John Schuerholz was extremely busy at the trade deadline, and he’s definitely improved Atlanta this season. What this says about future seasons, though, is, uh, pretty unclear…
There were 3 deals today that the Braves got in on:
- Mark Teixeira and Ron Mahay for Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Elvis Andrus, Matt Harrison, Neftali Feliz, and Beau Jones.
- Octavio Dotel for Kyle Davies.
- Royce Ring for Will Startup and Wilfredo Ledezma.
I talked about trade #1 already. #2 is an even trade: the Braves get some much-needed bullpen help and the Royals get a pitching prospect. Davies probably wasn’t going to be back in Atlanta after getting on Bobby Cox’s list, so the fact that Atlanta could get the top reliever on the market for him is good, especially considering what Dayton Moore wanted from other teams (like, say, Phil Hughes). Ring for Startup and Ledezma, though, is weird. Ledezma was already DFA’d, so the Braves had no leverage with him. Thus, it’s basically Startup for Ring. Ring was excellent in the PCL this season, but has had some major control issues in the majors. Meanwhile, Startup is 4 years younger and has been a very good reliever in his minor league career. So I’d call that about a wash, although I’d personally keep Startup.
Thus, Atlanta really solidified its bullpen and added a major hitter to the lineup. They have a big hole at the #5 starter position, but that’s the only big hole that the Braves have—otherwise, they have a dominant offense, 2 excellent starters and another good one, a 4th starter who doesn’t suck, and a solid bullpen. Unfortunately, this comes at the cost of four highly-rated prospects, a young starter who has a chance to get it together, and a prospect reliever, so it’s a huge price.
Update: Once again, I forgot to plug my site. For information and statistics on the guys who were traded, as well as all of the other Braves minor leaguers, check out Project Kaleidic.