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Atlanta Braves Morning Chop: fetching more catching

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – JUNE 22: Kurt Suzuki #8 of the Minnesota Twins tagged out by Tyler Flowers #21 of the Chicago White Sox at home on June 22, 2014 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

Now that the reality has set in that the end of the 2018 season has happened, it really is time to start wondering about what the Braves are doing behind the plate.

In 2017, Atlanta Braves‘ catchers led all of baseball in production with a fangraphs’ WAR of 4.9 and a runs-created score of 119 (while hitting .279 to boot).

In 2018, those numbers lagged a bit as both Tyler Flowers and Kurt Suzuki were both a year older – funny how that happens – while Flowers came into the season slowly… the result of a first game injury.

Still, the tandem (combined with a few cameos from others) combined to post a 3.0 fWAR, 96 wRC+, and hit .246.  Those figures were still good enough to be 6th in all of baseball.

But it was at the end of August that Atlanta inked the soon-to-be-33-year-old (January) Flowers to another extension:  $4 million for 1 year, plus a $6 million 2020 option that carries a $2 million buyout.

Here’s a list of his most recent annual salaries with the Braves:

  • 2016:  $2 million
  • 2017:  $3 million
  • 2018:  $4 million

So now he has a $6 million guarantee in hand that could turn into $10 million over the next 2 years for his age 33 and 34 year seasons.

Heck yeah – he probably couldn’t sign the deal fast enough.

But it’s fair to wonder now what the Braves might be up to… since only 1 member of this pair of teammates is definitely returning.

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