Oct 4, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) turns a double play over Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Michael Young (10) in the seventh inning of game two of the National League divisional series playoff baseball game at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Morning Chop: Atlanta Braves News 10/21


The Celebrity Cafe

Atlanta Braves Catcher Likely To Receive Huge Contract During Free Agency

When the free agency period for MLB begins, there is one soon-to-be free agent that has been receiving quite a bit of early attention and could be in line for a huge new contract. Brian McCann, the current catcher for the Atlanta Braves, will very soon become a free agent, which means other teams would be free to sign the 29-year-old catcher. McCann has spent his current nine-year career in Atlanta, and there are several teams currently interested in signing McCann, mainly the New York Yankees.

 

Sep 13, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann (16) hits a home run against the San Diego Padres during the fourth inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

SB Nation reports that McCann could sign a contract for six years that could be around $100 million. That would make McCann one of three catchers in MLB that make over $100 million, behind Joe Mauer and Buster Posey. McCann’s salary from the Braves was $12 million this past season, which makes him the third-highest paid catcher in baseball. McCann has been selected to the all-star team seven times and has won the Silver Slugger award five times, as well as hitting over 20 home runs in seven out of the last eight seasons.

The New York Yankees have been speculated as the top candidate to sign McCann. The New York Post reports that McCann would be a good fit for the Yankees, due to his offensive ability, which the Yankees were lacking at catcher last season. The only concern for the Yankees is that the move to get McCann may prove to be expensive, but it could be beneficial for the Yankees to add a solid offensive weapon to their lineup.

 

Gwinnett Daily Post

Gwinnett Braves name new manager

For the second consecutive year the Gwinnett Braves will have a new manager.

This one comes with a hometown feel.

The Atlanta Braves announced Monday that longtime third base coach Brian Snitker will replace Randy Ready as manager of the Class AAA club. Ready’s contract was not renewed by the Braves. He joined the organization at the start of last season, coming over from the Texas Rangers.

Ready was let go after leading the G-Braves through a rough 2013 that saw the club go 60-84, the worst record in the International League. Snitker will be the third manager for the G-Braves since moving from Richmond to Gwinnett in 2009. He is the third in as many years.

This will be a return to a minor league managerial post for Snitker, who last managed the Richmond Braves in 2006. He also managed at Mississippi, Greenville, Myrtle Beach, Macon, Danville, Durham, Sumter and Anderson, all within the Braves organization. As a manager, the 57-year-old’s record is 1,140-1,145 in 17 seasons across all levels of minor league baseball.

 

Rant Sports

Did Atlanta Braves’ Andrelton Simmons Have Best Defensive Season in MLB History?

It’s well known that defensive metrics aren’t perfect, but they are still derived from scientific analysis and shouldn’t be tossed aside. There were three players who were so proficient defensively in 2013 that they broke into the top-10 single season defensive performances ever. According to Baseball-Reference’s measurements, Carlos Gomez and Manny Machado both broke into the top 10 with a 4.6 and 4.4 defensive WAR respectively.

Neither of those compare to the new reigning all-time leader, however. Simmons, who posted a 5.4 dWAR, toppled longtime leader (since 1906) Terry Turner, who did it at age 25. Simmons did it age at age 23.

Where does Ozzie Smith, the famed defensive expert of the St. Louis Cardinals from the 80s, stand on the matter? His best season was in 1989 at age 34 where he posted a 4.7 dWAR.

Simmons’ offense really started to come around in the latter part of the season as well. He jumped on the power train and started belting home runs and doubles at a decent rate as the season neared its end. At only age 23, Simmons has upside we have really yet to see. It’s likely he will break his own defensive record at some point and if his bat keeps coming around, who knows where this kid’s career ends up going. Maybe Cooperstown — time will tell.

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