GM Coppolella says ‘good chance’ Braves trade for starting pitcher

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GM Coppolella says ‘good chance’ Braves trade for starting pitcher

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Braves GM John Coppolella (left) and President of Baseball Operations John Hart. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Braves general manager John Coppolella said there’s a “good chance” the team will trade for a starting pitcher before the July 31 non-waiver deadline.

Coppolella, responding to a question during his Twitter Q&A on Friday afternoon, said the Braves tried to acquire five-time All-Star Chris Sale and “other starters” in the past. The White Sox traded Sale to the Red Sox in December.

The Braves attempted to improve the starting rotation this season by adding veterans Bartolo Colon, R.A. Dickey and Jaime Garcia. But entering Friday, Braves starters ranked 27th in the majors with a 5.04 ERA. Colon’s 6.80 ERA was worse than all but three eligible pitchers, and Garcia (4.65 ERA) and Dickey (4.22) also ranked in the bottom 50.

During the Q&A, a Twitter user asked Coppolella if he feels “stupid” for signing Colon and Dickey to one-year contracts worth $12.5 million and $8 million, respectively.

“No,” Coppolella responded. “Long season. (Dickey) has pitched very well. One pitch away from a shutout on Sunday. Bartolo has struggled, but he always battles back.”

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