Could the Braves and White Sox be talking?
Nick Cafardo, perhaps the best national baseball writer around, had a quick blurb Sunday in his Boston Globe baseball column:
Brandon Beachy, RHP, Braves - His success (20 strikeouts, two earned runs in his last 12 innings) since returning from the disabled list may accelerate a possible deal to improve the Braves' offense. Whether Beachy would be trade bait is anyone's guess, but his emergence could make a veteran such as Derek Lowe available. The White Sox recently sent Dave Yokum, their fine assistant general manager/pro scout, to watch Beachy and Braves' pitching, so we'll see if there's any match, and whether the White Sox would ever consider dealing Carlos Quentin.
The odd part of the story is Chicago already has six starting pitchers: Mark Buehrle, Gavin Floyd, Philip Humber, Edwin Jackson, John Danks and Jake Peavy.
Perhaps Chicago is thinking about getting a replacement for Buehrle, who can become a free agent at the end of the year. Lowe is under contract through the end of next season at $15 million.
But there is no doubt Quentin has been a player on Atlanta's radar for some time. They had interest in him a year ago. He fits what they have searched for in an outfielder: right-handed power hitter who can play left field.
Quentin has averaged 27.6 home runs in the last three seasons. This year he has 17 home runs in 79 games and 281 at bats. So he's on pace to surpass 30 home runs for the second time in his career.
Quentin is under contract through the 2012 season. He's making $5.05 million this season and will be eligible for arbitration again this winter.
If Lowe were traded for Quentin, the Braves would save almost $10 million per season. Beachy obviously is very cheap, being in his rookie season. So it might be tougher for the Braves to include Beachy in such a deal for someone that makes a significant salary.
Bill Shanks hosts The Bill Shanks Show on WPLA Fox Sports 1670 in Macon, GA and WCOH Fox Sports 1400 in Newnan, GA. Shanks is a columnist for The Macon Telegraph. Email Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/billshanks.
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