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Thread: Furcal down to Braves, Dodgers

  1. #1
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    Furcal down to Braves, Dodgers

    Source: Furcal to sign with Bravesby Ken Rosenthal
    Ken Rosenthal has been the senior baseball writer for FOXSports.com since Aug. 2005. He appears weekly on the FSN Baseball Report and MLB on FOX.



    Updated: December 16, 2008, 3:55 AM EST 9 comments add this RSS blog email Print The Braves are on the verge of a major offseason upset.

    Rafael Furcal is coming home.

    In a stunning turnaround, the free-agent shortstop has chosen the Braves over the A's, according to a major-league source.

    A contract agreement is expected to be announced Tuesday, conditional on Furcal passing a physical.

    "They're in deep," Furcal's agent, Paul Kinzer, told FOXSports.com on Monday night, before a decision had been reached. "He's seriously considering it."

    The A's are believed to have made the high offer for Furcal four years in the $40 million range, according to major-league sources.

    The Braves, however, made a late, rapid push for Furcal, and their offer was believed to be for three years with a vesting option for a fourth season.

    Furcal, who owns homes in Atlanta and Los Angeles, preferred to rejoin the Braves or stay with the Dodgers, sources said.

    One rival executive said Monday night, "He will do whatever he can not to go to Oakland," citing Furcal's preference to be with one of his prior teams.

    Furcal, 31, left the Braves for the Dodgers after the 2005 season, signing a three-year, $39 million free-agent contract.

    His return to Atlanta would give the Braves stunning flexibility in their middle infield, perhaps enabling them to revive their trade talks for Padres right-hander Jake Peavy.

    Furcal could switch to second base, a position he has played in winter ball, if the Braves move Kelly Johnson to left field or trade Johnson for an outfielder or pitching help.

    Or, Furcal could remain at shortstop if the Braves trade Yunel Escobar, either as part of a Peavy package or in a separate deal.

    The availability of Peavy, however, is unclear.

    "We are no longer actively pursuing any trade for Jake, which is not to say someone won't approach us," Padres president Sandy Alderson told the San Diego Union-Tribune on Monday.

    "We said from the very beginning ... that we would not make a trade unless it made baseball sense."

    The Braves began the offseason intent on landing two quality starting pitchers. They acquired right-hander Javier Vazquez from the White Sox but failed in attempts to land Peavy and sign free-agent right-hander A.J. Burnett.

    The addition of Furcal could lead the Braves to continue their pursuits of less prominent free-agent pitchers such as left-hander Randy Wolf and Japanese right-hander Kenshin Kawakami. But it also would give them the option to explore bigger deals.

    Kinzer said last week that the A's, Dodgers, Blue Jays and Royals were the four finalists for Furcal. The Blue Jays and Royals, however, fell out of the running because of economic reasons, according to major-league sources. The Dodgers apparently were not willing to offer Furcal more than two years.

    Orlando Cabrera would become the top shortstop on the free-agent market if the Braves complete their deal with Furcal, becoming a prime candidate for the Dodgers.

    Other options for the Dodgers would include re-signing Angel Berroa, a lesser free agent, or trading for the Pirates' Jack Wilson.
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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Sweet, now to make a deal for Escobar!!! Trade them Arroyo and then go and sign Randy Wolf to a cheaper per year shorter term deal than Arroyo had. 2 yrs. 7-8 per.
    "You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one."

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    Vampire Weekend @Bernie's camisadelgolf's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    I would take a lot more than Arroyo to get Escobar, but that would be a good place to start.

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    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by camisadelgolf View Post
    I would take a lot more than Arroyo to get Escobar, but that would be a good place to start.
    Too me it depends. Were those errors Escobar had the product of a possible shoulder injury I have heard he had last season. Or were they a product of a Felipe Lopez approach to the game? If it's the former I probably would agree (depending on the severity of said injury), if it's the latter he doesn't look nearly as promising and thus not worthy of Arroyo on his own.
    "You can't let praise or criticism get to you. It's a weakness to get caught up in either one."

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    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    I would like to remind everyone that I predicted this months ago.
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

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    Greatness In The Making RedLegSuperStar's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Seems like to me they' keep Escobar for ss, move Furcal to 2nd, and Johnson to OF.
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    smells of rich mahogany deltachi8's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    I would like to remind everyone that I predicted this months ago.
    That's why you have multiple Nobel prizes...
    Nothing to see here. Please disperse.

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    Let's ride BRM's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    I would like to remind everyone that I predicted this months ago.
    Tooting your own horn again? You're such a modest fellow.

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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by RedLegSuperStar View Post
    Seems like to me they' keep Escobar for ss, move Furcal to 2nd, and Johnson to OF.
    If you want to maximize the value of middle infielders, you don't move them.

    Furcal has way less value as a secondbaseman, and Johnson likely goes from an above average seconbaseman to a below average LF.

    Trading Escobar is the best way to maximize the value the Braves have.

  11. #10
    This one's for you Edd Heath's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Yay us.

    One less .OBP and defensively challenged fast guy off the market.
    Some people play baseball. Baseball plays Jay Bruce.

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    Boom Goes the Dynamite Screwball's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by Heath View Post
    Yay us.

    One less .OBP and defensively challenged fast guy off the market.
    Not sure I'd call him OBP challenged. His OBP over the last 9 season is .352. The league average during that same time period is .344.

    Also, I haven't seen Furcal play much the last couple years, but is he really that bad defensively? A quick check at The Fielding Bible doesn't show him to be among the worst SS's in the game, though nor is he among the best. I always just assumed he was pretty good defensively due to his quickness and rocket arm.

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    Vampire Weekend @Bernie's camisadelgolf's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by Screwball View Post
    Not sure I'd call him OBP challenged. His OBP over the last 9 season is .352. The league average during that same time period is .344.

    Also, I haven't seen Furcal play much the last couple years, but is he really that bad defensively? A quick check at The Fielding Bible doesn't show him to be among the worst SS's in the game, though nor is he among the best. I always just assumed he was pretty good defensively due to his quickness and rocket arm.
    Based on my personal observations, 2008 was a step backwards for Furcal defensively. Until this year, he was always one of the best at his position, though. I chalk up his regression a lot more to injuries than age or ability.

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    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    I'd pretty much empty the minors to acquire Escobar.

    Unfortunately, I think the Braves are going to keep him.
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    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Quote Originally Posted by BRM View Post
    Tooting your own horn again? You're such a modest fellow.
    And good lookin too.
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

  16. #15
    Member membengal's Avatar
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    Re: Furcal To The Braves

    Echo Footstool on Escobar, time to make a run at him. He solves a lot of short and long term needs on this team...


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