Major League Baseball's owner-imposed lockout may have caused offseason transactions and free agency to freeze, but that hasn't stopped the occasional rumor from popping up through concerning what teams intend to do if and when the league and the MLB Players Association ratify a new collective bargaining agreement.
Below, you can find Tuesday's rumors, news, and notes from the wide world of baseball.
Braves could move on from Freeman?
One of the biggest surprises of the offseason's first half was the lack of reported progress between the Atlanta Braves and free-agent first baseman Freddie Freeman on a new contract.
Despite Freeman being an integral part of the Braves winning the World Series last fall, there appears to be a growing sentiment around the game that the franchise legend might not return to Atlanta. Just last week, Braves legend Chipper Jones expressed his belief that Freeman might look elsewhere when the lockout is lifted. On Tuesday, ESPN's Buster Olney reported there's "a growing belief that Freeman will land somewhere outside of Atlanta." Olney included prediction from an executive:
"I think [the Braves] will move quickly to settle on an alternative and move on to get past the conversation," one official said.
Freeman is reportedly seeking a six-year deal. The Braves, for their part, have countered with a five-year proposal worth $135 million. For comparison's sake, Paul Goldschmidt signed a five-year pact worth $130 million after joining the St. Louis Cardinals in 2019 -- and that was before he reached free agency.
Given that Freeman is a free agent and that three years have passed, it stands to reason that Freeman deserves more than an additional $5 million tacked on top.
Back in November, CBS Sports highlighted five teams who could have interest in Freeman if he decides to leave Atlanta. That group included the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Texas Rangers, and the New York Yankees.
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As for the Braves, they've already expressed interest in trading for Oakland Athletics first baseman Matt Olson. Should Atlanta fall short in its pursuit on that front, general manager Alex Anthopoulos could pivot to signing Anthony Rizzo as a stopgap.
Either way, it would mark a disappointing end to Freeman's run with the Braves. In 12 seasons with the franchise, he's hit for a 138 OPS+ and has accumulated 43 Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball-Reference's estimations.