The Braves are absolutely loaded at every position. The lineup isn’t only deep 1-9; it’s got bench pieces that would be starting on most other clubs.
The starting lineup could use another frontline starter, but Max Fried should be returning soon after the All-Star break. The bullpen is probably the one facet that could use addressing, but even still, it’s not in desperate need of a high-powered arm.
Still, the trade deadline is approaching, and you can bet your bottom dollar that Alex Anthopoulos will be scouring the market for any potential move that will improve the club. Regardless of who it is, expect the Braves to make an acquisition. I tend to think the team will target another reliever, but there’s no guarantee anything will come to fruition. After all, it’s a seller’s market, and AA will not overpay.
However, he does have one massive trade chip stashed away in Gwinnett — Vaughn Grissom.
Grissom burst onto the scene in 2022 due to injuries; the 22-year-old made his major league debut last year in place of Ozzie Albies and impressed in 41 games, posting a .291/.353/.440 slash line, good for a 121 wRC+ while playing decent defense at second.
Injuries once again forced him into Atlanta’s lineup in 2023. This time, it was at shortstop for Orlando Arcia, and it was a disaster, particularly on defense. Grissom accumulated six errors in only 18 starts. Moreover, his bat was no longer a bright spot, sporting a wRC+ was 29% below the league average.
Despite some struggles in 2023 with Atlanta, Grissom is back with the Stripers, improving his trade value. On the season in Triple-A Gwinnett, he is slashing .310/..392/.452 with two long balls and 24 extra-base hits, good for a .844 OPS as well as ten stolen bags across 60 games.
The Braves could potentially flip Grissom for a high-leverage reliever. There’s not an obvious spot for him in Atlanta, but maybe the club hangs on to him as insurance in case Orlando Arcia experiences severe regression. It’ll be an interesting trade deadline. Grissom can absolutely be a productive major leaguer, but it might not be with the Braves.
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