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rumors-dealings-128-10-am | December | 2009 Articles

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Rumors & Dealings - 12/8 (10 AM)

Written by Joe Lucia on .

Lots of rumors circulating around the net in the aftermath of Rafael Soriano accepting his arbitration offer, lets take a look at some of them. -Soriano is apparently going to ask for a trade. If this actually does happen, it at least gives the Braves a player who could fill another hole the Braves have. If Soriano ISN'T traded however, is it really a bad thing? Look at all the members of the Braves pen that have had injury issues: Wagner, Saito, Moylan, Soriano, not to mention dark horses like Scott Proctor and Lee Hyde. I want all the live arms I can possibly get in that pen, because as I mentioned in my update 10 hours ago, I'd really not have to rely on Manny Acosta, Mariano Gomez, and Juan Perez. DO NOT WANT. -The Braves are pushing hard to trade Derek Lowe, but theres more interest in Javier Vazquez. Thats not cool. We could probably get a higher return for Vazquez, even if he is a free agent after the 2010 season and would essentially be a rental. Lowe is due $45 million over the next 3 seasons, and that contract is really going to be tough to move. If the Braves want to get anyone of value for Lowe, they'd have to pick up a sizable bit of that deal. If the team is going to be paying say $25 million in a sunk cost to Lowe if he's traded, why not just keep him unless the player acquired is a low cost type of guy that won't command a lot of money? This is more something that JC Bradbury over at Sabernomics should discuss, because I am a horrible economics student. -The Braves have no interest in trading Kenshin Kawakami. This makes sense. With Takashi Saito now in the fold, and Kawakami playing a big role in getting him to Atlanta, you don't want to piss the new signing off. Plus, dumping Kawakami on another team would look real bad for the Braves efforts to establish a foothold in Japan. Imagine if you're a Japanese fan and you see that an American team dumps off one of the NPB's best pitchers this decade off on another team a year after signing him. Would you have any desire to support them? Of course not. I know this is how I felt when the Titans treated Steve McNair, my favorite NFL player, like garbage. -There is interest in both Kelly Johnson & Ryan Church, moreso Johnson. This doesn't surprise me. Johnson is a fantastic player, rough 2009 aside. Kelly didn't get much of a chance to break out of the slump he was in, and when Prado was struggling, Kelly still sat on the bench and got no playing time in September because Bobby Cox apparently loves the GRIT and HUSTLE Brooks Conrad brings to the table. I'm still firmly in the camp that the Braves should tender Johnson a contract, because he is still an extremely effective player. Prado is going to struggle next year, and if the only people that the Braves have to turn to are Omar Infante and Conrad, this team is going to be in trouble. As for Church, he's essentially a fourth outfielder. I don't see much of a reason why he should be given a contract. He was pretty much an excuse to dump the struggling Jeff Francoeur off on the Mets. He's fantastic defensively, but the Braves can't carry a defensive sub on the roster and pay him $3 million or so. It just doesn't make much sense economically. That takes care of this batch of rumors. I've come up with a creative little series I'll start posting this week that celebrates the end of the decade in Atlanta, and of course I'll be around when new rumors and rumblings surface, so keep your eyes peeled here on BravesHeart, and of course, on Twitter@BravesHeart, where I'll get immediate news up quickly before I start working on analysis.

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