Chipper Jones Warned Freddie Freeman About Ditching the Braves: ‘Playing a Very Dangerous Game’

by Chase Thomas

Freddie Freeman is no longer an Atlanta Brave. Now, he is a Los Angeles Dodger. The MLB star will be one for many more years after signing a six-year deal with the powerhouse Dodgers.

Before the signing, though, the Braves traded for Oakland Athletics’ first baseman Matt Olson. The Braves gave up two premier prospects in the deal. From then, folks wondered what this meant for Freeman’s future in Atlanta. Now we have our answer. However, this back-and-forth between Atlanta and Freddie Freeman went on for a long time and legendary third baseman Chipper Jones warned Freeman about snubbing the Braves.

Chipper Jones Speaks on Freddie Freeman

In an interview with 680 The Fan on The Chuck & Chernoff Show in Atlanta, Jones said, “I do not agree with the way that this was handled on Freddie’s side.”

He continued, “If you want to play in Atlanta, you play in Atlanta. You maybe take a little less to be happy and play in a place that is comfortable for you.” That is ultimately not what Freeman elected to do. The Braves never got on the same page when it came to what it would take to get Freeman to sign the long-term extension with the Braves. A team with which he just won the World Series.

Chipper continued, “The second that Freddie told me that he rejected the five for $135 [million] after the All-Star break, I told him, ‘You’re playing a very dangerous game. You go out on the free-agent market, you get courted by all the pretty girls that are on the block, chances are, you’re not gonna come back. If you take your time waiting on that six-year [deal] into January, [Atlanta] has a job to do.’”

That was similar to what Freeman ultimately signed for, but with the Dodgers.

Chipper noted that waiting as long as Freeman did put the Braves in a bad spot. If they wait too long and he still does not sign, the Braves would have been in really difficult waters. That is what happened. Alex Anthopolous, the Braves’ general manager, had to get aggressive and traded for Freeman’s replacement in Olson. He could not risk losing Freeman for anything. Somebody else could have traded for the Athletics’ star before the Braves could jump in.

Freddie Freeman’s Perspective

Freeman said in a separate interview, “I only got one offer.” He continued, “The last formal offer I got was at the trade deadline. We countered and that was it.”

The situation did not end well for either side. Now, Freeman is no longer an Atlanta Brave. Now, he is a member of the Braves’ biggest rival in the Los Angeles Dodgers where the two franchises figure to continue going back-and-forth in the NL for years to come. Only time will tell how history will view what happened in Atlanta this spring.