Shelby Miller has a lot of value. Forget about his record last year. Anyone who knows baseball knows Miller pitched well in his first season in Atlanta.
But with Miller having three years of control remaining, there will be teams that will see Miller as having tremendous value. It will be teams that see what they can pay Miller for the next three years compared to what they may have to pay a free agent currently on the market.
Miller may get a $20 million dollars or more a year in a deal - one day. But for the next several years, he will be very affordable.
So that's why reports have surfaced the Braves will have as many as 20 teams talk with them about Miller. With the Winter Meetings starting next week, the discussions could get serious.
Expect the Braves to seek a bat and a young pitching prospect back in the deal. It likely won't be a prospects-only return, as the Braves would love to use Miller's value to get a significant offensive player in return. But don't forget about the pitching prospect. That's been the staple of Atlanta's trades for the last year, and it's unlikely that will stop.
Several teams have already been mentioned: Arizona, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco and the New York Yankees. But the number of teams expected to be interested is close to 20, so the Braves can play this to the end.
When you have a pitcher in that much demand, and considering where the Braves are in their rebuilding process, you have to listen. The Braves will do just that.
Rumors had the Braves and Diamondbacks talking about a Miller-for-A.J. Pollock swap. Pollock broke out last season with a .367 OBP, 20 HR, 76 RBI and 39 stolen bases. Like Miller, Pollock has three years left before free agency.
In the last few days a Miller-for-Joc Pederson rumor has surfaced. Would the Dodgers consider trading Pederson, who was an All-Star in his rookie season in 2015? Pederson strikes out a lot, but he showed great potential in his first season. The Dodgers also have a long list of pitching prospects who might interest the Braves.
The rumors have had Atlanta linked with Joe Panik or Matt Duffy in talks with the Giants. Panik could replace Jace Peterson at second base, while Duffy could take over a third base. The Giants also have several solid young arms, like Tyler Beede and Phil Bickford.
And would the Yankees trade Brett Gardner in a deal for Miller? The Yankees also have a tremendous group of pitching prospects that would likely interest the Braves.
So this is definitely something to watch. The Braves don't want to trade Miller, as they see him as a veteran that can lead the rotation. But considering the position they are in - still rebuilding - they'd be nuts not to anayze the offers on the table for Miller in the next several weeks.
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