Why Atlanta Braves biggest offseason moves have yet to come

The Atlanta Braves have been busy already this offseason with several transactions, but the biggest moves have yet to come.

Alex Anthopoulos and the Atlanta Braves have set the pace for this offseason by taking the best free agent reliever on the market and the second-best free agent catcher.

But there is reason to believe that the biggest moves from the Braves this offseason are yet to come.

Going into the offseason the biggest priorities for Atlanta where finding a big bat to replace Josh Donaldson in the lineup and a top of the rotation starter to pair with Mike Soroka.

To this point, those two areas still need to be addressed.

And while the Will Smith and Travis d’Arnaud signings were fun and somewhat unexpected, they’re nothing in comparison to what is left in store for us this offseason.

But AA had to get those moves out of the way so that he could go into December and into the Winter Meetings with a gameplan of what he has to work with.

We don’t know what the budget for Atlanta will look like going into 2020, but early indications are that it could be anywhere from $130-$150 million.

With the 2020 payroll already around $120 million, it will be interesting to see how aggressive AA is in the free agent market.

Of course, he could trade away a few expendable players to make more room for bigger moves.

But either way, he can’t go into next season without at least addressing those two areas (3B and SP), so we know bigger moves are coming.

With the Winter Meetings set to begin next week, expect the rumor mill to pick up a bit. AA is a very secretive GM, so we may not get much in terms of Braves rumors, but we’ll know where the Braves stand based on rumors surrounding particular players.

And another reason AA took care of bullpen and catcher early is that he knew it would take the third base and starting pitching markets a while to develop.

Nothing is really going to happen with the second-tier players at those positions (which is where I think the Braves will get involved) until the top tier is signed.

Keep an eye on Anthony Rendon, Gerrit Cole, and Stephen Strasburg during the Winter Meetings. As those players come off the board, or their prices go beyond what most teams are comfortable with, then we’ll start to see more action on the Braves targets like Josh Donaldson and Madison Bumgarner.

But again, one thing is for sure, there are plenty of more fireworks coming from Alex Anthopoulos and the Atlanta Braves this offseason … there have to be.