According to the ajc.com, the Braves have decided not to pursue signing Jorge Cantu. For those of you out there going “Huh?”, like I was, read on and I’ll try to make this make some sense.
When I heard this, my reaction was, “I didn’t know the Braves were pursuing Cantu”. Then I thought, “Why in the world would the Braves even be thinking about signing Cantu?”. I’d be willing to bet more than a few of you had the same reaction.
Honestly, I’m not so sure the Braves were ever considering Cantu. I think this might be a case of an unemployed player trying to stir up interest in himself by starting a rumor. In fact, Cantu was quoted as saying that he was in discussions with the Braves. Of note, though, this quote happened after his negotiations with the Astros fell apart. Maybe he thought “Nothing ventured, nothing gained”.
But really, to me Cantu makes no sense for the Braves. First off, he’s looking for a full-time job. Last I heard, the Braves don’t have one open. Further, if the Braves need any help in the infield at this point it’s someone who can play shortstop, which Cantu can’t. If you say “What if Chipper can’t go?”, need I remind you that no one will know that until late in spring training. The Braves are assuming at this point that Chipper will be the regular third baseman. If he can’t go, then they want Prado to play there. And Prado will get time there resting Chipper in any case. Finally, I’d be amazed if Cantu would sign for the million dollars or so the Braves probably have available. When you look at the likely roster, it would seem to me that the million dollars would be better spent on a scrap heap centerfielder/corner outfielder.
All-in-all, I chalk this one up to another slow news day. Does anyone think the Braves are wrong here?