The Atlanta Braves are one of the best ran organizations in all of sports. From top to bottom, the club is efficient, thorough, and attentive. There isn’t a single facet of the franchise that is poorly run, and it’s why they sit in 2022 with a championship window wide open. Alex Anthopoulos deserves a bulk of the credit, but he couldn’t do what he does so well without his subordinates, specifically Dana Brown, who is responsible for bringing in players like Michael Harris II and Spencer Strider.
Brown was also responsible for Atlanta selecting Shea Langeliers, who was a key piece in the trade to acquire Matt Olson. Langeliers plays elite defense and his bat is no slouch either, but the prize of Strider and Harris are the gems. Both rookies have an argument for the best first-year player in the league this year. Strider is already showing signs of being a dominant ace, and Harris is displaying Silver Slugger and Gold Glove potential.
“I remember Dana telling me he was a top-five high-school bat in the draft — he wrote it in his report as well — and that we had to take him,” Alex Anthopoulos said. “He wasn’t highly touted at all and Dana wanted to take him in the third round. I remember asking him if he was sure we needed to take him that high and he was adamant. He did the same thing with Spencer Strider (the Braves’ fourth-round pick) in 2020. I’ve been with him a long time and when he’s that convicted I stay out of the way.”
The team’s scouting director is excellent at his job; the proof is in the pudding. However, if you need more proof, Dana Brown loudly voiced his opinion about the team signing Tyler Matzek, who was a hero in the Braves’ run to the World Series in 2021.
“One other time he pounded for us to sign a player was Tyler Matzek when he was in Indy ball. It was August (2019), minor league season was about to be over and he wouldn’t let it go so we signed him to a two-year minor-league contract. Dana doesn’t bat 1.000, no one does but when he’s passionate about something, I’ve learned the smart move is to listen.”
Jim Bowden of The Athletic had 25 predictions for the MLB offseason; Dana Brown leaving Atlanta to be the general manager in Detroit under team president Scott Harris of the Tigers was one of them. The Braves are one of the best run organizations in sports, and it’s lesser-known individuals like Brown and Ron Washington that make all the difference. You can’t be mad when an individual leaves for a better opportunity, but it would surely be a devastating blow to the Braves front office.
Photographer: Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire