Inbox: How much would it cost for Realmuto?

Beat reporter Mark Bowman answers questions from fans

November 16th, 2018

I'm in all in for a J.T. Realmuto trade, but what would the cost be for the Braves and what are the odds they make that move?
-- @23Cooperd

Over the past few weeks and months, we've extensively discussed why Atlanta seems to be a good landing spot for Realmuto. But it takes two to tango, and at this moment the Marlins don't seem interested in dancing with the Braves.
Sure, just like with last offseason's talks regarding and Realmuto, the Marlins would be interested in any deal that includes I'd equate this to a team telling agent Scott Boras that it is interested in signing to a deal that includes an average annual value below $20 million.
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Any trade discussion that includes Acuna is a waste of time. Fortunately for the Braves, they can look elsewhere to satisfy their need for a catcher and to validate a willingness to shop their surplus of top-quality prospects on the trade market.
There's some thought the Marlins are not willing to trade within the National League East Division. This seems short-sighted, considering they're shopping a catcher who will be a free agent long before they are competitive again. It also seems ridiculous when you consider a year after trading , Yelich, and Dee Gordon, Miami doesn't have a player within MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list.
The Marlins aren't in a position where they can be picky. But at the same time, they also have the right to take their time in their search for the right deal. I just don't get the sense the Braves are interested in waiting around to see if a potential deal for Realmuto develops.
Obviously, part of the appeal of landing Realmuto would be the fact that he'd be a cheaper option than and possibly . Consequently, there would be more remaining financial flexibility to address other needs. But gaining that desired wiggle room could also be realized via other trade and free-agent options.
With the Braves having the 9th and 21st overall Draft pick next year, do you think it will have as much of an impact on a decision to sign any of the six players who declined a qualifying offer?
-- @cmilner2

We know the Braves aren't going to sign Harper or Manny Machado. We also know it is highly unlikely 's asking price drops into Atlanta's comfort zone. The post-2015 version of A.J. Pollock is not necessarily appealing and there seems to be a strong expectation will end up signing with the Yankees.
So, this seemingly leaves as the only member of this group who seems like a potential target for the Braves. The fact he declined his qualifying offer will have no effect on Atlanta's two first-round picks.
As one of the 16 teams that received revenue sharing and did not exceed the competitive balance tax, the Braves would simply forfeit their third-highest Draft pick.
How far is Cristian Pache away from being deemed Major League-ready?
-- @EricGarcia75

While there's at least a chance Pache could be a September roster addition next season, it's best to target him for a 2020 arrival. The young prospect may indeed be the best defensive outfielder in the entire organization, and there's no doubt his natural physical maturation provided us a better understanding of his capabilities this year. But as he produced a .630 OPS over 109 plate appearances (29 games) after being promoted to Double-A, he showed he's far from a finished product.
It was certainly beneficial for Pache to spend the past six weeks playing in the Arizona Fall League, but it's never wise to put much stock in AFL stats. He'll likely begin this season at Double-A Mississippi and possibly move to the Triple-A level at some point. But we're not talking about an Acuna-level prospect. We're talking about a 20-year-old outfielder who had never homered before this past season.
As the Braves evaluate their outfield needs this winter, they can optimistically project Pache to be ready by 2020. But his presence alone will not prevent the team from targeting outfielders who can be controlled for more than the next two seasons.
Any word on a pitching coach in Atlanta?
-- @rodneykesler
The Braves are still evaluating internal and external candidates. They requested permission to talk to Chris Young, who was subsequently promoted to the role of Philadelphia's pitching coach. Young's rise led to the dismissal of former Phillies pitching coach Rick Kranitz, who now joins Bryan Price as a pair of experienced pitching coaches who are now free agents.
A couple weeks ago, I mentioned Rick Knapp as a candidate for Atlanta's vacant position. But it does not appear he was ever seriously considered for the job. Young's recent promotion has kept the search fluid and created reason to believe general manager Alex Anthopoulos might have been accurate when he said this search may extend into December.