It’s been obvious for the reason that Braves acquired and prolonged first baseman Matt Olson that Freddie Freeman is probably going headed elsewhere in free company. Freeman made that each one however official Wednesday afternoon when he thanked Braves followers and bid them and the group farewell on Instagram.

“…Thanks from the underside of my coronary heart,” wrote Freeman. “It has been a blast to have you ever cheer for me and I hope I used to be in a position to deliver smiles to a variety of your houses through the years. I gave every part I had day in and time out and I hope you guys noticed that as nicely. Though our time has come to an finish, I sit up for seeing and taking part in in entrance of you all once more. When that point comes, I hope you bear in mind all of the fantastic recollections we made collectively. I really like you Braves Nation! Champions Endlessly!”

It’s not clear whether or not Freeman’s message is a portent for an settlement with a brand new workforce or just an acknowledgment that the primary chapter of his storied profession has drawn to an in depth. A number of attainable touchdown spots for the 2020 NL MVP have dried up prior to now few days, because the Braves not solely basically changed him with Olson, however the Yankees struck up a deal to deliver Anthony Rizzo again to the Bronx.

Experiences lately have urged that Freeman stays of curiosity to the Dodgers, Crimson Sox, Rays and Padres, though every vacation spot comes with its personal causes for a point of skepticism. Freeman has reportedly sought a six-year deal that may carry him via his age-37 season, and the Dodgers are likely to choose larger annual salaries and shorter phrases than that six-year goal. To that finish, USA As we speak’s Bob Nightengale wrote this week that L.A. is “believed” to have supplied a four-year deal to Freeman that features a sizable annual worth.

Seeking to Freeman’s different reported suitors, the Padres have spent greater than a 12 months attempting to maneuver Eric Hosmer, who nonetheless has 4 years and $59M remaining on his contract. As explored extra in depth right here at MLBTR Tuesday, it’s tough to see that deal coming collectively with out a number of different items falling into place first.

The Crimson Sox have been snug exceeding the luxurious tax prior to now, however they opted not to take action and have at pair of fascinating younger first base/designated hitter sorts already in Bobby Dalbec and prospect Tristan Casas. It’s uncertain that both would stand in the way in which of Boston signing a participant of Freeman’s caliber, however the luxurious tax issues current a extra possible roadblock. Nonetheless, SNY’s Andy Martino tweeted Wednesday morning that the Yankees consider their archrivals’ curiosity in Freeman is honest.

As for the Rays, their curiosity is claimed to be actual but additionally comes with the obvious hurdles of the bunch. Tampa Bay’s payroll is perennially among the many lowest within the sport, and whereas the long-term books are exceptionally clear (as famous when first analyzing their reported supply), a free agent of Freeman’s caliber heading to Tampa is totally with out precedent. It was a shock a number of years in the past to see the Rays reel in Charlie Morton on a $30M assure that spanned two seasons; Freeman might command an annual wage in that vary over a long run. MLB Community’s Jon Heyman tweeted Wednesday morning that Tampa Bay has remained “aggressive” in its shocking pursuit of Freeman, however an precise deal between the 2 events would nonetheless register as one of many largest free-agent surprises ever.

The shortage of apparent suitors for a large five- or six-year dedication and the current choices by the Braves and Yankees to maneuver on have created a way amongst some executives within the sport that Freeman’s camp overplayed its hand, Jim Bowden of The Athletic tweets. That’ll be decided by Freeman’s final contract, in fact, however his path to the large contract that when seemed to be a given appears a bit much less clear now than it did when the Yankees and Braves had been nonetheless available in the market for his providers.

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