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Braves, Glavine Deal Close; Griffey Next?

Most of the focus centered on Atlanta over the past couple days has zeroed in on the possible acquisition of outfielder Ken Griffey Jr., who would provide experience, leadership and power to the team's lineup.

Well, the Braves are looking for a little bit of all those categories in starting pitching, too, and the veteran they have in mind may be closer to signing a new deal with the team than he's been all offseason.

Accoding to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, the Braves are closing in on the completion of a one-year deal for veteran starter Tom Glavine. According to Rosenthal's sources, the proposed deal would pay Glavine $1 million guaranteed, with another $1 million in the form of a roster bonus for being on the Opening Day roster, and two more bonuses tied to his number of days on the roster. The total could reach something close to the $4-$4.5 million deal Glavine was hoping for from the team.

There's another key catch to the current draft of a potential Glavine deal. The money in Glavine's deal would be deferred, leaving the Braves with enough cash to add a power-hitting outfielder.

That, of course, is where Griffey comes back in. No one is denying that there's mutual interest. No one is denying that Griffey talked with Braves GM Frank Wren on Monday. Everyone agrees that a decision will come on Tuesday. The question is what Griffey values more: A competitive situation on the coast he wants to live on, or a significantly larger amount of money.

According to's Mark Bowman, the Braves are offering up to $1.5 million in their offer for Griffey. That's a decent salary, but it's also nothing compared to the deals being bantered about by the Mariners last week, with numbers like $4 and $5 million coming up.

That's a $3.5 million difference between a team Griffey wants to play on, which has a Spring Training base some 20 minutes from his Orlando home, and one on the other side of the country where he started his career. There's the decision: Geography vs. money.

What do people think? Will Glavine wrap up his deal with the Braves today? Will Griffey pick the Braves, or return to the Mariners? Is anyone else wondering why Wren is just now getting around to pushing for Glavine and Griffey's signatures now?

By Cameron Smith  |  February 17, 2009; 9:05 AM ET
Categories:  Braves  
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