Archive for November, 2012

Braves make qualifying offer to Bourn

The Braves made a one-year qualifying offer to Michael Bourn before Friday’s deadline, as expected. Now the real intrigue begins.

Bourn is represented by high-powered agent Scott Boras, and the speedy leadoff man is expected to be pursued by multiple teams including Philadelphia and Washington. It’s assumed he’ll reject the one-year, $13.3 million qualifying offer and field multi-year offers from various teams including possibly the Braves.

Under baseball’s new collective bargaining agreement, teams had until Friday to make one-year qualifying offers to their free agents in order to draw a compensatory draft pick between the first and second rounds if that player signs with another team.

The qualifying offer amount is the average of the top 125 salaries in baseball from the previous season. Free agents have seven days to accept or decline the offers, and if a player accepts he becomes signed for 2013.

It was seen as a foregone conclusion the Braves would make a qualifying …

Continue reading Braves make qualifying offer to Bourn »

Braves GM on Gattis: “Very good prospect”

He’s 26 years old and has but 933 plate appearances in professional baseball, none above the Double-A level. But don’t for a second think that Evan Gattis isn’t considered a legitimate prospect by the Braves. The know they have a special case with the big Texan catcher-turned-left fielder, who keeps responding to new challenges by crushing baseballs.

022812Braves

Evan Gattis came up as a catcher, but the Braves moved him to left field to help potentially get his big bat to the majors sooner.

The Gattis legend has spread to Venezuela this winter, where he’s picked up the nickname “El Oso Blanco” (White Bear) from his mostly Latin teammates on the Aguilas squad while hitting .324 with five homers, 16 RBIs and a 1.009 OPS in 18 games through Thursday. And can I just say, that’s a damn fine nickname.

Gattis was tied for fourth in the Venezuelan Winter League in homers, fifth in OPS, and had six doubles and a league-high 43 total bases.

After getting off to a torrid start at Class-A Lynchburg …

Continue reading Braves GM on Gattis: “Very good prospect” »

Schafer is back, but not to replace Bourn

The Braves reacquired Jordan Schafer from Houston on waivers Thursday, but quickly made it clear the enigmatic former Atlanta prospect was a low-cost addition for depth, not a contender to replace center fielder Michael Bourn if they lose the All-Star leadoff man to free agency.

Schafer, the Braves’ Opening Day center fielder in 2009, has a .221 career average and .305 on-base percentage with eight homers and 51 stolen bases in 238 games, including a .211 average  with four homers and 27 steals in 106 games for the Astros in 2012.

“We saw him on the waiver wire and felt he would improve our depth in the outfield,” Braves general manager Frank Wren said. “It doesn’t affect how we pursue or try to put together our team this winter. But he’s very talented. He has above-average talent in three areas – run, throw and defend.”

Also Thursday, the Braves announced the hiring of Dave Bialas as a minor league fielder coordinator and outrighted three players off their 40-man roster: …

Continue reading Schafer is back, but not to replace Bourn »