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SBD/February 21, 2014/Franchises
Welcome To The Future: Braves Ink Yet Another Long-Term Deal With Young Star
Published February 21, 2014
BRING 'EM YOUNG: Baseball writer Peter Gammons noted of Freeman, Simmons, Kimbrel and Teheran, "None of these four players are over 30 at the end of their deals." An MLB GM said, "What the Braves have wisely done is pay for the players’ prime seasons. There are no high 30’s end-of-career debts, like Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton or Robinson Cano. Atlanta bought prime years. It’s brilliant." An MLB player agent added, "This is the future. I think you’re going to see teams designate their best players and pay top dollar up through the age of 30." Gammons writes MLB agent Scott Boras "may not like it, but offer a 21-year old kid a ten year deal and he may have a tough time turning it down rather than being Scott's pawn" (GAMMONSDAILY.com, 2/20).
GIVE ME LIBERTY: CBSSPORTS.com's Dayn Perry noted the Braves now have more than $38.5M "in payroll obligations" for the '20 season. Just 16 teams have "any money at all committed" for '20, and only the Yankees and Rangers "have more set aside than the Braves." Team Owner Liberty Media has "invested in its product to an extent not seen in many other MLB markets." It is "probably no coincidence that this outlay comes in the afterglow of getting their new suburban ballpark approved." The Braves "don't think much of their current local-television contract, which is the cash cow for most high-payroll teams these days, but they do think much of building a new stadium within their ticket-sales nexus of Cobb County and with the help of hundreds of millions of tax dollars" (CBSSPORTS.com, 2/20).