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Why Jason Heyward might not be here on Opening Day


Joremarid
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Regarding prospects, Frank Wren has a saying: “Players will tell us when they’re ready.” Regarding Jason Heyward, Bobby Cox said over the winter: “He might be one who doesn’t have to go through the usual channels.” But even as we on the periphery seek to project the career path of the sport’s latest phenom, we cannot lose sight of one silly but sobering baseball truth:

It makes financial sense for Heyward not to start 2010 on the Opening Day roster.

Rob Neyer of ESPN.com outlines this oddity by referring to a post of Bryan Smith’s on FanGraphs. Smith likens Heyward to Evan Longoria, and it’s an apt comparison: Longoria was the No. 1 prospect of 2008, just as Heyward is the top of the class of 2010.

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The Rays won the AL East (and the AL pennant) in 2008 with Longoria coming up on April 12 and providing an .874 OPS. The Rays finished with 97 wins.

It's highly unlikely that the Braves will come close to 97 wins. The most optimistic projections give the Braves 89 wins. That may or may not be enough to win a division or a wild card.

If Heyward is the best option for RF on April 1, and he's not with the ball club, and the team misses the playoffs by a game or two, the fans should and would be outraged.

The difference between Heyward and Strasburg is that the Nationals will not be contenders this season, with or without him. The Braves should be contenders.

Edited by K26dp
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here are the Braves contract obligations from this year through 2012 for OF's

McLouth: 2010 - 5 Mil, 2011 - 7 Mil, 2012 - Club Option at 10.65 Mil or 1.25 buyout

Cabrera: 2010 - 3.1 Mil, 2011 & 2012 - ARB

Diaz: 2010 - 2.55 Mil, 2011 - ARB

Schafer & Blanco signed 1 year contracts for this year.

So if the Braves don't offer ARB to Melky and Diaz they could have a starting OF for 2011 as Heyward, McLouth, & Schafer

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This is all totally ********. If Heyward is as good as he appears he will get a big time long-term contract years before he ever gets a chance to become a free agent making it a moot point. We saw this with McCann. He got locked up after only a couple full years in the majors and he was still 2 years away from becoming a free agent. The same will happen with Heyward.

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This is all totally ********. If Heyward is as good as he appears he will get a big time long-term contract years before he ever gets a chance to become a free agent making it a moot point. We saw this with McCann. He got locked up after only a couple full years in the majors and he was still 2 years away from becoming a free agent. The same will happen with Heyward.

BINGO!!

Bradley stinks and is almost ALWAYS wrong with his predictions. I suspect Heyward to be the opening day right fielder simply because Bradley said he wouldn't be...that is enough reason in itself to expect it to happen.

Edited by R.C. Collins
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This is all totally ********. If Heyward is as good as he appears he will get a big time long-term contract years before he ever gets a chance to become a free agent making it a moot point. We saw this with McCann. He got locked up after only a couple full years in the majors and he was still 2 years away from becoming a free agent. The same will happen with Heyward.

while I agree 100% that will be the Braves outlook on it I just have 1 rebuttal.

Boras.

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He's an agent, not the boogy-man. The Braves have shown that they have no problems working with Boras clients.

oh I know just saying if I remember correctly(which is a big if lately) he does not like to sign contracts before arb. he likes to hit arb and then FA as quickly as possible. Know I will never say never but with the hype+potential of a Heyward Boras may want mega millions ASAP. And with all of that said if (which is already looks) he is the best RF out of camp he should start and we should ride the JHey ride as long as we can.

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oh I know just saying if I remember correctly(which is a big if lately) he does not like to sign contracts before arb. he likes to hit arb and then FA as quickly as possible. Know I will never say never but with the hype+potential of a Heyward Boras may want mega millions ASAP. And with all of that said if (which is already looks) he is the best RF out of camp he should start and we should ride the JHey ride as long as we can.

Actually, if the offer is reasonable, Boras often gets his clients deals that take him through the arbitration years. Boras understands that even if arbitration could potentially get more money, it's still playing under one-year contracts.

You are right though that he doesn't want his clients giving up any free agent years.

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Actually, if the offer is reasonable, Boras often gets his clients deals that take him through the arbitration years. Boras understands that even if arbitration could potentially get more money, it's still playing under one-year contracts.

You are right though that he doesn't want his clients giving up any free agent years.

gotcha. ok well always a joy to be wrong. Hopefully I will be

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  • 2 weeks later...

As usual another great call by Bradley. Everytime he makes a prediction I know to expect the exact opposite. Bradley could be the worst sports writer for the AJC right now. Terrible.

Also, does anyone else notice that Bradley likes to bring up that Smoltz got his feelings hurt by something Bradley wrote about him years and years ago like Smoltz is bitter toward him? I for one have never heard Smoltz say a word about this happening yet Bradley has written about it probably 3 times in the past year.....who is the real bitter one Bradley! SMoltz called him out on one of his BS articles and Bradley is still mad that Smoltz pointed it out.

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Guest Gritz

As usual another great call by Bradley. Everytime he makes a prediction I know to expect the exact opposite. Bradley could be the worst sports writer for the AJC right now. Terrible.

Also, does anyone else notice that Bradley likes to bring up that Smoltz got his feelings hurt by something Bradley wrote about him years and years ago like Smoltz is bitter toward him? I for one have never heard Smoltz say a word about this happening yet Bradley has written about it probably 3 times in the past year.....who is the real bitter one Bradley! SMoltz called him out on one of his BS articles and Bradley is still mad that Smoltz pointed it out.

Bradley being called the worst AJC sportswriter is like being called the most ******** Saints fan.

There is so much competition.

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anybody see Bradley's latest article.. i wont link it to give him the clicks but here is the first sentence:

"Let's hear it for the cheapskate Braves, and let's, in honor of the occasion, remove the adjective."

I mean it's not like we are the Marlins, Pirates, or Padres. We do still have a 90-100 million payroll. I get frustrated with the team and lack of moves too but they are far from "cheapskates". He is just another typical AJC writer trying to stir the pot to get exposure.

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anybody see Bradley's latest article.. i wont link it to give him the clicks but here is the first sentence:

"Let's hear it for the cheapskate Braves, and let's, in honor of the occasion, remove the adjective."

I mean it's not like we are the Marlins, Pirates, or Padres. We do still have a 90-100 million payroll. I get frustrated with the team and lack of moves too but they are far from "cheapskates". He is just another typical AJC writer trying to stir the pot to get exposure.

Exactly, best thing we can do is ignore his articles, I'm so sick of Mark Bradley and trying to lure people in which his ridiculous articles. Sure we all would like the Braves to spend more, but I'm sure the organization would also like to see more butts in seats as well.

But anyway, it was pretty obvious to me that if they really felt good about Heyward he was going to make the opening day lineup. It would be foolish for Wren to do anything different. Since Wren has been here we haven't made the playoffs once, what makes MB think Wren will even be around 6 years from now when Heyward has a chance at free agency. Wren desperately needs to make some kind of impact soon or people will start calling for his head. With that being said, my personal feelings about Wren is hes doing a good job considering the circumstances, I haven't agreed with every decision and even got a bit frustrated with him with the Smoltz situation last season, but overall hes made some good decisions and hasn't traded the farm to bring in talent.

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Exactly, best thing we can do is ignore his articles, I'm so sick of Mark Bradley and trying to lure people in which his ridiculous articles. Sure we all would like the Braves to spend more, but I'm sure the organization would also like to see more butts in seats as well.

But anyway, it was pretty obvious to me that if they really felt good about Heyward he was going to make the opening day lineup. It would be foolish for Wren to do anything different. Since Wren has been here we haven't made the playoffs once, what makes MB think Wren will even be around 6 years from now when Heyward has a chance at free agency. Wren desperately needs to make some kind of impact soon or people will start calling for his head. With that being said, my personal feelings about Wren is hes doing a good job considering the circumstances, I haven't agreed with every decision and even got a bit frustrated with him with the Smoltz situation last season, but overall hes made some good decisions and hasn't traded the farm to bring in talent.

I think Wren has done a great job. Last year was really the first year the team was all his and we won 86 games. Can't really blame him for the 2008 team that won only 72 games. Most of that team was already put together by Schuerholz when Wren got the job.

And yes Mark Bradley is the new Terence Moore.

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