Thursday, January 8, 2009

Frank Wren is an Idiot

Frank Wren is the general manager of the Atlanta Braves. He has not had a stellar offseason. With certain contracts coming off the books, the Braves supposedly have somewhere in the neighborhood of $30 million to spend. In the past two months, the Braves targeted three free agents:

  • Unwilling to meet the price in prospects, Jake Peavy still pitches for San Diego.

  • Outbid by New York, A.J. Burnett is a Yankee.

  • After agreeing to a handshake deal, Rafael Furcal used the numbers to get a better offer from the Dodgers

I'm actually okay with the outcomes above, as Wren was right to not give up the farm for Peavy. A.J. Burnett is a DL stint waiting to happen. Furcal is on the wrong side of thirty and not worth a long term contract.

But today comes news that John Smoltz has signed with the Red Sox. Coming off shoulder surgery, the deal is for $5.5 million and incentives. The Braves reportedly were not willing to go higher than a base salary of $3 million. So basically a team that can't give away $30 million dollars won't throw $2.5 million of it at a pitcher who's spent his entire career with Braves for what will probably be his victory lap before retirement.

Yeah, he's been hurt. But for everything he's done for the franchise Smoltz deserves a bone from the only organization he's ever thrown a major league pitch for. Beyond that, there's the public relations angle: Wren's going to be the guy who dissed Smoltz over what the Braves pay a backup infielder.

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