What type of players should the Braves be looking for at the trade deadline?

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Most believe the Braves should pack it in and sell at the trade deadline. Truthfully, I can’t really argue with them right now, but if Atlanta can stay afloat over the next couple of weeks, there’s a case to be made for Alex Anthopoulos to buy at the trade deadline. I laid out those reasons earlier this week, and a lot of it comes down to just how random baseball can be at times. If the Braves are only a few games out of first place come late July, they need to take advantage of the opportunity and do everything they can to make it to the postseason. However, their focus has to be on a certain type of player.

Given the circumstances — sitting a few games back without Mike Soroka, Marcell Ozuna, and Ronald Acuña for the remainder of the season — the Braves don’t have the luxury to go all out for this season. So, eliminate all potential one-year rentals from the list of Alex Anthopoulos’ potential trade targets. In the postseason, everybody has a chance, but that still doesn’t justify the Braves giving up top prospects for a player that won’t be around past 2021. It would make no sense for the Braves to trade for a player who is a free agent this winter.

Secondly, every move Anthopoulos makes has to be financially aware. As every Atlanta fan knows, the Braves don’t have the luxury to spend stupid money like the Dodgers and Yankees, or even like teams in their own division such as the Phillies and Mets. The Braves will always be on a strict budget as long as they are owned by Liberty Media. With that in mind, Anthopoulos needs to be on the search for controllable players that won’t bust the bank.

Slowly, the Braves will continue to owe Ronald Acuña and Ozzie Albies more money. Freddie Freeman is up for a mega-extension, and Atlanta would be foolish not to hand him whatever he desires. The Braves are also unlikely to get out from under Marcell Ozuna’s contract even if he is proven guilty in his current domestic violence dispute. All of this adds to the pressure on Alex Anthopoulos to be wise with his money. Don’t expect the Braves to go after anybody with a hefty price tag or set to become a free agent after this season, but if the right deal comes along for a cost-controlled starter, that should pique the interest of Anthopoulos if the Braves are still in it come the trade deadline.

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