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Braves showed interest in Justin Verlander, per report

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The pitching market has been active early.

Seattle Mariners v Houston Astros Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

UPDATE: Verlander is apparently signing with the Astros, per his own brother:

What a dream in the dark, though...

While the No. 1 priority for the Atlanta Braves is keeping first baseman Freddie Freeman long term, Alex Anthopoulos and the rest of the front office are exploring other ways to improve the club. Atlanta already locked up veteran catcher Manny Pina on a two-year deal earlier this week and reports indicate that they are feeling out the starting pitching market.

The Athletic’s David O’Brien reports that the Braves are among the teams that have expressed interest in Justin Verlander.

Verlander, who sat out the 2021 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery, has drawn interest from a variety of teams. He is reportedly looking to sign with a contender that is located on the east coast and also holds Spring Training in Florida. Since Anthopoulos took over, the Braves have shown a willingness to add veteran pitchers on short deals so Verlander would seem like a natural target.

The New York Post’s Joel Sherman also reported Wednesday that the Braves were among the teams that checked in on Noah Syndergaard before he agreed to a one-year, $21 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels. That could have simply been due-diligence on Atlanta’s part, but it does signal that they are in the market to add a starting pitcher.