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Friday, March 16, 2007

CF Andruw Jones

One of the greatest centerfielders in Braves franchise history is also about to finish his career with some other team. Face it, the Bravers just don't have any extra money to give Andruw what he is probably going to demand ($18-$20 million per year). Besides that, why would any team, much less the Braves, want to sign a .270 hitter with declining defensive skills for that kind of dough? Plus, the Bill James Handbook rates Andruw at a "high" injury risk. With all those balls he dives for, he's bound to injure himself badly sooner or later.

Just thought I'd get that off my chest.

My bet is that Andruw will continue to produce like he has lately. There's no reason for me to believe that he won't. He'll get his payday after the season, and the Braves will lose their best center fielder since Dale Murphy. The best courses of action depend on how the team does in 2007:

If the Braves are in contention by July: Andruw stays with the team to help them get to the playoffs, because he'll be concentrating more to get better stats and a big payday (or so they say), and the Braves won't get anything in return.
If the Braves are way out of contention by July: Find a team who will take Andruw for one or two blue-chip prospects so that the Braves get something for Jones in order to reload for 2008.

BP: .277, 35 HR, 103 RBI, .899 OPS, 5 SB
BJH: .264, 40 HR, 113 RBI, .882 OPS, 5 SB
RW: .266, 43 HR, 122 RBI, .912 OPS, 6 SB
SN: .263, 43 HR, 126 RBI, .894 OPS, 5 SB

Sam's Projection: .265, 38 HR, 115 RBI, .904 OPS, 5 SB

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