Keith law ranks the Braves farm system

MLB: JUN 09 Nationals at Braves

Over at The Athletic, Keith Law ranked every farm system from 1-30. Unsurprisingly, the Braves are still near the bottom, ahead of only the Athletics, Angels, Marlins, and Astros.

26. Atlanta Braves

Atlanta has traded everyone, almost. There’s some pitching still here, more if J.R. Ritchie comes back 100 percent from Tommy John surgery, but most of those guys, even their top pitching prospects like Hurston Waldrep (No. 80), carry significant reliever risk, and Nacho Alvarez might be the only position player here who has a reasonable chance to be a regular.

It could be a lot worse. The Athletics are the worst team in baseball, have traded away nearly every member from a playoff team a few years ago, and still have the worst farm system in baseball. The Angels are in a similar spot after holding onto Shohei Ohtani, only for him to go a few miles down the road to the Dodgers in free agency. Those are some real dumpster fires.

The Braves are just fine because nearly their entire starting lineup is locked into long-term deals. The only position they really have to worry about in the near future is shortstop, and that happens to be the one position on the farm with some potential with Nacho Alvarez in the fold.

I would say the biggest concern regarding the Braves moving forward is their rotation. Max Fried could be gone after this season in free agency, and Charlie Morton is likely to retire. Chris Sale isn’t a long-term answer either. Spencer Strider is really the only guy they can 100% rely on for more than a few years.

I do find it funny, however, that Law seemingly never mentions AJ Smith-Shawver. He’s one of the few prospect gurus to leave Smith-Shawver off of his list of the top 100 MLB prospects. Some even have him in their top 50 after a stellar 2023 campaign.

No prospect is a slam dunk, but Law likes to act like Smith-Shawver doesn’t even exist in his write-ups. We will know a lot more about his future after this season, but he could certainly end up being a fixture in the Braves rotation for a long time, much like Hurston Waldrep.

Photo: David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire

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