Guerry Clegg commentary: Rewards of Freeman’s contract outweigh the risks
Baseball is a game of risk and reward. Every decision the manager or players make has a potential payoff and consequence.
Building a roster is no different. The financial risk the Atlanta Braves just took on first baseman Freddie Freeman is obvious. They have committed to pay him $135 million over eight years.
Freeman could get hurt like Bruce Sutter.
He could contract vertigo like Nick Esasky.
He could buckle under the pressure of trying to live up to an enormous contract — the largest contract in franchise history — like BJ Upton.
He could fail, or maybe just refuse, to adjust to pitchers who have figured him out — like Dan Uggla.
But locking up Freeman now was a smart investment. Failing to lock up their best player for the long term carried an even greater risk. Freeman already is a three-year veteran and one of the best hitters in baseball. It’s easy to forget that he’s only 24 and still getting better.
Atlanta Braves Keep Tradition Going With Recent Extensions
For years, the Atlanta Braves‘ power has come in dynamic duos. In the 1950s and 1960s, Atlanta had Eddie Mathews and Hank Aaron. In the 1980s, the bulk of the offense was provided Bob Horner and Dale Murphy.
This week’s extensions of right fielder Jason Heyward and first baseman Freddie Freeman have helped solidify a lineup and a franchise that has been competing at a high level in winning several division titles since 1991. The tradition of dynamic duos keeps going on. In an era of baseball when clubs let their best players test the free agent markets, the Braves have done something different in that they have secured the services of two of their best players for at least the next few years.
No more red jerseys
Those godawful alternate red jerseys are no more — the Braves will wear the creme throwbacks instead, sez DOB. Unfortunately, a version of the red jerseys, featuring an American flag patch on the sleeve, will be worn for five games as part of a military appreciation promotion.
Our fighting men and women deserve better than that.
Atlanta Braves Lock Up Freeman and Heyward: Could Andrelton Simmons Be Next?
Fans were restless.
But on Tuesday, the Braves and general manager Frank Wren reportedly reached multi-year contract agreements with first baseman Freddie Freeman and outfielder Jason Heyward, per Jon Morosi of Fox Sports.
Freeman’s contract is believed to be for eight years and $135 million. Heyward’s agreement was a two-year deal for $13.3 million.
The Braves were scheduled to have arbitration hearings for both players soon, but instead chose to lock up, arguably, the team’s two most valuable players.