The Morning Chop: Braves Really Want This Olivera Guy

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March 21 – Hector Olivera is Still a Free Agent

but probably not for much longer.  Also:  Atlanta must really want this guy.

Yesterday I got a ping about a report – with dubious sourcing – that the Braves are willing to raise their offer to Hector Olivera up to a six-year term.  My thought then – and now – is that this just doesn’t sound like something the Braves would do.

We had initially heard and reported that the “comfort zone” for Atlanta was in the $30-40m range.  That suggests a 4-year contract offer in the neighborhood of $9m per year.

Earlier this week, we heard that the Braves could be up to 4 years and $40 million.  That sounds like the top of that comfort zone.

But now this from David O’Brien last night:

Is Atlanta now at 5 years, $45 million?  $50 million perhaps?  Heck, if you read that tweet literally, then you could infer that a six year offer wasn’t ruled out.  But even with a more conservative reading, this sounds like a 5-year deal may now be on the table.

Apparently, the Braves are betting that Hector Olivera will turn out to be something between Chase Headley and Chase Utley.  If that’s the case, then he’s probably worth that.  It’s so hard to handicap these races, but if Atlanta is continuing to raise their offer, then I’ve got to think that (a) there is mutual interest, and (b) the competition is alive and kicking.

But can we just get it over with already??