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Braves drawing trade interest on Jason Heyward, Justin Upton, Evan Gattis

Atlanta may be inclined to deal one of their core position players this offseason.


The Atlanta Braves will be facing an interesting decision this winter, as they are reportedly "fielding a lot of trade interest" in outfielders Justin Upton and Jason Heyward, as well as catcher Evan Gattisaccording to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, who adds that the Braves aren't shopping the players, but are "open to listening to inquiries."

Heyman speculates that the Seattle Mariners and Boston Red Sox could be among the clubs interested in the trio, particularly Gattis and Upton, who fit their needs of a power-hitting bat.

Yesterday, reports indicated that the Braves were pushing hard to deal Gattis, but that may no longer be the case, as general manager John Hart now says that the club would prefer to hold onto him despite the presence of prospect Christian Bethancourt, who is considered to be a far superior defensive option to Gattis. Of course, Gattis is under club control for four more years and has already shown an aptitude for demolishing big league pitching with a 117 career OPS+. This past season, he hit .263/.316/.493 with 22 home runs, a 125 wRC+, and 2.2 WAR in 108 games.

While Gattis is controllable for the time being, both Upton and Heyward are eligible for free agency next offseason, and are likely in line for monster paydays. The Braves will likely not be able to keep both Upton and Heyward long-term, so it makes sense for them to deal one now and recoup some value while they still can. Both players are coming off excellent seasons in which they combined for 9.6 WAR.