Atlanta Braves Have Nearly all Pieces they Need for Stretch Run

By David Miller
Freddie Freeman
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

To get a good idea for how well the Atlanta Braves roster is set for the stretch run, do not look at the comments on the official site. Whatever you do, don’t go there. Outside of that little section of people, no offense by the way, the Braves roster is pretty well set as it is right now for the run towards the postseason. They, like nearly everyone feel like they could use one more reliever for the pennant race but offensively they are fine and their pitching is almost fine.

There are two issues for me with the Braves. The first one is that they probably need another reliever for the stretch run. The issue with that is that it might be better to get someone from the minor leagues that have a fresh arm instead of trading for someone that has been a workhorse all season long for another major league team. Anyone with lots of innings might not work well for the role I am talking about which is eating innings in extra inning games and such as that. The rest of the bullpen is set I think though they could grab one good reliever in a trade but I hope they don’t give up good prospects for them.

After that the only problem is the starting rotation. In large part the starting five is fine but the problem comes in a week or so. Unless they want to become a starting six, which the team has said they are not willing to do, someone has to go somewhere when Brandon Beachey comes back from the disabled list. He is having a pain free time right now during his rehab starts and seems to finally be fully recovered. In my opinion Paul Maholm might be the guy that could most easily be moved.

Offensively the Braves are fine. And yes, that includes B.J. Upton. Very soon they will get two great bench players back in Evan Gattis and Jordan Schafer. Those guys can fill in, give everyone else a breather or come off the bench at the perfect time when they are needed and boy oh boy does it make a difference for them to be available. They are not a perfect team but they are better than last year and the year before. I think they are as good as they will be for the run for the pennant and they probably will win it.

David Miller is a Senior Writer for Follow him on Twitter @davidmillerrant, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google+.

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