John Coppolella’s 14-month trading frenzy hit the reset button on the Atlanta Braves’ future.
From the Jason Heyward trade that netted the team Shelby Miller and Tyrell Jenkins to the Miller trade that capped the franchise’s 2015 reshuffling with an exclamation point, the front office acquired 31 prospects, two competitive balance draft picks, a 25-year-old outfielder with All-Star potential and five years of club control, one year of veteran shortstop Erick Aybar and promising reliever Paco Rodriguez. There were poor acquisitions (Trevor Cahill) and trade throw-ins (Bronson Arroyo, Carlos Quentin) along the way, and a few productive options have already been flipped (Miller, Cameron Maybin, Juan Uribe), but to date Coppolella’s trade-centric plan is on track.
Of course, it took trading away most of the team’s top players to accomplish the early portion of Atlanta’s mission, but acquiring the likes of top prospects Dansby Swanson, Aaron Blair, Sean Newcomb, Touki Toussaint, Max Fried and Mallex Smith required some sacrifices.
In our third edition of our Braves prospect composite rankings, there’s a clear snapshot of just what those difficult moves yielded. First, a quick refresher.
FOX Sports South has put together a composite top-20 ranking for the Braves’ 2016 top prospects to help balance out the various projections. Using available prospect lists from 10 sources, players were awarded points for top-20 rankings. (For example, a No. 1 ranking earned a player 20 points, a No. 2 ranking earned 19 points, No. 3 earned 18 points, etc. The highest-possible score was 200.) The 10 lists are as follows: