Braves: Opinions on Chipper Jones’ latest comments and Freddie Freeman’s frustration

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The Braves are an organization that doesn’t let nearly any news leave the building before it is official. Combine that with the lockout, and there has been absolutely zero new information when it comes to the free agency of Freddie Freeman… until now.

As our Jake Gordon reported earlier today, Braves legend Chipper Jones made an appearance on 92.9 The Game’s Dukes & Bell, and of course, the conversation quickly shifted to Freddie Freeman, with who Jones notably has a good friendship. Jones admitted he hasn’t talked to Freeman in a while, but he did provide some insight that has yet to be revealed.

These words confirm a lot of the hunches many have had about Freeman’s situation. Like I’ve said several times throughout this process, these contract negotiations should have been signed, sealed, and delivered before the start of last season. It’s no surprise that Freeman was unhappy about going into the final season of his contract without an extension, especially given all he’s done for the Braves organization.

Because of this, everyone with money is interested in his services, and it doesn’t help that rich clubs like the Red Sox, Dodgers, and Yankees also have an opening at first base. As Jones puts it, “he’s being courted by some of the prettiest girls on the block right now, he’s going to listen to them.”

The Braves decided to gamble last offseason by not giving Freeman a contract. Right now, they are regretting that decision in the worst way possible. Even if they are able to retain their star first baseman, it will be at a much higher price than they would have had to pay him last offseason. It’s also very possible that they lose the bidding war altogether and are forced to scramble to find a replacement before the start of the season.

Essentially, these comments from Jones confirm Braves fans’ worst nightmares. There’s a very real possibility Freeman leaves for greener pastures in free agency, but there is one thing that Jones said that should give Braves fans hope, “I know he’s a West Coast guy. I know he has a home here in Atlanta. But Freddie, if he wants to play for the Atlanta Braves, will be playing for the Atlanta Braves. I’ll leave it at that.”

It may not be a year’s worth of salary, but Freeman has made it clear that he wants to remain in Atlanta. The legacy that he leaves here is important to him, so I do believe he would be willing to take some kind of hometown discount. With that being said, if the Braves don’t bring their best offer to the table once the lockout ends, this could be a situation that comes to a resolution quickly and not in the Braves’ favor.

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