I listened to all of your suggestions (some were kinder than others), and decided to compile a new list. Just remember as you read this:
YOU HAVE TO GIVE UP TALENT TO GET TALENT. I’d like for us to get steals but I’m looking at this from a realistic standpoint. So if it seems like I’m “giving up too much” just remember that these offers can be modified. They’re just a general idea.
Dilmer Mejia and Alec Grosser for Tyler Clippard (Oakland A’s)
Once again, I’ll start with the most realistic trade on the list and then move on down to the bigger deals. Clippard is a consistent setup man, with a 2.83 ERA for 2015. He’s only 30, and many teams like the Jays and Nats are interested in getting him from the struggling A’s. Clippard is only under contract through this season, and the A’s are in last place in the AL West. Billy Beane will want talented young players as usual, as he has a knack for grooming MLB closers and dealing them for prospects. Mejia and Grosser are near the bottom of the Braves prospect list, and after adding Toussaint; they are more than expendable. Grosser is 4-4 with a 5.71 ERA in Rome, but has room to grow and is still considered a prospect. Mejia was 5-1 with a 2.07 ERA in the Braves farm system in 2014. If Beane asked for more, I’d add Garrett Fulencheck. Anything over that would be paying too much.
Jace Peterson and Max Fried for Dan Uggla (Washington Nationals)
Just kidding guys, moving on.
Jose Briceno, Christian Bethancourt, Jason Hursh and Rio Ruiz for Jonathan Lucroy & Jake Gatewood (Milwaukee Brewers)
Alright, I knew the Brewers said that Lucroy was unavailable a few weeks ago when the Braves tried to make a trade, but they will probably end up as the worst team in baseball at the deadline. This offer might just get them listening. These are all very good prospects, but we’d be getting a good prospect and a top 3 NL catcher in return. With nobody to protect Lucroy in the lineup, he’s batting .231, but his career average of .282 is impressive for a 29 year old. His cannon arm will make up for the defense we’re losing in Bethancourt. Hursh is expendable with the slew of arms Atlanta has. Briceno was acquired from Colorado in the David Hale deal, and is batting only .187 in Single A Carolina. His upside might be enough to get him to work in this deal. Ruiz will be compensated with Jake Gatewood. Gatewood won the 2013 Junior Home Run Derby at Citi Field in 2013, so he has power. He was considered with the top pick in the 2014 MLB Draft, but fell to 41st. At 6’5 and 190 lbs, he can be easily shifted from SS to 3B. At 19 years old he’s batting .227 with 2 Long Balls in Single A Wisconsin. A.J. Pierzynski is a fan favorite and is an amazing catcher, but at 38 he isn’t our long term solution. Bethancourt is suspect at best, and the defensive and mental errors can’t fly on this club.
Williams Perez, Max Fried, Jose Peraza and Lucas Sims for Chris Sale & Jacob May (Chicago White Sox)
Chris Sale has been on my list for 3 years now. We need another left handed pitcher in this rotation. At TWENTY SIX years old, Sale is 50-32 with a 2.76 ERA with 856 Ks. His career whip is 1.052, VERY low for a lefty starter. We would be giving up a lot, yes, but we are deep at starter and would have lefty and righty Cy Young candidates to lead our rotation. Perez has driven his stock up, and Fried and Sims are two of our top prospects. I know most of you don’t want to part with Peraza, but Simba and Jace have the middle infield locked down. Jacob May is a minor league outfielder who is batting .311 in AA Birmingham. If Sale gets on a team with some run support, his numbers would improve greatly. Also, the Braves would have him restricted to free agency until 2018. The White Sox have one of the worst records in the league. Could they use their greatest asset to rebuild their team from the bottom up?