The Atlanta Braves are clearly going to attempt to improve the rotation this offseason. Already the team has been tied to Aaron Nola and has been a speculated landing spot for Sonny Gray. Atlanta needs help after their first two starters if they are going to make another World Series run and that help could come outside of free agency.
Looking at the potential fits in free agency, Gray and Nola are truly the only two impact names that stand out. After that, the potential fits come with a number of clear red flags. Obviously, this isn't the only way the Braves could attack the rotation with a number of top starters speculated to be on the move.
For a myriad of reasons Shane Bieber, Paul Blackburn, Dylan Cease, Tyler Glasnow, and Corbin Burnes could all be potentially on the move this offseason. These are clearly better options than Atlanta is going to find in free agency, but will come at a higher cost.
Blackburn is interesting when you consider Atlanta's relationship with Oakland swinging trades for both Matt Olson and Sean Murphy over the last two years. Perhaps that is a path the team may explore while chasing Nola or other top free agents.
Burnes and Glasnow (who could also fit with the New York Yankees), in particular, are exciting potential fits for this rotation, but both would cost Atlanta a hefty price. The Braves would need to be sure they had an extension in place before dealing with any of these names to offset the cost.
No matter whether it is through free agency or in the trade market the need for another pitcher is clear and must be addressed if Atlanta hopes to end their streak of postseason flameouts at the hands of Philly. Simply shopping in the bargain aisles isn't going to get the job done for a franchise that clearly is a piece or two away from another World Series run.