This time of year, general managers are searching for that diamond in the rough, the no-risk, low-key signing of a player that could provide huge dividends for a team during the season.
The Braves have been notorious for exploiting this method of thinking. Just last year, the team picked up Jhoulys Chacin and Lucas Harrell at various points in the season, guys that showed no evidence of putting together the caliber performances that would lend them to being traded for any sort of value.
But they did and they were.
On Friday, the Braves inked Kris Medlen to a minor league deal, and I’m not at all suggesting that he will add his name to the aforementioned duo. But Atlanta has seen what Medlen can do when healthy, and this type of signing is what occurs most as we head into the final days and weeks before teams head off for spring training.
On Saturday, the likes of Ike Davis, Manny Parra and Vance Worley were snatched up by teams looking to round out holes in the roster and hoping to catch lightning in a bottle, much like the Braves with Chacin and Harrell. Jarrod Saltalamacchia was also scooped up earlier in the week.
Brett Anderson, Nick Hundley and Greg Holland are some of the established big leaguers that were picked up in the past week.
Is there anybody on your radar that you would like the Braves or anyone else to sign to a low-risk deal in the next few weeks? Guys like Kelly Johnson and Jeff Francoeur are surely close to signing somewhere, if not with Atlanta.
What about more established players like Matt Wieters and Desmond Jennings that have yet to be locked down?
Baseball will be back before you know it.