Outfield Update

Written by Colin on February 12, 2009 – 12:47 pm

Thanks to Grant McAuley for the article suggestion. Check out Grant’s excellent blog “A ‘Braves’ New World” when you have time.

Bobby Abreu was recently snatched up by the Angels. Dunn was signed yesterday by the Nationals. Apparently Ken Griffey Jr. is nearing a contract with Seattle, and the Braves remain looking for an outfielder. Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal says that the Braves are looking into Garret Anderson, Luis Gonzalez and Jim Edmonds (Jr. was also mentioned, but best bet for him is Seattle at this point). Rosenthal also says a trade with Swisher is still a possibility, but less likely than a free agent signing.

We’ve already talked about what we think about Garret Anderson. He would knock in some runs but I don’t think he’d provide an incremental amount of power that’d set him above our current outfielder platoon options. Some people may disagree, and that’s fine.

Luis Gonzalez seems like a horrible fit. We wanted power. We need a cleanup hitter. Under 75 RBIs and an average of less than 15 home runs over the last three years? I just don’t see him as a fit. I’d rather watch Diaz/Jones. Jim Edmonds seems to be a better fit with an average of more than 15 HRs the last three years – still under 75 RBIs though – which we’ll forgive as he played with San Diego some of last year. Still not cleanup material with around a .250ish average. We could expect him to play in 110-115 games.

Xavier Nady hasn’t been mentioned much recently – I think that we’re probably shying away from the one-year-rental mentality that comes with trading for Nady. Swisher has a lot of $ attached to him and a three year commitment, but he could potentially cover first if the outfield got too crowded. I like Swisher for this year best, but long-term I’m not sure where he’d fit in.

I’d like to see us wait a little bit and see how the youngsters Schafer, Jones, Blanco, Diaz, and Anderson do in spring training before bringing in someone that’s going to bat middle of the order. If we bring someone in, Swisher sounds like the best fit if we’re willing to spend a little bit of money. Let the same comments flow that have been bouncing around the last few weeks :) Just had to update everyone on the potential outfield options.

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Posted in General | 30 Comments »

30 Responses to “Outfield Update”

  1. By Larry on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    It's Anderson or Swisher at this point. The only other alternative is to wait it out an see where we are mid season. I prefer Swisher because I don't want to go through this again next year. The Braves have been after Jason Bay forever, but last I heard he was talking extension with the Red Sox. Swisher cant command to much. He just came off his worst year. I think he's better than what he gets credit for. I'm sure Wren will make the decision that benefits us long term whether its a quick fix or trading some prospects. Only time will tell.

  2. By Blair on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    I think it's very possible we might try to pick up one of the Nat's OFs. Given the Kasten connection and they now have too many bodies after picking up Dunn, we might be able to get one of them very cheap: http://www.cbssports.com/mcc/blogs/entry/8691437/

  3. By Joe on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    Edmonds played for San Diego and Chicago (NL) last year.

    That said, I'd be interested in talking to Washington about one of their OFs, Baltimore about Luke Scott, or Minnesota about Delmon Young.

  4. By Colin Ake on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    Congrats Joe – you caught my unintentional error of the day. Didn't pay attention to the stats page and thought "TOT" must mean Toronto. That's what happens when you write an article while listening to a presentation.

  5. By Grant on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    If it comes down to Swisher or Nady, I'd rather see the Braves try to sign Garret Anderson or Ken Griffey. The shorter and likely cheaper contract would be a better fit with Heyward and Schafer on the horizon. Plus you don't have to trade away talent. Edmonds and L-Gone just don't seem like they have too much left to offer.

    And thanks for the plug!

  6. By Joe on Feb 12, 2009 | Reply

    I do what I can. :)

    The TOT abbreviation always gets me – I'm not sure why they don't show two by-lines to cover both teams, rather than that.

  7. By dave on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    If one or more of the young guys don't step up this spring, and it comes down to having to trade for Nady, or Swisher I have changed my mind I now think Swisher is the better option. Nady would be a one year shot, and if necessary Swisher can be hear for three. It sounds like the free agent market for decent seasoned outfielders is getting smaller day by day. I had hoped we could sign an older player only if we have too. I now would vote for Swisher only if we don't have to give up much, and I do mean not much. If the price is to high forget it. I really have faith in our young players. Who knows Matt Diaz may have a break out year he already a good hitter. Who knows at the end of the year we might be saying what a great season Matt Diaz had. Best Wishes GO BRAVES

  8. By Claus on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    Swisher flat out stinks and Wren would lose his job in 2010 for pissing away 22mm/3yr on that bench player in 2009.

    Swisher would not get more than a 1yr 1-2mm deal in today's market so how is he worth 22mm?

  9. By easton714 on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    (Rick Ankiel)

  10. By Parker on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    If we look at the splits, Edmonds hits RHP very well. He could also play LF and CF. I would recommend a platoon with Diaz/Edmonds and let Anderson/Blanco/Schafer battle for CF. If they all faulter at CF then Edmonds by default.

  11. By cardsfan on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    As a Cards fan I think the Cards would be happy to reprise the Drew/Wainwright trade 2009 version:

    Braves get: Ankiel (+1 maybe Duncan)
    Cards get Hanson, Reyes, Ridgeway


  12. By dennis on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I feel we should give our youngsters a chance. Plus Diaz is healthy. Do we really need a past their prime should be retired outfielder?

  13. By Joe on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I'd be amenable to such a situation, if we could get Edmonds on a minimal deal, even a minor league deal.

    I'm not sure he'd be willing to take it, perhaps he'd choose to retire rather than take that small of a deal, but he's not worth big amounts of cash.

  14. By Bravessince1969 on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    The Cards would make that trade allllll day long. Hanson by himself would be overpayment for Ankel for one year and ?Duncan?

  15. By Eric on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    If we're barrel scraping, how about a trade with the Nats? Wily Mo Pena? Josh Willingham? Kearns, if the Nats pick up a huge chunk of the $9M he's owed? I don't really like Kearns, but he is probably better than current options (which says a lot).

  16. By Jonathan on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I don't see the Braves giving up Hanson at this point.

  17. By varoadrunner on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    Not a chance we GIVE hanson away for that kind of trade. If we wouldn't do it for Peavy, not now.

  18. By Joe on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I actually like the idea of either Wily Mo or Willingham. Either could be had relatively cheaply, since they're not likely to get a ton of playing time in DC anyways (though, Bowden's not exactly the easiest to deal with), and they're both fair enough that we could throw them into the mix for LF/CF with the other guys.

  19. By Brent on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    We should wait it out for a bit to see how the young guns do and then make a move if necessary. It's not like we won't be able to get someone in a few weeks time.

  20. By northbeach Scott on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I think Wren realizes that 2009 is a rebuilding year and I do not think he will do anything foolish to mess up 2010 when Heyward, Schafer, Hanson, etc. are really ready to contribute. Cannot image giving up anything other than spare parts (Blanco, Anderson, and/or one of the out of options pitchers like Boyer, Carlyle, Bennett, Ridgway) for Nady, Swisher, Ankiel or Ludwig. Otherwise just be patient and see.

    The Braves will be neck and neck with the Nats pulling up the rear of the East in 2009. It will be good for Kawakami to get his feet on the ground, Jurrjens to build on 2008, and Hanson to get some starts 2-3 months into the season. We can also find out if Reyes or Morton has what it takes between the ears to be effective ML starting pitchers.

    Finally, we will know if Frenchy is really done or holds some hope for the future. I am not optimistic and his willingness to go to arbitration after his horrid 2008 is a good indicator of his poor grasp of the situation of his effectiveness and ownership of blame. Keep that RF warm for Heyward, oh one filled with hubris.

  21. By Brent on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    I really think Francouer is going to bounce back this year but I agree 100% with the arbitrartion comment. Really stupid the way he is handling it.

  22. By Colin Ake on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply

    Yeah, it gets me too. Btw, Grant just posted an excellent article about the case for Delmon Young in the outfield. Check it out – http://grantmc.mlblogs.com/

  23. By DAVID on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply


  24. By bravesny on Feb 13, 2009 | Reply

    First off how can you say atlanta will be in last place. First overall they have the best rotation in the east. Secondly francour had one bad season give him a break a lot players bounce back from seasons like that. You can’t compare him to Andruw. He never tried to adjust that’s why he is in the position he is.oh and for the cards fan how about hanson for you whole team lol.

  25. By bravessince1969 on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply

    Let me go on record as say that Wren has done a great job under difficult circumstances this off season. Just because something we wanted to happen did not does not mean that he failed, but that he had the good judgement to know a bad deal when he saw it. It amazes me how so many seem to be unable or unwilling to take in the realities of the real world. '"WELL, IF I WANT SOMETHING BAD ENOUGH THEN i SHOULD HAVE IT" As far as trades, if the budget is as tight as we hear we may need to see the results of arbitration to see how much money we have and perhaps how much a certain player may cost.

  26. By Will on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply

    Why not Jermaine Dye, we could trade them Soriano and Gorkys Hernandez, then maybe they’d eat some of Dye’s salary?

  27. By Art on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply

    Why don't the Braves consider Josh Willingham with the Nats. The Nats have 8 outfielders and Josh is a 20 hr guy that plays left field.

  28. By Larry on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply

    I agree, I really like Willingham.

  29. By Brent on Feb 14, 2009 | Reply


    ^Looks like we're interested in Griffey after all.

  30. By Cindyrose on Nov 25, 2012 | Reply

    I also agree that Josh Anderson is very promising. I love his blizang speed. Atlanta has lacked speed ever since Rafael Furcal left for Los Angeles. And no problem, you deserve the love on the side bar. And Julia, I think the Yankees want to deal either Swisher or Nady. Nady is the better player but he could just end up back in New York next season. He is going to ask for a ton of money and no one will want to pay that. Swisher, who isn’t quite as good, is a lot more affordable for teams while having a great upside. Swisher can also play first base which Nady has never played. Swisher is also a switch hitter so he is very versatile. In the end Swisher could end up being better than Nady. You just never know.


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