In order for the Braves to get Cease they’ll likely have to go above and beyond in order to outbid the Dodgers and their solid farm system.
The ONLY way they’ll be able to do that is by including Vaughn Grissom, Bryce Elder or Aj Smith-Shawver, and likely Hurston Waldrep or Spencer Schwellenbach.
I’m ultimately hoping their deal with look more like Grissom, Waldrep, Dodd, and then Murphy.
Honestly, I highly doubt either of the Braves young trio of pitchers would be ready by the beginning of the ’25 season
Murphy is likely the one that could be ready by then, but there’s no reason to push Owen Murphy before he’s truly ready.
These are all former HS pitchers, and Ritchie and Phillips have both dealt with injuries in the last two years.
With that being said, I think it may be Schwellenbach that’s actually the one who could have a meteoric rise similar to AJ Smith-Shawver. He’s raw, since he was a two-way guy in college, and he just recently dedicated his full efforts to solely pitching.
After suffering an injury, cutting short his ’22 post-draft debut Svhwellenbach required Tommy John surgery. Last season he was able to show he’s now fully healthy and ready to start showing off that arm.
After having a full off-season, I fully expect him to take off this year. I think he will ultimately land on some top 100 lists towards either the middle of this season or certainly at least after the end of the season.
The Braves other pitching prodigy named Spencer has a solid three pitch mix: fastball, slider, change-up. Each of his pitches are rated as being above average led by his fastball and his slider. His change-up isn’t a slouch either as he’s able to get good sink on it, and often uses it well off his other pitches to either get guys to chase low and out of the zone or induce weak contact. His fastball is flat out EXPLOSIVE, and he can run it up to 100mph when he’s firing on all cylinders. It isn’t just his lack of pitching experience why some scouts compared him to Jacob DeGrom, it is because this young man has the natural stuff and arm talent to match some of the very best.
Smith-Shawver, Waldrep, Schwellenbach, Luis De Avila, Kuehler, Murphy, Ritchie, Phillips, Hackenburg, Maier, Lara, Braun, Baumann, Keller, Owens, etc. the Braves A and AA rosters are FULL of pitching talent that is well prepared to take off next season.
With that being said, there is another 23-24 year old that most Braves’ fans don’t include in…