Should the Braves trade Ozzie Albies?

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL - MARCH 16: Stephen Piscotty
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL - MARCH 16: Stephen Piscotty /

For the past two years, one prospect has been the topic of conversation around Braves country. It seems that the hype surrounding Ozzie Albies has been going on for a while.

Atlanta Braves fans have been patiently waiting for the debut of the top prospect. The Braves top prospect has ascended rapidly through the system. He is now at Triple-A  Gwinnett at only 20 years old.

During a rebuild, it is easy for fans to fall in love with prospects. It is safe to say that Albies has become one of these loveable prospects. Fans have kept up with him since he broke out with Single-A Rome in 2015.  To say that some fans have come attached is an understatement. Even with the success of Brandon Phillips this season, fans want to see Albies called up. They are willing to see the hometown player, in Phillips, traded, just to see the top prospect debut.

Fast forward to July 2017, and the Braves are on the brink of contending for a playoff spot. They are 9 games out of the NL East and 7 games out for the WIld Card. Hitting has been the strong suit for the Braves this year, with pitching lacking behind. This is where Ozzie Albies comes in. THe emergence of Johan Camargo has caught the attention of the front office. There is also utility man Sean Rodriguez that will be activated in the next week or so. These two moves have made the possibility of trading Albies a little easier to understand. Now the front office will not just give him up for anyone and this is not to suggest that he is being dangled in every trade.

Now the question remains if the Braves were going to trade Albies, what frontline starter would the Braves acquire. The Braves did start a package for Jose Quintana with Ozzie Albies. The Braves have also been linked to Rays pitcher Chris Archer and A’s pitcher Sonny Gray. The Rays are in a pennant race themselves, so the likelihood  Archer is traded seems low. This brings us to Sonny Gray. Gray has struggled last year and this year, but a change of scenery could get him back to his old form.

So is Albies worth this? A top prospect in all of baseball, who could be the future of the Atlanta Braves is hard to part with. It would be hard for many fans to see the Braves trade Albies, especially with the crop of pitching prospects that Braves have accumulated. The Braves could keep Albies and plug him in at second and have a middle infield duo that would have other teams jealous for years. They could rely on their homegrown pitching talent to develop and have a star studded rotation that would be very inexpensive.

In my opinion, they should hold on to Albies. While not all prospects pan out and some should be traded, Albies is a keeper. It is too early to sell the farm and try to contend now. THe BRaves are in a great position right now and should be able to contend in 2018. The next Braves playoff team should have Ozzie Albies manning second base.