The Atlanta Braves are having an offseason for the ages — not in terms of their own sentimentality, but in terms of ruining everyone else’s.
The Dodgers found out the hard way on Friday night exactly what Atlanta’s secretive front office is up to this winter when Kenley Jansen, the least-buzzed-about free agent, inked a big one-year deal with ATL using some of the money they didn’t use on Freddie Freeman.
In a vacuum, a win-now, short-term Jansen signing, when paired with a slightly-cheaper Matt Olson extension, is a winning formula.
In actuality, we sort of can’t believe they rebounded from leaving “career Brave” Freddie Freeman at the altar to steal one of the Dodgers’ own, doling out a one-year, $16 million deal to the Dodgers’ long-term closer.
Dodgers lose Kenley Jansen to Atlanta Braves
Everything that’s been leaked from Freeman’s camp indicates he was entirely blindsided by Atlanta’s decision to make the dive and commit to Olson, both in trade and for eight total seasons.
Of course, there’s a bit of a self-serving angle there; the lifetime Brave has to use every channel at his disposal to make it seem as if he exhausted all possible options before leaping to his hometown Dodgers. But still, to outsiders, Atlanta moving on so quickly (and allowing the Dodgers to slide in and provide redemption) looked like somewhat shady business.
Conversely, we have to give it up to Atlanta. Coming off back-to-back NLCS matchups, they couldn’t have chosen a more devious path than using some of their Freeman AAV savings on luring Jansen and leaving the Dodgers bullpen high and dry.
In 2022, there’ll be no Jansen. There’ll be no Joe Kelly. No Corey Knebel. Some Tommy Kahnle and Jimmy Nelson, at best.
LA is still waiting for their additional bullpen stopper, and losing Jansen — while coming to the realization that all he wanted was one more year — stings in the grand scheme. Touché.