Monday was bittersweet for Atlanta. Atlanta acquired Matt Olson from the Oakland A’s for Christian Pache, Shea Langeliers, Ryan Cusick, and Joey Estes. On the one hand, the reigning World Champions got much better by bringing in one of the best first basemen in baseball. But that assuredly puts an end to the Freddie Freeman era in Atlanta.
As an outsider, it’s hard to criticize this move for Atlanta. From a pure production standpoint, it’s hard to do better than Matt Olson. In 2021, Olson slashed .271/.371/.540 for a 153 OPS+ en route to a 5.8 rWAR season. Among first basemen, Olson ranked second in home runs, wRC+, and fWAR, trailing only Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in each category.
But for as great as Olson is, he’s not Freddie Freeman. The longtime face of the franchise spent 12 years in Atlanta, compiling 43.1 rWAR, five All-Star appearances, an MVP, and a World Series ring. If Freeman’s time in Atlanta has indeed come to an end, he at least left hoisting the Commissioner’s Trophy.
After trading Sonny Gray over the weekend, the Cincinnati Reds continued their firesale by dealing Eugenio Suárez and Jesse Winker to the Seattle Mariners. In return, the Reds will receive Jake Fraley, Justin Dunn, Brandon Williamson, and a player to be named later.
Reds GM Nick Krall insists the Reds aren’t “making trades because [they] have to.” He says, “We’re making trades because it’s best for our long term outlook of this organization,” and that the team is talking to free agents.
So... this is the lineup I could come up with. Barrero is a question, too... Krall says they'll add, but...— C. Trent Rosecrans (@ctrent) March 14, 2022
Jonathan India 4
Joey Votto 3
Tyler Stephenson 2
Tyler Naquin DH
Kyle Farmer 6
Mike Moustakas 5
Jake Fraley 7
Aristides Aquino 9
Nick Senzel 8
As for the Mariners, Suárez and Winker absolutely make them better. Seattle won’t entertain Suárez at short with JP Crawford on the roster. Suárez struggled in 2021, but he owns a .341 career wOBA. Winker slashed .305/.394/.556 for a 148 wRC+ while hitting a career-high 24 homers in 2021 despite missing time on the IL. For the moment, the AL West is a contest between the Mariners and Astros unless the Angels can get it together.