Braves: Dansby Swanson signs with the Chicago Cubs

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Braves Country has now lost fan favorites in back-to-back offseasons. Last Winter, it was Freddie Freeman. And now, according to Jeff Passan, the Chicago Cubs are finalizing a deal with Dansby Swanson worth a reported $177 million over seven years.

Swanson signing for $25 million per season just shows how crazy this free agent market has been this offseason. The Braves were reportedly offering a deal worth six years, averaging $16-17 million per season. If he were to return to Atlanta on a sweetheart deal, he’d leave more than $70 million on the table, which is obviously a lot of money.

I recently talked about which city would Braves fans most hate to see Dansby Swanson land. And of all the clubs connected to him, the Cubs aren’t the worst. Chicago is in the National League, so Atlanta will certainly see Swanson, but it’s not Los Angeles or St. Louis.

The fit is obvious. The Cubs can overpay for Swanson’s services because they’re in a big market and need his intangibles. The Braves, on the other hand, don’t necessarily need it with a roster filled with leaders; Alex Anthopoulos only cares about the value — i.e., Freddie Freeman — and Swanson is garnering far more than he can produce on the field in the Braves’ eyes. The Cubs likely don’t care because of how valuable he is off the field. He is the perfect model for young players in the organization. It also makes a ton of sense for Swanson, whose new bride, Mallory Pugh, resides in Chicago and plays for the city’s professional soccer team.

It’s sad to see someone like Dansby Swanson go, but Vaughn Grissom has people within the clubhouse optimistic, and FanGraphs actually projects him to fill in nicely in 2023 if that’s the direction the Braves go.

As far as offense goes, FanGraphs actually projects Grissom to be the better player in 2023. In the 41 games he played in 2022, he posted a 121 wRC+, which was higher than Swanson, and FanGraphs believes that is sustainable, as they predict him to end 2023 with a 111 wRC+ over a full slate of games — again, higher than Swanson.

We wish the Swansons the best of luck in their next chapter unless it’s against the Braves.

Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

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