May 30, 2024

COLUMN: The Atlanta Braves aren’t coming out of the offseason with a splash, are they?

Atlanta Braves: Breaking News, Rumors & Highlights | Yardbarker

I apologize if this has been said before, but the Atlanta Braves have not made much noise in free agency.

It’s not that Atlanta didn’t try, mind you; Aaron Nola was reportedly offered $27 million a year before deciding to sign a seven-year contract with the Philadelphia Phillies, where he would receive less money annually.

Subsequently, Sonny Gray was linked to the Braves in the open market before agreeing to a three-year, $75 million contract with St. Louis, which could extend to four years and $100 million if the attached club option is exercised.

What happens next?

At this point, I’m not sure if Atlanta will make a major splash in free agency. Furthermore, I’m not sure if they should.

Was a front-line starter signed by Atlanta this offseason NEEDED?
As the World Series concluded and the offseason got underway, a lot of reporting—including this one from Braves Today—came to light about Atlanta’s “determined” intention to emerge from the free agency frenzy with a “frontline starter” and their willingness to pay real money to do so.

However, it hasn’t occurred thus far.

While there are still openings among the “frontline starter” options—Japanese import Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Cy Young winner Blake Snell, and two-way sensation (and two-time unanimous MVP) Shohei Ohtani—those three are less likely to sign with Atlanta than Nola or Gray were due to market forces and projected contract costs.

What makes us so intent on signing a starter, though? Is one truly necessary?

To be honest, that’s not the right question to ask. Atlanta set a team record in 2023 by using 16 different starting pitchers. One can never have too many opening pitches.

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