Top 9 moves the Braves didn’t make
In no particular order:
- Signing Brady Anderson. It was the year after the Kenny Lofton trade, and when it became clear the Braves weren’t going to re-sign one of JS’ biggest mistakes the GM started wooing Anderson. The Baltimore CF, 33 at the time, was one year removed from his absurd 50-homer campaign and while his power dropped noticeably in ’97 he still put together a solid season, compiling a .863 OPS from the lead-off spot. Fortunately Peter Angelos was running the Orioles, and his five-year, $31 million offer lured Anderson back to Baltimore. He was pretty much a bust after that (save for ’99) and was released a year before the end of his contract. The Braves ended up signing the Big Cat to a $24.75 million, three-year contract. Galarraga had a .946 OPS in Atlanta.
- Signing Jeff Francoeur to an extension. In 2007 the Braves purportedly offered the Lilburn Flash in the Pan a six-year extension worth some $27 million. The Entitled One is said to have wanted double. Thank God JS didn’t bite.
- Signing A.J. Burnett. He would’ve cost more than Derek Lowe but was just as ineffective.
- Trading Glavine and Gant for Mike Greenwell. Bobby was willing to do it but the Sox got greedy, asking for Kent Mercker. GM Bobby countered with Gary Eave. Boston GM Lou Gorman said no, saving the Braves from a trade that would’ve rivaled Brock for Broglio as baseball’s most infamous deal.
- Trading Doyle Alexander for Steve Searcy. The Braves preferred Searcy to Smoltz but the Tigers wouldn’t part with the southpaw, thought to be major-league ready. Bobby settled for Smoltz. Searcy won six games with Detroit and Philly, finishing his career with a 5.68 ERA.
- Selecting Marc Newfield over Chipper. After Todd Van Poppel said he wouldn’t sign with Atlanta Bobby set his sights on a pair of high school sluggers. Newfield was projected as the next Dave Winfield but finished up with numbers similar to Tommy Gregg, according to Baseball Reference.
- Trading for Jake Peavy. Accounts vary as to who exactly the Braves were willing to trade (Yesco, Tommy Hanson …), but it doesn’t matter. One overpriced, injury-prone veteran pitcher had just left — FW didn’t need to replace him with another.
- Signing Fukey to a three-year deal before the ’09 season. Thank you Arn Tellem.
- Signing either Hanson or Jurrjens to a contract extension. It’s possible neither will be pitching in the majors next season.