Atlanta Braves: With Carlos Beltran Gone to Giants, What Moves Could Braves Make

Orly Rios Jr.Analyst IIJuly 27, 2011

Atlanta is ranked 28 out of 30 in team batting average in the league.
Atlanta is ranked 28 out of 30 in team batting average in the league.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Now that the Carlos Beltran saga is over, the real fun begins.

For the Atlanta Braves, necessity may be a more appropriate word.

On Tuesday, Atlanta received news that their best and most consistent player, catcher Brian McCann, will end up spending a stint on the 15-day disabled list due to a strained left oblique.

The injury to McCann comes just days after the Braves activated third baseman Chipper Jones from the 15-day DL.

And just like that, the need to add another bat to the lineup has suddenly become more crucial if Atlanta hopes to make a second straight trip to the playoffs.

Entering Wednesday's game against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Atlanta was ranked 28th in the league in batting average at just .239. For all the Moneyball fans out there, the Braves are the fifth-worst team in on-base percentage.

Jason Heyward is knee deep in a sophomore slump, hitting just .222 on the season, 55 points below his rookie average. Dan Uggla, Atlanta's big free-agent splash during the offseason, is hitting just .199.

Of the eight Braves who have at least 250 at-bats on the season, only McCann and rookie Freddie Freeman are hitting over .275.

With the trade deadline just three days away, the Braves need offense, and they need it fast.

Fox Sports baseball writer Ken Rosenthal recently reported that Atlanta is still considering making an offer to the Houston Astros for Hunter Pence as well as Ryan Ludwick of the San Diego Padres.

The Chicago White Sox have started checking out Atlanta's farm system in case the Braves suddenly become interested in Carlos Quentin.

Another possible name mentioned, though not recently, has been Oakland A's outfielder Josh Willingham, who Atlanta was in talks during last year's trade-deadline talks.