Why Braves Need to Acquire Current White Sox Outfielder at the Trade Deadline

It’s been a challenging few weeks for the Atlanta Braves, who have now dropped four straight, their season’s longest losing streak. The offense has gone ice cold and it has become clear that at least one position group needs a major upgrade.

The Braves were shut out Tuesday by the Baltimore Orioles. It was the second time they were shut out in six games after going the previous 181 without a zero on the scoreboard. They even stranded Michael Harris II on third base with no outs in the first inning, becoming the first team since the Los Angeles Angels in August 2021 to be shut out after a lead-off triple.

Many of the Braves’ most important offensive contributors have struggled to pick up the slack after Ronald Acuña Jr. went down for the season, namely Austin Riley, Matt Olson, and Ozzie Albies. But there’s also a perfect trade fit on the Chicago White Sox that could solve some of Atlanta’s woes, according to David O’Brien of The Athletic. 

In his Wednesday Braves trade deadline preview, O’Brien discussed a trio of players the White Sox could be moving, center fielder Luis Robert Jr., DH Eloy Jímenez, and corner outfielder Tommy Pham. And though Robert is the biggest name on the list, O’Brien believes Pham makes the most sense for the Braves and their current situation.

Because Robert is a center fielder with two remaining years of control after 2024, O’Brien doesn’t believe the star slugger is a fit with the Braves, given that Harris has a long-term deal that gives Atlanta the right to keep him through 2032. 

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Pham, meanwhile, is a rental, and O’Brien notes that he is the type of “proven big-game performer with an expiring contract” that has appealed to general manager Alex Anthopoulos in the past. Most notably, Atlanta added four veteran outfielders at the trade deadline in 2021 to spark a World Series run. 

Pham also owns a career .313 batting average and .846 in the postseason. He brings an edge to the game that is famous among former teammates and according to O’Brien, “the Braves could use (that) right about now.” Pham is expected back soon from the 10-day injured list with a sprained ankle.

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