The Braves have once again found themselves in the middle of trade rumors, and this time, Julio Teheran is the center. However, Braves GM John Coppolella recently made comments that indicate that the organization is now focused on improving what is arguably the worst major league team in all of baseball right now (the Twins are the other team in the argument, as they currently have the same record as the Braves: 14-34).
At around 0:28 of this video from Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, Rosenthal states that Coppolella recently told him that the only way in which Teheran will be traded is if they receive a major league hitter "of comparable quality and age in return." Coppolella went further and stated that "the days of moving guys like Teheran for prospects are over," and that he'd have to receive an "overwhelming" offer in order to move Teheran for prospects.
While Coppolella did leave the door open for potential trade talks, you have to believe that both Teheran's performance this season and his team-friendly contract may have pushed him into Freddie Freeman's realm when it comes to trade talks. Teheran currently has a 2.57 ERA and a 3.48 FIP over 10 starts this season and has already matched last season in terms of fWAR (1.1), and he looks very much to be back to "normal" when compared to the down year he had in 2015. Combine that with the fact that next season's free agent pitching class appears to be pretty awful, and you can see the reasoning behind the Braves holding on to Teheran for as long as they want.
The big takeaway here is the fact that the Braves, at least publicly, appear to have moved on to another step of their rebuilding phase. Granted, they're still going to have some high draft picks to utilize both this year and next year and they're also going to be very aggressive on the international market, so it's not like they're going to leave their already-stacked minor league system alone. It just appears that they've decided to stop using their best players as assets to improve the minor league system and have decided to switch their focus to improving the major league team. At this point, they've stripped the cupboard bare when it comes to the major league squad, so there's nowhere to go but up in that regard.
If we see a player like Julio Teheran get traded, it'll probably be for much-needed offensive help or they found someone else in baseball who thought that the Diamondbacks got the better of the Shelby Miller trade and want to do business with the Braves. Either way, this may bring a bit of relief for the trade fatigue that parts of the fanbase may be experiencing right now. It'll also be interesting to see where the Braves go from here when it comes to building 2017's major league team.