Ken Rosenthal on Braves early trade discussions

Alex Anthopoulos trade deadline

It’s still early, but the trade deadline is fast approaching, and it’s about the time when we start seeing some clubs more willing to sell. The Braves will not be one of those clubs. They’ll be buying, as Alex Anthopoulos always loves to do this time of year, and they have several pretty significant holes to try and fill before the final two months of the season.

Most notably, the Braves absolutely have to trade for an outfielder, preferably multiple, which Ken Rosenthal says Alex Anthopoulos is already trying to do.

“President of baseball operations Alex Anthopoulos already is exploring the market for outfielders, engaging in preliminary discussions with clubs, according to sources briefed on his conversations,” Rosenthal writes in his latest piece for The Athletic.

The hope is that Michael Harris II will be ready to return soon after the All-Star break, but he’s really the only outfielder on the Braves roster that has proven consistently he can be an everyday player. Jarred Kelenic has been fantastic as of late, but even with him, there are some concerns about his track record and whether he’s better suited as a platoon option. That’s why Alex Anthopoulos could be looking to add at least two outfielders over the next several weeks, but the outfield is only one of the areas the Braves could bolster, as Rosenthal notes.

“But Charlie Morton is 40. Reynaldo L√≥pez is starting for the first time since 2019. And Chris Sale has a long injury history. The Braves want to continue building in extra rest for their starters. They might need to supplement the current group, too.”

Adding another veteran starter as insurance is never a bad idea, but the Braves should be alright if everyone stays healthy. This has been one of the best rotations in baseball all season, and Spencer Schwellenbach is really beginning to establish himself while AJ Smith-Shawver and Ian Anderson are working their way back from injuries.

Rosenthal didn’t mention it, but shortstop is also a position that could be improved from a Braves trade. There won’t be many available options, but Orlando Arcia has been abysmal dating back to the second half of last year. The Braves could opt to give 21-year-old rising prospect Nacho Alvarez a shot, who is tearing the cover off the ball in Gwinnett, but that’s a risky proposition for a team with World Series aspirations.

Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

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