Throughout the 2016 season, there has been a ton of speculation surrounding the Atlanta Braves and potential trades involving veteran players. From Erick Aybar and Jason Grilli on the low end to Nick Markakis and, potentially, Julio Teheran on the high end, no veteran outside of Freddie Freeman appears completely safe from the trade market, and it would be tough to argue otherwise.
However, Jim Bowden of ESPN Insider ($) released a listing of "the best players who could be dealt by Aug. 1" and a surprising member of the Braves appeared. That player is closer Arodys Vizcaino.
The premise of the column, that also included Teheran and Markakis as options, was to align a potential trade candidate with a "best fit" team, and Vizcaino was pegged with the Toronto Blue Jays. Full context is available via the piece behind ESPN's pay wall, but Bowden contends that the Braves "have so many needs and can't let a 25-year-old reliever stand in the way if they can get a legitimate power bat prospect in return."
It should be noted that this is not a report that Vizcaino is on the market, but the mere mention of his name could force a reaction from the fan base. The talented right-hander has 29 strikeouts in only 19.2 innings during the 2016 season, and after a lights-out 2015 campaign in Atlanta (1.60 ERA, 9 saves), Vizcaino holds a 1.37 ERA again this year. In the same breath, high-end relief pitchers are always overvalued on the open market (see Kimbrel, Craig) and if John Coppolella and company could unearth a lucrative offer for Vizcaino, the team would be wise to consider it.
Rumblings around Teheran (who is linked to Boston in this piece) and Markakis (linked to Philadelphia) will persist until the trade deadline arrives, but Arodys Vizcaino might bring a huge return and there is at least one person who believes he could be extracted from Atlanta.