David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution offers his opinion on what the Braves should do about Andruw Jones and Derek Lowe.
O’Brien actually advocates a minimal signing of Jones, following his inevitable release from the Dodgers. Because of his strong desire to return to Atlanta, O’Brien feels that Jones would take even a minor-league contract with an invite to Spring Training.
What’s the worst that could happen? He’d stink in spring training and the Braves could, once and for all, wash their hands of him. Fans would know they gave him another shot and it didn’t work out…
…Hey, don’t get your hopes up. I wouldn’t count on Jones being more than a shell of what he once was. But it’s probably worth a shot.
O’Brien feels that signing Lowe is almost imperative for the Braves’ chance of being a postseason contender, and feels that having offered A.J. Burnett $80MM, there’s no reason not to spend on Lowe:
If the Braves were willing to throw that kind of money at a pitcher as injury-plagued and relatively unaccomplished as Burnett, then shouldn’t they make at least a four-year-plus-option offer at a similar average salary for Lowe?
It’s hard to fault his logic. Lowe is a reliable workhorse with a nice postseason resume and isn’t anywhere near the injury risk that Burnett is. Lowe’s age may be a deterrent, but should it really be any scarier to a team than Burnett’s health issues?