’t have to give up a very top level prospect to get them.

Charlie Morton is just under contract for the rest of this season and has 8-3 record with an ERA of 3.64 in 18 starts. Now Morton is 37 years old and has an impressive post season resume. I think every contending team could use some like Morton in their starting rotation down the stretch.

Drew Smyly is also just under contract for the remainder of this season. Now Smyly is just 32 years old and has had some injury issues throughout his career, but he’s made 15 starts for Atlanta covering 78 1/3rd innings. Smyly is 7-3 with a 4.48 ERA this season. He could be a solid add to the back end of a contenders starting rotation.

Now the Braves also have some relievers that could draw some interest. Chris Martin, Josh Tomlin and Shane Greene are all just under contract for the rest of this season.

Martin would probably draw the most interest if he was made available. While Martin is 0-3 this season he has posted an ERA of 3.32 in 23 appearances. Martin Is just owed the rest of his $7 million dollar contract for this season.

Tomlin could function as a swing man and has been a starter in the past. Tomlin is 36 years old and has appeared in 27 games this season. He is 3-0, but has an ERA of 5.94 over 36 1/3 innings which is the second most out of the Braves bullpen this season. Tomlin would be owed the remainder of his $1 million dollar salary.

Greene is an interesting case. He wasn’t signed with a team at the beginning of the season and the Braves brought him in on a prorated contract of just under $1.2 million dollars for this season. No Greene hasn’t pitched well since being brought up by Atlanta. He is 0-1 with an ERA of 10.64 in 13 games this season covering 11 innings. Now if a team thinks they can get Greene right he could probably be had for a low level minor leaguers. Remember is a former closer who once posted 32 saves in a season.

Now it’s not just pitchers that could draw some interest if the Braves decided to look into the trade market. Atlanta has a couple of veteran bench players that could be very solid adds for a contending team.

Now Ender Inciarte is in the final year of his contract, but does have a $9 million dollar club option for next season. Inciarte has appeared in 52 games this season for Atlanta, but has only gotten 79 at bats; so it appears he being used more as a defensive replacement this season. As a result of limited at bats Inciarte is hitting just .215 this season, but has posted better numbers with regular at bats.

The other bench player who might draw some interest could be “The Panda” Pablo Sandoval. Now it’s clear that Sandoval wouldn’t be a huge add for a team and would probably be used as a pinch hitter, but he’s shown that he’s been able to have success in that role and could give a team some time at 1st or 3rd base and of course as a Designated Hitter. Plus we’re talking about a player who has been on three World Series winner and was the MVP of one of those World Series. Then add in the fact that Sandoval would only be owed the remainder of his $1 million dollar salary for this season.

Alright; so what do you think the Braves will do. It’s very doubtful that they would be buyers at the trade deadline, but do you have them as standing pat or as sellers?

Don’t forget to listen to the live edition of the Sports Time Radio podcast on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live just head on over to TuneIn.com and you can listen any time you want to.

You can also find me on Twitter @Burketime

  1. The New York Met’s lead in the NL East certainly isn’t insurmountable. So I would be completed shocked if the Braves went into a sell mode on July 30. Even though they had that recent catastrophic injury to their best player, they still have a decent chance at making the playoffs.


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