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andruw-wants-to-stay-in-atlanta | September | 2007 Articles

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Andruw Wants to Stay in Atlanta

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This seems to be almost a monthly event. Andruw Jones coming out in the media and saying he would like to stay with Atlanta beyond this year. In a recent SI.com article, the 30-year old center fielder said if the Braves want him back next year, he'll be back. I don't doubt that he wants to stay here or that he would love to finish his career in Atlanta. I do however doubt that those feelings are strong enough for him to give the Braves the kind of discount they would need to sign him long-term. Everyone remembers Andruw going behind Scott Boras' back and re-signing with the Braves for his last deal, but that possibility has already been shot down by both Boras and Andruw. Jones' year-long slump is surely going to drive down the $18+ million that most around baseball believed he could make on his next contract, but his agent is Scott Boras, so don't think the Braves will be able to afford him. There are two options for Andruw this off-season. He can either sign long-term at a lower price or sign a one-year contract to try and build up some value again before hitting the free agent market in 2009. The latter one is a tactic used quite a bit by Boras clients coming off of down years, including Jeff Weaver most recently. Scott Boras would probably have a pretty easy time getting Andruw a five or six-year deal worth around $15 million per season. After all he is just one year removed from two straight 40-home run seasons, has nine-straight gold gloves, and even batting only .222, Jones has hit 25 homers and broken the 90-RBI mark. The question becomes; do they risk dropping his value drastically by signing a one-year pact? One one hand, he could get right back up to 40 homers and go sign the 6-year $108 million deal, but if he were to struggle yet again, his value would plummet. I might be able to see a one-year deal with Atlanta for around $13 million, but that is assuming another team wouldn't offer more. Even with such an awful year, you know there are going to be teams lining up with their checkbooks out. Thank you for having your heart here Andruw, but I just don't think you are going to get what you're looking for.

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