If Freddie Freeman Leaves Atlanta...

One of the best hitters and one of the best personalities this decade, Freddie Freeman, is a free agent. At the beginning of the offseason it seemed to be a lock that Freddie would stay a Brave. More like a lifetime Brave. His twelve remarkable years in Atlanta continued last year when he lifted the World Series trophy over his head to cap off an improbable year for one of the best seasons in Braves history.

It seemed as if Freeman would take any amount of money to stay in Atlanta. Then the lockout happened, and just like the Players Association and the League, Freddie and the Braves aren’t making progress on a deal. Because the lockout restricts players from interacting with team associates, they won’t be given much time to agree on a deal that fits both parties.

At this point in the offseason, it seems that there are growing suspicions that Freddie Freeman will put on another uniform next season. A rival executive told Buster Olney, “I think [the Braves] will move quickly to settle on an alternative and move on to get past the conversation." There are definitely not a lack of current potential suitors that need a star first baseman like Freddie.

Here are few teams that should pursue Freddie Freeman

1.) Boston Red Sox

The turn around year Boston had in 2021 could not be expected. Players like Hunter Renfroe, Kike Hernandez and Alex Verdugo were just a few of the guys that stepped up for the Sox to lead them to a 92-70 record and a League Championship Series appearance. With four potential postseason teams coming out of the AL East, the Red Sox want to detach themselves from the pack and lock themselves into first place in the division come 2022. Before the lockout, the Atlanta Braves offered Freddie Freeman a five-year, $135-million deal, meaning Freeman would like six years in his new deal, according to Olney. For the start of the 2022 season, the Red Sox’ salary cap sits at $164 million. With the luxury tax set at $210 million in 2021, Boston has some room to maneuver. In 2021, the 26-year old first baseman Bobby Dalbec, slashed .240/.298/.494 and twenty five home runs with Boston. After an inconsistent 2021, the Red Sox have to gamble on Dalbec to be able to hold down first base for 162 games in 2022.

2.) New York Yankees

It seems like the Yankees are always in the mix to sign every big free agent. But this one is a real possibility. After many, many disappointing seasons in a row, the Yankees will do anything to get to their first Fall Classic since 2009. In the 2022 offseason, that starts with some certainty in the infield. Move Gleyber to Second? Sign back Rizzo? Sign a star shortstop? Who’s going to play Third? For Yankees fans, these questions started after the last pitch in a disappointing loss in the AL Wild Card game against the rival Red Sox. Freddie Freeman’s bat in between Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge could balance out the lineup and provide the Yankees with another run producer. Freddie’s low strikeout rate (15%) would help improve the team total of the Yankees last season (24%). Batter strikeouts have been a weakness of the Yankees in recent years with both Stanton and Judge having been leaders of that category in past seasons. With the addition of a lefty bat meant for the short porch in right field, Freddie Freeman is the guy the Yankees have been looking for.

3.) Los Angeles Dodgers

The Dodgers have had a very eventful last few years. Winning the Covid-shortened 2020 World Series, being involved in one of the biggest trades the sport has seen and calling up one successful minor league after another. The Dodgers are World Series contenders every year. Next year could be a different story. So far this offseason, Dodger fans have seen Corey Seager and Max Scherzer move on to new teams. There is now an open spot in the Dodger infield and with the DH coming to the National League, they could use another valuable hitter. 2021 Dodger first baseman Max Muncy or the aging Justin Turner can be slotted at DH. Trea Turner and Justin Turner are both free agents after the 2022 season. This could be the start of a busy couple years for the Los Angeles Dodgers, and it should start with the acquisition of Freddie Freeman.

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