The Atlanta Braves could be a dark horse fit for Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Trea Turner in free agency. Here are three reasons why it could happen.
Trea Turner ought to be the most-sought-after shortstop on the MLB Free Agent market. In similar fashion to 2021, shortstop is a position in demand, and one that ought to bring with it a record contract of some kind.
Turner will compete with the likes of Carlos Correa, Dansby Swanson and Xander Bogaerts for the highest-paid shortstop title this offseason, but in all likelihood he will set the market. The 29-year-old made $21 million last year, and is coming off arguably the best statistical season of his career.
In 2022, Turner managed 4.84 WAR — a career high — paired with a .298/.343/.466 slash line. He also broke the 100 RBI barrier for the first time, paired with 21 home runs. He can really do it all.
But where will Turner end up? Any shortstop-needy team ought to meet with his representatives, but the Braves arguably make the most sense if he opts not to return to Los Angeles.
Trea Turner rumors: Basic geography points to Atlanta Braves
There were rumblings as recently as this season that a move back East would make sense for Trea Turner, who went to high school in Florida and previously spent time in the Washington Nationals organization.
Considering his familiarity with the NL East, Atlanta gives him the best chance to win, and has a wide open void at shortstop. The fit almost makes too much sense. Former MLB GM Jin Bowden outlined this via The Athletic (subscription required), stating “The Braves are a great geographic fit for Turner. He went to high school in Florida and college at North Carolina State.”
Playing close to home in an area he’s familiar with should do wonders for Turner. Heck, it played a role in Braves legend Freddie Freeman leaving for Los Angeles just last offseason. That brings us to our next point: