Braves Extend Freddie Freeman

THURSDAY: Jon Heyman of CBS Sports provides the contract breakdown (Twitter link): Freeman received a $2.875MM signing bonus. He will be paid $5.125MM in 2014, $8.5MM in 2015 and $12MM in 2016. His free agent years are valued at $20.5MM (2017), $21MM (2018-19) and $22MM (2020-21).

TUESDAY: Freddie Freeman has reached an extension with the Braves that not only gives him the franchise's highest-ever salary, but constitutes one of the biggest guarantees ever made to a player with less than four years of service time. The team announced the eight-year deal, which will reportedly guarantee the first baseman a stunning $135MM.

Freeman, like teammate Jason Heyward (who reached a two-year contract agreement earlier today), is represented by Excel Sports Management. His agents have secured him a larger guarantee than the five-year, $105MM promise made by the Brewers to Ryan Braun when he still had less than four years of service. It also bests the $120MM guarantee given by the Rangers last year to Elvis Andrus, when he had four years on his clock. The deal slots in beneath the eight-year, $159MM guarantee made by the Giants to Buster Posey (with less than three years of service) and the seven-year, $154MM deal given Adrian Gonzalez by the Red Sox back in 2011 (when he was a year away from free agency).

Freeman-Freddie

The 24-year-old Freeman is coming off a breakout season in which he finished fifth in the National League MVP voting and earned his first All-Star nod. Freeman slashed .319/.396/.501 with 23 homers for the NL East Division champs in 2013. But Freeman was somewhat less outstanding in his prior two seasons (the first of which was his rookie campaign at just 21 years of age). Posting a sturdy 1,255 plate appearances between 2011-12, Freeman slashed .271/.343/.452 and knocked 44 long balls. Though Freeman benefitted from a .371 BABIP last year, he also showed improvements in his strikeout and walk rates while carrying one of the league's best line drive rates. Clearly, the Braves expect Freeman to continue last year's output.

On the defensive side of the ledger, advanced metrics show mixed reviews but a clearly improving outlook. Freeman received his first positive UZR/150 rating this past year, and that metric sees clear and steady improvement across Freeman's early career. Meanwhile, Defensive Runs Saved reflects a similar upward trajectory and credits Feeman with saving a solid seven runs last year. Indeed, the Fielding Bible Awards voting tapped Freeman as the fourth-best fielding first bagger in the game.

For an idea of how this deal reflects on league-wide salary trends, consider Justin Morneau's January 25, 2008 extension with the Twins. With 3.168 years of service under his belt, and coming off of an MVP and then an All-Star campaign, the fellow first baseman was promised $80MM over six years. Though younger, Freeman signs his deal at a point at which he has shown a somewhat lower high-water mark and, arguably at least, a less-promising overall trajectory than that of Morneau. 

Indeed, as MLBTR's Steve Adams notes on Twitter, the Braves seem to have paid a hefty price for the five free agent years covered by the new contract. Even making the aggressive assumption that Freeman would earn $30MM over his arbitration period — quite unlikely, since he stood to make less than $6MM this year already — then the contract pays him a $21MM AAV for his free agent years. That implied free agency value, which is surely a low estimate, seems like a fairly steep price for a promise made three full seasons before Freeman would have hit the open market.

Freeman and the Braves faced a fairly wide gap after exchanging arbitration figures last month, as Freeman filed for a $5.75MM salary and the Braves countered at $4.5MM (MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz had projected a $4.9MM payday for Freeman).

Though the Braves are a "file and trial" team, GM Frank Wren reminded after Heyward's new contract that said policy is only in reference to one-year deals. That line of thinking is common among file and trial clubs, as they are unwilling to continue negotiating one-year pacts after exchanging figures but will typically remain amenable to extensions leading up to an arbitration hearing.

Freeman had previously been controllable through the 2016 season, but this new contract extends well beyond his initial six years of team control. Freeman will not be eligible for free agency until 2022, when he will be 32 years old. As such, it's a significant deal for the Braves, who typically don't make that type of commitment to players in advance of free agency.

The only player with fewer than five years of service time that has been extended to a deal of this length under general manager Frank Wren was Brian McCann, who inked a six-year, $26.8MM contract heading into the 2007 season when he had just 189 big league games (696 PAs) under his belt. McCann had less than two years of service time under his belt at that point, while Freeman is currently at three years, 33 days. Freeman's deal is the largest in franchise history for the Braves, eclipsing the six-year, $90MM pact inked by Chipper Jones prior to the 2001 season.

With Freeman and Heyward now having agreed to extensions, the Braves can turn their focus to closer Craig Kimbrel — their lone remaining arbitration case. Kimbrel filed for a $9MM salary to the Braves' $6.55MM offer, making his gap significantly more substantial than the gaps faced by Freeman or Heyward.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports first reported the agreement on Twitter. Jon Paul Morosi and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first reported that the two sides were nearing a multi-year deal (Twitter link). Morosi first reported that the deal was in the realm of eight years and nine figures (Twitter links). The Associated Press reported that the deal was for eight years and nine figures (via the New York Times). Peter Gammons of GammonsDaily.com reported that the deal would pay Freeman $135MM (via Twitter).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.


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139 Comments on "Braves Extend Freddie Freeman"


TheNextEpstein
1 year 6 months ago

If it is 8 years and $125mm giving an AAV of $15.6mm this is a great deal for the Braves. Locks up Freddie’s prime 24-31 seasons at a very very reasonable rate.

Bob Bunker
1 year 6 months ago

Well lets say his arbitration years would have been a total of 3 years 27. Then that would mean his 5 free agent years they are paying him 98 million or just about 20 million a year. I think personally they should have gone year to year with him and for 2014, 2015, and 2016 they would have paid him under the AAV of this deal and then as a free agent, I just don’t see him getting much more than 5 100.

TheNextEpstein
1 year 6 months ago

Maybe, but it is harder and harder for teams to lock up their players as they get closer to free agency. If they were to go year to year for the next 3 years and then let him go to free agency as a 27 year old I guarantee you he would get more than 5 years and $100mm. The market prices are going no where but up especially for a player the caliber of Freeman.

Bob Bunker
1 year 6 months ago

I don’t know I see a 1B who looks like a .350 OBP guy, with around 20 HR power, and poor graded D. Maybe as a 28 year old free agent that gets 6-7 year deal but I’m not sure if the AAV would exceed 20 million.

TheNextEpstein
1 year 6 months ago

But you are assuming he doesn’t get any better, and that he will return to the Braves. If he doesn’t get any better than you might be right but it is highly unlikely a 24 year old won’t get better. The closer a player gets to free agency the more costly a player becomes for the team to keep.

Bob Bunker
1 year 6 months ago

Yeah I think he will get better but look at the comparable.

1. Eddie Murray (First three years averaged 27 HR, career high was 32)

2. Jason Thompson (First three years hit 17, 31, and 26 never hit more than 31 and hit 17 at 28 and 18 at 29 and 12 at 30.

3. Erik Hosmer

4. Jack Clark (First 3 years 13, 25, and 26 and only had one year above 30)

6. Billy Butler (First 3 years 11, 21, and 15 career high 29 with years of 15 and 19 sandwiching that year)

All I’m saying is at 1B power pays and HR pays. Obviously, HR aren’t all that matters but I think that is his one way to improve and his comparables didn’t really improve much in that category.

I don’t know much about his scouting reports though I admit.

TheNextEpstein
1 year 6 months ago

Ok, assuming you are right and he hits 25-30 home runs the next 3 years, has OBP in the 350-390 range, plays average defense. You don’t think someone would offer a 27 year old 5 and 100? This isn’t the 90s, solid offensive contributers are hard to come by. The price for them will only continue to go up as has salaries the last decade.

Bob Bunker
1 year 6 months ago

Alright I guess my point was not necessarily he’s not worth his deal because he will be but that its not a great deal especially compared to other extensions.

Goldsmitch( 5 year 32 million extension with a 6th year 14 M option that starts this year)

Craig( 5 years 31 million with a 6th year 13 M option) Now I know different situations but even considering that is Freeman worth 3 times the commitment as those guys.

Longoria( 6 years 100 million additional)

-C
1 year 6 months ago

No contract will compare favorably to Longoria’s. It just won’t happen.

Goldschmidt’s contract buys out just one free agent year, with another FA year in an option. So it’s not really close to apples-to-apples with Freeman’s, as Freeman’s projects to buy five free agent seasons (assuming 8 years). The DBacks did get those FA years cheap, though.

Craig’s deal is similar, as it’s five years with only one of those years being a free agent year. They did get an option on a second FA season.And, again, they did it cheaply.

Getting five free agent years from Freeman is a really good get…they’re just going to come at higher expense because he was closer to free agency than either player at the time the contract was agreed upon.

When those deals are up, Freeman will still be locked in at ~$20M for 2-3 years and he’ll be much younger than either of those guys (2 years younger than Goldschmidt, five years younger than Craig). If those guys are still playing good ball, they’re going to get huge dollars when they hit FA. With inflation looking to be ~30% this year alone in the baseball world, they may be making upwards of $30-40M while Freeman makes considerably less. So it will balance out in the long run.

-C

Chris Koch
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman is 23 locked through being 31 That is awesome for any kind of extension. Not signing a guy to his 32-40age years which is what will happen when this contract ends. All Prime years here dream come true for Atlanta fans.

pft2
1 year 6 months ago

Yeah, and 3 yrs from now that 5/100 is 5/115

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman’s homerun totals in his career so far have been 21, 23 and 23. Why are you comparing him to guys that had seasons with homerun totals in the teens and saying that Freeman’s power peak is no more than 20 homeruns a year or so? Not to mention Freeman just turned 24 in September.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman is a .400 OBP guy with power potential of 30 HR, or thereabouts, and his defense has been ranked average to good in the past couple seasons.

-C

Bob Bunker
1 year 6 months ago

How is he a 400 OBP guy when he had two years around .340 and one year of .390 with a high BABIP that led to a rise in BA and thus OBP?

-C
1 year 6 months ago

Because more than a quarter of his batted ball profile is line drives, which is top-tier in MLB (and also highly favors the probability of a batted ball being a hit) while reducing his strikeout rate by 3 points over the past couple seasons and maintaining an above-average walk rate.

Given that he’s only 23, you also need to project improvement on these figures as he moves into his prime seasons.

It’s almost as if you know what the component statistics mean, you can properly project a player’s future performance.

-C

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

I don’t think Freeman has reached his power potential yet. I think Freeman develops into a 30 homerun a year guy despite being a linedrive hitter.

Chris Koch
1 year 6 months ago

I don’t think you’ve seen the 1b market lately. It’s putrid. In 3 years an AllStar 1b like Freeman will command close to Cano Money. Stud 1b apparently weren’t grown on trees in the late 90’s. All of Baseball last year in terms of WAR only 11 exceeded 3WAR and only 5 exceeded 5WAR Freeman being one of them. And when you go down the list you don’t say oh well so and so has 3+WAR potential. Freeman is elite for 1b 20+Mil in Free Agency would have been coming. Especially when Texiera was about to be a FA the same time Freeman was going to.

PaganIdolCow
1 year 6 months ago

The Braves have very good bullpen depth. Wren and his scouting staff are great at finding arms. Kimbrel may be a great closer, but the Braves’ budget shouldn’t be hamstrung by a closer.

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

I agree.

LayerCake
1 year 6 months ago

No one said it should be. What I am saying is that Walden isn’t the answer. If Walden was a closer the Angels would not have traded for Frieri.

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

Walden is 35 for 48 (72.9%) in his career in converting saves. That includes some situations where he wasn’t closing but suffered blown saves pitching in the 7th or 8th inning. That’s not great but you can find guys that have been plenty worse than that in their career including a few guys the Braves have had to deal with in recent years when they didn’t have Smoltz or Kimbrel closing.

LayerCake
1 year 6 months ago

Yeah and 95% of that comes from 2011 in which he also blew 10 saves in 42 tries. While thats not horrid he then gets demoted from the closer role the following season and then traded in 2013. So you now want to slot that same guy who hasn’t been in a consistent closer role since his rookie season back into the closer slot because Kimbrel is going to get paid? Since 2012 using your own stats he’s 3 for 6 in save attempts (50%). There’s a reason he was demoted by the Angels. And while the bullpen is good who really stands out as a closer? The Braves using yours and Pagan’s idea should have traded Kimbrel this off-season, signed Joe Nathan (who would have been cheaper per year than Kimbrel) until Hursh was ready (he’s still in Single-A). I’d like to add you are the same guy who also argued that the Braves have a limited window to win, Walden closing in this “limited” time frame is regression.

At the end of the day I’m not arguing we should pay Kimbrel an outrageous amount and I’m all for trading him if a reasonable deal can’t be worked out but you can’t possibly be comfortable with the idea of Walden closing…

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

I never said to trade Kimbrel. I was just trying to lay out a case where the Braves might be forced to trade Kimbrel after the 2014 season and what options the Braves would have to play with as closer in 2015 if that were to happen. Kimbrel isn’t a free agent until after the 2016 season. I could see the Braves keeping him for this season and next and then trading him 1 year removed from free agency. By 2016 Jason Hursh could be ready to take over as closer. Who knows? Maybe someone else will emerge in that time.

Now to address Walden. One of the reason’s Walden lost his closer’s role with the Angels was because of his back problems. The Angels wanted someone they knew they could count on to close every game without having to worry about a guy with a bad back. That’s the same reason Walden was traded by he Angels for Hanson, who had the injury concerns with his shoulder. Walden is a solid pitcher who could be a solid closer. He definitely has the stuff to get the job done at a high level.

Most guys aren’t groomed to be closers. Closers tend to happen by accident more times than not. Mariano Rivera and Joe Nathan, for example, were not groomed to be closers. Both only ended up as closers after they failed to make it in the majors as starting pitchers. Trevor Hoffman ended up as a closer because he was a failed hitter while playing SS in the Marlins system. There’s all sorts of ways to find a solid closer. That’s one area where you should never spend money, especially a mid market team like the Braves.

BraveCrowe
1 year 6 months ago

I must add to my original comment that this deal may also help raise the level of play and willingness to play through injury for other players. The braves were willing to pay a lot of money for a consistently good bat and someone who appears to be a healthy guy. I may be out of my mind for thinking this, but I think a deal like this makes Heyward, Minor, Simmons and others try to raise their level of play to cash in. I think the Braves are going to try to sign all three of those guys to major extensions in the next three years.

k26dp
1 year 6 months ago

I’m sorry, but this is absolute nonsense. Especially when is comes to the Braves, where players tend to play injured – often to the detriment of the team.

BraveCrowe
1 year 6 months ago

No harm no foul, matter of opinion right? Just because you think differently than I doesn’t mean I am right or wrong right?

My thought may be nonsense, just a thought however… Never claimed for it to be absolute truth.

k26dp
1 year 6 months ago

You thinking differently than me doesn’t make you right or wrong. You’re wrong on the face of the subtext of your original statement.

Nigel
1 year 6 months ago

Friendly Freeman for President ’16

burnboll
1 year 6 months ago

Unfriendly Unfreeman for UN president.

bhambravesfan
1 year 6 months ago

Goldy got 32MM so not even close

Guest
1 year 6 months ago

Good to hear!

geauxbraves2000
1 year 6 months ago

Locking up Freeman while entering his prime years, great move by the Braves! I’m really looking forward to next season!

Danny Phillips
1 year 6 months ago

Congrats to the Braves from a Nats fan. Wish we could have bought out some FA years with an extension to either Zimmermann or Desmond this offseason. Although, such an extension for either would have been a tad pricier in AAV. Should be a fun race this year.

NYBravosFan10
1 year 6 months ago

It’s the same thing with your guys as it is with Heyward. Now all of piddly little arb contracts are out of the way so it leaves room to eventually talk about a large extension. Doesn’t necessarily mean that Zim or Desi is going to leave at the end of their contract, it just makes things a little more comfortable, know what I mean?

Guest
1 year 6 months ago

He is only set to make about 30MM over the next three year in arbitration so 20MM a year would mean he is worth around 30MM a year in his 3 or so free agent years. Why wouldn’t they wait and not extend him if that were the case. 25MM will get you Chris Davis in FA

-C
1 year 6 months ago

$25M will not get you Chris Davis in free agency, as he’ll probably get locked up soon, and will likely get Cano years probably Cano-like money, if he repeats his 2013 performance.

-C

Mike Query
1 year 6 months ago

Your math is off, way off.

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

He had three more years of cheap arbitration. What a bad idea for the Braves.

Kevin Sheets
1 year 6 months ago

Since, we dont know the actual salary hard to determine if in fact if its good or bad. However, if you wait til players become FA you will pay more. As long as they didnt pay too much, this a great deal, IMO.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

And the Braves will still get those three seasons at discounted rates.

What a bad theory for you.

-C

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

I don’t think you understand how arbitration works. There’s no way he’s clearing more then $16M in the next three seasons of Arb.

Kevin Sheets
1 year 6 months ago

I dont know Arb that well. But What i do know is the lowest could get for the upcoming season is 4.5 mil. Assuming his salary stays that for the next three years, thats 13.5 mil. If he continues to improve, that salary should go up. Going over $16M in this scenario is not hard at all.
Please, correct me if I’m wrong or if I’m just missing something.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

Even if he doesn’t improve, he’s getting big raises from the $4.5M starting point. Arbitration typically goes in a 40/60/80 scale, in regards to player’s actual worth via production.

So that puts his production value, roughly (because his actual production in WAR is far greater than either side’s figure, according to $/WAR) at $11.25M/season for the Braves or $14.375M for Freeman’s arb figure.

Extrapolating out, without factoring any improvement, that’s $20.25M for his arbitration seasons via the Braves figure, or $25.875M for Freddie’s figure. But, as mentioned, his actual production merited a higher rate than either offered, The difference is not insignificant, as Fangraphs said he was worth $23.9M last year alone.

It’s not remotely unthinkable to rationally believe that Freeman could have earned $30M+ in arbitration.

-C

-C
1 year 6 months ago

I don’t think you understand how arbitration works.

He may have cleared almost six million this year, if he won the case. That puts him at about $9M in 2015 and $12M in 2016, for a total of $27M. Without any increased production…those figures could very possibly be low.

Even if the Braves had won, he was still collecting $4.5M, $6.5-7.5M, and $9-11M, without any increase in production. That’s $20M in a worst-case scenario.

I know exactly how arbitration works.

-C

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

Ok, so you just paid $48M for three arbitration years when you yourself admit he’s getting $20M-27M at the most.

Also you’re onboard for all the risk of him being a bust after that. All because he had a great season.

You might know how arbitration works but I don’t think you know how money works.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

You don’t know how baseball works, apparently. Maybe you should try golf.

He’s not getting $48M in his arbitration years. He’ll get much less than that. Average annual value is not equal to the amount he’ll make in each individual season. Your argument is fundamentally flawed.

And, yes, I’m on board with the risk, because Freddie Freeman is a stud. And he’s only 23, so he’s going to continue to be a stud for a very long time.

I’d much rather give a 23-year-old $20M+ per season (well, he won’t actually make $20M+ until he’s in his late 20s, because he’s not making $16M/year in his arbitration years…had better state that twice for you) than a 35-year-old, or a 40-year-old.

-C

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

Nope, my argument is still sound. Overpaid 3 arb years so you could sign him to 5 free agent years.

All so you can lock up a 23 year old “stud” who had an untenable .371 BABIP year.

I hope it works out for you.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

So he’s getting paid $25.625M in arbitration. Not $48M, as you previously mentioned.

So I guess they didn’t overpay for those arbitration seasons, did they??

-C

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

Nope, my argument is still sound. Overpaid 3 arb years so you could sign him to 5 free agent years.

All so you can lock up a 23 year old “stud” who had an untenable .371 BABIP year.

I hope it works out for you.

TheTruth
1 year 6 months ago

You overpay for arbitration years to get reasonable extension years. Freeman is definitely clearing $16 million a year if he hits the open market.

kungfucampby
1 year 6 months ago

But he doesn’t hit the open market for 3 more years. He’s a young player who had one fantastic BABIP’y year.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

Actually, he doesn’t hit the open market until 2022 now, which is why the Braves made the deal. It would be a huge blow to lose the team’s leading bat in three years, which is very possible. The closer a player gets to free agency, the less likely he is to sign a long-term extension.

The BABIP concerns are just off. Will he have a BABIP of .370 again?? Probably. He’s just like Votto – he doesn’t pop out, and he hits a ton of line drives. That’s the blueprint for sustainable BABIP. And if he BABIPs .350 instead of .370, big deal. He’s still incredible.

-C

itstheduke
1 year 6 months ago

Are you kidding me? No way the Braves would give him that much so soon. The deal is actually $1 mil in ’14, $10 mil in ’15, and $89 mil in ’16.

Koufax Holmes
1 year 6 months ago

You kind of just stole bob’s joke and changed the numbers.

itstheduke
1 year 6 months ago

I didn’t “steal” anything. It was a good joke, and I was just rolling with it, that’s all. I think you (and whoever else downvoted me) is taking things way too seriously. Lighten up!

Koufax Holmes
1 year 6 months ago

In that case, “No way the Braves would backload his arbitration years like that! The deal is actually $98 mil in ’14, $1 mil in ’15, and $1 mil in ’16.”

See? It just…. kind of… doesn’t work the second and third time around.

Kind of like the Orioles and pending physicals, or Grant “Ball-Four,” or the Yankees roster being old.

Defiancy
1 year 6 months ago

Hey now, the jokes about the Yankees roster being old never get old!

Koufax Holmes
1 year 6 months ago

Yes, they do. It is classless and tacky to make fun of senior citizens who are trying their best. For the last time, leave the Yankees alone. You don’t know what it’s like On Golden Pond.

itstheduke
1 year 6 months ago

Well actually you have the joke backwards now. It would be $1 mil in ’14, $1 mil in ’15, and $98 mil in ’16.

Anyway if you don’t think my reply worked as a “take-off” on Bob’s joke, then you’re certainly entitled to your opinion. If anything I suppose I’m guilty of stealing Bob’s thunder a bit. Sometimes a good joke is just best left alone to appreciate. Point taken.

Koufax Holmes
1 year 6 months ago

I was just hazing you a bit, duke.

LazerTown
1 year 6 months ago

$125/8 That could be a very good deal for the braves if he continues to keep growing. Even if it is higher price per year than he would normally get on the open market, which It looks to be about $20M per fa year, they don’t have to pay for the decline, which is key.

Paulie Corleone
1 year 6 months ago

I always giggle when I look at the Braves salary list and see B.J. Upton at 5 years $75m

Kevin Sheets
1 year 6 months ago

Really? Cause i cry

TheTruth
1 year 6 months ago

7 yr, $106 million with a vesting option? I think that’s a good deal for everybody. 2014: $6 million, 2015: $10 million, 2016-2020: $16 million, 2021: Vesting option at $19 million? That’s my guess.

Koufax Holmes
1 year 6 months ago

You win, Bob. Clever and original.

burnboll
1 year 6 months ago

Seems like a good deal for the Braves. Assuming Freeman is at least a 3WAR player each year, he will be well worth it.

And I think Freeman’s ceiling and also his most likely career path, is higher.

Rally Weimaraner
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman had an excellent 2013 no doubt but 8/125, assuming there are no club options involved, is big risk to take on a player who has only once posted an fWAR above 2.0 and did so with a .371 BABIP. Its a high risk high reward contract, hope it works out for the Braves.

burnboll
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman’s pretty young, and IMHO if you look at his playing and not just at the stat line, it looks like he’s got solid approach, solid skills.

He’s no big power guy, but I think he’ll be a very good player, could be making the All stars game a couple of times. No MVP, but could perhaps finish in the top 5-6 one or two more times.

Rally Weimaraner
1 year 6 months ago

I can see it going one of two way. I think Freeman has great plate approach and his 2013 was remarkably similar to Joey Votto’s 2009 (who happened to have a .372 BABIP in 2009). If he continues to develop it will be a steal for Atlanta but if he reverts to 2012 Freeman it will not look so good.

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman is a linedrive hitter who uses the whole field. That naturally will lead to him having a higher than average BABIP. Freeman compares very well to Mark Grace as a hitter, except Freeman has more power. Grace was a better fielder although Freeman’s not bad either.

JoeyBats13
1 year 6 months ago

Agreed it is a big risk by the Braves giving him around $125 million based off one season with an inflated BABIP. Even without the inflated BABIP he’s definitely still an above average numbers with an impressive career wOBA and wRC+. However, is he a $125 million type hitter based on that one amazing 2013 season? Very unlikely.

Plus it’s not like he plays exceptional defense as well, so if his production was skewed by his BABIP, then the Braves will probably regret this move quickly. At least he’s been durable though (600 PAs every season since 2011).

Zach Ripple
1 year 6 months ago

Can’t anything EVER go right for my Mets????

Haha, just kidding. Freddie is phenomenal player and good guy. Good for him.

JoeyBats13
1 year 6 months ago

you have Matt Harvey and David Wright dude!

NYBravosFan10
1 year 6 months ago

they also have Ike Davis and had Jordany Valdespin

Tim Bliss
1 year 6 months ago

Freeman is also a Mets killer. LOL. But like the other guy mentioned, you’ve got Wright and Harvey. Wow! I can’t stand the Mets but both Wright and Harvey are awesome players and I would kill to have them on the Braves.

TheTruth
1 year 6 months ago

I hate seeing people say that Freeman is bad defensively. He’s decent fielding the position, but he’s exceptional around the bag. He has a tremendous stretch and pulls throws out of the dirt like clockwork. First base and catcher are the two positions that I think you can’t judge by statistics, at least not entirely. You have to use the naked eye, too.

migueljablonski
1 year 6 months ago

Seriously, Freddie “splits” saved a whole bunch of dugout throws last year. Doesnt get the defensive credit he deserves IMO

rundmc1981
1 year 6 months ago

He’ll never get the def credit he deserves though he’s catching missiles from the planet’s best fielder.

diehardmets
1 year 6 months ago

Those who designed UZR admit its deficiencies at C and to a degree 1B, so you are correct.

Scott Krouse
1 year 6 months ago

Thank God the Pirates locked up Andrew McCutchen when they did. They way teams throw around $100 and $200 million like Monopoly money now means he probably would have gotten 8/220 as a free agent.

-C
1 year 6 months ago

It was a very wise move on their part. I was hoping the Braves could use his deal as a blueprint for Heyward, but it looks like that window is now long past.

-C

rundmc1981
1 year 6 months ago

No way Heyward would have signed an extension with all of the time he’s missed. I believe his camp feels like his ceiling hasn’t been reached to further maximize his value, which is why he wants to go to free agency, giving him more time to further evaluate his progress. Maybe then teams would have a better idea of his value when he hasn’t missed so much time due to unfortunate circumstances. Stinks for the Braves, but JHey has said for some time that he’s wanted to test free agency.