Tag: Atlanta Braves

MLB News: Braves Big Day, Sign Donaldson and McCann

The proverbial ‘stove’ was set aflame earlier today as the Braves announced the re-signing of catcher Brian McCann to a one-year, $2 Million deal, as well as the signing of third baseman Josh Donaldson to a one-year $23 Million pact.

The club has officially filled their two largest needs, and has grabbed the fan bases’ attention a great deal in acquiring a top Free Agent, as well as signing an old fan favorite.

The acquisition of Josh Donaldson is sure to have Atlanta buzzing, for when the Bringer of Rain is healthy, he is a force to be reckoned with — though many will say that his age will force regression upon him. Atlanta’s General Manager, Alex Anthropolis, had expressed his disinterest early on in signing a Manny Machado or Bryce Harper type, especially seeing as long term deals do tend to bare quite a risk further on down the line, see Albert Pujols, Chris Davis, and so on. But, at a one-year deal, this addition bares no substantial risk for the Braves, while also providing Donaldson his moneys worth.

McCann is expected to have an effect both in the clubhouse and on the field. His exceptional career spans far past his catching skills, seeing as his offensive numbers are certainly nothing to scoff at. Over his fourteen year career, McCann has produced a .263/.338/.454 slash with 270 career big flies. While it is true that his bat is not what it used to be, it can be said that the catcher is due for a bounce back — especially when his new team is the same club that he made six consecutive All-Star appearances with starting as far back as 2005.

The Braves certainly have staked their claim this offseason, and are only just getting started…

MLB Free Agent Feature: Dallas Keuchel

Within this segment, we’ll be breaking down the careers of the top Free Agents on the market. How did they get here? What makes them so enticing to teams? Where could they end up? Let’s find out.

This time around, we have the most decorated starting pitcher on the market. He is a Cy Young Award winner, a three time gold glover, and a World Series Champion. He is Dallas Keuchel.

Discovering Dallas…

Dallas Keuchel, a southpaw from Tulsa, Oklahoma, attended the University of Arkansas, and, after finishing his career there, was eventually drafted by the Houston Astros in the 7th round of the 2009 MLB draft.

Keuchel was never expected to amount to anything great. He debuted in 2012, and  spent his first few years of the the majors in mediocrity. However, in 2014, Keuchel broke out vigorously, putting up a 2.93 ERA and a total of five complete games throughout the 2014 season. Keuchel followed this display up with an even better 2015, where he hurled his way to a 2.48 ERA in 33 starts and a league leading 232 innings pitched. This success awarded Keuchel with a Cy Young, as well as the title of ‘Ace’ for the Houston Astros franchise. The Ace did stumble in 2016 however, where he was labored with injury, and could only manage to squeeze out a 4.55 ERA and an alarming 86 ERA+. Then, in what was another injury labored season, Keuchel returned to prior form, posting a 2.90 ERA over only 145.2 innings pitched in 2017. This past year looked promising for Keuchel’s health, and, while he managed to throw a full 204.2 innings, his other numbers certainly weren’t eye-popping.

Who are the Suitors?

Dallas is sure to draw a great deal of interest, even through the injury concerns and signs of regression. The reason? When Kid Keuchy is on, he is ON. In fact, there’s almost no stopping him. When he gets into a groove, he really dominates, and it is this quality that puts him so high up on certain teams’ lists.

There are quite a few clubs that should be inquiring for Keuchel’s services, the forefront of those clubs being the Milwaukee Brewers, the Washington Nationals, and, his former team, the Houston Astros. However, there are also some other teams with outside shots, such as the Atlanta Braves, the Philadelphia Phillies, and even the Cincinnati Reds, who are expected to be big players on the starting pitching market this year. As well as these teams, I would go ahead and add in any of the teams that miss on Corbin, seeing as Keuchel would fill a similar role on any staff.

There are many teams that make sense in the Keuchel sweepstakes, but only one team can walk away the winner. Who will it be?

My Prediction: The Milwaukee Brewers, 4 Years, $70 Million

 

MLB Free Agent Feature: Patrick Corbin

Within this segment, we’ll be breaking down the careers of the top Free Agents on the market. How did they get here? What makes them so enticing to teams? Where could they end up? Let’s find out.

This time, we’re deep diving on our first pitcher of the year — the slick, slider-filled Southpaw: Patrick Corbin.

Corbin Cracks the Code…

Patrick Alan Corbin, a long time New York native, was born in Clay, New York on July 19, 1989. He spent his High Schooling days at Cicero — North Syracuse, where he did not begin pitching until his Junior year. He then graduated and moved on to Mohawk Valley Community College, and soon after transferred to Chipola College for his Sophomore season, where he was a bold standout, and drew a good deal of interest. It was this interest that allowed Corbin to go in the second round of the 2009 MLB Draft after being selected by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Angels then shipped Corbin to the Diamondbacks in 2010 as a piece of a package for the journeyman Dan Haren, and Corbin then debuted in 2012.

Corbin began his Major League career as well as one could expect. After having struggled in his 17 starts of 2012, he quickly showed the world his potential in 2013, where he was named to the 2013 All-Star team and turned in a 3.41 ERA over 32 starts with a 1.16 WHIP. However, for every up, there is a down, and Corbin’s down was missing the 2014 season due to a torn UCL, which required the infamous Tommy John Surgery to fix. Corbin returned to the rotation in 2015 with noticeably less shimmer and shine, and was removed from his role as a starter mid-2016 — only to be added back at the start of the 2017 season. And then, in 2018, Corbin blossomed. In a year of many, many dominant pitchers, Corbin was right up there with the best of them. His ERA ranked in the top 15 of qualifying starters and third among lefties at 3.15, his strikeout rate improved drastically (246 K’s in 200IP), and, most importantly, he was healthy.

Who Will Bid Higher?

After his excellent 2018, Corbin is ready to receive a massive payday — so who’s buying?

To me, this one seems like an easy lock. Corbin has not been shy about his preference to play with the New York Yankees, and the Bronx Bombers have mirrored that interest. However, that has not stopped other teams from revealing their interest. Said interested clubs include the Philadelphia Phillies, Houston Astros, Atlanta Braves, Los Angeles Angels, and many, many more.

I will be shocked if Corbin ends up with another team that is not named the Yankees, but stranger things have happened…

My Prediction: The New York Yankees, 5 years, $105 Million