Braves Trade Rumors: Reading the Tea Leaves

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We are still way early in the MLB offseason, but that doesn’t mean that Alex Anthopoulos has been asleep at the wheel. Far from it. While there’s not a single Braves transaction that has transpired in December, there was a lot of action in November:

Like AA does every year, he’s utilized the first month to address the 40-man roster and bring in a lot of RP arms to test out during Spring Training. Elledge, Tonkin, Santana, Anderson, and even Allard have attributes that could fit well in the bullpen and their arms will be tested in front of a lot of eyes come February.

Whispers, Secrets, and Downplaying

The end of November and the beginning of December brought about 11 days of 0 news regarding the Braves, then the juice started dripping:

  1. Braves were in on Jacob DeGrom, but Rangers put price tag on him AA wouldn’t match.
  2. Ken Rosenthal reported that the Braves inquired about Oakland’s catcher Sean Murphy. Fast-forward a few days and Mark Feinsand tweeted that the A’s were on the verge of trading him and that the Braves were the frontrunners. Fast-forward a few hours and Feinsand rebuked his own words.
  3. Although AA has a policy to not talk with free agent players directly, he held a phone conversation with Dansby Swanson and said it was a “great conversation”.
  4. Addressing the luxury tax, Anthopoulos stated that it would not be a problem should Braves find the right fit to improve the team.

Nothing in the above 4 statements have come to fruition, but encouraging news nonetheless, as it shows Anthopoulos has been active in both the high-end free agent market and the high-end trade market. I think we are going to continue hearing big names attached to the Braves.

But Why Sean Murphy?

It’s already been debunked, but I don’t believe for a second that AA has moved on. He likely inquired, discussed a deal, then backed off at a specific price. If Beane doesn’t get what he seeks elsewhere, he’ll circle back.

But why Sean Murphy? The Braves have Travis D’Arnaud, Manny Pina, William Contreras, and Chadwick Tromp all on the roster. Why add Sean Murphy? I think the answer is quite simple: AA has a type. Let’s take a look at the catchers that AA has went into each year with since his hiring:

In both 2021 and 2022, AA had William Contreras ready to get battle-tested at the MLB level. However, both years, AA chose another backup for the Opening Day roster. In 2021, AA tried hard to keep Contreras away from catching by signing, trading, or activating catcher after catcher. In case you’ve forgotten: Alex Jackson, Stephen Vogt, Jonathan Lucroy, Kevan Smith, and Jeff Mathis all tried to fill-in while Travis D’Arnaud was on the shelf. This seems like a lot of work just to limit Contreras’s innings.

In 2022, Contreras’s workload increased, but he was still only called on behind the dish 37% of the time while D’Arnaud caught about 63% of the games.

So, why would AA inquire about Sean Murphy? While it may be a guess, it’s an educated on based on past usage: There’s something that AA doesn’t like when it comes to William Contreras. If AA’s history isn’t just a coincidence or small sample, his preference is established veterans behind the plate. While D’Arnaud was getting extended (and before him, Tyler Flowers), Shea Langeliers, who was largely considered the catcher of the future, was getting traded. And if it weren’t for COVID, Contreras would’ve been left off the Opening Day roster for 3 straight years.

To the point, I wouldn’t be surprised if Sean Murphy, or another established veteran catcher, breaks camp in a Braves uniform while William Contreras breaks camp with another team.

Author: Ryan Cothran

Ryan is the site editor and manager of Braves Journal. Follow him on Twitter.

73 thoughts on “Braves Trade Rumors: Reading the Tea Leaves”

  1. We better not be losing Maroth.

    See news:

    “Craig Bjornson, who had been the Mets bullpen coach in 2022, will be the Braves AAA pitching coach in 2023. Matt Tuiasosopo will be the manager.”

  2. The Mets are going to put ~$90MM into two pitchers who will be a combined 78 years old on Opening Day. It’s a bold strategy and I hope it fails spectacularly.

  3. Ryan, I really appreciate such a detailed look at this, though I disagree with you!

    I would actually argue the opposite. In his career with the Blue Jays, Alex Anthopoulos inherited John Buck but handed the catching duties to JP Arencibia, a rookie with power but no plate discipline and poor defense, who ultimately lost the job on the merits. When Arencibia washed out, AA then went to vet retreads Dioner Navarro and Russell Martin. Martin was, admittedly, much better, but he’s one of the best catchers of his generation and was perhaps the single most underrated catcher in baseball for much of his career. When AA went to Los Angeles, the catcher was Yasmani Grandal, and AA wisely stuck with him as he was an All-Star and one of the better backstops in the league.

    I think AA has generally been pretty flexible on player type, on kind of classic moneyball principles: he loves 1-year contracts for veterans, over long-term contracts; he loves high-skill guys who have been otherwise undervalued due to some other kind of flaw, whether it’s Adam Duvall’s low OBP or a pitcher’s injury history.

    Most significantly, he appears to believe that recent performance is insufficiently valued in the market and loves pouncing with contract extensions for players with a short, recent stretch of elevated play, which paid massive dividends with Travis d’Arnaud, Edwin Encarnacion, and Jose Bautista, but was iffier with Will Smith and proved disastrous with Ozuna. That’s also how I’d characterize the Riley, Strider, and Harris extensions.

    But because of that, I’d bet that AA saw what we all saw in Contreras: a 24-year old who hit his way onto the All-Star team while making the major league minimum. Based on my read of AA’s history, I think there’s a high likelihood that he likes that just fine.

  4. NL East keeps getting more and more interesting. According to Philly talk radio, Phillies probably have about $39 million left under the luxury tax, give or take about $6 million to sign young players, leaves them about $32-$33 million to finish the roster. Probably means Rodon is out of consideration. Still need a starter and don’t have a bullpen.

  5. Signing a dude to an 11 year contract whose legs are his number 1 feature is so so dumb.

  6. If that’s what a shortstop costs, I’m bracing myself for Elvis Andrus, and I’m not happy about it.

  7. I hate this division. We’re small market even if we have more money than usual. I doubt AA will hand out a bunch of Bobby Bonilla contracts, but our two main rivals are so loaded that they don’t care, and they’ll be doing this stupid stuff every year.

  8. @7 thanks to the new schedule in 2023, there will be fewer of those games. Only 52 annoying matchups (instead of 76).

  9. Here in South Carolina, we have wealthy neighborhoods (Mets, Philies) and we have “redneck money” neighborhoods (Braves).

  10. @10
    This trade put the Phillies over $200MM on the year, per Cots.

    The Verlander signing put the Mets right under $270MM

    The Braves are at $191MM and they haven’t made their big splash yet.

    That’s simply an inaccurate statement and AA has already stated that if the right fit comes along, the luxury tax will not matter.

  11. Yikes… That one will feel real good about year 6.

    Having said that, the Braves remind me alot of my alma mater, Auburn. Good enough to win one every now and then and talks a big game about doing what it takes to stay competitive but when it comes down to it, while they’re talking, others with even deeper pockets (Bama and Georgia) are actually doing.

    AA is a fantastic GM, arguably as good, as Schuerholtz. It’s a good to great organization. But I’m tired of penny pinching. Honestly, they should have already just eaten the Ozuna money. IMO the pressure is on now to sign Swanson. Even more than it was before.

  12. Yeah, that’s an insane deal. Good for Turner. Bad for us. Dansby is gonna get paaaaaaaaiiiiiddddd.

  13. @13, the Braves aren’t going to have a $280M payroll. Doesn’t mean we can’t win. It is what it is.

  14. @14 But Chief, they just got Hugh Freeze!

    In all seriousness, Hugh Freeze is probably the best coach they’ve had since as long as I can remember. He got busted for being a shitbag (which amongst the coaches aren’t?) and doing things that are now legal. The pearl clutching with Freezer is stupid.

    And they did pay him big coins. His $6.5M salary is top 15. And that’s misleading since you have some coaches ahead of them making insane money because that’s what those programs have to pay to get a good coach (Stanford, MSU, Ole Miss, A&M). Top 15 still means it’s only 6-7th in the SEC, but he’ll undoubtedly make more as he does better than Harsin.

  15. @Alex

    Anthopoulos’s time between the Blue Jays and the Braves was filled with 3 years of a heavy on the analytics Dodgers team. It’s been clear since AA took over as the Braves GM that an experienced catcher is his preference as he’s started every single year with 2 veterans.

    On Contreras, maybe it’s Snitker, not AA that likes veterans behind the plate but AA listens to Snit and maybe that holds weight.

    However, if it is AA, and he thinks that Contreras is a subpar catcher and only useful at DH, selling high for a strong LFer and/or SS would be wicked smart GM’ing.

  16. @18, you are closer to the team so I fully accept that you may have keener insight into how the team actually thinks about roster construction.

    But just from the outside, I can’t think of a recent example of the team turning aside a young catcher in favor of a veteran — indeed, their treatment of Contreras up to now suggests the opposite, considering that Contreras’s playing time last year was much greater than a typical Braves backup catcher. Just for example, in his brilliant years as backup, David Ross got 150-200 PA; last year, Contreras got 376, scarcely fewer than d’Arnaud’s 426.

    Looking at the past few years, the only rookie catcher I see who arguably could have tested my theory was Alex Jackson, but I think we all saw that he failed on the merits. The guy just couldn’t hit, and he couldn’t hit in Miami, either, after we cut bait.

    If Alex Jackson could have made a case for playing time, I believe he’d have gotten a chance. AA’s Braves have generally given their young players a chance. He might not have gotten endless opportunities to fail — just like the previous administration’s treatment of Christian Bethancourt, Christian Pache wasn’t given much rope before the team decided to bail on him. But I think he would have gotten a chance to hit his way on, or off, the team. I don’t see the org philosophy as all veteran, all the time.

    And after all, Brian Snitker was Brian McCann’s manager in the minors. He’s been a strong supporter of numerous Baby Brave waves, past and present. I think he’s been just as pro-rookie as a manager as I believe that AA has been as a GM.

  17. Ok, I admit like many I’m reading here that I am prone to get all excited (negatively) when I see our rivals out spending like Scrooge McDuck.

    I try to remember that no one wins a WS by winning free agency. AA will make moves and we will enter the season next year as a better team (at least on paper) than last year.

  18. Seems fair to imagine that if AA is going to find a trade for a SS, our side of the deal is going to be Contreras and others depending on what we are getting back.
    And, that seems a reasonable strategy, in terms of keeping us competitive over the next few years.

  19. Seriously, if you’re not willing to pay for a free agent shortstop (and I’ve seen no reason to believe the Braves are), prepare to be disappointed by shortstop. There are no trade targets who are both a) any good at all, and b) realistically available. It’s dire out there. Unless Swanson gives them a sweetheart deal, or Vaughn Grissom wows Ron Washington, they are firmly in stopgap territory.

  20. @Chief

    Of course, that would be your stance. I’m not sure why it’s your stance because this team has won the division five straight years under AA AND ONE WORLD SERIES. HOW IS IT THAT YOU CAN ASK FOR MORE?

  21. We have very good management, top-shelf when compared to all of MLB. But we’re going to get out-spent by five or six teams, all of which are serious contenders. Both things can be true. It’s not really a criticism, it’s just how things are.

    I don’t think anyone is lying when they say “we have a lot of money to spend” – but that doesn’t mean they’ll actually spend it. Maybe they spread it across 5 bullpen arms and a handful of underrated starter candidates, a good but not-superstar LF, etc etc. Or maybe they sign Judge. Lol.

  22. The Auburn analogy kind of fits, except for the fact that AU’s executive branch is comically dysfunctional and the Braves’ is an intelligent and tight ship. (Congrats on Freeze though, I think you made the best move possible given the situation).

  23. I don’t think anyone is lying when they say “we have a lot of money to spend” – but that doesn’t mean they’ll actually spend it. Maybe they spread it across 5 bullpen arms and a handful of underrated starter candidates, a good but not-superstar LF, etc etc. Or maybe they sign Judge. Lol.

    If you’re spending it, then you’re spending it. And I don’t care how they spend it so long as we end up with another championship roster, which we will.

  24. My impression was that the organization was impressed with Contreras’s improvement behind the plate last year. If they really regard him as a glorified version of Eli Marrero, then they’ve been feeding some serious P.R. to DOB and the rest.

  25. AA has proved that he is spending when he believes it makes sense for the club. I don’t quite understand the sentiment that the Braves won’t be spending money just because the Phillies got Turner. In AA I trust.

  26. 2017 Braves Payroll (the year before AA took over): $123MM

    2018 OD Payroll: $118MM
    *A reminder: He inherited a mess and almost immediately traded Kemp for Kazmir, McCarthy, Culberson, and Adrian Gonzalez (DFA’d him right away), and won 90 games & the division with this team: https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/ATL/2018.shtml

    2019 OD Payroll: $115MM
    2020 OD Payroll: $58MM
    2021 OD Payroll: $131MM
    2022 OD Payroll: $178MM
    2023 OD Payroll (as of now): $191MM

    Outside of 2019, the Braves have increased payroll every year (no one is counting the COVID year), AA has said that if the fit is right, the luxury tax will not matter. The Braves are going to have a 2023 payroll that is either the top 5 in the league, or right outside it.

    I know it’s popular to dog Liberty Media, but how is it that anyone can criticize what will likely be a $100MM payroll increase in 4 years?

  27. @32 The gross numbers are just not that relevant with the huge increases in revenues and franchise values, especially Atlanta. Liberty was basically given hundreds of millions of dollars in high cash-flowing commercial real estate by the hard working taxpayers of Cobb County. I don’t think they should get credit for gross increases since that is literally the least they could have done.

    With that said, Atlanta does continue to climb the payroll rankings, so Liberty does deserve credit for making their product more competitive relative to the league. But I just think using gross payroll numbers as an indicator is a flawed metric.

    https://www.spotrac.com/mlb/payroll/

    If this is accurate and holds through the end of the offseason, this is what should be shown to the bitchers and whiners. We are out-spending our competition, and fans can be so dumb when their rivals are literally just trying to keep up with us. I could not care less that the Phillies signed Trea Turner. That has NOTHING to do with Atlanta. And the Mets made a lateral move replacing deGrom with Verlander.

  28. Great point, Ryan. And of course as has been mentioned, in five years of AA as GM, the Braves have five division titles and one world series championship. How many of either of those things do the Mets and Phillies have during that time? And even with the Verlander and Turner signings, the Braves talent pool under contract over the next several years is still greater than that of the Mets and Phillies.

    You know, even UGA and Bama don’t have five consecutive division championships. And analogizing the Braves to Auburn? That’s not a serious comparison.

  29. You really consider divisional rivals improving to have nothing to do with Atlanta? It’s not like the Braves blew away their competition last year. They won on a tiebreaker, and then lost to a third-place team in the postseason.

    Anyway, I don’t really care about the payroll or how it stacks up to anyone else, per se. It’s not my money. What I do care about is what the team looks like, and it’s easy to imagine them left without a chair after the music stops. The Braves don’t really have a lot of places to reasonably improve if they’re going to punt on shortstop and pretend like Ozuna and Rosario are the answers in LF/DH… So you’ll spend the money if there’s a good fit, fine. What if there isn’t a good fit? I’m confident Acuna and Albies will have better 2023s than they had 2022s. Maybe Olson does as well, stranger things have happened. Are we putting all our chips on internal improvements?

  30. @35

    New York made a lateral move, so no, I don’t think that impacts Atlanta at all.

    The Phillies won 87 games last year, and they produced 2.6 fWAR at shortstop. They’re now spending 10 times as much as on their shortstop to get another one and a half WAR or so. Golf clap.

    We need to keep doing what we’re doing.

  31. Are we signing anyone for 250M+? I think that’s a hard no. So what’s left to ponder? Make a run at Brandon Nimmo? Maybe. It’s looking like signing Dansby is paramount. The bargain SS options are all bad, so bad that I’d just roll Grissom out there and see what happens. If they can’t work it out with Dansby the dooming on this board will be dwarfed by the cries from the majority of the fanbase. And it would be deserved.

  32. Let’s be real, AA isn’t going to compete in the market of elite free agents. He’s said it numerous times that he doesn’t find free agency the best way to acquire talent. Can you blame him? I know I would not have been very happy if AA signed Turner to a $300MM deal, a deal that will cripple spending for years to come. Trading for high-end players and extending them, and/or extending in-house players during their peak years is the best way to keep talent while being able to afford to add to payroll.

    The Braves have legit stars around the horn and they don’t need that one big free agent to put them over the top.

    I have seen one idea floated around that I’d at least think about entertaining:
    Braves get Javy Baez
    Tigers get Marcell Ozuna+ a few prospects.

    If it was a straight swap, the Braves would be paying Baez $83MM for 5 years. IMO, you’re not going to get any cheaper.

    Baez was really bad last year, but he did have an absolutely horrendous start. From mid-June on, he was a .750ish OPS dude. Could Seitzer fix him? Can he fix himself?

    This feels like a risk AA wouldn’t take, but if an Adames, Hoerner, or Amed trade doesn’t work out, it could be a fallback. Or…just go with Arcia and upgrade everywhere else.

  33. “Everywhere else” is literally one-and-a-half positions! (Plus pitching, I guess, but if they’re not going to spend on shortstop they’re not going to spend on difference-making pitching.) Give me a name that makes up for going replacement-level on shortstop in the middle of your window!

    Sorry I can’t get excited about a core position getting demonstrably worse so they can sign Trey Mancini and a reliever or two.

  34. I get the money swap for Ozuna (kinda), but I sure hope Baez wouldn’t be the answer to our current hole at SS. Good glove, but he swings at everything. Another guy like that in the lineup? I dunno… (FWIW, he played quite the heel in his short stint in Flushing… he was about as popular as Abdullah the Butcher with Mets fans.)

    Hey, the Phils & the Mets are gonna do what they do. Fine. It’s competition. Knock yourself out, guys.

    And it seems like the Phils are also taking an element of the Yankee playbook — big-FA signing = more season ticket holders/higher attendance/better TV ratings, etc. Go all-in & show the fanbase how “serious” they are. Just remember, that’s a SS that they’ll be paying until he’s 40.

    Nonetheless, I’d sure rather produce the top-end talent than drive to a Miracle-Mile boutique & acquire it.

  35. @39
    Let’s be real. If AA isn’t trading and/or signing a SS, it’s because he’s either:

    A) Upgraded big time in the rotation or OF
    B) Think Wash’s work with Grissom prepared him for life as a regular MLB SS.

    If it’s A, and he’s landed a big bopper that can start in LF or DH, Arcia at SS would be fine. If it’s B, that means he can go with the minimum at SS and upgrade several positions with the saved $.

    If Arcia is the starting SS in 2022, then LF, RP, and SP will be absolutely stacked.

  36. Wouldn’t a Reynolds trade solve a lot of this? The Pirates say they are looking for pitching; the Braves can supply that in spades and throw in an OF to take up the empty space.

    Sign Dansby and trade for Reynolds and all will be good with the world. Braves will be the team to beat. Icing would be getting rid of Ozuna’s salary somehow (or making a bad contract swap). Contreras/D’Arnaud are good for DH. With Reynolds and Dansby in tow and Grissom/Arcia/Hiliard in reserve (maybe even Duvall), you could not build a better team of position players.

  37. From least to most becoming:

    Rending one’s garments in public over anything the Mets/Phillies do, not waiting until the offseason’s over before criticizing the Braves’ spending, optimistically-inclined armchair GMing, making Abdullah the Butcher references to brighten people’s days

  38. Apparently the padres offer to trea turner was over 341 million….must be nice to be able to turn down 41 million dollars ….

  39. Using mlbtradevalues, Reynolds for Contreras/Elder/Smith-Shawver (or some other low level prospect) would get it done. The simulator thinks we don’t have enough pitchers to do it without including a major-leaguer. That would leave us with TdA/Pina at C and Rosario/TdA at DH (or Ozuna or Duvall or something). I’d like to think throwing in Rosario would help but he has net negative trade value.

    That and signing Dansby should really make us good.

  40. It’s looking like signing Dansby is paramount

    I’ve been saying this all along!

    That said, a bad contract swap for Javy Baez is intriguing and I could easily talk myself into it. (Of course, I nearly talked myself into a bad contract swap for Jason Heyward a couple of years ago. I can rationalize almost anything!)

    The real trouble is, the floor on his performance is a lot lower than it was a few years ago. A few years ago, he was one of the best defenders in the league. Now, he’s… not. And if you believe UZR, his performance last year was straight up double-plus-ungood.

    He turned 30 five days ago. His Baseball Savant page is Tiffany blue. Let’s just throw money at Dansby, please!

  41. Honestly, I’d say Arcia is about the same level player as Baez at this point. Don’t need to pay 5/$120M for that.

  42. If you have to replace Dansby’s 6 WAR (even if you don’t think it’s sustainable, shrug) you can probably make a case that it can be made up organically via a combination of Acuna being much better next year and sticking a 3 WAR player or platoon in LF. We had the worst LF in all of baseball last year, we’d have to really try to do worse. Those two contributions alone might even it out? I feel like pitching remains a concern. Not a tire-fire / worry or anything, but a moderate concern. Morton will likely be a bit worse. Counterpoint/wildcard is Soroka’s unknowable upside. That’s a lot of rambling to say that it may not be that hard to get back to “even”. From there it’s marginal tweaks and we’re in the playoffs, which is what matters.

    Not having to replace Dansby is still way easier though.

  43. @48, I don’t know about all that.

    Since 2018, Orlando Arcia has been worth a grand total of 0.2 WAR in a little over two full seasons’ worth of plate appearances. Notwithstanding some effective performance in a small sample size last year, sandwiched around injury, he has been replacement-level with the bat and glove for virtually his entire major league career, except for his first full season as a starter in 2017, when he hit poorly but played good defense. That was five years ago and he has barely played shortstop in the last two years.

    Bad as he was, Javy Baez was a 2-win player last year; he was a 4-win player in 2021.

    Maybe, just maybe, some of Arcia’s offensive improvement last year was legitimate rather than just an artifact of small sample size, and he actually recaptured some of the offensive potential that made him a legit top prospect when he was in the minors.

    I’m just expecting that even if Baez regressed to the mean some last year, Arcia will do the exact same thing next year.

  44. @50
    All fair points, I’ve always thought Baez was a little overrated so I’m a little biased there. He’s fun to watch but just makes SO many outs. I do think Arcia made some changes the last couple years and his batted ball data has improved. It’s a good point though, he hasn’t been a full-time SS for a while.

    Hopefully we won’t need to find out.

  45. I really wish we could hear what Ron Washington thinks about Grissom. I know that will never happen, but still. I mean, saying that Grissom is improving by leaps and bounds doesn’t really tell us much, except maybe that the kid has a terrific work ethic. I mean, if I worked with Wash all winter, I would likely improve by leaps and bounds, too, but I still wouldn’t even be able to hold down the short stop position on my local men’s over 50 baseball team. If Ron Washington said Grissom was ready to hold down the position in the bigs, or was likely to be ready soon, I’d believe him.

  46. @52 What’s really, really nice about being a Braves fan right now is that I have confidence that our management will figure out if Grissom is ready and handle Dansby accordingly. It’s a nice spot to be, and I don’t know why there’s so much weeping and gnashing of teeth from Braves fans.

    That’s like that Auburn analogy from up this thread and also my Gators. I’m not totally confident the Gators able to make the big correct decisions at this moment. So my life as a Braves fan is much less stressful than my life as a Gator fan or the life of an Auburn Tiger fan. That’s also another weird thing about some of the Braves fans; they’re also Dawg fans. Their two big teams are well-oiled machines right now with almost no disfunction (though I do see how Stetson Bennett tips; tsk tsk). Go have a bourbon, fellas. Relax.

  47. Athens ain’t exactly Manhattan, but I’m not sure that tip would’ve even worked back in Blackshear.

    But the question of the day is… which NFL GM is willing to risk his job on Anthony Richardson? If any QB ever needed at least one more year of experience…

  48. @ 53 – Good words. I find the whining about us not spending enough compared to NL East teams, even though we are saying we are committed to a top 5 payroll, hilarious. How has all that extra spending worked for the Mets and Phillies? It appears Philadelphia’s last WS ring was 2008, the Mets won it in 1986 (36 years ago). Since 1995, Atlanta has won the division 17 times, the Phillies have won 5 times, and the Mets twice.

    However you measure it, it is not about spending money. It is about spending money wisely. The Braves are not perfect in that respect, but I’ll take their management top to bottom, every day of the week over the Mets and Phillies.

  49. Yeah, I said I wanted Bellinger. Nevermind. Dadgum, what an overpay.

  50. The Phillies signed Tijuan Walker to a 71 million dollar contract. They are, indeed, spending stupid money

    Could Elvis Andrus play a 2 WAR shortstop?

    This is braves14, not able to use the number in my name anymore for some reason.

  51. A few of the good guys guys left on the board are Boras clients. Are we pretty sure we’re never going there?

  52. Well Braves talk big spending .. Mets and Phillies walk the walk . BRAVES stand pat …do nothing .. we are playing for 3rd place .. all the talk
    We are afraid of going over the tax threshold .. I’m now hoping we don’t over spend on Dansby ..I’d havr over spent for Turner or Bogarts .. best bet is a trade now .. Adames for ss or Reynolds for OF .. we wasted 20 mil On Morton .. could have been in on T Walker but Phiks get him… sucks ..

  53. Test. Hey, Braves14! I fixed your account. Should be good to go! I’ll send an email to your email on file to let you know of the generic password I reset it to so you can change it.

  54. @41 …im not sure Grissom is ready for ss on the majors …he doesn’t have the glove. Bat or the range of Dansby … but if it means getting Reynolds and a good starter then may have to suffer with Grissom there ..

  55. I will admit that I have not studied the matter thoroughly. But… when I read the Taijuan Walker headline, he got literally about $50 million more than the number I was expecting to read.

  56. Luckily for the Yankees, they’re well-equipped to handle an albatross contract.

    BTW, Justin Toscano posted a tweet about Vaughn Grissom’s #WorkoutsWithWash last night. I took it as a PR tweet — the Braves trying to signal that they’re not going to sign Swanson.

  57. Okay, now Bravda wants us to believe that Vaughn Grissom = Jeremy Peña.

    I don’t like denigrating Vaughn (even though I feel like I keep doing it) — I think he had a highly successful rookie campaign in a lot of ways, and really turned a lot of heads as he rose from relative obscurity. He’s clearly going to be a part of the major league club in some capacity for a long while, plays the game with joy, and is an easy guy to root for.

    But Jeremy Peña was a top prospect entering last year: BA had him in the top 100 and BP had him in the top 20. He maxed out his potential and then some. He also had a lot more recognized potential to begin with than Vaughn Grissom, who never made a top 100 list.

    Two things are clear. First, the Braves like Vaughn Grissom and think he can continue to grow as a player. Much more importantly, the Braves want us, and Dansby’s agents, (and Braves media,) to believe that they have a Plan B.

    It is no knock on Vaughn Grissom to say that he’s not remotely likely to have a five-win season in 2023 like Jeremy Peña had in 2022, or even a season half as good. The idea that the Braves think he can be that good would be concerning if it weren’t so transparently a negotiating tactic.

    I’m concerned that the AJC’s beat writer is so easily snowed, though. Unless Vaughn has improved by multiple scouting grades this offseason, that tweet is astoundingly credulous.

  58. Nice post, AAR.

    I like Grissom but have no idea if he will ever be a major league shortstop.

    I don’t want to pay Swanson $25M+ for 7+ years. AA has done a wonderful job for five years, not perfect but mighty good. I guess I’ll leave it up to him.

  59. Yeah, I rolled my eyes at the Jeremy Peña part. If the Braves thought that they had a 5 WAR shortstop on their hands, then they wouldn’t even be toying around with re-signing Swanson.

  60. Yeah, the Peña part is hype. But IF Grissom can play SS competently, then he’s probably a 2.5-3 WAR SS, and I can definitely live with that for the league minimum. I love Dansby, I want him back, but it’s not like we have no one behind him the way we had no one behind Freddie.

    Grissom could be Amed Rosario next year: below average defense per FG, .280/.312/.403 for a 103 wRC+, 18 SBs, 2.4 fWAR. If you can get that for the league minimum and go spend $25M elsewhere, that’s not a bad way of handling the situation.

    But let’s say he’s actually a decent defender, then he’s who Elvis Andrus was last year: above average defense per FG, .249/.303/.404 for a 105 wRC+, same 18 SBs, 3.5 fWAR.

    If he can play legit defense, it won’t take much for Grissom to be a perfectly good replacement for no money.

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