i didn't realize another similar post was up before this. I started typing the fanpost before (the other one) but wife served dinner and I stopped typing. Watched a little Trueblood on HBO and then finished the post. Sorry for beating a dead horse. That wasn't my intentions. 11:24 PM
I know!!!!!!!! Our team seems prime for a breakout win streak and it could very well happen against the Mets after the break. I know!!!!!!!!!! We just got rid of the abomination we called Frenchy. I know, I know , I know.
However, the next two weeks could very easily be the nail in the coffin. We meet the Mets (4), Giant Aces (4), Brew Crew Bats (3), Marlins (3), and Manny (1) before the deadline. This is a tough stretch and as a pessimistic ASS I'm assuming were lucky to pull a .500 record before the deadline.
The braves farm system is annually consider one of the best in the business but it's very obviously that we lack positional depth in the IF and bats in general. We have depth with arms and many high ceiling types but we truly have glaring whole with our positional players. I know!!!!!! We have Heyward, Freeman, and Schafer. However, besides them who do we really have after that? My point..........
If we drop the ball after the all star break we should serious consider dealing some pieces and re-stock the cabinets. Players I think we should consider moving: Gonzo, Soriano, Vazquez, ( I would add Kawakami but I think he will be an ambassador for the Braves in Japan scouting once his contract is over. I just see them using his popularity and connections in Japan.)
Vazquez? I think that the Doc sweepstakes should be a good indication of what the Braves might be able to acquire. Obviously, Doc is on another level but none the less he is setting the market whether he is dealt or not. The teams merging as the front runners are as follows: Phillies (We won't deal to them), Cardinals, and Rangers. The rangers seem to match up best but have money issues. If the braves eat Vazquez contract (later half of 2009) he becomes much more attractive as Texas can buy out Padilla option for 1.75 million and cover Vazquez cost for 2010. With the braves covering his cost they also get a better package in return. A realistic return would be the following:
I know!!!!!! Vazquez has a no trade clause but if the braves can pull this type of load then they should not hesitate. Though Vazquez is the best pitcher on our staff now we do have internal options to backfill for the 2009 season. Medlen could be serviceable until September when Hudson starts making his comeback. Maybe Hudson isn't the same when he gets back but you still picked up Feliz for 2010. This gives you flexibility with what you do with Hudson in 2010. A rotation of Lowe, JJ, Hanson, Kawakami, and Feliz is more tan serviceable. I know!!!!!! He's our top ace but sell high if your not in it for the ring.
Cardinals: Have similar money issues but once again we could cover the cost.
Here we have pitching issues after the trade. Yes, Medlen can fill and Hudson could pick it up where he left off but no Feliz to fill in. However, on the flip side you now have a stud OF that's MLB ready. Schafer or Rasmus? Good problem to have and good trade chip in the offseason to fit needs if need be. NO TRADE CLAUSE FOR CENTRAL.
Dodgers: Have the money
1) Kemp 2) Dejesus Jr. 3) Austin Gallagher 4)Nathan Evaldi 5) PTBNL
Soriano and/or Gonzo: nothing less than a top organizational prospect would do. Teams that come to mind
Rays: Tim Beckham and Reid Fonk we cover soriano salary. Jennings and Brignac we cover Soriano salary.
Rays: Gonzo for Brignac and PTBNL
Reds: Gonzo for Valaika and PTBNL
Dodgers: Dejesus Jr and Nathan Eovaldi for Soriano
Dodgers: Dejesus Jr for Gonao and PTBNL
I truly hope the braves pull together a nice win streak soon but I'm very doubtful of it actually happening. I think we have several pieces and talent for 2010 but we should capatilize on a "sell high" if were not in it for the ring. Medlen will be serviceable and the Hudson experiment will start no more than 3 weeks after the deadline. I don't see us trading both Gonzo and Soriano so technically we will still have a closer for our pen. With "Buddy" coming back and Valdez in the pen we will once again be serviceable.
I'm sure this post will piss many off on the blog but I wanted to start a discussion on the possibility that we might be sellers in July or August. Who do we match up with? Is my concern of NO farm system INF and general bat depth legitimate?