The Major League baseball trade deadline is 11 days away and if you have been following the Atlanta Braves at all you know they need offense. Most notably in the outfield where the trio of Jason Heyward, Nate McLouth, and Jordan Schafer has been one of the worst in the majors in terms of production. Also all three of those guys hit left handed and the Braves are looking for more right handed power production.
The first bomb of a potential deal came from David O'Brien's Twitter Feed:
Sounds as if the #Braves could be close to making a deal for a RH bat
If it's strictly a RH bat then that eliminates the Met's Carlos Beltran. Yes he is a switch hitter but he doesn't hit lefties well and most of his power comes from the left side. Possibilities could be Hunter Pence, Ryan Ludwick, Carlos Quentin, Josh Willingham, Michael Cuddyer and wait for it....wait for it...my personal favorite...Matt Kemp.
Kemp is a dream acquisition for myself and the Braves organization. He would fit in perfectly and could play centerfield for the next 5 seasons. He's a potential 40/40 guy and he is a superstar. But right now he plays on a franchise that is in financial shambles and if the Braves were going to get him they would have to give up Heyward, a top prospect pitcher (Minor, Teheran, Delgado, or Vizcaino) as well as a B prospect. Probably not going to happen with the rumors floating from Brave's Mark Bowman that opposing scouts have concerns about Heyward's swing and that he should probably be sent down to Gwinnett to work on it. Right now he is working with his personal hitting coach. Some guy named C.J. Stewart. You may have heard of him. Tonight he will be batting 5th in Denver. That seems appropriate considering how well he has been hitting the ball lately.
Ok enough of the sarcasm.
Heyward's trade value is considerably low right now even with his young age. He sits out too many games with various injuries and has even pulled himself out of the lineup which has sent off major red flags within the Braves organization. If the Braves could pull off a Heyward/Minor/and a B level prospect for Kemp then you have to do it. The problem is the Dodgers would probably not do it. They would want Teheran or a Beachy and the Braves aren't going to trade either one in my opinion.
So the Kemp trade is a pipe dream. But what about for Pence? Hunter is the most awkward looking outfielder I have ever seen play in the majors but you can't argue with his production and his hustle. He's a fan favorite in Houston and it would probably take a good haul to get him away from the Astros. I would trade Minor and some other prospect not named Teheran for him but I'm not willing to give up Heyward for Pence by any means.
I would definitely be open to getting Quentin. I'm not sure what the White Sox would want for him but I think you could get him for less than what the Astros would want for Pence. I'm not a huge fan of Ludwick, Willingham, or Cuddyer because I don't think they would bring considerable more production than what Heyward or McClouth bring right now.
So in conclusion if the Braves do make a trade which sounds imminent for a right handed bat the #1 guy would be Matt Kemp followed by Pence, Quentin, Ludwick, Willingham, and Cuddyer.
What do you think? Should the Braves still try to get Beltran and send Heyward down to work on his swing? Or should they shoot for the stars and get a Kemp or a Pence?