Braves: Similar moves to the Joc Pederson trade to add before the deadline (National League)

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After a lot of fans (myself included) and national media members pinned the Braves as potential sellers at the trade deadline, the Braves were the team that kicked off the festivities with a bang — and a solid move at that. I think Bryce Ball will be a great player, but he doesn’t fit Atlanta’s timeline right now, especially if the team extends Freddie Freeman. I think he could be Chicago’s first baseman of the future after Rizzo, but this article isn’t about them.

Alex Anthopoulos has made moves like this before; some have paid off, some have not. Pederson has a mutual option for $10 million next season, but the Braves clearly made a win-now move. So, I figured I’d break down some similar players on these shorter deals that the Braves could be interested in going into the trade deadline. There aren’t many sellers in the National League, but there are some interesting targets available. If you missed the first edition with American League players, you can find that below:


Similar moves to the Joc Pederson trade to add before the deadline (American League)


Richard Rodriguez, Pittsburgh Pirates

Strap in, there’s a few Pirates on this list. Rodriguez has been a bright spot on a bad Pirates team, and he would undoubtedly bolster a shaky Braves bullpen. Rich Rod has two more years of arbitration after 2021, so I don’t think he would be cheap. Rodriguez has only allowed 11 earned runs, 26 hits, and four walks over 37.1 innings — good for a 2.65 ERA and 0.80 WHIP. He has saved 13 games in 16 tries, and would immediately become Atlanta’s closer of the present and future.


Adam Frazier, Pittsburgh Pirates

As Chip Caray likes to call him, Athens native Adam Frazier would fit like a glove in Atlanta. He’s an incredible hitter, posting a .326 average and .846 OPS, exactly what the Braves need. Frazier can play almost any position on the diamond, so he could easily slot in somewhere and make an immediate impact. Frazier, like Pederson, has one more year of team control.


Bryan Reynolds, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Braves would have to pay up big time for the All-Star Reynolds, even if he didn’t have four more years of control under his belt. His switch hitting and .909 OPS would appeal to any club, but with the futures of Cristian Pache and Marcell Ozuna looking cloudy, Reynolds would be fantastic for the Braves for many years to come. Even though he has 17 home runs, Reynolds is still hitting over .300, showing that he can be a steady presence for a Braves team that needs guys who can get on base.


Craig Kimbrel, Chicago Cubs

There were reports that the Cubs did not include Kimbrel in any of their trade talks involving Joc Pederson, but the source has been pretty unreliable in the past (Nightengale, Bob), so I’m including him here. Kimbrel has a pretty expensive $16 million option for next season that has vested, but he has been worth the money in 2021 after a slow start in Chicago. Kimbrel has a ridiuclous 0.53 ERA, 21 saves, and a 0.65 WHIP. It would be cool to bring Kimbrel back to Atlanta regardless, but he’s even more enticing with the way he has been playing.


Richard Bleier, Miami Marlins

I try to avoid trades within the division, but this trade makes way too much sense. Bleier actually has one more year of arbitration at the age of 34, but he has a 2.29 ERA over 35.1 innings pitched. The Braves need lefty bullpen arms badly, and Bleier is one of the few good ones available.


Eduardo Escobar, Arizona Diamondbacks

Escobar is similar to Frazier; he’s a solid hitting utility-man that can play all over the diamond. While he would be a true rental for the Braves, he’s a switch hitter with a .778 OPS that the Diamondbacks will not want to lose this offseason for nothing.


David Peralta, Arizona Diamondbacks

Peralta has a pretty reasonable $7.5 million on the books next season, and he’s someone who will immediately help Atlanta hit from the left-handed side this year and next. He only has four home runs on the season and a .713 OPS, but Peralta hits tons of doubles and leads the majors in triples.


Caleb Smith, Arizona Diamondbacks

Left handed relievers are slim for the pickings, but Smith could make sense — especially at his likely price point. The former Marlin has two more years of arbitration, and he’s been a good innings eater and spot starter with 71.1 innings under his belt. He has taken some beatings as a long reliever for a bad Diamondbacks team, and I think he’s a bit better than his 4.54 ERA would indicate. I would bring him on for a pretty low cost.


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