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Braves unlikely to re-sign center fielder Michael Bourn

Aug 12, 2012, 12:03 PM EDT

bourn getty Getty Images

Braves outfielder Michael Bourn has registered an impressive .291/.352/.424 slash line with 29 stolen bases and a career-high nine home runs over 524 plate appearances this season. But the impending free agent probably won’t be back in Atlanta in 2013.

According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Braves “aren’t holding out much hope that they can re-sign Bourn when he becomes a free agent” because the asking price will likely be too high.

Bourn, a client of super agent Scott Boras, was named an All-Star for the second time in his career back in July.

He’s an elite defender and should command a sizable contract on a free agent market that looks to be weak.

  1. hcf95688 - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    The Braves were so much more interesting when Ted Turner owned the team.

    • thefalcon123 - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:22 PM

      Here is a 95 minute video in which Ralph Nader and Ted Turner (along with Peter Lewis) discuss the role of wealthy liberals in political causes. This will make you re-think you use of the “interesting” when describing Ted Turner.

      http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/300422-1

      • bobulated - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:36 PM

        You’re not going to find many Atlantans that dislike Turner; say what you like about his politics but he brought not only sports success to the area but thousands of jobs with CNN, Cartoon Network, TBS, TNT, etc. As an independent I really don’t have an issue with a wealthy liberal creating jobs in my community.

      • paperlions - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:31 PM

        As an American, I don’t have any problem with any wealthy American creating jobs in American communities…..I have a problem with wealthy American’s sending jobs overseas to make themselves more wealthy and then acting like the poor economy isn’t their fault. Despite popular belief, the economy isn’t controlled by the government, it is controlled by those with the money (and whether they choose to let the rest of us have a tiny bit of it, or keep it all for themselves).

      • mrfloydpink - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:20 PM

        Way to hijack a thread to promote your conservative ideology.

        Problem is–beyond the objections already raised–that hcf said NOTHING about Turner being interesting. He said the TEAM was interesting when Turner owned them. Turner could be a fascist or a hippy or a communist or anything else you want and it would have no bearing whatsoever on whether or not the team was interesting.

      • cranbery - Aug 12, 2012 at 5:09 PM

        Much more interesting…………….

      • thefalcon123 - Aug 12, 2012 at 10:14 PM

        A’hem:

        Here was a case of terrible phrasing on my end. My point was not that it was boring…I paid $20 to attend it, but rather that Ted Turner went far beyond merely *interesting*. Unfortunately, while this made perfect sense in my head it does appear like Turner bashing now that I re-read it. My apologies.

        I assure you Mr Pink Floyd, I have no conservative ideology. For God’s sake, I still argue with people that Mark Green should have been elected Mayor of New York in 2001.

  2. innout10 - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    Cuz the Boston globe is all about Atlanta sports? Wishful thinking on his part

    • Jeremiah Graves - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:03 PM

      They used to be the Boston Braves, so it makes pretty good sense that the Globe would be all over this type of news. It’s the same reason I know ALL about the dude my cousin was married to, but later divorced…it’s a transitive property (or something).

      • bravojawja - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:34 PM

        Sure, and the NY press still covers the Dodgers and Giants. And Seattle keeps tabs on the Brewers. Etc.

        Who knows why the Globe is talking about this. Maybe the reporter is buddies with Boras or his staff.

      • Jeremiah Graves - Aug 12, 2012 at 2:20 PM

        I’m fearful that maybe y’all didn’t catch the sarcasm I was shooting for…can we get a special font or HTML code for sarcasm up in here?!

  3. nelszz - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    as a braves fan, I am actually hoping they don’t resign him. with the limited payroll they have, he will you up to much of it. also, he is never going to have another year like this.

    • bobulated - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:31 PM

      I kind of agree; as a speed guy enters his 30s, history shows it isn’t always a gradual production decline but more often a plateau that they suddenly run of off. IMHO Bourne will be very effective for another 2, 3 maybe 4 seasons but I believe he will be looking for a 5-7 year deal and as with any Boras client those last years will be very expensive.
      On top of that the Braves will most likely be non-tendering Jair Jurrjens, another Boras client. Boras will have a team mate to hold up to Bourne as an example to get as much $ as you can while you can because sometimes “it” goes away extremely quickly.

      • phillyphever - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:06 PM

        Bourn might also want to mention Ryan Madson as well. Get the money now rather than risk an injury and lose everything.

    • paperlions - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:33 PM

      Yep. It sucks to be a braves fan, but those are the facts. Bourn is have a career year and will be 30 this off-season….paying a player like a career year is his new level of performance always turns out badly. Bourn will probably get both too many years and too high an AAV….if a team can absorb that overpay, fine…but if you are the Braves, you can not.

      • nekotman - Aug 12, 2012 at 4:48 PM

        As a Braves fan I think he’s a gone. I just hope the gnats or sillys don’t sign him. Go west young man!

      • mrwillie - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:06 AM

        I have loved having a Bourne in Braves uniform over the past year, he has been clutch. Watching his successes this year was great, but you knew you were also watching him on his way out of Atl.

        I will try and take some solace in the fact that with Granderson in center, at least Bourne won’t be wearing pinstripes.

    • cranbery - Aug 12, 2012 at 5:10 PM

      You don’t know that……….he is great!

  4. chipfan04 - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:30 PM

    They’ll have much more then that. With chippers 14m Lowes 10m bourns 6.5m and not to mention all the bench players coming off the books they’ll have roughly 35m to play with.

    • Kevin S. - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:50 PM

      The issue isn’t really the 2013 payroll – even assuming the Braves pick up the options on McCann and Hudson, there’s a $60 million gap between payroll this year and committed salary next year. The problem for the Braves is they have so much payroll uncertainty with their stable of arb-eligible players, including Heyward and Hanson hitting the list this year. They probably can afford Bourn’s asking price when Heyward is making $5 million or so, but can they handle it when he’s making $15-20MM?

      • GoneYickitty - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:48 PM

        You’re getting way ahead of yourself talking about Heyward making $15-20M per year. His numbers aren’t even close to that sort of figure. I think he could potentially be that good at some point but I think it’s more likely that this is what he is: a guy with an .820 OPS who can’t cover the strike zone and can be rendered pretty ineffective with quality pitches.

  5. jrocknstuff - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:37 PM

    Would love to see him leading off and playing left field in Camden Yards next year. Baltimore’s offense flourishes with a true leadoff hitter as they did when Brian Roberts was healthy. There’s only so long they can survive as a homer happy club.

    • Kevin S. - Aug 12, 2012 at 12:44 PM

      If he goes to Baltimore, Buck would be insane to keep Jones in center and move Bourn to left.

  6. keithbangedyermom - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    The Braves are smart to pass. Let Amaro sign another ridiculous contract.

    • phillyphever - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:07 PM

      Not happening. I rather keep Pierre (who Bourn’s gonna be in a few years) than sign Bourn to a bad contract.

      • keithbangedyermom - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:25 PM

        Yeah…..you. But what about Amaro?

  7. giantssb42champs - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    Red Sux will offer him Carl Crawford money.

    • hammyofdoom - Aug 13, 2012 at 1:35 AM

      Oh my gosh where did you ever come up with such a creative nickname like Red Sux? You must tell me your secrets.

  8. butchhuskey - Aug 12, 2012 at 1:24 PM

    Will he leave behind…… a Bourn legacy?

    • deepstblu - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:04 PM

      Whoever signs him should check his birth certificate, to verify his Bourn identity.

      • andyreidisfat - Aug 12, 2012 at 6:12 PM

        If the Braves don’t offer enough, there could be a Bourne Ultimatum ….

  9. atlrod - Aug 12, 2012 at 2:52 PM

    I’m glad they won’t offer silly money. He’s having a career year. They’d have to give him a five year contract and he MIGHT be worth the value of the contract for two of those years. Once his speed is gone, his value as a player will plummet. Not worth it at his age.

  10. allzeroes - Aug 12, 2012 at 2:54 PM

    Michael has been great during his time with Atlanta, but I wouldn’t re-sign him. There are going to be too many teams offering contracts that will look silly in a few years. Look for a bargain in the FA market. I am really hoping that they have someone identified in their system that they are going to promote. I really hope I don’t see Nyjer Morgan patrolling CF next year for Atlanta.

    • nekotman - Aug 12, 2012 at 4:56 PM

      They should go after Denard Span in a trade with the Twins. He would be a good player and cheaper.

  11. xmatt0926x - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    As a Phillies fan I am also hoping they pass on him. The Phillies obviously have too many overpays on the team right now. Don’t get me wrong. Having a couple overpay contracts is inevitable for a large market team trying to compete with the rest of the big boys. It seems to be unavoidable. Any star free agent who gets a contract at any age past 27 will likely be an overpay in the last couple years but it is the price of doing business. I just don’t think Bourn is worth $13-15 million per year for 6 years. You might get 4 quality years at most from him at this point and I’m not sure even at his best he’s worth all that per year. That being said, I’m guessing Ruben goes 10 years at $20 million per.

    • keithbangedyermom - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:27 PM

      Don’t worry, he’ll be fired soon enough.

    • sarcasticks - Aug 12, 2012 at 4:58 PM

      Rube doesn’t like the super long-term contact, but he loves to overpay per year. Look for the Phils to offer 18×5.

  12. tmohr - Aug 12, 2012 at 3:11 PM

    The Braves have one of the best defenses in the majors this year, largely because of their outfield. FanGraphs has Bourn third and Heyward fifth among all player.

    If they choose to let Bourn go, they’d better come up with a replacement who can run the ball down.

    • chadjones27 - Aug 13, 2012 at 2:50 PM

      Victorino will probably come cheap as he’s not having the greatest year so far.

  13. Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Aug 12, 2012 at 4:50 PM

    It probably won’t happen, but I’d like to see Heyward moved to CF next year. It’s generally a lot easier to find serviceable help at a corner outfield spot.

  14. cranbery - Aug 12, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    Don’t know how I will feel about the Braves after Chipper retires…………….time will tell!

  15. Walk - Aug 12, 2012 at 7:42 PM

    As a braves fan i knew this story about bourn was coming. It is the way they do buisness these days. The one that worries me most though is brian mcCann. If he goes into free agency he is likely to command a 20 million per year contract maybe better in aav depending on years. However if the braves trade him in the offseason they can get more for him instead of letting him walk. The old draft system would give a sandwich pick for him between the first and second round and possibly a later pick as well but i have no idea about this new system if they get a pick at all if he walks. I guess i will find out when bourn signs elsewhere. As much as i hate to see it i think mac might be gone before next spring and he definetly will if they are a seller next year. He is in the same position as bourn just a year later.

  16. mannyicey - Aug 13, 2012 at 5:20 AM

    First of all, Ted Turner is for Atlanta. That’s our guy and we love him because he’s personable, great to talk to and is a real guy. You can disagree with his politics, but if you only like someone because of their politics only, you are indeed sad and need to relax.

    Now the reason why the PP said that they wish Turner owned the team is because Turner wouldn’t allow Bourn to leave the premises. The bottom line is that the players and fans liked the fact that we had one guy that was held accountable for the Braves.

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