Now that the non-waiver deadline has passed, we’re taking a look back at what each team was able to accomplish before 4 p.m. ET on July 31. Next up in our recap series, the Atlanta Braves.
Atlanta Braves (51-59), 15 GB in NL East, 11.5 GB in NL Wild Card
ACQUIRED: RHP Huascar Ynoa (from MIN)
TRADED: LHP Jaime Garcia (to MIN), C Anthony Recker (to MIN)
It was a relatively quiet month of July for GM John Coppolella and the Atlanta Braves. With few short-term assets to be moved, the Braves' only trade sent free-agent-to-be Jaime Garcia to the Twins for minor league right-hander Huascar Ynoa, only to see Garcia dealt to the Yankees a few days later following a collapse in Minnesota.
While the Braves were actively shopping major league pieces, the club's name has been consistently mentioned in trade discussions for controllable starting pitchers like the Cubs' Jose Quintana and the Yankees' Sonny Gray. Despite Atlanta's involvement in rumors for the two young starters, prospect packages including the Braves' no. 1 prospect outfielder Ronald Acuna made a buyer's move unaffordable.
The Braves opted to hold onto starter Jose Teheran, for he fits the exact mold the club is looking for: starting pitchers signed to a longterm, cost-controlled deal. The 26-year-old Teheran has had an underwhelming 2017, but is under team control in Atlanta through 2020 ($10.3 million annually from '18-'20) when the clubs expects to be contending again. Led by wave of MLB-ready talent including Acuna and infielder Ozhaino Albies, the Braves have the top farm system in the league and deemed moving Teheran unnecessary.
News of the Twins' pursuit of Garcia was one of the more bizarre storylines of this year's trade deadline, as the deal was reportedly completed on July 20th but was not made official until July 24th. During these four awkward days, Garcia managed to start a game for the Braves, and beat the Dodgers with seven innings of three-run ball. Oh, and he hit a grand slam in the same outing. Though the Braves eventually settled on Ynoa in return for the right-handed veteran, Atlanta initially wanted Twins' Tommy John-rehabber Nick Burdi but vetoed the decision due to injury concerns.
Ynoa, 19, has a 4.28 ERA across 33.2 innings this season in rookie ball, and is not ranked on the Braves' top 30 prospects according to MLB Pipeline. The Dominican native has shaky command to begin his pro career but has steadily improved his strikeout rate and allows home runs sparingly.
Atlanta already made one August trade, sending Sean Rodriguez back to the Pirates for infielder Connor Joe. The club could make some more moves, with short-term assets like Jim Johnson and R.A. Dickey among the options to be moved.
As their talent slowly seeps into the big league roster, the Braves hope to become a force to be reckoned with in the NL East and may do it sooner than expected; the club promoted Albies to the majors and Acuna to AAA and over the past month.
For a complete list of our trade deadline recaps, click here.