The Atlanta Braves have won five straight division titles in the NL East and have an elite core locked in for years to come. The upcoming offseason provides an opportunity for the front office to figure out why the team failed to win a playoff series this year. Filling in the gaps on the roster will be crucial.
Of course, the simplest way to fill in those gaps is through the free agent market. Unproven players and established veterans alike will be looking for new teams to call home on either short-term or long-term deals. With that in mind, here's a look at three free agents the Braves need to target.
Atlanta Braves Free Agency
1. Nathan Eovaldi, SP
The NLDS proved that pitching depth is one of the most valuable aspects of any MLB roster. The Braves were forced to rely heavily on their bullpen in Games 3 & 4 with Spencer Strider and Charlie Morton not fully healthy. Atlanta needs another consistent veteran and Nathan Eovaldi is as consistent as they come. The 32-year-old has logged an ERA under 4.00 in each of the last three seasons and owns a 21-14 record during that span. He also has 11 years of MLB experience under his belt and knows what it takes to perform in the biggest of games. A rotation featuring Max Fried, Kyle Wright, Strider, Morton and Eovaldi would be downright scary.
2. Adam Ottavino, RP
The Braves do not have many weak spots on their roster, but the bullpen may be one of them. Closer Kenley Jansen is set to enter free agency, as is Jesse Chavez and Darren O'Day. That's three relievers that combined to throw 138.2 innings this past season. Atlanta remains in win-now mode and poaching a reliable bullpen arm from a division rival seems like a perfect move. Adam Ottavino was spectacular with the New York Mets in 2022, posting a 2.06 ERA to go along with a 0.98 WHIP and 4.9 strikeouts per walk mark. At 37 years of age, he could very well be looking for a one-year or two-year deal with a team capable of winning a World Series championship. The Braves fit that mold to a tee.
3. Jace Peterson, UTIL
As mentioned above, the Braves have most of their core locked up on long-term deals. That's why it makes zero sense for Atlanta's front office to overpay on an infielder at this point. It would be smart to have Vaughn Grissom start the season out at Triple-A in order to get consistent at-bats, though. That leaves the top bench spot open and Jace Peterson is a great option to fill it. Peterson can play every position in the infield and is serviceable in the outfield, too. It doesn't hurt that the 32-year-old smacked a career-high 8 home runs and logged 12 stolen bases in 2022, either. He's going to be one of the most underrated free agents available.
Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.
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