says that the Braves are thinking about free agent center fielder Corey Patterson.Dave O'Brien's latest blog over at the AJC
And by the way, some folks have asked me why the Braves would consider someone like Corey Patterson (yes, theyve discussed him) for the center-field job, instead of just handing it over to rookie Josh Anderson or one of the prospects, Schafer or fringe prospect Gregor Blanco.Patterson, who has spent the past two seasons with the Orioles, is an option that has been kicked around throughout the blogosphere for quite some time now. The Atlanta-native and Scott Boras client may be looking to build up value with a one-year deal before re-trying the free agent market next year. Patterson, 28, hit .269/.304/.386 with eight home runs and 37 stolen bases in 2007, so as you can see, it was definitely a down year. The story of his career has been off-the-chart tools and performance that just doesn't match up, and he still has that potential. He's got double-digit home run power, 35+ stolen base speed, great defense, and has cut down his strikeout totals significantly in recent years. The lowered strikeouts seem to have come at the cost of some of his previous 30-home run power, however he's still respectable for a center fielder in that department. His biggest downside is plate discipline. Very much like Josh Anderson, Patterson combines high strikeouts with a low amount of walks, leading to a low OBP. Patterson was always considered to be an option for the teams who lost out on the likes of Torii Hunter or Andruw Jones, and if the price tag is within a reasonable range, it certainly seems like a reasonable option. Not much has been written so I really don't know his asking price or market value on the market, but the Braves might be willing to go out and spend a bit of money for him. If they feel Schafer is ready by mid-season and Patterson is performing well, Wren could always flip him off for prospects, which is an added plus. It's a small chance and most of that depends on the call for him, but I'd be very interesting in seeing this go down.