The Braves aren’t done looking for a controllable starter after missing on Jose Quintana, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports (links to Twitter). Atlanta pushed hard for the southpaw, per the report, with the team dangling Ozzie Albies as a headliner — though Passan’s source makes clear that talks never reached an advanced stage. It’s interesting to hear that Albies was offered up, but that was surely a prerequisite to get in the door on Quintana. Whether the intriguing young middle infielder could also be on the block in trade concepts involving other pitchers isn’t clear, but it seems that the Braves are still looking to be aggressive in adding arms for 2018 and beyond.
Here’s more from the NL East:
- Mets GM Sandy Alderson acknowledged that his organization will remain in a selling position unless things go “exceedingly well” before the deadline, as Marc Carig of Newsday writes. As the team sits eight games under .500, reaching a realistic position of contention would likely require a prolonged winning streak combined with stumbles from one or more front-running teams. Alderson reiterated that the club will not be looking to do more than cash in some expiring veterans, saying that a trade involving a core veteran would be “exceedingly unlikely.” Alderson also addressed some of his broader roster-building philosophies, including the relative value of defense in player evaluation, which you can read about at the above link.
- It seems that righty Edinson Volquez may not be so quick to return to the Marlins rotation as had been hoped. As Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports on Twitter, MRI results on the veteran’s balky left knee showed patellar tendinitis. Skipper Don Mattingly suggested that it doesn’t look to be a significant long-term problem, but Volquez also won’t return from the DL on Sunday. There hasn’t been much suggestion that he’s likely to factor as a trade piece, though the injury further clouds that possibility. Given his hefty salary for 2018 ($13MM), Volquez could also certainly be moved in August.
- One Marlins player who very clearly is in demand is right-handed reliever David Phelps, as Spencer also reports. He’s “drawing far more interest” than is closer A.J. Ramos, per the report, with about ten teams inquiring on the former and only two or three asking about the latter. It sounds as if both have a good chance of changing hands, ultimately, but it’s not all that surprising to hear that the steady Phelps is in greater demand. Indeed, he could even be seen as a possible rotation candidate for 2018 by some organizations that would be interested in adding him to their pen down the stretch.
- Braves righty Arodys Vizcaino could well factor in trade talks as well. He’s throwing off a mound today and seemingly won’t be far off from a return, per David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via Twitter). It had been a bit unclear just when he’d return, but it seems as if the talented — if somewhat enigmatic — reliever ought to have plenty of time to display his form for possible suitors. Veteran right-hander Jason Motte, though, may be headed in the other direction. MLB.com’s Mark Bowman tweets that Motte is heading to the DL with a back strain. He may have held some interest to contenders, though his peripherals lagged his results in Atlanta (and the ERA had begun to creep northward anyway).