Bullpen is an interesting target area for the Braves. It is a strong area for the team, but you can never have enough talented relief arms. The Braves have had pretty inconsistent performances from Will Smith, so they could use a high-leverage lefty to move Smith to a lower leverage role. The question begs to be asked — would All Star southpaw Gregory Soto be worth the price?
The Tigers and Braves could have struck a deal for Soto at last year’s trade deadline, but nothing came of it. The Braves could also use a lefty bat, and the Tigers have a few options that can switch hit or bat from the left side. Harold Castro is an interesting name to throw into the fold. If you missed any previous editions of this series, check them out below:
- Braves: Who Says No — Andrew Benintendi Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Brandon Drury Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Ian Happ Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Josh Rojas Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Colorado Rockies Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Cavan Biggio Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Pittsburgh Pirates Trade Package
- Braves: Who Says No — Frankie Montas Trade Package
LHP Gregory Soto
Innings Pitched: 33.1
UTIL Harold Castro
Slash Line: .281/.312/.411
Home Runs: 4
Runs Batted In: 20
Gregory Soto comes with a few red flags; this is absolutely a buyer beware situation. He gives up a lot of hard contact, which is obviously concerning, but he doesn’t carry the same sharp loss in spin rate that Richard Rodriguez suffered from last year. Soto still gives up more walks and hits than you would want out of a high-leverage arm. There could definitely be some regression in line, but he is a quality piece and under team control until 2026, which will also increase his price.
Castro may be a more desirable piece than Soto. He also has three more years of arbitration eligibility, so he won’t hit free agency until 2026 either. This is an interesting hinge point for the Braves — they may not need him for that long, but it’s nice to have the control. Castro is a bit of a late bloomer, debuting in 2018 in spurts and playing pretty well for Detroit. This year as a full time player, he’s been pretty consistent. He would make for an excellent left-handed platoon option, and he can play just about any position on the diamond. The Braves should value that type of versatility, especially with Adam Duvall out for the season.
#3 SS Braden Shewmake, #8 OF Jesse Franklin, #11 RHP Darius Vines, #15 SS Cal Conley, #22 LHP Adam Shoemaker
The Tigers have gotten mixed results from their promising young arms, so perhaps they’d be interested in some bats. Braden Shewmake is having some trouble in AAA, so he could use a fresh start. He fits their timeline better than the 28 year old Castro. Jesse Franklin has a ton of potential as a power bat, and Vines has some upside as a starter or a high floor as a bullpen arm. Shoemaker and Conley are both college talents from the 2021 MLB Draft. The Braves are giving up a lot of prospects here, but that’s what you have to do to get talented guys under team control. With the 2022 Draft over, the Braves can afford to ship off a few guys who may not have a path to Atlanta.
So, who says no?
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