The Atlanta Braves have been dealt a devastating blown with Ronald Acuna Jr. suffering a season-ending ACL injury. But in the middle of a playoff chose, rival executives don't expect the Braves to go down quietly.

As the trade deadline approaches, many are expecting Atlanta to be involved. However those executives don't necessarily envision general manager Alex Anthopolous making one big splash. Rather, they see the Braves making complimentary additions to their roster rather than re-shaping it, via Mark Feinsand of

“He's always aggressive,” a National League executive said. “That team has a chance to win another championship, so I believe he'll do whatever it takes to make sure he gives them the best chance of making that happen.”

“Toronto Alex would have,” an American League executive said of Anthopolous making a blockbuster trade. “Atlanta Alex is patient and measured. He's good. He'll get help; I just don't think he'll mortgage the future in anyway.

This isn't the first time Anthopoulos and the Braves find themselves in an Acuna-less situation. The outfielder tore his ACL back in 2021, rendering him out for the season. However, Atlanta managed to battle back and went on to win the World Series.

At that year's trade deadline, Anthopoulos went out and acquired Joc Pederson, Eddie Rosario, Jorge Soler and Adam Duvall. While it may be unlikely that Atlanta acquired four outfielders in Acuna's injury wake, at least one executive thinks the Braves' plan could be similar.

“I would expect that,” an NL executive said. “Not aggressive, just sensible. They are not deep, so even adding a decent mid-tier talent will be a real upgrade. They're unlikely to catch lightning in a bottle like 2021 again, but an addition would still make sense.”

If the Braves are serious about their World Series intentions, it makes sense to add a bat or two. While they have strong hitters throughout their lineup, Atlanta could use more depth and options across the board. A trade would get them the outfielder they covet, although the price or player is not yet known.

Still, Alex Anthopoulos has been in this position before. He must now decide how to proceed without Ronald Acuna Jr.

Potential Braves trade targets

Chicago White Sox outfielder Tommy Pham (28) hits an RBI-single against the Cleveland Guardians during the second inning at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

If/when the Braves swing a trade, Tommy Pham of the Chicago White Sox, Miami Marlins Bryan De La Cruz and Taylor Ward of the Los Angeles Angels were all named as potential targets. As were Victor Robles, who was designated for assignment by the Washington Nationals, and Ramon Laureano, who was released by the Cleveland Guardians.

Pham has been a lightning rod ever since joining the White Sox. Through 30 games, he is hitting .294 with three home runs, 12 RBI and three stolen bases. Pham was with the Arizona Diamondbacks for their run to the World Series. Perhaps he can help spur Atlanta's

Acquiring De La Cruz may prove difficult, as he plays for a division rival. However, his addition would be an intriguing one by the Braves, as he is hitting .253 with nine home runs and 25 RBI. Under team control through 2027, De La Cruz could factor into Atlanta's plans beyond 2024.

While the Angels had playoff aspirations of their own, Mike Trout's injury took a massive bite out of those dreams. If Los Angeles officially becomes sellers, Ward would be a strong trade piece. He is hitting .273 with 11 home runs, 34 RBI and two steals through 53 games.

Whoever the Braves end up adding – assuming they make a deal – will have big shoes to fill. No one is expecting them to be Ronald Acuna Jr. But they must produce. Anthopoulos will now scout the trade landscape and see which player(s) are the best fit in Atlanta.