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Braves like Rasmus, but they don't believe he is available

The Braves would love to have Colby Rasmus -- and they'd be willing to give up a lot of young talent to get him, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. But writer David O'Brien doesn't think the Cardinals will ultimately be willing to part with him.

O'Brien writes:

...the Braves would love to have Rasmus and tried to trade for him in the past, and the Cardinals’ Rasmus and Tony La Russa don’t have the greatest player-manager relationship. However, the Cardinals also know that Rasmus can be an affordable and extremely productive player for several more years, long after La Russa is gone. And for a team that needs to save money at a few spots so it can spend big money at others (i.e. Albert Pujols), that’s no small consideration. If the Cardinals trade Rasmus, who led all major league center fielders with an .859 OPS in 2010, it’ll be for a bounty of young talent, which from the Braves would surely need to include at least one young pitcher and/or top pitching prospect.

That could happen. But it seems more likely that the Cardinals won’t trade him.

There's no denying that there are things about the way Rasmus plays the game that I don't like. But the Cardinals need to exercise extreme caution when it comes to potentially dealing him. As O'Brien points out, the young Cardinals flychaser is a rare commodity and St. Louis would have to get a whole lot in return to have a deal make any sense at all...

Even if Rasmus never becomes a middle of the order hitter, where else could the Cardinals find 25 homers and decent production numbers from someone who could hit second, fifth or sixth for less than half a million bucks?

At this point of his career, Rasmus offers as much value because of his price as he does because of his talent. It gives the Redbirds the financial flexibility they need to fill other holes.