These have been the top spenders during baseball’s free agency period (according to the computations of Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, who I trust is good in math). I’ve also included each team’s major signings, in the aftermath of Detroit’s stunning six-year, $$132.75 million contract for Justin Upton.
• Chicago Cubs: $276.25 million. Big deals: Outfielder Jason Heyward (8 years, $184 million); infielder Ben Zobrist (4 years, $56 million); pitcher John Lackey (2 years, $32 million).
• Detroit: $272.25 million. Big deals: Outfielder Justin Upton (6 years, $132.75 million); pitcher Jordan Zimmermann (5 years, $110 million).
• San Francisco: $272.25 million. Big deals: Pitcher Johnny Cueto (6 years, $130 million); pitcher Jeff Samardzija (5 years, $90 million); outfielder Denard Span (3 years, $31 million).
• Boston: $230 million. Big deals: Pitcher David Price (7 years, $217 million).
• Baltimore: $214.8 million. Big deals: First baseman Chris Davis (7 years, $161 million); pitcher Darren O’Day (4 years, $31 million).
• Arizona: $206.5 million. Big deals: Pitcher Zach Grienke (6 years, $206.5 million).
• Kansas City: $178.5 million. Big deals: Outfielder Alex Gordon (4 years, $72 million); pitcher Ian Kennedy (5 years, $70 million); pitcher Joakim Soria (3 years, $25 million).
Here’s what the Braves have done in major league free agency, according to Spotrac, one of many websites tracking these things:
• Braves: 7 players for deals totaling $18.4 million. Little deals: Catcher Tyler Flowers (2 years, $5.3 million); catcher A.J. Pierzynski (1 year, $3 million); pitcher Jim Johnson (1 year, $2.5 million); pitcher Bud Norris (1 year, $2.5 million); second baseman Kelly Johnson (1 year, $2 million); pitcher Alexi Ogando (1 year, $2 million); pitcher Jhoulys Chacin (1 year, $1.1 million).
Braves general manager John Coppolella told me Tuesday he had “interest” in “one or two” of the major free agents on the market. Rosenthal reported the Braves had interest in bringing back Upton. But there’s a big difference between a team having interest and being willing to extend itself financially.
The Braves have been burned by big deals in the past. Should we take this to mean they won’t be aggressive in the free agent market ever again, or at least in the near future?
I asked Coppolella that question. His response can be found in the full column on MyAJC.com, which is linked here.
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