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Braves In Hot Pursuit Of Cubs SP Ryan Dempster, Nationals And Cardinals Also In Trade Talks

As the trade deadline draws ever closer, teams are beginning to scramble to possibly add that final piece to the puzzle to their teams. Could a player added in July help a team make the playoffs? Maybe make a run in the post-season? Maybe win a World Series?

Let's slow down a bit and lets just consider the thought of Ryan Dempster being the newest addition of the Atlanta Braves.

The Braves, along with the Washington Nationals and St. Louis Cardinals are in talks with the Chicago Cubs in acquiring starting pitcher Ryan Dempster. Dempster's 2012 campaign thus far has been a strong one, as a 5-4 record with a 2.11 ERA in 15 starts has been one of the few bright spots on a Cubs team languishing at the bottom of the NL Central standings.

What would the Braves be willing to part ways with? In past speculations for Zack Grienke, Braves GM Frank Wren would only consider parting with prized pitching prospects. Young pitchers Mike Minor and Randall Delgado have struggled, but Ben Sheets has started off well in his return to the major leagues. Will Ben be enough, or is Dempster a must add? Time will tell as the deadline draws near.

Read more on the Braves at Talking Chop and SB Nation Atlanta. Head over to Federal Baseball and SB Nation DC for more on the Nationals. Baseball Nation is your source for news and analysis around Major League Baseball.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.