The Atlanta Braves have plenty of intriguing assets if they are sellers at the trade deadline.
Atlanta has not been above .500 at any point this season. The three-time reigning NL East champions are on the precipice of missing out on the postseason entirely. While they have a very winnable stretch of games vs. the Miami Marlins and the Pittsburgh Pirates over the next two weeks, a bad start to July could have Atlanta potentially moving off some of its star performers.
Who could be dealt by the Braves at the trade deadline if the team is forced into sell mode?
Atlanta Braves: 3 most valuable trade assets heading into the July deadline
C Atlanta Braves
William Contreras may have made Travis d’Arnaud somewhat expendable
Travis d’Arnaud had his best season in the big leagues last year. In his first year with the Braves, d’Arnaud slashed .321/.386/.533 in 44 games to take home the NL Silver Slugger at catcher. Unfortunately, d’Arnaud finds himself on the 60-day IL with a busted thumb suffered at the tail-end of April. The Braves offense has taken a hit with him out of the lineup the last two months.
Though William Contreras has done a fine job filling in for him, d’Arnaud should be able to return to the starting lineup in the coming weeks for a potential postseason run wherever he goes. Given that he is a pending free agent, there are no guarantees he will be back in Atlanta uniform for a third year in a row. The Braves may look to go with the cheaper option in Contreras next season.
Had d’Arnaud have been healthy and he played up to his potential, he would have been a huge trade asset for the Braves. While he does offer some value, it is nowhere near as much as it would be in a normal year for him. Atlanta should hope he can return to form for the Braves in July or August, but if the right offer manifests, the Braves may need to seriously look at trading him.
D’Arnaud should help one team in the second half of the season, the Braves or somebody else.