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Braves among finalists for Dylan Cease, per report

As talks intensify, the White Sox ace could even be dealt before the Winter Meetings.

Chicago White Sox v Atlanta Braves Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images


With the Winter Meetings just a few days away and many teams ready to start taking care of their major offseason needs, the rumor mill is starting to churn as it routinely does this time of year.

After Sonny Gray signed with the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday, the most obvious starting pitching targets for the Braves (Gray and Aaron Nola) in free agency were off the market. As a result, the likelihood of the Braves potentially pivoting to the trade market logically increased. And like clockwork, the Braves were connected to trade talks with the White Sox on ace Dylan Cease, along many other teams in baseball.

As previously mentioned, the interest for the Braves in Cease is obvious. He comes with two years of control, has shown ace level potential in the past, and offers good durability. Furthermore, being from Georgia, he shares traits with past trade targets of Alex Anthopoulos, players with connections to Atlanta who the Braves could potentially extend for the long term once they are acquired.

However, with Cease, there are a couple of notable truths they may make an acquisition and extension easier said than done. For one, as a Scott Boras client, an extension could be less likely than it would be with other players. And with Cease being affordable and attractive in terms of money and talent, many teams are likely showing interest in the right-hander. As a result, Atlanta will likely have to part with a significant trade package that likely will need to include at least one of their prized pitching prospects, AJ Smith-Shawver or Hurston Waldrep.

Of course, the above information is mostly general in nature, so the information should be kept in context. The extent at which talks have occurred or if names have even been exchanged remains an unknown. It is notable that talks could have been going on for a bit of time since the Braves and White Sox recently completed the six player trade with Aaron Bummer coming to Atlanta and Michael Soroka heading to Chicago.

There also is the reality that Alex Anthopoulos typically makes moves that few expect, though a few of his major moves have been reported on before being completed in recent years. While few details are known about the Braves true chances to land Cease, it is evident Atlanta is working to make a major addition to their pitching staff in some form or fashion.

And if talks are intensifying to the point that a deal could be done before Sunday’s Winter Meetings, we could have our answers much sooner than later.

Buckle Up and enjoy.

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