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Braves Quote For The Day ... Is That A Rumor I Hear

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Atlanta Braves beat writer Mark Bowman sparks the hot stove rumor mill with this nugget:

A Major League source said the Braves have informed some teams they might be willing to trade Jurrjens and Prado.

I do, of course, wonder how often teams like the Braves inform other teams that they are open to the possibility of trading a player, even a star player. Bowman goes on to add this:

The Royals are among the teams the Braves have approached about Jurrjens.  The Braves are interested in a number of Kansas City’s highly-regarded young prospects, including outfielder Wil Myers, who has spent the past few weeks impressing in the Arizona Fall League.

Along with Myers, the Braves have also talked to the Royals about Lorenzo Cain.  With centerfielder Michael Bourn’s contract set to expire at the end of the 2012 season, the Braves will spend time this winter looking at  Cain and other similar players who could serve as Bourn’s replacement.

Now before we get too excited about Myers and/or Cain (Lorenzo, not Herman), let's remember that this is just a rumor, even though there is a "source." With that said, I believe Lorenzo Cain was a player the Braves had interest in when he was with the Brewers. I seem to recall his name floating around some Yunel Escobar rumor.

I find it strange that the Braves would trade both Prado and Jurrjens, especially to one team. Though if you'll recall I've been talking about the Braves need to trade either one of these guys since the end of the season (and I got a lot of flack for it). So I feel somewhat vindicated that the Braves and I are on the same wavelength.

With that said I will repeat that Jurrjens is the one they should trade first. He's a Boras client, he's slated for a big salary increase each of the next two years, and the Braves have plenty of pitching to compete for his spot in the rotation. My scenario all off-season has been for the Braves to trade Jurrjens for a left-field power bat, and then use Prado in a super-utility role, where he would spell Chipper several times a week, as well as play some left, right, first, and second.

You might be saying, "but Prado's better than a utility player." I agree, which is exactly why he would be such a valuable utility player. And on a team where the third baseman probably shouldn't be playing everyday, it makes sense to have a very capable player available to fill in. It wouldn't be ideal for Prado, but it would allow Fredi Gonzalez to play some matchups and rest almost two-thirds of his lineup every week.

The luxury the Braves are in is that the don't necessarily have to move either of these guys -- they have options now that they saved some money by trading Derek Lowe.

I do love the hot stove rumor mill. If the Braves are serious about moving one of these guys, then it might be a very active hot stove rumor mill.