We are getting to the point in the offseason where most of the big names have been scooped as Atlanta’s own, Dansby Swanson, was seemingly the last big name to fall and at a heavy price tag of $177MM for 7 years. Was that a price the Braves could afford? I’d be willing to guess yes, but the bigger question is should they have paid it? Based on 2022’s numbers, that answer is ABSOLUTELY. However, looking at the bigger picture, Dansby’s highest fWAR was 3.4 before 2022 and he’s only collected 16.2 fWAR over the course of what equates to about 6 seasons. Still, that’s an average of 2.7 fWAR and would essentially give him a value of $22ishMM/year which is not far off from what he was given.
Now that Dansby is gone, AA with either have to add a SS or choose to start with Vaughn Grissom or Orlando Arcia. And not only will AA could very well have to add at SS, I cannot imagine that he’s satisfied with the LF situation and maybe even SP.
In taking those 3 into account, let’s take a look at the best of the mediocre and try to find a fit for the Braves in all 3 areas.
Looking for Outfielders
*Admittedly, this could be a moot point at this time after yesterday’s signing of Jordan Luplow (I’ll also remind you that Luplow has an option). Still, if the Braves somehow decide to move on from Marcell Ozuna whether it’s via release or trade, this idea could still be relevant.
This is a guess… but it’s at least an educated one. Unless it’s Michael Conforto on a 1 year prove it deal, the Braves aren’t going to go out and grab another strictly LH hitting outfielder. As of now, that job belongs to Eddie Rosario with Sam Hilliard as the guy that will plug in should Rosario’s eyes not adjust. If AA is looking to add, I believe that addition will come in the form of a RHH outfielder. Here are my top 3 Free Agent RHH outfielders:
All 3 of these guys have shown the ability to hit well against LHP and play OF pretty well over their career. None of them would be costly and all provide value in that they’re defensively flexible.
Looking for Shortstops
The list out side of him is grim. If AA can pull off a trade and not give up much, Kim Ha-Seong or Brandon Crawford could be a good fallback solution.
Looking for Starting Pitchers
While the high-end front of the rotation dudes are long gone, there’s still plenty of attractive options left for the Braves to consider. If the Braves were able to grab someone with a QO attached or even on a “prove-it” deal, that would be ideal. My top 3 candidates:
I think the first 2 guys would be in for a higher AAV 1 year deal while Eovaldi would want at least 2, unless he’s find the market is lowballing him due to the QO curse attached. All 3 would be put into a stressless spot of filling in the back end of a rotation with 5-6 quality innings each time out.
Ok, Braves Journalers! Who would you like to see in a Braves uni next year?