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Braves GM: We sought Beltran, Rasmus

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

ATLANTA -- Braves general manager Frank Wren made inquiries about Carlos Beltran and Colby Rasmus before those players were traded this week and he continues to pursue ways to help his team's push for the playoffs.

Atlanta has been linked in trade speculation involving Houston's Hunter Pence, San Diego's Ryan Ludwick and other outfielders.

Wren told The Associated Press his team has sufficient position flexibility to make room for another corner outfielder.

"We think we have movable pieces within our outfield," Wren said Thursday. "We think we can do some things to rearrange our outfield to take on an offensive player that can help us. We feel like there's different ways we can do it."

The Braves' outfield usually includes Jason Heyward in right, Martin Prado in left and Nate McLouth or Jordan Schafer in center.

The versatile Prado started at third base against Pittsburgh on Thursday night as Chipper Jones continues to be limited by a quadriceps injury. Eric Hinske started in left field.

Schafer was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a finger injury Wednesday.

Beltran was traded from the Mets to San Francisco and Rasmus was dealt from St. Louis to Toronto.

"We've got a lot of different options out there," Wren said. "We had inquired about both of those players. In one case, one was not a very good fit for us. One was a good fit, it was just a matter of how we perceived a two-month player."

All-Star catcher Brian McCann, who has a strained left oblique, also was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday.

Wren said the injuries to McCann and Jones, who has been used only as a pinch-hitter since he strained his quadriceps Monday, do not place increased urgency on his search for another bat before Sunday's trade deadline.

"Not really. If we felt Brian was going to be out the rest of the year, but Brian feels like he's going to be back pretty quickly after the DL time is up, if not when the DL time is up," Wren said. "And Chipper, we think we'll get him back shortly. We should be able to put our team back together."

When asked if he'd like to see Wren make a trade, manager Fredi Gonzalez said, "I think we can improve our ballclub."

"I think if there's a player out there we're able to acquire and it makes us better, I think we'll do it."

Wren said he's also looking for bullpen help "if there's guys who can improve it."