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bringing-back-glavine | September | 2007 Articles

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Bringing Back Glavine?

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This is the second year in a row that the idea of the Braves bringing back Tom Glavine has surfaced. Last year the question was whether the veteran southpaw wanted to get his 300th win as a member of Braves, the team he spent his first 16 seasons with. As he played out his heart-wrenching decision through the media, I maintained - and still do - that he had no intention of taking a discount to return to the Braves and was only using the press for leverage against the New York. What a surprise, Glavine signed a one-year $10.5 million deal with the Mets with a player option for 2008, worth up to $13 million depending on his innings pitched this year (he'll more than likely reach it). ESPN.com reported that Glavine is leaning towards playing another year and his family is also behind him, which bears the question: Where? I've discussed the options for adding another starter this off-season. Most have been trade scenarios involving either Yunel Escobar or Edgar Renteria so far, but if Glavine hits the open market, he immediately becomes one of the top arms available, but only to two teams. Money was an issue last year with John Schuerholz having to navigate carefully around a pretty strict $80 million payroll. After the sale to Liberty Media, the task of the team's finances went from a Time-Warner board room to that of Braves President Terry McGuirk. The team is being run as a business though, so don't expect the Braves front office to be able to drop $140 million a season now. That still leaves money to work with this off-season presumably and still one spot open in the starting rotation. Could the Braves pony up and offer Glavine $10-12 million for one year? It seems reasonable enough, especially since Schuerholz seems to be putting all his chips in for a 2008 World Series ring. The only way we are really going to see anything develop out of this is if John Schuerholz isn't able to work the trade market and move Renteria for a starter. With Yunel in the mix for next season, unloading Renteria's contract should be pretty high up on his to-do list. We speculate about names now but once the winter meetings come around, the speculation could prove to be completely unfounded. In this market for decent starting pitching, there really might not be any options. At that point, the Glavine talk could get a lot more serious. Going from one lefty in the rotation to three the next year would be quite a change. Personally, I would love to see Glavine in a Braves uniform for one more season before he enters the Hall with an "A" on his hat. He would be a perfect pitcher to slot in right behind Hudson and Smoltz that could give the team 200 innings and a chance every time he takes the ball.

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