Injury-plagued Braves do not consider Pence a priority
The Braves have placed two centerfielders — Jordan Schafer and Nate McLouth — and All-Star catcher Brian McCann on the disabled list this week. But with this year’s Trade Deadline just 48 hours away, Braves general manager Frank Wren said his focus has not changed.
After McLouth was disabled with a lower abdominal strain Friday afternoon, the Braves promoted Jose Constanza from Triple-A Gwinnett, put him on their 40-man roster and then put him in the leadoff spot for Friday night’s game against the Marlins.
“We’ve been looking for an outfielder and we’re still looking for an outfielder,” Wren said. “It really doesn’t change anything. We’re going to be thin for a while until some of these guys come back from injury. We know that and it really doesn’t change anything.”
While there has been speculation the Braves and Phillies have been in a bidding war for Astros’ outfielder Hunter Pence, a Major League source said Friday that the Braves have not considered Pence to be a priority.
The Braves did inquire about Pence and also to see if the White Sox were interested in trading Carlos Quentin. But it seems they are more likely to acquire Rays’ outfielder B.J. Upton or Padres’ outfielder Ryan Ludwick before Sunday’s 4 p.m. ET deadline arrives.
Upton could serve as the club’s leadoff hitter and starting centerfielder. But even with Schafer and McLouth sidelined, they may still target Ludwick, who would primarily play the corner outfield positions. But he is athletic enough to play center field if necessary. – Mark Bowman