The most interesting tender/non-tender decision will be on Greene. If the Braves retain him, they will have about $33.5 million of their 2020 payroll tied up in three relievers.
Other players, including potential acquisitions in free agency and trades: Add a few million dollars for pre-arbitration players (notably Mike Soroka, Max Fried, Sean Newcomb, Austin Riley) to the two categories covered above, and the Braves' payroll would be around $100 million before other moves on the free-agency and trade markets. The Braves ended the 2019 season with a $144 million payroll, including $6 million in buyouts of 2020 options, so there's still considerable spending room for next season. Exactly how much isn't clear because (a) the Braves don't disclose their budget in advance and haven't said if the payroll will increase significantly from the 2019 level, which ranked 14th among MLB teams; (b) the Braves typically set aside some of their budget for in-season additions; and (c) trades and non-tenders could free up additional money by shedding salaries.
What is clear, however, is that the Braves have several pressing needs to address with their remaining funds. They must acquire a catcher. They need to re-sign free agent Josh Donaldson or acquire another big bat to replace his. They need to add an accomplished starting pitcher.
Whatever follows, the signing of Smith to a contract worth a guaranteed $40 million over three years and potentially $52 million over four years seems to signal the start of an intriguing offseason.
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