While I'd like to say I never truly believed the Braves were going to let a team which was one win from the World Series last year get worse, that's actually exactly what I thought as the calendar turned to February. We missed out on Lindor and Arenado for very reasonable prices, but all that is fine now that we brought back the Big Bear.
I'm fine that the team didn't make any sort of massive move outside of this, because people seem to have forgotten how much of a wagon we were last season — even without our best pitcher. The Braves are getting back a healthy Mike Soroka and are adding Charlie Morton to a rotation featuring Max Fried and Ian Anderson. And now you obviously keep your lineup in tact with Ronald Acuña Jr., Marcell Ozuna and MVP Freddie Freeman. This team is going to be right back in the World Series mix in 2021.
This was the minimum that needed to be done, but at least it got done. You give me the squad we had last year and throw Soroka back into the mix and I'll take my chances. And whether this deal ends up being four or five years, $16 million per season is not bad at all if you get even half of what Ozuna gave you in 2020. The guy was unstoppable.
And there was a lot of talk about Ozuna losing value without the DH in the National League, but he was signed last season without the DH. If Atlanta's other two outfielders are Acuña and Cristian Pache — the best defensive prospect in baseball — the Braves are going to be just fine. I believe Ozuna proved his bat is worth whatever deficiencies he may have in the field.
So now that we got the band back together, I guess the only thing left to do is go win the whole damn thing. I still remember the feeling I had walking back to my hotel from the Philly house after that fateful night in October and I truly believe 2021 is the year we get rid of all the demons.
Let's get after it. Welcome back, Marcell.