The Braves have two significant holes on the roster at the moment — the outfield and the fifth spot in the rotation. They could make a trade, but as I’ve stated several times, acquiring anything substantial this early in the season would require Alex Anthopoulos to overpay significantly. I just don’t see that happening, especially when reinforcements like Mike Soroka and Eddie Rosario are on their way back.
If the Braves are going to bring in a new face, it’s much more likely that they search the bargain bin, and funny enough, there are a couple of familiar faces that make some sense.
I was surprised Teheran didn’t get at least an opportunity to try out for a major-league rotation. Perhaps the shortened Spring Training had to do with it, but regardless, he has since signed with the Staten Island Ferry Hawks of the Independent League and is mowing down opponents. Through 33.2 innings pitched, Teheran has a minuscule 1.60 ERA, 0.992 WHIP, and more than respectable 9.4 K/9. Eventually, a major-league team is going to give him a chance, so why not the Braves?
I’m a big believer in Spencer Strider and think he should be given a shot in the rotation. However, because of the injuries to Luke Jackson and Tyler Matzek, Strider’s high-powered arm is needed in relief. The Braves could look at this as a ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ situation, which means they need to find another starter. Currently, none of their other prospect arms have proven to be up to par, so bringing in a veteran like Teheran, who had his best years in Atlanta, makes some sense. It probably won’t happen, but I wouldn’t be shocked if a conversation between the Braves and Teheran’s represantives occurrs. Whether it goes anywhere is an entirely different story.
I’m admittedly laughing as I type this because I was ready to call Inciarte an Uber to the airport when the Braves finally decided to designate him for assignment, and I’m not really sure he would be much of an upgrade. However, when I look at the Braves outfield, I’m hoping for two things — guys that can get on base and play great defense. They don’t have anything close to that right now, and while Inciarte’s bat has become a question mark, he can get on base at a decent clip and is elite in the field. Inciarte is currently in the Yankees farm system, but I doubt it will take more than a ham sandwich to acquire him if the Braves were interested.