If the Braves are going to add, they’ll have to subtract

According to MLBTradeRumors, raises for arbitration-eligible players Jair Jurrjens, Martin Prado, Eric O’Flaherty, Michael Bourn and Peter Moylan will add up to roughly $21 million against next year’s payroll. Combine that with their other contractual agreements and you get around $88 million, not including minimum salary players. So you’re pretty much at this year’s $91 million payroll.

Those arbitration raises, which include an additional $3 mil for Bourn,  projected to make around $7 mil next season, negate shedding the contracts of McLouth (who will be bought out for $1.25 million) and Kenshin. I’m trusting MLBTR’s math, assuming, for instance, they didn’t include McLouth’s contract against next year’s payroll.

So if the Braves are going to add an innings-eater or another bat, they’ll have to do so through a trade, subtracting players like JJ and Martin. MLBTR estimates those two will make a combined $9.5 million in 2012. And they alone won’t get you a difference-maker; that would require a prospect or two.

The $15 million owed D-Lowe continues to limit FW’s options. He has only himself to blame, of course, and fans can only hope that contract remains the current administration’s biggest mistake.

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8 Comments on If the Braves are going to add, they’ll have to subtract

  1. I’ve done the math myself with the same results. To put the same team back on the field we’ll be right back at this year’s payroll. Arbitration raises plus pay raises to Uggla/Brian negate money saved. I’m guessing JJ and Martin will be dangled.

  2. I dont think we trade either. JJs stock is at a low ( maybe if he proves he is healthy in ST), and martin in his books is having a down year.. Id like to see a blocked SP prospect traded. I understand its cost controlled SP, but it does no good when you cant score any runs.

  3. As much as I love JJ, I think his time here is done.

  4. I suspect that if JJ goes, it will be at mid season when his value will be higher. I’d rather Hanson be the one who gets traded. I can’t see Martin going anywhere, as Chipper will need a backup at 3B. Lowe has made himself untradeable.

  5. I don’t think Lowe is untradeable, but he is definitely untradeable if the Braves aren’t willing to pick up a portion of his salary. We have to get some offense. Gonzales has had a great last week or so, but he’s had an absolutely miserable year with the stick. There are some guys i don’t think we can afford to give up on – Prado and Heyward specifically – but I think our future success depends on their becoming the stars they are capable of being. We really need Chipper to retire so we can go after a hard hitting left fielder and move Prado to 3B. I love Chipper but he’s going to start as long as he plays, so hopefully he won’t saddle us for long with a subpar player. He’s been pretty decent this year but still too injury-prone. I guess SS and either 3B or LF are the major wild cards. I certainly don’t see any movement at C, 1B, 2B, RF, or CF. I think a decision will have to be made between JJ and one of the young guns, whoever will bring the best return.

  6. I’m not too keen on trading any of those guys. I think if Heyward starts hitting like he’s capable, it will be the equivalent of adding a bat and the team will be far more formidable next year.

    Also, having Bourn for a full year vs just August and September will be huge.

  7. How frustrating was it to listen to Joe on Monday night describe perfectly how Jason’s stance is keeping him from maximizing his skills?

    I love Joe and I’m not surprised that he gets it but the galling part is that the flippin’ color guy in the booth knows this and somehow our “staff” doesn’t know it or won’t believe it.

  8. Agree with roadrunner – I think Prado is the 3B in the post-Chipper era. JJ on the other hand….

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