Braves trade hypothetical for Shane Bieber

MLB: SEP 22 Orioles at Guardians

The hot stove is cooking as December approaches. In recent days, several significant dominos have fallen and many more are expected as each day passes. The Braves are still in hot pursuit of another starting pitcher, and as the top free agents continue to fall off the board, many teams are beginning to turn to the trade market.

This continues a series where I come up with hypothetical trade packages for players who are rumored to be available. The latest rumor comes from Jon Morosi, who says the Cubs and Reds are talking to the Guardians and Rays in regards to Tyler Glasnow and Shane Bieber.

I’ve already come up with a hypothetical trade package for Tyler Glasnow, as well as several other players that are on the block. If you missed any of those, follow the links below.

Braves Trade Hypothetical for Shane Bieber

Braves Receive: Shane Bieber

Guardians Receive: Dylan Dodd and Spencer Schwellenbach

A couple of years ago, the Guardians would have laughed in the face of Alex Anthopoulos if he tried to offer something like this for Shane Bieber. However, the 2020 AL Cy Young recipient is a shell of the pitcher he once was, which can be attributed to a substantial dip in his velocity.

Shane Bieber has lost a full three MPH on his heater since he won the Cy Young. He averaged 14.2 K/9 in 2020 and 12.5 K/9 in 2021. That number was down to 8.9 last year and tumbled even further to 7.5 this season.

The root of the issue seems to be a shoulder injury Bieber suffered back in 2021. If you follow the site, you know how much I loathe these types of issues with pitchers. They are completely different from Tommy John surgery in that oftentimes pitchers are never the same, just look at how the Braves reacted to Kyle Wright after he dealt with a shoulder injury dating back to 2022.

I don’t expect the velocity to magically spike again, but Bieber has still had quite a bit of success despite the dip in velocity, recording a 2.88 ERA in 2022 over 31 starts and a 3.80 ERA in 2023.

Bieber’s entering his final year of arbitration, projected to make around $12 million. If you’re hoping to land an ace, look elsewhere. But for a couple of mid-level prospects, the Braves might want to take a shot on him. At the very least, he brings some stability to Atlanta’s rotation, along with some upside.

Photo: Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire

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