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Braves Playing Hot Stove Hardball with Trades

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It may not be the Tampa Bay Devil Rays give-me-all-your-prospects approach, but our approach certainly seems to be one that is demanding top dollar for any player the Braves are offering in a trade. Perhaps that is why we were unable to get any sort of warm body in return for Marcus Giles. But Giles and LaRoche are very different types of players to be trading, so I'll give Schuerholz credit for trying to get maximum value for Adam.

The juiciest tidbit of rumoring comes from Ken Rosenthal who says the Braves may be targeting Chris Ray of Baltimore:

The Braves probably would want another player in addition to Ray -- perhaps Penn. They have been reluctant to trade LaRoche for Pirates closer Mike Gonzalez without receiving another piece in return.

He doesn't cite a source or an anonymous club official; instead this seems to be pure conjecture. But his comments do give us some insight into what we are expecting in return for LaRoche - which seems to be two players. For my two cents, I would do Ray and Penn for LaRoche in a heartbeat.

Along with the talks between the Braves and Orioles heating up, we get word that the talks between the Braves and Pirates have cooled off - most likely because of what Rosenthal alludes to above; that the Braves want another piece in addition to Gonzalez. The Braves also seem to be demanding a lot of the Yankees if they were to indeed flip Gonzalez to New York. I had mentioned yesterday that the Braves were after Scott Proctor along with Melky Cabrera, and that is echoed in this NY Post bit:

As for the Yankees adding Gonzalez, the Pirates are dragging their feet. They have returned to the original plan of wanting lefty-hitting first baseman Adam LaRoche from Atlanta. However, the Braves want Gonzalez and more and the Pirates are balking at the proposal.

If the Braves land Gonzalez, they want to deal him to the Yankees. Initially, they asked for Scott Proctor and Melky Cabrera. That was too high for the Yankees, who have questions about Gonzalez, who missed the final five weeks of last season with tendinitis after going 24-for-24 in save situations.

The Red Sox, who are still closer-less, are also believed to be interested in Gonzalez. Here is some insight into what they might be willing to offer:

Pittsburgh is expected to have at least one opening in their bullpen, once they decide where to trade 28-year-old Mike Gonzalez.

The Sox, New York Yankees and Atlanta are believed to be the most ardent pursuers of the lefty. The Sox have mentioned Coco Crisp and Eric Hinske, but the Bucs are believed to have their eye on either Braves first baseman Adam LaRoche or Yankees outfielder Melky Cabrera.

Yumm! That's some good Tuesday morning rumor.