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The Braves dropped the final two games, but finished a tough road trip 4-2.
The Braves made a valiant effort to come back, but fell just short as the tying run was stranded on third base in the ninth inning. Josh Donaldson homered and drove in four runs, which was the extent of the Atlanta offense in this game. Dallas Keuchel was not at his best, but did pitch into the sixth inning having allowed four earned runs.
Boyd brings the ability to miss bats to an Atlanta starting rotation that is lacking in that particular area. As Ivan noted in the Bumgarner piece, the Braves do not “need” anything, but could benefit from adding another arm. In addition to his abilities, Boyd’s dexterity could provide an advantage against a team like the Dodgers, who feature multiple potent left-handed bats. Aside from those fringe benefits, the Braves would simply benefit from having Boyd as a fixture in the rotation for the next three-plus seasons assuming he replicates his production from the first-half of this season.
Braves Trade Deadline Targets: Kirby Yates
The Braves’ bullpen ranks 22nd in fWAR. While that’s hardly an impetus for acquiring Yates specifically, the Braves probably won’t want to rest on their biggest-ERA-FIP-gap-for-a-bullpen-in-the-majors-which-is-twice-as-big-as-the-next-biggest-gap laurels for too long. On top of that, the Braves have been pretty good at handling lefties as a relief corps, but have a bottom-six FIP against righties for their bullpen (only one contender, the Nationals, is worse in this regard). Yates would help this both innately and by freeing up Luke Jackson to work more as a matchup guy (though he hasn’t really exhibited platoon splits much this year given that his breaking pitches are so vertical).
The Yankees closer addressed reports that he intends to opt out at season’s end.