Okay, with the trade for Dan Uggla, it would appear that the Braves are through making major moves; the lineup, rotation, and back of the bullpen are all pretty much set up. The remaining efforts will be based upon tinkering around the edges, meaning the bench and the bullpen.
I still expect the Braves to make a move for a veteran righthanded reliever, maybe one who’s closed a little. (Though traditionally, they haven’t been too hung up on that.) I don’t think they want Craig Kimbrel to be out there without a lifeguard just yet.
The bench will have five men, two of them already set in David Ross (certainly, barring an injury) and Joe Mather (almost as certainly). They want to re-sign Eric Hinske, who provides a lot of insurance at positions the Braves can’t be too sure about.
That would leave two positions, which would have to be filled by (a) an outfielder who can play center, and (b) an infielder who can play short. Currently, Matt Young and Diory Hernandez are pencilled in, Hernandez probably a little more heavily. The outfielder is probably the more important of the two, because Alex Gonzalez, despite his myriad faults, is more dependable than Nate McLouth, and also a better defender at his position. You go into the season knowing that there’s a good chance your fourth outfielder is going to have to be the regular centerfielder for a stretch. I have to think that Wren will look among the various glove guys who are always looking for work and pick up a couple who can provide at least tactical (that is, pinch-running/late inning defense) value, even if you don’t want them playing every day. You can live with a guy who doesn’t hit much in the eight hole. I miss Gregor Blanco, he was a great #8 hitter.
Wren will also dispose of Kenshin Kawakami in some fashion, hopefully not involving cinder blocks, and no doubt will bring up McLouth’s name in any conversation he has with other GMs.