Throughout the years, the Atlanta Braves have spent some serious cash on some serious players. But who cashed in the most money in a single season?
The contract of Matt Kemp, maybe even B.J. Upton or Dan Uggla might be the first thoughts of some, but the largest amount paid to a single player in 1 year by the Braves is actually someone you should be very familiar with...
1.) Freddie Freeman - $20.5mil
In 2017, Freeman cashed in the Atlanta Braves largest single-season contract raking in $20.5 million. Freeman is on course to make $21mil in 2018 and 2019, and $22mil in 2020 and 2021.
Freeman signed a 8 year / $135mil extension with the Braves in 2014. This extension marked the longest extension ever given by the Atlanta Braves, which breaks the record of 6 year / $90mil signed in 2000 by the next guy on this list...
2.) Chipper Jones - $16,061,802
Even after restructuring his contract with the Braves in November of 2005 because he felt his contract had become a "drag" on the Braves payroll, Chipper is still #2 on this list.
The most money Chipper made in a single season was in the 2005 season, the season before his contract restructure, when he made $16,061,802.
3.) Mike Hampton - $15,975,184
The most Hampton made in his 4-year tenure as an active pitcher for the Braves was $15,975,184 in 2008 , the last year of the 8 year / $121mil contract he signed with the Colorado Rockies in 2000, which made Hampton the highest paid MLB player in history at that time.
2008 was also his 3rd last year as a major league pitcher since he had Tommy John surgery in 2005, which benched him for all of 2006 and 2007 while under contract with the Braves.
4.) Matt Kemp - $15.75mil
The recently departed Matt Kemp would have been #1 on the list, but the Braves were not paying Kemp the full $21.75mil of his earnings in 2017. Something similar happened a few years ago with some guys named Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn; They were traded to Atlanta in 2015 along with $15mil from the Cleveland Indians as salary relief.
While with the Braves, the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers paid a combined $6 million of Kemp's contact in 2017, leaving the Braves to pay the $15.75mil remaining of his contract for the 2017 season.
5.) Tim Hudson - $15.5mil
Hudson made $15.5mil with the Braves not only in one season, but in two consecutive seasons: 2008-2009.
There was the Top 5, and here are the 10 players that follow suit:
6.) Derek Lowe - $15mil in 2009
7.) Justin Upton - $14.25mil 2014
8.) Ervin Santana - $14.1mil in 2014
9.) Andruw Jones - $14mil in 2007
10.) John Smoltz - $14mil in 2008
11.) B.J. Upton - $13.45mil in 2014
12.) Dan Uggla - $13mil in 2011, 2012, & 2013
13.) Bartolo Colón - $12.5mil in 2017
14.) Trevor Cahill - $12mil in 2015
15.) Brian McCann - $12mil in 2013
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