The 6 Incredibly Smart Trades The Braves Made That Got Them To The World Series

AA needs to stick to his guns and principles. AA’s FF (financial flexibility) is what won the Braves a WS. Remember a team WITH Freddie, and WITH Ronnie underperformed and was mediocre, until the trade deadline reinforcements and bullpen consistency arrived.

Braves have to be careful not to turn into the 2016 Cubs. Can you imagine 5 years from now Braves being a 90 loss team? If it can happen to the Cubs, who had more money than the Braves, ran by one of the best GMs in the game (Theo Epstein), and who had a strong young core and a dynasty on their hands, it can happen to the Braves. Main culprit? Bloated FA contracts. Just ask Freddie’s minor-league best friend, Jason Heyward. Bloated FA contracts also pressures the team to win now to make good on the bloated contract, causing poor judgment in trades, decimating the farm system.

Freddie is not immune to aging, like every player ever before him. He also had the highest GB% of his career this year: past 5 years (36.3%, 36.8%, 38.1%, 32.8% (60-game only), 43.2%). Pretty sure that’s trending the wrong way. And he’s also not immune to injury, as he’s had elbow problems in his career. That Yelich contract is a great example; all it takes is one nagging injury to cripple a mid-market team.

Freddie is also not better than Goldschmidt, $135M gives Freddie $5M more than Goldy. Maybe 5 for $140M to give an extra $5M for Charlie’s hitting development.

Lastly, Freddie doesn’t have a strong market for his services that will pay him more frankly. Not many teams actually need a 1B compared to other needs. Let’s assume Freddie wants to go to play for a ball-club that’s competitive and not rebuilding (excludes Cubs, Nationals, Diamondbacks, Rockies, Rangers, Royals, Orioles). And of course team has to be willing to give out a big contract (excludes Rays, Guardians, Marlins, Pirates, A’s)

Here are the remaining teams and who they have at 1B currently, their other team needs, and what other big contracts they already have:

Mets: Alonso, don’t need a 1B

Phillies: Hoskins, don’t need a 1B

Brewers: Tellez/Vogelbach; they could use an upgrade, but they already have the bloated Yelich contract

Cardinals: Goldschmidt, don’t need a 1B

Reds: Votto, don’t need a 1B, they are looking to sell

Dodgers: Muncy, don’t need a 1B; need a SS or 2B

Padres: Stuck with Hosmer contract; they can maybe want to upgrade, but will be hesitant to give out another big contract seeing Tatis with injury problems

Giants: all signs point to them wanting to resign Belt, considering they won 107 games with him, and they would prefer to spend on pitching instead

Astros: Gurriel; they’re not going to give Freddie a massive deal when they won’t give one to Correa or Springer

Mariners: Ty France, don’t need a 1B, need a 3B/SS/2B instead

Angels: Jared Walsh, they are stuck with bloated contracts with Trout and Rendon, also have been burned with Upton and Pujols, don’t see them going back to the aging mid 30s bloated contract when it hasn’t served them so well in the past. Note they are run by Perry Minasian now, who was with AA just a year ago. Their days of giving out bloated contracts just b/c seem to be over

White Sox: Jose Abreu, don’t need a 1B

Twins: Miguel Sano; even if he moves to DH Twins are looking to re-tool, not go all-in; after Josh Donaldson and Ervin Santana Twins will most likely be hesitant to sign away former Braves players

Tigers: they have a need but they are strong suitors for Correa. At his price tag they aren’t going to then sign Freddie, especially after watching Cabrera age

Blue Jays: Vlad Guerrero JR, don’t need a 1B

so really, that leaves Red Sox and Yankees as the likely suitors for Freddie > $135M.

But Yankees really want Seager/Correa, and after that they want pitching. Don’t see the Yankees signing both Seager/Correa and Freeman, since they need to sign Judge soon, and they have been keen to stay under luxury tax in recent years. IF they miss out on a SS, prefer to keep Torres, then yes, I can see them going for Freddie. But Seager makes too much sense for them

So maybe Red Sox? But they are run by Chaim Bloom, who came from the Rays, and their bigger needs are pitching, pitching, and more pitching (they certainly don’t need offense).

So yeah, absolutely no rush for AA to resign Freddie. Just like Ozuna last year, AA should stick to his guns, wait out the market, and sign Freddie for 5 for $140M. Win-win for team and player. AA keeps the flexibility to go make more trade deadline deals in the future, Freddie gets paid more than Goldy and gets to be the king of Atlanta for the rest of his career.

I guess there’s a wild-card that Freddie just goes for the money and signs with a team like the Rangers, but more power to Freddie if he does that; he would be miserable going back to a losing team and would make losing him more palatable for Braves fans. I get losing Freddie would be a big loss immediately, but if AA can replace Acuna and win a WS, he can find a way replace Freddie. Heck Matt Adams played really well as a Freddie replacement (so much so that Freddie returned back from injury quicker than expected to play 3B)

Thankfully this isn’t AA’s first or 2nd year with the Braves, and thankfully he has the resume of an architect of a WS with his deadline deals. He’s already used to offseason mocking and ridicule from Braves Country, so I think he will have the conviction to hold his ground, for the sake of the future budding Braves Dynasty. Scheurholz’s 14 straight really is in jeopardy as long as AA is in charge

Source : https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2021/11/details-on-talks-between-freddie-freeman-braves.html

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