In 'strange market,' early move helps Braves
After dealing for lefty Downs on Monday, club quiet as Deadline passes
ATLANTA -- When Wednesday afternoon's non-waiver Trade Deadline passed, Braves general manager Frank Wren felt good about already addressing his club's primary need despite working within the constraints of this year's thin market.
"It was a strange market in that there was not the same quantity that you were used to looking at and the same number of sellers you're used to looking at," Wren said. "It reduced the number of conversations. We had a handful of conversations today, but nothing that really had any traction."
With Monday's acquisition of left-handed reliever Scott Downs, Wren added quality depth to an already strong bullpen. Over the next few weeks, he will scour the waiver wire in attempt to land a backup infielder -- preferably one who bats from the left side of the plate.
But as things stand, Wren has plenty of reason to be confident about his club, which entered Wednesday's game against the Rockies with a five-game winning streak and a comfortable 10 1/2-game lead in the National League East.
"I think we'll probably have some more activity," Wren said. "But all in all, we're pretty happy. The club is playing as well as it has all year long. So there's a lot of positives."
Over the next few weeks, Wren will continue to evaluate his starting rotation, which welcomed Brandon Beachy back this week, and his offense, which will be impacted when B.J. Upton and Jordan Schafer make their expected returns from the disabled list within the next week.
While the Braves would like to add a backup infielder with more offensive potential than Paul Janish, this appears to be more of a wish than a need.
Any player acquired during the month of August must first be placed on the waiver wire by their current club. The player can be traded to the first club that claims him, or he can be traded anywhere if he passes through the waiver wire process unclaimed.
"As we get a little closer to the waiver deadline and the postseason deadline, we'll have a better sense of our club," said Wren. "That's the most important thing. It really doesn't matter what everybody else is doing. It's important to know what we have and what we need. We're not quite there yet."
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. Eric Single is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.