The team right ahead of the Phillies in the NL East also make some sense for Haniger, though the odds of a deal happening have quickly diminished. The Braves was reportedly one of the teams that were aggressive on Haniger this offseason, but refused to part with one of their top prospects (most likely Mike Soroka or Austin Riley) to complete a deal.
Now, with the arrival of Riley to join the likes of Ronald Acuña Jr. and Nick Markakis, the Braves have one of the best outfield trios in baseball. Therefore, there isn’t really a need for Haniger in Atlanta anymore.
This is one of those “if an injury pops up” teams. There’s a history there between the Braves and Mariners on the topic of Haniger, so if one of the former’s outfielders were to go down, things could get moving relatively fast given that both teams are well aware of what the other is after.
Another option is that, if something were to happen to Josh Donaldson, Riley could potentially return to his natural position of third base, ultimately leaving a hole in left field for the Braves to fill. But these are all just hypotheticals, and the reality is that this is no longer a likely destination for Haniger.
To keep the hypotheticals going, however, the Mariners could take on the contract of Ender Inciarte, who’s currently out with a back injury but has greatly struggled when he’s been on the field. Inciarte doesn’t have a huge price tag attached to him at $7 million and $8 million over the next two years respectively, but there is no clear path for him to find consistent playing time once again with the Braves.
Atlanta has one of the deepest and richest farm systems in baseball, so if they were put in a position to potentially make a desperate move for an outfielder this season, they could swing it without making a huge dent in their organization. But right now, their focus is on retooling a bullpen that’s currently ranked 24th in the MLB in fWAR. Potential Roenis Elías or Cory Gearrin destination maybe?