The first domino has fallen.
Josh Donaldson and the Atlanta Braves have agreed to a one year, $23 million dollar deal, pending a physical. Wow.
Donaldson, 32, is three years removed from his 2015 AL MVP season and had hit 30 home runs in three straight seasons prior to his injury-ridden 2018, where he only appeared in 52 games.
If there was one player who hurt their free agent stock the most this year, it was Donaldson. However, It wasn’t Donaldson’s play that hampered his chances of inking a multi-year, $100+ million dollar deal. His body failed him this year, constantly battling lingering shoulder and calf injuries throughout the season, the bringer of rain never really got a chance to shine and it lightened his wallet significantly.
The $23 million that Donaldson is set to earn will be the same amount he was granted in arbitration last year, which broke the record for the largest settlement in MLB history.
If the physical goes through, which there’s a very real chance that it won’t, the Braves have gotten one of the best third basemen in all of baseball, when healthy, for a relatively cheap deal by today standards. With the Bravos still having a very young roster, Donaldson can both be a much-needed run producer, as well as a mentor to the kids like Albies, Swanson, and Acuna.
This is a one year deal “prove it” contract for Donaldson, and if all goes well, we could see him really cash in next offseason.
The Braves have officially announced that they are going for it in 2019. With the expectation that Machado is going to the division rival Phillies, the Braves used this as their opportunity to counter the impending mega splash in the city of brotherly love. Also, when coupled with the announcement that the Braves were signing Brian McCann to a one year deal, the Braves have two proven winners on their roster to go along with the youth movement already in place.
McCann deal with #Braves is one year, $2M, sources tell The Athletic.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 26, 2018
Atlanta doesn’t have much money to spend, but there are rumblings that they’re looking to reunite with Craig Kimbrel, who is looking for a big payday. Go for broke, risk it all. Just start burning money because it’s more interesting that way.
Hotlanta is back to being a good baseball team, and I’m all for it.
Photo: Jason Miller-Getty Images