With only a week remaining, the hot stove his heating up. The Braves have already made their first two trades of deadline season, adding to their bullpen in the form of Taylor Hearn and Pierce Johnson. However, Alex Anthopoulos made it clear yesterday that he still feels the the team has plenty of room to improve, and he’ll do everything he can to make that happen before the trade deadline.
One area that most people have suggested the Braves bolster is the rotation. This has been a strong group all season, but with so many injuries, it makes a lot of sense for a loaded team like the Braves to ensure starting pitching won’t be a problem come October. Not much could potentially derail what is going on in Atlanta, but things could get dicey if one of Max Fried, Charlie Morton, or Spencer Strider is not 100% going into the postseason.
Call it insurance or call it a luxury, but the Braves could use it. This is a team that knows all too well how quickly things can go south when starting pitchers aren’t healthy. Both Max Fried and Spencer Strider entered last October far from 100%, and the Braves were bounced in four games by their division rivals in the NLDS. They need to do everything they can to ensure that doesn’t happen again. The problem is — in a seller’s market — reports are suggesting the price tag for starting pitching, even rentals, is sky high.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) July 25, 2023
This isn’t a new development. Starting pitching generally costs an arm and a leg at the trade deadline, which is why the Braves in the past — even with a much deeper farm system — opted not to go after any of the top guys.
I would like to say that will change this year, but sometimes a general manager has to roll the dice. If the Braves top guys are healthy going into October, they don’t need to add another starting pitcher. That’s a big risk, but unless Anthopoulos is willing to part ways with some of his top prospects, I don’t see them landing any of the bigger names on the market.
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