Best and worst trades by the Braves

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Since moving to Atlanta in 1966, the Braves have had their share of good and bad trades. Heading the list of wise moves was dealing for John Smoltz in 1987. One of the most unpopular ones was trading two-time MVP Dale Murphy in 1990. Here is a look at the team's best and worst deals in Atlanta.

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Atlanta Braves' batter Fred McGriff follows through as he hits a two-run-homer off Chicago Cubs' pitcher Rodney Myers during the fourth inning in Atlanta, Monday, May 20, 1996. The Braves defeated the Cubs 18-1.  John Bazemore/AP Photo
John Bazemore/AP Photo
Atlanta Braves' batter Fred McGriff follows through as he hits a two-run-homer off Chicago Cubs' pitcher Rodney Myers during the fourth inning in Atlanta, Monday, May 20, 1996. The Braves defeated the Cubs 18-1.

THE FIVE BEST

BRAVES GET: John Smoltz

TIGERS GET: Doyle Alexander

DATE: Aug. 12, 1987

COMMENT: Smoltz went on to become one of the most dominant pitchers in team history, amassing more than 3,000 strikeouts in his career while finishing as the only player in major league history with 200 wins and 150 saves. Alexander went 9-0 with a 1.53 ERA for the Tigers in '87. But his career fizzled, and in his final year in 1989, he went 6-18.

BRAVES GET: Fred McGriff

PADRES GET: Vince Moore, Donnie Elliott and Melvin Nieves

DATE: July 18, 1993

COMMENT: McGriff hit .310 with 19 homers down the stretch in 1993, leading the Braves to an NL West title. He played four more seasons in Atlanta and helped lead it to the 1995 World Series crown. Nieves was a prize prospect, but he never had more than 64 RBI in a season during his career.

BRAVES GET: Tim Hudson

ATHLETICS GET: Juan Cruz, Dan Meyer and Charles Thomas

DATE: Dec. 16, 2004

COMMENT: Hudson has been an ace in the rotation for seven seasons, earning an All-Star nod in 2010. Of the players sent to Oakland, only Cruz is still in the league, currently with the Rays. Thomas, a bright young outfielder, played in 30 games in 2005 and never reached the majors again.

BRAVES GET: Marquis Grissom

EXPOS GET: Roberto Kelly, Tony Tarasco and Esteban Yan

DATE: April 6, 1995

COMMENT: Grissom won two Gold Gloves in Atlanta and helped it win the 1995 World Series. Kelly played for eight teams and later managed the GreenJackets. Tarasco might be best known for having a ball snatched away from him by Yankee fan Jeffrey Maier as an Oriole in the 1996 ALCS.

BRAVES GET: Otis Nixon and Boi Rodriguez

EXPOS GET: Jimmy Kremers and Keith Morrison

DATE: April 1, 1991

COMMENT: Nixon stole a career-high 72 bases and hit .297 in 1991, helping Atlanta go worst-to-first and reach the World Series. He was also an exceptional outfielder. Neither Kremers nor Morrison were called up to the majors after the deal.

THE FIVE WORST

BRAVES GET: Mark Teixeira and Ron Mahay

RANGERS GET: Elvis Andrus, Neftali Feliz, Matt Harrison, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Beau Jones

DATE: July 31, 2007

COMMENT: Teixeira hit .317 with 17 homers down the stretch, but the Braves failed to make the playoffs. He was traded in 2008. Feliz, Andrus and Harrison became pivotal parts to Texas' first American League pennant in 2010.

BRAVES GET: Len Barker and cash

INDIANS GET: Brett Butler and Brook Jacoby

DATE: Aug. 28, 1983

COMMENT: Barker finished the 1983 season 1-3 for Atlanta. In just more than two seasons in a Braves uniform, he went 10-20 with a 4.64 ERA. In the 14 seasons after the deal, Butler hit .295 or better nine times and was one of the league's top defensive players and stolen base threats.

BRAVES GET: J.D. Drew and Eli Marrero

CARDINALS GET: Adam Wainwright, Jason Marquis and Ray King

DATE: Dec. 13, 2003

COMMENT: Drew had one solid year for the Braves, hitting .305 with 93 RBI in 2004. He signed with the Dodgers in 2005. Wainwright became a front-line starter for the Cardinals, winning 19 games in 2009 and 20 in 2010.

BRAVES GET: Wally Joyner, Reggie Sanders and Quilvio Veras

PADRES GET: Ryan Klesko, Bret Boone and Jason Shiell

DATE: Dec. 22, 1999

COMMENT: In 2000, Joyner, Sanders and Veras combined to drive in 106 runs for Atlanta. In 2001, Klesko had 113 RBI and Boone, who had joined the Mariners, had 141.

BRAVES GET: Jeff Parrett, Jim Vatcher and Victor Rosario

PHILLIES GET: Dale Murphy and Tommy Greene

DATE: Aug. 3, 1990

COMMENT: Parrett pitched in only 38 games for Atlanta during the 1990-91 seasons. Vatcher had only seven hits. Murphy, a two-time MVP, was one of the most popular players in Braves history and his departure angered many fans.


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