4 Atlanta Braves trade heists people don't talk about enough

Atlanta has made some truly great trades in their history that don't get enough recognition.
Division Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves - Game Two
Division Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves - Game Two / Adam Hagy/GettyImages
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Atlanta trades for Matt Olson in shocking twist

  • Date: March 14, 2022
  • Trade Details: Braves acquire Matt Olson while Athletics receive C Shea Langeliers, OF Cristian Pache, RHP Ryan Cusick, and RHP Joey Estes

The Freddie Freeman/Matt Olson saga is right on that line of being too recent and too high profile for this list. Freeman's departure was a huge deal in Atlanta and when the Braves moved on to Olson after Freddie's agents played hard ball with the wrong guy in Alex Anthopoulos, it marked the end of the era. However, what is often lost in the discussion is just how savvy this move ended up being for the Braves.

Other than his defense taking a step back from his days with Oakland, Olson has been everything the Braves wanted. He remains one of the game's premier power hitters and is coming off the best season of his career when he led the league with 54 homers, 139 RBI, and a .604 slugging percentage. Freeman is still a great player, but Atlanta could have done a LOT worse than Olson to be sure.

What puts this move on the list though is that the Braves landed Olson for a package that Atlanta does not miss basically at all. Langeliers is an uber-talented catcher, but the Braves stole Sean Murphy from them anyways and Langeliers has yet to eclipse a .700 OPS in the majors. Cristian Pache was highly touted as a prospect, but severe hit tool limitations and some injuries have kept him from reaching his ceiling.

Cusick throws really hard, but he is going to be lucky to be a big league reliever given his struggles with walking guys. As for Estes, he did make his big league debut last year and he does have a chance to be a big league starter, but that is a small price to pay for one of the best first basemen in all of baseball.