Since the trade deadline, the Braves have been absolutely unstoppable. They have won 13 of their last 15 games, giving them a four game lead in the division after trailing by five games just weeks ago. It’s been a remarkable turnaround that’s taken place in the blink of an eye, and a lot of credit has to be given to Alex Anthopoulos for the trade deadline acquisitions he made.
This will be a two part series. Today, I’ll take a look at the players the Braves acquired, and tomorrow, we’ll peak at how the players the Braves traded away are faring with their new teams. Baseball trades are never won in the first few weeks; it usually takes years to determine the winner of a particular trade, so this will be something I check in on periodically.
After the Acuña injury, much of Braves Country was ready to wave the white flag. The team had given no indication that it was ever going to eclipse the .500 mark, and the clubhouse had a stale feel about it, which is the complete opposite of how it has been over the last four years.
Enter Joc Pederson. He hasn’t been a world-beater since joining the Braves, recording three homers and an .801 OPS in 30 games. However, his addition to the lineup gave a dying team life. Ever since he joined, the vibe has completely changed, and that’s normal when a general manager chooses to show faith in the team. Had Anthopoulos not made that trade, the Braves might not have been able to stay afloat, and they very well could have ended up selling on deadline day.
Rosario hasn’t made his Braves appearance to this point, but he is rehabbing in Gwinnett. Hopefully, it’s not too much longer before he re-joins the team, but either way, this was a trade the Braves couldn’t lose. All they gave up for Rosario was Pablo Sandoval, who was going to be released anyways.
Soler was having a miserable season with Kansas City, but he’s been much better so far with the Braves. In 17 games, he may only be hitting .238, but he has three homers and has shown he is willing to take his walks. Soler already has 13 free passes in a Braves uniform, leading to a .368 OBP.
Wow, was it an abysmal decision to let Adam Duvall walk, especially for what he signed for in the offseason, but at least Alex Anthopoulos didn’t double-down on his decision and found a way to bring him back. The guy may only be hitting .200 with the Braves over 18 games, but he’s taking his walks, leading to a .316 OBP, and he already has five homers. Duvall has a mutual option for next year which the Braves will surely pick up. However, I imagine he will strongly consider opting out and looking for a multi-year deal. Either way, he needs to be back in Atlanta next season.
Rodriguez has come as advertised since he was acquired. He gave up his first run for the Braves in his last outing on Wednesday against the Marlins, but there was a lot of luck involved to get that runner across the plate. Other than that, Rodriguez has been flawless, as he boasts a 0.90 ERA and 0.900 WHIP in his first ten innings with the Braves.
Typically, you have to wait and see how the prospects given up perform before judging trades, which can take years. That’s not the case with these deals. All of these acquisitions were desperately needed, and if they keep this up, it will be viewed as a win for the Braves.