There is no longer any reason at all to complain about the Jason Heyward trade. On November 17th, 2014, Jason Heyward was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals along with Jordan Walden in exchange for Tyrell Jenkins and Shelby Miller.
This headline came across the phones of most Braves fans and caused a rollercoaster of emotion. This officially kicked off the rebuild, and left Atlanta fans with a lot of questions. At first, I was naturally upset to see one of my favorite players go. Most fans were angry, and didn’t understand why a guy who seemed to be the future of the franchise was traded away for a minor league pitcher and a guy with a lot of question marks. At first glance, I didn’t like it. I began doing a little research, and recalled that Jason Heyward’s contract was set to expire after the 2015 season. It seemed like a necessary evil, but I still wasn’t happy about the situation. I wondered if Jason wanted to re-sign, but after the front office made it clear Jason wanted too much money, I grew at peace with the deal. Shortly after, Atlanta signed Nick Markakis for a nice contract for 4 years, $44 million. Now, it was time to see what Shelby Miller could do. His year started off red hot, but after almost no-hitting the Marlins, he hit a winless streak of epic proportions. Aside from his dreadful W-L record, he had a great year. Jason had a great year as well, and led the Cardinals to 100 wins. However, as much as I loved Heyward, he did have a tendency to be a bit streaky.
Let’s look at the stats for 2015:
Jason Heyward: .293, 13 HRs, 60 RBIs
Jordan Walden: 0.87 ERA, only 10.1 IP though.
Shelby Miller: 6-17, 3.02 ERA, 205.1 IP, 171 Ks
Tyrell Jenkins (AA & AAA): 8-9, 3.19 ERA, 88 Ks
After the 2015 season, Jason Heyward signed with the Chicago Cubs for 8 years, and $184 million. Shelby Miller was traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks for #3 RHP Prospect Aaron Blair, #10 overall prospect Dansby Swanson, and CF Ender Inciarte, who hit .303 last year and made many star studded defensive plays. Let’s review what the Braves got for giving up one year of Jason Heyward now:
6 years of Tyrell Jenkins, Dansby Swanson, and Aaron Blair, and 5 years of Ender Inciarte.
An injured Jordan Walden and absolutely nothing else.
As much as it hurts to see a fan favorite go, the Heyward deal turned out to be for the best. Jason would not have re-signed, and would not have gotten an offer that lucrative from the Braves. Hart and company made the right call on this one.