When examining teams that could make some sense with regards to need as well as the necessary bats to make a deal feasible, I considered the Red Sox and Rangers to be the most realistic possibilities. However, teams like the Cubs, Astros, and Pirates all have the prospects/young major leaguers to potentially make a Teheran deal happen. But the question posed in this article is not who could make the best offer, but whether or not the Braves would be smart to deal Teheran.
The answer is that a Teheran deal would be smart for the Braves if, and only if, they are blown away by an offer. This may seem like somewhat of a cop-out on my part, but it is difficult to rationalize a deal otherwise. If the Braves were offered a deal that could exceed the return they received for Shelby Miller, then a deal would make sense. Aside from a haul of that magnitude, the Braves would be smart to hold onto Teheran. His contract, age, effectiveness, and durability are all too valuable to be moved for anything less than a huge package of players. Pitching has become so expensive that a young ace of Teheran’s caliber could provide as much excess value over the next four years as anyone in baseball, making him a perfect building block for a team looking to compete within the next two years.
It is hard not to get excited when thumbing through the prospect lists of other teams and imagining Braves lineups that include such high-upside bats, but that does not mean that a Teheran deal is the prudent move. Having a reliable number one starter is possibly the most valuable asset in the game right now, and though a power bat would be a welcome addition in Atlanta, the cost of losing an ace is just too high. Teheran is likely to be the best arm available this summer, and that is mostly because teams are very wary of trading young starters of Teheran’s caliber. The right-hander is posting a career-best season, and at just 25 he is capable of building upon it even further, making the prospect of trading him away that much more unsettling. The Braves unquestionably need bats, but right now I think holding onto Julio Teheran is of much greater importance.