Even though the uncertainty surrounding the Atlanta Braves’ front office is ongoing, the club is prepared to move forward with changes to the coaching staff. MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports that it is likely Walt Weiss will replace Terry Pendleton as bench coach and Eric Young Sr. will replace Eddie Perez as first base coach. Bowman reports that the changes could be announced as soon as next week.
While Dayton Moore is far and away the most talked about candidate to move into a front office role with the Braves, he is not the only option. Moore is under contract for 2018 with the Royals who may not grant Atlanta permission to speak with him. Bowman reports that the Braves also have their eyes on former Cubs GM Jim Hendry and Toronto’s Alex Anthopoulos.
Minor League Ball’s Asher Feltman chronicles Braves third base prospect Austin Riley’s strong performance in the Arizona Fall League. On that same note, the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s David O’Brien writes that it wouldn’t make sense for the Braves to sign Mike Moustakas given Riley’s development.
John Sickels has released his Top 20 prospects list for the Atlanta Braves and there is no surprise about who is in the No. 1 spot. He does have some interesting thoughts on Kevin Maitan who checked in at No. 13.
Hot Stove news
Former Braves first round pick Mike Minor has declined his half of a $10 million mutual option with the Royals and is now a free agent. MLB Trade Rumors reports that Kansas City may pursue re-signing Minor as the team’s closer. Minor put up a 2.55 ERA in 77 2/3 innings as a reliever in 2017.
As expected, the Pirates picked up Andrew McCutchen’s 2018 option which will pay him $14.5 million.
The Marlins declined their $2 million option on 44-year old outfielder Ichiro Suzuki for the 2018 season. Suzuki hit .255/.318/.332 in 2017
In a somewhat surprising development, Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka opted in on the final three years of his deal to remain in New York. Tanaka will receive $67 million over the remaining three years but the idea was there that he could have landed a deal in the range of $100 million on the open market.