Jul 3, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price (14) talks to fans before a game against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Braves: What Is The Price For David Price?

April 2, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price (14) throws a pitch during the third inning against the Baltimore Orioles during opening day at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

 

An “Ace” – something every team wants, most teams don’t have, and a thing the Atlanta Braves are looking for.

This is a need it looks like Frank Wren is exploring.  Though not much in the tank, it won’t hurt to shop around.  The Braves have many young pitchers but are any of these number 1 guys?

During an interview with David O’Brien, Braves GM gives his take on if they could have used an ace down the stretch…

“Yeah I just think that, unfortunately, aces or top-of-the-rotation starting pitching is the most rare commodity, whether it’s the trade market or free agent market. And you look at this year’s free agent market, there really isn’t one of those guys in the free agent market. And whether there’s going to be one in the trade market, I don’t know. But we recognize that that’s an area of need and whether we can acquire that, prior to our young guys arriving here, I’m not sure because it’s very difficult to acquire.”

Talks have been floating around about the possibility of bringing in David Price to Atlanta – these talks have came, gone, shown up, left, surfaced again, and now just hovering.  If the rumors swirling around and no one knows whats going on, I reached out to our friends at Rays Colored Glasses to find out their take on this situation and just what it may take to acquire Mr. Price.

 

Tampa Bay has a history of trading their stars away to get quality players before they become free agents.  And David Price looks to be next on the list…who’s behind this theory and are you a fan of this system?

The Rays are always going to be grouped together with the small market mind-set that we all see year after year: a star gets too expensive and they trade him. At the end of the day, there is no argument that they do exactly that. But where the Rays differ from everyone else is their motivation to get those deals done.

 

The David Price rumors have been swirling around the web for a couple weeks now but the Rays system seems to keep quiet about this.  What is your take on this?  Will Price resign or will the Rays try to trade him?

April 2, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price (14) reacts after he gave up a 2-run home run first inning against the Baltimore Orioles during opening day at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

April 2, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher David Price (14) reacts after he gave up a 2-run home run first inning against the Baltimore Orioles during opening day at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Rays should have traded David Price last offseason. They should have traded Carl Crawford and B.J. Upton before they hit free agency. Why didn’t they? Because their focus is never on rebuilding and always on making their present team as good as possible within their budget. The Rays don’t trade players because they can’t afford them, they trade them because they believe their value in a trade is worth more than what they provide their team.

You don’t trade with the Rays–you blow them away. You dangle your Wil Myers or Chris Archer and then brace yourself when the Rays ask for more. Other teams trade players because of time (years left under team control) and money. The Rays trade players purely based on value. If an overwhelming offer does not come along for David Price, the Rays will have no issues paying $13 million next year to have their ace for one more season. The thing about all these blockbuster deals is that a star departs, but the return always makes Rays fans happy–and not just for the future, but the present as well. I not only understand why the Rays do it, but I can’t get enough of it.

 

Looking at the Atlanta Braves system, we have a plethora of young pitchers who could turn out to be stars at the MLB level and some MLB ready now.  What do you think it will take to acquire David Price?  Starting pitching, relief pitchers, infielders, outfielders, catchers…..And, prospects, MLB players or MLB ready players?

Between the Matt Garza and James Shields trade, we have a pretty good idea of what the Rays will be going for. They want two premium prospects without a doubt, and from there they will ask for some combination of lottery ticket prospect and big league-ready backups. Here’s two potential trades I would throw out there.

1)  Tampa Bay Rays trade LHP David Price to the Atlanta Braves for RHP Julio Teheran, C Christian Bethancourt, RHP Cory Rasmus, and SS Jose Peraza.

2)  Tampa Bay Rays trade LHP David Price and UTIL Sean Rodriguez to the Atlanta Braves for RHP J.R. Graham, C Christian Bethancourt, 2B Tommy La Stella, MI Tyler Pastornicky, and SS Jose Peraza.

 

If the Braves don’t want to totally deplete their system, the Rays could be satisfied by getting simply one of the Braves’ young starters along with Bethancourt. Trading away Bethancourt may create a little pause for Braves fans with Brian McCann a free agent, but given the Rays’ need at the catcher position, he would be a shoe-in for the deal. After Bethancourt, would the Braves rather deal a pitcher like Teheran or deal a top prospect like Graham and also plenty more?

The first trade has the Braves giving up Teheran, Bethancourt, a replaceable reliever in Rasmus, and a lower-level prospect in Peraza. In the second trade, meanwhile, the Braves keep their actual big league arms but have to give up another good prospect in La Stella along with a depth piece in Pastornicky in return–although they would also get a pretty decent player in Rodriguez as a throw-in. (The Rays showed with Wade Davis and current Brave Elliot Johnson in the Wil Myers trade that they are willing to give up solid players to make these big trades happen.)

Either of those trades would be hard to stomach from a Braves standpoint…and would that even be enough with so many teams set to submit competitive offers? The cost of acquiring Price is significant, and even if the Braves do get him, are they willing to pay the necessary cost to extend him?  The Braves have so much young pitching, and it may be best for them to stick with what they have rather than deplete their system to deal for Price.

Tags: Atlanta Braves FanSided

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