Outside of the Josh Donaldson signing, the Braves have been pretty quiet so far at the winter meetings. With the Phillies, Nationals, and even the Mets all loading up and getting ready for a postseason run, expect Atlanta to make a splash move very soon to put them above the competition. Here are a couple of names that have been floated out there and what some potential deals could look like.
Corey Kluber / Trevor Bauer
I think a deal for either of these guys will look pretty similar. Kluber is a perennial Cy Young candidate and a rare talent on the mound. Trevor Bauer has some of the nastiest pure stuff in baseball and finished 2018 with a 2.21 ERA. Both of these guys will come with a very hefty price tag. If the Braves are serious about acquiring an ace, either of these two guys is their best option on the trade market. These are a few guys who would likely be involved.
Sean Newcomb, Mike Soroka or Kyle Wright, Luiz Gohara, Kolby Allard, and Isranel Wilson
Robbie Ray / Zack Greinke
The Diamondbacks have seemingly waved the white flag with the Paul Goldschmidt trade, and Anthopoulos is likely to be calling about both of these guys. Unlike the Kluber or Bauer deal, the pieces in these deals would be very different. Ray won’t be a free agent until 2021 and Greinke won’t be until 2022, but Ray will be 30, and Greinke will be 38 making close to $35 million per year. In this scenario, the Braves would likely receive some money back in a Greinke deal, and it would be ideal if they could unload Teheran’s contract at the same time.
Ray: Kyle Wright, Bryse Wilson, and Luiz Gohara or Kolby Allard
Greinke: Julio Teheran, Luiz Gohara and Joey Wentz or Kyle Muller
This is probably my favorite hypothetical deal. The Braves would send a little money back for Teheran’s contract, but it’s worth it to clear out the rotation logjam and get a guy who logged a .859 OPS and 26 Home Runs. Haniger can play all 3 outfield positions and is under team control until 2023. Dansby Swanson leaving wouldn’t sit well with the fans, but this would allow Camargo or Albies to play shortstop full time and relegate Charlie Culberson to a super utility role. This may seem like a light return, but we’re talking about the team that gave up Edwin Diaz and $20 million to the Mets for little to nothing.
Dansby Swanson, Julio Teheran, Kolby Allard, Derian Cruz, and $4 Million
I’m not a huge fan of trading for Bumgarner but he’s 100% on this team’s radar. However, he is a 3-time world champion and has a career 2.11 postseason ERA and a 0.25 ERA (!!!) in the World Series. He missed some time last season after a dirtbike injury, but still posted solid numbers. He will be a free agent in 2020.
Mike Soroka, Luiz Gohara, Derian Cruz, and Kyle Muller
Fulmer had an ugly 2018, and he’s the perfect buy-low candidate for this rotation. He’s 2 years removed from an 11 win, 3.06 ERA season and could bounce back with a change of scenery. This deal hinges on how keen the front office is on dealing Dansby Swanson
Dansby Swanson and Kyle Muller or Joey Wentz