Taking a look at the Braves core and their current contracts

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In case you missed it last night, the Braves did it again, inking Michael Harris to an eight-year, $72 million contract.

The deal also comes with two club options, so really, the Braves have ten years of team control of one of the brightest young stars in the game.

I mean, has a team ever built a statue for their general manager before? I’m not aware of one, but if there is someone deserving, it’s Alex Anthopoulos. He’s already helped deliver the city of Atlanta its first championship since 1995, and he’s setting up the Braves to win several more in the future.

Harris is just the latest to sign a lengthy, team-friendly contract to stay with the Braves. Austin Riley inked a ten-year extension just a few weeks ago, Matt Olson signed one this offseason, and it only took a few months for Ronald Acuña and Ozzie Albies to commit to the franchise long-term. With a couple more extensions, the entire team will be locked in for nearly the rest of this decade.

Just look at the Braves core and how long they are currently committed to the organization:

That is a core that will be competing for championships for the next decade.

Next up on the docket for Anthopoulos is Dansby Swanson and Max Fried. Both are key pillars of what the Braves have built. They are two of the most competitive players in the game, and losing either would be a gut punch to the entire organization.

Swanson is a free agent after this season, but re-signing him — at least on the surface — will be tricky. He’s represented by the same agency as Freddie Freeman, and we know how that turned out last time. On top of that, Swanson is having a far better season than he ever has before. The Braves could be wary of overpaying, and now Vaughn Grissom has entered the picture. I still think re-signing Swanson should be priority number one this offseason, but there are a lot of moving parts that could result in him heading elsewhere.

Fried is a free agent following next season, but there’s no way the Braves should let him hit the open market. He deserves to be paid handsomely, and the sooner Anthopoulos takes care of the situation, the better. With or without Swanson, the Braves lineup will be just fine. But if you take Fried out of the rotation, this team isn’t competing come October. He’s the leader of the staff, and the Braves need to ensure he’s in Atlanta for as long as possible.

Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

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