Alright, don’t kill me for it, but I did say it. The Atlanta Braves simply don’t need David Price. Before I get into it, let me get this straight: I’d kill to see Price take the mound every five games for the Braves, whether it was just this season, or for a long time. Would he be a welcome sight? Yes! With Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Gavin Floyd all going down due to elbow injuries, it’d be great to have a pitcher like Price, but need? Let’s not go that far.
However, there is no way that the Braves would be willing, or could afford, to pay him for any time that would be longer than the rest of this season. So, if the team were to trade for Price, the team would definitely lose at least one, if not two or three, of their top-notch prospects for a player that would most definitely only be in Atlanta for part of one season. Honestly, I don’t see GM Frank Wren giving up players that could help the team’s future, like Christian Bethancourt, in order to make a run in the 2014 season.
Also, to this point in the season, if Price came to the Braves, he wouldn’t even be the best pitcher this season on the staff. So far, Julio Teheran has been a “better” pitcher, giving up over 20 less hits, and holding an ERA that is 1.22 runs below the Tampa Bay Rays‘ ace. Granted, Price is historically one of the best pitchers in the AL, but while he would probably command $20-plus million after the 2014 season, Teheran will make a max of $12 million during his long-term contract with the Braves. If the team were to pick him up this season, they’d most likely be expected to pay half, if not the entirety, of his contract, which would make the payroll a little bit too high for the owners.
Finally, the starting rotation isn’t where the largest need for the team is. Honestly, there are bullpen spots that need to be tightened down, and even though it is unrealistic, the lineup could use a bat in there somewhere. Now, I don’t know all the answers, so I can’t say who they need to go out there and get, but I just don’t see Price coming to Atlanta for part of the team’s future plans when there are greater needs around the team.