Braves' Updated Trade Targets with 2022 MLB Deadline Approaching
The Atlanta Braves spent much of the first two months hovering around the .500 mark, but they ripped off a 14-game winning streak to begin the month of June and are again looking like legitimate contenders.
However, they were dealt a blow when All-Star second baseman Ozzie Albies fractured his left foot earlier in June, and he'll be out until at least mid-August after being placed on the 60-day injured list.
Veterans Orlando Arcia and Phil Gosselin are manning second base for the time being, but expect the team to kick the tires on potential upgrades at the Aug. 2 deadline.
Ahead, we've highlighted three players who could address that glaring area of need.
IF Cavan Biggio
Cavan Biggio hit .240/.368/.430 with a 116 OPS+ and a 16.1 percent walk rate during his first two seasons in the big leagues, racking up 5.0 WAR in 159 games.
However, he played just 79 games during an injury-plagued 2021 season and has found himself in more of a utility role this year, with Matt Chapman acquired to play third base and Santiago Espinal enjoying a solid season at second base.
The 27-year-old is hitting just .209 on the year, but he's batting .273/.420/.527 with nine extra-base hits in his last 70 plate appearances.
With club control through the 2025 season, he would be more than just a rental, and the contending Blue Jays would likely want MLB-ready talent in return.
IF Brandon Drury
A rental option might make more sense for the Braves given Albies' long-term place with the team, and Brandon Drury figures to be an in-demand rental bat in the midst of a career year with the Cincinnati Reds.T
The 29-year-old has a 128 OPS+ with 14 doubles, 15 home runs and 39 RBI in 262 plate appearances, and he has seen regular time at second base (20 games) and third base (42 games).
The Braves made a splash at the deadline last year by scooping up a number of rental players, and they hit on Jorge Soler, Eddie Rosario and Joc Pederson in the process. Drury would be a similar addition to this year's roster.
He is also making just $700,000 on a one-year deal this year, making him an easy addition to any team's payroll.
IF Jose Iglesias
Jose Iglesias has played shortstop throughout his MLB career, but he did spend some time at second base last year when the Boston Red Sox signed him on Sept. 3, three days after he was released by the Los Angeles Angels.
The 32-year-old hit .356/.406/.508 in 64 plate appearances after joining the Red Sox while posting solid defensive metrics at second base, and he could fill a similar void in Atlanta.
After signing a one-year, $5 million deal with the Colorado Rockies during the offseason, he's hitting .297 with a .345 on-base percentage and 15 doubles in 61 games, and flipping him at the deadline makes sense for a Rockies team quickly falling out of the NL West race.
The Braves would get a low-cost replacement for a minimal prospect return, and the Rockies could hand the starting shortstop job over to speedy Garrett Hampson.
All stats courtesy of Baseball Reference and accurate through Tuesday's games.