Late last week the Braves completed one of the most significant deals of the offseason, acquiring Justin Upton from the Diamondbacks in a seven-player trade. Martin Prado headlined the four-player package going back to Arizona, but Atlanta also surrendered projected fifth starter Randall Delgado in the move. The Braves have pitching depth, especially since Brandon Beachy is due to return from Tommy John surgery at midseason, but there is always room for more. At the moment, the Braves have a solid front-four featuring Kris Medlen, Tim Hudson, Paul Maholm, and Mike Minor. The fifth spot is up for grabs with top prospect Julio Teheran the presumed front-runner. The 22-year-old right-hander owns a 5.19 ERA in three very brief big league stints over the last two years, and it's worth noting he pitched to a 5.08 ERA with 18 homers allowed in 131 innings down in Triple-A in 2012. Teheran has star potential but is a work in a progress, and a club that is "all-in" like the Braves might prefer a veteran stopgap. Down in his native Puerto Rico, former Brave Javier Vazquez is drawing rave reviews for his winter ball stint. The 36-year-old right-hander has pitched to a 3.52 ERA with 30 strikeouts and just six walks in 23 innings (five starts), and recent reports indicate his fastball is living in the 92-95 mph range. Vazquez is considering a return to the big leagues after a one-year hiatus, though he is supposedly in no rush to sign. He's also made no secret of his desire to pitch close to home on the East Coast throughout his career.
Braves should consider a reunion with Javier Vazquez
CBS Sports | Jan 28