The Braves have made it clear this offseason that they were willing to deal from their "surplus" of outfielders, and Cameron Maybin was the most likely of the outfielders to be moved. This has turned out to be the case, as the Braves have indeed traded Cameron Maybin to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for pitchers Ian Krol and Gabe Speier.
Braves acquire LHPs Ian Krol and Gabe Speier from the Detroit Tigers in exchange for OF Cameron Maybin and cash considerations.— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) November 20, 2015
Maybin started out the 2015 season on fire, which led a lot of us to believe that the Braves had gotten themselves an absolute steal from the trade that sent Craig Kimbrel and Melvin Upton's contract to the San Diego Padres. Eventually he leveled off, and naturally that had a lot of people who follow the Braves wondering if they should've struck when the iron was hot and dealt Maybin at or near the the trade deadline, in order to maximize the return for the 28-year old center fielder.
The Braves could have (and arguably should have) gotten more with a Maybin trade at that point, since the return for Atlanta here and now isn't exactly the most inspiring. Ian Krol is a lefty reliever who posted an ERA of 5.79, a FIP of 5.17, and an xFIP of 4.68 over 33 appearances in 2015. Meanwhile, Gabe Speier is a left-handed prospect who spent 2015 at the Tigers' Single-A affiliate, which is where he worked out of the bullpen.
The most valuable asset that the Braves received here would have to be the salary relief. They've got Maybin's contract off of the books now and they also received cash considerations. They'll be saving around $6.5 MM with this deal, which isn't the worst thing in the world. Once again, it has to be said that the Braves probably could've gotten more if they had traded Cameron Maybin earlier, as this figures to be a pretty meager return for the outfielder.