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The Atlanta Braves have some more moves to make if they want to win the NL East this year.
Though the Atlanta Braves made a series of excellent moves at the 2021 MLB trade deadline, they need to make a few more roster calibrations if they want to steal the NL East out from under the New York Mets.
Atlanta begins its three-game road series at the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday night 3.5 games back of the Mets in the NL East race. The Braves are a game back of the Philadelphia Phillies, who also decided they were very much alive in the divisional race this summer. Given that the Braves have not played their best baseball yet, there is reason to believe Atlanta can four-peat in 2021.
Here are three moves the Braves still need to make to rip the NL East away from the hated Mets.
Atlanta Braves: 3 moves to make to win the NL East for the fourth year in a row
3. Assimilate Eddie Rosario into the outfield rotation as soon as possible
Atlanta made four trades in July to improve its outfield, including dealing for Eddie Rosario with the Cleveland Indians. This was Rosario’s first year with Cleveland after having had great success against them playing for the AL Central rival Minnesota Twins for years. A down season for Cleveland and a nagging abdominal injury led to Rosario being expendable at the trade deadline.
Given that he is still on the 10-day IL, Rosario has yet to make his Braves debut. While he offers great power from the left side of the plate, where he really helps this team is with this slick glove in the outfield. He could be asked to play anywhere in the outfield defensively. We know that Joc Pederson will start in centerfield or right, but Rosario’s glove will be a welcomed addition as well.
The two other outfielders Atlanta dealt for in Adam Duvall and Jorge Soler are serviceable and sub-par on defense, respectively. Soler may have great power from the right side, but he cannot be a defensive liability in right. Duvall played a lot last year in left field for Atlanta, so he may stay there. But by adding Rosario into the rotation, Atlanta’s outfield gets better by raising the floor.
If Rosario can go yard regularly and make the occasional web gem, his addition will be massive.