It’s bad enough that the Braves have been given the baseball equivalent of an atomic wedgie by anyone they’ve tried to sign this winter, but now they’ve got out of town writers eyeing Braves’ players like they’re the 1958 Kansas City A’s or something:
You’ve heard this story from the Dodgers and Angels in many previous summers, and you’ll probably hear it from them again this summer: We’d like to trade for a big bat.
How about Chipper Jones? The idea was floated by none other than Jones himself, in a revealing interview today with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Jones, incensed that the Braves did not match the Red Sox offer for franchise icon John Smoltz, said he might be the next one out the Atlanta door.
OK look: Jones has 10-5 rights, veterans like him hate being traded in the middle of a season, he’s the only big bat the Braves really have, and if they got rid of him at this point in his career — unlike Smoltz he’s still probably got a couple of productive years ahead of him — the entire city would turn its back on the organization. His comments yesterday were likely 45% genuine frustration at being the last guy around who remembers what it’s like to win in Atlanta and 55% lobbying the Braves for a contract extension. Finally, even if the Braves were going to consider trading Jones to the Dodgers, the package they would demand in return would probably start with Clayton Kershaw and Matt Kemp, but by no means end there. In other words, they’d demand that the Dodgers give up their very future for a half season of a player who, while fabulous when he plays, is very likely to get hurt at some point. Unless the person making the decisions for the Dodgers thinks like I do when I’m mismanaging a fantasy team, they’d hang up the phone within 11 seconds of Frank Wren voicing his demands.
Other than that, sure, great idea.