Atlanta Braves: Trade Deadline Pieces If The Braves Retool

Potential Trade Pieces for The Atlanta Braves (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Potential Trade Pieces for The Atlanta Braves (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /
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Atlanta Braves
ATLANTA, GEORGIA – MAY 20: Drew Smyly #18 of the Atlanta Braves pitches in the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Truist Park on May 20, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

The following trades that the Atlanta Braves could possibly make, are not as likely as the previous, but would potentially net bigger gains.

Shane Greene

Had Shane Greene been with the Atlanta Braves since the start of the season, he would have been in the “very likely” category. But, he has yet to play a game for the major league squad. Not to mention, the Braves waited a long time to finally have him pitch for them.

He has been ramping things up, and if he can show that he has knocked off the rust, he could be a very desirable piece for a competing team. Any team had the ability to sign Greene before the season started, so it would seem odd that he would be listed as desirable trade bait.  However, it is pretty obvious at this point that the reason he had not signed was that he was asking for too much money.

Now that his contract is very palatable for any team at the pro-rated 1.5 million, his trade value has most likely gone up enough for the Atlanta Braves to at least take offers on him.

Drew Smyly

For the first few starts of his tenure with the Atlanta Braves, this one year deal looked like a bust. His trade value was non-existent with that 11 million dollar contract. If this were a list of contracts the Braves wished they could get rid of, Smyly would be on the top of the list with Ozuna.

As every day goes by, his contract would cost less and less for the potential trade partner. Also, outside of that terrible start against Boston, Smyly seemed to have turned things around in May. From May 6th-20th he had 3 starts going 6 innings and giving up 3 runs or less. He also only walked 6 in 18 innings in that span.

If he can continue to trend upward, he may gain enough trade value that would be worth another team to giving the Braves a lottery ticket prospect on top of taking on the salary. Time will tell. Just like with any trade, both teams have to want to make it.

Charlie Morton

Morton is having a down year, there is no denying it. His 4.11 ERA is much worse than the 3.24 ERA, 3.26 FIP, and 130 ERA+ we had become accustomed to from 2017-2019. His contract is not very cheap either with a potential trade partner possibly taking on a pro-rated 15 million. He is also a free agent at the end of the year, so he would be strictly a rental.

However, Morton does have more trade value than any of the previous players mentioned. He has a solid track record, name recognition, and is still serviceable enough to be worth trading for with an ERA+ of 106. It is hard to gauge how teams value post-season experience, but he has plenty of that too.

Obviously, Atlanta Braves fans would hate to see Charlie Morton go. The Braves also would not want to give up a dependable innings eater like Morton, even if they end up being in a scenario where they are virtually guaranteed to not make the playoffs.

However, competing teams always want starting pitching. If a bidding war ends up happening for Morton, and the Braves get a trade package they like, it would be the right business move to make the trade.